Thursday, December 29, 2011

R & R Weekend Party

What did you do this weekend to rest and revive (R & R) your hard-working and creative self?

In and Out My Nest will host a new blog party each week called R & R Weekend.  Please  JOIN ME  to discover how creative bloggers rest & revive their spirits on the weekend. 
R & R Weekend Party

R & R Weekend Blog Party

Please link up and share your inspiring ideas - table designs, movie or book reviews, outings to fabulous places, or a written or photographic reflection.  Let's make 2012 a year of inspiring and revitalizing weekends!  Join me each Saturday afternoon at 5 pm to link up to this party.  First party, New Years Weekend!

R & R Weekend Party

Here's what I'm planning for my R & R New Year's Eve Weekend:

First, we've invited two special people that we always celebrate with on New Year's Eve.  We start with our signature Eggnog Martini's (recipe to follow), and then go to Giovanni's Ristorante for their New Year's Dinner and Party.

 The tall vase/candle holder is a purchase that I thought was going to be maybe 12" tall.  When it arrived and I saw how HUGE it was, I wondered if I would ever use it.  Who knew it would be perfect for a New Year's party?!  The beads are from the Rideau Vineyard, our friends favorite winery in Santa Ynez, California.
 New Year's is all about the time, so I wanted a clock center stage.  Found this one at Home Goods in October.  Have you noticed that HG is waaaayyyy ahead of the seasons?  And you better buy it when you see it or it will be gone. Loved this one because of the bird on top. It's all about the bird theme.
 Watchful eye of Bella and Ruby.  They are so excited about NYE.  Really.

 Cocktail shaker is a vintage shaker from the 1940's, my favorite period.  So black and white Hollywood.
 The big martini glasses were purchased for New Year's Eve, last year at Z Gallerie.  So glam,  fragile, and HUGE (proceed with caution....Egg Nog Martinis go down easy and then BAM!)

My favorite (and only) sister gave me these napkin rings for my birthday.  Love them!  Went back to Z Gallerie and tried to buy more, but they were all sold out. 
Wedding china, Royal Doulton Sarabande salad plates, waiting for appetizers. Hmmm, wonder what I'll make?  Ideas?  Please send me an emergency email!

Grande Renaissance Sterling by Reed & Barton, wedding silver from beloved Grandparents, Orla & Ruby Jenks, purchased at Bullocks (remember Bullocks?). At the time, I worked there and got the discount!  Even so, this was a lovely and generous gift!

Egg Nog Martinis

1 part Egg Nog
1 part Baileys or Emmetts
1 part Vanilla Vodka

Shake with ice
Grate nut meg on top

Happy New Year!  May 2012 bring peace, joy and prosperity to all!

Love and hugs,

BTW - CJ (when I started teaching, I signed my notes CJF and the CJ stuck, so I went with it) stands for Catherine Jo (my given name-Mom said it would look good on a door someday, and all I've done is shorten it, but it is on my stationary), or CathyJo (high school name), but my husband calls me Cathy.  It's complicated.

Monday, December 26, 2011

White & Black Classic Christmas

Thanks to my blogland buddies sending me suggestions (especially the ever talented Cherry Kay of Entertaining Ladies), my Christmas day table received great reviews from my beloved family (of course they are my family....).  I had a blast reading your comments about which tablescape would make the cut for Christmas day, and then shopping to find the last minute details.  I'm happy with the results. Thanks again for all your encouraging and inspiring comments.  Cherry Kay, you are a bossy, but exceptionally talented and generous lady!

Message below from Cherry Kay prompted me to search for black chargers and plaid ribbon. Southern California doesn't have the renowned Hobby Lobby, but we do have 99 Cent stores, where I found enough chargers (but had to visit 6 different stores...totally worth it!) Now I have twenty fabulous black charger to use in a plethora of ways in 2012.

 Oops! didn't realize I used different silver patterns on this setting.

Entertaining Women comment:

Now you need to know that I can be biit bossy. Mama used to say, "Nobody likes a bossy little girl." And I would reply, "But Mama, they'll like me.". That said, I think that you should definitely go with the white elements and those glorious hydrangeas. But how about amending it all with black charger plates and a touch of plaid ribbon in your centerpiece and as napkin rings. Black chargers can be found at Hobby Lobby for $1.99 each...if you have a Hobby Lobby. All white will be gorgeous, too with silver & crystal to add a touch if shine. I'm excited to see your final result. Merry Christmas! Cherry Kay 

I love bossy girls, and am one myself!

I love the classic simplicity of the black and white with accents of silver and candlelight.

 Fireplace in the dining room, bedecked with Christmas morning stockings.
Along the way, I sent Cherry Kay an update, and she wrote back with even more ideas!

Okay, I'm liking it a lot!  I like the silver/grey napkins, too. I think that it's going to be a very sophisticated design, and the plaid ribbon is going to add just the right mix of masculine and whimsy that's going to make the men feel really comfortable at the table. Such fun to see the process; I'm excited to see where you go from here. A thought: pull some of the greenery into the plaid ribbon "napkin ring." Will help keep the eye moving across the design...will be a good balance technique.

How smart is she?!
 The hallway mirror used for the centerpiece need wax cleaning from the dripping candles, but it didn't take long with a razor blade.

No amount of coaxing could get the one candle to stay upright (melting wax into the holder or melting the end of the candle), so I just gave up and went for a less-than-perfect look to make everyone feel more comfortable......Ok, I gave up, period.

The large stockings were embroidered for my two boys twenty years ago by their grandmother.  I purchased the boot stockings for their future wives one year when I saw them at Pier 1 and feel in love, but in comparison to the size of the others, they are unfairly inadequate, so I may have to purchase or make new ones for my wonderful daughter-in-laws.  The Reindeer, Santa, and Snowman stockings were 99 Cent store purchases for guests that are staying with us.  The old knit socks are ones my husband and I purchased for our first Christmas 33 years ago.  They have holes in the toes, but we don't look the same either, so they stay!
What a labor of love!

Luke 2:9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Plates, Pope Gosser Rose Point, 1942, antiquing and eBay
Linens, 3 Irish Linen table cloths, antiquing and eBay
Silverplate, Community White Orchid 1953,  Morning Star 1948, and Wm. Rogers Avalon
Chargers, 99 Cent Store
Plaid ribbon, Michael's Crafts
Champagne bucket and Silver Candelabra, Goodwill
Mirror, Home Goods, years ago
Napkins, Bed, Bath and Beyond, years ago

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Winter White or Plaid?

Four days to Christmas and I can't decide if my table should be the plaid I've been into this year (and have set-up and used a couple of times), or a Winter White that I've been dreaming about creating.  Please help me decide!

At 12:30 today, I stopped by Ralphs with visions of white hydrangea's dancing in my head.  What else would they have to fill my silver champagne bucket and thus get the Winter White table started.

Score! And so a new table was born.  It isn't complete, and little carelessly put together in one half an hour.  But I think I like it.  Please help me decide.  Winter White or Old-Fashion Plaid?

 String of silver bells that didn't make "the cut" this year and languished in the ornament box. 
 Added baby's breath to the hydrangea's (needed to get two bouquets).  On Christmas day, I'll add fresh flowers or greenery to fill it out more.
Hammered Aluminum lazy susan, from a collection gone mad.  My mom calls it the "poor person's silver."  I love the handcrafted feel of each piece.

 Magnolia branches dry beautifully and seem just right for Christmas.
 Lots of votives for sparkle on the mirror.

 The long mirror came from my hallway.  Don't you love shopping in the house?

 Pope Gosser Rose Point and Silverplate (need to straighten up a bit!)
Rose Point 1945, Antiquing, Ebay
Wild Orchid, Community, Ebay, Rose Bowl Flea Market
Tablecloth Irish linen, antiquing
Champagne glasses, had for years, keep in their boxes for these occassions
Champagne bucket, Goodwill 2011
Candelabra, Goodwill 2011
Magnolia branches, outdoors
String of silver bells, ornament box
Mirror, hallway

Or the traditional old-fashioned Holly Holly Plaid?

 Santa Sideboard
 I can't decide. Yesterday a young teacher stopped by and commented that his mom and I had similar decorating styles, country Santas and holiday china.  I sort of mumbled, "It must be an age thing."  Have I fallen into the "never-update-your-look" look?  The ironic thing, is this is my first year liking plaid. 
Can't make up my mind.  Please help.  I'm going to set all this aside and create a winter white table this afternoon.

Dishes Holly Holiday, Robinsons years ago
Small plates, Home Goods, 2011
Flatware, Home Goods and World Market
Nativity scenes, gifts and purchases from all over
Tablecloth, made from a remnant of fabric