5 Valentine’s Day Tablescapes

With Valentine’s Day just a day away, will you be sharing the love? Is it a romantic dinner for two or a dinner party with friends? We are having a very low key evening at home this year but whether you enjoy Valentine’s Day quietly or pull out all the stops, here are some Valentine-inspired table ideas for you.

A Quiet Dinner for Two

Dining in the front hall

I like to experiment with setting up a table in an atypical part of the house. It’s fun to get a different perspective and not always eat in the same spot. Our front entry hall is the perfect place for a small round table to seat two guests. If the weather is pleasant, then it’s even more inviting to sit by the open door.

Pink and white matte ornaments (used at Christmas) are hung with clear fishing line from the overhead light fixture for a bit of whimsy. The two upholstered chairs (see similar here)from Ballard Designs bring a sense of comfort and elegance to the table.

My favorite china

The antique Black Forest carved drop leaf table provides the perfect backdrop to the gold chargers and Juliette china from Royal Doulton Romance collection . Pink stemware, both vintage and new add to the pink theme. Vintage napkins are a thrift store find.

Just enough flowers

Since the table is small, a narrow row of fresh hydrangeas is just enough. Candlesticks by West Elm. The blush linen table runner is from Williams Sonoma but they no longer carry this color. Here is a very affordable one on Amazon.

Fun to dine elsewhere

Do you have a fun location where you can set up a small table for dinner? There is something refreshing about having a meal in a new place! You can see more details about this dinner set up here.

If You Prefer Red

Vintage tablecloth

As you know, I love all types of linens~antique, vintage or new. Typically before I set a table, I select the right linen and then go from there. Here’s a favorite one with deep red roses~another perfect Valentine basic and can often be found in thrift stores.

Taking a meal in the living room

Finding a quiet corner in our living room by two bright and cheerful windows, makes the perfect place for a Valentine meal.

Combining old and new

With silver chargers and beaded white dishes, the place setting compliments the grays and whites in the tablecloth. The heart-shaped glass ornament (I purchased and hand carried back from Paris) serves as a napkin ring.

Sparkling crystal

Crystal glassware and candlesticks captures the light and ups the elegance factor. Again, the table is small so a gathering of deep red roses in a small crystal vase is perfect. To see more about this table, click here.

For a larger crowd

You can’t have enough flowers!

We love hosting an elegant Valentine dinner party for friends. It is not an annual occurrence anymore, but we still enjoy putting it on every other year or so. With a larger group, we tend to set up on the back terrace patio, where the dinner table easily seats 10-12.

Gifts for our guests

There is a great deal of planning that goes into this event~from unique invitations to gifts at the dinner table. The outdoor heaters are set up just in case it gets too chilly as the evening progresses.

The more flowers the better

When it comes to flowers for this event, I tend to go all out. There is something so magical about a table lush with flowers and candlelight. There are so many details to this event, that I wrote two blog posts about it.

Printed menus

You can find Valentine Dinner Party ideas, Part 1 here and all the resources for the table and Valentine decorations here in Valentine Dinner Party ideas, part 2. If you are thinking about having a fun event, you will find lots of inspiration in these two blog posts, from the initial invitation to the actual event.

Here is another Valentine dinner party setting on the back porch table but without linens. The mahogany table really makes the flowers and dishes pop. Similar set up but isn’t it interesting how linens (or no linens) can completely change the look?

Different dinner, same table

Here is an evening shot and isn’t the table just magical?

Magical evening

Experimenting with a New Tablecloth

Wallace Bee Flatware

I just recently received this lovely shade of pink tablecloth from my friend, Darviny. If you don’t follow Darviny on Instagram @dayswithdarving, she is the queen of Indian block print fabric. So I am playing a bit with different dishes and colors. My photos don’t really capture the warmth of this soft pink, but it is perfect for Valentine’s Day.

For this 60″ x 90″ Juliette tablecloth, I got it on sale (25% off)for $43.50. It looks just fabulous on my dining room table too!

Layering the table

The brushed gold chargers are a staple and I like how they pick up the gold in the Famille Rose salad plate by Williams Sonoma. You can find similar chargers here. And it appears that William Sonoma still has these plates available too. The Emma white dinner plates with the dotted edge are a regular item at Pottery Barn. Pale pink linen napkins can be found on Amazon here.

Playing with place settings for Valentine’s Day

Well, I am hoping this post is inspiring you to think about Valentine’s Day and a very special table. Happy Tuesday to you! I love Valentine’s Day as it helps me stop and absorb all things of beauty.

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This post is shared with Between Naps on the Porch Tablescape Thursday #697 and Peacock Ridge Farm Fabulous Friday Link Party 2.4.22.

Thanksgiving Table Ideas from Table Design to Centerpiece Inspiration

Every year I try to make our Thanksgiving table extra special, from the space and table, to the place setting and centerpiece. There is something that says love in setting a lovely table for your guests. Since this is the holiday of thanks, what better way to tell your family and guests how grateful you are to gather together.

Thanksgiving table 2021

My sweet friend, Rachel from The Ponds Farmhouse is hosting this round up of Thanksgiving ideas to help inspire you this season. Below there are 15 incredible posts filled with wonderful ideas and suggestions on how to make this the best Thanksgiving ever.

Please make sure you stop by each post and of course, we love your comments and feedback. If you are not in the Thanksgiving mood yet, bookmark it for later. Thank you for stopping by.

If you are new to my blog, welcome. My name is Mary and our family lives in a historic home in Phoenix, Arizona. We are blessed with space to entertain and share our unique property with others. So let’s get started on the Thanksgiving table.

Place and Space

With 8 in attendance, the dining room is the most desirable place to have our dinner. Even though our weather is beautiful, it has been a bit warmer during the days. Outside dining could be an option but the mosquito factor is uncertain.

Expanding dining room table

Our dining room table seats 6 comfortably and 8-10 with the additional leaf. Here is a great picture of our dining room rug with colors that are not typical of autumn.

Fall dining room mantel

Since typical autumn colors are NOT the shades in my dining room, it is always a bit of a dilemma in decorating the dining room mantel with fall decor that goes with the pink/burgundy/cream/green rug. Naturally I want to pull the same tones/textures to the Thanksgiving table centerpiece. To see the post about my mantel decorating challenge, click here.

Using Natural Materials

Potted herbs, flowers and succulents from Whitfill Nursery

A few years ago, I started making centerpieces out of items I can re-use in the yard or garden later. A quick trip to my favorite local happy place, Whitfill Nursery and I find everything I need. From ornamental cabbages to succulents to fresh mint, I believe I have the colors, textures and sizes I want.

Selecting the Tablecloth

Learning from experience, it is important to protect the surface of the table. Remember the dinner party where the bourbon spill did this to our table?

Damaged table surface

Now I make sure I add the custom made table pad underneath the tablecloth….always. I cannot seem to access the company who made my pads, but there are several resources on Amazon, which provide products you can cut to size. To source table pads, see here.

Table protectant pads

Not only does the pad protect the table, but it also quiets the sound of glasses or utensils hitting the table during the meal. The manufacturer custom makes them for your table and they fold up for easy storage. Or check out this quilted waterproof pad that you can cut to fit your table. It’s affordable and has good reviews.

Vintage linen bedsheet

Since the tablecloth I want to use is a bit smaller with the additional leaf, I place a larger, neutral tablecloth beneath. Actually what I use is a vintage linen bedsheet I found at a convent during a visit to France. I still swoon over the beautiful monogram sheet.

The Place Setting

Place setting

The ecru, heavily decorated table linen is the perfect backdrop for the place setting. I found this one at a thrift store.

Using a scalloped wooden charger, Johnson Brothers Windsor Ware platter, and gold rimmed glass Leslie Roy salad plate, each place setting is finished with blush linen napkins and pink glassware. A white pumpkin completes the autumn look. You can find these items or similar here:

Assembly of the Centerpiece

Succulents, lamb’s ears, cabbages, bacopa will be replanted

Since all the plants are already potted, I place each one into a bowl to protect the table from the bottoms. Water plants and drain before putting them on the table. Using any bowls available (cereal, dessert, glass), the plants are arranged down the center.

Here is a list of plants and quantities I use for a 5′ x 18″ centerpiece:

  • Lamb’s ears-2 in 4″ pots
  • Ornamental Red Kale Cabbages (5) in 4″ pots
  • Echeveria “Red Sky” succulents-2
  • Graptoveria “Bashful” succulents-2
  • Bacopia Megacopa White-4
  • Fresh Mint-2 in 4″ pots

To fill in space, I use:

  • Pomegranates
  • Brass decorative pumpkins (see similar here)
  • 5 Silver mint julep cups with fresh cut pale pink roses (2 dozen from Safeway)
  • 2 small antler sheds
  • Faux greens that match the ones on the mantel
  • 2 tall brass candlesticks
  • Scatter votive candles on the table
Silver mint julep cups are the perfect size for the cut roses

Since the lamb’s ears are the tallest, they are toward the end. Also, remember not to make the centerpiece so tall that your guests cannot see across the table.

Overhead view

Final Touches

When creating your centerpiece, think textures and scale. It’s easy to have lots of little things going on but keep the selection simple and use repetition, scale, color and texture be your guide. Throughout dinner, my daughter kept reaching over to touch the lamb’s ears~which are so soft and lovely.

The antlers provide a rustic and different element to the table, but do not dominate or standout too much.

Brass pumpkins for glamour

Perhaps the best part of the meal is when candles on the table and mantel are lit and everyone sits. Since the dining room is a bit brisk, a warm fire will add to the overall charm.

Table for 8

Previous Years

I hope this inspires you to do a fresh centerpiece for Thanksgiving. Now let’s look at previous Thanksgiving tables. In 2020 we had our dinner outside on the back terrace. Using Hester & Cook fall inspired paper placemat, the centerpiece is a compilation of fabric pumpkins, sheaths of wheat, apples, pears, cotton stems, faux fall leaves and votive candles.

Fall fruit, autumn leaves and fabric pumpkins
Name tags calligraphy by Delaney

In 2019, again you will see many plants and flowers~petunias, cabbages, lettuces and pale orange roses and alstroemerias. Same concept but different color palette. To see more about this table, click here.

Thanksgiving table 2019

In 2018, all the tones are again in warm autumn colors with chrysanthemums, protea, cabbages, ivy and white roses. To see more about this centerpiece and our Thanksgiving traditions (at least in 2018), click here.

2018 Thanksgiving table with protea and cabbage

Back in 2017 is when I started using fresh plants vs. all cut flowers. All the plants and items are in a foil lined wooden tray. At the ends of the tray I used ivy and spread it down the table. This centerpiece is a bit more condensed but it is fun experimenting with different vessels. To see more details, click here.

Pears and large chrysanthemums in 2017

In 2016, I am using fresh cut flowers only, with a few fabric pumpkins. The blog was just starting back then and hopefully my picture-taking skills have improved a bit! Ha!

2016 Thanksgiving table

If you enjoy this post, please share on Pinterest.

Now onto all the fabulous Thanksgiving inspiration from these incredibly talented women!

Ideas for Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving Dining Table

Rachel from The Ponds Farmhouse

Rachel shares a fall centerpiece that’s perfect for your Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving Dining table. It combines DIY and vintage pieces for a unique table arrangement.

The Ponds Farmhouse

Heirloom Pumpkin Fall Centerpiece

Heidi from Eleanor Rose Home

Wow your guests with an elegant fall centerpiece utilizing an heirloom pumpkin and seasonal fresh florals.

Eleanor Rose Home

Thanksgiving Traditions to Try this Year

Kristin from White Arrows Home

These easy Thanksgiving traditions make it a favorite holiday to look forward to all year long.

White Arrows Home

Thanksgiving Dining Table with Copper Accents and Free Printable Placecards

Cindy from DIY Beautify

Easy tips to set a memorable Thanksgiving table with printable place setting cards that can double as a gratitude garland!

DIY Beautify

Simple and Beautiful DIY Artichoke and Magnolia Centerpiece

Jen at Midwest Life and Style

Impress your family and friends with a simple and beautiful DIY artichoke and magnolia centerpiece for your Thanksgiving table.

Midwest Life and Style

How to Create a Simple Rustic Thanksgiving Centerpiece

AnnMarie from Simply 2 Moms

Create a simple rustic centerpiece for your Thanksgiving table this year. Pretty neutral style can be used for the entire autumn season.

Simply 2 Moms

9 Simple Tips to Hosting the Best Thanksgiving Dinner Ever

Stacy from Bricks ‘n Blooms

Looking for ways to organize yourself to host Thanksgiving? Here are 9 simple tips to hosting the best Thanksgiving dinner ever. Not hosting this year? Check out my Thanksgiving hostess gift ideas at the end of this post.

Bricks ‘n Blooms

Simple Autumn Thanksgiving Vintage Decor Tips

Ann from Dabbling and Decorating

Are you looking for simple Thanksgiving or autumn decorating ideas? Let me share a few tips and tricks to help you get started.

Dabbling and Decorating

How to Create the Perfect Table for your Thanksgiving Feast

Renae from Peacock Ridge Farm

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and that means it’s time to start planning your feast! If you’re not sure how to create the perfect table for your Thanksgiving ing celebration, don’t worry. We’re here to help. In this blog post, we’ll give you some tips on how to decorate your table for Thanksgiving. So read on and learn how to create a festive table for your holiday celebration!

Peacock Ridge Farm

How to Make an Easy DIY Cornucopia Basket

Wendy from WM Design House

Thanksgiving is time to give thanks and celebrate with friends and family. One of my favorite traditions is decorating my Thanksgiving table with my homemade cornucopia. I make it out of chicken wire and rope, and then fill it with pumpkins, gourds, feathers and flowers. It’s a beautiful and festive decoration that always gets me in the Thanksgiving spirit.

WM Design House

Dried Wheat Centerpiece

Jen from Cottage on Bunker Hill

Do you love the look of dried wheat? Me too! I love the natural color…I think it is so pretty so I came up with this dried wheat centerpiece. It is perfect for your traditional Thanksgiving table. Let me show you how to make it.

Cottage on Bunker Hill

Boho Cottage Fall Tablescape

Jen from Tatertots and Jello

Create a warm and inviting Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving table by making a DIY table runner, pillows and a beautiful footed bowl centerpiece filled with textured, fabric-covered pumpkins and leaves.

Tatertots and Jello

How to Create a Beautiful Thanksgiving Tablescape

Robyn from Robyn’s French Nest

Are you hosting Thanksgiving this year? Enjoy some tips for hosting a large gathering with budget-friendly Thanksgiving table elements. At the same time, learn what pieces you can pull together from around your home, and how to best layer them. Then, you can easily create a thoughtful and beautiful tables cape this Thanksgiving.

Robyn’s French Nest

Simple Fall Table and the Prettiest Serving Pieces

KariAnne from Thistlewood Farm

Looking for some simple ideas for your Friendsgiving table? Why not add a little blue and white with your pumpkins? Tons of simple ideas to make your holiday celebrations a little easier.

I hope you enjoy all the inspiration! Thank you again for joining me today.

Reworking Space: From Home Office to Guest Bedroom

Last November, we hosted family at our cabin for Thanksgiving. In determining who would sleep where, we decide to take our home office room on the first floor and convert it into a guest bedroom. This particular room is at the end of a hall with its own bathroom, so it makes sense for our out-of-town family to use this as a bedroom. Unfortunately, this is a last minute decision and at that time, the room is functional but not very appealing. Recently, I try to improve upon this space with some aesthetic additions.

Existing office space

The Before~Home Office

This is a good size room (12’10” x 10′) with an eastern window (for morning sun) and large sliding doors to a deck on the south side. As a home office, there is a desk and chair, a day bed and a green leather chair and ottoman.

Old green leather chair/ottoman

I purchased this day bed long ago and we used it frequently when the children had friends sleep over. The bottom pulls out and pops up with another mattress. However, it doesn’t get much, if any use now. It’s one of those pieces of furniture that I wonder if I should sell.

Here you can see the green leather chair and the closet doors. This chair and ottoman are leftovers from the previous owner but I am fond of the color and wear of the leather.

A favorite desk

This Hekman Queen Anne desk with inlaid leather is one that has been in three home moves. All the wall art (reproduction currency) belongs to my husband. I’m not a fan, but it’s a marriage compromise.

Moving it All

Since I really do not want to purchase any more furniture, we move these pieces to other parts of the cabin. The desk now is in our master bedroom, which has a larger enough space for it. The day bed and leather chair/ottoman go upstairs to another bedroom. A final deep cleaning of the berber carpeting, windows, and walls ready the room for the next step.

A deep cleaning is needed

From an upstairs bedroom, we move 2 vintage mahogany Georgian style twin beds with a lovely acorn posts by the Van Stee Corporation from Jamestown, New York. I picked up these two sweet beds from a local thrift store at a fabulous price. BTW~have you seen the price of vintage or antique twin beds lately? If you ever see a beautiful set of twin beds at a great price, you may want to consider buying them.

Vintage twin beds

Working with two twin beds allows a bit of flexibility. In this room, we push the twin beds together and use king size sheets, pillow top, comforter and quilt. If we need to separate the beds for two guests, it is rather easy to do as I have all the bedding for twins.

Window Treatments

Pottery Barn Blackout drapes

Since the sliding doors are large and south facing, I get black out drapes from Pottery Barn in a soft blue chambray flax linen.

On the eastern window, we use a woven blind, identical to the cordless ones we use in the pool house renovation. From Factory Direct Blinds, we continue to be pleased with the quality and customer service they offer. I like how they blend in with the natural wood window trim.

Cordless woven shades


The walls in this room are SO white, but I’m not up for painting them. Instead I add more blues and neutrals~like the quilt set I buy from The Company Store.

The Company Store quilt set

I must have purchased it on clearance because I cannot find the exact one on their website. However, I find something similar on Amazon here. The top stitching and the pattern combination make this feel like a vintage piece.

Pillow from Walmart

Surprisingly, I find very cute throw pillows at the local Walmart. This 21″ x 21″ off- white knot pillow from the Better Homes and Garden collection is only $14.98. It is a good quality and the knots give it texture and dimension.

Rosette pillow from Walmart

Another great find from Walmart is this very soft rosette plush pillow 22″ x 22″, again from the Better Homes and Garden collection. The ivory is the only color left and you can find it here. I try and stay away from the big box stores and support smaller local businesses. But up here in the mountains, the shopping is very limited and Walmart is a good employer of the local population.

Pillow happiness

Look how cute these pillows look on the bed with an existing embroidered Ralph Lauren one.

On the Walls

I love vintage and antique quilts and use them extensively here at the cabin. Typically it is difficult to find matching quilts for twin beds. A few years ago, at a Junk in the Trunk vintage market at Westworld in Scottsdale, I find these fabulous flower garden pattern with a scalloped edge . BTW the next Vintage Market is September 15-17th. If you want to attend, find the link here.

Flower Garden pattern vintage quilts

Since the unattractive orange peel textured white walls dominate this space, I use these precious quilts like art and hang them from a curtain rod. Our guests can take them off and use them for an extra layer, if needed.

Vintage quilts on a curtain rod

We have a Big Lots store about 20 minutes away that I have recently discovered. What bargains can be found there! This 24″ x 36″ piece of canvas wrapped art work, on sale, is less than $20 (can’t recall if it was $9 or $19). The colors work with the room and I would be hard pressed to find a blank canvas for that price.

Affordable art from Big Lots

Extra Touches

With limited space on either side of the beds, I use a thrift shop find small end table that fits right up against the door trim.

Small bedside table

On the other side of the bed, I am looking for either a small table or shelf. An old brass wall lamp is ideal since space here is limited.

Wall lamp

I am debating about a dust skirt on the beds. Since the beds take up quite a bit of floor space, I think not having a bed skirt makes it feel a bit more open and perhaps, charming? Your thoughts?

Bed skirt or no?

Instead of the bulky green leather chair, I move a ladder back chair from another bedroom. Again, Big Lots has this great artificial plant and basket (on sale) that provides a bit of green to this corner.

Plant on sale from Big Lots

Doorstops remind me of my childhood. Since we are at the cabin, this huge pinecone does the trick. I think this is a Coulter pinecone?

Pinecone doorstop

Overall, the transformation from home office to guest room is nearly complete. Now I’d like to create a special seating area just outside the sliding doors, so our guests can have private outdoor space too.

In the past, the master bedroom was the only one on the first level of the cabin. This newly transformed bedroom allows our guests to stay on the first floor and not need to navigate the stairs to the second story.

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Saturday Meanderings

Happy first Saturday of June! Typically by now we are experiencing the summer heat, but I must say our weather has been just gorgeous! Mornings in the low 60s and highs in the low 90s. The next few days may get to triple digits but the forecast is lower temperatures for most of next week! A lovely, long delightful Spring~I will take it! School is out, the snowbirds have left and there’s little to no traffic. Quite honestly, I do love this time of year. What a week! Let’s get started chatting about all good things.

Memorial Day decorations at cabin

Last weekend was Memorial Day and it was a relaxing one for us at the cabin. Mid-week I drove back to Phoenix which generally is a 3.5 hour drive. Unfortunately, however, a semi-truck fire occurred about 1 hour from my home destination on State Route 87. It appears the contents of the truck caught on fire and traffic slowed as we came upon billowing black smoke.

Truck fire ahead on SR 87

Even though the driver pulled over to the side of the road, it was a very windy day. Soon the fire spread to the adjacent brush and quickly became a 10 acre active fire….all while I am sitting parked in bumper to bumper traffic with no place to turn around or back up or proceed forward.

Aerial fire fighting support

Of course, this all occurred out in the middle of nowhere, without close local resources to fight the fire. Eventually ADOT closed SR 87 in both directions. For 3.5 hours we watched as fire fighters tried to contain this wildfire, while also trying to extinguish the huge truck fire.

Aerial photo of burnt semi-truck

The good news is that no one was hurt and in spite of the high winds, fire fighters were able to contain the fires. Plus during the 3.5 hours of not being able to go anywhere, everyone got out of their cars and were very friendly. So grateful to those who are trained to rush toward danger to protect the rest of us, as fires can be so unpredictable.

Thank you for your Suggestions

I cannot tell you how much I appreciate all your comments and ideas last week on how to tie in the decor on the back porch of the cabin. You are all so talented and each comment I read, I was so impressed with your feedback.

Bria Gray Stripe Throw Pillows from Big Lots

As a result, I found these Bria Gray Stripe Throw Pillows at Big Lots (we only have a few stores up in the mountains) for $9.97 and they are the perfect size for the red chairs. The neutrals of gray and white are a big improvement in tying in the colors of seating area to the dining space.

Adding more gray to the sitting area

It’s a first step, and I will be implementing some of your great ideas. Thank you! You are the best!

Cabin Projects Completed

It is a busy week checking off all the projects from the To Do list for the cabin. My husband, is the real champ here, getting so much done. With our neighbor Gary, they are busy splitting wood for the fall woodpile.

More wood for the woodpile

He also rented a professional carpet cleaner from Home Depot. I do not believe we have ever cleaned all the carpeting at the cabin. Even the outdoor rug on the screened in porch got a good cleaning.

Clean outdoor rug on screened porch

Typically we bring our outdoor cushions inside over the winter, but failed to do so with one piece of furniture. Even though the furniture is covered, the mice did quite a job on one of my cushions.

Mouse damaged cushion

The furniture is from Pottery Barn and the cushions are made with Sunbrella fabric. However, it is several years old. I attempt to go to a fabric store which sells Sunbrella but there is nothing in stock that matches. They also make (not repair) cushions but the first available date to get my cushion into production would be late August and it would be expensive too.

Darn. I decide to walk the fabric store to see if I can find any fabric that might match, because I can do this, right? Fortunately, in the remnant section, I find 1 3/4 yard of this Sunbrella fabric.

It’s a slightly different color but I have enough fabric between the decorative Greek key strips to replace the damaged section. Plus this repair will be on the back side of the cushion, not the visible front edge.

Here is the repaired cushion. Not bad for someone who doesn’t sew alot!

Repaired cushion

I have never been a fan of the angled roof-line over the front door entrance to the cabin. Obviously, the cabin footprint has been added onto over the years, but this part of the structure has always bugged me a bit. This past week, my husband hung a large set of elk antlers and I’m hoping this will be the focal point vs. the roofline.

Elk antler distraction

A Gift that keeps on Giving

Currently, my son, Benjamin and his girlfriend, Delaney are living in Chicago while Benjamin gets his masters degree at the University of Chicago. They live in a high rise apartment on the 36th floor and do not have any outdoor space. However, Benjamin loves to cook and Delaney is creative, so for Delaney’s birthday we send her an Aero Garden, a hydroponic indoor garden system.

Aero Gardening system

The unit is small enough for their apartment, and is providing an abundance of fresh herbs for their cooking.

Their garden is loaded with Genovese basil, dill, thyme, mint, parsley and Thai basil. The control panel tells you when to add water, reminds you when to add plant food (included), automatically turns lights on and off for your indoor herb garden.

I know Father’s Day is around the corner, but this gift would be great for anyone that wants fresh herbs but may be limited on time and gardening space.

Lemon dill orzo with sheet-pan Chile crisp salmon and asparagus

The added benefit is that I get photos with plant growth updates as well as pictures of the delicious food they make with these fresh herbs.

You can buy the Aero garden on Amazon here for $119.99. This also includes the plant food and the seed pods. I’m actually thinking about getting one too. Growing and eating your own food does something good for the soul.

Garden Update

Spaghetti Squash from the garden

We are picking spaghetti squash and love this easy recipe. Roast the squash by cutting in half, remove the seeds and sprinkle olive oil, salt and pepper on the cut side. Pierce with a fork all over the squash and roast in an oven at 400 degrees (cut side down) for 40 minutes. Scrape out the “spaghetti”. We then pour my homemade tomato sauce with ground beef or bison or turkey on top. Top with shredded Parmesan cheese. An easy, nutritious and delicious meal.

This weekend I really need to focus on using up the balance of the peaches. It’s time to pick them all, let them ripen and find recipes so they don’t go to waste. If you missed my post yesterday, it is filled with peach recipes.

Almond Apricot Tart

The apricots are just starting to turn yellow, but I am picking them a few days earlier so I can get to the before the birds. Looking forward to making my almond apricot tart.

From around the Internet

Mrs. Stewart’s Liquid Bluing

Have you ever used Mrs. Stewart’s Bluing? I’ve seen it in the stores but have never purchased it. Here is an interesting article from Kitchn about how this product can really whiten your towels. Someone washed my white towels at the cabin with the red ones so I’m wondering if I can remove the pink with this product. If you have used it, please let me know your thoughts.

From Kitchn

Speaking of laundry, Carrie Vitt from Deliciously Organic sent an email about toxins in laundry detergent. Here is a paragraph from her email:

The fact is, most laundry detergents are very toxic to our bodies. 

Popular detergents contain over 25 toxic chemicals—and those are just the ones that are blatantly listed on the labels. There are many more trace toxicities that aren’t printed. 

Here are some of the biggest toxins (including known and probable carcinogens) you’ll find in common detergents: 

  • Phosphates
  • Bleach
  • Formaldehyde
  • Ammonium sulfate
  • Dioxane

And don’t forget about the dyes, fragrances, and brighteners, which are enough on their own to make it a product you’d never sign off on having in your home. 

But, obviously, detergent is a necessity.

Molly Sud’s Laundry Powder

Carrie recommends Molly Sud’s Laundry Powder. I’ve never tried this, but let me know if you are concerned about the possible toxins in our laundry detergent. If so, what are you doing to minimize this?

Photo: Design Morsels

My friend, Andrea from Design Morsels, doesn’t use detergent at all since she converted to an ozone system. You can read her post, the Ozone Laundry System: Pros and Cons, Does it Really Work? Andrea is the modern day Hints from Heloise (am I dating myself?) and her blog posts are always filled with really good information.

Well, that’s a wrap! Here are some pretty pictures to send you into the weekend! Thanks for joining me today.

Wild daisies
A walk in the mountains
Cheers to the weekend!

Delightful and Inspiring Table Ideas for Easter

Am I the only one that cannot believe that Easter is less than 2 weeks away? Last year it was on April 17th and this year it is so much earlier. With beautiful Spring weather well on its way and nature blooming all around us, I want to have a pretty Easter table to compliment the season. I love looking at different tablescapes and I hope some of these ideas from previous years will inspire you.

For the last two years, we have happily hosted my son and his numerous friends from around the country. But this year, they are all off doing their own thing. To date, it is unclear if any of our children will be here for Easter and until plans are finalized, I do not know if I am setting a big table or maybe my husband and I will go somewhere for brunch. But that doesn’t stop my brain from wanting to envision a beautiful holiday table.

Place Settings

For Easter we tend to go a bit more formal, since we eat casually more of the time the rest of the year. I love pulling out my best china and making the table feel a bit more special. These brushed gold chargers get a great deal of use at the table because they are so versatile (and so affordable!)

On multiple occasions you have seen my bee flatware. As much as we use this for both casual and more formal place settings, it still looks as good as the day I bought it.

Brushed gold chargers

I love blue and white dishes and I do not recall where I purchased these many years ago (I think from Horchow). See similar dishes here. However if you want to see more details of this table setting, click here for the original post.

Royal Worcester Yellow Urn/Roses/Greek Key

Here is one of my favorite patterns: Royal Worcester Yellow Urn/Roses/Greek Key. I have the dinner plates and the cream soup and saucer set only. There are so many colors to work with in this one pattern. To see more about this place setting and tablescape, click here.

Adding a cute bunny salad plate to the Royal Doulton Romance Collection Juliette place setting works. The small plates are from Pottery Barn and no longer available, but check out these sweet plates from Macy’s.

Bunny plates from Pottery Barn

Colors for the Table~the tablecloth

Royal Dalton Romance dinner plates

The colors of Spring are a must at our Easter table. I love pinks, blues, yellows, greens and anything that represents this time of year. Often, I choose my color scheme before I set the table, but it also helps to have a lot to choose from~I confess to many dishes and table linens.

In the above photo, this Indian-block printed table cloth from Just Darviny is an affordable, attractive and pretty option.

A simple white damask table cloth allows a blank slate to add all your colorful items.

Easter table 2021

Or you can eliminate a tablecloth like I did in 2020. The wood table serves as a perfect backdrop to the gold and yellow themed place setting.

Another option is using placemats too! Here simple white embroidered placemats look sharp against the mahogany table. Here are some pretty scalloped place mats from Ballard Designs.

Spring greens are appropriate for the Easter table too. Using a piece of abstract green fabric given to me by my neighbor, Anne, a fun look is created mixing old and new with the antique Fondeville Ambassador Ware. I just love the colors in this china, a gift from a dear friend.


It is the perfect time of the year to find many spring flowers available for either cutting or purchase. We may be past daffodil season here in Phoenix, but in other parts of the country they are still affordable and available. Don’t they look lovely in my blue and white tulipieres from The Enchanted Home?

If you live in a part of the country that is still experiencing cold weather, here is a fun centerpiece where I combine both real flowers and faux flowers. Can you tell which ones are which?

Which flowers are faux or real?

Lilies are a traditional Easter flower and coupled with roses, make an elegant and affordable centerpiece.

Fresh cut flowers in a clear glass vase is another easy way to say Spring on a budget.

Place Cards and Table Decorations

Sometimes I use place cards, other times not. Get creative with this. These fun birds’ nests are easy to make (see tutorial here). An everyday egg can be used as a place card with a calligraphy letter. Once you make these, you can use them year to year in different applications. If using a real egg, remove the contents by placing a small hole on either end and then gently blowing the yolk and white out.

Homemade bird nest

Ceramic bunnies and baby lamb napkin rings, make the table festive. Here is a bunny napkin ring from Amazon.

Lamb napkin ring

Bird shaped candles or decoupage eggs add to the Easter theme.

Bird candles and decoupage eggs

And don’t forget, Amazon has a great selection of these green moss flocked bunnies.

Last year, I picked up these wooden bunnies from Target. Not sure they have them again this year.

Need even more inspiration?

In 2021, I participated in a blog hop of Easter Tablescapes with 20 different bloggers! What a collection of talented individuals. Just click here and you will find all the links at the end of that blog post.

Happy Tuesday! For those that celebrate and hosting Easter, how will you be decorating your table?