Posts Tagged ‘party’

On a recent Wednesday night, I ended up in a field west of Concord, watching a juggler toss pins into the air, munching on kettle corn, and marveling at a magician’s card tricks and a mime’s skill at making balloon animals.

No, I wasn’t at a carnival or a circus – not a normal circus, anyway. This was the pre-launch preview party for Erin Morgenstern’s debut novel, The Night Circus. Appropriately, it was held in a circus tent.

Several dozen bookish folks from all over New England – bloggers, booksellers, reviewers, a librarian or two, and lots of folks who tweet about books – had been invited to the event by the area Random House sales reps. (Lots of people came from Boston and Cambridge, of course, but there were people from Rhode Island and even upstate New York.) And it was so fun.

We munched on hors d’oeuvres (and later, a selection of decadent desserts) and watched the performers do their thing, and then listened to an audio clip of the book’s beginning (read by Jim Dale, now famous for the Harry Potter audiobooks). I stuck close to Dawn all night, since I didn’t really know anyone else, and since I felt a little out of the loop among all these folks who live and breathe books at their day jobs. (I live and breathe books too, but my day job mainly involves webpages and emails.)

My gorgeous ARC of The Night Circus (which Erin graciously signed for me) has been sitting on my coffee table ever since, tantalizing me (I had a few other books to finish before I picked it up). I’m planning to take my trip to the circus this week. I’ll let you know how it goes, and meanwhile: can you guess what animal our mime friend is bringing to life with these balloons?

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As you may remember, I turned 27 a couple of weeks ago. J and I celebrated with a dinner date in the North End – pasta and some yummy pastries – but I wanted to have a party too, a chance to gather with friends and play games and laugh. It’s what our House 9 crew did in college, what our Abilene crew did every time it was someone’s birthday. And I miss having people over to our house – it’s been a rare thing so far in Boston, since we’re still getting settled and our friends are scattered all over the city.

So we threw a party. A Tex-Mex festival, actually. With chicken burritos and my guacamole, Nate’s homemade salsa and lots of tortilla chips. Daniel brought seven-layer dip, Shanna brought queso and everyone brought chips. And Abi made decadent chocolate cupcakes, frosted with cream cheese icing, each one topped with a single raspberry. (She knows me so, so well.)

It was a curious but wonderful mix of old friends and new ones, friends from Abilene and friends from Boston. It felt, as Abi said, like old times in Abilene – and yet it felt new too.

We missed the rest of our party group from Abilene – Kelsey and Jake and Sarah, Bailey and Luke and Bethany, Lawson and Morgan and Drew, and others. But it was such fun to have Daniel and Isaac and Shanna, and Beth and Scott, with us.

Everyone hung around the table, dipping chips into the four dip bowls and talking and laughing. We devoured burritos and chips and cupcakes and Beth’s chili-powder-laced brownies. We played Encore (always a gamble with a new group of people) and sang crazy song lyrics and hooted with laughter. And when it was over, I had that warm glow that comes from spending time with good friends.

We’re still adjusting to life here in Boston, still finding our rhythm and settling in. But I am so glad we’re already finding our people. We brought some of them with us, of course – but it’s great to be living the Boston life together, and making new friends along the way.

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+1 strand icicle lights, festooned around the lounge with Sellotape (courtesy of Lizzie & Dave)

+1 fragrant 4-foot spruce tree, decked with blue and silver ornaments and topped with an angel

+3 dozen chocolate chip cookies (homemade by Katie)

+Several dozen mince pies (homemade by Jo)

+Jam tarts, Pringles and assorted other goodies

+1 big pot of cider

+16 ACU-in-Oxford students, and Jacque

+Lizzie, Jo and Katie

Put all ingredients into a small dollhouse in the centre of Ablett Close, off the Cowley Road. Mix well and add a healthy dose of Christmas music – from swing to pop to instrumental.

Enjoy. 🙂

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