My husband and I had a party at our house this weekend.
This is extremely out of the ordinary. We're just not party throwing people. Sure, we've done all the birthday parties and the occasional shower hosting or massive playdate gathering. But a real party - like those people that throw annual holiday parties or Halloween bonfires or massive cookouts with themes and roasted pigs? Not us.
It's not that we don't like parties. Au contraire, I love me a good party. It's just that I'm not good at throwing parties. I'm not good at decorating or cooking hor d'oeuvres or coming up with cute little party themes. The few times we have hosted things, I have been so stressed out about it that I haven't had all that much fun.
But for some reason, I've had this inkling to have a big to-do. If for no other reason than to get all of my favorite people in the DC area under one roof, for just one evening. Because how often does that happen? We all have our favorite people gather at our bachelorette parties, weddings, baby showers, etc. Then we have kids and they get older and those big gathering stop happening, and before you know it, weeks turn into months turn into years and you feel more and more isolated.
So I really wanted a party.
When we moved into our new house in January, it seemed the perfect opportunity to do a housewarming, but we dragged our feet a bit. Then a friend of ours suggested having a "Stock the Cellar" party. What's that, you ask? It's a party where you invite people to your home and demand that they bring you alcohol.
Because our new house happens to have one of these:
Don't get too excited - it's not a real wine cellar - there's no temperature control or anything fancy. It's basically just a closet with some wood shelves for wine. But still - if you got it, you might as well stock it!
So we planned a party. We invited our closest DC area friends, and around 60 came. And, we got it catered. By the best most amazing catering duo who allowed us to have a blast at our own party. They brought and set up the food (which was all awesome). They also set up a bar with beer and wine and some of the best tequila cocktails I've ever had. They even cleaned up when it was over. For our part, our only job was to clean ahead of time, figure out a music playlist, get the kids to sleep, and enjoy ourselves.
It was one of the best nights I've had in a very long time.
With a couple of exceptions, all of our close DC friends were there. And I realized half way through the night that between all of them, all of my life phases were represented. In attendance were my sister, a friend from high school, a friend from college, a friend from my days in London (who randomly lives a mile from me now), friends from law school, friends from my law firm days, my "mom" friends, and even my blogging friends.
The whole thing left me feeling festive, happy, and loved. Because when we moved here to DC, a little over 8 years ago, it was essentially on a whim. We only knew a handful of people, and since then, we really have built our own village. And I LOVE my village! So much. So it was about time that we put forth the expense and effort to get our whole village together, for one night.
I spent Saturday night surrounded by so many awesome people.
In doing so, I stayed up way too late. And drank way to much. I think when I was going to sleep it was in the 1's, which spells pain for the next day. Oh so much pain.
But no - Sunday was Mother's Day! Which means it was the one day in the entire year that I am guaranteed the right to sleep in as long as I want! Could I have planned this any better?
I slept until 9:45 am - the latest I have slept in years. I felt well rested - I suppose this is why I never experienced hangovers in college - perhaps because there weren't three little people screaming in my face at 6:45 EVERY GODDAMN MORNING.
I went downstairs only to realize that everyone was gone, out running errands. I marveled at the silence, and the fact that I had the entire house to myself, even for only 15 minutes or so. And I surveyed the bounty left by the guests...
If you think that's impressive, just look at the massive improvement in our wine closet:
Now that we have all of this wine, I am thinking we should throw another party (maybe on a smaller scale).
Because really, isn't there so much to celebrate? I think so.
(I just need to tie it to some event/holiday to ensure that I can sleep in again. That was key.)
[Writer's note - Yeah, so that whole Everyday in May thing... That didn't happen. I'm sorry. I had good intentions, but when it comes to blogging or sleep, sleep tends to win.]