Thursday, February 5, 2015

A Valentine For A Friend

I dedicate this table today to a dear friend who passed away two weeks ago. It was not unexpected, just much quicker than anticipated, and tremendously difficult; my heart is sad.  I know we normally associate Valentine's Day with romantic love, but, for me, I have always thought of it as a time to express love for all those special people in our lives who surround us with their presence, and gift us with their warmth, humor, support, and encouragement.  Judy was one of those people in my life.  You know how much it means to have a friend who is there through all the times in your life, both good and bad.  For over 40 years, Judy was such a friend to me. But, I don't want this to be a sad post, because Judy and I had too much fun together to let sad thoughts be her legacy. So, I'm going to remember her today as my shopping mate: one of our favorite activities throughout the years!  Judy was one of those people whose entire home was decorated for every season.  Every tabletop, wall shelf and hutch would reflect the time of year! We'd even keep each other informed about what store had the best available items for a particular time of year. In fact, many of the components of this table were purchased with Judy by my side, as we ambled up and down the aisles of TJ Maxx, HomeGoods, Steinmart and Marshalls!  We also loved to go antiquing.  She was with me when I purchased some of the items on this table. Special memories, for sure.

This Year's Valentine's Day Table:

How It Was Created:

I started with a red tablecloth that I generally use for Christmas.

I added the new lace tablecloth I found while antiquing.

I started my dish stack with a ruffled placemat I found for 98 cents at Pier One! I am using it as a charger.

I then added these white square plates I found while shopping with Judy at Shinoda Design Center (one of our favorite haunts!).

Next I added red plates that I recently got from a church rummage sale. At 25 cents a piece, I couldn't resist, especially with Valentine's Day around the corner.

The next plate is a square melamine plate from Target. Honestly, the melamine dishes are so pretty nowadays, they really do mix n' match with ceramic plates quite nicely.

I topped the stack with plates that Judy and I found at HomeGoods on one of our trips together.  It is marked Room Creative, susani red.  I really liked the pattern on it.

The place setting was completed with red napkins, white ceramic napkin rings whose rose design seemed appropriate for Valentine's, red flatware from Walmart, and wine glasses from Dollar Tree (a new purchase this year). Note the precious hearts on the glasses.

I knew my centerpiece would feature a rose topiary I had purchased last year. Judy had told me last year that CVS Pharmacy was having a sale on their Valentine's Day items and this was one of the things I bought. I knew it had to be a part of my table this year.  It is sitting on an appetizer plate and flanked with crystal candleholders. I also surrounded the centerpiece with heart garland. At the last minute, I added a heart-topped wine bottle stopper I found at the church rummage sale. Isn't it cute?

Other accents include a heart dish I found at TJ Maxx many years ago (Judy found one as well that day!) and heart-shaped dishes from Michael's (I've added battery-operated candles to them to add some glow; as well as faux rose petals).

A special addition to this table, is the cake topper from my wedding 26 years ago.  It seemed fitting for a Valentine's Day table.  Funny memory about this topper. When my hubby-to-be at the time and I found it, its figures had blond hair and the flowers were white. So he set up a pedestal, placed the figurine on top and meticulously painted the blond hair brown, and made the flowers red, since that's what my wedding flowers were planned to be.  I can still see him crouched over the figurine, a bright light beaming on his work using a tiny brush to make the couple look more like us. It makes me smile just to think of that scene.

So this Valentine's Day table is dedicated to the memory of a friend whose company made so many days brighter.  I will always hold her memory in my heart. When you see your special friends again be sure and hug them tightly when it's time to say good-bye.  The joy and comfort they give to us and share with us cannot be measured.

Enjoy your Valentine's Day. Hopefully, it will be a day of shared affection and warm friendship.

I'll be linking up to Susan's Tablescape Thursday at,
Laurie's Valentine Par-tay at, and
Christine's Link-It! party at
 Be sure and check out these fun blogs and share in all the creativity. Thank you, ladies, for your efforts to keep these link up parties going!

I absolutely love reading your comments.  Thank you for taking the time to visit!


  1. Rose, I just tried to post a long comment here and it did not appear. I hope this one goes through. so sorry for the loss of your friend and your tribute table to her is lovely. Happy Valentine's Day!

  2. Oh Rosie, I am so sorry about your friend Judy~ I know she is grinning from ear to ear looking at this gorgeous table you set in her memory! It is just adorable, pure red and white pleasure! Love your plate stack, I almost bought those polka dot plates at Target, so cute! Your cake topper is so cute for an added touch! Love it all and your sweet memories~

  3. Oh so pretty Rosie! What a beautiful tribute to your dear friend Judy. The story of your husband painting the cake topper for your wedding cake is so sweet, what a lovely memory of your wedding.

    I love the red and white classic colors for Valentine's Day. You have a perfect balance of the red to the white in your beautiful VDay tablescape. I love the HG plates, they complement the Target plates wonderfully. I am waiting for the sun to come out so I can take the pictures of my table. I did a red and white table too.

  4. I commented several hours ago too. First I would like to say this is a beautiful tribute to your friend Judy. She would be so proud of you. Second, I adored the story of your husband hand painting the cake topper for your wedding cake. And third, Your table is beautiful..... Candy

  5. Rosie, so sorry for your loss, but what a beautiful tribute to a wonderful friend. Love does come in many forms, and a girlfriend's love is ever so sweet. Your table is beautiful, especially that it is sprinkled with wonderful treasures and memories.

  6. What a beautiful tribute to a good friend! Valentine's Day should be dedicated to ALL of our loved ones, not just our 'honeys.' This table is full of wonderful memories (including your cake topper).

  7. How very, very pretty! I would not have been able to resist those red plates either! They are great and versatile! You can use them for Chirstmas, Valentine's Day . . . even the 4th of July! Now, that's a find! Your table is utterly charming! Happy Valentine's Day!

  8. I'm sad to read about the loss of your friend. It's not easy. Your beautiful table is a lovely tribute and perfect to celebrate Valentine's Day. Your wedding topper is adorable, and so is the story behind its personalization for your wedding. Happy Valentine's Day!

  9. This is such a warm and wonderful tribute to Judy! I agree with you that Valentine's Day is one for loving everyone, not just romantic love. I don't think you could have picked a more fitting time to salute your friend and show how much all your shopping trips together meant to you.

    For your husband to have taken the time to paint the blond hair brown shows just how much in love with you he was! Men don't do that kind of stuff unless they are head over heels. He did a good job of it, too! He AND the topper are keepers!!!

    You've reminded me to never take my friends for granted and to love on them every time I see them. I kind of do that already, but they'll get a little extra now! :-)

  10. It is a beautiful tribute to a beautiful friendship. I'm so sorry for your loss, but I'm glad that you are focusing on all of the great times you had together. I know you will miss her, but I know that each time you use something that you purchased when the 2 of you were together, you'll remember her fondly and hopefully even smile at the memory.
    I love your mixture of plates. All of the wonderful red and white patterns coordinate beautifully. Your new tablecloth is beautiful, and how cute those wine stems are. Our $ Tree closed, or I'd be running out there now to see if they had any left. Your cake topper is adorable, and even more special is the story that goes along with it. Thank you so much for linking this post to my party.

  11. Hi Cuz: I know Judy would love this tribute to her. You were very fortunate to have such a friendship for 40 years. Judy was also fortunate to have a friend such as you. You two complimented each other. Just when I think you have outdone yourself, you come up with another outstanding tablescape. This one has a special message. Love the cake topper story. I can see your hubby with such concentration to make this topper look like you two. Happy Valentine's Day to us all. K

  12. Very sorry to hear about the loss of your friend. We do have our memories, that make us smile. you have created a beautiful table. The cake topper is precious.

  13. I am so sorry for the loss of your best friend, Rosie, please accept my condolences.
    The table you set in her memory is beautiful...I am sure she is smiling down on you. The red and white plates are really show-stoppers. Gorgeous centerpiece.
    Have a great week.

  14. Oh I love this table and especially since it holds some great sentiment with your friend. So sorry for your loss but isn't it wonderful that you have the good memories! I like how cheerful this table is- those polka dot plates are my favorite element! Those ruffled red placemats set the dishes up so nicely! Have a nice Valentine's Day

  15. I am so sorry for your loss. You have found a lovely way to honor your friend's memory as you use the things you both love! This is a beautiful table, and I love the story of your wedding cake topper. That's a special guy for sure! Blessings.

  16. So sorry for your loss. What a wonderful tribute this table is. Love, love, love the plate stack. I really like the placemats as well. Beautiful centerpiece and tablescaping. Valerie (

  17. How beautiful...your words and table setting. I'm so sorry you lost your friend. Life is so stinking hard sometimes! Your tribute to your friend is completely lovely. I pray you enjoy your dedicated table and the many special memories attached.

  18. How fortunate to have such a valuable friend in your life and to celebrate her time with you! The red and white theme of stacked plates is beautiful. The wedding bride and groom is so special with your personal story!

  19. Love this bright, cheerful table...perfect for the season!

  20. What a beautiful story. It is so personal and special. It is such a darling wedding topper. Thank you for sharing it with us. I love the plates with the various patterns. The mix and match of patterns adds so much more to a tablescape.

  21. What a wonderful friendship, and a lovely and uplifting table in honor of your dear friend. Darling topper, very sweet are those kinds of memories.

  22. what a vibrant beautiful table quite an honor in Judy's name may her memory live forever in your heart.Susie

  23. I am so very sorry for the loss of your dear friend...I lost my dear, dear best friend over a year ago..been friends since Jr. High and our kids grew up together and we shared our life journey with each other....Judy will always be in your your treasured memories...that angel on your shoulder.