Saturday, December 31, 2016

as the sun sets on 2016

Not a big celebrator of the New Years but a pretty sunset on one of the last days of the year seems kind of appropriate.  For me it  has been a challenging year and I am looking forward to a new start.  Not the whole year was a challenge, there were some really, really neat parts. 

My daughter, Nikole, got married to a really wonderful guy, Brad.  I officially became a mother-in-law and couldn't be prouder.  We had lots of opportunities to celebrate. 

There was a terrific engagement party to start things off.  My younger daughter, Caitlin, who was the maid of honor, determined the theme and decorations and both of the families helped with food.  Lots of their friends were able to join them for an evening of food and drink and visiting. It was a house party.  Her dad provided the house.  Lots of black and white and color photos in black frames and white platters and serving pieces.  The food was part Minnesota favorites and part Dominican recipes.  Great evening.   

The wedding was a destination wedding at a lovely resort in Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic where we had several days of beach fun highlighted by a beautiful ceremony in April and followed immediately by cocktails and hors doerves and music during the pictures and later a outdoor candlelit dinner reception.  The bride was lovely, the groom handsome, both a little bit sunburned.  It was such a special time and I was so glad to be a part of it. 

In June there was a fun bridal shower held at my sister's house.  It was supposed to be a backyard party on her lovely patio and flower edged yard but the weather intervened and instead it was held in her cutely  decorated garage.  The extended family is quite large and it was well attended so lots of people, food, visiting and presents.  Food, visiting--I see a trend here... This time the theme was long tables filled with vintage china on gold chargers with beverages served from vintage punch bowls in matching cups.  The maid of honor's hobnail and milk glass vases were filled with hydrangeas cut from my mother's garden and lined the center of the tables.  My dad's  ambulance ride and hospitalization 90 minutes away 36 hours before the party made for a little last minute chaos and some tweaking of the plans but it ended up being a fun time.

The final event was a reception in July.  It was held in a brewery which was a fun venue.  Great appetizers and bar food set up as a buffet with a couple of different 'courses' and drinks.  The bride and groom selected a wonderful menu and did a great job with the decorations.  The decorations were floor length black tablecloths on some long banquet tables and some stand up pub height tables.  The groom built wooden boxes that held rosemary plants and those and hydrangea from their garden in vases topped the tables.  Some music and dancing.  And visiting. Such a great party. 

And since I haven't posted since Christmas

Some of my kids were home for Christmas.  Between them there were lots of invitations for celebratory meals with grandparents and the 'other side'.  We ended up having a light supper at the farm of butternut squash soup and bread sticks before heading into my folks for more food and presents there.  Here is a couple of quick pictures of the table.  We were originally planning to take the soup to town to have there and decided at literally the last minute to eat first and take only the 'planned-overs' to share.

We served the soup out of one of the soup tureens that I acquired while thrifting this summer.  My Christmas dishes are by Happy Holidays by Nikko.  Green check on the table, white candlesticks and napkins.  Gold chargers. Crystal napkin rings.  Matching Nikko stemware held ice water.  Wexford coasters held the bottles of beer that accompanied the soup.  The soup plates were filled from the tureen at the end of the table and passed.  The soup plates were a Christmas gift from Nikole and Brad last year and work great for either soup or pasta.   We gathered at the farm on the 23rd.  Nikole and Brad were missing as they have a very sick dog.  We missed them and hope that Indiana continues to improve.  Christmas Eve morning was brunch and then the rest of the day and Christmas Day I was at my parents with my siblings as my kids were with extended family. 

Happy 2017! 

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