Our friends have very busy lives, and if we want to see several of them at the same time, we have to plan way in advance. A few months ago, I sent an e-mail to some of our nearest and dearest and asked them to find a date that we would all be available to get together for dinner. Miraculously, we found one, and we put the date on our calendar saying we would make plans later. A couple of weeks before the date, I sent out an e-mail to start finalizing plans. You know how you blink and suddenly you discover that you are hosting a formal dinner party at your house, but you aren’t really sure how that happened? Welcome to my world.

Now, our house has been under construction for the last several months as our master bathroom was being remodeled in a combination of professional and DIY work. My kitchen table has been unusable as I had cabinet doors laid out in various stages of attempted staining in a Texas summer. Nothing like company coming to encourage you to make a push and finish those projects! Thanks to a long weekend, I got down to it, sanding and staining the mounted parts of the cabinets that couldn’t be done outside. While staining, high on cold medicine, because naturally, I managed to get sick, I mentally created an entire comparison on how staining cabinets is like the Power Layout method of scrapbooking. I may have been reaching a stage of delirium. The problem with staining is that there is a lot of waiting because you have to wait at least 24 hours between coats. During this waiting period, I could have scrapbooked, but no. I decided that my 20-year-old rusty patio furniture needed repainting. I may not always make the wisest choices.

We’ve now hit Monday of the week of the dinner. I still needed to do a final coat of spray paint on the patio furniture, a clear coat on the bathroom cabinets, and it was back to the full-time job. Naturally, when I needed a nice easy week at work, that’s when things really get crazy. So, I found myself dealing with lots of last-minute-must-be-done-right-now urgent projects. Every minute of my week was carefully scheduled between work and dinner prep when I received a text from my sister-in-law letting me know that my twin nieces were in a little theatre show at their week-long theatre camp the morning of my dinner party. Dutiful aunt that I am, I rearranged the schedule to fit that in. After all, sleep is for the weak!

Our fancy dinner party menu included beef tenderloin. An expensive cut of meat like that deserves the good china and a formal place setting. Remember how I said that I don’t always make the wisest choices? The night before the dinner, I set my table and realized that I didn’t have place cards for this group of friends. So, there I was at 1:00 am, launching Artisan and designing place cards. Once I got them designed, I printed them on card stock, pulled out some old traditional scrapbooking tools, cut them, scored them, folded them, and placed them in the pretty ceramic flower place card holders that my mother-in-law sent home with me when we visited in June. It was a lovely finishing touch to my table and reminded me how versatile Artisan is!

The dinner party was great. The food was delicious, the company was lovely, and one of my friends even took home her place card as a souvenir. It’s always nice to have all your hard work appreciated. And if I ever need them again, all I have to do is reprint. But next time, I’ll try not to wait until the last minute!

Dana Browne

Content Used: Artistic License Bonus Bundle 2 by Seatrout Scraps; Summer Meadows Exclusive Bundle by Laura Burger; A Family Affair by Across the Pond; Font: Abbeyline

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10 Responses to Blog: Delectable Dinner by Dana Browne

  1. Jill Sterrick says:

    Love your writing Dana! You just took me right along the whole journey with you. 2 thumbs up mate! Great piece!!

  2. Viv Mauriri says:

    I love your story and it is one that I could also relate to. Every family dinner seems to end up at my place. I also have that china and love to bring it out for family and friends. Even the grandies get to use some of it and the cats get their morning treats off it too! The cats only need to hear the china rattle and they are up in their seats waiting. Those plates have a certain ring to them.

  3. Avril Lawson says:

    Wow, well done. Dana, you have boundless energy 🙂

  4. Pamela Smith says:

    It’s always worth it to be with friends!

  5. Taylor Teresa says:

    I am surprised you didn’t sleep through dinner! Impressive!

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