Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Feeding People

Waiting for the Ferryman
by Daniel Ridgeway Knight

I have been taking pictures for a few days to show some ways to serve meals to those who, for various reasons, cannot attend a meal with the family at the table. While everyone else got the same meals, the one on the tray always looked more appealing.

These fourth-yard pieces of fabric I have collected can be used to make the same old gray tray look a little more colorful. These fabrics are made by a  U.S. company called Fabric Traditions,  for Wal-Mart and other stores. 

Lay a piece of it in the tray first, folding the edges under, to make it fit. 

Then, to protect the fabric, cover it in a piece of shiny clear plastic. You can hardly tell  it is covered when you use this high quality type of plastic, which you can buy in small quantities from  rolls at fabric stores.

Some of these trays are meals, and others snacks. I think it is important to keep them colorful, by varying the  kinds of foods.

You can probably tell this is an afternoon tea with scones and cream.

I try to find different tea cups to use.

It is all comfort food,  prepared in different ways: potatoes, eggs, salads, vegetables, rice, sandwiches, fruit and herbal teas.

If you have no fabric, cut a piece of gift-wrap to fit the tray, or use a gift bag, all under the plastic.

These little round paper doilies are perfect for absorbing any drips in the saucer of the tea cup set. They sometimes can be found at dollar stores, or they can be hand made, just by cutting circles of paper and folding them to make cuts as in paper snowflakes.

Have a look at this cute crocheted rag pad that someone made. I use it under the little stainless steel hot water pot on the tray.

A toile print, for something different.
The roses were a dollar each at Dollar Tree this week, so I could not resist having one, since our own roses are not in bloom yet.
 I think trays like this might be enjoyable by everyone at the table together, once in awhile.

This piece of fabric has a metallic thread in it, which the photo does not show, but it looks so bright with this snack:

It helps a lot, I think, to be situated in front of a great scene, and I like the way this tree, which is viewable from the front window,  makes a lacy shadow on the grass


Rightthinker said...

Oh how beautiful! The person on the receiving end I am sure is very blessed by the beauty, and the comforting delicious food!

God bless!

Anonymous said...

Oh Lydia,

this is so beautiful. A person can get well very fast with pretty dining trays like this.

It is a real lift to the spirit to have such pretty things brought to you when you are off your feet.
I noticed what looked like a card with one of the trays. That is a beautiful thing to do for someone.

Bless you for your kindness and thoughtfulness.

Mrs. J.

Mahek said...

I love this idea and it looks so pretty , not only to serve to others but also for your own self...
This fabric is so so good.. I love it .. never seen something like this in India. Its like the CATH KIDSTON AND GREEN GATE LOOK right.??..

Lydia said...

It probably is like Cath Kidston, or April Cornell, whose fabrics come from India and are sold at JoAnn Fabrics. I would like to see the fabrics in India, as I've seen the vibrant colors in various places online.

Barbara Neubeck said...

Hi LadyLydia,
I love your ideas. Pretty trays and appetising meals will help anyone feel special.
God Bless
Barb from Australia

anglow said...

You should write another book entitled Feeding ! I need it and there must be lots more like me.

Anonymous said...

Lydia these trays are a real thing of beauty. I have some old cookery and household management books of my grandmothers ; they all contain a section on 'invalid cookery' and stress the importance of presenting the food on a pretty tray in a dainty manner.

As a child I loved the description of the tray which Katy laid for her invalid cousin in 'What Katy Did'.

Anonymous said...

This is wonderful !! I have never heard of this but, it makes so much sense !! Please continue to educat me in the ways of the Christian Homemaker.I appreciate your writing these posts and look forward to them. Thank you Lady Lydia.

Anonymous said...

Oh yes....this is what people need who are perhaps not feeling well, & need a little TLC. Sometimes I even prepare one for myself, with a nice napkin, my better dishes...all "just because". It's a small thing, but done with care, that can make all the difference in our lives.


Finding Joy said...

These trays would lift the spirits of anyone not feeling well or weary after a busy day. It is a lovely idea. Also perfect for mothers day - in Australia that is this Sunday.

Even if you are home alone, this is a nice idea for ourselves, why not eat with some prettiness :)

I have all men in my house so my ideas tend to be more masculine to suit their needs!


Gayle said...

Everything looked so pretty. I appreciate your taking the time to give examples,it really helps.What a blessing this would be to take to someone who isn't feeling well or who just needs a kindness in their day.

Farrah said...

Très èlegant!

Farrah said...

Très èlegant!

Anonymous said...

I think the trays look so lovely! I also think that it is inspirational for serving meals at the table to our families. Attractive place settings, and artfully arranged and colorful food look so much more appetizing.Who needs to eat at a restaurant when it can be so good at home?

Anonymous said...

This is a fabulous idea. I have one son that works odd hours from home and must be served breakfast seperately in his work space. I serve him herbal tea, apple sauce, fresh fruits, and steamed fingerling potatoes for breakfast, since he is a light morning eater. I love this idea, which also makes it easier to carry all the dishes. I've not wanted to get a tray, because they take up room. But using a baking sheet that is already in the kitchen and covering it with fabric and plastic is a grand idea.

Anonymous said...

Lydia, and Anon 9:28,

Beautiful ideas, all of them!! I likewise have some old English cookery books from the late 50's, early 60's (Braille, absolutely priceless and now completely unavailable - a gift from a late dear friend - also gave me a Braille housekeeping manual from the late 1940's published by the Kentucky School for the Blind - fantastic, one of these days I should back-transcribe its kitchen management and homekeeping directions - very thorough - for readers of Home Living to enjoy - useful not only for those with little or no sight, but for everyone) and all have as has been described, a section devoted to Invalid Cookery covering the elements raised here. likewise, an old Vision Australia cookery tape series went into detail on this topic. These would be lovely not only for those who are laid up with injury or illness, but for the weary shiftworker who cannot take meals with the family and often needs to eat at odd hours.