Why Jade Shipped Her Special Wedding Dishes Across the Globe

published Jan 21, 2015
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(Image credit: Leela Cyd)

Who cooks and eats here: Jade and Toby Keller, son Cy, and dog Dot
Where: Chiang Mai, Thailand
See Jade’s Kitchen: Jade’s Thai Kitchen in Chiang Mai

As we read yesterday, when Jade and Toby moved to Thailand over four years ago, they thought they might stay for one or two years. Since then they’ve come to feel so at home in their new country, they have no plans to go anywhere.

So, when Jade made the decision to have her beloved wedding dishes shipped from Santa Barbara to Thailand, it was a big decision — but it’s served her in surprising ways.

(Image credit: Leela Cyd)

What’s special about your wedding dishes?

When we got married (in Santa Barbara, California), several dear friends chipped in and bought us our set of dishes and platters. I love the design; how different pieces complement each other, yet they aren’t all exactly alike. When we lived in California, a few of our best friends lived really close by, and I would invite them over for dinner, drinks, or dessert all the time. It was all really casual and easy. My dishes saw daily use.

How did they come to Thailand, and when do you use them?

Then we moved to Thailand and I left the dishes behind, in storage. We got a bunch of plastic plates because that’s what everyone uses here and we were only going to stay a year or two anyway (so we thought).

I missed my plates, though. In our third year here, after much debating — as I was so worried about them getting damaged or broken in shipping — I finally decided to ship them out here. They made it safely and I carefully put them on display.

However, though I love hosting, we only very rarely have local Thai friends come visit. We live about a 20-minute drive from the center of town, but here that’s considered “too far” (a laughable notion to anyone from LA) and no one comes out to visit. We meet all our friends in town.

The great irony is all the visitors we do have are friends and family who have come from literally the other side of the globe. So while our house is too far away for our local Thai friends, it has been the hosting grounds for many of our American and European friends and family, and I pull out my wedding dishes to welcome and serve them. In that way, our wedding dishes, which used to be a casual and quotidian element in our home, have become more precious.

Thanks for sharing, Jade!