This was a lovely southern ladies' event. We hired a caterer to make what we probably would have made ourselves—tea sandwiches (open-faced cucumber, pimento and cheese, chicken salad), crab dip, fruit and cheese, spanakopita, ham biscuits with black pepper and honey. We also had a wonderful pound cake, and I believe each individual serving weighed one literal pound. And we had the coconut cake of your dreams. We served punch and coffee and tea, and there was lace and pink everywhere. My mother's favorite color is pink (her kitchen cabinets are painted pink!), so my sister, who is a floral designer by trade, had pink roses on all the tables.
We had requested the guests not bring gifts, but quite a few brought them anyway, which delighted my mother, even though she kept saying, "I said I didn't want any of you to bring me gifts. You shouldn't have." She wears a lot of scarves and wraps with her suits when she goes to church, so they gave her scarves. At least six of them in all shapes and colors—lots of pink.
My Aunt Sybel was there, too. She is my mother's sister, and her 80th birthday is today, actually, so Karen made corsages for the two of them. Sybel drove there from Alabama and stayed the night at Karen's house, and it was wonderful to see the two sisters together. After the party, we all sat at the kitchen table and listened to them swap stories from their childhood as we nibbled on leftover biscuits with honey and coconut cake—priceless.
Here are some photo highlights:
The dining room fireplace arranged with leaves from Karen's magnolia tree and gourds. She carved the one in the middle and stained the carving with dried spices.