Sister bridal shower blow-out

Sisters


Have you ever attended a double bridal shower? If not, you totally should. It’s basically as fun and exciting and overwhelming as you’d imagine, plus chock-full of desserts and other sugary goodness! Though I doubt too many other people would be crazy enough to attempt something on this scale, we rocked it. Everything went beautifully.

I may have mentioned it, oh, 120 times, but my sister and I are both brides-to-be. Because our weddings are only six weeks apart, we thought it would be too much to ask our mutual friends and family to attend two showers in a very short time period. Also, my separate shower would have had to been planned for the time immediately before or after Katie’s wedding and, well, that was a recipe for chaos.

Two of our aunts organized and spearheaded this four-hour bonanza — and they were incredible. My aunt Jacki could go into event planning because she’s just. that. good. I’m not posting photos of them because I’m not entirely sure they’d be comfortable being on The Internetz, but trust me when I say that both ladies were fantastic (and are just all-around great people).

About 55 women attended on a rainy Saturday and I was truly delighted to see all of them. Though I get nervous in crowds and generally dislike being the center of attention, I knew I’d have to put aside my anxieties to focus on enjoying the day. And I did! Having so many of my favorite people in the same room at the same time was nothing short of awesome, and I was blown away by everyone’s kindness and generosity. Katie and I couldn’t have asked for a nicer event.

Also, I’m so excited that many of my good friends now know each other! And everyone knows Spencer. He arrived towards the end and was around to see some of the exciting cookware unveiled (like Le Creuset casserole and stock pot. Wahoo!). Having never attended a bridal shower, of course, I could see he was a little overwhelmed and unsure of the whole thing . . . but he got into the spirit!

And that’s enough yakking. It’s Wednesday — and that means photos, right? Eh, well, I guess I have a few. Here I am with my mom (left) and future mom-in-law — plus opening some gifts and generally doing what a Meg does best: eating cake and participating in all sorts of sugar-fueled socializing.


With Mom and Alex

Flower centerpieces

Le Creuset

With our quilt

Cake by Grandma

Cutting the cake

Electric knife

Family laughing

Napkins


Not a bad way to spend a Saturday.


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Weekend wrap-up: D.C., books & birthdays

newseumkatie_birthdayTo say the last few weeks have been busy would be a gross understatement (gross, I tell you!). Birthday season is always action-packed, but I’ve been enjoyed every minute of it! My baby sister turned 21 last Thursday and we made a trek to the Newseum in Washington, D.C. once more to check out the history of journalism and see all the cool exhibits. We had lunch at the Elephant & Castle — a British-style pub we love — and then had dinner at Clyde’s, which was awesome. Their fantastic blondie (and the birthday girl) are pictured at right!

Saturday was my sister’s big pool party, held by her boyfriend Eric! My grandmother’s “beer cake” was a huge hit, and I’m happy to say that I only had one slice — a serious achievement for me! I loved lounging with my best friend Nichole and meeting Kate and Eric’s great group of friends. Throughout the day, I even managed to actually A) put on a bathing suit; B) get in the pool; and C) participate in pool volleyball, all while barely keeping my head above water. (Hey, I’m only 5’2″. That pool was wicked deep!) 

poolI was proud that I’d “stepped out of my comfort zone” and made strides toward becoming a new, balanced and more relaxed me. I’m heading to another friend’s pool party this weekend, and I even broke down and bought a new suit! Of course, considering it’s almost August, I had a hard time finding anything decent . . . but that’s my own fault for being so inhibited for so long, I suppose!

little_china_pigYesterday found my mom, sister and I walking around an antiques show at our old high school, and logically my eye immediately went to any old books that seemed to be hanging around. I had a vague, ridiculous notion that maybe I’d find an antique copy of one of Jane Austen’s works at a crazy low price, but that didn’t happen! What we did find was a small, worn copy of a children’s book I haven’t seen or thought of in more than a decade — The Little China Pig. First published in 1969, my grandmother would read to Kate and me as kids from a copy that belonged to my mom and aunt! I got so excited when I saw it, and for $2 our china pig came home with us.

I’ve started a collection of kids’ books for my kids — all the unborn, not-even-a-remote-twinkle-in-my-eye ones. Is that strange? I just worry that when I have my own children, all of the movies, books and toys I loved will be gone — or, you know, selling for $1,000 on eBay. I want to make sure I have items like “The Little Mermaid” (my childhood favorite) and will be able to share that with my future family. Don’t worry — my stack of “to be shared with kids” items is very small. But I’m sure it’ll start growing in earnest soon.

One of the Cheerleader Girls

Apparently, not me. Photo by Richelle Antipolo

Apparently, not me. Photo by Richelle Antipolo

Trust kids to tell you the truth about something — and everything. Whether you’re prepared for it or not.

At a family birthday party this weekend, I chatted with Isabelle, my cousin’s four-year-old niece. Quite possibly the world’s cutest and most vivacious child, Isabelle loved putting pink lipstick all over the faces of her captivated audience and wowing us with her zippy one-liners, including “Did you know Michael Jackson has a sister?” and “God doesn’t like liars.” (I swear we didn’t provoke her!)

One of the most telling, though, had to come as we all gathered around in the backyard. Isabelle was swinging with my sister and me while her aunt — my cousin Ciara — sat nearby. After putting a full face of makeup on Katie and I and declaring us her “Fashion Girls,” Isabelle surveyed her work carefully. After a few moments she made a face, jumped up and flew over to sit in Ciara’s lap.

“Where are you going?” I asked her, laughing at her suddenly-smug expression from across the yard. “Aren’t you a Fashion Girl?”

Isabelle wrinkled her little nose at me, her whole face collapsing in disdain. Ciara looked over at us, bemused, as Isabelle tossed her long ponytail over her shoulder. “Um, we’re the Cheerleader Girls,” Isabelle then announced. “And you’re not.”

Kate’s eyebrows shot straight up as she laughed, her face just as shocked as mine. “What do you mean, not a Cheerleader Girl?” she asked Isabelle, who just grinned devilishly (and adorably, I have to say).

I could feel my whole stomach trembling with laughter, remembering my high school days that were filled with just about anything but cheerleading. I was a straight theatre geek, actress in all the school plays and editor of the school newspaper. I spent my time in the dark recesses of the school auditorium, learning lines and rehearsing and playing around with friends. My long hair has been, since the dawn of time, a bit unkempt . . . mostly because no contraption or amount of hair product can make it look the way I want. When you get to know me, I’m a little loud and bossy — definitely not one to float along with the crowd. In the literary world of Megan McCafferty, I fancy myself much more a Jessica Darling than, say, a Sara D’Abruzzi or Manda Powers. And I was always good with that.

But how is that even a four-year-old knows I’m not “one of them” — not a Cheerleader Girl?

Despite the fact that Isabelle and I continued to play and she did eventually come to the Fashion Girls, there was a sudden and crisp division between us that even my “Fashionable” status couldn’t save. Just like the summer I turned fourteen and stepped into the halls as a newly-minted high school freshman, I was standing in one clique looking out once again.

I guess high school really doesn’t end — even before you get there.