Author Topic: One dinner, two tables.  (Read 1512 times)

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Coley

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #15 on: November 24, 2014, 07:33:43 PM »
Thanks for all the tips and ideas. It is an awkward-sized group to split. I think we will try to squeeze everyone in at the same table. I've been staring at the dining room for a while, and I think I can put the high chair in a corner of the room so it's near the table without actually being at the table. Then I'll have DIL sit next to the baby. SS1 will sit next to her. We'll have one chair at each end of the table, three on one side, two on the other, and baby in a corner pointed toward the table. It'll be tight, but I think we can manage.

The baby just turned 1 last month, so she's still pretty little. We're eating late in the afternoon, so well past her nap time. She'll probably be wide awake for dinner. DS is 13, and he's taller than I am, so no little chairs for him anymore!

I think it's a good idea to serve dessert elsewhere. Maybe we'll take pie requests before everyone leaves the table, cut the slices, and serve their dessert plates wherever they get comfortable.

The benches are a really good idea. I'd never thought of that. I don't know if we have time to get benches now, but I'm going to look into that for the future because those would really solve our seating problem. We might be able to get a tight 10 around that table if we had benches. We do have a piano bench!

Thanks again, everyone!

kherbert05

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #16 on: November 24, 2014, 09:14:39 PM »
When we have a big group at holiday meals, we set up place settings in both the dining room and the kitchen. If needed, I also set up a card table or two in the living room.

Then we let guests decide where they want to sit.

Some people prefer the informality of the kitchen or living room. And it sometimes sounds like they're having the most fun!

I put the silverware, glasses and napkins on the tables. Dinner plates are on the buffet (our kitchen island). When serving a divided group, I like to have the food in a central place - either a buffet, kitchen counter or kitchen island. Passing dishes around the table is awkward when there are multiple tables.

This is what my family does - except the left handed corners are reserved for the lefties. We have enough southpaws that it is a bit of a squeeze.
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Arila

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #17 on: November 25, 2014, 03:26:08 AM »
I'm also for finding a way to get everyone in the same room.

If you can add a card table or something on the end of your table, you said that impedes traffic flow to the back side of the table. Seat your husband and DS in the most restricted spots (save a mobile spot for you) and you get up and get them seconds. Maybe the longer table lets you actually serve off of serving plates on the table, and then the dishes can be passed? Another consideration. (my family always passes dishes at the table, so I guess its easy for me to suggest this) then mobility from some seats is not an issue.

cicero

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #18 on: November 25, 2014, 05:11:14 AM »
could you use your living room in some way? have it more buffet style and sit on couches and chairs scattered around (using coffee table/card tables)? we did that a few times when we didn't have enough room around the dining room table.

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Margo

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #19 on: November 25, 2014, 05:17:18 AM »
I'd agree with those saying squeeze everyone round the table if you can, and you can't, split the group 3/4 rather than 2/5, and moe people for dessert so everyone gets to socialise with everyone else.

Hmmmmm

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #20 on: November 25, 2014, 05:47:18 AM »
I think your plan is a good one. And don't worry if someone gets trapped in a corner because of extra chairs. People are ok with small annoyances in cases like this.

peaches

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #21 on: November 25, 2014, 06:01:53 AM »
Sounds like you've got a good plan!

I like the idea of not serving dessert at the table. For Thanksgiving and other holiday meals, I like to put out dessert and let people serve themselves when they're ready. Not everyone wants to eat dessert immediately after a big, rich meal. (On the other hand, some people do!)

Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.  :)

Thipu1

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #22 on: November 25, 2014, 11:37:49 AM »
When she was serving 22 people with a dining room that seated eight, we all had to eat at the same table.  This involved people in the dining room sitting side-saddle and being unable to leave the table during the meal.  It also entailed snaking a picnic table with benches and several card tables with folding chairs through the living room and out to the enclosed porch but, even if we couldn't see all the other diners, we were having Thanksgiving dinner at the same table. 

If no one minds being a bit constricted this arrangement can be fun but it won't be an elegant Thanksgiving.  As with so many things, it all depends. 

Outdoor Girl

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #23 on: November 25, 2014, 11:59:30 AM »
I like your plan with three people down one side and the couple with the baby down the other side.  Either remove all the food to the kitchen table once everyone is served or leave all the food on the kitchen table to begin with and fill plates from there.

Cozy is fine when you're all family.

With the pie, cut the requested pieces and leave them on the kitchen or dining room table, whichever is closer to the action, for people to grab for themselves, if you don't feel like wandering around, serving everyone.  Or enlist DS's help to do the serving for you, if he's willing.
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lowspark

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #24 on: November 25, 2014, 01:10:01 PM »
Good plan. You might be surprised but it's not all that bad to squeeze in two extra at the table. I've squeezed 9 into a table that seats 6 and we were ok.

ITA that you should absolutely not put 2 in the kitchen, regardless of which two. It will be awkward all the way around. And serving dessert away from the table after the meal is the way to go. That's usually how we do it anyway because it gives everyone a chance to let their food settle a little bit, move to a more comfortable spot on the couch maybe, and then think about dessert.

jpcher

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #25 on: November 25, 2014, 02:44:23 PM »
Chiming in late, but I'm glad that you decided to put everybody at the same table, even though it's a tight squeeze. I think this is the best choice. ;D

Jloreli

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Re: One dinner, two tables.
« Reply #26 on: Today at 10:03:45 AM »
I find if I can put most of the serving dishes on a smaller table that can be easily reached once everyone is served relieves the claustrophobic feeling a bit when X+? people are seated around a table meant for X. It might mean that someone will have to stand to grab things for seconds but it makes it a little more comfortable.