Monday, October 20, 2008

my favorite fall weekend

When you spend weeks looking forward to something, when you put all of your extra energy in total anticipation of the thing—be it holiday, party, wedding or whatever—if you do it right, you can sometimes let the momentum of that much-anticipated event carry you through another few days, even after all the people are gone and the candles are out.

You can live on the leftovers of smoked salmon and capers; finish half-empty bottles of fine wine; nibble on sweets from the fridge. It's as though the party lives on in spirit, glowing with fresh memories, reluctant to burn out. It isn't until you pour that last glass of wine and the last sticky drop drips into your cup, when your kitchen returns to normalcy and the linens are all washed, that you realize the party really is over. It could be a very sad thing indeed if you let your guard down.

Without exaggeration I can say that this past weekend was one of those moments; it was one of the most-anticipated and most amazing weekends I've had in a long time. As I sip on the very last glass from the very last bottle of wine, I would like to spend the next few moments remembering and sharing, instead of feeling blue that it's all over.

As I mentioned before, my sister Hannah flew in on Thursday night last week. She got in pretty late, but we had some catching up to do and a party to plan—a baby shower for our sister Emma—so we didn't waste much time sleeping. Isaac came over to hang out and we made to-do lists.

Finally, we did sleep and when we woke up, we got right to work (I took the day off work). We had to get all our shopping in before we met my parents for lunch at Leunig's. Friday was a blur. We mixed, baked, cooked, ate... went to Emi & Kev's for dinner. Auntie Lucy and Uncle John were there. And then it was Saturday—the day of the party.

The shower really was a great success. My mom made some beautiful arrangements for the apartment. The weather was beautiful. The food was good. All the guests were in great spirits. There were 17 in all, I think. And the guest of honor—our sister Emma—was thoroughly spoiled with gifts and attention. Some people lingered late into the afternoon. Then they were gone and Hannah, Mummy and I had to pat ourselves on the back for a job well done. I was especially proud of the carrot cake and the make-your-own tea station (that was the party favor). Emi got lots of nice prezzies. I gave her a set of Peter Rabbit books. My dad made a bookshelf to put them in. My mom made woolly socks, pants and sweater for the baby. Hannah made a stuffed dog out of one of Papa Roger's old shirts.

We practically fell into bed for a long nap.

Later in the evening, we had a family dinner at the Bearded Frog in Shelburne. The food was amazing. I think the highlight was when Kevin ordered the County Fair for dessert—caramel apples, fried dough and maple cotton candy all served up on a plate.

Hannah and I kept on going: we met up with some friends down at 1/2 bar. It was so fun! We danced a lot. Steve was there and he gave me a copy of his new album as a thank you for dealing with annoying Isaac for the cover shoot. It's really, really good.

Sunday was just as fabulous as the two prior days. Those of us ambitious folks got up very early and went to church. Not me or Hannah though—we needed sleep! Then we all met for brunch at Shelburne farms and then apple picking at Shelburne orchards. The weekend came to a close with a lovely dinner with family and a few friends at our place once again. (This time Hannah cooked—she made yummy pizzas out of all the leftover food! Mummy made an apple crumble.)

I think it's unusual for so many great people to be all in the same place at once, all in the same frame of mind, all wanting to love and be loved, to enjoy life and give joy to others. Yes, we had a lot of good food and good parties, but in the end—and I know I'm going to sound cliche for saying this—it's the people who made it absolutely fabulous.

Here are a bunch more photos from the weekend.

Oh, and I promised I would post links to recipes from the weekend. Here are some of the best:

Sweet Potato Ravioli
Tomato-Basil Skewers
EatingWell's Carrot Cake
Vegetable Satay


1 comment:

jewel said...

so beautiful,penelope. you, hannah and your mom put together an exquisite looking and sounding and memorable weekend for emma.

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