On Sunday the Women of the Old West End had their big fundraiser, a holiday tour of neighborhood homes. I am still not entirely certain how we decided to participate but we included our home on the tour. Besides trying to replace plumbing, get heat to the house and patching plaster we had to decorate our home for Christmas in preparation of 1000 people or more to visit. It was a little overwhelming to say the least. Oldest daughter’s Christmas date dance was the evening before and the preview tour for all the house captains and other home owners. I agreed to have 20 juniors here for pictures and dinner. I am certainly out of my mind. When a local television station wanted to broadcast live from our home the morning of the tour, it nearly pushed me over the edge.
When it was all said and done, the house looked great (I think) the high school kids had a great time and a lot of people came to the tours because this house was included. I had to have all my decorating completed before Thanksgiving. I usually don’t start until the Monday after Thanksgiving! I didn’t want to post any pictures before the tour so I will do my version of the 12 days of Christmas and put up a different room each day.
First day, the dining room. It was the first one I decorated. I was asked to have the table set for a holiday meal as part of the decorations, Since my china is ivory and gold this seemed like the right room to put my Lenox snowflake ornaments on the tree. I also wanted to put our rather extensive Nativity set on display and the buffet offered the perfect place. Mary and Joseph are traveling along the plate rail a little closer each day to Bethlehem.
Background info on the dining room:
The dining room is twenty five feet long and features carved wormy chestnut woodwork, an elaborate built-in two tier sideboard with Rondel leaded glass windows. The original hand carved Della-Robia chandelier hangs over the table. There is a cathedral style leaded glass door that leads to the sunroom and a pass through window to the butlers pantry. The pass-through was added by the Oblates of Mary Immaculate when the house was their residence. There was once a large dinner bell that hung over the pass-through to call the priests to meals. They also had a large dining room table made from the same chestnut as the rest of the room. It had legs that matched the columns on the side-board and the edge of the table was carved to match the chandelier. It had remained in the room until the owners we bought the house from removed it. We attempted to get it back but to no avail. So sad that someone who claimed to love this house would remove such a big part of its history.