Thursday, August 30, 2012

O Candy

The candy buffet at our daughter's wedding last Saturday featured Sour Patch Kids, York Peppermint Patties, Jordan Almonds, Sixlets and 40 more treats for our wedding guests. Forty may be a bit of an exaggeration, but you get the picture because you've got a picture.

The buffet, inspired by Dylan Lauren's wedding (darling shots here), was our bride's idea. All we needed were many, many glass jars, candy scoops and tongs, cellophane bags, ribbon ties and a lot of candy.

Needless to say, it was a lot of fun to take over our dining room table and rearrange (over and over) everything into some sort of candy buffet sense.

Two things happened.

One, the York Peppermint Patties, it turns out, were not "settling" in their glass tower. The father of the bride was detouring into the living room and helping himself, requiring my having to add more patties and a ferocious warning on a Post-It note.

This, more or less, worked.

Secondly, as our many guests stood in front of the tables minutes into the reception, scooping up their preferred treats, my pal, Joyce announced, "Charlie and I would like to apologize for doubting the candy bar."

You doubted the candy bar? Yet, said nothing?

I have never doubted candy in my life. 

And in case you are curious, anything sweet and sour was wiped out, including those garish orange things (sour peach slices) in the photograph above.

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups were decimated. M&Ms were next, followed by Twizzlers, Jordan Almonds, and most of the York Peppermint Patties.

Clearly, I overbought on the Hershey's Kisses (a personal fave), salt water taffy (more eye appeal than anything) and Pixie Stix (Hello? Am I the only mid-century child who loves these?).

Many thanks to Grace for creating and framing the Love is Sweet sign for the table. Perfect.

And my thanks to the cast of thousands who created bows for days on end: Marilyn, Nancy, Carol, Janice, Kathy and Betsy. I love you and your fine motor skills like crazy.

Monday, August 27, 2012


Will post more on the wedding later on, but first, I need a bit of a nap.

Happy honeymoon, you two.

Much love and happiness, always.

Thursday, August 23, 2012


Nice to know. Nice to share.

T Minus 2 days until the wedding.

All is calm. All is bright.

Best of all, the toilet is really fixed this time.


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Plumb Crazy

In that we are officially four days out from the wedding, it's been a little busy 'round our place, with bow making, cancellations, Jordan Almond gorging, and plumbing.

I can tell you are yearning for the plumbing details, so here you go:

It took us 45 minutes to understand the toilet seat assembly instructions, which were mostly pictures and questionable English. (Our three degrees clearly were not helpful in his endeavor.)

Good news: all of us can now use the downstairs bathroom.

But wait. The $8 million toilet (it's French; what can I say?) sprung a leak.

Good news: the Jumps came to the rescue this morning and not only plugged us up but reconfigured the uncooperative toilet seat. (I love men with the inside track on home repair.)

Our carpets were cleaned yesterday. Hurray! However, despite the weather being (at long last) cool and moderate, we had to turn on the air conditioning to create an arctic temperature conducive to drying the carpet.

Wearing a sweater in August? Morally bankrupt. Dry rugs? Trumps all.

One more plumbing story: the upstairs toilet must have grown jealous over the attention the French guy in the powder room was getting and decided to blow a gasket last night. It is phantom flushing every 7 minutes.
If you need me, I will be at the candy store, re-upping our supply of Jordan Almonds.

After that, Naperville Now may be a little busy getting to the church on time.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Plenty of Time

Back when I was teaching 5th graders how to get into trouble explore the Internet, I discovered a line of cartoon images called Screen Beans. They were part of Microsoft's image cache and perfect for elementary school. And they frequently made me laugh.

This one, particularly, is a favorite. A perfect image for 7 days to go before our daughter's wedding.

I'm fine. Really.

Plenty of time.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Much Better

There are transformations, and then there are transformations.

A year ago, our daughter rescued a homeless cat she would eventually name Tippy. Because he was matted in every cardinal direction, his rescuers shaved him down to the nubs, leaving a large pom pom on the tip of his tail.

Not only did he have constant bad hair days, he was born with a neurological deficit, causing him to bobble and weave through life. Navigating AJ's one-bedroom apartment was something of a challenge.

He turned out to be deaf.

Since last summer, when this video was taken, he has fluffed out and changed color.

He still bobbles, but not quite as much.

He is as sweet as the day is long.

His purr can drown out conversation.

And he pretty much keeps Oscar, AJ's enormous black and white galump of a dog, in a permanent state of alert lest Tip deliver a bobble-by chomp to his tail.

(His head was moving, so I apologize for the fuzziness.)

So, who or what have you rescued lately?

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Happy Happy

With all the hub and bub of planning our daughter's wedding, the father of the bride's birthday got a bit shuffled. Not forgotten, but discreetly set to one side. In the kindest possible way.

There was some birthday redemption to be found, however.

Good: there was golf this morning.

Bad:  tee-off was at 6 a.m.

Good/Bad: he almost got a hole-in-one.

Bad: early morning golf means an afternoon nap.

Good: there was a nap.

Better -- there were BLTs for lunch (with homegrown tomatoes and bacon, which I never cook because that stuff'll kill you.)

Best (post-chopped steak and onion dinner with fried okra on the side) news of all? Dessert.

"Tastes like an effin' Thin Mint cookie!"

Happy Birthday, hon. I'm glad that you happened upon the dessert of your childhood (and in the New! Mint flavor, no less.)

Sorry they were out of orange Nehi to wash it down.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Lots of Phlox

We are limited in what we can grow here because of an abundance of trees and beaucoup shade.

My neighbor, however, can grow just about anything, anywhere, anytime (under the same conditions).

Her entire front yard is currently abloom with phlox. Lavender, white, magenta.

This is just a narrow glimpse. (I am really getting lazy with this iPhone. My camera's upstairs. I'm downstairs. Yada yada.)

One of the fun things about Donna's yard is you just never know what's going to pop up.

Ever changing. A delight for the eye.

Sunday, August 5, 2012


Chicago has had zero rainfall this summer. Zero.

Until yesterday, of course.

Cascades of water and monsoon winds swept through just after the official First Birthday bouncy house was brought to life in the backyard.

Post-scary lightning, Zach and Grandpa performed a tandem mop-up so the bouncing could resume.

The birthday girl explored her realm.

(Gymnast toes-in-the-making.)

"There are people bouncing in here! Can we keep this thing forever?"

"Screaming encouraged. Also bouncing. Best.time.ever."

"Grandpaparazzo, I can't pose for too long. I'm needed in the scrum."

Time for cake.

Happy First Birthday, Charley.

May all your birthdays be as fun (but not as wet) as this one was.