Monday, April 21, 2014

The Kids' Table

I have heard horror stories about "the kids' table".....that rickety, wobble-legged "card table" set up in a dark, drafty corner of the kitchen, clunky upended plastic milk crates for seating, paper plated lunch meat sandwiches with a skimpy side of nasty vegetables, scowling and squirming cousins crammed across who sullenly eye their own cold potatoes and warm milk - all topped off with a super-duper-sour-puss of a frowning grandma whisking past to hiss, "Don't you kids dare spill any of that gravy on my nice clean floor! Or else! No dessert for you! And the Easter bunny won't come either!" Then away she goes, around the corner, just beyond the whoosh of double dining doors to immerse herself in candle lit warmth, intimate laughter, the gentle clink of company china, a twinkling sparkle of alcohol in crystal stemware, steaming platters of well seasoned delicacies, more premium alcohol and the preferred company of......adults!


No way! Not over here! Not at this grandkid-crazy grandma's house!

I've actually waited "years" for the chance to hostess a kids' table. Special little guests of honor do have to be old enough to sit unassisted and hold their own forks, of course! But most of all, an awakening spirit of independence must be present. Sitting on mommy's lap is no longer the preferred way to dine in style!

And "big kids" don't drink out of baby bottles anymore either!
They use straws!

I placed three "big kids" at a round table mere steps from the formal one that seated eight adults plus three youngest children. Soft springlike yellow linens on the big table indicated that this color be continued on the smaller one, but "store-bought" would just not do! The 72" round covering is a nine patch quilt I embarked upon during the first week of March. I frantically reached for my deadline, hand stitching up a frenzy while envying grandma blogger friends (Hello, Debra and Judy!) who spent those last cold winter weeks enjoying their own projects at a leisurely pace!

And what's a grandma to do about food? Asparagus soup? Arugula salad? Beef tenderloin with Pinot Noir sauce? My adult guests raved, but the kids aren't buying that kind of stuff. The solution was to offer a variety of finger foods, allowing them to graze and own some choice. They love to bop around while they eat, visiting parents and tempting cats with grape tomatoes!

Perfect menu!
Ham and cheese mini croissants
Veggie cups: baby carrots, cuke slices, grape tomatoes
Organic whole milk with Peep-on-a-paper-straw
Whole wheat mini muffins
Deviled eggs
Herb cheese in mini phyllo cups
Grapes, pear spears, watermelon chunks


simply the chirpiest mini cheese balls I have ever seen! These little pipsqueaks are original with super-talented Beth at Hungry Happenings. I searched far and wide for cute Easter food but found mostly sweet items. This recipe is delightful - easy to make and store in advance, great as an appetizer and healthy for kids to snack on. Beth also shows a mini monster version of this recipe - I'll be making those for Halloween! Perfect site, grandmas, for all of us who like to "wow" our kids with clever little treats that aren't commonly seen anywhere else!

I had a lot to be thankful for on Easter Sunday. The most heartwarming moment allowed me to reflect on the significant holiness of this day. Our kids' table guests are students at Lutheran pre-schools. They have been taught well. Grandpa was allowed a break from leading prayer when Nick, Sae and Brielle offered to say it for him. "God is great, God is good...." What a beautiful ecumenical moment. Our family had participated as members in Holy Week services at both Catholic and Greek Orthodox churches, and now the little ones among us led a classic Protestant prayer for children. God is, indeed, good!

"Reverend" Nick: "Let us thank Him for our food."

And there's more!

The kids filled the Easter baskets they made and handed them out. Everybody, including Bree's mommy, Christy, loved them!

Baby Kaylee celebrated her first Easter by finding her first egg. We were very impressed with her color coordination skill!

And finally, Sae is very "hoppy" that you stopped by today. He is glad to see you! And so I am!


  1. You are so extraordinary, Joyce, that I catch myself shaking my head and chuckling during your posts, and wishing that I was a kid and YOU were my grandma! :)
    Seriously, lady, you outdo yourself every time and that is not possible in ordinary land :) So you inhabit a different planet :)

    I have been waiting with bated breath for this lovely post and tablecloth...pieced and hand stitched with love and talent...that alone was worth of a post in are amazing in every way XO

  2. I remember some of the best times ever was with all the cousins (13) at the kids table.

  3. What a fantastic job you did! Debra is right, you continue to out do yourself - I would hate to be the other Grandmother and have to compete with you! Your quilt did turn out beautiful and I only drooled a little when you mentioned asparagus soup! So glad all of you were able to be together and have such a wonderful day. Now fall down and have another glass of wine. You've earned it!

  4. my goodness J! you are something else! i totally remember those old card tables cuz those are the kind that i always sat on far away from the adult table! but your kid table? my goodness i want to sit there as an adult! and you sewed that beautiful quilt tablecloth too?! you are SO multitalented! :>D!

  5. OMGoodness- You outdid yourself. What a wonderful, wonderful Easter fete for everyone! I love it. Your kids/grandkids are just darling...especially cute the little lady in purple! Love this post!!! xo Diana

  6. Wow, Joyce! I want to be at your Kids' Table!

  7. You are such a fun grandma! I always enjoy your ideas and creations you have for the children.


  8. Where to start - a children's table so over the top it would be fit for the White House, food that looks not only delicious but wonderful, children remembering what the holiday is really about, and grandkids so cute I can't keep from smiling. Grandma Joyce - you are something else. If there was a Team Grandma - you'd be our creative leader. :-)

  9. This is so lovely, Joyce! The table is delightful and I bet your grandkids had a ball! I agree with Heidi, I want to be at your kids table too! It is such a good idea and you are so creative with it. The food looks yummy. Baby Kaylee, well what can I say, she is soooo cute! They really are so lucky having such an amazing grandma like you. PS I love the tablecloth too, you have so many talents. :)

  10. The beginning of your post sounded like a script from American Horror Story! How sad! You made an absolutely magical table for the little ones. You could convince a child to try just about any food, if it was presented so beautifully and thoughtfully.

  11. You are such a careing Grandma for your grandchildren and the table must have looked like fairyland to them being so beautifully set and on a beautiful quilt tablecloth. A lovely post J.

  12. Your description of the kids table is exactly what I remember from childhood. I'm so happy to see you took so much are to make the Easter table special for your grandkids. Everything, including the quilt looks amazing. I love that you included some Baby Chick Cheeseballs on your menu. Thanks for the shout out to Hungry Happenings. I'm happy you had fun making the chicks and hope the kids enjoyed them.

    Beth @ Hungry Happenings

  13. Oh, you have me dreaming of what I'll do when my grandkids are old enough for a children's table! Of course, I really don't have to wait--I would love to dine at such a table, myself! :-) Those little cheese balls turned out really cute, and I love the cheery quilt tablecloth you made!

  14. Joyce!! That is soooo beautiful! Oh how I wish I had the time and could go back and redo Easter here! Well well Well! Loved it so much I pinned it twice.....once for kids ideas and once for adults, and that quilt is just perfect for your Easter table too. I have been wanting to have a tea party for the girls of the family and you have inspired me, of course, duh! Thank you for letting us in to see your creativity! Love seeing the pics of the kids too. It's fun to see how they have grown :)

  15. What wonderful photos to remember these happy times. Your 'kid' food looks incredible! You make every day fun and special! Have a fabulous week my friend! Hugs, Diane

  16. You are the best grandma ever to think of this adorable kids table idea!! Love it.

  17. What an awesome kids' table! i can't believe some people had to eat bad food at the kids' table. My Nona didn't have any crafts and decorations at our kids' table when I was little, but she wouldn't have dreamed of serving us anything but what the rest of them were having... and it was always delicious! ;)

  18. This nana is awed and amazed by your talent! Would love for you to guest blog on Would you consider it? Thanks for this lovely post. Going to find a way to follow you before I leave. Blessings to you....Teresa

  19. What an awesome grandma! I loved the special food menu just for the kids. Your adult table looked gorgeous too! Thanks for sharing on the Four Seaons Blog Hop - as always a joy

  20. What fun! Your tables are so lovely and inviting!

  21. Joyce, "what happens at Grandma's" is always wonderful. Your Easter Kids' Table is incredibly creative and fun....what a wonderful way to show the kids how special they are! ♥

    Thank you for sharing this with us at Treasure Box Tuesday!

  22. What a special table for the "big" kids, it looks amazing!

  23. I don't remember my kids' table being this cool! Very cute!
    Thanks for sharing,

  24. What a lovely Easter celebration. As an adult granddaughter who looks back fondly and with so much love for the special things my grandmother did for us, I want to say THANK YOU! Your grandchildren are going to have such wonderful memories. This Easter spread looks fantastic!

  25. Please never let me sit at the adults table if I come to your house!

  26. This is the cutest kid's table I've ever seen! Thanks for linking up on Kid's in the Kitchen!

  27. OMG, I love your kids table and of course I'm partial to the adorable chicks. Thank you for sharing with the Clever Chicks Blog Hop! I hope you’ll join us again next week!

    Kathy Shea Mormino
    The Chicken Chick

  28. Thanks for linking with us at Marvelous Monday - what a fun idea! I bet you are a fun grandma! Pinned!

  29. Oh, this is a fabulous post!!! My girls are grown and I think they'd have preferred the kids table! What beautiful children. I love that kitty got on the table before the food went down. A scene straight from my house!
    I did a search on your blog for "Infant of Prague" to see if you've ever shared yours and came up empty. It sounds amazing!!!
    Have a beautiful week,

  30. This is absolutely adorable! The kids must have loved this. I've done a few tables like this one for my kids and I cherish our little parties and I know they do too. Have a wonderful day.

  31. I hear ya! The kids table has to be fun, fun, fun! This year we will be celebrating outside with a hotdog roast in the firepit. Kids and adults will have fun! Your table is darling and the kids are just precious! Love the peeps on the straws. I will be doing that now. Thanks for the fun idea. The chick cheese balls are too cute. Gotta make some! Thanks for sharing with SYC. Happy Easter.

  32. LOve your children's table food ideas! My family still all fit at our dining room table but I do amke special items that I know the the grandchildren will enjoy. Your cheesey chicks are adorable and I'm going to try to copy them..thnaks!