...family, friends, home and other tidbits of a blessed life

Saturday, May 24, 2014

A 2014 update

It's been a long, long time since I last posted. It hasn't even been that busy a year. Time just got away from me and I lost my blog voice. I'm back and I'll certainly post more frequently. Although, I won't  be joining blog parties. Working full time, being a discussion group leader for our evening Bible Study Fellowship class, family, friends and our yard just don't allow for that much time on a computer. Besides, I spend my days computing, so it's nice to keep the nights "off-line".

In February we took a trip to Ruidoso, NM. Mr. CJ won an all expense paid trip to stay at the Inn of the Mountain Gods from his employer way back when. So we decided a quick weekend away was in order. Perfect for our 40th Valentine's Day together. We are such saps!! LOL. 

Although not the most elaborately put together table I've ever done, the guest of honor was beside herself with glee. Our precious middle granddaughter Zoë has always loved the color purple. Shamefully this grandmother had no purple dishes, glasses, linens. Nary one stitch of purple was to be found in this house. So what was she to do? Ebay! Sweet Cherry Kay from Entertaining Women blog pointed me in the right direction. Copeland Spode Mayflower came home in droves. I only had 2 weeks to pull this off. You would be surprised how many dishes you can buy and have them all arrive in time. Dinner plates, salad/dessert plates, bread and butter plates. Now to find some bowls and serving pieces. Zoë has her first set of dishes! She's also be getting the Old Company Plate Signature silverplate. It goes so perfectly with the dishes.  When I told Zoe that these were hers, she was really overjoyed. Surprised even me. However, since she's entering first grade next year, I still have many years to enjoy these.

For the centerpiece, I pulled out a white Hutschenreuter tureen, filled it with purple petunias still in their plastic pots, stuffed a bit of purple crinkle filler grass around the edges and had a centerpiece done in minutes. Later Zoë got to take the plants home and plant them in her yard.

April. I never tire of Wisteria. It's always a big joy to find the first glint of purple showing from the vines. 

By the end of the month, the vines are covered in green and the planting, mulching, pruning, has begun in the yard. I had an abundance of tulips that bloomed this year. Not so many last year. Wonder what made the difference.

May usually brings on the first summer event. It's still cool enough to enjoy being outdoors. By June we are usually roasting! Even in the evenings. I set a simple table for our annual wine and cheese party. White runner, jars for vases, black flatware, black napkins encased in a wine cork napkin ring. Two wine bottles were filled with citronella oil and a bottle wick. I found the bottle wicks on amazon.

After filling your empty bottle with citronella oil, drop the topper with attached wick into the bottle and allow the oil to saturate the wick. The large "sleeves" came from Pottery Barn a couple of years ago.

The napkin rings were a breeze to make. I got into our "stash" of corks and pulled about 30 of them. I had seen them done somehere where they had drilled a hole right through the cork. Telling Mr. CJ I needed a drill press for a dinner party got a. very. strange. look. So I found some tiny eyelets and screwed one into each cork end. Then I looped a length of twine through the eyelet and tied the corks onto the napkins. Seriously, 5 dollars for eyelets, had the twine and corks, and about 90 minutes.

 We are still enjoying the candle holders on the fence. They are magical at night. Like fairy lights twinkling.

Of course we count it a blessing when our friends enjoy themselves at our home. 
We've got another dinner party planned for next weekend. We are getting some very much needed rain in Lubbock right now (day two of the sky falling) so all last minute stuff will really be last minute! 

I'll leave you with what looks like a January sun rise. A beautiful sky.


Debbie said...

What a treat to check in on my dashboard just now and see a post from you! I am exactly like you in that I lost my blog voice and can't seem to get it back. I have precious little time to spend on the computer right now, too.

I love the wine bottles turned into citronella burners! I need to try that. I also love the corks used as napkin rings.

I do hope to see more of you this summer, which means that you will have to post... and I will have to be better about visiting blogs.

Welcome back!

RhondaBuss said...

Welcome back and what a beautiful sunset :)

Dianne said...

Marlis, I was so happy to see a post from you! I know what you mean about finding the time to blog. I have decreased my time on-line too. I love that you bought the dishes with gifting them to your grand daughter in mind. One day, she may be blogging along side you setting beautiful tables. Have a great holiday weekend and looking forward to seeing you on line occasionally. Dianne

ellen b. said...

So nice to hear what's up with you and see some lovely photos of your goings on...

Barbara F. said...

So happy to see a post! I see you on Pinterest from tome to time. Looks like you are having a wonderful 2014. How nice to start your granddaughter off with a beautiful set of dishes at such a tender age. xo

Barbara F. said...

So happy to see a post! I see you on Pinterest from tome to time. Looks like you are having a wonderful 2014. How nice to start your granddaughter off with a beautiful set of dishes at such a tender age. xo

Scribbler said...

I see you on FB, and your posts often make me laugh.

Nice to see you here, too. I don't spend nearly as much time online as I used to, either.

Sarah said...

Marlis, what a treat to see this post pop up on my sidebar. Welcome! I hear you about time spent on the computer. I'm spending less time these days. I'd rather work in the garden, read a book, or take a walk. I still try to post once a week, but have to push myself to do that.
I smiled at the beautiful Mayflower dishes. Love that pattern! No doubt that Zoe was thrilled. How fun to have a gorgeous set of dishes in your favorite color bought just for you. Happy Birthday to Zoe!
Sending hugs of friendship………Sarah

Rettabug said...

Lovely photos of both the tables & the scenery, Marlis!
I, too, took a little bloggy break & it is amazing how fast the time flies. Interesting that we both decided to start posting on the same day. LOL
I'm glad you're back...I always love to see what you've been up to.


Patti @ Pandoras Box said...

welcome back! A break is certainly needed now and then…life gets in the way and we can also get "bloggers block" so easily! I enjoyed catching up with you…and lucky Zoe-what a great treasure she has waiting for her when she grows up!

Pat Cantwell said...

Oh, dear friend, I absolutely loved this post. Almost a month~in~review!!! I agree, you do keep busy. . .and more so when one is still employed!
Welcome back to The Land of Blog. You've been sorely missed!

Rosemary and Thyme said...

Miss your visits Marlis but I can certainly understand. I have a full time job also and find it very difficult to keep with my blog often. You are a true inspiration my dear Marlis. Welcome back.


Judy Biggerstaff said...

Hi Marlis, I think many of us are in the same boat with not as much time to blog. I always enjoy seeing what you are doing. Take care.

Maria C said...

Hi, Marlis: I'm glad I stopped by and saw your post. I, too, had lost my blogging voice for a while with everything that's been happening at home. Working full time does limit one's hours, but I'm determined to come back and post now and then. I've found I really miss the process. It was great to see what you've been up to. What a lovely thought to acquire those dishes with your granddaughter in mind! They are beautiful! Take care, Maria

Maria C said...

Marlis, I had a dream about you last night. One minute I was deeply asleep, and the next I was wondering if you were going to embroider some special napkins to go with these new dishes! The linens have always been my favorite part of your tables. I'm looking forward to another table with these dishes as you develop your "purple" phase . . .

Entertaining Women said...

Zoe's party was perfect. Your table was perfectly age appropriate for her! The gardens in our city are amazing this summer. I think that it was because we had a bonafide cold cold winter...and lots of rain this spring. KC planted 20 azaleas in May, and they are already blooming...unbelievable! They must be happy happy plants. Thanks for inviting us for a peek. I've been hit and miss this spring, too. I do want to continue with my posting because I want to keep up with all the wonderful people that I've met...like you! Cherry Kay

Kathleen said...

Hi Marlis, just popping in to say hi. I don't spend much time blogging these days either, time just gets away from me. Hope you are having a good summer! Love the set of dishes for your gd, I only have one gd and 4 gsons. I don't know they would want dishes, so I have to think what I would give them. My mom always gave things to her gd's but not the gsons , not fair. I vowed I would be mindful of that! It is hard though!

Chubby Chieque said...

Hi Maam Marlis,

Such a great treasure.

Hope you had an awesome summer.

Happy weekend ahead.

Photography classes San Francisco said...

nice post...

xinex said...

I am glad you are back, Marlis. I have missed your posts. What a lovely party for your granddaughter and how generous of you to already assign those exquisite plates to her. I have started doing that cause John is retiring and we plan to move back to FL and have to sell and empty the Natchez home. What a lovely sky your last picture showed...Chrostine


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