My (almost) Mother-in-Law insisted on hosting an evening gathering to sweetly celebrate our quickly approaching nuptials. Instead of a full-blown bridal shower, we had an intimate gathering fueled by sugar and bubbles.
By the time we say “I do,” we will have spent a little over a year celebrating our engagement. Celebrations have included two absolutely lovely showers hosted by my Chicago friends and sister respectively. I had a festive bachelorette party and countless mini-toasts with Ben. This was truly more than I ever imagined, but then my MIL came to me with a suggestion. She would host a no-gift, intimate gathering of friends, neighbors and family from Michigan. We have visited his home town several times, but meeting everyone has been tricky. Ben’s Mom debated over brunch, lunch or dinner and then settled on an evening dessert/cocktail party. While I typically prefer salty over sweet, I liked the idea of a small, casual gathering. Most of all, it would give me the opportunity to get to know their side of the family a bit better.
The guests arrived at 7p, welcomed with a caramel apple mimosa crafted by his sister (recipe below!) The dining table was lined with fine china, silver and platters of cookies. Wine was chilled over ice and there were pretty little coffee cups stacked up next to a carafe of hot coffee in the corner. There was a no gift policy (phew) but I did leave with a few flower arrangements. One made by Ben’s Father’s cousin, an assortment of hydrangeas in an adorable DIY pumpkin vase, a custom arrangement from the local florist and a couple of congratulatory mums just because. I was so appreciative of the little lovely gestures.
Caramel Apple Mimosas
- Pour caramel into a small dish. Pour cinnamon sugar into another small dish. Dip champagne flutes into caramel to rim glass, then dip in cinnamon sugar until coated.
- Pour 1/4 cup apple cider and 2 ounces caramel vodka into each flute and top with bubbly.
- Garnish with an apple slice before serving.
Dessert time came with one rule, try a little bit of everything! I didn’t capture all of the photos I’d hoped to as my time was focused on mingling with the ladies. The assortment was impressive to say the least, and all homemade! Meringues, peanut butter chocolate oatmeal cookies, cheesecake cherry bites, pumpkin chiffon pie, chocolate cream pie, apple and almond bars. While I’d skip dessert in favor of salty or cheese on a normal day, the mix of classic treats and savory sweets was fun and unique.
The party was special & sweet. Most of all I appreciated spending time with everyone who I otherwise wouldn’t have had the chance to meet before the big day. Now I’ll be able to look out into the room full of our guests, with familiar faces looking back at me. It doesn’t hurt that I shared a pretty significant sugar buzz with about a dozen of them, either.
Are you a traditionalist or do you like fresh spins on classic wedding events?
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