First things first...We are truly blessed to have the means to set a pretty table and invite our friends to join us for good food and fellowship. I am mindful that many are not so fortunate. My daughter has a passion for the work of the Food Bank. As a singer-songwriter, she has written and recorded a song that is the anthem for the world wide Crop Hunger Walk project. Her song, "Raise Your Voice" is featured in their video. I've included a link in the side margin of my blog. I hope that it will encourage you to support projects in your community that contribute to the effort to overcome hunger.
Sweet Mister shares his Memorial Day birthday with our wonderful son and with our loyal Yorkshire Terrorist. WS couldn't be here, but I understand that my daughter-in-love threw him a neat party. I ask SM if he would like to have a few friends over to celebrate his birthday and the holiday at our house. When he handed me the list of friends that he had invited, it was comprised of more than 50 guests....a few friends...well, you'd have to know him. He wanted to have barbecue catered, which worked great for me. I determined that I would set up the majority of tables on our back porch with a couple of additional tables inside. It was supposed to be a windy and hot day, but the sweet Lord blessed us with just enough wind to provide a lovely, comfortable afternoon and evening for our festivities.
Lots of men on the guest list equals Lots. Of. Meat. Smoked turkey and brisket were served on our old Dansk teak platters. In our neck of the woods, barbecue is always served with plain sliced bread. I've presented the bread in an antique dough bowl. The pair of patriotic Uncle Sam's are actually Santa Claus dolls that I've had for maybe 30 years. The tureen and underplate in the center of the table are Burleigh Ware, "Calico." I bought them during the last hour of an estate sale for $35.00 for both. Woohoo! Instead of flowers, I filled two blue crockery bowls with red apples...simple centerpiece solution.
All the usual suspects that you would always expect to see at a barbecue...The coleslaw and a green salad are served in more old, huge Dansk teak salad bowls. The baked beans are found in a large Heller serving bowl. Do any of you have Heller dishes? I have tons of them from a former lake house. They are a heavy melamine type material. The potato salad is presented in a generously sized Pampered Chef crockery bowl.
Just for the birthday boy, a double chocolate fudge cake and a coconut cake were embellished with fresh raspberries. Other desserts included German Chocolate brownies, lemon squares, and peach cobbler. You won't see me do it very often, but for today, I decided that disposable clear plastic plates for dessert were the perfect choice. I liked that the red and white gingham checked tablecloth, that I made many years ago, added a touch of holiday flair to the tablescape.
Sweet Mister wanted me to use unbreakable dinnerware. I selected the Pottery Barn Outdoor Collection Enamelware, dinner plates. The flatware forks are L'Argent "Sophia." Because we were serving barbecue, I provided paper napkins for our guests...another something that you will rarely see me do. For barbecue, I always try to have at least three napkins per guest.
Five tables awaited our guests on the back porch. Each was draped in a white or light blue tablecloth...
...and anchored with the blue and white jardiniers in which I plant geraniums each summer. The pots are flanked by a pair of "frog jars" filled with sunflowers, hypericum berries, and assorted fresh flowers from Homeland Grocery Store. I bought several inexpensive bouquets and deconstructed them for my floral decoration.
An easy-going touch...just right for a man's birthday party.
The Caspari rattan chargers also added an organic texture that sings of summer and barbecue.
I set two tables inside the house. In the living room, I used the blue and white stripe tablecloth that I made using Sunbrella fabric...
And in the breakfast room, I used a blue and white gingham tablecloth that I also made...
Both of the indoor tables were set with dark brown rattan chargers from WalMart.
Our Memorial Day was definitely memorable! Sweet Mister gathered all of our guests to pray for our soldiers, living and departed, before we began our meal. It was not lost on me that thousands upon thousands of our young men and women sacrificed their own comfort and safety yesterday to insure us a safe environment in which we could spend our afternoon and evening celebrating my love's birthday. I am humbled and grateful for their courage and bravery.
Thank you, yet again, to Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for hosting her magical meme, "Tablescape Thursday. I'll be linking my post to "Tablescape Thursday." Hop on over HERE and check out the myriad of marvelous tablescape designs, after 9:00 pm on Wednesdays. You'll be glad that you made the trip...it's a wonderful adventure.