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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Tis the Season to Be Jolly

Today I attended my fourth holiday party within the last week. Whew, I don't want to get anywhere near a scale! The first one held last Wednesday was a university staff party. I walked away from the annual raffle with two Christmas CDs. Not bad. I wasn't named Employee of the Year, but a good friend of mine was, so I am very happy about that. She's such a hard worker that she didn't even take time away from her job to attend the party and have the chance to walk onstage to receive her award. Now that's dedication!

The next party I attended was the Chicago ALDA holiday social. This was my first time to attend. I think this event is almost a rite of passage. You aren't really a member of Chicago ALDA until you've been there. Kind of like you haven't attended the ALDA national convention until you've been to the karaoke party. Members of ALDA (Association for Late Deafened Adults) will know what I mean. I've heard stories but haven't been there myself. Yet.

Anyways, the Chicago ALDA social was held on Saturday night in this beautiful Victorian home in historic Oak Park. Doesn't it just look festive and inviting?

I came with my friend Ann, another newcomer to the group. Here the two of us are posed on either side of our hostess, Mary. She told me she has been a member of ALDA for more than twenty years. Ann and I enjoyed getting to meet more of the ALDA membership. Everyone was friendly and welcoming to us. And I have to mention the food at the party was outstanding.

Ann, Mary, and me

On Sunday my family attended a banquet for our afternoon bowling league. In the photo below, Charlie and I are holding the Strawberry Pretzel Salad we brought. This dessert features a pretzel/butter crust, a layer of cream cheese, sugar, and cool whip, and a layer of strawberry jello and strawberries. We topped ours with another layer of cool whip. If you'd like the recipe, just drop me an email.

Charlie and me at the lanes. We bowl
with a father/daughter team from our church.

Below is a shot of the food table at the banquet. Yummy. We ate while we bowled which made for a mellow afternoon of competition. There wasn't much of anything left at the end of three bowling games. Do you think we burned enough calories bowling to compensate?
Potluck Bowling Banquet

Today's party was the library staff holiday luncheon. The library was closed for two hours so no one had to be on public service duty during the party. I enjoyed spending time with coworkers I seldom see due to working in different departments and on different shifts. Best of all, after my table was finished eating, we reconvened to an adjacent area with comfy chairs where one staffer serenaded us on his guitar. He played his own songs which are in a folk music type of style. I couldn't catch most of the words he sang, but I heard the guitar chords clearly. It was so relaxing.

Last year at this time, I took time off for a baking frenzy. This year I've been working and have only made one batch of gingerbread men so far. To be completely honest, my son came up with the idea and made the dough himself. I only assisted with the decorating. In comparison to last December, I was feeling pretty good about my calorie intake. Until I wrote this post, that is. Realizing just how much food I've eaten at these four parties makes me see that I'm not really ahead of last year after all. Oh well, tis the season to be jolly....and well fed.


CCAC in Action said...

Great to see the photos! And if Mary is reading here, HI MARY! A remote hug for you from Lauren.

I am leaving a comment as the founder and leader of the CCAC. If anyone is not sure what it is, get in touch, and have the best holiday season possible as well :-).

Kym said...

Looks like fun parties and great food.
Glad you are having a fun, festive season. :-)

Karen said...

It was great to see you at ALDA but wish I had sat down to yak with you more! xo

Joey @ Big Teeth and Clouds said...

You're a party animal! I have my first holiday party tomorrow and still need to do that baking frenzy thing.

Merry Christmas!