Saturday, 8 October 2011

setting the table

When MissM is at home
she always sets the table.

La Table dans la versure (1926)

I love to watch her select the mats,
arrange the plates and fill the water jug.
Even the way she lays out the knives
with the blades pointing outwards
has a personal touch.

La Table d'automne (1924)

MissM has always known
that setting the table
is about more than making sure
there is cutlery to eat with
and glasses to drink from.

La Nappe rose (1924)

My parents taught me
and I have taught my children
that every opportunity
to eat together as a family
should be treasured.

Petite table au pavillon (1935)

Henri Le Sidaner (1862-1939)


  1. We are more alike than I even suspected. You paint a lovely picture of a young woman setting the table, of course, she is your daughter.

  2. My own Miss M sets our table with hand picked flowers and quirky arrangements of knife and fork.

    I also wanted to let you know that I remain a faithful friend and reader even if I have become a lousy commenter.


  3. beautiful words. lovely paintings. and yes. i `ve been tought to treasure every time we eat all together. miss M is a wonderful person...

  4. We get a random selection of spoons thrown into the middle sometimes.

  5. Gorgeous images Alice. One of my favourite times, a family dinner, and of course the table has to be set just so. Like yours my daughter has picked up the habit, as I did from my lovely Mother, long may it continue.

  6. The blade pointing outwards ...
    Is that MissM signature table setting?
    My son loves to set the table. Candle and flowers included!
    Go figure ...

  7. When my daughter sets the table she does it grudgingly, haphazardly and incompletely.

  8. How lovely to see a properly set table and the promise that it holds.

  9. How lovely to see a properly set table and the promise that it holds.

  10. It is one of the things i miss most. Love these paintings.

  11. She will be back soon to do it again, I am sure.........

  12. Was this her first visit home Alice? I hope you are doing OK. If you ever need me to get anything to her in a hurry then I am just 20 minutes away from her x

  13. I miss the help with the washing up, even if they do leave the sink greasy and the plug blocked with bits of food.

    Pomona x

  14. MrM would like to take this opportunity to fess up to being less than perfect at table laying - I always make sure that there are eating irons/noshing rods/gobbling sticks on the table though. Side plates are optional at times and glasses are provided for wine not water. Napkins are only deployed to impress MrsM to distract her from something I have forgotten to do elsewhere - sometimes works.

    MissM is much more dependable in this respect than both myself and MasterM.

    On the other hand I do have a lot more drying up credits to my name than anyone else

  15. Setting the table is our daughter's favorite job around the house too, and I have hopes for the 3 year old. This morning at breakfast he asked if we could light the candles now that it's dark in the mornings.

    Every meal together is a treasure, indeed.

  16. Liz in Missouri (USA)October 10, 2011

    In my hear of hearts, I wish more people knew this. I feel sad to think how many peole don't understand the value of simple elegance and grace. Thank you for a most lovely post.


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