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Old 03-05-2012, 10:14 PM   #91
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Originally Posted by PrincessFiona60 View Post
We had too much fun as kids and the biggest kid, my Dad, was the instigator.
Another kid for your mother to look after.
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Old 03-05-2012, 10:20 PM   #92
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Another kid for your mother to look after.
For 57 years...
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:17 AM   #93
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Growing up my kids learned the proper utensil for the right food. But not at every meal. I just wanted them to be able to go out into a public place and not be embarrassed. Would any of you recognize the difference between a fork for fish and a fork for the main entree? The fish fork is bigger. The tines are longer. No, I am not trying to show off. It's my mother's teaching coming to the fore. Strange as it may sound, this stupid information came in handy for my youngest. He recently attended a dinner where they had different courses. A black tie event. I had to laugh when he told me he thought I was crazy when I was trying to teach him these things. He ended up thanking me. In his chosen career, he is going to be attending a lot of these events.
My mother was similar, and my husband's was as well. On a day-to-day basis we did not set a perfect table. But on Sundays, we stayed in church clothes and ate from an impeccably set table. Our wine glasses were full of creme soda (which looks enough like champagne). I don't know if, and how often, my younger siblings (I'm 57, the eldest) used it, but I followed my parents into a military lifestyle, and often attended formal dinners. Never had to worry about which fork to use. Can't say I've used a fish fork, though! My mother is a segeants's wife, my MIL had been "in service", a maid. So they both learned it from the bottom up, and wanted to make sure we could be comfortable in formal circumstances. It definitely paid off for us.
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:23 AM   #94
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Family style at my house, no courses!
To me, "courses" are for people with servants. Since I've never so much as had someone in to help me dust, all dinners are family style. If I have few enough people for a sit-down, then I trot out the china, silver, crystal and we make it an occasion. It is still family style, otherwise I have to keep running from dining room to kitchen and never get to sit (the prepared courses, plated, are, as I said, for servants and restaurants). But tonight it is about 20 people. Buffet is the name of the game.
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Old 03-06-2012, 08:39 AM   #95
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My mother was similar, and my husband's was as well. On a day-to-day basis we did not set a perfect table. But on Sundays, we stayed in church clothes and ate from an impeccably set table. Our wine glasses were full of creme soda (which looks enough like champagne). I don't know if, and how often, my younger siblings (I'm 57, the eldest) used it, but I followed my parents into a military lifestyle, and often attended formal dinners. Never had to worry about which fork to use. Can't say I've used a fish fork, though! My mother is a segeants's wife, my MIL had been "in service", a maid. So they both learned it from the bottom up, and wanted to make sure we could be comfortable in formal circumstances. It definitely paid off for us.
Knowledge is always good to have. You ever know when you will need it.
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Old 03-06-2012, 09:27 AM   #96
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Originally Posted by Claire View Post
To me, "courses" are for people with servants. Since I've never so much as had someone in to help me dust, all dinners are family style. If I have few enough people for a sit-down, then I trot out the china, silver, crystal and we make it an occasion. It is still family style, otherwise I have to keep running from dining room to kitchen and never get to sit (the prepared courses, plated, are, as I said, for servants and restaurants). But tonight it is about 20 people. Buffet is the name of the game.
Same here. I can imagine serving soup as "course" and of course dessert and coffee/tea are served as a course. That's enough running around for me. I don't let my guests clear the table, since there is usually someone incompetent leading the others astray. I hate having my sink filled up with dirty dishes.

Now that is one of my pet peeves. I hate when guests put their dirty dishes in my one sink. One year at Solstice a guest helped and cleared dishes into the sink until there wasn't room to put more. I ran the first load in the portable dishwasher, which empties into the sink. I figured it would give them a rinse. When I emptied the sink, I found my brand new electronic thermometer at the bottom. It was, of course, dead. Why did someone put the danged thermometer in the sink?
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Old 03-06-2012, 09:54 AM   #97
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Guests and family are not allowed to clear the dinner table. First of all, because that's no way to treat a guest. SO and I do it as we know where to put stuff so the sink isn't loaded, good knives don't go in the sink and electronics stay where they are supposed to.

I do allow my daughters to clear as they have learned.
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Old 03-06-2012, 10:08 AM   #98
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Guests and family are not allowed to clear the dinner table. First of all, because that's no way to treat a guest. SO and I do it as we know where to put stuff so the sink isn't loaded, good knives don't go in the sink and electronics stay where they are supposed to.

I do allow my daughters to clear as they have learned.
I agree. I was trying to be gracious because they were already doing it when I caught them at it. Now I make it a point that they are informed before the main part of the meal finishes. I have learned to insist. DH knows to stop them too. The problem is that we have to ask them to pass the dirty dishes. There simply isn't enough space in my dining room to walk behind the diners on one side of the table.
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Old 03-06-2012, 11:02 AM   #99
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..I was trying to be gracious because they were already doing it when I caught them at it...

The nerve of some people!

You're right. Once it's happened, there's not much you can do but say thank you.
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Old 03-06-2012, 11:58 AM   #100
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Actually, I was really miffed about the lack of help at our last family dinner here. With two daughter's in law, and two teen grand daughters you'd think I would have had some help but noooooooo.....they all sat on their pretty little tushes the entire time. I was exhausted when everyone left and it was up to Steve and I to continue to work our butts off. Thank goodness I had Steve, or I would have sat and cried.

At this age, I will never turn down help with a dinner!!
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