A White Table Setting And A Life-Changing Decision

I’ll get to the beautiful white table setting mentioned in the title soon, but my goodness, it’s been a busy week. I can’t believe it’s been eight days since my last blog post! There are several reasons for this, the main one being that I simply didn’t have time to write one. It takes upwards of five hours to write, photograph, edit and optimise a blog post, and even longer when the social media sharing is factored in.

On Thursday of last week, Harry made his debut for a new football team, (this is in addition to the one he already plays for), and played in Hull. The journey should have taken two hours, but took way more than three, due to heavy traffic and roadworks. In fact, my left quadriceps muscle went into spasm such was the stop-start action of my leg on the clutch. It’s still twitching intermittently now, six days later!)  They played the 80 minute match and then we made the journey home. All told, it took more than seven hours- a significant part of anyone’s day. Football is a huge part of our lives and takes up two full evenings, some Saturdays and almost every Sunday morning. Luckily, I enjoy it, but even if I didn’t, I’d still take him and watch. Not only is it my role, it’s my privilege and I’ll do anything to support my children, their hobbies and their dreams.

A Big Decision…

Harry had a good game and I thoroughly enjoyed watching him. It came at the end of an emotional day, because earlier, Poppy had got her GCSE results. The hard work she put it and her dedication paid off, because she did brilliantly and I’m very, very proud of her. She starts sixth-form next week and in two years, she will fly the nest. I remember her first day at school like it was yesterday and now we’re looking at university open days.

The next two years will be gone in a blink of an eye, so I’ve made a (day-to-day) life-changing decision. I’ve resigned from my position as writer and editor of Aspire Magazine, a role I held and loved for three years. During that time, I learned a lot about the print industry and many different businesses and professions. I met countless inspirational people along the way and regularly undertook restaurant reviews, a brilliant perk of the job. It was a hard decision, but the extra time will enable me to focus on my blog and other freelance writing. I’ll be able to finish work at a decent hour. I’m looking forward to spending more quality time with my children and to relaxing, chilling and just being with them. I’m looking forward to cooking and baking, because I’ve lost my mojo and I’m bored of the same old same old. I want to rekindle my love of cooking and entertaining.

A White Table Setting for Smart Casual Dining

I recently got some gorgeous new crockery and glasswear which also made its debut last week. Making the table look pretty is all part of the occasion and something I enjoy doing. To celebrate Poppy’s GCSE results, I hosted a small dinner party for her on Friday evening. I invited one of my children’s close friends George, who also got great GCSE results, and his family. Ian was here too, taking the total to seven. A white table setting is elegant, chic and versatile. It makes an impact yet is understated. The dinner plates are part of the *James Martin Everyday 12 piece boxed set, by Denby, which contains four 28cm dinner plates, four 22cm salad plates and four 16cm diameter bowls). I added some small succulent plants to the table to compliment the linen napkins I’ve had for as long as I can remember.

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Poppy loves olives and dips which and this *Gastro by James Martin 9 piece serving kit, is perfect for presenting them. (The kit comprises a 30cm ceramic platter, four ceramic spoons and four ramekins). I should point out that all are suitable for the oven, microwave and freezer and are dishwasher safe.

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For a formal dinner, I have glasses for both wine and water. Often though, lack of space means it is more practical to one glass for both. These beautiful *short dragonfly goblets fit the bill perfectly. They’re ideal for a casual setting.

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The *sycamore live edge serving paddle board, is another versatile addition to the table. I use it for cake, bread, tapas and cold meats as well as cheese. It was crafted by Smith Originals, a small artisan brand. It has special meaning because the carpenter is the partner of one of my school friends. Please do take a look to see the rest of his bespoke creations including dining tables and storage tables.

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In between the other pieces of the white table setting, I added some little white heart-shaped plates. They are the Porto Stoneware Heart Side Plates from The White Company which I have had for several years. Again, they are dishwasher safe and useful for sweets, biscuits and nuts too.

I’m looking forward to ringing the changes to the white table setting. I bought some brightly patterened tapas dishes in Nerja, which will be perfect for adding a splash of colour. Most of all though, I’m looking forward this new chapter of my life and the day to day changes it’ll bring. It should be a very happy autumn.

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Thank you as always for supporting the brands that support my blog and me. Later this week I’ll be linking this post to Brilliant Blog Posts and The Saturday Share.

19 Comments

  1. Honest Mum August 30, 2017 / 6:42 pm

    Oh darling, congrats to both your amazing children and it sounds like resigning was absolutely the right thing for you. I adore your blog and want to see recipe posts now you’ll have more time to cook and bake! That dinner set is stunning, lots of love and I hope your leg gets better soon x

    • elizabeth August 30, 2017 / 8:35 pm

      Thank you so much Vicki. I’m very proud of them both, though they drive me bonkers at times!! I’m so looking forward to cooking more. I love it- always have- and food is so important to me. I think autumn is food season. I love making soups and casseroles and baking comfort food and cake xxxxx

  2. Nico @ yumsome August 30, 2017 / 7:08 pm

    Well done to your talented offspring! And well done to you for making the decision to blog full time. If you discover the secret to working shorter hours as a full-time blogger, please, do let me know! Ha ha!

    Love that tableware. All of it. Particularly the serving set – those spoons are so fab! You really can’t beat white crockery, can you? xx

    #brilblogposts

    • elizabeth August 30, 2017 / 8:37 pm

      Thank you so much Nico! I suspect I’ll end up working just as many hours, given the fact that it’s 9.30pm and I’m still working!! Come next week though when the children are back to school, I’ll be in a better routine. I hope 🙄 xxx

  3. Michelle Frank | Flipped-Out Food August 30, 2017 / 8:31 pm

    How wonderful that your kids are so talented and well-adjusted. Congratulations on your big decision, and I truly believe that you’ll find it very rewarding. Gorgeous table setting: especially that cheese board! LOVE IT!

    • elizabeth August 30, 2017 / 8:42 pm

      Thank you so much. They’ve been through some very tough times so it makes me so proud that they are doing well. They are typical teenagers for sure but they’re (usually) well-behaved 😉 The cheeseboard is fabulous isn’t it. Such a good price point too for something original xxx

  4. Josep-Maria August 31, 2017 / 7:04 am

    An absolutely wonderful table. I love the white monocoromo and all the delicate and beautiful complements. The decor is great. Elegance and modernity.

    • elizabeth August 31, 2017 / 2:39 pm

      Thank you Josep-Maria. I agree that all white looks elegant and modern. Have a lovely day xxx

  5. Victoria - Lylia Rose August 31, 2017 / 2:00 pm

    The table looks wonderful, I love the pretty heart shaped dishes and succulents – I’m a sucker for succulents! Congrats to your daughter for amazing results 🙂

    • elizabeth August 31, 2017 / 2:38 pm

      Thank you Victoria. I agree about the succulents! So easy to care for too! And thank you for the lovely compliment about Poppy. I’m very proud of her xxx

  6. Susanna August 31, 2017 / 8:20 pm

    Love the table setting. It’s so elegant and classic. My daughter bought me a cute succulent recently and I’m going to buy some more as they really are attractive and luckily for me quite easy to look after ! I wish you all the best for this new phase in your life. xx

    • elizabeth September 1, 2017 / 8:05 am

      Thank you Susanna. It is s elegant isn’t it and so easy to mix and match other styles. Succulents are fab aren’t they and so fashionable right now. Thank you for the good wishes. I’m looking forward to the change xxx

  7. Petite Teacher September 1, 2017 / 6:54 am

    Dear Elizabeth. Congratulations on making such an important decision with your own wellbeing in mind. It’s amazing what kind of coincidence yesterday brought. You resigned and so did one of my dear friends. You have written a blogpost with lots of beautiful white photos and so have I. Like they say: great minds think alike 🙂 I love your table setting and wish you many evenings with a table full of good food and good company. Love, Lieske

    • elizabeth September 1, 2017 / 8:08 am

      Thank you Lieske. Oh, I hope your good friend has lots of exciting plans following her resignation. It was a hard decision for me to make but one that I know is right for my family and my wellbeing too. I was often working until 10pm and spending too little time with the children. White always looks so pretty doesn’t it and it photographs beautifully, compared to black. I’ll take a look at your post now. Have a lovely weekend xxx

  8. MT September 1, 2017 / 11:16 am

    Even though you’d already told me about your big life changing decision, reading this brought tears to my eyes. I know how much you’ve sacrificed for your children & admire you immensely. Leaving a job to spend precious time with the kids may not seem sensible to some people but I am most certainly not one of them! There is a fine balancing act to this that takes enormous courage & faith in ones self to pull off. I know for sure YOU WILL DO IT WELL.
    I’m super proud of you Liz xxx

    • elizabeth September 1, 2017 / 12:38 pm

      Oh Michelle, thank you so much. That in turn brought tears to my eyes. I know you also sacrificed your career to spend time with your children and I know that you don’t regret it. Of course, you and I are in daily contact and you know the day to day comings and goings and the juggling involved and even though Poppy and Harry are very independent in some ways, they need me just as much as they did when they were juniors. It’s just different now. The football miles I do are increasing by the week, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I am so looking forward to this next chapter. I’ve missed cooking and baking immensely and I rarely watch tv or stop working so I’m looking forward to switching off for a wee while too. The time with our loved ones I so precious isn’t it? Have a beautiful weekend with your gorgeous brood and thank you for your support every single day xxxx

  9. No Fear of Fashion September 1, 2017 / 6:53 pm

    Dear Lizzy, it must have been difficult to make this decision as your job was such a nice one. But if there is no balance between spending time with your loved ones (+ some rest) and work, then you should restore that balance. And in favour of people you love. They are the most important in your life. And yourself of course. You need rest too. I take it you can afford quiting your job and I am happy you can. So often people cannot and wind up with a burn-out. Which is not funny at all.
    And your table setting is chic.
    Greetje

    • elizabeth September 2, 2017 / 7:10 pm

      Aw Greetje, thank you. I loved my job so it was a very hard decision, yes. I did feel the need to restore the balance and as for finances…that remains to be seen! xxx

  10. Jaclyn Bree September 4, 2017 / 7:00 am

    I really like the dragonfly cups!!! (If you listen close enough you can probably hear an entire chorus of girls saying the exact same thing).
    Thankfully we don’t have that kind of traffic where I live but I have experienced the 405 in California and it truly was a nightmare. And that wasn’t even in a stick-shift.
    #brillblogposts

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