One last fling before school starts back. The last hoorah.
Guess the joke was on us. Seems that the Earth has shifted again and school started back on Thurs! Yep, for the first time in my life time, the teachers started in July. (The very first year I taught was the first time teachers ever started in Aug … the last week of Aug!) So my friends and I raised a glass today to salute our “not being there” on this most memorable occasion. Salute!
Ok, we didn’t, but we would if we’d thought about it. 😀
We did though talk about those days of not being there … and yeah, we’re all still good with it. We’re doing just fine, thanks.
And for our friends who are still there, we feel your pain. We’re just feeling it while sleeping in, shopping, lunching with friends, doing projects with the grands … yeah. But you know we’re here if you need us. Just don’t text before 10 a.m. We need our beauty sleep.
If you follow me on Pinterest, you may know that I have a Top of the Table board. Unless I already have a board for a specific theme, I browse this board when I’m getting ready to entertain to get ideas for table decor. I’ve collected up several different sets of dishes, so I look for inspiration to go along with what I have.
When looking for inspiration for this lunch, I decided on using this yellow, black and white color scheme. At first I thought, why did I choose these colors? They’re too somber for summer. But once I started putting it altogether I knew why and I was glad I did. Such a fun decor!
I already had everything needed except for the fresh flowers … oh, and the tablecloth and napkins. But they’re no big deal, because I’ve found a place online that I get them to match and they’re relatively cheap. Ok, they’re cheap. So I’m getting quite a collection of them as well.
The crystal and silver are from the family and the napkin “rings” are actually leftovers from my Paris themed Bunco … which was pink and black. I love those little dessert plates, which I just happened to spot, one of the rare times I shopped at TJ Maxx.
As soon as my husband saw the table he said, “Southern Miss colors”. Of course. Being a Southern Miss fan he would automatically think that. Never crossed my mind and I’m the alumni. Figures. But sometimes he’s better at this stuff than me … but don’t tell him I said so. And he’s so sweet he even asked me if I didn’t want black glasses to match … because he’d seen them. 😉
I actually bought these yellow plates to use in my next Bunco (different color scheme … sorry, Top Secret). I love the pattern on them. I got them on a great sale at Target online. So glad I purchased them.
And this hourglass I saw on one of those vintage Daily Deals sites and fell in love. I like unusual pieces. Once it was unpacked though I didn’t really know where to put it, so I ended up sitting it on the dining table to get it up and away from my 2 yr old grandson. Now to keep it away from the adults!
It ended up being a great spot for it to land. I’ve been incorporating it into the centerpiece as a spot of whimsy or interest.
And those flowers … Walmart! Love how they turned out. I’m not great with flowers, so if I can turn something out that I’m satisfied with …. well, I pretty much impress myself. Yeah. Flowers are ALWAYS a crap shoot with me. 🙂
Somehow today, lunch became all about the salad. I was looking for something lighter, but trying to hit on something that would satisfy everyone. I also wanted to make sure it would be worthy enough for those friends who were having to drive a considerable distance. I’m not sure how, but the menu came to consist of mostly salad … chicken salad on croissants, pasta salad in case you didn’t like the chicken salad, Strawberry Pecan Salad in the place of fruit salad and then Banana Split Dessert.
The menu might have been lighter, but it was very filling. Yum!
Chicken Salad with Pecans and Cranberries
I don’t have a recipe for this because I had to keep working with it to get it right. The chicken is mixed with mayo, 8 oz cream cheese, pecans, cranberries, 2 T Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 t garlic, fresh ground pepper, and Paula Dean seasoning.
This was supposed to be Macaroni Salad, but I’m in love with Rotini pasta, so there it is. I know. Even if the pasta was not right for the salad, the taste was right for the pasta. Good!
Again, no recipe because I had to work with it. 12 oz Rotini pasta, 3 green onions, 1/2 C sweet pickle relish, 1 1/2 T red wine vinegar, seasoning salt, fresh ground pepper, mayo, sour cream, 1/2 C shredded cheddar. Oh, I even had to add some milk to get it creamy. I can’t stand dry pasta and I didn’t want it with too much mayo. But in hind sight, I think part of the problem was that the warm noodles melted the cheese and caused it to dry/clump up. So next time I’ll make sure to rinse and cool the pasta well.
Strawberry Pecan Salad fixings
First, don’t pay any attention to the Menu in the background. 🙂 That’s our weekly dinner menu … which my husband loves. I cook what he likes and the menu let’s him know what he’s going to have for the week … he just doesn’t know what day. That’s the cook’s option. ha!
Anyway, back to the salad …
This Strawberry Pecan Salad is great. It has it’s own recipe for Poppyseed Dressing which is so good and I thought I hated poppyseeds! So glad I tried it! I already have friends texting me for the recipe.
strawberries, blueberries and mandarin orange slices
lightly carmelized pecans
You can get the recipe here along with the recipe for the Poppyseed Dressing. This is soooo good! Oh, I used Spring Mix for the lettuce and Feta instead of Goat cheese. I also left off the onions. Blech! And no chicken, since I already had that covered. Oh oh … this is the recipe I use for the lightly carmelized pecans. Hint: cook on med heat so as not to scorch the sugar.
Banana Split Dessert
And of course, the best part … the dessert! I should just start with dessert.
This dessert has a lot of sentimental memories for me. My dad’s wife, Carolyn, use to make it when I was a kid. It was way more than I was use to and it tasted like heaven to me. I thought it was the best thing I’d ever eaten. Some of my fondest memories of Carolyn revolve around food/the kitchen. She was a great cook. We miss her so much.
Today, this dessert was still a winner. When friends ask you for the recipe, you know you have a hit. This dessert has a graham cracker crust with a creamy cream cheese filling, bananas, strawberries and pineapple topped with Cool Whip, hot fudge, pecans and cherries.
Recipe at the link above … minus the sprinkles. I don’t like sprinkles and they weren’t on the original recipe. I also added strawberries.
Last was some leftover Brick Street Chocolate Cake that I had in the freezer from last weekend’s guests. The cake freezes well and I’m sure will be polished off tomorrow when the family comes for lunch.
Thanks for stopping by the blog and if you’ve got some friends that you haven’t seen in a while, give them a call to do lunch. When the days are gone you’ll never get them back … the same is true for your friends.