Dishes Can Be Both Festive and Functional
Writer / Carmen Mills
We all have to cook from time to time, whether it’s for fun or necessity. I personally have done it to feed my family, but after several years I found myself getting burned out. It seemed like I generally made the same boring menu week after week. Then it got to the point where I just didn’t want to cook at all, but still did. I had also started using practical plastic dishes because I had young children at the time, so on top of being bored with cooking, there was no excitement in setting the table for dinners. Since I wasn’t concerned about the way the table looked, it was easy to let everyone eat in front of the TV on the couch.
Put this all together and what do you think happens? Well, you stop eating as a family, catching up on the events of the day. Then, that moves into watching television and eating in the living room. I am by no means saying that eating in the living room is bad. It just seemed like my family was losing touch with each other due to lack of conversation. It seems to spiral from one problem into another.
There is a store in our town that I had never been to – New Kitchen Store in Walkerton. I had driven by it several times but never stopped in. On this particular cold winter day I thought, “Let’s take a look to see what this place has to offer.” To my surprise, I couldn’t believe what I saw. There were beautiful dishes displayed in seasonal settings, different kinds of Christmas settings, cardinals, snowmen, and on and on.
The next display was Valentine-inspired with a touch of snowflakes. They even had Saint Patrick’s Day colors, followed by Easter. My mind was reeling with visions of how my family meals could look and feel if I were to implement a few of these pieces on my dining room table. For the first time in a long time, I started to feel excited about the idea of setting a beautiful table for my family.
There was one particular dinner pattern I quickly fell in love with (yes I know – falling in love with dishes when I didn’t even like to cook that much). I didn’t buy the whole set at one time, but rather slowly bought different pieces week by week until I had the entire set. In the meantime I was looking up new recipes I could serve once I had the dinnerware.
When I finally had enough pieces to put on the table, my attitude towards cooking had dramatically changed. By then my family was starting to notice. My daughters even wanted to know if they could help out with preparing some of the meals or setting the table. We were starting to have fun and looked forward to eating together as a family. To this day my kids expect me to use the Christmas set during the holidays.
It’s really hard to believe that a set of new dishes could have changed how I look at entertaining my family. I’m still not the best cook but at least I make an effort. I use the same set to decorate for the Holidays. I had never thought about using dishes as decorations. It’s a creative way to make your home festive and functional all at the same time.
I still like to go back to New Kitchen Store to see what new displays they have. There’s always a fresh, different item I want try out. Who knows? Maybe you’ll find something you like too.