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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Stop By For a Bowl Of Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup



Do you ever long for the opportunity to return to a simpler, low-stress time, when life moved at a slower pace?  When I need to decompress from the madness of life in this new millennium, I like to invite some close friends to join me at the table for a modest bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup, hot bread, and dessert.  It's amazing how time seems to be suspended for a few hours as we share fellowship and a simple meal.  I highly recommend it; a shared meal with friends is good for the soul! 

My huband and I learned long ago that we both live well with blue and white.  As a child, my dolls under the Christmas tree were always dressed in blue, and my sister's dolls were always dressed in pink. My Mama and Daddy understood my affinity for blue long before I did.   The plates are Burleigh Blue Willow, an English Transferware that is still available on the secondary market.  They are one of my sets of 'everyday dishes,' and we've had them for many years.  We use them regularly.  This set was a gift, over a period of several birthdays and Christmas holidays, from my mother-in-love.  She would ask me what I wanted her to start for me 'next,' and it was usually a set of wonderful dishes. She couldn't have given me a better gift!

For a simple, 'come on over for lunch,' get together, I try to keep my centerpiece somewhat simplified.  I often use a large tureen in the center of the table in lieu of a floral centerpiece.  Crystal decanters placed in several spots on the table are perfect for wine, water, or tea.  Guests are comfortable pouring refills for themselves.  Placemats also add to the relaxed ambience.  These are Royal Fieldcrest, and I bought them for pennies in an eBay auction.  Yay, eBay!

The multi-colored wine goblets are AJKA 'Arabella.' I bought twelve many years ago at Tuesday Morning Mall, and I wish that I had bought more.  They are very versatile.  The crystal goblets are Cash Crystal, 'Sutton Place.'  I bought them for a song on eBay.  They are quite large, and they work well for water, tea, or a great huge glass of wine.  The candlesticks are my old friends, the Val St. Lambert.

 A couple of bundles of yellow tulips plopped in the blue & white export fish bowls add a pop of contrasting color, while fulfilling my goal to 'keep it simple!'  You can never go wrong with tulips.  Did you know that you can poke a small hole (think toothpick) through the stem, just below the blossom, and the tulip will remain upright, instead of drooping?  I was a very happy camper when I learned that trick.  

I saw a picture of Hungarian painted eggs in a book.  I immediately decided, "I can do that!"  I went to Michael's and bought several sacks of artificial eggs.  The shells look and feel authentic, but they have a kind of foam interior.  I mounted them on a skewer, stuck them in foam to hold them still and started painting. I used acrylic paints, and I finished them with a coat of satin finish varnish.  I've used them a number of times. I think that they'll last for years!  I liked them with the Lalique Roosters that once belonged to Nana, my husband's grandmother. The white napkins were purchased on clearance at Pier One.  I tied them with assorted patterns of blue and white ribbons and placed them just above the Reed & Barton Grande Renaissance silver.  The reticulated compotes were an inexpensive purchase from Hobby Lobby.

The soup's ready.  I've about decided to switch to a clear crystal wine glass.  Hmm.  What do you think?  This one is part of my wedding crystal, Lalique, Treves.  Come, take a seat, please.  I'd love for you to sit right next to me, and we can get to know each other better...and plan a beautiful table together.  Such fun!

13 comments:

Bill said...

You're obviously a lady who knows how to serve a bowl of chicken noodle soup in high style! I love the first image -- the sepia tones really give your classic setting a feeling of timelessness.

If these are some of your "everyday" dishes ... well, I can hardly wait for you to show us your holiday best! Your mother-in-love must have been a very thoughtful, caring person. It's so sweet that you refer to her that way. She must have been very pleased that her son married a young lady of refinement and taste!

The eggs you painted are fantastic! I like both the colorful and the clear wine glasses, but I think you're probably right about switching to the clear -- so beautiful! I didn't know the trick about keeping tulips from drooping. Although I sort of like it when they drape themselves this way and that, I'll definitely file your tip away for future reference!

Hope the rest of your week goes well.

Kindest regards,
Bill

Nancy said...

I agree completely with Bill. That first sepia toned photo really caught my eye, but then they all did.
I don't think you can ever go wrong with blue and yellow.
I had never heard the tulip trick either. Thank you for sharing that with us.
I can't tell you how badly I want to get to Michael's for some of those eggs. Did you buy them recently or around Easter? I just love the way you painted them. Simply gorgeous!
What a lovely home you have. I'd love to have chicken noodle soup, hot bread and dessert at your table. I love, love, love English transferware.
Isn't it a small world? It made me happy to hear you're in the same town, or very close to where I live. ;-)
Thank you for adding my button to your sidebar...I am so flattered.

Nancy

Tricia@The Dull and the Dutiful said...

Oh, this table is breathtaking! LOVE the blue and white, of course, but those placemats! Those multicolored wineglasses! What a feast for the eyes! I'm glad I found your blog today!

SPLENDEROSA said...

I agree as well. You've done a fine job with this post & I love blue & white. Cannot believe you painted those eggs. Bravo!

Julio said...

Wow. I love the room, the sideboard, the chandelier,the pair of oils by the kitchen entrance,the dining chairs,set of silver on the sideboard,the Ajka crystal,the English transferware,the Cash crystal stemware,the painted eggs,the crisp linen napkins,the napkin rings,the glass hutch that I can see through the beautiful mirror above the sideboard,all the candlestick holders,the tureen,the flatware,the layered blue and white placemats,the gorgeous Lalique roosters,the decanter and the wainscoting. Everything else is just ok. A woman after my own heart. Looking forward to my next visit with you.

Sue (Someone's Mom) said...

This is stunning! I always love to see yellow used to accent blue and tulips are one of my favorites. I am amazed that you painted the eggs...they were the first thing I noticed on the table, beautiful. Thank you for your visit today and your kind words, please visit again.

Sue

Laura said...

Oh my gosh.
When I found your blog a minute ago, I started smiling.
I am a blue and white fanatic.
Your table is wonderful-
I am now a follower, and I will be back!

Stop by if you can- I have a tablescape right now as well.

Laura
White Spray Paint

emptynester3 said...

Very nice- it is always the presentation that matters no matter what you serve! Very special! Thanks for visiting! Love, ~Nana~

Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) said...

Cherry Kay, Welcome to Tablescape Thursday! I adore this beautiful tablescape! Blue and White is so classic and one of my favorite combinations. How wonderful to dine on this gorgeous china everyday...now that is living life to the fullest...it's wonderful! What a delightful MIL...I hope to be that kind of MIL, too. :-) I didn't know that tip about the tulips...fascinating. I like for some of them to droop, but not all of them...so I'm filing that tip away for future use. The eggs you painted are gorgeous...little works of art!
XO
Susan

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Oh My! A girl after my heart! I love a b/w table, and yours is stunning! (My sister was a year younger than me, and always got the pink gift, and I got the blue - how funny that it was that way in your family too). Your blue and white china, soup tureen and the compotes are beautiful, and I can't believe you painted those beautiful eggs. I'm in love with your buffet (oh, and your d.r. chairs too). The yellow tulips are the perfect touch. It wouldn't matter what you served me at this table, I'd love just sitting here, soaking in the beauty. laurie

Johanna said...

Cherry Kay, me too want to say you, how perfect everything is. You are so talented to set a nice table and decorate rooms. Everything is just perfect. I love the blue white combination and you added so many nice details, it is really a beautiful table - not only this, it is a beautiful room. Thank you for sharing your wonderful ideas, I am a new follower and very curious of the next visits. Wish you a wonderful week and thank you for stopping at my blog and your sweet comment.
Greetings, Johanna

Johanna said...

Hello, I am speachless about the splendor of your table. The blue is a perfect basic for all the crystal things. I love how the beautiful chandelier is playing with the stemware and this adorable Lalique rousters. Really, really gorgeous. I am a new follower of your blog.
Thank you for your kind visit and your sweet comment.
Greetings, Johanna

The Tablescaper said...

I am having sooooo much fun exploring your blog and getting to know you! I too LOVE blue and white. Johnson Bros. Britain Castles are my everyday. It's funny though, I've realized that I don't tend to blog about my blue and white that much. I'll have to remedy that.

You were so lucky to have such a thoughtful mother in law. I'll have to remember the concept of: what do you want me to start you on next, when I become a mother in law. My Mom finished off my Waterford through the first couple of events after I was married.

I too love chicken soup and thankfully my daughter loves mine, but I have to admit I don't think I've ever used it for entertaining. If I have a pot on and someone stops by they almost always have a cup or bowl full. I've sent it over to those not feeling well. I almost always have some frozen for when I'm not feeling well. I'll have to add it to my entertaining menu!

Your table is magnificent. As the owner of much blue and white, I think the part I like best are the placemats. They are so simple yet elegant. A great find. Speaking of finds, you seem to so well at Tuesday Mornings. You refer to it as Tuesday Morning Mall. Is it different or is yours just in a mall? There isn't one very close to me and I've never had much luck, but seeing all of your finds will make me try again. And my preference is definately the clear glasses for this magnificent tablescape.

Looking forward to seeing more of your beautiful works of art!

- The Tablescaper