My favourite meetups aren’t giant events with lots of pomp and photo opportunities–my favourite meetups are intimate events with lots of conversation. I feel bad whenever I realize that there was someone I didn’t get the opportunity to know. Sometimes I get so excited about seeing old friends that I forget to take enough time to meet those I don’t already know~ With a smaller group it’s easier to hold a conversation that includes everyone, come to a decision about what to do next, and generally make everyone feel welcome. That’s not to say that such a thing can’t happen at a larger event, but it takes a conscious effort to do so.
Thus I was very excited to go to a small tea party at a friend’s new apartment; she hosted the event as a housewarming. Hosting parties provides the planners with almost endless room for creativity, but it can get expensive very quickly! Doing something on a smaller scale, where you decide the guest list, allows you to do things elaborately without going broke. Fancy ingredients can be very pricey, especially if 20+ people are supposed to come…and if guests cancel at last minute you might be eating those leftover tea sandwiches for a week! If you want more control, less attendees makes it easier.
I arrived a bit too early (which I have a particular knack for), but already the table was set with china and flowers. Cucumber-mint cream cheese and plum & prosciutto sandwiches were cooling in the refrigerator while scones baked in the oven. I brought a loaf of pumpkin tea bread, which is essentially a loaf of sweet quick bread made with strong brewed tea instead of other liquids. It tastes mostly like pumpkin spice, but I like to think the tea makes it more suitable for a tea party~ Another friend brought a lovely summer salad with avocado and strawberry. My little sister brought jalapeno cheese spread, which she and my husband tried on nearly everything else on the table.
The weather was almost unbearably hot, partially because it’s summer and partially because the apartment was on the top floor of a building and lacked air conditioning. Some of my smarter friends had brought collapsible fans, while those of us who hadn’t had that foresight (aka: me) kept ducking into the air-conditioned bedroom. It didn’t prevent us from enjoying ourselves, however! It was a lot of fun to sit around the table and talk~
Eventually we decided to take a walk, so we headed out to meander around the neighborhood. I had forgotten my parasol, but my little sister kindly lent me hers. ♥ I tried to hold it to provide some shade for her, as well, although I don’t think I did a very good job…
On our walk we passed a very cute candy store: Suckers Candy! ★ I saw the penguin first, to be honest. I love penguins, so when I noticed a big penguin on the sidewalk my first reaction was to squeal, run up to it, and please-please-please-please get someone to take my picture with it. I noticed the penguin’s “Ice Cream” sign, and turned around to see a candy store!
I peeked inside to see if they had candy cigarettes, which I really love, and luckily they did! My husband was very sweet and bought them for me! ♥ Not only did I get to hug a giant penguin, I also wound up with candy! It was great~
I enjoyed walking with my friends and taking part in conversations. Eventually the heat and humidity got to be a bit much, so we ducked into an air-conditioned coffee shop. I didn’t get home until a bit late, but I had such a wonderful time! I hope that my summer is full of more of those outings~ I want to spend and enjoy time with my friends as much as possible~