It's high time you met SMK, aka Sister Mary Katherine. Go back one post if you want the background info. This woman is amazing, and I have a ton of stories to tell, but I'll start with some basics that will give you a good picture.
SMK knows how to throw a party. She does it ALL the time, despite having a house full of day care kiddos all day. She'll host our wine club
at the end of a long day, knowing she has to get up at the butt-crack of dawn to receive those kids early. She's a great cook, and will always whip up something really special for those occasions, even when those of us who have more time bring take-out or stuff to throw in the oven. She takes the time to make us feel special. Crusted ahi tuna, anyone?
She also throws a damn good direct-sales party. You know, Pampered Chef, Longaberger, Tastefully Simple, Party Lite, Lia Sophia jewelry...you name it, she'll host it. What makes her parties like this a don't miss (because c'mon, we'd usually rather miss them...and this is coming from Tina who sold Longaberger nine years and Mary Kay three...) is the unique gift she gives each of us as the party starts.
When it's time for introductions and the customary consultants, “And please tell us how you know SMK when you introduce yourself,” she'll do it HER way. We have that in common. Do it OUR way. After all, it's the right way, isn't it?
She climbs up on her big hearth and will go around the room, introducing each guest and saying something she loves about that person. (By the way, she loves me because there's ALWAYS wine at my house. Usually in a box, but nonetheless she can always find a glass or two. Damn, I still feel bad about when I was boxless one night...hate to disappoint...) Starting the party this way produces a lot of laughter and ice-breaking and is the perfect way to make your guests feel special.
The best party of the year though is The Seafood Boil. She comes from a big family, and at the end of the summer they all invite their friends to this combined family amazing feast. Tables are covered in paper, tents are set up, big pots of seafood and all the sides are thrown onto the table and people step up and dive in. What could be better? The night approaches slowly, the little kids play on the playground, the big kids play soccer, or they play with the little kids (a highlight if you're a little kid and it's been fun watching OYT (see previous post for who that is) graduate from grateful little kid to big kid whom the littles adore.)
This year I couldn't go. Broke my heart. Too sick. She said she'd save me some. She didn't just do that though. She invited me to her house full-o-kids during their nap-time and set it all out JUST like if I'd been at the party. “The seafood boil is not a solitary event. You're coming HERE.” So I feasted, and tried not to cry in gratitude and joy as I enjoyed my mussels, shrimp, clams, crab, crawfish, corn on the cob, fingerling potatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, crusty french bread, plenty of butter for dipping, and let's not leave out the octopus “uglies” (which are really tasty and there's usually plenty because of seafood wimps) and wine, which she also set out for me.
Wouldn't you want your own SMK? I'm glad I have mine. Thanks for the feast, and all the love you show with all your efforts for your friends.