Saturday, March 21, 2009

The Helping Hands of Friends

Last Evening we hosted a dinner party  for a group of friends from our church. Some of our guests  brought the salads, breads, and desserts. I did the meat, two potato dishes, and a roasted vegetable dish for 30 . I am in my element with this type of thing so my day had gone pretty well by doing what prepping I could,  pre-cooking, and the tables earlier in the day. 

The last thirty minutes however was a different story. My menu, presentation, and table scape required a lot of last minute work. I had a pot of potatoes that I had cooked. It was the biggest pot I have and it was filled to the top with about 20 pounds of hot boiled potatoes. They had boiled over and had made a huge mess on the top of my stove. The stove top  WAS sparkling earlier in the day. It was time to mash the potatoes with two tubs of sour cream, butter, and cheese and I could not find my masher. I knew I had given it a new home in my kitchen just the day before and I could not remember where it was.

My last minute solution was to use my electric mixer. The beaters were not long enough to reach the bottom of the pot so you can only imagine the last minute mess I was creating on my apron-free self, the counters, the walls, and the kitchen floor.  The stove had a big boiled over cooked on spot too. I had everything hot and plated in time but I was left with a very last minute mess in my kitchen as the first guests arrived at the door. I was using my kitchen island and counters as the serving space so the mess I had created was NOT the look I was going for!

When I opened the door I saw the faces of friends and out of my mouth came "I am so glad to see some friendly faces and helping hands." Without hesitation they willingly and generously pitched right in. Some filled the sink with dishwater and washed up my cooking pans and wiped up the counters, another tackled the stove top, and others filled water pitchers and set the tables with last minute items. They pulled some quick tricks just like I would have done by quickly cleaning my counters and kitchen of unneeded items and placed them out of sight in my walk in pantry. 

Within minutes my friends had saved the day. As the evening continued so did my friends with their willing and helping hands as the tables were cleared, desserts were served, and the clean up completed.

It was a great evening with friends and it left me feeling very grateful for the new friends that I have made since moving here. I love coming together as friends with a common goal and seeing it completed. Although this time it was very last minute and unplanned the joy I experienced was just as sweet!

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