As a result of the wonderful Maths tutor visiting us we can now use the dining room to actually eat it. Last night we sat down to some disappointing sausages (considering they were advertised as 'finest'), hash browns and baked beans. We had actual conversation and the condiments weren't shoved all over the place.
Our dining room and kitchen are in what used to be the cellar. It makes it snug in winter, cool in summer but there is a tendency towards damp and the light isn't good. We started eating upstairs in the living room when bear was a newborn as I didn't want to carry him down the steep steps to the dining room - and they are steep! Then father came to live with us and the stairs were definitely too much for him. Since then I have been failing to catch up, but I am getting closer. It felt good to eat in the dining room again.
I did notice that the condiments in the plastic box looked limp.
They were in a plastic box to keep them roughly together and to stop the acid from the vinegar, ketchup etc staining stuff. It didn't look glamorous. I started planning my shopping. I could look on eBay and see what was around. It couldn't be a metal tray to hold them, as vinegar and ketchup are acidic. There is an urban myth going around about a convict using ketchup to eat through the iron bars of his cell. I know it is a myth, but I also knew that a metal tray wouldn't stay good for long. Besides, with all the best intentions, I would never polish it. I was doubtful about wood as I was concerned it would stain, though I could always embroider a cloth. Then reality hit. I had a nice plate that I could use.
I've always been fond of this plate and resisted throwing it out even though I don't really use it. Except now I do. So I have a nice place to put the condiments, a use for a plate, and I even got to do some window shopping.