Thursday, December 29, 2011

Ladies Christmas Dinner 2011

Each year, the women at our church host a Christmas Dinner (for women only). This event is so fun and we look forward to it every year. We usually have 12-15 hostesses who are each in charge of their own table of 6-8 women.

The hostess gets to decorate her table as simply or elaborately as she pleases (as long as it all fits!) and it is great fun! The dinner is buffet style, but each hostess provides her own dishes at each place setting for her guests to use. No paper plates here!

My theme this year was A Partridge in a Pear Tree :)

I got the idea for the gilded pears from Martha.  I bought that tiered stand from Hobby Lobby last year for about $7, I think, on sale.  Bought some nicely colored pears and "gilded" them with this stuff and a small paint brush.

The dinner is catered and always great. The hostess also usually provides some little ornament or gift for each of her guests and some yummy candy for a treat during the entertainment.

Mmmm..............Chicken stuffed with mushrooms

Nicely done, Lia!

My gift for my guests this year was a glittery "partridge".

I picked them up at Michael's for $1.49 each (on sale) and dressed them up with some brown organza ribbon and a few pearls.

Strawberry Shortcake for dessert!

Yummy salad with feta, cranberries, and walnuts with a raspberry vinaigrette.

Speaking of the entertainment, our Women's Ministry coordinates the program and this year was all about Christmas Memories. Even our Hispanic Ladies' Bible Study participants played a part this year! It was fun and touching to hear the stories told.

This year made my third year to hostess a table. I had been so nervous in years past that I couldn't pull it off that I didn't hostess. Then, I just decided to dive in and it was the best fun! What a nice, creative outlet for decorating for Christmas using fancy, fragile things I could not leave out at home right now because of my children's young ages.

Here's my table from my first year:

Fun hurricanes I made from Dollar Tree items (ideas all over blogland).
They cost $3 to make!!!

My first year to hostess, my mom, grandma, and sister were guests at my table. We have now turned that into tradition. Hey, for my family, this is about the only Christmas event we get to go to!

Me with Mom and Granny

My sister, Susie with Mom and Granny

So much fun! I wish more churches would do something similar for their Women's Ministry as it is a wonderful opportunity for fellowship and celebration of Jesus' birth!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Meet Oliver + S........

I was recently introduced to a neat pattern company. Oliver + S has some of the most charming clothing patterns for children I have ever seen! Liesl designs with an eye for vintage feel, quality construction, and comfort!

I downloaded the pattern Jump Rope Dress yesterday and have been happily working on this lovely little dress for my daughter.

This is the fabric I am using for View A (the pattern cover above)

View B (which I realize I can't find an illustration for):

So far, so good! The instructions seem very clear to me, with lots of little illustrations. There is also a forum on the Oliver + S website if you have questions. The ladies there are knowledgeable and very willing to help out based on their experience with these patterns.

I already know I will be sewing more with Oliver + S from here on out. My only regret is that I didn't find them when my daughter was younger! She's almost 10 and I know my days of dressing her in darling clothes are numbered. In another couple of years I'm sure she will become more opinionated about what she will want to wear and I'm almost positive it will not include much gingham :(

I'll update with the finished product in a couple of days!