Showing Hospitality at Home with Fall Tablescapes

 

fall table decor
Fall Pumpkin Tablescape

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Show hospitality at home with a fall tablescape and a pumpkin spice cake with butter frosting. Bake a pumpkin dessert with fresh pumpkin.

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Showing hospitality to family, friends, and acquaintances can be a cozy occasion with a fall tablescape of the season’s beautiful foliage colors. Light candles from autumn’s cozy scents like apple and pumpkin spice. If you like apple, try the Macintosh-scented candle. It’s amazing!

Your guests will be warmly greeted by the magnificent aroma of apples. In fact, light two candles – apples and pumpkin. Set the apple candle near the entry of your home, and place the pumpkin candle in your kitchen. 

Smelling both apple and pumpkin indicates something sweet, a hint of a delectable dessert – like the Pumpkin Spice Cake below.

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Decorating a tablescape, preparing a meal, and lighting the candles blend well together to initially welcoming guests in your home. Take a few moments with me to consider what it means to show hospitality.

Is hospitality more than entertaining?

“Is hospitality more than entertaining?” will result in differing opinions. It depends on who you are asking. When you entertain family and friends in your home, though, that is showing hospitality. 

I love Megan Hill’s view about hospitality versus entertaining. She says, “Hospitality is more than entertaining. But it doesn’t have to be less.”

Megan shows examples from the Bible of how the best was presented to guests.  She mentions that “throughout Scripture, hosts honor their guests with extraordinarily effort-consuming hospitality. Abraham fed his angelic guests meat that was “tender and good” with cakes made from “fine flour” (Gen. 18:6–7).” Take a few moments to read her article. It’s an interesting thought about entertaining guests.

According to the Cambridge Dictionary, entertaining (when used as a noun) means the activity of inviting people to your home and giving them food and drink. When referring to entertaining in this way, hospitality in the home means the same thing.

Hospitality is defined in a Cambridge Dictionary as “a friendly welcome for guests or strangers, which often includes offering them food, drink, etc.”.

So both words mean that guests are coming over, and this includes offering them food and drink.

What does the Bible say about offering hospitality?

1 Peter 4:9-10 NIV says:

9 “Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.”

Maybe your gift is baking. Perhaps, you have a knack for decorating. Or you could have the gift of humor that will have your visitors laughing throughout the meal. More than likely, you have more than one gift.

If you love to bake, decorate a tablescape that focuses on something you’ve baked. Like place a cake on a cake pedestal and put it at the center of the table.

Add a touch of nature from the current season. Choose something that brings you joy. Serving guests in your home joyfully will make them feel welcome.

Showing hospitality in the home certainly is about serving others. But it’s also about you. It’s an opportunity for you to use your God-given gifts to serve guests in your home.

Be you. Serve others in ways that you enjoy. For instance, I love cooking for others, gardening and enjoying the seasonal colors of the flowers, and decorating my home with seasonal hues and a variety of candles. But you may not even care for candles because of allergies. And that’s okay. Serve in the way that is you.

A tablescape in my home in the fall, as you’ve probably figured out already, might include flowers, a candle, a pumpkin, or a cake stand with a freshly baked pumpkin spice or chocolate cake (I mean doesn’t everybody love chocolate?!).

Decorate the kitchen table in your style

Do you decorate the kitchen table according to the season, your current mood, or strictly your interior design style?  Decorating the kitchen table means, for me, always including a favorite scented candle. A candle can fit all styles. Its scent brings about emotion, comfort, Deja Vu, and a pleasant sense of comfort to family or guests.

I love smelling the aroma of a favorite-scented candle that fills the house as I’m doing housework, writing a blog post, reading my Bible or enjoying the company of a relative or friend. 

How would your friends describe your decorating style?

Not sure what your style is? Have fun decorating in your style with a touch of the current season. Take a little time to explore these decorating styles to see which suits you best:

  • minimalist
  • modern farmhouse
  • cottage
  • rustic
  • traditional
  • eclectic
  • French country
  • Bohemian
  • mid-century modern
  • other

Family and friends who visit me know that I love seasonal decorating with a vintage style. For example, I couldn’t resist adding a touch of cotton in the vase with the flower. Notice that the fall table decor includes two pie pumpkins (and, of course, candles).

kitchen table fall decor with pumpkins
Kitchen Table Fall Decor with Pumpkins

Why vintage? 

Vintage means history, family, life’s journey, nostalgic, and comfort. So when hanging up a picture or item on the wall in my home, there is a special meaning to the piece. For example, the cotton in the above photo brings back memories of tales passed down in my family of the cotton my dad and grandmother used to pick. My dad’s sister (now the age of 89) told me stories of when she, as a young girl, picked cotton. The whole family participated in the cotton picking. She still remembers the most she ever picked – 134 pounds in one day. 

Fall and Cotton Season Tablescape
Fall and Cotton Season Tablescape

Cotton harvesting can extend into November in some states. In my home state, Texas, cotton is usually harvested from July through the early part of fall.

Decorating a fall tablescape with pumpkins

What memories do you think of when you’re decorating a fall tablescape with pumpkins?

pumpkin table decor
Fall Pumpkin Tablescape

Many times through the years, I’ve baked pumpkin bars from freshly-boiled pumpkins. Decorating a tablescape in the fall with pumpkins reminds me of going to pumpkin farms with my husband and daughter, Chrissie, during our RV lifestyle years. Fond memories. We would let Chrissie pick the pumpkin, and I would cook it and make pumpkin bars.

Now I get to make fall pumpkin memories with my grandchildren. For instance, on the last visit to see my grand littles, I boiled pumpkin and made a pumpkin spice cake and roasted pumpkin seeds. 

pumpkin farms with grandchildren
Pumpkin Patch Memories

You’d think finding festive fall napkins would be fairly easy when decorating a fall tablescape with pumpkins. Not necessarily so. My husband and I had invited a couple over for a fall lunch recently, and I wanted to use pretty seasonal napkins similar to the one below. I didn’t have time to order them on Amazon, or I would have loved purchasing these:

The picture on the napkin reminds me of going to the pumpkin patch and of the warm feeling of comfort that autumn brings. I used white paper napkins for the table setting with our friends. You can’t go wrong with white napkins, paper or cloth. 

Plan a meal with a pumpkin dessert

Plan a meal for your guests, and top it off with a pumpkin dessert. Need suggestions for the dessert? Here are a few:

  1. pumpkin bars
  2. pumpkin pie
  3. pumpkin spice cake
  4. pumpkin cinnamon rolls
  5. pumpkin fruit dip
  6. pumpkin dump cake

Make this Pumpkin Spice Cake with Butter Frosting:

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Butter Frosting

Pumpkin cake made with fresh pumpkin and butter frosting

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Servings 20
Calories 235 kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups cooked fresh pumpkin, mashed
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Butter Frosting

  • 1 stick salted butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups powdered sugar

Instructions

How to Cook a Pie Pumpkin

  1. Cut the top off of a pie pumpkin.

    how to prepare a pumpkin for boiling
  2. Cut the pumpkin into two halves.

  3. Scrape out the seeds and stringy part of the inside of the pumpkin.

  4. Set the seeds aside in a cup or bowl.

  5. Pour water into a large pot, half-full.

  6. Add the two pumpkin halves to the water and heat to boiling.

  7. Boil approximately 20 minutes (or until pumpkin is soft when cut through with a knife).

  8. Scoop out the pumpkin into a bowl and cool at room temperature.

  9. Discard the outer part of the pumpkin.

Pumpkin Spice Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

  2. Grease a 9x13-inch glass pan.

  3. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves in a bowl and whisk together, then set aside.

  4. Mix the vegetable oil, eggs, brown sugar, granulated sugar, cooled pumpkin, and vanilla extract in a separate bowl.

  5. Add the vegetable oil mixture to the dry ingredients and mix together until smooth.

  6. Pour into the greased baking dish, and bake for 30-35 minutes.

  7. Test it at 30 minutes by putting a toothpick in the center of the cake.

  8. If the toothpick looks clean, the cake is done.

  9. Cool the cake on a hot pad or trivet.

Butter Frosting

  1. Soften butter in the microwave by using the defrost method.

  2. Add the vanilla extract.

  3. Mix in the powdered sugar with a hand mixer on low (carefully so that the sugar doesn't scatter everywhere) a little at a time.

  4. Beat at medium to high speed for 2 minutes after the butter, vanilla, and powdered sugar are mixed well.

  5. Spread the frosting onto the cooled pumpkin cake.

  6. The cake is easier to slice when it has set for an hour or more in the fridge.

  7. But if you can't wait, go ahead and enjoy a piece of warm pumpkin spice cake freshly topped with butter frosting.

Recipe Notes

Assuming that you have butter, oil, and spices on hand, the estimated cost of this recipe is $7.00.

You can see that I used a glass baking dish for this recipe. The glass dish I like to bake in also comes with a red cover similar to this one:

How do you decorate in the fall with pumpkins? What is the go-to pumpkin dessert that you enjoy making for special Halloween or harvest occasions?

One of the easiest pumpkin desserts I’ve ever made is pumpkin dump cake. It’s my next recipe I’ll be sharing with you. So come back soon to see my three-ingredient pumpkin dump cake recipe. See you then!

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