Grace Notes ~ 12.21.17

1.  Make the inside of your refrigerator a feast for the eye, with see through containers and bowls full of fruit and vegetables. Flowers last longer when refrigerated. Try keeping a small bunch of flowers in the refrigerator. Surprise pleasures delight the most.
2.  Put strawberries in a bowl and leave two with stems on, on the table next to the bowl. Take a flowering sprig and place it off center in the bowl.
3. Serve tea from a porcelain teapot that has been hand decorated in colors that are attractive with your cups and saucers.  Keep it ready on a tray for spontaneous tea rituals. 
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4. Serve hot perfumed freshen up towels after you’ve served artichokes. 

5. Buy some new dishtowels to add cheer in the kitchen.
6. Have all your knives professionally sharpened.
7. Hang a string of garlic on the wall and use it.
8. Put eggs in an old wire basket.
9. Make a ritual of buying or baking fresh bread and leave a whole loaf out in view, on a wooden cutting board. Food set out attractively whets your appetite.
10. Store candles in the refrigerator, they’ll burn longer.
11. After baking apple pie, put on rack to cool and have a pile of apples on the counter next to it.
12. Store lemons, limes and oranges in a see through glass bowl in the refrigerator. Put out on the counter when you are cooking.  Pretty and useful.
13. Keep butter in a pottery crock. 
14. Marinate a chicken cut in quarters in freshly squeezed orange juice and fresh sliced ginger root, then bake slowly for 2 hours at 250゚.
15. On a cold afternoon, baked chocolate chip cookies and leave them out on cookie rack, nothing says home faster than this smell. Or you can give some of the cookies away to an elderly neighbor or a neighbor’s children.
16. The next time you make toast, butter it, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and place in the toaster oven for a few more seconds.
17. Make a ritual of weekend breakfast and serve scrambled eggs, croissants and crisp bacon.  A real treat. Add a selection of marmalades and jams.
18. Keep a food inspirational book in the kitchen covered with pretty paper and use it for menu and recipe clippings and to jot down ideas this way everything will be in one place and you will have inspiration handy for new ideas when you plan your meals.
19. Turn a plate of fresh fruit into a still life and place it in your bedroom to feast the eye and satisfy in late night craving.
20. Keep a pepper mill on the table.
21. Use place cards at your next dinner party people will sit where you have put them and it makes the evening more festive it’s also practical to know the names of your dinner partners.
22. Save perfume bottles to use as individual bud vases.  Select a variety of shapes and sizes and different blossoms and buds.
23. Have a tiny present for each dinner cast. 

24. By an old farm table for your kitchen. This might be one of the best investments you’ll ever make because of the thousands of hours of pleasure it will bring. Kitchen tables are where children do homework and where families gather for meals and in between. 
25. Tŕeat yourself to new colorful potholders.  Make it a seasonal purchase they get a lot of use and can look tired.
26. Collect a variety of bright paper napkins.  Paper hand towels are great to use as napkins too. Stripes, polka dots, colorful solids and flower prints spice up a meal and give zest to a table setting.  Variety doesn’t cost a penny more.
27. Spread a pretty table cloth over your coffee table and serve tea to a friend in front of the fire.
28. Use napkin rings, ribbons, and/or dried flowers to dress up your every day table. 

29. Call a busy friend and make a date to meet for an early breakfast visit to catch up.
30. Make Sunday night special, create a ritual that punctuates the end of one week and the beginning of the next.
31. Retrieve those pretty plates you have hidden away in a kitchen cabinet.
32. Begin a “New Attitude” diet today.  Make a list of 10 reasons why you want to lose weight, repeat them each morning when you awake and whenever resolve weakens. Indulge yourself once a week with a special low calorie treat like a big ball of raspberries. 

Pages 81-87

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