Saturday, March 16, 2013

Hosting Prom Night Dinner

My husband is the president of the Young Men's organization at our church.  For prom, he made an offer to the boys.  If any of them got up the gumption to ask a girl to the dance, he'd make dinner.

As of a few days ago, we'd had no takers.  We weren't sure if that was because none of them were going or because they had other dinner plans.  Either way, it was fine.  Then on Wednesday, one of our seniors asked Lyle if the offer was still available.  Lyle said it absolutely was.  The young man wondered if a group of 14 would be too much.

Gulp.

But Lyle was undeterred.  He planned his menu and went shopping the next day.  Mercifully the group of 14 shrunk down to 6, which was perfect.

While Lyle handled the menu, I decorated.  I thought a vintage prom theme would be fun and easy.  I already had frames up in the room, I'd just swap out the ancestor pictures for prom pictures that I found on the internet.


 I quickly zeroed in on the 1950's photos as my favorites. 


They were the most glamorous,


the most elegant,


 the most romantic.


Although I'll be the first to admit that the 1960's made me smile.


This old window frame usually holds more ancestor photos but I traded those out for more prom pictures.  
Then I had a thought.

What if perhaps, I called some of the parents of the kids I knew would be at my house?


And what if they were to send me some of their own prom pictures?

And what if their kids had no idea?

My favorite part of the night was seeing our prom-goers look at the pictures when they first got here and they'd be pointing out cute dresses or hairstyles (the girls) or saying not much of anything (the boys) and then they each had a moment when their mouths fell open and they shrieked, "Is that my DAD?"  or "Is that my MOM?"  

For one young man, his parents were high school sweethearts and went to prom together.   

One girl said, "That's my Dad, but who's THAT?"


We spent many hours on the prep work, 


but in the end it was lovely.


We curtained off the kitchen and the three youngest were once again our valiant wait staff.


We were lucky that our sweet Lucy was part of the group eating at our house,


looking so beautiful on her first prom.



I felt for her date, who not only had to deal with the embarrassment of parents snapping pictures while he's trying to tie on that dang corsage,


 he also had to hear suggestions from the 5-7 year-old crowd.  
"Maybe tie it on the top," XiXi suggested.
"Just do a knot," said Cholita.


I promised to not be a presence during the dinner, but did want to get at least one group photo.
Don't they look so great?

And I might have snuck in once or twice to get photos of the little kids in action.  They decided that Cholita would take the girl's orders and XiXi would do the boys.   All of our dinner guests got the apple pecan salad with raspberry vinaigrette, and they all got the same side dishes of gingered carrots, sesame asparagus, and rosemary potatoes, but there were two different entree options.  If they picked the parmesan chicken, easy peasy.  But the filet mignon took some advanced waitressing.  Did they want it well-done, medium, or rare?  Did they want the mushroom caper sauce?  On the top or on the side?

But they'd practiced and they were ready.


Then one of the girls asked Cholita what she would recommend.


This threw her for a bit of a loop.
She blushed and said "The filet mignon is........very.......ummmm.......flavorful."
It made her sister giggle.
Not surprisingly, her recommendation was taken.
Make that one more order of filet mignon.


The group spent about two hours at our house.
I heard lots of laughter and conversation.


Now they're off at the dance, hopefully enjoying every minute of the exciting, awkward, unique rite of passage that is prom. 
Now I've got some cleaning to do.

7 comments:

Brooke said...

Fabulous! I tried & tried to talk my 16-year old son into going to prom, but no luck. :( Maybe next year I'll promise him a fancy-schmancy catered dinner to entice him.

Beach Mama said...

What a wonderful idea! I love your vintage prom photos..especially of the parents. Our prom photo makes me want to run for the hills it is so goofy! What a lovely dining experience for the group.

Jen Bay said...

So fun!

Michael and Denise said...

How fun!

Betsey said...

I loved every bit of this entry! From the photos/room decor, to the beautiful pictures YOU took, to the experience you captured in words, it was all so wonderful! Your creativity and enthusiasm inspires me. What a beautiful night to have remembered for ever in this blog entry.

Lavender Cottage said...

This brings back memories of our prom so long ago. It was a great idea to have photos of the parents from their proms, interesting to see the styles from back then for the kids.

Fishtail Cottage said...

awe - this is just so fun! thanks so much for linking up to the first garden party of 2013. you link reminds me of when we used to host the before party and do photo's in the garden before they all headed off for the night! xoxo, tracie