Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Olive Company?

Dear Helen Hartman,
 Have all your weekend visitors gone? If not then maybe you can help me.  I would love to find a way to get rid of unwanted guests – and please don’t suggest putting on jammies and going to bed, they just think it means we’re having a slumber party!

Dear Loved One,
 Well, first off Helen never has UNWANTED guests. In fact, some are wanted in several states (ba-dum-dum). Helen doesn't have jammies, either, but that's another story. Let's just say if Helen got ready for bed(tonight it's a T shirt that says Of course I'm Jolly with Santa lifting a beer mug)the house would empty out .

Helen doesn’t even have unwelcome guests.
Because Helen is a gracious hostess who warmly greets anyone who shows up at her door? 

It's for you. It's reality calling.
That’s so funny!

It's because Helen has invested a great deal of time and no small amount of battery power on her pocket Taser educating others not to show up at her home uninvited.
Can you guess what this 1950s ad is hawking? Nope. Nuh-uh. Not that either. Worcestershire sauce - that's the face she makes when "he" finds out she forget to buy some!

There are some people who don't get it when you just tell them to go away. While Helen has found that honesty is the best policy. Insanity makes a better defense.

By 'unwanted' do you mean guests who overstay their welcome?

"How can we talk behind her back when she won't leave?"  (You'd think those curtains would make her run into the street - until you see that lawn, is that where they grow plastic Easter basket grass?)
Yeah, Helen has met a few of those.

Those guests just need a little…
Don't make me poison your dinner.

Once you’ve reached your limit you might try this little trick:
I don't let guests linger. When I'm ready for them to go, I just whip out my vacuum, attach the hose and suck the olives right out of their martini glasses. No civilized person stays at a party without martini olives, it just isn't done.
Ask them to help you tidy up, then go to bed. They will decide they have to go. Or maybe they will stay and clean your house. Win/win.

None of this passive aggressive stuff…
Passive aggressive? To not tell my guest who filled a bowl from the counter without asking that they were eating from the cat's dish? I like to think of it as good manners... or at least good entertainment, for ME. (ps - this actually did happen at Helen's. She never told. Um, until now.)

The best way to handle guests is to set boundaries from the start. Begin with the way you serve your guests that leaves no doubt that you are not to be messed with.
My spooky table setting starring some of my vintage Ruby Red dishes, black and white dishes (from Kroger), laboratory elements picked up at flea markets, skeleton keys from Michael's, cheese cloth and a DIY candlestick.
Painted a yardsale wooden candle stick with silver then 'tarnished' it with a light spray of chalk board paint.

Martha Stewart plastic test tubes from Michael's were a perfect fit for a vintage office stamp carousel - no telling what I may put in these.  Salt? Candy? Arsenic? 
Eyeballling this disembodied hand? Vintage thingy (ring holder? Card holder? Paperweight) and shot glass with glass beads as an ice bucket for a small bottle of bubbly (bubbles from wedding supply store with a new label by me - yes, Helen gives bubbles to guests. You have to go outside to blow them... once that's done, shut the door and lock it. Ahhhh.)
My weekend guest, btw, didn’t stay too long. I can't share her face, she's kinda a big deal, of course. In fact I was sad to see this side of her. 

Suffice it to say, she doesn’t drink martinis yet, but when she does, her olives are safe.

Joining: Rednesday, Share the Love Wednesday, Wow Us Wednesday, Anything Goes Wednesday, Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps on the Porch

If you often say: "One Day I Hope to be as Awesome as I Pretend to be on Facebook." then liking Helen is the first step!


  1. This is such a hoot! Love the advice!!
    Great tablescape too. I wonder if a little bottle that says "poison" on it left on the kitchen countertop might make that unwanted guest decide that it's time to move on? lol
    Ladybug Creek

  2. I so appreciate these little tidbits of advice on dealing with unwelcome guests. I'll bring arsenic to the next tea party...after all, everyone needs a party favor. Sea Witch

  3. I'm kinda liking the taser idea. My dad and step mother never fail to drop in when the house is at its worst.

    Love what you did with the wooden candelabra. And aging it with chalkboard paint? Whod'a thunkit? It also never occurred to me to use red dishes for Halloween, but how clever! The tablescape is perfect!

  4. I miss adult Halloween parties. Since our party turned family-friendly the olive filled glasses don't come out until all the kiddies are in bed. Your table setting is fantastic. I'm soaking up all the goodies.

  5. LOL Karen - nothing says don't stay too long like a death threat!

  6. Arsenic goes in Elderberry wine. Not sure what goes in tea.... hmmm.... Thanks for stopping by!

  7. Thanks Wanda - this is a first for me, using the red for Halloween, I used to get them out and use them Thanksgiving through Valentine's Day. Love the blood red effect.

  8. You mean not everybody makes that face when they run out of Worcestershire? Um....what other expression is there?

    The tablescape is great! For some reason, I especially love the repurposed rubber stamp holder.

  9. Dana - isn't that stamp holder fun? It looks all mad scientist-y. Yes, that is the only face one makes when one runs out - how does that happen? I think we still have the same bottle I got the first year we got married!

  10. Love your tablescape, you did a great job on the candle holder! And me too-I have that t-shirt!:@)

  11. What a wonderful blog. Love the tablescape.

  12. Your table turned out great and I love the stamp holder. After a tough day at work it's great to read your blog as it always makes me laugh out loud.

  13. Thanks y'all.

    Welcome Lori

    Helen and Daughters - love reading your blog and facebook updates as well.

  14. You keep writing as humorously as this and I SWEAR one day I'm gonna turn up on your doorstep, unwanted or not, so can you can take me shopping/thrifting/whatever! Seriously though I can't wait to do a US buying trip but it's a couple of years off yet.

  15. IMHO, you win the Funniest Blogger of the Decade award!!! Thanks for stopping by Redo 101 and loving my owl Christmas table runner, you're a keeper friend! As Schwarzenegger once said, "I'll be bach!"

    Mary @ Redo 101

  16. Thanks Kitty! I do laugh a lot when I shop - often when I see myself in the mirror!

    Thanks for coming by Mary. If you learned anything from this blog you know - when people say "I'll be Bach" I reply "I'll be Haydn!"

  17. Elouise and ArchieOctober 12, 2011 at 8:43 AM

    Looks like fun. Wish I was there, your newest follower.

  18. Fabulous tablescape with such terrific elements, makes a very scary table!! What if one is poisoned, lol! Thank you for sharing the vintage pictures, I love them. Hugs, FABBY

  19. This looks so fun! What a great tablescape.


  20. Thanks Fabby and Jenny - off to visit your blogs!

  21. How DID you know I was hoping to someday as awesome as I pretend to be on FB...or as awesome as Helen Hartman???

  22. Helen, Helen, Helen, how...HOW did you know that we have started getting the "I'm coming and bringing my hoard with me" phone calls, two each, daily? Now I know what to do. Oh wait. I already have to follow them around with a bucket and a rag, because they're such p-gs. They'll just think it's normal.

    BTW, love the Metlox pottery in the first pic. Reality is waaayy over rated.

  23. Thanks Karen and Marigene. No post yesterday because the guests showed up again - boomerang guests, who knew?

    Mom Walds - OMG, one of my FAV things about old magazine is to drool over the STUFF. The best is finding something I own and seeing how much it cost or how it was presented.

  24. That's it! The jury decision is in: You are certifiable!!!!!!!!!!! This was so funny! I was literally LOL! The part about the plastic Easter basket grass...hilarious! (Although people have said that about our lawn because my husband gets all Forrest Gump about it.) So, so funny! You have quite a way of answering a question, my dear. Have a great weekend, and please get back on your meds! :-)

  25. Great post! Now I know what I can do with my office stamp carousel this Halloween!!!

  26. Thanks y'all. Still have guests and am so tired... when will there be time to post again???

  27. I don't worry about guests staying too long - I just don't invite 'em in the first place, hah!


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