My main inspiration is to get more families to gather together, cook together, and entertain together… the goal is to GATHER!
Involve the kids and your guests as much as possible. Don’t be shy! Ask a friend coming over to fill the water glasses, toss the salad, trim the flowers. Having a beautifully set table encourages conversation, people stay longer, and organic gathering moments take place!
When our family entertains, we always do a couple things. We have a welcome sign that the kids love to write the names of the people coming over on the sign. This simple gesture instantly makes your guests feel welcome, feel at home, and it lets them know that you thought about them before their arrival. It’s funny, now if I forget to do this, my kids remind me, sometimes they even write their names now.
One of the other things that we do is “set the table”… this can be as simple as flowers from your garden, or tree branches from outside, or simple a bowl of fruit. Add some little candles, and set the table.
The last thing we always do is offer something to drink as soon as someone arrives. Usually they would love a glass of iced tea, water, or a fresh mojito! Everyone enjoys a refreshment upon arrival to your own.
So how do you set a table?
I start with beautiful linens that were passed done from family members, fabrics picked up from traveling, and stuff from discount places! They are all such treasures! Don’t be afraid to mix and match fabrics and colors. It’s about using things that make you happy!
Then I love to use placemats or chargers to “anchor” the space. Layer with a big plate, then salad plate, and a bread plate above the plate if there is room at the table. Silverware- I place the forks on the left side of the plate, and knife on right side closest to the plate and then the spoon! This creates a cohesive look that is functional and also pleasing to the eye. Then the water glass goes on top to the right of the plate. Wine glass goes next to the water glass. Napkins are my favorite table accessory , they can either be secured with a cute napkin holder, or on top of the top plate, or in between the plates, or on the right side of the plate! The goal is for this to be FUN! So involve your kids! Make this a learning opportunity!
Your guests will feel loved, cared for, and that they matter to you, when you take the extra time to set the table. It also one less thing to do while your guests are already at your home!
Last but not least…. enjoy conversation, share about your lives, have great dialog, ask questions, act interested in your guests life. No matter who you are, we are all going thru hard and tough things, so show lots of compassion. Create positive atmosphere! You never know, this new or old friendship could blossom into something really beautiful!
Lastly, I simply encourage you to GATHER, host another friend or family in your home, cook for them, set a table, and have great conversation! By gathering you are creating community and creating friendships and showing kindness! Cheers to gathering more around the table and sharing a meal together! Together we are better!
Much love to my Rena Ware Family,