When I was choosing what to ship to Turkey and what to leave behind I was really struck by how much "stuff" we were leaving behind. I wondered why we needed that stuff in the first place if it was so unimportant that we could do without it for two years. The reality is that when we return to Canada we expect to take up the life we had before and so those things or many of them will be useful once again. And of course it made little sense to ship some things because we would need them before the shipment arrived and so it was simpler to just purchase them here. Towels for example and dishes certainly fit this category. Other items weren't cost effective to ship. For example shipping furniture wouldn't have fit the budget or been practical. So we left somethings at home because it made sense to buy them here.
Sometimes that means a last minute scramble at supper time to wash what is dirty or to replate something in order to serve something else (put the vegis on a plate so the rice will have a bowl). We have two knives, one for chopping and one for bread. We have three serving bowls. We have eight place settings of dinner plates, knives, forks and spoons, and six little paring knives we use for steak. This is more than adequate for our family, but strains our resources when we have company. Sometimes Cam brings a couple of single fellows from the drilling company to join us for supper. The last time they came, one of them brought his new girlfriend. We had just enough dishes to go around, but had to wash forks in order to serve the dessert they brought.