Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Tablescape Thursday and Foodie Friday - End of Summer

Gosh, I can't believe we've come to Labor Day weekend -- the "end" of Summer 2009! I feel like it was a shooting star! I know that many of you have experienced almost unbearable heat this Summer - but for most of the Summer, here in Virginia, it was very mild -- until the last two weeks - when it turned hot! hot! hot! And with the usual high level of humidity that seems to make you feel like you're melting into a puddle -- sort of like the "Wicked Witch of the West". So, I chose a tropical theme this week. I was feeling the heat Saturday when I was working on this one -- I also found the want for lots of color on my table, after last week's all white and black and white themes.

Here's our approaching the tropical table photo.

A closer view of the centerpiece.

A side view of our flamingo planter filled with daisys and bright colored flowers in pink, orange, lime and yellow. I'm not a flamingo collector - but my boss is --- big time! So she was pleased to contribute to the tropical theme. Thanks Elaine - your flamingo was perfect for my setting today.

I've had these two candle globes for ages -- I think I probably got them from Garden Ridge.

Fred and Felicia return to the table. They've been off shaking their tail feathers all Summer -- about time they got back to work!

A close look at the colors in my picture frame this week. (And Fred & Felicia's tail feathers!)

Tropical paper napkins in my water goblets. For some reason when I looked at this photo, they look like some sort of root vegetable to me! Beets maybe.
Or radishes?

Flattened out -- you can see the flower design.

Green bamboo placemats with the bamboo flatware I've been so fond of this Summer. I got the placemats at a Ross store in Atlanta back in the Spring -- The flatware came from Marshall's here in Mechanicsville.

The parrot napkin rings were a recent Antique and Thrift store find. I couldn't believe out of the many sets of napkins I have -- I didn't have any the right color for this theme -- I picked the wrong time of year to look for them too - everything out now is Fallish -- I found these on sale at Kohl's for $1.75 each.

Here's a view of a place setting.

Let's take a closer look -- this is a trick I "borrowed" from Laurie of "Bargain Hunting and Chatting With Laurie" -- I tell you -- that woman is a tablescaping genius! Because she taught me how you can easily have dishes of any theme you like -- simply by layering....

....a plain clear glass plate....

...over a paper plate!!! There are some remarkably pretty ones available -- I don't like to eat off a flimsy paper plate, but this is the best of both worlds. Real plates and a design that I might not use often enough to justify buying and storing -- but fun for an occasional themed tablescape. Think of all the potential here -- Thanks Laurie!
The paper plates and napkins came from Target. I got my clear plates at Goodwill - but I've seen them at Walmart too.

I also sandwiched that paper plate between the clear one and my white dinner plates -- it makes for a "substantial" plate.

An overview of my tablescape of many colors.

And an overview of the centerpiece.

Late afternoon in the tropics.

After dark the candles are lit. I can almost hear the steel drums - how about you?

Flowers and flamingos by candle glow.

Oh wait!!!! Let's turn those lights back on so you can see dessert for Foodie Friday! Individual lime cheesecakes. Recipe by Sandra Lee.

Served on these cute little plates supplied by my flamingo loving boss. You may have noticed the edge of them in a couple of the previous photos. Let's see what these guys are up to for the Holiday weekend.

The girls are ready for a dip in the pool.

After playing a round of golf at the club.

And they're ready for a Labor Day cookout to end the weekend.

Here's the recipe....

Sandra Lee's Individual Lime Cheesecakes

8 oz. cream cheese softened
1/2 Cup sugar
3 Tablespoons lime curd
6 mini grahm cracker crusts
cool whip
sugared lime slices

Beat cream cheese & sugar until mixed - add lime curd and mix on low speed. Spoon into crusts -- Freeze for 10 minutes - Dollop with whipped topping - Top with sugared lime slice.

These made a pretty presentation - but I think next time I make them I will add some lime juice - I wanted a bit of tartness that was lacking. I would rate them as prettier than they were tasty -- but they sure made up for it in something quick to whip up. Some other versions were substitutes of lemon curd and lemon slices, strawberry preserves and strawberry slices, I bet your could do orange marmalade and orange slivers too. I think with just a little tweaking, these could be really delightful! If you try these, let me know what you do different.

Hope you're having a great Labor Day weekend and enjoying the end of Summer in a way that suits your style!

Be sure to check out all the other fun tablescapes at "Between Naps On ThePorch" and you'll find something to cook up on Foodie Friday over at "Designs by Gollum".

Be safe!
See ya!


  1. Beautiful end of summer table, and that lime cheesecake looks yummy. I love anything citrus; I guess it's the whole sweet and tart thing.

    I left you a comment on your previous post about possibly doing a new background for you if you're still interested.

  2. Right up my alley Martha! I love this tropical table. Oh those napkin rings, I love them and it seems that anything with flamingos seems to be happening right now. Fred and Felicia are too cute..and tell Elaine that planter would love to come to Florida, ha ha. That is a great idea from Laurie- thanks for sharing it. As usual, you have done such a happy tablescape. All my best to you for a wonderful labor day weekend.

  3. This is such a cute table! I love all of the bright colors, and those flamingo s/p are so cute! I want those napkin rings! They are so great! Thanks so much for mentioning me. What a fun surprise that was. Those Flamingo dessert plates are so cute! Do you still have them, or have you returned them to your boss? I'd love to know the brand and pattern. Dessert looks delicious. I needed this recipe last weekend. It would have been so good with my menu for company. I'll save it and fix it some time. Thanks again for mentioning me. laurie

  4. The table is set so darling with the pink flamingos! I love it! I have a few plastic ones! lol Yours are great. Love the paper plates and napkin. Now the parrot napkin ring is just too cute! Love the dessert! Yummy!

  5. What a fun table you did this week...loved all the colors...and that Laurie is one smart gal...Just love her to death...Thanks for a fun visit...Hugs and smiles Gl♥ria

  6. Martha, Great tropical theme!

    I love the shots at sunset, and by candlelight ~ they look so romantic. Very nice!

  7. Such an adorable tropical tablesetting. I love the bright colors and those flamingos.......adorable. Bamboo flatware is just perfect. I really enjoyed seeing this post.

    Carolyn/A Southerners Notebook

  8. GAd-ZOOKS! Fantabulous!! I love it!! What a great idea combining the glass with paper!! OH--I want to do this!! I will eventually have to get some glass plates...Thanks for that idea.

    Love the flamingos--darling, darling!! Love the colors and the picture frame idea!! Hope I remember all of this---hmm may be I should jot it down!

  9. What a great idea, I would have never thought of that! The glass plates open up a whole world of different ideas. This is such a wonderful end of summer tablescape. Great job!

  10. HE HE HE! Your creating a tropical sensation! I just love your little flamingos! They are darling!


  11. Hi Martha,
    Wow!!! This was fun! I love the pink flamingo idea, that is so cute and that idea from Laurie is just brillant! The colors are so wonderful together and I really like that bamboo flatware too! Cindy

  12. What a fun and colorful table! It is full of life. :)

  13. cute everything! i had a dear friend that collected everything flamingo, you are bringing back so many memories! love the paper plate trick, super idea too~

  14. This is all very pretty! Cute flamingos, I've never seen a flamingo vase like that one. Love the clear plate/paper plate idea!


  15. Your flamingos always make me smile. I really like your napkin rings. I collect napkin rings. All I need is one of a kind and I mix and match.

  16. Great tablescape, Martha. What are the odds when I tell you I live in Mechanicsville, Virginia too!

    Just recently I saw a picture of some "pink birds" and commented on that to my husband. He said, "they're flamingos". I said, "I thought only the plastic ones were pink"....needless to say, I got a lot of teasing on that one!


  17. Wonderful tropical colors. Great way to end the summer with those lime cheescakes and those cute dessert plates!


  18. Martha,
    I loved, loved, loved all of this. Those flamingos are adorable. Loved the dessert plates, too! Thanks for the tip about the glass plates. What a great idea. Love the recipe, but where do you get lime curd?

  19. Yes, I can definitely hear the steel drums...ah, take me away! I love your tropical table, and all the flamingoes! You reminded me of Laurie's idea of pairing paper plates and clear glass plates together. That's such a neat thing!

  20. What a fun party for the end of summer. I really like the yummy look of those individual cheesecakes!! Have a lovely end of the week!!

  21. I love this tablescape! I love your flamingos especially and your parrots! And thanks so much for sharing that idea about clear plates and paper underneath! I love it! Very innovative!

    Great post! I really enjoyed this a lot!
    All the best,

  22. Cute plates! Yum recipe! LOVE the flamingos!
    Great post!
    HUGS sweet friend!

  23. Can I just say that I am so upset that Summer is over? I feel like we didn't even get a summer up here in Western NY! Anyway - with that said, LOVE THIS, COVET THIS! Great job! I hope you can stop by and enter your name in the giveaway at Color Outside the Lines. I know you could do some fantastic things with the loot! :) Cheers!

  24. What a wonderful tropical table! The flamingos make me smile. :)

  25. Fun tropical 'scape! Thanks for sharing that tip from Laurie about paper plates with clear ones on top, good idea! I wouldn't have know yours were paper until you said so. I like how the napkin looks like a 'root veggie' when put in the glass - neat!


  26. Beautiful tropical table, Martha. The flamingos are really cute....Christine

  27. Hi Martha...

    Ahhh...what a cool, light, and refreshing tablescape that you've done today, my friend! I just love all the bright pinks, greens, and yellows fun and so festive! Love your pretty plates...I know, Ms. Laurie really does have some of the grandest ideas...and I love this one!!! Okay...I must admit, one of my favorite things about your pretty tropical table is the pink flamingo centerpiece!!! It's awesome and it would make for a great conversation piece too!!! Absolutely darling! How nice of your boss to loan it to you...hehe! Love the dessert plates too...they're so fun! Your lime cheesecake sounds divine, my friend!!! Thanks for sharing the recipe with us!

    Just wanted to thank you for coming by and leaving me such a sweet note...sure did enjoy it!!!

    Warmest wishes,

  28. Love the flamingo centerpiece, and the ideal with the paper plates was just great.

  29. Ah, pink flamingos, those crazy, whimsical, tropical birds make me want summer to last all year round. Very fun theme for a table setting.

  30. Love Love Love your tablescape!! Flamingo's are so darn cute!!
    Have a fabulous day!!!

  31. This is such a fun and festive tablescape! Love that flamingo! The layering is ingenius. (Never thought of paper plates!) And the lighting in late afternoon casts a beautiful cast to the whole tablescape.

  32. Your centerpiece made me SMILE and also those little mini me's. Recipe sounds refreshing on a hot summers day. The plates are so much fun. Thanks for sharing.

  33. Hi Martha,
    What a festive tropical table! Great tip about the paper plates under glass! I'll have to remember that one. Love the parrot napkin rings, and that late afternoon photo is dynamite!!!


  34. I also loved the tip about the paper plates covered with glass..and the parrot napkin rings are darling..and so unusual.
    A very fitting end to our summer of tablescape fun. I love it!
    And Martha...your comment on my IRON post was about the most precious thing anyone has ever said to me! We love you too, sweet lady!! :)

  35. Those flamingo plates are so very funny!! Nice tablesetting, Martha. Thanks for sharing this with us.

    Warm regards from South America,

  36. Your table is absolutely wonderful! It's one of my favorites this summer.I am partial to flamingos...and wish I could find a planter and salt and pepper shakers like yours (and your boss's). Adorable!
    Thanks for passing on the idea of using paper plates with the glass plate on top. It's ingenious! (Thanks, Laurie)
    Jane (Artfully Graced)

  37. What a fun table!! Summer has come to an end, but I'm loving the coolness in the air here in MO! Happy TT!

  38. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment! I love the flamingo planter and salt and pepper shakers.

    I live in Virginia as well, but I'm not a native, so I found the weather to be far from mild, but closer to unbearably hot and sticky! I'm so glad for the weather change this week- it's been what I wish the whole summer was like!

  39. I've lived in Virginia for a few years and I went to school here, but I'm originally from Vermont. The summers there are more like the beautiful weather we've had this week- highs about 80 and then cooler in the evenings... though sometimes it would get a lot hotter, especially in August.

  40. Yes, I can hear the steel drums, along with the waves lapping the shore and the palm trees swaying in the breeze. You nailed it Martha, perfect tropical tablescape.

    I love, love, love the flamingo plates and will be keeping my eye for those!

  41. Great end of summer tablescape. I love the pink flamingos & I'm usually not a fan. But I love the whimsy they add to your tablescape. I love the idea of using a clear plate over a paper plate. The lime mini cheesecakes sound so yummy too. And thanks for visiting my tablescape & leaving me such a nice comment.

  42. I am going to have to show your post to my daughter as she loves flamingo's. The lime cheesecake sounds heavenly.

  43. Love the plate trick--I'm going to have to look for some clear glass plates now--how handy!

    Like the idea of making different flavored cheesecakes, too.

  44. What an absolutely darling tablescape. This is just the most refreshing thing I've seen in a long time. You haven't missed one detail girl... thanks for sharing the recipe as well.. hope you're having a great w/k.
    hugs ~lynne~