Monday, December 12, 2011

Gifts From the Kitchen Brunch

     Saturday I had my 19th (I had to make a correction here. I first said 18th but I had counted wrong.)  Christmas brunch with the same little group of people except a few who moved and were replaced with others. I do all the brunch food and have tried to make the table, etc. special for these ladies. We all have had a fun time together year after year.

So, here I am early Saturday morning making sure I have the recipe right!

For the last several years these two have come early to help me with last minute details. And, my daughter is here making pictures.

This year the table had a "woodsey" look.  In an early posting I pictured the branches with moss covered pinecones that I had just found at Tuesday Morning.

I already had the frosty stems from another year. I love the combination.

I have had the three tall silver and glass candles sticks forever! Still like to use them. I bought the three short silver candle holders this year at Michaels at a very reduced price.

I added the silver sleigh bells which gave the look a little something extra.

I found the plaid tablecloth at Goodwill for less than $5.  When I spotted these green and red plates at TJ Maxx I knew they would bring this table setting alive! Then the tiny poinsettia dish from Michael's $1 section was just the finishing touch and made a nice little take-home favor with a chocolate and crushed peppermint candy covered pretzel. The little vintage dish above each plate was filled with fruit salad. The small glasses got juice and the large ones water. 

I shortened the tablecloth and had this piece just the right size for a runner to use here on the tea and mocha punch station.

This picture was made before the candles were lit. Never had thought to use the silver sugar and coffee canisters for candle holders before. They work perfectly.

The other buffet with the food.  I don't know what I was thinking when I selected my menu!  It sure included a lot of sugar!  But, the ham and biscuits are a repeat - seems to be a favorite.

This year I gave them a first time offering that most had never eaten - chocolate gravy.  Yummy on biscuits!!  Just don't use ham and chocolate gravy on the same biscuit!  The fried apples are a requested item and have become a "regular".

This is Pampered Chef's spiral Christmas tree recipe.

This is our happy group. And, I need to explain what I have requested from the very first party.   I sent out the invitation in July for the Christmas brunch in 1993 asking them to start looking for containers that could hold something (food) from their kitchen - one (all alike) for each attendee. I asked that they use their imaginations and the container could be something not normally used for food. This activity with our presenting of our containers of the year is what has made this party different and special. It has been interesting to see what shows up each year. Sometimes the cookies or whatever has been tied to the container!  I think the most unusual one was when my daughter brought hers on a snowman paper lamp. You can see the lamp pictured in my post, "All dignity Restored" So, the following pictures are what they brought this year.

From my daughter-in-law, MaryRose a very pretty holly leaf dish with doughnut holes. She has been on babywatch and didn't plan any baking this time. And, let me say that less than ten minutes ago my son called from the hospital and told me I have a new great grandaughter!  Little Claire was just born!!! Congratulations to Trey and Amanda!

This is a small chip and dip type container from Carrie, my daughter.  It contains her first production from her new cake pop making machine!  They are sitting in a shallow dish that lifts out. Remember you have to envision seven of each thing.  The first years in a larger house I had them place them all out on a large table. At that time there were ten of us so we each did nine. Ninety! It was really neat to see.

This is from Katherine and is a metal box that doesn't open. Unfortunately, she didn't discover that it did not open until she had them home from a Pier One after Christmas sale last year!  She compensated by putting her little loaf cakes on a cube of note paper and tied them up with pretty paper.  I love the box!

Joyce went for this spring look, a metal oval pan.  It contains some good candied popcorn. Joyce has racked up several years of containers!  She has a stock pile to choose from.

This is mine, a Paula Deen two-cup measuring pitcher.  The measurements are on the inside.  The berry sprig and bell were shown in the post where I had a bunch of newly purchased Christmas things.  I cut a bush apart to make individual sprigs.  Mine contains a party mix.

Sarah, has chosen to go the  Bath and Body works route and put her food things in a holiday bag.

Lynda used this clear and metal canister for her cookies.  I love the way she used doilies in between each cookie. She also gave a pretty cloth-backed small picture album and the little santa spoon rest.

Deborah found this unusually shaped jar which she filled with hot chocolate mix.  And, cleverly included a set of measuring spoons.

I know I have asked a lot from the ladies to come up with  new "containers"  each year and I really appreciate that they have gone out of their way to find really neat and special things. Every year several brings their recipe to give also. So, now we start looking for something for next year.  After Christmas sales???????  Can I muster up enough energy to head out early on the 26th?????


  1. Oh my, oh my, what a beautiful tablescape!!!! Love the natural beauty of it all - invoking so much loveliness. This is such a great tradition and you are very blessed to have such close friends.

  2. What a fun and fabulous brunch! And such a wonderful longstanding tradition. Happy holidays to you and yours, Tammy

  3. I saw your comment on Cozy Little House and thought I'd stop by and visit. How lucky you are to have brunch with the same gals for 18 years! Everything looks beautiful too.

  4. What a wonderful idea. There were five of my friends and I that did a similar thing every year until the last two. We went to the same person's home every year. She made a wonderful breakfast, we sat around with our coffee, and exchanged Christmas ornaments. I have some wonderful memories and ornaments from those breakfasts. The hostess passed away a couple years ago, and we have not started it back. She was the center of it and the rest of us, just haven't had the heart to do it. Maybe we can start back.

    Your blog is lovely.

  5. I too saw your comment at Cozy Little House and thought I would visit you. What a gorgeous blog you have. We have a little in common; I was born and grew up in central Florida and six months ago I moved from TN, near Johnson City. I miss living near the mountains, but I'm happy here with my family.


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