Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Last Valentine everyone red and pink'd out?  I have just one last valentine post.  I made heart shaped cakes for my Brit.  So here is our tea cart set up for cakes and tea.  He really liked the cakes and reciprocated with a heart-shaped box of chocolates for me (my favorite!).  I know it sounds like such a cliche...but I LOVE it every year!

This is our tea cart set for valentine's treats
Here are the cakes...I think I needed more cream in my chocolate ganache, but he loved it anyway
I think you can never have too many roses...and these dishes are COVERED with them
Plates for heart cakes and cups for hot tea.  There are some pretty m&ms peeking out at the top
More roses in the damask rose flatware...
Oh, there are those m&ms...they found a matching bowl, though they've covered up the roses
I love hemstitched napkins and especially in such a pretty pink
I love this new pedestal plate that I JUST bought (but didn't get a chance to find a better matching ribbon)

So I promise this is my Last Valentine post for 2011...but red and pink are my favorites, so THEY will be showing up frequently in the future.

Now for the dish on the dishes:
  • The rose pattern dishes are from Iron Accents and I saw them when they were featured in Victoria magazine
  • The tea cart cloth was a gift from my sister L.  She brought it to me from a visit to Ireland
  • The sterling is Oneida Damask Rose
  • Pink hem-stitched napkins are from ebay
  • The pedestal cake stand I just picked up at TJ Maxx...I've been debating for a while.  Now I need to find a variety of ribbons to thread through
  • My tea pot and the little china tray are from Tea with Grace
  • Sugar and creamer are Hammersley from ebay

Thank you for indulging me in my last valentine post.  I'm so happy that you stopped by.  Be sure to visit all of the gorgeous tables at Between Naps on the Porch (the button is up on the right)


Thursday, February 10, 2011

My Sweet Valentine

Well...Valentine's Day is nearly here.  My dear Brit doesn't really care for all of my tablescaping dishes etc., but he does appreciate my efforts.  I love pink and red together and this is the one time of year where it seems to be most appropriate to put them together.

Red and pink and white and "valentine-y"

A red tablecloth and white dishes, some with pink flowers
I made place cards from old-fashioned valentines I found on the internet.
This one obviously is for my honey
My husband prefers dark chocolate and I WAS a milk chocolate lover...but he has won me over to the "dark" side.  And what is Valentine's Day without chocolate?  Make mine Ghirardelli! 
My wonderful husband surprised me with the DVD of Downton Abbey, Season One.  Isn't he the sweetest?  He DOES pay attention sometimes!

What is more romantic than roses everywhere!
I've planned a dessert involving hearts and cake and chocolate
 to put on the pink glass cake pedestal
Here is the table with candlelight.  I think it's cozier to be next to each other
Cyril is checking see if his name is on the placecard...
Sorry Cyril...back to your footprint bowl!

Now for the dish on the dishes...
  • The dinner plates and cream soup bowls are Royal Albert "Val D'Or"
  • The pink flowered plates, including the cake plate under the candle, are Paragon "Victoriana Rose" and is one of my favorite patterns. I've been collecting for years (from ebay)
  • The champagne flutes were a wedding gift from our wonderful friend, Bill
  • The tall goblets and the bowls are the palest pink and are from QVC several years ago
  • The silverplate is Oneida Vanessa/Francesca from ebay
  • The pink damask napkins are from ebay and the Old Country Roses napkins rings I found at T.J.Maxx (we still don't have a Home Goods)
  • The pink glass cake pedestal is from ebay as well.  I just love the color!
  • The red chenille tablecloth with the damask pattern was on sale at Linens'N Things from a while ago
  • The place card holders were a gift
I hope everyone is looking forward to a Happy Valentine's Day!  And I thank you for stopping by!! 

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Back to Reality

The first season of "Downton Abbey" is over :-(

So I've put away the "good" china for now and am back to the reality of lots of snow and comfort food on regular dishes.  We didn't get the huge storm the weatherman was promising, but we had enough added to the piles we have already and it is snowing right now.

I made some turkey soup which my husband actually likes (vegetables and all!!) and he has discovered that he also likes grilled cheese sandwiches...who doesn't love melty warm sandwiches!!  So a cozy casual dinner of soup and sandwiches seems appropriate for the dead of winter.  I also made brownies.  These are the richest, most wonderful brownies ever, thanks to Alton Brown.  I have included the recipe below.

Just an overview of the's pretty casual but you don't need much for soup and sandwiches!
All we need are plates for sandwiches and dessert.  A bowl for soup, fork for dessert because the brownies are so moist and rich and a large soup spoon.  That mug is for hot chocolate to have with the can NEVER have too much  chocolate!!!
A napkin with cabbage roses in black, red, and green
Here are the brownies...I couldn't think of a better centerpiece!!!!   :-)

These brownies were on "Good Eats" with Alton Brown...I just love him...he's so informative and funny!

Cocoa Brownies
Recipe courtesy Alton Brown
4 large eggs
1 cup white sugar, sifted
1 cup brown sugar, sifted
8 ounces melted butter
1 1/4 cups cocoa, sifted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup flour, sifted
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
In a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the eggs at medium speed until fluffy and light
yellow. Add both sugars. Add remaining ingredients, and mix to combine.
Pour the batter into an 8-inch square pan. (Spray w/veg spray); make a sling of parchment paper and spray again) Bake for 1 hour (I find that I end up baking for 1 hr. 20 min). Check for doneness with a toothpick inserted into the center of the pan. When it's done, pull up with the edges of parchment and put on a cutting board. Move to a rack to cool.  Cut to the size that you prefer. (Sorry this recipe looks so odd...I have been trying to fix it for way longer than my reserve of patience...unfortunately, this is how it is right now!)

Thank you for stopping by...I hope everyone who is dealing with this severe weather is cozy and warm!!