Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A Renaissance Christmas Eve

This year for Christmas Eve we mixed it up
a little and changed the Great Room into
a Renaissance dining room.

After removing the couch and some chairs and the coffee and sofa
table, we set up a long table in front of the fireplace.

About ten years ago we had created a Renaissance dinner
like this and my three youngest had dressed up as
serving girls and pages and served our adult friends
as we sat to dinner. 

We had Mannheim Steamroller music on the other day
and my two youngest boys were saying how much
they had loved that and wished they had been
able to sit at the Renaissance table.

So of course we decided to surprise everyone with 
Renaissance Dinner
for Christmas Eve this year.

We had a beautiful tapestry type fabric that we had used
for the first dinner and we placed it over two
folding tables.

The dinner was to be utensilless.

The center of the table was decked out with fresh
and silk greenery and three candelabras.

The look kept changing as the sun was setting, giving
such a pretty glow to everything.

I even captured some of the blue hour in photos.

We used an assortment of pewter goblets and
bowls.  They were so pretty with the reflection
of the candles and fireplace on them.

The soup was to be drunk from the bowls.

We had to laugh because the little children
didn't like that idea and
  ran to the kitchen to get spoons.
I thought they would love to drink their soup.

We served sparkling apple juice in the goblets.

It was fun to hear the oohs and aahs as they came through
the door.

A twelve foot table was a beautiful and grand presentation.

After the soup, 

they were served cornish game hens and potato wedges.

Once they understood that the game hens weren't baby chickens,
they loved eating this with their hands.

Our traditional Christmas Eve dish is king crab legs
and sourdough bread.  

We did allow kitchen shears to be used to help
with the crab.

It ended up being a very magical evening and it
was so fun to have all fifteen (plus 2 infants)
around the long table.  

Dessert was chocolates and  an assortment of goodies.

We finished with a live Nativity acted out by the children
and presents.

Merry Christmas from our house to yours.

I will be posting with


Chocolat - French for Chocolate. I adored chocolate from a young age when I had to sneak in the cupboard to find where my mother had hidden the Nestle's Chocolate Chips. Having read about the famous chocolat shoppes in Paris, when I finally got there I was determined to try a chocolate from every Paris shoppe. I invite you to share my adventures in creating, in travel, and in life.


  1. Jacqueline, your table looks breath taking and with your description of how the evening unfolded, I can just imagine the magic in the air. You always make the visits with family and guests a special event and I've enjoyed reading about them over this past year.
    Have a wonderful time for the rest of the holiday.

  2. So magical, so special. What beautiful memories you are creating for your family. Happy Holidays! Patty

  3. Jacqueline, this was such a fun idea! I know your family just loved it! Your table is beautiful, as always! Hope you're still enjoying the holiday!

  4. What a magical evening that must have been Jacqueline! You are so talented with your entertaining and tablescape skills! xo

  5. Let me join their ah and ohs choir...
    Everything looks amazing, Jacqueline.
    I felt so wonderfully welcomed just by looking through the pictures and reading your description I can imagine how Blessed your Family feels when witnessing your care and love.

    Wishing you untold blessings,unseen angels, unexpected gifts and all of God's precious love at Christmas and always,


  6. Great idea..what a lot of devotion to move furniture etc..
    You are one of a kind:)

    You should have seen my table..LOL:)4 boys under 7..a smallish dining room with big furniture and 6 adults..

    This is magnificent!

  7. Wow, how beautiful, Jacqueline! Everything is just gorgeous and I can see why there would be oooos and ahhhhs. I hope you can a wonderful Christmas with your family :)

  8. Looks like you had a magical Christmas Jacqueline! The table is very pretty and the dinner sounds like fun:@)

  9. Beautiful! We were in American Fork for three days and just returned home a few hours ago. The snow flurries were so beautiful!!! I loved Utah!

  10. Delightful inspiration! What a great evening.

  11. Such a beautiful Christmas Eve celebration!


  12. Such a beautiful holiday table setting. How awe inspiring!
    A fun celebration, indeed.

  13. Heck, yes, I'll be there were a lot of oooohhs! and aaaahhhs! going on! SO pretty! The view from the window is just gorgeous, and who wouldn't like dining in front of that beautiful fireplace with that rockin' tree to close at hand??!??! This is a wonderful room to eat in!!! I love the pewter bowls at each place setting. Very chic! The table covering is gorgeous, too!!! The pattern is really striking. I like the way you worked to visually connect the elements of the centerpiece with the greenery. With a table that long, that really is a must! You WOULD think that children in particular would be thrilled to sip their soup from the bowl, but you have taught them too well! :-) This is a gorgeous table, Jacqueline, and I am so happy everyone had a good time! Have a safe and Happy New Year!!! I'm looking forward to your 2013 creations!

  14. Jacqueline, you are such a creative soul! I love this idea, and it definitely deserves ooohhs and aaahhs. What a treat for your family! Looking forward to seeing all the creative ideas you have for 2013.......Happy New Year! ~ Sarah

  15. What a beautiful setting and a beautiful table. So nice that your children got to be guests this time. What a wonderful memory you have created.

  16. This is a great idea -- so creative and imaginative. I left a comment earlier from my iPad, but I am still trying to figure it out, and I see it did not turn up here!

    Anyway, everything is just beautiful.

  17. Wow, I love the Renaissance table, how brilliant! I admire your ability to have children eating with their fingers in such an elegant setting, but they were probably so delighted to be treated as grown ups! I am going to keep this in mind for next year when we will have 14 adults and 10 children, one long table would be crazy fun! Thanks for all the beautiful photos, Happy New Year

  18. I guess you DID get some oohs and aahs as your guests arrived! What a gorgeous setting you created! The menu looked divine, too. What a magical evening!

  19. Your table is beautiful, Jacqueline! The way you served your meal as well as the food you chose are the stuff of which memories are made! Also wanted to say I love te view out your window! It's spectacular. I wish you and your family joy, faith, peace, hope, love, and health in 2013.
    xo Beth

  20. Beautiful post. Gorgeous silver tablescape!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Hope you had a dazzling Christmas.
    Hope to see you on my blog:)

    A Very Happy New Year to you and yours!

    Greetings from Singapore~ Sanghamitra

  21. Oh what a beautiful party, Jacqueline, love the color of the tablecloth and the white china. Gorgeous setting, wonderful idea and post.

  22. I can just hear the response now as everyone entered this magical space. You do make it fun even for us who are not there!

  23. You do the most fun parties for your family, Jacqueline! I thought I heard oohing and ahhing on Christmas Eve. Happy New Hear to you!!

  24. Such an amazing celebration!!!

    Merry Christmas.

    - The Tablescaper

  25. Lovely! What a special and memorable evening.

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  27. Your dinner was so elegant and exciting as well as educational for the children. It should be in a magazine. I know the live nativity was meaningful also. That is what Christmas is all about. So glad your family was so excited with oohs and aahs that made you feel good. The food sounds wonderful.

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  29. This has got to be the most unique Christmas dinner I've come across in a while. Love, love, love it! At the same time, I'm flabbergasted at the logistics of pulling this off. For example, how and where did you find room to cook 15 Cornish hens? Your home is absolutely beautiful. That view out the window is stunning. What an incredible setting to go with such a great dinner concept! Please share more details, like, did you serve bread? What about veggies? Did you provide water bowls to rinse the fingers? If not, how did you keep greasy fingers away from such a marvelous tablecloth? I think I might like to do something like this in the future so any advice will be welcomed.

  30. Bonjour Jacqueline
    I'm always a young girl
    Emerveillée by all your décos and inspiration
    I love your Christmas and everything...
    Special greetings from Cameroon
    Wish all the best with your family


  31. I see that you are getting the anonymous spam comments too. I have been getting them for a few weeks now. The table is gorgeous and I love the idea of the dinner!!! What a fun evening! We used to have a very large, traditional, 7 course Polish Christmas eve dinner for 20 or more. We would swap out the living and dining room and set up a long table like this too. It was so much fun, but sadly alot of the people who came are now deceased. Thanks for sharing this, it brought back fond memories, Jacqueline. Have a happy, healthy and blessed new year. XO, Pinky

  32. Jacqueline,
    It is so beautiful and such a fun dinner!!!! That is so funny that your well mannered children wanted spoons! LOL Your home is so beautiful and you have such a giving heart. I'll bet your grands have such fun with you. I love your fireplace and the Christmas tree is gorgeous, you have so many, I bet you love all the decorating...I do!
    Hearts to you and yours!

  33. YOU girl,
    are so much fun!
    I asked you before to teach me how to get this stuff done, I need a time table of when to start working on what, It always takes me longer to do everything, I tink it is my perfectionism getting in the way. By the time dinner is finished, everyone is a little miffed with me becasue it is 8 pm or 8:30. I just can't seem to get the timing down right.! Do you make dessert the day before, set the table the day before since it is out of the kitchen? I really need suggestions...I try to make it be fun, but everyone is frustrated by the time we sit down and I am sad and disappointed that they are not enjoying it or appreciating it. I KNOW that if I can have it ready on time, that would make all the difference. Any suggestions???? PLEASE HELP!!! LOL
    You could do a post about it, just for me???? or just email me!
    thanks! hugs,


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