The week has simply gotten away from me! Ryan has been working extremely long hours in these last days of September and I have been getting ready for Ryan’s parents to visit. Only four more days until they arrive! I can’t believe how quickly this year has flown by!
Today I would like to tell you about the three weeks I spent in sunny AZ and the shower that I and my Co-Matron of Honor threw for my sister, and the bride to be, Charly.
After the horror of the plane ride had faded and my mother, father, and myself had gathered my baggage we stepped out into the muggy heat of a Phoenix summer night. I must confess that there are truly no words. Now you have to realize that both Ryan and I were born and raised in Phoenix, and managed to spend the majority of our adult lives trying to leave the stiflingly hot and overcrowded desert, before we gave it up and settled into out doom! When we were assigned to Germany it was with shock, fear, and a little edge of joy that we would get to see snow and fog… But, at the moment I stepped off of that plane it had been more than a year since I had been truly, blessedly, and completely…. WARM! It was wonderful… for about 10 days… and then it was HOT! The grass is always greener ect. ect. ect. Ah but it was wonderful to be in the desert again…
The next few days included much visiting and shopping. I can honestly say that at the end of it, sitting here in my quite sitting room on a rainy day, that I can not remember the sequence of events for those first ten days or so… I can only remember that I was kept busy! So I’ll just let the few pictures I managed to get in the midst of all the running too and fro do the talking!
Here you have the bride to be… my lovely sister Charly.
And the Groom to be… Ryan’s handsome brother Zach!
They make each other laugh, they make each other happy, and they make each other sappy… not a better foot to start on than that!
My mom and I stole a few hours to go shopping! Thank goodness she’s a good driver!
We made an unscheduled stop to see my sister Becky along the way…
You think Becky and I look alike and then you see her and my mom together and it’s a bit scary!
Since Charly worked during the days and so did my mom about half the week, I got to spend a lot of time with me dad. We had a blast! As I have gotten older we have gotten closer… He’s now one of my best friends and we did everything together before Ryan and I left. It was good to see him again and just hang out!
And then the day of the party dawned. The Co Matron of Honor, Kallie, and I coordinated this thing in frantic emails from 6000 miles apart. And it ended up being a staggering amount of work… but I must say it was a huge success!
I cooked for 11 hours on Friday and another 6 hours on Saturday before the shower… By the time the first guests arrived I was already ready to sleep for days! Here I am shortly before it started… Oh and the theme for this elaborate day? TEA PARTY!!!
We had fruit and veggie platters with the appropriate dips at the beginning of the line…
And then you turn to find this! I had made; Pumpkin ginger bread (loaf and muffin form), Zucchini bread (loaf and muffin form), Pumpkin chocolate chip bread (loaf and muffin form), scones with local jams brought from Germany, two pumpkin cheesecakes, Spinach balls, hot spinach and artichoke dip served with pita chips, hot crab dip served with crackers, a spinach and artichoke appetizer ring, and gurkensalat. And then Kallie and Charly made pink and brown cupcakes to match the color theme of the party.
Charly and I right before the festivities were to begin. (Sorry for the glassy eyed look in both our eyes but we were tired. I was tempted to scrap this picture since we both look weird but it turned out to be THE ONLY one of the two of us together in the three week visit!)
And Charly and Kallie together!
Here is Charly posing with the table and one of her flower girls!
And then the guests arrived. We ended up with about 25 women all ready to sit and talk and drink tea. We began with the food and a little time to visit.
This picture is one of my all time favorites. Could there be a better caricatured of a pregnant woman who has been set before a smorgasbord of her favorite treats?
Even I found a moment to stuff my face in between acts!
When the eating was done mom and I boiled water and filled the teapots for our afternoon tea.
Let me take a quick moment to introduce you to Earlene… This is the woman who put the love of a good tea party into all of us girls. She had tea parties for all of us who went to church together when we were little girls and so she gets all the credit for the success that this day became! Thanks Aunt Lee for giving us the love of a good cup of tea, an extended little finger, and saying “One lump or two?”
This was the tea table. I think we did a wonderful job setting it up with all of my mom’s teapots and the tea cups that three generations of the women in my family have collected. We had four kinds of tea, real cream and sugar cubes, and honey from Germany all set up. The ladies were asked to come to the tea table, choose a teacup, and make their cup of the genial beverage.
Once all the tea was poured all of the young women who had learned this art at the knees of the women who’s cups we drank from posed with the bride to be and our formal tea.
Charly making tea in her favorite family tea cup and one that is already marked for her… One day she’ll teach her own little girl how to extend her little finger and sip delicately from this very cup. Though I can hear Charly saying quite clearly… “Not until she’s old enough to not break it like I did!”
A toast to the bride!
Such a lovely afternoon.
I think that this may very well be my favorite picture from the whole three week trip. This is all four sisters from both families now (or soon to be) doubly joined by marriage. Becky, me, Charly, and Ryan’s baby sister, Josie.
My Aunt Lee insisted that I pose with my teacup at the table!
After the tea part was done and we were all quietly sipping and talking once again, we went into the family room where we had a big surprise for the ladies! Kallie and a few of the other girls had put together a wonderful game! They had interviewed Zach and asked him 27 questions. They asked Charly the questions, let her answer, and then played Zach’s answer. It was wonderful! Zach’s answers were priceless and something that every bride wants to keep in her hope chest for all time to show her daughters… I won’t tattle on my wonderful brother in law but I will repeat just one answer.
Kallie: “Zach, what is your favorite color?”
~Pause the video~
Kallie: “Okay Charly what do you think Zach said?”
Charly: “Hmmm he always says blue and green but he goes back and forth. I’ll say blue…. No wait… Let’s go with green. Yep definitely green.”
Kallie: “Okay here we go”
~Roll the tape~
Zach: “My favorite color? Charly’s eyes!” (She was of course right as her eyes are green!)
~Insert the sound of 25 women going “Aaaawwww…”~
And he was sick and had no warning… Good job brother!
And of course Charly was just swept away even more than she already had been…
After the video was over and Charly had won the rumble that ensued and emerged victories to keep her title as Zach’s one and only fiance (what do you think I’m kidding?)… we moved on to gifts.
She got some wonderful gifts to begin their new life together and of course the ever present one piece of lingerie!
After gifts we watched a ten minute slide show that I made for Charly and Zach. It was set to their three favorite love songs and came out beautifully. (The song on my site right now is their favorite love song)
The day was a huge success. There was one point when Kallie and I were standing side by side, exhausted and pleased with how it all turned out. Our ears pricked up just in time to hear Charly exclaim…
“This was the best shower I’ve ever been too and it’s mine!”
Could we have received a higher compliment than that? I don’t think so!!!
The ladies slowly left for home and hearth full of chatter and good cheer and then came Zach! Anxious to see what they had received for the shower and… what else? Ready to drink a little tea and pop his pinky!!!
One of the gifts was a gag gift from Zach’s mom, Cheryl. A veil hat and a ball and chain hat… We couldn’t resist a little gag reel.
You may now kiss the bride!
Ghetto bride and groom.
And so with that I will bid you farewell. I still have much to do in the next few days as end of year comes to a close for Ryan and as we wait impatiently for Denny and Cheryl to arrive. I don’t know how often I’ll be able to get on here for the next few weeks but I’ll try to keep up with everyone!