Retirement Party Time!

So, finally, I can share with you the details of what was keeping Tim and I super busy recently, outside of home stuff. Over the weekend, we got to throw a party, celebrating the retirement of Tim’s amazingly accomplished and talented mom, Sandy. Tim and I love throwing gatherings, because it ends up tapping into some of our skill sets that we dig busting out (at least I do). Want invitations for your party? Oh, I’ll go so overboard that I’ll design you a motif for every conceivable paper good. (I didn’t for Sandy’s party, but maybe sometime I’ll tell you about my friend’s bridal shower I helped throw, or my sister’s baby shower. I have a history, is what I’m saying, I just don’t have an excessive amount of pictures documenting said history.) Need to figure out some logistics? Tim is your guy, and then some. Oh, you’re looking for homemade food? We’ve been known to commit ourselves to bonkers menus over multiple days of entertaining. (Case in point: I think we did more cooking than sitting over Christmas when my parents were here last year. But dang, that from-scratch green bean casserole was totally worth it.) Details? We love ’em.

Sandy has had an incredible career that her kids respect and admire the heck out of (we all do, really), so the chance to really honor her and all she’s done was super-fun and meaningful. Tim and his siblings were the driving force behind Sandy’s retirement party, with some valuable help from other members of the family. Tim asked if I’d think about the decorations, which I jumped all over, having just finished up the last-minute rush of the bridal shower and always loving to throw myself into a new project immediately after the previous one. After brainstorming with some friends, I had a solid idea of what I wanted to do. I’ll be breaking down the major projects I took on over the next couple of days, including lessons I learned about the materials I worked with. I’ll also talk a little about the very first carrot cake I ever baked and why maybe squeezey-tubes of decorating icing are not ideal. In the meantime, I’ll leave you with some pictures from the weekend.

Tim and his dad rehearse songs for entertainment. Steve wrote one original song and rewrote the lyrics to “Fire and Rain” for the kids to serenade Sandy with. I have spent many, many hours in this room, and I might have internalized the fabric of that couch, which will come up in my projects, though it was not consciously chosen as such.

One of my nephews is very into origami cranes, so he made this strand that we used as decoration, and a large crane for the kids to sign with congratulations.

A busy kitchen full of family and food is a familiar sight at the lake house. (I am aware that this picture is so wonky, but I’m practically allergic to my camera’s flash unless strictly necessary to capture anything at all, so weirdly-exposed pictures with lots of movement are often the norm on my memory card.)

Tim put together a wide-ranging slideshow of Sandy’s life, with the help of his sister and his dad. It was not a planned “activity” for people to sit around and watch it after dinner, but that happened. People just love to look at pictures.

Some fierce games of ping-pong also added to the entertainment.

A bonfire (which included lots of guitar-strumming and singing) was a great way to wind down the party.

Back soon with actual decorations (none of which made it into any of these shots).


8 comments on “Retirement Party Time!

  1. […] first idea I came up with when Tim asked if I would do decorations for Sandy’s retirement party was a chalkboard for all of the guests to sign, like a guest book. I liked the idea of making […]

  2. Sandy Burgener says:

    Kate –
    You did an incredible job of decorating — tasteful, fun, and so appropriate to the lake house. I could not have asked for or expected more.

    You and Tim make an awesome team!

  3. […] next project I tackled for Sandy’s retirement party was closely related to the chalkboard that I made. I had seen a few homemade dry erase boards on […]

  4. […] working on decorative and interactive projects for Sandy’s retirement party was super enjoyable, I figured they were not exactly what Tim had in mind when he asked me to do […]

  5. […] switch gears a little bit and talk cake. When discussing the menu for Sandy’s retirement party with Tim, I asked if there was a dessert planned, or he wanted me to bake something. Tim said that […]

  6. […] one last post about the decorations for Sandy’s retirement party, and then I swear, we can all go on with our lives. I saved this one last, because I wasn’t […]

  7. […] dad folded paper cranes to hang in their garage, a strand of which we’d used to decorate for Sandy’s retirement party. Once I got to thinking about origami decorations, I wondered if I could make the letters out of […]

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