Wednesday, December 15, 2010

This One Is For You Mom! Tablescape Thursday

     I wasn't looking forward to Christmas this year. Losing my mom in May changed everything in my life and I simply haven't been able to think about celebrating this holiday without her. My mom was Christmas in our family. She loved giving gifts. You couldn't get anywhere near the tree at our house because the presents spilled out way into the room. She looked all year for unique little things for all of us and she loved watching us open things and be surprised. It was always such a challenge to find things for her that would surprise her in the same way. I loved shopping for my mom.

     Between us, my sister and I have 6 kids. They are 28, 28, 27, 26, 22 and 14. You can tell from the ages that when they were small, we had a houseful of kids that were all about the same age. Mom would dress them in red pajamas, help them put out cookies and milk for Santa and delight in each and every one of them. It never changed as they grew up. Somehow, Santa still filled my stocking and my sister's, our husband's too and of course all those now big kids. When going through last years Christmas cards a couple of days ago, I found the one mom sent us last year..."See you in 15 days, can't wait"! What a difference a year makes. How do we have Christmas without the person who was our center...our drill sergeant...the heart of our family?

     We are going about Christmas in what is becoming the new normal for us. We won't all be together, but none of us will be alone. We are shaking things up in hopes that the focus can be on all of our blessings and not on an empty chair at the table. My mom would want that for us and we are all putting forth the best effort not to let her down. I'm sharing my Christmas table with you today because most of us will be too busy next week to be reading blogs. I had been looking for new Christmas dishes for a while and my heart just wasn't in it. I didn't feel "Christmassy" so nothing appealed to me at all...until I saw these dishes. My daughter and I were at HomeGoods in November and when we saw these, we both knew it was meant to was a message about the holiday for us.

     The large charger plates and matching bowls are "Pottery by Santa". When I saw the word "Believe" I knew that I needed to remember the reason for the season as well as believe in Santa Claus. I set them slightly off center so you could read the words. They are layered with creamy Wedgewood dinner plates.

The table runner is cream with holly and berries (HomeGoods).

For the centerpiece, I used an antique cake stand sitting
in a berry wreath.  A Mercury Glass ball surrounded
by snow is the star of the table.

A vintage Santa stands guard.

Cream colored napkins are "garnished"
with a sprig of Christmas floral.
The sterling flatware was my grandmother's.

     A Willow Tree Angel (Thinking of You), one of the last gifts from my mom, is tucked in as a reminder that she is watching over us. Notice that she holds a seashell in her hand.

Lenox candlesticks with snowflake sparkles
add a cozy glow to the table.

Believe in what your heart is saying
Hear the melody that's playing
There's no time to waste
There's so much to celebrate
Believe in what you feel inside
And give your dreams the wings to fly
You have everything you need
If you just believe

I am linking today to Susan @ Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday
I know the tables this week will be amazing...take some time to visit her!


Unknown said...

Gorgeous Sue! I love the dishes, that santa, and the big bulb, I love it at night all shiney and bright. So Gorg. Have a good night.

P.S. Bella was thrilled about the baby boy and actually didn't say one word about it not being a girl. Nothing. She did ask if the baby can still be in her room. ;) jen

Donnie said...

I'm so sad about your Mom but we all believe she is in a better place and still with us too. My mom passed June 2006 and the holidays will always be hard but the sweet memories are in the forefront now and the sadness is not as sharp. She would be pleased you're carrying on her traditions. Sounds like she loved Christmas and her family very much. Take care.

The Charm of Home said...

How beautiful. Your table is so pretty and a wonderful reminder of the lovely Christmas spirit your Mom would have wanted you to remember. Have a Happy Holiday!

Sandra said...

Sue, what a beautiful tribute to your mama.
I love love the dishes. So beautiful!

koralee said...

Your table is stunning and feastive my friend....such a sweet tribute....hugs and joy to you. xoxoxo

Anonymous said...

Your table is beautiful Sue and your post is sweet. Really touched my heart.

Lynn said...

I'm crying but believe that your Mom is happy with the way you're making this Christmas special:@)

Country Wings in Phoenix said...

Oh Sue Sweetie...
This table is so beautiful. I believe. I love your place settings and the table, oh Sue your Momma is smiling away at you. So proud that you were able to pull all the lovely pieces together and share a beautiful Christmas with your family.

Hang a pair of her shoes on a chair for her sweetie, make sure they are facing backwards, a tribute to her. Tie them with a bow too, and she will be laughing and just smiling away. I know you two laughed a lot and that will make her SO happy. It will make you all smile too.

I have been praying for you and thinking of you each day this week. When you all sit down at the table next week, share a memory, a favorite memory from each of you. Believe me it does wonders.

Merry Christmas Sweet Sue and SO much love, Always and forever, Sherry

Marlis said...

Your mom is happy knowing that you are doing Christmas. the first year without my mom was a challenge, I feel for you. Your table is great. I love those dishes. they are the best! Drooling over the center piece!!!

Glenda/MidSouth said...

A beautiful table setting - love the dishes! Your Mother is looking down on you and smiling. She is proud!

Lyneen said...

I LOVE THE RED & WHITE DISHES... what an elegant table!!!! One I know your mother would be proud to sit at. Enjoy your family as your mother would want! Merry Christmas.

Relyn Lawson said...

I think your Mom would be more than proud of you and of this tribute. I just bet she would be so proud of the love you have for her and the way you continue to celebrate her life. This is beautiful.

Maria said...

Dear Sue,
My eyes teared as I read your post. I can only imagine how you must feel. My children / nieces and nephews are similar ages ---eight of them --- 27 through 16 and three more ages 3 - 6.

My mother would have loved lavishing them ~ I know they would have been her treasures. Unfortunately she passed away right after I was married and was with us in spirit only through all these years. She died on Dec. 7, 1978... and had already done some of her Christmas shopping. Mom bought me a few things we didn't get for our wedding or shower: a nice cheese grater, the big old fashioned kind...and an ironing board.
I still have them.
Your love for your mother can be felt through the words ~ the lines on these pages. I believe that our souls are eternal and that our loved ones who have passed through the great gateway are still ever-present in spirit. Your table is decorated with cheerful plates, an old fashioned Santa and her special angel. How can she keep from smiling ♥

Merry Christmas, Sue & may God bless your whole family.
ps. I think a "red pajama party" family reunion would be perfect!

Marty@A Stroll Thru Life said...

Oh Sue, such precious and loving memories of your mom. It is so hard to learn a new normal when the center of the family is gone. I know she is watching over all of you and loving you from heaven. Your table is stunning. I love your new dishes and the precious angel is really the star of the table. God Bless. Hugs, Marty

Bonnie@Creative Decorating said...

What a beautiful table setting!! I love it and the memories of your mom. Life does change and traditions aren't quite the same when we lose a family member. I have learned to continue on with the old traditions as best I can and start some new ones! Merry Christmas!

Tricia said...

Sue, what a wonderful post! I believe finding those perfect dishes was a "God moment." What a gorgeous table you've set with them! I hope you have a lovely Christmas!

Sharon Haynie said...

Sue-what a lovely tribute to your mom. You've done a great job on your table, the dishes are fab! Thank you for sharing with us.

Shirley said...

This is such a beautiful table and what a great remembrance of your dear Mom. I'm sure she is happily celebrating too.

bj said...

Sweetheart, I guess all of us that have lost their mom feels the exact same way. I am probably older than your mom when she passed, but I still miss MY mother so much it hurts...especially at this time of year. A photo of her hangs on our tree every year. It's been 22 yrs now...22 Christmases without her and altho it gets easier, not at Christmas time.
I once told my daughter I wish there was a way I could make it easier for her when I go..she said, "Mom, there is no EASY way to lose someone you love with all your heart." And, she is right. We are sad...broken hearted, really....but it passes after awhile and we are able to go on with a good Christmas.
Your table is just breathtaking.

Anonymous said...

Believe....there is so much in that message and having it right there on the table is perfect.Losing a mom is tough, no matter what your age. My 92 year old mother is still alive, but in so many ways we have already lost her which is incredibly sad. Enjoy your holiday and cherish your memories.

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

I love your new dishes and I know that your mom would too -- she would be glad that you're keeping Christmas in your heart, just as she did...keep her traditions alive, they will become all the sweeter. Those first holidays and special dates are the hardest...cling to the "gift" of joyfilled memories. Wishing you a Merry Christmas.

Marigene said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marigene said...

Sue, what a wonderful tribute to your mother. Your red and white table is beautiful...the centerpiece just gorgeous. Love your vintage Santa.

J Rodney said...

Absolutely beautiful Sue!

Entertaining Women said...

This first year without your Mom, I think that it's important to allow yourself a large measure of grace...accepting that you won't do everything at the top of your game...after all, every day is a first of that day without her here. Someone told me one time that if you were blessed to have a 100 % relationship, it's okay to have a 100% good bye. Your Mama was blessed to have a daughter who cherished her as much as you did. It helped me when I learned that there is no time in heaven. For your Mom, you will all be with her in the blink of an eye. Only those of left here on earth are saddled with time. I know that your table pleases her and honors her. I think that I can hear my Mama smiling...can you hear yours? Thank you for sharing your heart and your beautiful design. Cherry Kay

Entertaining Women said...

Thanks for getting back to me. My Mama has been gone since 2003, and I still miss her so much....but it's moved to a bitter-sweet emotion. There are times...every once in awhile... that I still pick up the phone to call her and talk...just for a moment, and then reality kicks back in. I've made the choice to be comfortable with that. It's a part of my personal journey of learning to move forward without my Mama. You'll find your way, too. Cherry Kay

BrightenedBoy said...

No one expects you to be perfectly alright right away.

I think you're wise not to force yourself to be cheery, but wise to push on as well. In time you'll establish your own Christmas traditions, no doubt drawing on the many things that this inspiring woman taught you.

Focusing on your blessings is good, but don't be too hard on yourself for feeling sadness; it's a normal reaction.

I'm wishing you a very merry Christmas with your husband, children, nieces, nephews, and sister.