As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Practicing What I Preached

Last weekend was full!  Full of food, full of fun, full of fellowship...and, yes, full of lists and preparation and busyness. Do you think I'm a little nuts for hosting two gatherings in one weekend?  

Sometimes it just works out like that.

When we decided to host a soup supper for our church fellowship, we presented several dates to the group, and Saturday, November 3rd, was the day that worked for most people.  Kati's birthday was also that week, and we typically have family celebrations on Sunday afternoons.  So that meant back-to-back events.  

Let me tell you how we pulled it off...without pulling our hair out!    

We began earlier in the week by making a master list.  The list included cleaning tasks, mini projects, foods to prepare, and serving/decorating details.  We not only planned what to do, but when to do it, so that everything didn't get pushed into Saturday morning.  (We procrastinator types need to plan when, and we depend on the other family members to keep us accountable.)  

All week, we plugged away at our list...a little dusting, a little vacuuming, paring down the magazine stacks (yes, stackS, as in plural), shopping, ironing tablecloths tossing tablecloths in the dryer with damp laundry to ease out the wrinkles, making birthday dessert, baking bread.  

Until Friday, which was Kati's birthday and we put away our list so that we could celebrate.  Oh yes indeed, we celebrate that girl!  

Saturday was a chilly November day, perfect for a soup supper!  

Back to "how we pulled it off"...

Our fellowship has had soup suppers for years (this is the first one that we have hosted), and everyone pitches in on the menu.  That meant that we didn't have to do all the cooking.  I made a pot of Baked Potato Soup.  Kati had made sweet French bread (thank you, Deanna and Rachel!).  And at the last minute, she decided to make some no-bake cookies.  But we had two other delicious pots of soup and scrumptious homemade bread and scones and apple crisp...yum!

I made my go-to hors d'oeuvres.  

We ate from disposable bowls and plates and used pretty paper napkins which made for easy clean-up, important on this busy weekend.  

I forgot to play the music I had selected.  

And I did not remember to take a single picture.  Not a single one.  (As an aside...I intended to take photos of food or the simple fall decorations, but I confess that I feel weird taking pictures of my guests.  I don't want people to feel uncomfortable.  My friends know that I blog, and I don't want them self-conscious about me lurking around with my camera, probably fearing that they'll end up on the World Wide Web with a mouthful of food.  How do you, my fellow bloggers, handle that?)

So no one went home hungry (or fearful of seeing their faces on the WWW), and I believe that we grew in love one for another as we shared in fellowship.

On Sunday...I overslept.  Yes, I did.  Even with that "extra" hour of sleep that I was supposed to get, and even with all of the last minute things I needed to do to get ready for the birthday party.  Uggh.

(Again) back to "how we pulled it off"...

Thankfully, our hospitality IS a family affair, and everyone pitched in to make the house presentable and unload the dishwasher and set the party table and so on.  Believe it or not, by the time we went to church, things were again under control.  

We had another easy peasy menu.  Kati had requested tacos and cilantro-lime rice...wonderful, because everything could be prepared at the last minute.  Just what we needed for party #2.  We girls cooked and chopped.  Ron went on a mission of mercy (to Food Lion) when I discovered that we had no limes.

Mom brought a pretty bouquet of balloons.  

I forgot the music (again).  

I did take pictures.  Lots.  

This time we used the white dishes.  They were a perfect fit with the lovely napkins (bright aqua blue with white polka dots) that Kati had chosen back in August (she is not the procrastinator).  We also used the white pedestal for the birthday cheesecake, chocolate with raspberry sauce.  

It was another great day.  A time to cherish Kati.  A time to enjoy being together.  A time to take the time for one another.  

So, it was possible to have two gatherings in one weekend.  It was possible by keeping it simple, not striving for perfection, accepting help from others...and just doing it.  

I wouldn't want to do it every weekend, but it was well worth the effort!  


  1. What a wonderful blessing both events were!

    Easy, do-able, preparation!

    Hats off to You!


  2. How wonderful! Lots of great activity and hospitality at your place. Isn't it lovely when it all comes together so well? No wonder you slept in!

  3. Good for you! (Interestingly, we're hosting our small fellowship group tomorrow night and having soups, too - 3 soups, bread with oil dips, crackers & I'm supplying some pumpkin rolls for dessert (and coffee, etc. of course).

    It is a busy day as I'm meeting a friend for coffee in the morning & we'll attend a come & go retirement open house for a friend in the afternoon. The house will be picked up - but not "clean" if you know what I mean :)

  4. Even non-procrastinators needs lists with things to do and when to do them! :-) We are hosting FIVE events in the next two weeks-- 3 different groups for dinner (including Dad and Bekah tonight), a single friend for dessert, and Brian's family's big Thanksgiving get-together. I have multiple lists going right now.

  5. Hi Cheryl. What a wonderful thing to do! Your church is very blessed to have such a creative and gracious hostess, even one that does forget the music. :)
    And your beautiful Katie is nineteen! I'm always blessed to see the pictures of her with her family. Her sweet spirit shines through and you can tell her I said so, please.
    The change in the weather here gives me hope that I will settle into my old communicative self again. I miss my daily visits.

    By the way, I noticed that after your weekend marathon party you waited until Friday to post.. significant? Just curious. ;)

    Blessings, Debbie

  6. Happy Birthday to Kati! She's such a beautiful girl and a wonderful reason to celebrate. These soup dinners sound marvelous.

  7. I love a soup supper ... and sometimes we have several soups to choose from ... it is a good do-ahead.

    I've enjoyed reading your hospitality posts. Sounds like you had a busy but memory-making weekend! You are right about when everyone helps!


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