Flowers add to the appearance of any table, and are always in good taste. When the caster is used, the flowers may be in two bouquets at the ends of the table. A new custom now adopted by many families is to dispense with the caster. This gives room on the table for a center-piece of flowers either in a vase or glass. The pretty little glass vinegar jug with the equally pretty pepper and salt bottles now to be found in any crockery store serve the purpose of a caster. In the cut, I have retained the caster, as the majority of housekeepers might be unwilling to discard it. The pepper and salt bottles are also represented, although the peppers are not necessary if the caster is used. Those who prefer individual salt-cellars, will, of course, use them.
The knife and fork are sometimes placed side by side horizontally, sometimes the fork at the left and the knife at right angles to it just beyond the plate, and sometimes as seen in the cut. With so many different tastes, there can be no absolute rule.
Goblets may be grouped together on a sideboard, on a side table, in a tray at one end of the table, or one put at each place, as seen in the picture.
Napkins are folded in all varieties of shapes. On the whole, the simple square fold, I think, is preferable to all others, in which case lay one at each place. In the picture, they show to better advantage in the goblets.
In families where no servant is kept, it is perfectly proper for a guest to assist, in waiting upon any dish sufficiently near. One may help to the butter, another to the cranberry or other sauce, and another to the vegetable that is to be served in a separate dish. Two kinds of vegetables are quite enough for the host to wait upon, especially when a turkey is to be carved, for he must also help to the dressing and the gravy.
When this course is finished, remove the plates, knives and forks, platter, and vegetable dishes. Brush the table-cloth with a crumb brush.
If the dessert be pie or pudding, it should be brought on in the dish in which it was baked and placed with plates before the host or hostess, either of whom may serve it. If pie, let the one who serves it put a fork upon each plate. If it be pudding requiring a spoon, the spoon-holder may be passed to each one. For cake and fruit, put a plate with knife and fork at each place and pass the dessert around.