A Simple Wooden Plate=Love

It is amazing how simple things from our childhood memories shape and guide us. These simple things frequently involve food. My Mom’s older sister, Auntie Jack, and her family lived a block away when I was growing up. Auntie and Uncle had four kids. Three of them were older than me and my brother. One was our age, their baby. We played with the baby all the time. That meant that we would sleep over at Auntie and Uncles fairly regularly. When we got up in the morning, Auntie Jack made us breakfast. Usually, she served toast with breakfast. To most folks, toast is no big deal. To me it was special. You see, Auntie jack had a round wood plate that she used to serve toast on. It was a special plate that only came out when toast was made. At our house, Mom and Dad put toast on any old plate that was handy. We didn’t have a cool plate like Auntie had.

Before I got married last year, Auntie asked what I wanted for my shower and wedding gifts. I didn’t even have to think about it. I blurted out, “A toast plate like you have.” She laughed and asked me what I was talking about. I told her how having toast at her house was special because of that plate. I wanted one as a gift. She then explained to me that she had received that plate as a gift at her wedding. Originally, it was a plate with a dome top to serve cheese in. Over time she just used it as a toast plate. She kept insisting that I must want something more than a simple wooden plate. I insisted that was all I wanted from her. She just laughed and shook her head. My wedding shower came and went. No toast plate was among the many gifts. I figured that she must have forgotten or just thought I was joking. I wasn’t.

The day after our wedding, we had a gift opening at my folk’s house. We opened gifts and ohhed and ahhed at our many blessings. One of the last gift bags was light and only had my Auntie’s name on it. I was puzzled as I had already opened a gift from Auntie and Uncle. Why was there another gift here? Why did it only have her name on it? Weird, I thought. I opened it and gasped. Then I started to sob. It was one of those big, blubbering, snot bubble, kind of sobs that a box of tissues and two hand towels couldn’t stop. This made Auntie Jack cry too.  Inside the bag was a wooden plate!! I held it up, still crying, trying to explain what it was. Mr. Bernie had no clue what was going on. His family looked a little perplexed as well. I tried to explain about the plate. I was crying too hard for anyone to understand. I finally got the story out and hugged my Auntie tightly.

Auntie had a story for me. “Bern, I couldn’t believe that you wanted an old wooden plate for toast. It wasn’t something I ever gave much thought. I had to ask your Mom, to be sure that you weren’t just being silly. When your Mom assured me that you really wanted a wooden plate for toast, I had to get busy. It took me several weeks of looking online and at antique shops to find one. Finally, two weeks before the wedding I found one. I was worried you wouldn’t like it because it had carvings on it. I was thrilled to finally find this plate for you.” I expressed my gratitude with another hug.

If you came to my house and saw this little wooden plate next to my toaster, you would probable think little of it. The trouble my Auntie went through and the love she has bestowed through it is hidden in its grain and etched into my heart. You might not realize how magical this little wooden plate is. Mr Bernie and I share our toast with each other and remember how it is the simple things in life that bind us together. Everyone should have a special wooden toast plate to serve with.

Found the Marbles




  1. Happy SITS day… Sorry I’m late getting to the party!

  2. Absolutely… and happy belated blogaversary to you tooo….

  3. That might have been the sweetest story I’ve heard all day!

  4. I love the woodeen plate!
    I asked for a wooden tray for Christmas- we got one for our wedding, a very solid thick one, round, I used it for serving pizzas most offtenn… I used it a lot. after 20 years it split in 2, and I found I was always looking for it each time we had pizza-
    So I asked for one to replace it. I got a wooden bowl and square wooden platter. Not the same and I still miss my big solid wooden round tray.

    • Thank you. Oh, I do hope you stumble on a wooden round tray somewhere. One day you will be poking around and it will find you!!

  5. Is it odd that I’ve never seen a wooden plate?

    • No I don’t think so. I think most of them are decorative. Aunties started out as a cheese plate with a glass dome on the top. That is a big more common.

  6. Oh my goodness….
    First you have me laughing with your Zumba story, and now I sit here crying with you wooden toast plate.
    I know exactly what you mean, “. . .hidden in its grain and etched into my heart.”
    I am very sentimental, and most that is very precious to me (other than my children) are simple ordinary objects and the memories attached to them.

    • I’m an all around gal. I almost didn’t write the story about the Toast Plate. I don’t do well writing normal, touching pieces. With some encouragement, I wrote it and posted it. It was even published in Minnesota Moments magazine!

  7. OK, you've almost got ME blubbering! Something similar happened when I told my grandma I wanted two coffee cups like hers. She thought I was nuts. But, when I was little and stayed the night at her house, she always made a great breakfast of poached eggs & whole wheat toast (with real butter!) Since I can remember, that breakfast also came with "coffee" – a little dash of coffee in a glass of warm milk with some sugar. I got my mugs!

  8. katieross83 says:

    Oh, Bernie, this made me cry! How beautiful…and how so very true. Sometimes something as seemingly simple and unimportant as a wooden plate can carry so much love with it. Those are the best things in life! Thanks for sharing this beautiful story and for making me cry :) in a good way.

  9. Heartwarming, Bernie! *smiles through watering eyes* My family has a similar story about a spoon; it's (fake) gold and lived in Mom's silverware drawer. My sis and I used to call it The Goody Spoon and if you were lucky enough to have it, well, you were QUEEN for the day. The Goody Spoon disappeared years ago… now I want to find one again and surprise Noelle at Christmas. LOL

  10. Oh my goodness, Bernie! Such a beautiful post. Totally warmed my heart. Loved it!

  11. I have tears in my eyes after reading that post. What a beautiful story!

    • Thank you, Jessica. I have been so pleased and surprised by everyone\’s reaction to this. I only thought I would make my Auntie cry. *lol*

  12. What a wonderful story! How sweet that she paid attention to what you were saying and then spent the time and effort to find one for you. I'm sure that is a treasured plate! And you are right. We often remember food. Oh, this was a lovely lovely post. Thank you.

  13. Memories from childhood are so magical – now you can keep that tradition going. ( So sweet – loved this post). I wish mom had saved some of the things I remember fondly.

    • They sure are. Thank you, I \’m glad you enjoyed the post. It was fun to do something serious for a cahnge.
      I\’m sorry about your mom tossing some of your things you remembered. I\’m sure that was painful.

  14. Lovely post. I cried a little. Isn't it amazing the things our young minds hold onto growing up. And I hope it means as much to our kids as it did to you that my sister and I live so close (same street – one block over). Lots of sleepovers, hanging out and just spending time together.

    • Oh, your kids are so blessed to have that. We loved playing with my cousin and torturing the older brother and sister. I can\’t imagine not growing up around them.

  15. Oh, I almost forgot!!!! Thanks for supporting Thoughtful Thursday, my dear, dear friend. Love ya!!!

  16. Oh Bernie, you have such a lovely heart. Not many could appreciate things based on mere memories or sentimental reasons… but you do, and so sincerely!!!

    I love that you shared this bit of your childhood memory, about Aunty Jack and her wooden plate, about the toasts that she served for breakfasts… A lot of my childhood memories that I remembered fondly are those that were evoked by simple things… like a certain bubble bath, a particular shaped lunch box, and homemade soup that my grandma used to make.

    You're so lucky to be surrounded by so many relatives who truly care and love you!

    • I was blessed. How nice that you had a Grandma when you were growing up who cooked. My mom\’s mom passed away a couple weeks after she got married. My dad\’s mom was sick a lot and didn\’t cook for us. I hope that you have your grandma\’s recipe.

  17. So very lovely.

  18. That was a very emotional moment when you opened your toast plate. I am eating my toast now on a paper towel.

  19. Jackie Eckard says:

    Bernie didn't know it was your goal to make me cry today *lol* of course I teared up you know me well. You should know I look at my toast plate differently now, it is an important plate and also a
    Bernie reminder. Thank you for making me feel so appreciated your blog was like a warm hug. Love Ya Auntie Jack

  20. That is such a sweet story, Bern! Pass the tissues please.

  21. Ohhhh you had me bawling at the gift opening, both you and your Aunt (who I adore by the way), and now you have me crying this morning again. I consider myself blessed to even have been there when something so special happened. I am glad you are using the plate and enjoying it everyday, it's a great way to think of her often, maybe you should call her today….. ;)

  22. Give me two boxes of tissues and a towel, for I am crying, too. Bernie, this is one of the most touching posts you have written to date. The depth of your and Auntie Jack's love for one another is evident in this post. How blessed you are to have each other. Thank you for sharing this incredible story.

    • Audrey, that means a lot to me. Thank you. We are very blessed. I called Mom this morning and said, \”I\’m going to make Auntie cry this morning.\” My mom said, \’Why?\” I read her the blog and she agreed Auntie would tear up a bit. *lol*

  23. Just so sweet. Thanks for sharing this story, Bernie.

  24. Something that will be around forever! Great post Bernie! It's the simple things…..

  25. Beautiful story! You need to scrapbook your wedding and include this story.

    • Anne, me scrapbook? Are you crazy? Jen and MIchele are scrapping it for me. Good idea about adding the story, thank you for the suggestion!!

      • Ya ya, we are on it alright! lol, we will include it for sure though, when we get that far. I am guessing this winter when the weather is ishy.

  26. Aw….now that is a wonderful post!!! Brought tears to my eyes. Doesn't take a lot these days to do that but this was very, very sweet!! Thanks! I think I only need one box and one handt towel….

    • Thank you, Beth Ann. With all you have going on, I\’m pretty sure a Hallmark commercial would have you reaching for the tissues and hand towels. *hugs*


  1. [...] something moved me to write about a toast plate that my Auntie Jack gave me. You can read it here.  My friend, Audrey, from Minnesota Prairie Roots suggested I submit it to Minnesota Moments [...]

  2. [...] I wrote my second serious blog post. [...]

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