Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Formal Dinner Party

First, indulge me a moment.

I have been teaching Life Management at my local high school (across the street). It is a Home Economics class that exposes the students to various subjects, including Childcare, Cooking, Sewing, Event Planning, and Consumer Issues, among other things. Currently we are doing the cooking unit. Today was serving meals, setting the table and table manners.

I cringe to think that these 9th and 10th graders are our future. Not one of them could understand the need to set the table properly or use the appropriate flatware piece for the appropriate dish. They did not understand the need to slow down and enjoy a meal and the conversation of family or friends. I have 102 students who have been taught from an early age to inhale their food, or to take it to their rooms and text, or talk on the phone, or play video games while inhaling the food. It's a sad state of affairs.

Enough on that subject.

I decided to set my table for a dinner party for six using one of my sets of china for Tablescape Thursday with Susan at Between Naps on the Porch.

The tablecloth is again from Damascus, Syria. The matching napkins are in the water goblets. You can't tell from my photos but the tablecloth and napkins are embroidered all over in white.

The flatware was my mother's "best" set. She didn't want them any longer so I inherited early. They are about 35 years old.

The china was a gift from my mother in law. She bought them at a second hand store. I did not receive any china for our wedding, so she boght me two different used sets about 15 years ago.

Thank you for peaking at my table and for putting up with my ranting.


Jane (Frugal Fine Living) said...

This is lovely! Your china is beautiful!

I totally agree that families need to spend quality time around the table instead of in front of the television in the living room.


ellen b said...

Oh what pretty dishes. I love their shape. I majored in Home Economics but never taught it. I'm sure it would be frustrating in a lot of ways :0)

Melody said...

What a serene and calm room...wait great idea. Leave the room this way and when you get home just go in and sit. Now time think of your happy place

Rettabug said...

Your china is very pretty & the whole table looks both delicate & nostalgic.
Your students are lucky to have you in their life & hopefully, will absorb some of your teachings. Keep trying!!

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

I love that your "moms" have shared their silver and china with you -- and you'll appreciate this more and more with each passing year -- this is all quite lovely.

Martha said...

A very pretty table and love the fact that they are faamily pieces. We should eat like that more often -- unfortunately, our society does not.

Maureen said...

I think you assign your students a tablescape project and send them here for inspiration. I know I've been inspired by all the lovely settings. It's truly an art form.

Brenda said...

What an elegant dining experience!

nannykim at spindle cottage said...

Very soothing, dainty and romantic. As far as the kiddies go....I don't think a table has to be set especially fine...but eating together as a family is one thing I have always been set on--it is such a pleasure to come together and talk, talk, talk, and enjoy each other. Food and conversation is just great for family life. We always made a point of eating dinner together (and usually breakfast too)--

Sandy said...

Beautiful, calm and peaceful table.
Your dishes have a beautiful shape.
I couldn't see allot of the details of your tablecloth and napkins but they look very prety.
I know you have your hands full as a Teacher, I have a daughter who is a Junior this year and I can't believe some of the things she tells me. Thanks for visiting.

ceekay said...

Those dishes are beautiful...the shape is fantastic. Very lovely know, I don't think I cared about a table when I was in school either....some of them will the years pass! Happy TT!

Blondie's Journal said...


I love the boots on the soapbox!!lol!! I applaud you for making the effort to teach these children a bit about life in the adult world. When my 4 kids were young, it was about plastic dishes and utensils, paper cups and napkins. As 'we' have grown, we are using the real McCoy and to be honest , only my Emily seems to have an interest in setting a nice table. She adores the decorative touches and is quite creative. Now I need to teach her some of the basics!!

Your table setting is beautiful. I love the tablecloth. Sometimes if you stand back and zoom in, you can get the details better, that along with the macro setting.

Have a happy weekend!!


Teresa @ Grammy Girlfriend said... it...Had a free night to blog hop and enjoyed yours. Hope you will stop by new Christmas blog ...There is a great giveaway that I will draw for on Oct 1st and all you need to do to enter is comment.

Jane said...

Your table is very pretty.

I also agree that families need to spend more time together at the table. My sons have always brought their friends for dinners. It's appalling to watch the lack of Hubby and I began to teach them...gently, of course. What amazed me most of all were the comments that many had never shared a meal around the table with their families. These kids loved our "family time". We ate homecooked (often really simple) meals and sat around the table (with no cell phones allowed) and talked. Sometimes for hours...

I treasure those days...and love when these grown kids come for a visit.
Jane (artfully graced)

Lajoni said...

Hi thank you for joining in my giveaway...I love your table, very classy. We rarely eat at the table (kitchen) as its covered with all my paints, paper and brushes and the dining room has been turned into a lads room , consoles etc etcthough if we are all in on a Sunday we do make the effort ....I have a confession to make, I have used the same background on my blog as yours as its so pretty, hope you don't mind ....lovely blog , I'll be back xx

Bill said...

Hi Jeannine,
Your table setting is lovely ... clean, crisp, and elegant.

I'm glad you decided to "rant," but saddened by your all-too-true message. It must be challenging and frustrating for you as you try to overcome the years of "anti manners" training these young people have had. What you're doing for them has to be helping. They'll remember your lessons when it's time to guide their own children someday (I know ... scary thought!). ;)


The Tablescaper said...

You'll be happy to know that I have three young children that no only know the value of setting the table, but know how to set the table!

Love those plates!

- The Tablescaper