These mugs are wonderful. Top-quality in every way. We have several of Mara's mugs and I am always on the lookout for more. The designs are folk-art, and have so much character. They are part of the mug, with real dimensions. The outlines feel hand-carved and the glazes appear hand-applied (whether they are or not is another story). The glaze finish is matte so hands don't slip on the surface easily. They hold a nice-sized serving of coffee, hot chocolate, or tea - whatever you'd like. Because of the thickness of the stoneware, they retain the heat well so that drink stays nice and warm. These cups are very durable and have withstood years of service without chipping or breaking. The handle is a great plus - it fits the size of the cup well, and people with big hands actually enjoy using these mugs, because they can use the handle to hold the mug. For those with smaller hands, or those who love to cuddle a warm drink there is plenty of room to slip your hand in between the mug and the handle. That nice gap makes this the go-to mug when we are wearing gloves and want to have a quick sip of something warm after we've been outdoors in the cold and don't want to deglove. Children should be able to manage the mug because they are easy to grasp through that handle, and the thickness of the stoneware keeps the outside of the mug from getting too hot. The cup is a bit on the heavy side, but easy to hold because of the versatility of the handle. Make sure you have room in your home for these mugs because once you own a couple of these you are going to want more! One caution -Do not use this item in the microwave - the mug can handle the process no problem, but the cup gets too hot to drink from right away.