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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!!

Giving gifts of handcrafted spoons to symbolise affection and love is a craft tradition in Wales which has it's roots in the 17th century with the oldest surviving example of a love spoon dating back to 1667. Celtic handmade love spoons were often quite plain but over the years they have become quite elaborate, decorative and intricate.
The spoon was the main eating utensil of the day so the giver was also representing that he would take care of the lady.
Hand carved from one piece of wood, the carver would present a love spoon to a lady to show his interest in her, quite often as a precursor to courtship or engagement. If the lady accepted the spoon then she accepted his interest.
After I had graduated from Nursing school my Grandmother, and two of my Aunts decided to go to Europe.  We were able to see France, Belgium, Germany, and Luxembourg.  It was a fun two weeks!
My grandmother and I were able to stay longer so we went to England and Wales. We had a great time. The very best thing for me the whole trip was going to Wales.  My grandmother's sister and husband were living there at that time. They had completed a bit of genealogy and showed us were my great-great grandfather's house was in Swansea, Wales. 
While we were there they explained to us the history of the Welsh Love Spoons.  I was fascinated with the intricate details of these spoons.  We found a shop that sold these spoons.  My grandmother bought the top one for me and the second one for herself.  It was one of the best gifts I could have ever received!  As my grandmother handed it to me she told me what a wonderful granddaughter I was and that this trip was one of her favorites because she was with me. 
When my grandmother passed away I was living in Las Vegas but my mother made sure that I ended up with her spoon. 
The third spoon was one her sister gave her when she came back to the USA after living in Wales.
Love comes in all forms and for me this year I have missed my grandmother dearly.
She was a shining example to me and told me to live my life to the fullest.
I hope everyone will have the best Valentine's Day ever with those we love and remember those that have gone ahead.
Today is also the day to "HOP" on over to the Primitive and Folk Artist Blog to sign up for the fabulous giveaway they are having.  Last count there were over 20 prizes donated to this giveaway!
Enjoy,
Barb


12 comments:

  1. This was a beautiful post, Barb! Love the education on those gorgeous spoons!
    }}Hugs{{
    Vicky

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  2. What a great story about your trip and the wonderful memories you have of your Grandma! I love the spoons and the story behind them, thanks for sharing. Have a great day!

    Blessings~Karen

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  3. Great spoons, I hope you have a Happy Valentines Day.

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  4. Thank you for sharing about the spoons. That is so neat! I love the history behind them. Happy Valentines Day Barb! Colleen

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  5. Happy Valentine's day....♥.. ♥... ♥....Love Ria......♥.. ♥... ♥....

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  6. What a really neat feature ! Thanks for sharing. I truly enjoted it.
    Happy Valentines Day Barb!
    Kris

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  7. Barb, what a beautiful story. I really enjoyed learning about the history of
    the wooden spoons.
    Happy Valentine's Day
    Hugs,
    Susan

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  8. Wow Barb, what a touching story about the spoons and your family! Beautiful! Thanks for sharing with us and Happy Valentines ~*~Lisa

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  9. What a wonderful history lesson!!! Love learning little things that started in other countries. Those (the spoons) are a wonderful memory of your grandmother.
    Happy Valentine's Day,
    Lois

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  10. Thank You for sharing that, my Dad carves these spoons but I never knew the symbolism of them. I miss my grandmother also, she was heavy on my mind on Monday. It would have been her birthday. She has been gone for over 25 years and I still miss her and remember her every February 13th.
    Cathy

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  11. I'd never heard of the spoons before -- and the story of yours is wonderful!

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Thanks for taking the time to share your commments!!
Enjoy your day,
Barb