Last week we threw a party to celebrate the launch of Lunch With A Girlfriend. The idea for a party started over the summer when I told a couple of close girlfriends about my idea for this website. Lunch With A Girlfriend is about giving girlfriends a chance to connect and enjoy the simple pleasure of a little girl talk just like in the days before families and the demands of family life took over. We love our families but our time with our girlfriends recharge us and give us the energy to keep marching forward. Am I right?
My girlfriends Lauren and Becky were super excited about the concept and immediately suggested throwing a party to celebrate. Their constant cheerleading in the early days kept me going. Coordinating getting the website up and running and simultaneously planning the launch party was a big undertaking but luckily the details of party planning fell into place — with more than a little help from my friends.
I feel lucky to have a supportive and giving group of girlfriends — this party never could have happened without their generosity. Lauren offered her beautiful home to host the event. With a venue in place, it was time to begin thinking about food and drinks, favors, and giveaways.
Over the summer I had reconnected with a girlfriend from my days working on Capitol Hill. Shannon and I had been part of a group of girlfriends who frequently gathered in those days. Our conversations centered around politics and our careers but almost always evolved into discussions about shared interests in fashion, beauty and the best place to get a facial. It was a fun group. But as we got older, we got married and began having children — and, well, life happened. Because I chose the stay at home mom route, my ties to the group loosened though I will always feel a special connection to these women. When we reconnect, it’s like no time has passed and we pick right up again. Those are the best kinds of friendships, aren’t they?
When I ran into Shannon at a big concert venue (of all places) we quickly caught up. I told her about my plans to launch Lunch With A Girlfriend and she announced she was working on her own blog. She had always been a talented chef and baker and she was in the process of building her own business, aptly named Anatomy of a Pineapple, to promote culinary hospitality. The name of her business suits her perfectly. Anatomy refers to the practice of explaining the structure or internal working of something. Pineapples are a traditional symbol of welcome in the South and East. Shannon wears her Texas pride on her sleeve shares her southern culinary traditions with us. She was famous in our circle of friends for bringing a ham ball to every party. Don’t be fooled by the name — it’s delicious.
For Shannon, cooking and baking is her expression of love. I asked her if she would mind helping with my launch party. Without hesitating she jumped right in and took on the arduous task of creating the menu and preparing all of the food. How lucky am I to have such a generous and giving friend? And, she knocked it out of the park. She is not a professional caterer but that is certainly in her wheelhouse.
The Signature Drink and Finishing Touches
My girlfriend Erika has always impressed me with her knack for entertaining. It comes very naturally to her and you can tell she truly enjoys it. For her, entertaining comes from the heart and her Peruvian culture is usually intertwined — whether it be sharing her native cuisine or introducing friends to a favorite drink. When we were designing our cocktail menu I immediately knew the Chilcano would have to be our signature drink. If you haven’t had one before, check out my post on it here. Erika immediately jumped in to help with the finishing touches of party planning too: menu cards, flowers, and a candy bar are among her many contributions. She was diligent in keeping me on task too.
When we were brainstorming how to introduce the concept of Lunch With A Girlfriend to the community we wanted to offer a fantastic group of giveaways to our supporters. My girlfriend Lindsay jumped in and undertook the task by leveraging her connections within the community to gather some door prizes for our guests. A special thanks to South Block Juice Company, Xtend Barre, and Milk + Honey Skincare Studio for their generous contributions.
The party was a superfun way for me to share the concept of Lunch With A Girlfriend with friends old and new. I think everyone had a great evening. From what I’ve seen on social media, a few of us came away with new girlfriends as well. Nothing makes me more happy. Having a supportive group of girlfriends can make all the difference in your outlook. I’m lucky to be surrounded by some of the best. I couldn’t have gotten this far without them.
I look forward to growing and connecting with you. Thanks for your support friends.
Photography by Rodney Mitchell
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