I can't tell you how much I have been enjoying this warm weather here in Mexico. We've opened all the windows in the hallways that connect with the courtyard and it's wonderful to feel the fresh air inside.
One of the reasons we built such a large home was because we wanted a place where friends and family could meet for lunches, parties, receptions, even church-related meetings, so when my friend mentioned that we should have a luncheon for another friend who was having a birthday, I jumped on it. I quickly suggested we have it at my house and began fantasizing about what dishes I would use, how many places I would set and where I would send the twins.
There's a wonderful woman who I can call when I need extra help, so I knew that it would be no problem to have the luncheon the next day, even though my house was a mess. The kids could help with the babies, she could help with the sweeping, dusting and such and I could prepare the food and set the table. Several hours later, however, I sat bolt upright when I realized that we would be having the luncheon on Cinco de Mayo! No one would want to work on this most celebrated of Mexican holidays, so I was to be on my own. To top it off, I remembered I had scheduled an appointment with my doctor in the big town for some routine blood work (related to being a vegan, about which I will report later), so that left even less time to accomplish the necessary tasks.
As luck would have it, the twins woke me up at 6:30 in the morning, so I was able to shower, dress, and assign, in writing, tasks to all the kids to finish while I was gone. I don't know if you find it ridiculous when I blog their chores, but I'm going to anyway. Some feedback on that would be nice.
The 14-year-old girl:
-Clean the kitchen and declutter the counters (I requested that she just please try to remember where she put the clutter for later reference)
-Bake "The-Best-Chocolate-Cake-in-the-World-That-Just-Happens-to-be-Vegan" and set it out on racks to cool (for the recipe, click HERE)...
The 12-year-old boy:
-Clean, sweep and mop the courtyard and the kitchen entrance sidewalks
The 9-year-old boy:
-Clean the living room, including putting away all of the clothes on hangers on the sofa
-Clean all of the large stainless steel appliances with Windex
The 7-year-old girl:
-Clean and sweep the entryway
-Clean the formal living room
When we arrived home about an hour before the luncheon was to start, everything was almost done. I did struggle a bit with the 12-year-old boy on his quality of work, but he made up for it by making some really great guacamole dip.
Now...the reason for this post....
I decided to set up a table out in the courtyard (which is not quite finished as you will see) as the weather has been perfect and there is a sandbox in the corner in case anyone brought their kids. I set a table for eight, then brought out four tall bar chairs and lined them up in a semi-circle next to the table to use as overflow.
Here's how it turned out...
The plates are pieces I inherited from my grandfather. To him, they were just his everyday, refried beans and tortilla plates, but to me, they are priceless and only to be used on special occasions. The bowls and glasses were given to me by my mother-in-law. They originally came from Guaralahara. The clear glasses were purchased at Big Lots, and the napkins and silverware were purchased at Sam's in the restaurant supply section. I love that section!
As a centerpiece, I used three different colors of geraniums we had just purchased that morning at our favorite nursery in the big town. I know, it was a little large and I ended up moving it after we all sat down, but I had to do something!
As a side note, this talavera tile in the background is some of my favorite tile on the property...
The table I used was actually two camping tables pushed together, so I had to use three table cloths to cover it up. My favorite is this pink shawl I actually purchased from an authentic Indian vendor in a kiosk in the mall. It is laid over a very Mexican tablecloth I purchased at, who would have known, Walmart...
Below is on of my very favorite pitchers in all the world. I bought it at Ross. Actually, when my mother saw it, she bought it, because I told her that even though there was only one, she could have it because I really didn't want it that bad. Yes, I had purchased the appetizer plate and bowl that went with it, but that was okay. She could have it. I really didn't want it. Really. Okay, true confession time. Every time I looked at the pitcher in her living room, displayed with the extra appetizer plate and bowl set she had also purchased, I coveted like a banshee. And every time I went to Ross, I looked for one of those pitchers to go with my set, but I could never find another one. It was only $12, but still, it was so perfect!
One day we were sitting in her living room after my dad died. She looked over at the pitcher, appetizer plate and bowl and said, "You know, Jen, those really never did go very well in this house. Why don't you take them?" Finally! I agreed that they never did go well and that they would look much better in my house. And doesn't the pitcher work out well?...
Although I think the table is gorgeous set like this...
I think it looks much better like this...
...and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it because John took the five youngest to the big town for lunch and Mexican popsicles. Thanks, John! Love you!
I am pleased to list this post at...
Between Naps on the Porch's "Tablescape Thursday"
The Apron Queen's "Vintage Thingies Thursday".
Go to these blogs and check out everyone else's stuff! You're going to love it!
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