Shower.

I co-hosted a bridal shower for my friend last Saturday. The groom's mother was the other cohort in this event, as well as a cool person I met at a gathering a couple of weeks ago. I am proud that it went off without a proverbial hitch and that the bride was happy. That was my biggest concern--that the bride had a wonderful experience because she deserves it. She's a lovely person and a class act, so it was a pleasure and a privilege to do this for her. Here are some recipes from the shower that may help if you are ever interested in hosting a shower or soiree: Food Thank God for Steve. He made spaghetti. It's easy and not expensive. We served baguettes and a salad. We also had red wine (merlot) and sparkling red grape juice for the under-21 crowd and the non-drinkers. A great hor d'oeuvre: orange and honey delight. Peel oranges or cut them up into slices. Pour wildflower honey (We prefer Laney Honey from North Liberty) all over the oranges. Sprinkle almonds over the oranges. You may opt to have a side dish in case there are people who can't eat almonds. My mother brought back this recipe from Hawaii. I thought of her as we made them. Also, you may opt to place toothpicks in the orange slices because it can get sticky. Another tasty hor d'oeuvre: Apricot, Cheese, and Walnut delight. Place an apricot, a cube of cheese, and a walnut together (toothpicks help.) The taste is wonderful. Pepperjack and mozzarella cheese are particularly tasty. Ice Ice Baby, or Ice to Meet You Ice cubes: I had more fun with ice cubes. I tried to find ice cube trays in the shape of flowers, but better yet, I found cubes in the shape of shark fins! So there were a few sharks swimming in the champagne bowl. Flower trick with ice cubes: find edible flowers at the store (or better yet, grow your own.) Fill water halfway up. Place flowers in water. Then fill water to the top. Freeze. Then you have pretty frozen floral ice cubes. A friend did this with pansies at my bridal shower. Ice cubes in the shape of sharks may be found at Bed, Bath, and Beyond. Punch I learned this trick from a colleague at the library. Two cans of Dole Pineapple Juice and one bottle of diet 7-up. (I substituted with Andre Spumante.) Add in ice cubes and edible flowers (optional) and you have a fabulous punch. Shower Gift for Your Guests This idea was lifted from another bridal shower I attended. My cohort painted flower pots and we put in African Violets and dirt. It made for a beautiful giveaway for each guest. Shower gifts from games: Tiny bottles of Laney Honey and decorative wine stoppers.

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