Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Sunday Night Supper

My tablescape this week features the everyday china I chose after my 25th wedding anniversary. I figured after 25 years with the same husband, I deserved new everyday dishes!  The pattern is Windsor Park, and I purchased it at a Mikasa outlet in Oregon about twelve years ago.  I really like the bright, cheerful pattern.  Here's the gravy boat, along with some pretty orange alstroemeria in a yellow vase.

I've used these dishes most often with blue placemats and napkins, but last weekend I picked up some yellow and orange placemats and orange napkins at Crate and Barrel in Austin.  We were there attending a nephew's wedding, but managed to fit in a little recreational shopping!  Here's the dinner plate with the new table linens and our everyday stainless, Towle Beaded Antique. 

Here I've added the rimmed soup bowl to the setting.

Here's a closer look at the pattern, which includes stylized oranges, pears, and pineapples with the blue vines. Yes, that's me you can see reflected upside down in the spoon!

I also picked up some bright orange salad plates at Crate and Barrel, so tried those with the dinner plates.  I think they're a bit TOO bright, but they were great for the margarita pie we had for dessert! 

Here I tried layering the cobalt blue Fiesta bowl to tone down the orange a bit.

Here's a bird's eye view.

Here's a look at the whole table, set for Sunday night supper.  We usually have my father-in-law over on Sunday nights, and last week we served smoked brisket and sausage, pinto beans, mock potato salad (Paula Deen's Warm Potato Salad made with cauliflower instead of potatoes), and homemade carrot yeast rolls.

One more close-up!

Thanks for visiting my Sunday night supper table!  Please also stop by Susan's Between Naps on the Porch to see some beautiful tablescapes.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Wedgwood Potpourri

This week for Tablescape Thursday at Susan's Between Naps on the Porch I have set a breakfast table with Wedgwood's Potpourri pattern. My father-in-law recently moved into an independent living community and gave me (among many other beautiful things) these dishes I have admired for years. 

Today I've paired the Potpourri with my blue heart-shaped covered ramekins (found on clearance at the Le Creuset outlet in Destin last fall).  The blue-stemmed glasses are for juice, and I'm using dark blue placemats and blue-checked napkins, as well as my silver, Lunt's Belvedere.

Here's a close-up of the Potpourri pattern.  I love the shape of the plates, as well as the design.

Here's the host's view.  For a simple centerpiece, I placed pink and white alstroemeria in a mostly blue and white pitcher I blogged about last month for Table Top Tuesday at Marty's A Stroll Thru Life.  You can see the little floral design inside the coffee cup in this shot. 

Here's a better view of the sugar and creamer.

Here's one more view of the table, in which you can see the flowers a bit better.  I like the morning light in this photo.

Thanks for visiting my breakfast table!  Please also stop by Susan's Between Naps on the Porch to see some beautiful tablescapes.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Cut-glass Family Heirloom

For this week's Table Top Tuesday at Marty's A Stroll Thru Life I am showing a beautiful cut-glass platter that belonged to my husband's great-aunt.  She had an enormous collection of cut glass stored in glass cabinets that lined her living and dining rooms.  After she died, her children kept some pieces, and the rest went to antique dealers.  A few years later, my in-laws were browsing in an antique shop and spotted this piece, which they recognized from her collection.  They purchased it and enjoyed it for many years.  My mother-in-law passed away two years ago, and my father-in-law has just moved into an independent living apartment, so he gave us this stunning piece.

The photo hardly does it justice -- there must be a knack to photographing cut glass!  The design is incredibly detailed, and when the sun shines into my dining room in the afternoons, there are rainbows everywhere!  Here's another shot that might be a bit better. 

Is it a platter?  A shallow bowl?  I need to learn more about cut glass!  To give you an idea of the size of the piece, here it is in the center of my dining room table.

Needless to say, we are thrilled to be the third generation to own this remarkable heirloom!  Thank you for stopping by -- and don't forget to go see all the wonderful table tops at Marty's A Stroll Thru Life.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Mama's Fostoria Royal-Amber

When my sisters and I were in Little Rock visiting my parents a few weeks ago, we set the table for a simple family dinner with some of Mama's beautiful Fostoria Royal-Amber.  This pattern was manufactured from 1925 to 1933, according to, and from what I've read, it's classified as "elegant glass" (as opposed to Depression glass). My paternal grandparents received a complete service for eight, along with many other pieces, as wedding gifts in 1927.  Grandma passed it all along to my mother when I was a little girl, and Mama has enjoyed using it for many luncheons and meetings over the years.

Here's another view of the table, which includes candlesticks made by a family friend and a footed bowl of decorative balls as the centerpiece.

As you can see, it's difficult to photograph this etched pattern -- I've read that amber glassware is the most difficult to photograph.  Next time I'm in Little Rock I'll try to stage it to show the pattern better, as well as more of the different pieces.  For this family supper, we used only dinner plates and iced tea glasses, plus Mama's everyday stainless flatware and casual table linens.

In addition to the dinner service for eight, Mama has platters and vegetable bowls, several types of glasses -- parfait, low sherbet, iced tea, water, two types of tumblers -- as well as a footed cream and sugar, footed covered candy dish, two sets of salt and peppers, and a compote. 

Here's one more view, after we changed the centerpiece to these stunning daffodils.  (These photos were taken in March.)

Thanks for visiting, and please also stop by Susan's Between Naps on the Porch to see some beautiful tablescapes.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Fun and Foot Surgery

I haven't posted in a while because I've been recovering from foot surgery to correct a hereditary bunion problem.  My doctor is much more conservative than the one I had twenty-odd years ago when the first foot was fixed, insisting that I bear no weight on the foot for five weeks!  Luckily, my sister suggested I look into a knee scooter, so I rented one from  It arrived the day after I rented it online -- great service!  It is SO much better than crutches, which are awkward at best.  Plus, there's the cool factor -- everyone who sees it wants to try it out!  My grandchildren have especially enjoyed it.

In case any readers are considering foot surgery, here are a few tips I've discovered to make recovery a bit smoother:

Before the surgery
  • Obtain a bench and a hand-held sprayer for the bathtub.  This arrangement makes it possible to bathe without help (although you may want a "spotter" the first time or two). 
  • Test-drive getting up and down from the toilet using only one leg and your arms.  My master bathroom is not set up to make this easy, and I wish we'd rented some sort of apparatus to provide support.  You may find that one of your bathrooms is more accessible.
  • Plan to have someone with you all the time the first week or so.  My sister flew in from Nashville for the first few days, and my daughter drove up from Houston for several days when my husband had to be out of town.  
  • Plan to have plenty of reading material -- and a laptop, if possible -- to entertain yourself. I think introverts like me have an easier time with the enforced isolation!
  • Obtain a bedtray for meals the first couple of weeks.  
  • Buy some cute new pajamas!  Having fresh pajamas to change into that first week was a blessing!  
  • Fill prescriptions for pain pills and obtain a temporary handicapped hang tag for the car.
After the surgery
  • The first week or ten days, keep the foot elevated above your heart and get up only to visit the bathroom. 
  • Ice the foot (I used bags of frozen peas) for 30 minutes every two hours that first week.  I followed this advice and have had virtually no pain or swelling of the foot.
  • Practice using the scooter until you feel confident with it before attempting an outing. 
  • If your surgery is on the right foot, as mine was, plan to be chauffeured around for a long time.  I'm at four weeks post-op now and still unable to drive.
  • Appreciate your caregivers!  Mine have been wonderful, taking on all my household responsibilities for the duration.  I think my husband has a better idea of what I do around the house now that he's doing it all!  I'm sure he's also tired of moving my scooter into and out of the car trunk, but he hasn't complained.
  • When you are able to return to work, plan a way to keep your foot elevated most of the day.  My job is very sedentary, so I was able to return two weeks after surgery.  The only accommodation I've needed was to move my laptop to a table so I could keep my foot propped in a chair.
Those are all the tips I can think of for now.  It has been a long four weeks, and I have one more week of non-weight-bearing, but I look forward to being able to walk without pain soon. I'm also looking forward to taking a shower!  Baths are better than nothing, but that first shower will be a long one, I'm sure!