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Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Some Photos and More Comments From the Reception

Here's the dining room table set with most of what was put out, just before the appointed hour. As you can see, we used paper napkins, glass punch cups, plastic water cups, and fine china plates. I have dinner plates in 4 different patterns, from my great grandmother, grandmother, mother, and my own. I only put about 20 plates on the table to begin and replenished from a stack on the window seat. We used a combination of plastic and stainless flatware. The paper napkins and plastic flatware were leftover from last year's reception for my other daughter. It didn't seem to matter in the least that little to nothing matched.

Here is the soup set-up and part of the dessert selection. This buffet is in the dining room, against a wall. Both the soup and fondue needed placement against a wall, as they were both in crockpots. We used china tea cups in my mother's and my patterns. I washed all of the dinner plates and tea cups myself, after our guests had left. I actually enjoyed that moment, handling plates from the different generations in my family and reflecting on how many times each had likely been used. The kitchen was quiet -- it was just me and the sink of china dishes. For the cake, we did use plastic plates, as I had them from last year and could cut the cake into slices and set out with forks whenever I had a few minutes.

the soup, breadsticks, and shaved Parmesan cheese

the ham, Swiss, and Dijon sandwiches, held together with toothpicks topped with stuffed olives

the rosemary chicken salad sandwiches on croissants, spread with a bit of homemade cranberry sauce

cream puffs stuffed with shrimp and pasta salad -- chopped shrimp in the salad and then topped with a whole shrimp

a rose petal ice mold for the punchbowl. Rose petals float, so I found I need to make the ice mold in layers. Also, if I do this again, I will add fewer petals, as by the end of the event, the bottom of the punchbowl was swimming in petals.

the mold just released into the lilac lemonade

a double layer sheet cake -- scratch carrot cake, filled and topped with scratch cream cheese frosting. The cake was completed up to this point on Saturday morning, to decorate on Sunday afternoon.

fresh roses from my garden, with stem ends wrapped in a tiny bit of plastic wrap to decorate the cake

chocolate fondue in a thrift shop mini crockpot ($1.49 at Goodwill) -- one hour before the party, I poured one 12 oz package of semi-sweet chocolate chips and about 3 tablespoons of solid shortening (Crisco) into the pot and plugged in. Just before guests arrived, I gave it a stir and it was completely ready. I left it plugged in for the entire event.

These are the dippers for the chocolate fondue, and included orange segments, strawberries on wooden skewers, lady finger and tea cookies, marshmallows on wooden skewers, and pretzel sticks. The fondue set-up had its own place in the family room and proved to be quite popular.

I made a trio of meringues again just for this event.

a tray of chocolates on a paper doily. Looks fancy, right?

These are boxed chocolates that I bought on clearance for a couple of dollars per box right after Valentine's day. 

When I took off the Valentine's wrapping paper, I could see that the sell-by date wasn't until late summer (Sept 2019).

Finally for the desserts -- I had some large bags of jelly beans bought 3 bags/50 cents on clearance. I emptied 2 of the bags into 5 different teacups and placed around the house. This was a last minute impulse move and actually received a couple of compliments.

More tomorrow . . .


  1. Congratulations to your daughter and to your whole family for putting such a beautiful celebration together. It looked amazing.

  2. Congrats to your daughter! The reception looks so pretty and the food delicious! I'm going to remember your ideas for the next time I want to do some entertaining. Thank you for sharing and I will look forward to the next part!

  3. Everything looks delicious. Did you find the chocolate fondue messy? We had a chocolate fountain for my in-laws 50th wedding anniversary and it ended up being quite a mess. We were glad that it was outside.

    1. Hi live and learn,
      thank you. With the chocolate fondue -- it wasn't messy. But I don't know if that was our crowd or the fondue. After I read your comment, I went to the family room to see if there were any spills on the floor or table (dark wood floor and table). I only found a couple of splatters on the table, but nothing else. A chocolate fountain may have more liquid chocolate. It sounds like a good call to have that outdoors. I bet it was very fun to have, despite any mess.

  4. Everything looks lovely! I'm sure it was very successful. I know you put a lot of time, thought, and hard work into this and it certainly paid off.

  5. How beautiful! I think I'm craving chicken salad croissants and chocolate fondue right now.

    1. Thanks, Kris. I could enjoy a chicken salad croissant right about now, too!

  6. beautiful. I would say what you planned and prepared is priceless and fit for royalty yet you managed to do it on a (self imposed) pauper's budget. Also, I'm sure it was all very much appreciated and impressive, a treat for the eyes and soul. You definitely have talent in the catering business, or restaurant.


    1. Hi YHF,
      Thank you. I don't know if I'd ever want to be a caterer, because as soon as someone pays money for something, they begin to expect more than what they're paying. But this is the kind of work that I did for several years for fund-raising teas, and I enjoyed that a lot. Because these were charity events and everyone was a volunteer, our guests, for the most part, were not overly picky. That I would do again if the opportunity came up.

  7. What a lovely celebration, your daughter must have been so touched by your efforts.
    I loved all the special “Lili” touches.
    I also combine family crystal,china,flatware when I have celebrations. They bring joy knowing the family connections and creating new memories.

    1. Hi Teresa,
      thank you. I really did enjoy using family china for this. I felt that a part of my parents and grandparents were there.


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