Swan Swoon

I went to the Lenox warehouse in Cranbury NJ today. Key words: Lenox. Warehouse. !!!

Don’t know about it? It’s a Sam’s Club sized concrete-floored, steel-shelved, flourescent-lit Nirvana of Lenox giftware, China, dinnerware and crystal discounts. I never take a picture of the magnitude of the place because I am always busy taking pictures of individual things and emailing those images to people as I try to talk them into letting me pick up things for them. As a strategy, that rarely works.

This isn't my photo. I found it on a Chinese language blog by a world traveler who was so impressed that this shopping trip merited a separate entry.

source: ???

This photo is the best I can do but it just does not convey the magnitude of the real experience. That stack in the forefront advertising 60% off is the smallest stack I’ve ever seen. Most have a footprint 6 times this size and 2 boxes higher.

I was shopping for wedding shower favors*. It might sound extravagant, but the discounts are so deep and the coupons so abundant that a person would have to be a fool not to shop here for shower favors. I won’t ruin the surprise and say what I finally selected, but as an example, look at this:

5" tall "Dogwood" vases. Why did I not buy these for myself? They would be perfect for the red Knock Out roses that fill my patio garden all summer long.

Most items – except for dinnerware -are individually boxed but these happened to be a set of two. I don’t know the retail ticket on these but it doesn’t really matter – when all was said and done what with the discounts and the one-day specials and the coupons, they came out to 5 bucks each. (pause for !!!) I should have bought them for myself!

Remarkably, I did not buy a single thing for myself and Lenox is my thing. Well, one of my things. But it’s in the general category of “dishes” so it all makes sense (to me). [note to self: take a deep breath and calm down.]

What I really went in search for was a mini Swan Nut Cup. I know! I was born in the wrong time. But they had them!

2 " x 2 1/2" Some people use these as salt cellars - hello, 1960! - or ring holders. I didn't think they still made these but lo and behold, there they were at a price lower than the eBay posers list prices.

This swan was so petite and delicate. I could have used these as individual favors and used an 8″ Swan Basket  as the base of the floral centerpiece. The bride is big fan of all things bird, and swans you know mate for life and since she is marrying my son, well … But I didn’t get these either. REGRET! NEED MORE BRIDES.

Anyway, bridal shower coming soon at the White Dog Cafe in Philadelphia.

It’s one of those urban restaurants that has its own organic farm 30 miles away. ‘At the White Dog Café we are committed to serving local, seasonal ingredients from farms that practice sustainability.’ WTF is that on top of the rigatoni, do you think?

* FYI – my FDIL is so awesome, I would have gladly paid retail for her shower favors. But I didn’t.


Post script: OMG. White Dog update!  Madame Blavatsky! Who even knows what she was talking about? I’m gonna bet she was a locavore, though.

“Both the name and the stone façade come from another incarnation. In the second half of the 1800s, the building served as a parlor for a colorful Russian émigré intellectual and writer known as Madame Helena Blavatsky, who created the Theosophical Society, an organization that promoted universal brotherhood and spiritualism. While living in the townhouse, Blavatsky became gravely ill. She consulted doctors, and a surgeon recommended amputating a leg. But Blavatsky refused, and made a remarkable and speedy recovery that she attributed to a white dog that slept on her bad leg every night until she was well. Thus, the name.” Appetite for Travel: White Dog Cafe


9 thoughts on “Swan Swoon

  1. My grandmother had salt cellars that came out for holiday dinners. They were scalloped and translucent like sea glass. They had individual teeny silver spoons. I’m not really a tableware guy, but those must have made an impression since I remember them after 50 years.

    How elegant to spoon your salt rather than all that unseemly shaking.

  2. The swan is beautiful. I have a frosted glass swan that holds a votive candle, but would love to have that swan. As for the green stuff on the rigatoni, perhaps it’s sour cream and/or yogurt blended with something green, like spinach or parsley.

  3. Why don’t I ever get nice things like the swans when I go to showers? The last one I went to I got a cheap candle wrapped up in nylon net. White swans would be useful and a lasting reminder of the event.

    • I should mention that this is going to be a small event – only 10 people. That’s why I had the latitude to get a fancy-schmancy thing for the favor -it’s not like I had to get 60 items. The bride already had her main shower on the West Coast where all of her lady peeps are. This is the East Coast affiliate shower.

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