Thursday, March 26, 2009

A time honored tradition continues...

This is my first time posting a 'tablescape,' so I hope I'm doing it right - Thank you, Susan!

This year, the arrival of spring inspired the table setting for our annual St. Patrick's Day dinner...
(click any photos to enlarge)

... with garden statuary birds and a vintage, cottage-styled tablecloth...


...of pink and white flowers scattered across a cheerful blue background.


But the real star of every St. Patrick's day dinner is Nana's china...


I always assumed my Nana had purchased this china (Marx & Gutherz Carlsbad #1446 Austria, circa 1885-1898), as it had been passed down from her to my Mom, and then on to me. But after researching this pattern and seeing the manufacture dates, I'm now wondering if my great-grandmother originally purchased it and started the tradition of passing it on to the next generation (my Nana would have been just a baby in the late 1800s!)...


The one thing I am certain of is that these dishes have been part of every St. Patrick's Day (and many other celebrations!) on the Irish side of my family for a minimum of 90 years, but more than likely well over 100 years ...


The curves and lines of the serving dishes are so beautiful, as are the delicate pink and blue flowers in the pattern... I definitely think my Nana (or great-Nana) had excellent taste when it came to picking a timeless china pattern!


Now this may not be as pretty as the china, but for a St. Patrick's day dinner it's every bit as important! I took possession of my mom's large cooking pot after she passed away. Every New England boiled dinner I remember her serving was simmered in this pot. So the tradition continues...


... a St. Patrick's day dinner of corned beef, cabbage, potatoes, carrots, and onions.


This year the meat was so tender, it just pulled apart...


These beautiful serving pieces really make the food look so good!!


Thank you for letting me share our St. Patrick's day dinner and table setting with you. We're usually pretty casual around here at dinner time, so I don't often have anything to share on Tablescape Thursday!


After dinner, the cleanup begins. Naturally all of Nana's china is carefully handwashed and dried; and then it's back to the hutch until our next celebration!!


I have a favorite photo of my Nana as a young woman hanging between two of her plates above the hutch. I think she'd love that very special memories are still being made around the dinner table set with her china!
Now I'm heading over to Susan's beautiful blog, Between Naps on the Porch, to visit all the other Tablescape Thursday blog posts! I hope you'll join me!
Donna

30 comments:

Claudia said...

Beautiful china, Donna! Nana had wonderful taste - and it is indeed timeless. What a pretty tablescape. Have a great day!

Joanne Kennedy said...

That was a great unexpected table scape for St. Patrick's Day. I was expecting the traditional green for St. Patrick's Day.

That is beautiful china and a great story about how it got passed down through all the years.

I sure wish I had something like that from my grandmother or great grandmother.

Love the big pot too. I think all our moms had the big pot back then.

Hugs,
Joanne

Cynthia said...

Congrats on your 1st tablescape thursday you did a fabulous job! The china and story behind it is so very special. Beautiful table! Cindy

Glenda said...

Wow, what a great post. Your table looked inviting. Love the color combinations.

Heirlooms are great no matter what they are.


Ciao

Shabby Chick said...

That's a lovely tablescape, and a wonderful story behind it. It's so nice that the china has been in your family for so long. Oh and the dinner looks delicious!

Mel xxx

Tracey said...

What a great table!! I love the china and your home is sooo Beautiful!! You did a great job and thanks for sharing a tradition your family has had for many years !!

kathi said...

What a lovely story and beautiful photos too! Makes me want to do a tablescape with my mother's Spode china. So nice to have things the ladies in our family loved and used... they are real treasures!
Thanks for posting your tablescape!

Martha said...

What a great table -- and what memories for St. Patrick's Day . . the food looks good too! Glad you came to join us for TT

"Blossom" said...

China to the vintage atmosphere is so warm and inviting. Isn't it great to have hand me downs.

Scribbler said...

Beautiful story and lovely table -- I enjoyed it.

Scribbler

Chandy said...

Nana or Great Nana passed on a great and beautiful tradition! The pattern is just lovely on that dinnerware. And your table is so calming and inviting, too. I love it!

Great job for a first time. Now that you know how fun it is, mark your calendar, I'd love to see more!

Claudie said...

Welcome to your 1st and most beautiful Tablescape.
Your Nana's china is very original. I love it all and that dinner, well, are there any leftovers?
Happy TT
Love Claudie
xo

Christi at A Southern Life said...

What pretty china, love the little birds.

Domestic Designer said...

I love your china and the tradition and memories behind it. I also really like the table cloth..so pretty. The meal looks yummy! Have a great day and thanks for sharing!

Janie's World said...

What a beautiful tablescape! So soft and serene. Your home is also beautiful.

Mama said...

Hello Donna, Welcome to TT, you have created a stunning tablescape around your nana's beautiful china. Kathy.

Susan @ A Southern Daydreamer said...

beautiful table! Happy Tablescape Thursday ~ Susan

Kathy's Red Door Welcome said...

It looks like you have a very charming home. I love that you treasure the china that was handed down to you. Your table linens are so sweet and your Nana's china looks lovely with it. Nana is what my grandsons call me. Thanks for sharing.

Chatelaine said...

You honor you Nana's memory by using her dishes to celebrate St Patrick's Day. I'm sure she'd be proud of you carrying on the traditions. That tablecloth is gorgeous and dinner looked delicious!

~CC Catherine said...

Donna, what beautiful china, and the fact that it is a family heirloom makes it even more special. My heirlooms are always my favorite to use, it's like keeping a part of my loved one with me. Your home is also lovely! I really like your blog, this was my first visit! ;) ~CC Catherine from "Catherine de th`e Cups"

Lisa said...

THIS IS MY FAVORITE POST. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR SHARING THIS WITH US.

HUGS FROM MAINE

P.S. THE PHOTOS WERE BEAUTIFUL!!!

Kim Chalfant said...

Great tradition! Great china! Great table! Great dinner!

Cass @ That Old House said...

Hello! It's my first visit to your blog, and it's lovely. That china is gorgeous! Your Nana, or her mother, had excellent taste.

How special to be able to use family heirlooms for celebrations. Thank you for sharing such a special time ...
Cass

Edie Marie's Attic said...

Hi Donna!

What a fabulous post! I love your family china, beautiful pattern. And I love how you have it displayed with your Nana's picture on the plate rack! Clever clever girl!!

Your daughters are so beautiful Donna. Happy birthday to your sweet girl!

And your post on Ms Gizzy was wonderful. A great story to encourage people to save dogs from destruction. We have gotten 3 dogs that had previous owners and they all "knew" that we saved them. You could just feel it from them and the way they loved.

Hugs, Sherry

Kris said...

Love your St. Patty's tablescape, not the traditional colors, but it's lovely. The china is beautiful and your home is even more beautiful.

Have a happy day

Kris

Celly B said...

I love the pastel pink and blue and white--so fresh! I love the china, too (and I also had a Nana)!

Dream Mom said...

What pretty china! I am sure your Nana would have been proud. I love using china and recipes that have been handed down for generations. Nice job on your first tablescape!

TattingChic said...

What a lovely table setting! That meal looks not only delicious, but very healthy as well!

Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) said...

Gorgeous tablescape! The china is beautiful and so cherished having belonged to your grandmother. I love the little birds and all the little touches on this beautiful table! Susan

Mary Ellen said...

Donna,


This table is set perfectly. And your dinner looks scrumptious.
It's a beautiful china set. You're Nana must be smiling down as
you and your family gather for the feast. She must be so proud
of you. Her table settings could not have a better home. Right in
the center of your heart.
The covered and open serving dishes are extraordinary. She
was a beautiful lady Donna, her portrait has the nicest smile.