Monday, July 7, 2008

Lunch on the Deck

The flower-filled pots on our deck are lovely right now -- much more so than the garden, which has nothing in bloom currently save a few stragglers from spring.  The deer have discovered my carpet roses, and I cannot keep a daylily or cone flower from them.  Sooner or later, they will eat even the bee balm, which I thought might be unpalatable to them because of it's sharp fragrance.  Not so.  I really need a fence, but that is not in the cards right now.  

So I garden on the deck.

And in order to enjoy the show, we love to have as many meals out here as we can.  Here is a table setting I like to play with.  The larger dish is part of my every day set, and the bowl is from a set I bought at the thrift store last year.  

I can't help it, I'm addicted to dishes.

I often try several settings and placemats before I decide what I like best.  That is just part of the fun for me.  I guess I am making up for a childhood filled with mucking out stables and playing in the barn.  Now I set tables for fun.

Fifty-one years old, and I'm finally learning to play house.

We had to dodge the raindrops this weekend, but we were able to enjoy a nice meal or two outside.  How about you?


  1. Mary, you play house all you want - I enjoy the pictures. Everything looks lovely.

    We were unable to dodge the rain because there was so much. They even had to postpone the fireworks.

  2. I'd love to have a TEA PARTY on your patio!! It looks soooo lovely!

  3. Great pictures! We love to eat outside too, on our porch!
    Have a great day!

  4. Hi Mary -
    Your flowers and dishes are lovely. Such a nice place to eat. We had raindrops on and off through the weekend, too.

  5. The weather was lovely here in Michigan this weekend and we ate outside every day. I sat in the shade and sipped ice tea and enjoyed my garden. I enjoy watching you play with your dishes nearly as much as you enjoy playing:>)

  6. I am terrible at doing the place setting thing. Mine never look like your pictures. So keep on bringing them on, one day I may get it!!!

  7. That is just beautiful...I am glad you like to play house!

  8. A fellow dishaholic here...I love when you show your china! I have a set from my mother that is very similar. I just love the gold lacy border. When I have guests for dinner, I spend about 5 minutes thinking what I will serve and about an hour thinking what china and linens will work! It's all about the tablescape!!!!!!!

  9. Mary, I have deer too. I put up black plastic fencing w/ the green posts and hung soap slivers around. I didn't circle the whole garden just enough to confuse them. Having a dog should help you. Do you let im in the garden?

    You can see the posts on RMS here

    Good luck, it's a constant battle.

    I love you table settings as well. I love to "play" w/ my dishes too. I collect Blue Ridge and love to set theme tables. ie, yellow flowers, apples, red flowers, etc.

    Have a great day and thanks for your great blog.


  10. so many lovelies at your place!!

    we had sandwiches by the pool on Sat. night!! right before the thunderstorms hit :)

  11. There's definitely nothing wrong being addicted to dishes!!! :) I love your napkin and how it goes with the tablesetting.

  12. It's so nice eating meals outside. Your place setting is lovely.
    We had some rain on the weekend too.

  13. What a lovely place setting. I too, practice and try several settings sometimes. I usually design the setting around the menu.

    We had a beautiful, sunny weekend and today it's raining.

    - Suzanne

  14. I can fully relate to that dish addiction. :)

  15. We've somehow managed to create an oasis for the larger wildlife in our communities that now appears to be coming back to bite a lot of folks as they watch their expensive landscape plantings dissapear over night.

    There have always been deer around our semi-rural home, but now we've got a very large population of turkeys. I'm also seeing a lot more red fox and weasels than I used to.

    You can always consider ferns as a mass planting if the deer continue to consume everything in your yard. They won't eat ferns (which is why you see acres and acres of mature ferns on the forest floor in many forested areas with large deer populations).

    It looks like I'm the only man to be replying here, but I'd really enjoy a lunch on your deck! Sometimes, I think the English had it right about insisting on the refinements of life regardless of where they were or what they were doing...even in the wilds. You set a very attractive table for lunch!

    PS...I've left a reply to your latest comment on my blog, Mary.

  16. Playing house is fun and I hope you enjoy yourself! Can I come play? I have to tell you, when I read you have "deer" issues, I felt a bit of "envy". While I understand they can be such pests, I couldn't help but feel a bit jealous because we never or ever will, have a problem like that. I live in suburbia where my biggest pest is my neighbors cranking their music to loud. LOL! We to have meals on our patio. It's refreshing and the breezes that come down from the mountains and in from the oceans, are always abundant. I love it.

  17. Oops!

    Forgot to mention wormwood as a very effective natural barrier. It was commonly used as a perimeter planting around gardens with open woods nearby. I learned about it from my maternal grandfather whose mountain garden always had produce despite the heavy deer population on the farm.

    For many years I had a very tightly spaced border of wormwood around my wife's large garden. It kept the woodchucks, racoons, possums, and deer out of the garden. By mid-summer I would also add a heavy application of blood meal as a supplement.

  18. I buy dishes from thrift store too! The setting looks beautiful and if we could banish flies forever I'd eat every meal outside. There is something so relaxing about it.

  19. I have a dish fetish, too. You are never to old to play house, may I come over and play?! Eating outdoors on the china always reminds me of Victorian times when they took their dishes and furniture on picnic lunches. We eat out on the patio almost every day in the good weather.

  20. Your container flowers are so pretty! I love dishes, too. That bowl in the center is just my style. Thanks for sharing your play time with us.

  21. Hi Mary! Your dishes are just pretty and love the fact you still like to play! So do I! I don't want to grow up - no sirree! Come by to see me tomorrow - I'm having a tea party.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia :)

  22. Thankfully, the deer haven't yet discovered my phlox or roses, or maybe - just maybe - the Deer Out that I used this year is working.

    I spied my first Japanese beetle of this year, so now it will be War On!

    Karen in DE

  23. Wow the deer so went after my daylilies in the backyard too. Thank goodness they didn't find the ones in the side yard.

    Your home always looks so peaceful...

  24. Mary:

    So lovely, you are so talented. Hard to believe you were raised on a farm (with animals). Your posts are so very feminine and pleasing to the eye. Thank you for sharing....

    Debbie Kay

  25. pretty pretty - love the napkins with those dishes.

    What kind of camera do you use to take those really close up nature shots on your other blog? wonder if mine would do that?

    thanks for the comment too!


  26. Oh what a perfect place to eat the flowers are so pretty and your dishes are just beautiful :)


  27. When you play house... you play house. I love those every day plates and the thrift store find, wow. I love your deck with all the flower pots. Gee can I come for breakfast. lunch and dinner. lol :} you have such great taste. Boy I need new dishes. Oh and thank you for your kind comment, I will be taking lots of photos of the creative landscaping out front. I hope it looks as good like I see it.

    Have a great week.

  28. Every time I see one of these posts wih the place settings, I just want to be there! I'm exactly the same age as you, too. Just realized that.

    Those naughty deer. Yes, you need a fence. It will be in the cards when you start making money with your photography, don't you think? Yes, this could happen.

  29. You're never too old to let your inner girly girl out! Very pretty table setting.


  30. ....and you play house SO BEAUTIFULLY.



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