SEASONAL SIMPLICITY: Practicing the Disciplines

It’s unseasonably warm here in East Tennessee, and everywhere I look I see both the dead foliage of Winter and the early harbingers of Spring. It’s that “in between” season, and I’m never quite sure how to respond to it. I’m just a little afraid to fully embrace the beauty of Springtime … because it’s not unheard of here to have sub-freezing temperatures in April. I just try to wait patiently, but that takes a lot of practice and discipline, and sometimes I do that better than others.

It’s also one of those “in between” times at my house.  Renaissance Man just returned from a trip yesterday … and he leaves for Brazil tomorrow.  Today is all the time there is to catch up on laundry and conversation and family happenings.  But since he’s also working, I’ll sit here a minute and visit with you while I listen to the dryer tumble in the background.

I wish I could tell you that when my sweet husband is out of town, I sit down to a beautiful table and eat the healthiest dinner in the world.  I wish I could tell you that.  I’m afraid I’m not usually that disciplined.  But perhaps this time while he’s gone, I’ll do it.

I’ll cut the few fresh flowers in the garden, place them in a tiny etched crystal vase, and set them atop a fabulous old chippy-paint mirror.

Then I’ll pull out the rarely-used purple damask napkins …

… and a book I studied awhile back.  I’ll read through it again to refresh my memory — and check my progress.

I’ll add a few pretties “just because.”  That’s always a welcome treat, don’t you think?

I’ll mix some old German porcelain salad plates with a contemporary dinner plate … then mix it all up again by adding antique pearl-handled sterling flatware.

I think this would be the perfect setting for sitting and contemplating.  Where am I doing well … and where do I need more discipline?   Those are always timely questions, but perhaps during this season of Lent they’re especially timely.

Me?  Sit-down, healthy eating is one of the things I’m working on.  The other I told you about the last time we were together, and I’m going to use the new LinkyFollowers on my sidebar to help me … and hold me accountable.  You can even help me.
They’re both on my Sally List …

What about you?  Are you feeling well-disciplined these days … or are things a bit out of kilter?  What areas are you working on?  Have you put them on your Sally List?

How’s your list coming, by the way?
Tell us how you’re doing … so we can all encourage you!

I’ll be partying at Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps on the Porch!

The rest of the story…
Disciplines of a Godly Woman by Barbara Hughes
Antique mirror – auction find
Gibson “Nova Scroll” dinner plate – Big Lots
C. Tielsch, pattern Cti50, salad plate – auction find  Available; contact me if interested
King’s Crown “Thumbprint” beverage glasses – auction find
Antique mother-of-pearl/sterling flatware – auction find
Damask napkins – auction find  Available; contact me if interested
Monogram “N” linen coasters – gift from a friend
Battenburg lace table runner – auction find
Enamel perfume holder – auction find
Etched crystal vase – auction find
Flowers – Renaissance Man’s garden


  1. What a pretty table you have set there, Susan. Your hubby is gone quite a bit, isn’t he? Anyway your table is just gorgeous. I am working on my list of organizing and also gave up flour and sugar last July…I am keeping on it! xo Diana

  2. Excellent post and so very inspiring to me right now. I used to take pains to set a nice table when the girls were home, even when Dad wasn’t. Sometimes, I set a nice place setting for myself these days, but way too often, I just fix a simple plate.

    I think I need to do some serious thinking about the discipline. Why, you might even see a tablescape for one inspired by you!

  3. Slowing down enough to create a lovely setting just for me…now that’s something for which I need to strive. The purple damask napkins are so unusual and wonderful. Thanks for inviting us for a peak at your beautiful design. Cherry Kay

  4. Oh everthing is so lovely! The purple napkins are wonderful and I love that antique ivory flatware.