Friday, January 4, 2019

Here We Go with a Ho Ho Ho! 2018

The Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons seemed to fly by so quickly this year. I've decided to create a Holliday Diary, 2018, for you. This week's entries are photo intensive. Grab a cup of coffee or hot tea and settle into your favorite chair...and thanks for your patience and endurance in advance.  I hope that you enjoy the tables I have to share with you.

Fourteen of us gathered for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. The kids wanted everyone to be seated at one table, so I melded a large oval and large round for a rather unique configuration.

Copper Williams Sonoma hurricanes, a Spode Camilla tureen, and wooden boxes filled with bright Autumn colors meandered the length of the tables...

...joining Vietri amber optic goblets and green AJKA Arabella wines...

with Pier One hammered copper chargers and the Copeland Spode Pink Tower dinner plates  to welcome an enthusiastic and grateful family to the table to share a meal and give thanks to God for the blessings that He pours upon us. After our precious time at the table, dishes were washed and put away, and everything was put back in place because...

...less than a week later, Christmas was in place at our house and it was time for the seasonal entertaining to begin.

December 5...

...I gathered with a small group of friends for our annual Christmas luncheon. I set a table for five at the games table next to the Christmas tree. The pillows at each chair were my Christmas gift to my friends at the table.

The Vietri gold ruffled charger framed the Aynsley Red Imperial dinner plate. Gold toned flatware added to the festive tone of the table.

The antique white and gold octagonal plate was later used for dessert. I acquired it some years ago from Susan @ From My House to Yours. I've so enjoyed using them time and again. 

One of my oldest, my mother-in-love's Rock Sharpe crystal wine goblet, was joined by one of the newest denizens in the crystal cabinet, the Edinburgh King James water goblet. You'll see this lovely several times in my soon to follow blog posts. It's a large stem with excellent balance. It truly dances when set against candlelight.  The gold/cream stripe napkin was a recent birthday gift from my dear friends Guyanne and Barbara. They found the set of 12 napkins at Home Goods. It's lovely.

My centerpiece consisted of a large Waterford red crystal bowl filled with candied fruit. Simple greenery picks created a bed for the bowl which is surrounded by a quartet of four  red mercury glass Christmas trees found last year at a local florist, New Leaf. Cut glass votives, found many years ago at Dollar Tree, completed the design.

 We visited long into the afternoon. 

December 7...

Two days later I hosted another luncheon for dear friends. This day I set a table for four. I was able to move quickly because I used  many of the same elements that I utilized two days earlier.

I did want to share another design in my collection, Christmas Garland by Andrea for Sadek. I found this pattern on eBay. I wanted to share it with you because in case you are wanting to add a Christmas plate to your own stash, this one can be add for extremely reasonable prices. I purchased a good number of them for under $5.00 - $10.00 per dinner plate.

For an additional $60.00, I acquired 12 matching salad plates; that's $5.00 per plate! eBay Tip: The longer a design is listed over and over on eBay, the higher the prices will climb. I've watched this situation develop many times, so if you want to buy a pattern, watch for one that is relatively new to eBay listings. It's the old early bird gets the worm lesson.

I ended up double booking myself on this day. I had another party to attend. Couldn't believe that I did that. When I left, I told my friends to please, stay and enjoy each other's company for as long as they wished. They stayed and visited with each other until almost 5:00 p.m. I just missed them when I returned home again. I hate incompetence, particularly my own. Did you ever schedule two dates with boys on the same night; I did. I thought I had learned from those unfortunate moments. Evidently not. On this day I was without doubt an EGR. Extra Grace Required

December 12...

 If you've been reading my blog for any time...and I've been missing in action for quite some know that I cherish my friends in my Garden Friends Bible Study group. This Wednesday, was the day that I was blessed to gather this precious group of women around my table for food, fun, and fellowship. Today I set a table for 10 in the dining room. Please, join us!

I've been eager to use this hefty silver dome and platter for quite a while. I bought it at a lovely estate sale some time ago. Yes, it held the turkey at our Thanksgiving dinner, on the buffet. Today it anchored my centerpiece design.

The pair of wooden deer (elk?) were found this year at my favorite New Leaf floral shop. You'll see them several more times on my Christmas tables. They make me really happy. Also in the 'make Cherry Kay happy' category...have you noticed all the new Christmas trees gracing assorted tables throughout the house? My childhood friends feted me at a birthday party last month. Each and every one of them gave me a Christmas tree for a birthday present. I'm stealing the idea. Think about it! Bags full of bunnies in the Spring, pumpkins in the Autumn, the possibilities all spell F-U-N to me!

Left to right: The napkins were an eBay find. The napkin ring is actually a candle ring. The silver is my Reed & Barton Grande Renaissance wedding sterling flatware.  The red lacquer was my first ever charger, a gift from a good friend. I've used them for years, The dinner plate was made for Macy's,  Royal Gallery Holly & Ivy. It's new to my collections, and it was bought for a song on eBay. (See previous eBay Tip. Same song, second verse) The Waterford Clarendon Green Serenity goblet was a happy mix with the AJKA Arabella red wine goblet.

Ready to go. Already making plans for two large parties on Sunday, December 16, and Monday, December 17. These two will demand dedicated organization. Tune in for my next entries in my Christmas Entertaining Diary, 2018!

And so, the first week of Christmas entertaining comes to an end.  More to come next time. Thank you so much for taking the time to explore my tables. I'm hopeful that I am going to be able to publish posts more consistently as we go forward. I've really missed hearing from you all, and I've missed spending time studying and enjoying your beautiful blogs, too.

This week I'm joining Susan @ Between Naps on the Porch

Saturday, December 1, 2018

San Francisco Meets Carrie Ann Hall, September, 2018

I am so excited to be included as part of the group of talented, fun, and kind bloggers known as Tales of the Traveling Tote. Today is the first time that I am participating with them. In September, Sweet Mister and I were thrilled to have the opportunity to escape to San Francisco, California, for a few days. I happily loaded my now familiar MacKenzie-Childs Courtly Check tote for our very first adventure as one of the Traveling Totes. My tote is named Miss Carrie Ann Hall, and she has become my constant companion.

Upon landing in San Francisco, Sweet Mister had our driver whisk us across the bay and up into the hills of Mill Valley for lunch at Mountain Home Inn.

The views were breath taking, and...

Carrie Ann selected the perfect table for us.

I enjoyed a delicious lunch of fresh crab cakes, and...

Our waitress was kind enough to take a couple of shots of us with my camera.

After a trip back across the Golden Gate...

 ...our driver drove us through The Golden Gate Park.

  Carrie Ann insisted on stopping by the Ampitheatre.

She couldn't decide if she was better suited as an audience member, or... stage, as a performer. I'm pretty sure she's quite the performer.

Checked into our hotel room...

...we had a neat view of the city. After a short nap, it was time to...

...head to Fisherman's Wharf and... again! This was one of those trips where every time we turned around, it was time to eat again! Worked for me. This night we dined at Fog Harbor Fish House.

Alcatraz could be seen from the window, mysterious and sad.

It was a lovely restaurant with beautiful views, and the food was excellent. Give it a try on your next trip to the City by the Bay. It was a delightful, romantic evening.

Upon leaving the restaurant...

It was obvious that the wharf was just beginning to come to life for the evening. We'd had enough for the day, and we were happy to head back to the hotel for a good night's sleep.

Saturday morning, we actually slept late. Unheard of for Sweet Mister and a treat for me. We headed to downtown San Francisco for an early lunch at Tadich Grill, the oldest restaurant in all of California.

The food was delicious, and the service was impeccable. I highly recommend Tadich Grill. They don't take reservations, and it is perpetually busy. They open at 11:15, and 11:15 on Saturday is one of the best times to find a table available when you enter the door. 

Once we were back at the hotel, our driver picked us up once again and drove us to Palo Alto and Stanford. Our main purpose for coming to San Francisco was to attend the induction ceremony for the Stanford University Athletic Hall of Fame. Sweet Mister's prep school coach was being inducted for his career as golf coach at Stanford University.Sweet Mister and he have been very close for more than 50 years. He deserves a great deal of credit for the man that my Sweet Mister came to be. We adore Coach.

The induction ceremony was held at the beautiful Stanford Performing Arts Center. We had a delightful time.

After the induction, we gathered our things at the hotel and headed for a late flight at the airport. We had to cut our trip short because we were determined to be home for Beatrice Emaline's sixth birthday. It was a delightful trip.  I highly recommend eating your way across San Francisco!

Plus...I left my heart. It's a glorious town.

Remember our delightful MacKenzie-Childs Tote giveaway! Just check in with Jackie @ Purple Chocolat Home to enter and WIN!!!!!

Don't forget to stay up-to-date with us on Instagram: #talesofthetravelingtote

Be sure to stop by to check out the adventures with all of the members at Tales of the Traveling Tote!

Debbie with Miss Aurora @ Mountain Breaths 
Emily with Miss Courtney ChildsThe French Hutch
 Patti with Miss Kenzie @ Pandora's Box
Jenna with Miss Coquille @The Painted Apron
Linda P with Miss Lola @ Life and Linda
Rita with Miss Luna C Panoply 
Sarah with Miss Merri Mac @ Hyacinths for the Soul
Jackie and Miss Madi K @ Purple Chocolat Home
Ricki Jill and Countess De Monet @ The Sketchy Reader
Cherry Kay and Carrie Ann Hall @ Entertaining Women  

Please, stop by and leave a comment. I love to hear from you, and each comment means so much! Thanks for coming by for a visit. Cherry Kay