There are book clubs and there are book clubs and then there is the Chatty Chicks Culture Club where books are books and women were born to chat!
Last night our club met to talk on The Butterfly Cabinet and we had an optional pre-meeting cookie exchange which was totally worth the time I spent trying to shake sticky marshmallow no-bake cornflake wreath cookies off my finger that I picked to do cause I thought they would be way easier than baking. HA! Hideous! The laugh was totally on me in the end because I ended up making three kinds of fudge (a big hit by the way) and a batch of gingerbread cookies (also quite popular) in lieu of the aforementioned still-gummed-up-in-my-hair-and-other-private-places-wreath-cookies.
We had so many wonderful cookies! I’ve never done a cookie exchange before, in fact, I don’t think anyone had. But Lori investigated options on how to do it, put together a recipe book of everyone’s cookies(!) for each of us, and we all took home a huge stack of a variety of cookies instead of just one kind. I loved that there were no repeats on what people brought and that they were all delish! We even got to vote for best looking, most sinful and better than it looked. Amy’s darling and really tasty reindeer cookies stole the show and won best looking. Michelle’s decadent cream wafer cookies ran away with the most sinful and Kinga’s super yummy chocolate peppermint masterpieces took the last category. Honestly though, everyone’s cookies rocked the house on the delish barometer.
So we mixed and mingled and stuffed ourselves on homemade cookies, yummy appetizers like homemade salmon spread, sage popcorn and cheesy bread and sipped cheery glasses of dubonnet and champagne to start the evening.
Now you’ve seen my Christmas decor pics earlier and in case you were wondering on all the butterflies, well, book club explains it. Since I was hosting and the book was on butterflies and I like a theme for my decor every year, butterflies seemed a natural. And since I really love love love when you can carry through a theme and put a little surprise into the evening for your guests, then looking for ways to add butterflies into every little thing became my quest.
So, we had butterfly suckers, butterfly gummies, butterflies you could paint from scratch, butterfly crackers, butterfly temporary tattoos and even butterfly masks! Do you love the pics of everyone? They were fabulous masks that helped everyone look quite “buttery!” I loved having every one styling their pretty masks. Warmed my heart and made me want to bust out in an operatic song straight out of “Madame Butterfly” of course!
As for the book, well, frankly it was mostly panned by the majority of those who read it. It’s dark and features one of the worst mothers ever. However, those of us who did like it enjoyed the prosaic writing by Bernie Magill and found it left haunting kinds of “heavy” questions about life in general. I might not recommend this book but I would definitely read another book by this author.
We are tossing off the heavy stuff though for our next round and going straight for some “smut!” Yep, this is not going to be your literary book club. No oh no. Give us something light and slutty and we are here to talk about it! : ) We selected “Good in Bed” by Jennifer Weiner as our next read. (Glen promptly claimed it was his “biography.” oh brother. : ) )
I do have to come back to how special our group is. We held a canned food drive and I have three good size containers to deliver from 16 women! Plus we got a big box of coats put together for one of the members coat drives at her work. And our name fits us really well! We are not a quiet group! I like best that we are all pretty much, really different but somehow at the same time all the same. And I like the very best that everyone makes time for this special activity that is about the importance of connection really at its core. We may ebb and flow, we may morph over time, we may even end sooner than I like if too many things pull too many away, it is what it is, but every chance I get, and while we got it, I am relishing these special times with this special group. So fun!
The whole darn thing leaves me warm and fuzzy and I just know that good feeling is going to last for weeks. Thanks my chatty chicks!
Happy October! The best month of the year. Of all 12 months, I love October best of all and I’ve dolled up the house in its fall finery to celebrate.
I got busy with a last burst of energy when I got home today and worked on getting the house cleaned up from last night’s first meeting of our book club which I thought was so much fun. Then we hit a local restaurant for an impulsive dinner out with our good friend Scott. And now, there’s just nothing much on the evening agenda. I’m thinking that I’ll sip this glass of wine for awhile and then mosey on over to the hot tub in a bit for a nice long soak. And that pretty much will end this day.
But back to the book club for just a minute. We had such a lovely group of women of many ages gather for some chatting and dining and drinking and book reviewing. I think we ended up with 22 of us getting together for a gab fest really. They almost all ran off at the end of the evening before I could share what our next book was going to be and the name everyone selected so I’ll share it here first (Anita – you’ll be one of the very first to know! : ) ) The next book is The Butterfly Cabinet by Bernie Magill and the name, well, look at these choices and make a guess and then I’ll let you know in a post later this weekend! : )
This slow paced evening might, in fact, match the plans for the weekend – not a whole lot going on actually. Tomorrow I plan to drag Glen around to a few places looking for a platform bed with drawers underneath it for our bedroom and we’ll likely score a nice lunch somewhere and then spend the afternoon watching college ball. And on Sunday we have a fun activity planned. For the first time since I was in my teens, we’re going to go hit some balls at the driving range with my dad. He’s been wanting us to get out and play some golf with him and you really have to start at the beginning. So Glen, Tea and me are going “clubbing” with dad on Sunday. Watch out all of Everett! Nowhere is probably safe!
I’ve been holding out on you and haven’t shared that a bunch of us are joining together and starting a book club! Our first meeting is tomorrow night at my place and I’m really excited about it. I mean who wouldn’t be excited to have 20 plus amazing women come together for any reason but to talk on books is like a bit of a dream come true for a reader.
We have nothing but fun on our agenda for this first meeting and top of the list is getting to know each other. That’s one of my personal biggest goals with this is to get to meet some cool new women and spend more time with the cool women I already know and love. I think both are going to be possible since there are several young women on our invite list I don’t really know well. Plus a pile I know real well and a smattering in between that I know but don’t know if you know what I mean. : )
I’m keeping our menu super simple with appetizers, soup and dessert and an overall apple theme.
My menu is:
Bookclub Bubblers (as a celebration greeting at the door. I’m a champagne girl. If it’s a celebration, or should be, then champagne needs to be on the menu!)
Mulled apple cider
Wines and water
Raw veggie platter with dip
Crackers and cheese
Party popcorn at discussion tables
Tortellini soup with rolls and breadsticks
Apple Crisp (mom’s bringing this and it’s not-to-be-missed!)
Berry Crisp (by me from a mix but it looks good too)
Salted caramel bark (from Costco)
So, we’re going to be eating, drinking, mixing, yakking, voting, oh, and talking about the book of course! We all read The End of Everything and it was a tough one for me. Pretty tough topic about the friendship of two 13-year-old girls and what happens when one of them disappears. But I think it actually might be a great book for a book club discussion because there were a lot of things eluded to in the book but not necessarily spelled out. It will be interesting to see what opinions we get on what everyone thought was going on. Plus, we’ll be voting on two things tomorrow night – our club name and what book to read next. I’ll be bringing you that breaking news along with a bunch of pics, naturally, on Friday!