We partnered with Kristin Schell, blogger of The Turquoise Table. Check out her hospitality tips for better connecting with friends and neighbors over coffee.
Sit a Spell
My grandmother had the sweetest expressions. When neighbors would drop by for a visit, I remember hearing her invite guests to join her in the living room. “Come, sit a spell,” she would say.
As a young child I was curious by the invitation to sit a spell. Maybe Grandma and her friends knew magic? These days the Southern expression which means “to sit for a while” is rarely heard. Although, a magic wand would come in handy to create time on the calendar to sit a spell with friends.
Have you ever felt like it was impossible to find time to slow down and connect with friends?
Meet Me at the Table
One of my favorite ways to gather with friends at the Turquoise Table is for a simple cup of coffee. Sometimes our coffee dates are spontaneous. I’ll send a quick text: meet me at the table in 20 minutes. A friend or two will show up with their own traveler mugs of coffee, often with bed-head and in yoga pants.
These impromptu mornings at the Turquoise Table are a delightful way to start the day. No planning, no worries about clearing the clutter from the kitchen counters, no excuses. Just a quick way to sit down for a few minutes and connect with friends.
Unplug & Stay A While
Sometimes coffee dates at the Turquoise Table are more planned. Recently, my neighbors Mandy, Amy and Shannon joined me at the table. I made a pot of coffee, grabbed my favorite mugs and we settled in for conversation.
Judging by our calendars, none of us had time for coffee at the table. For busy, working mothers, the end-of-school is the most hectic time of the year. We joked that we should wear t-shirts declaring “May is the new December.”
We encouraged each other to finish the school year strong, or at least just finish! Soon, our summer happy hours at the Turquoise Table would kick-off.
Conversation Leads to Connection
We’ve learned something in our neighborhood. Gathering at the Turquoise Table is more than just a fun thing to do. It’s become a way of life for us. At first I wondered if coffee dates at the Turquoise Table would matter.
Four years of spontaneous and planned coffee dates at the table do matter. Whether we meet for fifteen minutes or linger longer, conversations add up over time and have led us into treasured friendships.
As my friend Mandy says when it’s time to go, “Let’s push pause on this convo and pick back up in a couple days.”
Keep it Simple
Hosting a coffee date at the Turquoise Table is simple. Think about a friend or neighbor you would love to see, but never seem to find a way to connect. Or, next time you run into a friend and say, “we should get together for coffee,” be bold and propose tomorrow! Or the next day.
Brew a pot of coffee. Or, as my grandmother would say, “put the kettle on,” and welcome your friends to the table.
Our favorite way to beat the heat in the summer is for an afternoon iced coffee. My friend Kimberley’s mother, Mimi, serves this delicious iced coffee treat all summer long. On a recent visit to Mimi’s, she shared her simple recipe with me. It’s too good not to pass along. It takes no time to make and the recipe is per glass, so you can make as many or as few as you need.
Mimi’s Iced Coffee Recipe
1 heaping teaspoon of instant coffee
½ cup boiling water
½ cup milk
Sugar or sweetener, to taste
In a tall glass, stir together instant coffee and boiling water. Stir in sugar or sweetener and milk. Add ice and serve.
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