The table is perfect and the meltdown has passed. Great-grandmother’s French Haviland china is eclectically paired with new wine glasses since there’s not enough of the old crystal. It works. The monogrammed silver is from 1909 and is precisely set with crisply pressed napkins. Knife and spoon to the right, forks to the left, with the salad fork outside.

Flowers and fine candles fill the center, a picture of beauty, style and order. He’s ready to seat eight.

Finally, the guests arrive. Sipping his Old Fashioned, he snickers as he watches them compliment his wife on how beautiful her table looks.

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