February 16, 2015

It's Mardi Gras in NOLA!*
And almost everywhere else, it's just Tuesday.

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I live where it's just Tuesday.

And most Tuesdays come with responsibilities.

Tuesday Responsibilities extend to every member of my family, except for my baby grandson (who, come to think of it, has to keep on his own schedule too).

Mardi Gras may be a state holiday in Louisiana, but there's simply no way to carve out time for the big bash at my house.

Still, once you've taken children to New Orleans during Mardi Gras, it's hard to let it go.

* Pancake Day
In the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, and Canada, the last day before the Lenten Season is known as "Pancake Day", as it is a common custom to eat pancakes on that day. Traditionally, eating pancakes helped to use up rich foods that were to be avoided for the next 40 days (fat, butter, sugar, and eggs).

PLUS ---------->
I need to
start using
all of these
souvenir beads!

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Early morning seems to be the only time I can gather my family together for a little celebration.
Welcome to our Mardi Gras breakfast.
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I never understood the reasoning back of putting something at a place setting that has no real purpose.
Consequently, I never do it.
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And here I am doing it!

I spotted the crowns (Plaster of Paris, I think.) at a yard sale and immediately thought of Mardi Gras. After purchasing all they had (3 pink ones and one black one), they got a coat of gold spray paint. I tried setting them among the beads and feathers, but they got lost.

Mardi Gras Napkin Tutorial:
Wrap beads loosely around an old dish towel and spot glue with a hot glue gun. Remove the do-dads from one of your fancier necklaces and glue to the wrapped beads. If necessary, spot glue in a few more places where the beads touch each other. Slip the bead ring off the dish towel and onto a napkin.
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I first used these place card holders at a Charles Dickens Christmas luncheon.
The name cards are meant to be placed above the horizontal wires, between the curlicues at the end.
One drop of hot glue transforms them into hanging NOLA street signs.

 photo c69e674b-966c-4248-9195-37fcd1c65f25.jpg The morning revelers were served King Cake Pancakes. I used a recipe found on Tablespoon.com, which is basically a Bisquick pancake with nutmeg and cinnamon.

Everyone found a small plastic baby in the middle of their stacks. Orange juice filled the wine glasses.

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The Kitchen Assembly Line

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A cardboard and PVC pipe lantern acts as the main centerpiece. Forgoing the commonly used Bourbon Street sign, I attached a St. Charles sign to the post.
(1) When we went to New Orleans we were looking for
The Family Celebration Side of Mardi Gras.
So, we naturally avoided Bourbon Street.
2) While there, we stayed with wonderful friends who live on St. Charles.

If you're skeptical about taking children to Mardi Gras, check out this article on the Mardi Gras New Orleans site.


Dinner plates: Tabletops Unlimited, Misto-Gold, Bed, Bath and Beyond
Green salad plates: Homer Laughlin Fiestaware, Shamrock, Amazon.com
Purple bread and butter plates: Homer Laughlin, Fiestaware, Plum, Amazon.com
Stemware: Rambler Rose, Tiffin Glass Co, inherited
Flatware: Hampton Forge, Kingsley Gold, Macy's
Crowns: Yard sale - Price tags on the bottom of all four indicate Hobby Lobby ($19.99 - yikes!)
Lamp Post Place Card Holders: local shop in Glendale, CA, but they can easily be found by doing an internet search
Green napkins: fabric from Jo-Ann's Fabrics
Purple placemats: Bed, Bath and Beyond
Beads, boas, coconuts, and coins: Mardi Gras, 2013

Lamp Post Centerpiece - Some Steps

 photo Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 6.40.10 PM.png A Google search (criteria: lamp post instructions scholastic) should produce the link shown at the left.
Click the link and you will be taken to a pdf file.

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I printed the pdf patterns at 75% and glued them to cardboard.
I only used cardboard shapes #2, #3, #4, #5, and #6.

Hot glue, black duct tape, and a 1-inch diameter piece of PVC pipe went together to create the lantern and pole.
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A 5-way fitting is used as the base. The entire lamp post is sprayed black.
The base will be weighted down with holiday beads when the lamp post is placed on the table.
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The panes of the lantern were made from a yellow pocket folder
purchased at Staples. It's attached with double sided tape.
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This post is partying with Centerpiece Wednesday at The Style Sisters, Jenny Matlock's Alphabet Thursday, and Between Naps on the Porch.
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