We bought the little farm last March, and since then we have had plenty of visits from friends and family, but because last Saturday we had family that included out-of-town relatives at the same time as our good friends, it really felt like our fist official party at our new place. If our future parties at the the farm are as much fun as this first one, we have so much to look forward to!
This party had all the best ingredients - friends and family to visit with, hot dogs and some of Joe's chickens smoked with wood from our very own apple tree, kites, adorable children, Easter egg hunts, mom's famous deviled eggs, cake (Happy Birthday Brandon!), birthday gifts, a snuggely baby, delicious salads and side dishes, butterfly nets, home brewed beer, croquet, foot ball, more beer, a campfire, overnight guests in tents, corn hole, a tractor, and some dangerous vodka punch.
Luckily, Shanna and my nieces arrived early enough to help get the Easter eggs primed with chocolate before everyone else arrived, and to take the butterfly net that I brought home from work out for a spin. And we couldn't have asked for more perfect weather!
With Brandon's help, this lovely black and yellow butterfly was finally captured in the net. I think the butterfly is pretty, but the grin with two missing front teeth is even better. As Jamie said, it's a classic look.
Jamie and Leigh borrowed extra kites from Leigh's mom, and the airplane kite was a team effort to assemble and fly. I don't think we ever got it in the air for a really long time, but even watching it try to fly was fun.
I didn't get any pictures of folks sitting in the shade of the pear tree, or photos of the food, which was definitely photo worthy. I was too busy enjoying the company to think of photos. I wish I could have captured the campfire and the amazing display of stars too. The sky was perfect for star gazing.
Even though Brandon thought I was a little crazy for having an Easter egg hunt when it wasn't Easter, I had a whole crew of adorable kids who were thinking just like me - you can't have too many egg hunts! And the kids were so good. The bigger kids shared with the littlest ones, since the youngest were more interested in opening the eggs and eating the chocolate than rushing to find more eggs.
I was only slightly worried about having nearly thirty people come to a house with no working bathroom, because a few weeks ago, Brandon and I built an out house. We built it all from scrap lumber we scrounged from the barns, and used a door that came out of the old house. We put metal roofing on that came from the front room of the house before we got the new roof, and put the composing potty that mom and I built last summer inside it. We even put a light with an extension cord to the house, just to be extra considerate of our guests. I put several rolls of toilet paper in a metal popcorn tin, and put a bag of pine shaving next to the potty to used for covering the, uh... deposits. It worked very well for a group that size, but I don't know if it could handle more than a day or two at a time.
Because our only running water it to the hydrant in the yard, we used the sink we bought at the farm auction to make a place to get water, wash hands, and do the dishes. We had to be careful not to get our shoes wet, since the water just come pouring out the drain onto the ground. I used a bucket to catch really dirty water from washing the dishes so I could pour it somewhere away in case it would attract flies or something.
In this photo you can see the outhouse and sink (ignore the scary lady sculpture behind the outhouse - if you can!). I think having such rustic accommodations made the party seem like it was at a campground. I even think it was a little nostalgic for some of the folks who remember using outhouses and outdoor sinks in other lives or at other campgrounds.
I can't wait to have another party, but maybe next time I will be living in the house, so the facilities may be slightly upgraded. Slightly.