|Mickey Mouse holiday table. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books|
The Friday before Thanksgiving, before the busy-ness of the holidays takes over, the women of my church do a wonderful thing - it's called the Christmas Memories dinner. It's an opportunity for ladies to pull their beautiful holiday china out of the cabinets and create decorated tables and invite their friends for an early Christmas celebration, (and this is the best part) served by the men of the church. Opportunities like this don't come very often, in fact, just once a year.
The evening begins at 6:30 p.m., when the women arrive and walk through the fellowship hall, taking pictures and oohing and aaahing over the decorations, and greeting friends. Our church has three services and although we may all be at worship on Sundays, it's only through events like the women's dinner that we get to see our church friends all in one room. The meal is served at 7 p.m., and it's served by the men of church - they put on their bow ties and cummerbunds and spirit of service. The dinner is usually simple, but tasty - chicken, green beans and potato casserole this year, plus cheesecake for dessert. After the desserts are served, the program begins - a few seasonal songs by some of the fabulously talented women in the church, and an inspiring message. The theme is usually one I need to hear - slow down, savor the season, learn to say "no" to busyness and yes to the activities that add meaning to the season.This year, a young woman named Sarah Prince inspired us with tales of her missionary life in South Africa.
Every other year or so I host a table - it's a fair amount of work, packing and unpacking the china and linens, but it's always a rewarding evening. I thought I'd share a few pictures from this year's event, plus my very favorite table from a couple of years ago.
This was the table next to mine, decorated by Wendy Methven. She even decorated the chairs -
|Christmas table with fruit and green. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books|
|Faith ornament on table. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books|
|Lucy's Christmas table setting. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books|
|Very fuzzy picture of my Christmas table. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books|
|Lucy's gingerbread tree. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books|
Once I removed the tree centerpiece, I placed a tray of homemade gingerbread men on the table. They were delicious and fragrant, and I encouraged my guests to take several at the end of the evening.
|Gingerbread men. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books|
|Blue Christmas tribute to Elvis. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books|
For my FPC friends, if you have pictures from this year's, or past events, please share them on Facebook or at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will add them to this post.
Text and images copyright Lucy Mercer, 2011.