Shamrocks for One

What do you do when all of the balls you’ve been juggling start falling to the ground … all at the same time … and the beautiful St. Patrick’s Day tablescape you’d envisioned doing for Tablescape Thursday just can’t happen?  That’s what my week has been like. LUCKY for me no one was coming for dinner! I’m still going to show you something really pretty, but I’m keeping it simple.
Does it get any more simple than a single place setting on a vintage tray … photographed in the only GREEN room in my house?

This beautiful fine bone china was handmade in Galway — yes, Galway IRELAND –by Royal Tara. The pattern name is Trellis Shamrock. I found four 6-piece place settings at auction a few months ago. They came with the shipping receipt showing that they were purchased in 1993 in Ireland… and shipped back to the States.

The family who purchased them was named Sweeney. Now there’s a good Irish name for you!
I guess you can see what else came with them …

This really is a gorgeous set. Sadly for the Sweeneys … it appears to have never been used.

Such beautiful, shapely details …

My Grandma (who I first told you about HERE) was part Irish.  The family name was O’Brien in County Cork Ireland, but it changed to O’Bryant when they came to America … before Grandma was ever born.
Even so, I’ll probably sell this set someday … but I may keep the Sweeney goblet. There was only one of them.

I’ve only known one Sweeney in my life. He was a very dear friend of my oldest daughter. There was only one of him, too …
Army Sgt. Robert W. Sweeney III
Sweeney, 22, of Pineville, Louisiana, died January 10, 2005 in Baghdad, Iraq when an improvised explosive device hit his military vehicle. He was a member of the Army National Guard’s 3rd Battalion, 156th Infantry Regiment, 256th Infantry Brigade, Lake Charles, Louisiana.

During this week of crazy schedules and pretty dishes … I don’t ever want to forget that while I’m visiting Blogland, the real world doesn’t stop. I want to make my time there count … while I still can.  How about you?
Happy St. Patrick’s Day

I’m linking to Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps on the Porch
Thank you for stopping by. Please come again!


  1. Making our time in the real world count…that’s pretty much what St. Patrick achieved spreading the good news in Ireland. I said a little prayer for Sgt. Sweeney; I’m thankful for his love of our country. Thank you for sharing your lovely design. I hope that you keep it…it’s so beautiful. Cherry Kay

  2. Susan..It’s because of Sgt. Sweeney that we are able to sit in our room in front of our computers blogging with our friends and feeling safe. On St. Patricks day with a theme of Luck and everyday that follows we must NEVER forget the sacrific Sgt. Sweeney and others have given to our country. Yes we must all feel LUCKY to live in the USA. Your dishes are beautiful and I hope you will keep them. Luck in the future.

  3. Your Irish dishes are just beautiful!

    I have one son still in the military. Not a day goes by that my thoughts do not turn to the men and woman serving away from home. So sorry for your loss, there just aren’t words.

  4. Hi Susan
    Oh what beautiful dinnerware. Life does get in the way of blogging, but your post is fabulous with just one place setting.

  5. Hi Susan! What a beautiful table you’ve done! I adore your china…waw!, and hand made! It’s gorgeous! I am sorry for St. Sweeney. May God Bless he’s soul. I couldn’t put the pic in the thumbnail, but still I hope you visit me so we can celebrate ol’St. Pat’s Day.

  6. Susan….thank you for your realness. Many times I am scaling back because I have demands on my time…especially this time of year. Your setting is stunning and that china is gorgeous – what a find for you. Thank you also for sharing about Sgt. Sweeney. May God grant all who knew and loved him comfort and peace. My youngest son has enlisted in the Army and will leave this fall for boot camp…I cannot even imagine paying the price this young man’s loved ones have paid. God Bless them and you for keeping his memory alive 🙂


  7. Beautiful Irish china and an even more beautiful tribute to Sgt. Sweeney.
    Blessings and peace to his family and friends.

  8. I couldn’t agree more about making time in the real world count. I love that you stopped to pay tribute to your one of a kind Sweeney.

    I love your dishes, and even the simple single place setting is just beautiful to me. I can only imagine how beautiful it would be set out on the table for a group.

    I also know the feeling of all the balls dropping to the ground. That’s what they did for me, too.

    Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

  9. Very sweet and my heart goes out the family of Robert Sweeney.

  10. Susan, I hear you loud and clear! I have missed you all so much, but the real world is calling my name, too. I am stopping by for a quick visit to give you a hug on St. Patrick’s Day!

    You aren’t going to believe this, but we are probably related. Of course it is about 30 generations back, but still… I descend from Brian Boru who was the progenitor of the clan O’Brian, and I’m assuming you probably descend from him too. I knew I liked you!

    And I like your table! Such lovely things. I’m sorry the Sweenys didn’t use them because beautiful things should be enjoyed. My parents taught me that, and I appreciate the lesson.

    I’m so sorry about your young friend, and I am very sorry for his loved ones. How tragic. I hope and pray that they will all be reunited one day in Heaven.

    Speaking of which have a blessed St. Patrick’s Day.


    Sheila (who still needs to buy some linen cleaner from YOU! I really needed it desperately the other day)

  11. Susan~
    What a lovely way to pay tribute to such a young man. My heart sinks when I think about how many mothers and fathers have lost their ‘babies’. Thank you for reminding us not to take our children’s lives for granted.

  12. Thank you so much for your post! My heart goes out to Sgt Sweeneys family. As a Army mom of 2 currently serving, this hits home. Their sacrifices are the first thing I think of when I get up and the last think of before I close my eyes! On a lighter note, your china is so beautiful. What a treasure you have! Thanks for stopping by my blog!!!

  13. What a beautiful tribute to Sgt. Sweeney.
    Your china is beautiful.

  14. So thankful for our soldiers. This is a lovely tribute to your daughter’s friend. My prayers go out to Sgt. Sweeney’s family and loved ones.

    The china is beautiful. And I agree about taking time for the real world too. All things need balance.

    Enjoy the rest of your weekend.
    Much love.