Have you ever watched honey drip from a spoon? How it starts out slow and steady. And, at first, you think that it is just one solid color but as it catches the light you suddenly notice all of the different tones, the different layers.
Have you noticed how it lands in a little honey puddle? How you have to have patience as you blend it in. It won’t be rushed. But then, well then, it’s subtle sweetness just works its way right through.
Proverbs 16:24 says, “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”
And while, of course, there are no more gracious words than the ones in the GOOD book, the words in “Dear Carolina” , by the incredibly talented author Kristy Woodson Harvey, drip with as much sweetness, as much graciousness, as that honey dripping from a spoon.
I would love to tell you about this story.
About how I could.not.put.it.down.
I would love to tell you about the main characters. How Khaki and Jodi’s lives intertwine. How I wanted to be their friend.
How they have experienced all that is bitter and all that is sweet in life and often, very often, at the same time.
I’d love to tell you how, as I read, I felt like I was sitting on a swing on a wide front porch with fields in the distance and a glass of sweet tea next to me.
I’d love to tell you about how after reading this book, I was thrilled to partner with Mikasa and create a tablescape inspired by the story.
And I imagined how I would set the table if I knew both Khaki and Jodi were coming over for lunch. How I would want it to be just the right balance of fancy and casual. How I’d want both of them to feel comfortable and welcomed sitting at my table.
How there would be fresh flowers from my garden and simple coastal touches as an homage to Carolina.
And how I would want them to feel encouraged, lifted up, refreshed.
I would mix the Mikasa Loria with my own blue and white dishes just to add a little bit of southern charm.
And the Loria dishes would be the perfect choice because they are fancy enough for a special occasion yet relaxed enough for everyday.
The same would be said for the Mikasa Britt Flatware. Simple, chic lines.
I would serve Khaki a glass of wine in the Mikasa Laura Glassware but Jodi would have to settle for iced sweet tea since she isn’t technically ‘of age’…at least not in years. She’s definitely lived a lifetime though in her short 19 years on earth.
But, I would know that neither Jodi or Khaki would really care about any of it. They would be just as happy eating off a paper plate.
Because, they’ve experienced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows that life has to offer.
So, we would barely look down at our place settings because we would be too busy talking.
Talking about all that we have in common. Our love of getting our hands dirty in the soil. Or our appreciation for a well decorated room.
Mostly, I think we would talk about our mutual understanding of how amazingly, how miraculously and how unexpectedly families can be put together.
I’d love to tell you about all of these things. But, you’re going to need to find out for yourself.
Be sure to take your time, though. Read it slowly. Savor it.
And let the graciousness, the sweetness, work it’s way into your heart…like honey dripping from a spoon.
“A moving debut novel about two mothers—one biological and one adoptive—from a compelling new voice in Southern women’s fiction.
One baby girl.
Two strong Southern women.
And the most difficult decision they’ll ever make.
Frances “Khaki” Mason has it all: a thriving interior design career, a loving husband and son, homes in North Carolina and Manhattan—everything except the second child she has always wanted. Jodi, her husband’s nineteen-year-old cousin, is fresh out of rehab, pregnant, and alone. Although the two women couldn’t seem more different, they forge a lifelong connection as Khaki reaches out to Jodi, encouraging her to have her baby. But as Jodi struggles to be the mother she knows her daughter deserves, she will ask Khaki the ultimate favor…
Written to baby Carolina, by both her birth mother and her adoptive one, this is a story that proves that life circumstances shape us but don’t define us—and that families aren’t born, they’re made…”
Order your own copy of “Dear Carolina” here or here.
And now for a GIVEAWAY!!
One of YOU could win a beautiful set of 4 Mikasa Loria Dinnerware place settings! PLUS, the winner will be receiving their very own free copy of “Dear Carolina”.
This is a wonderful NEW program for Mikasa who are reminding us that while they use the highest quality bone china and led-free crystal, these sets are meant to be used for everyday meals not just special occasions.
Enter to win here:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
And be sure to check out all of these other bloggers (including the incredible author herself!!) who’ve put their own spin on a “Dear Carolina” tablescape.
And keep up on all of the latest from Mikasa on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter
What an enjoyable post – now I feel like I need to read the book. I forget to take time out and experience a little fiction now and then.
I love white dishes and I’d definitely like to be entered in the giveaway.
I would like to be entered to win the Mikasa dinnerware.. I love white dishes and these look lovely paired with your blue and white dishes. Thanks for the opportunity.
Carla S. says
I have been wanting a set of white dishes for so long ! Thanks for the great giveaway and the chance to win these. I love them!
Judi Stansky says
This table makes you want to sit and reconnect with people–simply lovely.
Very pretty, classic style dishes and place setting. Love that they can be dressed up or simply pretty enough for everyday use. Thank you for such a sweet, inspiring post!
Love all of your blogs. I want my table to look as inviting as yours. Thanks!
I love pretty dishes for supper with my family. Thanks so much!
Stephanie Phelps says
These dishes are so pretty I would love to be entered to win them please!
Can’t wait to read the book! I love setting a beautiful table, especially at Christmas. Have had my Mikasa Italian Countryside for years and use them daily!
What a great post! Now I need to go by this book! Thanks for the Mikasa giveaway. I love your tablescape. It’s simple but gorgeous. I would love to win!
Donna Marie says
I would love to win the book and the Mikasa giveaway!!! I would set my table and set back and read this delicious sounding book!!!
Alison S says
These dishes are beautiful and I would love to win, plus I love a good book!
Teresa R says
Would like to be entered in the giveaway. I’d like to set up my table for me and my husband to enjoy our meals at the table instead of in the love seat in front of the television
Beverly Ebersole says
I would love to be entered in the giveaway.
I have been wanting to order this book! It sounds lovely! I would love to be entered into this amazing giveaway! Thank you!
Loving My Life - Kim says
White Dishes!!!!! Need I say more??? Nothing makes a table setting more inviting and clean looking than white dishes! I would love to win the setting! Love! Love! Love!
Design Chic says
What a beautiful table and beautiful words about my book! I can’t thank you enough!! Adore that you added quotes from the book – why didn’t we think of that?? You’re the best!
Kristy Woodson Harvey says
Wow. What an AMAZING post. And what amazing words about Dear Carolina. And those quotes? Your table is just stunning. So lovely. Khaki and Jodi would absolutely love it, and I wish I could come over too! Thank you so much for the incredible compliments about my book and for creating a setting so lovely. It means the world to me! xo Kristy
Great Story and beautiful dishes! The two seem to mix perfectly!
Corina Molinar says
Those dishes are so pretty! i would love them , beautiful setting . 🙂
The China and the book both sound perfect for this Southern girl!
JEAN FROM GEORGIA says
My daughter in law and I both share the same pattern of English Countryside. When she married my son he liked my dishes and requested that she select the same pattern. Mine are well used and I sure would love new settings of Mikasa, as mine present plates are showing lots of wear.
Amy Kaminski says
Looking forward to reading that book. The tablewear is perfect for every day and special occasion. Would love to see it on my table!
Shirley@Housepitality Designs says
Dear Carolina is certainly a most beautiful book…I laughed and cried and enjoyed the many colloquialisms of the South…Gorgeous, gorgeous table Vanessa, befitting of the gorgeous cover of the book and the beautiful writer, Kristy….I love the mix of the fabulous blue and white that you adorned the table with…and those framed quotes/words of wisdom are the perfect compliment to your amazing table…love that dinnerware!
I am hosting my Garden club in August and am planning a garden party and would love to win this giveaway to use on my table setting.
Deb Young says
Sounds like a good summer read! If I were to win I would give the tableware to my daughter for her first home.
The Mikasa Loria is beautiful and so versatile! It looks great combined with your blue and white pieces.
Thank you for such a nice giveaway. Please enter me.
Loving the way you all are introducing this book and the dishes today. The quotes on your table are beautiful.
Toby Morris says
What a beautiful table setting with the white Mikasa tableware. I like the way you combined your blue and white dishes with the white plates. So crisp and fresh!
Jane B says
Your place setting is lovely and the blue and white looks pretty with the white dishes.
I bought my first set of white dishes back in 1991 – yep, that long ago! My friends couldn’t understand why 😉 At the time, I was addicted to pretty place mats and just new that, with white dishes, I could change up those place mats every day if I wanted to! So I did!
I still have those dishes, and am thinking it’s time for some new, pretty white dishes.
The story is timeless, love offers a lifetime of hope. An invitation to dine at such a table, like the colors without it being too much.
Kim R says
Please enter me in the giveaway. The book sounds like something I would really enjoy!
Katy | Her Cup of Joy says
I would love to get my hands on that book, it seems like such an incredible story. Those plates are also so wonderful!
Sherry W says
I never take the time to read but after your review this is a book I will certainly take the time. Thank you for all your wonderful posts (and fabulous giveaways like this one).
Carmen P says
I would love to be entered! I always like a good book recommendation. I’ve added this to my Goodreads list.
Karie Gallegos says
Thank you for sharing! I would love to be entered into the wonderful drawing!
Have an enjoyable day!
Anne G. says
Lovely tablescape. Love the simplicity of the flatware. It will look stunning with everyday and fancy dishes.
Christina Z says
I would love to be entered to win this fabulous giveaway! Thank you for the chance!
Rusty H says
I would love to be entered in the giveaway
Delilah Gillio says
Love your blog & I love this post! I can’t wait to read the book and would love the opportunity to win some new dishes!!! Thank you!
Carla Shiver says
These dishes are beautiful. I love them.
I have already read the book and loved it! Beautiful characters, and heartfelt!
Karen J says
Would love to win the pretty dishes but especially the book! Great give away and beautiful table.
I check into your blog everyday and your words often touch my heart. Today you have inspired me to read Dear Carolina and will have it on my kindle by the end of the day. I’ve been wanting to update my table from an old Mikasa pattern to white dishes. This would be perfect!
Aunt B says
Inspired . . planning a reunion with dear friends in October . . it’s been 20 plus years! Thank you for sharing! Dear Carolina has been added to my “gift” list for sweet birth mother’s in my life.
S Summers says
Sounds like a book I would enjoy. Thanks for sharing
Your beautifully appointed tablescape is perfect if they were – or any of us – were to be coming for a luncheon!
It is the perfect mix – and I LOVE the idea of the quotes in the frames! Blue and white is so classic that it defies time and borders!
Your analogy to slowly dripping honey and slowly savoring this book is recommendation enough to know I absolutely must get it to do just that: slowly savor.
And quoting The Good Book was the dealer sealer to me. Thank you – and Mikasa – for this generous opportunity to win their beautiful set of dishes (that I so need!)
You know that I don’t own any white dishes?!!!!! I have a cheap chipped yellowy cream that need to be replaced, but no white – and everyone – the Southern Belles and Yanks alike need white dishes!!!!!!! : – )
Just my kind of book. Can’t wait to read it. Your table is lovely.
I’d love to be entered in the giveaway! Love the dishes and the book looks great!
Geneva White says
Love your decor and your love of God! I have a few pieces of Mikasa and would adore having more, so entered the give away. Thanks for sharing your ideas and the dishes!.
Michele @ Our Rosey Life says
I love Mikasa. I have French Countryside that I bought 20 years ago and it still looks beautiful! Over the years, I’ve added other patterns and they all work so nicely together. Thanks for the giveaway. I love what you share with us!
I love your post….I need to get this book…and I love the way you described the table step by step as if I was eating with these women from the book…just lovely.
Great tablescape. You definitely have put me in the mood to do a garden tablescape. I would love to win the Mikasa giveaway and include in my tablescape.
Your table is lovely and of course I’d love to win a set of those beautiful Mikasa dishes and the book sounds like a fabulous beach read!! Thanks for hosting the giveaway ladies!
Cheryl Blatchley says
I’m not sure which I’d love more, a copy of the book or the 4-piece dish set! You did such a nice job of introducing both! I would love to be entered into this giveaway drawing! Thank you! The Lord’s blessings on your gift of writing and hospitality!
Cheryl Blatchley says
I’m not sure which I’d love more, a copy of the book or the 4-piece dish set! You did such a nice job of introducing both! I would love to be entered into this giveaway drawing! Thank you! The Lord’s blessings on your gift of writing and your hospitality!
Karen U says
Please count me in! These dishes are just lovely!
Pam Ballard says
Please include me in the wonderful giveaway. How generous.
Your sweet post and heartfelt review make me want to read this book pretty badly! If you need me I’ll be at my library making sure they have a copy for me to borrow. I’ve been looking for an uplifting summer read, and this seems to fit the bill. Thanks for sharing this beautiful story (and oh my, it’s inspired table too!) with me!
Carla Jordan says
What beautiful dinnerware! I’d love to be entered into the drawing. THANKS!
Eileen F says
The table looks so pretty. I would love the opportunity to win and I will be ordering the book. Thanks for the recommendation.
Kelly Fleenor says
I love the table setting and am always on the search for a good read.
Deb Miller says
After your tantalizing glimpse into the story, I can’t wait to read Dear Carolina! And your tablescape is beautiful! Loria with your blue and white is perfect!
You painted a very intriguing picture of this book. It sounds like something you delve into and can’t put down until the wee hours of the morning. The tablescape definitely adds to the charm. Thanks for the chance to win.
I feel compelled to respond to your post today……..it is refreshingly sweet, just like the honey you referred to……and your notions toward love and friendship are nourishing for my soul today.
What a blessing!
I would love to enter this giveaway for this beautiful Mikasa Loria Dinnerware! This set is simple and classic…love the embossed bead pattern! Thanks for this chance 🙂
Please enter me! Thanks!
Cindy G says
Lovely table! I’ll have to check out this book. Sounds like a good read.
jONELL HARRISON says
These would be the finishing touch to my collection of over the top dishes..really
I would love to win that lovely Miksasa and the book; please enter me in the giveaway. Your table scape is gorgeous and thoughtful.
Helen Brandt says
Would love to be able to set such a beautiful table setting.
Judy C in NC says
The white Loria dishes would be stunning on my quilt-top table scape. Thank you so much for this wonderful opportunity. I am more in love with Dear Carolina with each review and sure am hoping it will come to live in my little southern cottage. Judy C in NC
How beautiful. I would love to be included.Thank you
Kelly D says
I would like to be entered. Thank you!
Anita Scroggins says
I would love to be entered in the giveaway of the beautiful Mikasa Loria Dinnerware. It is very lovely and would go great with so many things. Dining is more than just food you know.
Sharlene Piscitelli says
Love your tablescape! I would like to be entered in the Mikasa giveaway!
Anna Starner says
I love the basic white used with your beautiful blue and white dishes. I would love to be able to mix some of my pattered dishes with these pretty white Mikasa dishes. They would add a pretty touch to any table.
Mary Paine says
White dishes with hydrangeas on the table says summer to me. Love the blue touches.
You have certainly made me want to savor every page of this wonderful story. I adore how you used your own blue dishes for that extra pop of color. White dishes are easily adapted for any color scheme and any gathering. Your table is beautiful and I love the framed quotes all around.
I love your tablescape and I would love to win the beautiful white dishes. I would also enjoy reading the book.
Judy E says
I can’t wait to read this book! Thanks for pointing it out as I had not heard of it. Please enter me in your giveaway also, love the dishes.
Heather S says
I would LOVE to be entered in the giveaway! I really need new dishes 🙂
Thank you for the giveaway. I love mikasa and would love to win new dinnerware. Simple white is my favorite.
Deb McK says
I love these dishes! I could set a lovely table with snacks to nibble on while I am reading! Thanks for the opportunity!
What a pretty table–and a great giveaway!
Mary Stewart says
You can never have too many white dishes. Change out the napkins and the flowers and you have a completely different theme for those same white dishes!
wen budro says
I would love to be entered in your giveaway. That is a beautiful tablescape and set of dishes.
I love the touch of blue and the idea to mix match the dishes! I would do this with some antique dishes I have from my great grandmothers.
Anxious to read the book after reading your post…..sounds like a wonderful read. Beautiful table setting….white dinnerware is so very elegant. Thanks for the opportunity to win.
Everything is so beautiful! please enter me in the giveaway
Jane @ Cottage at the Crossroads says
I love a good book and I love pretty dishes! My Italian Countryside dishes by Mikasa need replacing and I love this pattern. Thanks for the opportunity to win a set!
Pat Meacham says
When our daughter Angie was young, I entertained her little friends with a beauty pageant wearing old prom dresses and bridesmaids dress of mine with saches for the state they represented, they would come down the open stairway to a formal table set for dinner with the serving cart setting along side. I used cloth napkins and my best china and silver and tableware set for a queen. Many had never laid eyes upon a table set this way. My husband passed away this past week and the girls came to see Angie with all the good times at our home, one of which was this one occasion. I would love to share the dishes with one of these girls that is so special to our family, goes to our church and now has 3 children of her own. She would be so grateful to receive such a beautiful gift. What a beautiful tribute to our family thru these trying next days. Thank you for entering my name in the drawing.
Margo, BC Canada says
Well after reading this post this am… while at the Farmer’s Market, I picked up a Clover Verbena Honey!
My hub, will make his Scones while I brew the Coffee, admiring all served on that fantastic Mikasa
Loria ~ Dinnerware giveaway~ how generous!
Love your photos , the post was great . Thank you for the chance to win the dinnerware and the book. Looking forward to being able to read the book. Like how you used the small picture frames in your post.
Christina @ The Frugal Homemaker says
Love your tablescape! Those white dishes are beautiful – too pretty to be packed away and not enjoyed everyday. And they pair beautifully with your blue and white dishes.
I would love to own a set of the Mikasa dishes for our famliy dinners.
carol clark says
I would like to have this setting on my table as we say grace and have everyone around the table on sundays this would be so lovely there just beautiful
Wendy Johnson says
the dishes are beautiful, I would love to own them. I have heard of the book but don’t read enough anymore.
FROOT LOOPS says
I WOULD LOVE TO BE ENTERED IN THIS GIVEAWAY. I USED TO GO AND BUY GIFTS AT THE MIKASA WAREHOUSE WHEN I LIVED NEAR IT IN CALIFORNIA. I LOVE YOUR BEAUTIFUL BLUE PATTERNED DISHES THEY DO GO SO WELL WITH THE MIKASA DINNERWARE.
How lovely! I would like to be entered
I love how you added the blue plates to your place settings, adding an additional layer of interest to your table, beautiful!
The white dishes are lovely. I’m especially taken by the little band of dots. I love to read, too, and this sounds like a book I’d enjoy.
Being from South Carolina, I love dishes and books set in the south. I would LOVE to win this giveaway. Thank you
You table setting is beautiful with the white dishes and the blue. My favorite combination. I can’t wait to read the book!
I would love to be entered to win these beautiful dishes. Your photos are lovely. The possibilities are endless when it comes to decorating and setting a pretty table with these Mikasa dishes! Thanks for offering this giveaway.
Anne Marie Petralia says
I love white dishes and would love to be entered in the Mikasa giveaway. I purchased the “Sweet Carolina” book and thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you for your beautiful blog.
Kelly Minyard says
My husband and I are moving from Georgia to Arkansas in a few months, and I would love to be able to decorate our new dining room with a beautiful place setting like this!
Cathy J says
i would love to be entered into this drawing. I love white dishes and would be so excited to own these. Thanks for the opportunity!
jONELL HARRISON says
Yes I do NEED some WHITE WHITE DISHES to finish my collections
What a lovely tablescape! I would like be to be entered in the giveaway.
Kimberly M. says
I would love to be entered in the giveaway. I love Mikasa and these are beautiful dinnerware. Thank you so much for the giveaway. What a great prize someone will win. Hope it’s me.
Tina F says
I would so like to be entered to win the Mikasa dinnerware. It would be nice to have something so elegant on my table for special occasions instead of what I do have right now .Thank you for the chance.
denise low says
Please enter me in this great giveaway. I would love to win this.
Amanda Tonar says
Love your beautiful table setting!
I’d like to be entered in the giveaway.
Tracie Cooper says
I love these dishes and would love to win a set!
I would love to win! Love the Italian countryside set! 🙂
Kathy H. says
Every photo in this posting made me want to spend a long lazy afternoon enjoying warm conversation and iced tea! What a feast for the senses! Thank you.
Jennifer C says
I would love to be entered! Your tablescape is stunning! I love the blue and white.
robyn donnelly says
I love the dinnerware designs and the quality is fantastic. Plus I need more dinnerware.
Anne B says
can’t wait to read
I would like to be entered into this giveaway,,,,!!! Table scape is so inviting,,,I wanna make my own…TY
Sherri V says
I loved this post! These dishes are beautiful. Have a wonderful week!
Sheran Steading says
These dishes are lovely. I would love to have them in my home.
nancy jo says
I love white dishes. so soft and pretty 🙂
I have an obsession with plates!
Cindy Wheatley Holland says
I would love to be entered in this giveaway… Thanks 🙂
Where can I find the blue salad plate?! I love it!