Growing up, each Chinese New Year, my parents held a potluck, inviting their friends to bring their most treasured dishes from their favorite Chinese restaurants. Maybe they didn’t do it to celebrate the Chinese New Year. Maybe it was a New Year’s thing in general. Either way, I love this idea. Plates full of favorites, marked and labeled, everyone discussing, comparing, and complimenting.
(Cookie Cards, via Country Living)
I brought this idea up to The Suitor, who thought our throwing a Chinese New Year potluck was a bit off color. "You know, because we’re not Chinese and all." It might come off offensive. I hadn’t even thought of that. I’ll pretty much celebrate any holiday, as long as good food’s involved. I adore learning about traditions and sharing with people who have that same lust for life. I hadn’t thought of it being hurtful. In fact, it kind of felt like a tradition of my own, given that I had grown up with Chinese potlucks in my life. I still think it’s a fun idea, but it might look weird, you know, a dining room full of white people eating homemade fortune cookies, dressed in red, with a tablescape to match, lychee martinis at the ready. A little creepy, very Sandra Lee. Still, I love the idea. And love to love that the Chinese New Year falls on Saint Valentine’s day this year.
Speaking of which, I’ve been wanting to bring in small valentines to the kids in Lucas & Abigail’s class at the J, but I wonder if that’s just bad form. It is, after all, SAINT Valentine’s Day, and I’m not sure it will go over well at Jew School. I might still do it: clear cellophane bags, each filled with a banana (so the parents don’t bitch about sugar), with a card attached that reads, "I’m bananas about you." I started making them last night, printing them, then cutting them out with my Silhouette Digital Craft Cutter. (They’re in the Ladybug room). I might also print out a small monkey with the "I’m bananas about you" note, then tie both cutouts as gift tags to the bags with coordinated ribbons. It’s not work; it’s a sick twisted joy.
I don’t know if I enjoy anything as much as I enjoy themes. Themed parties, themed gifts, clever details. I do know that I enjoy people who enjoy it as much as I do. I’ve made a new friend here in Austin who might just be as compulsive as I am when it comes to such crafty loverliness. And she likes to drink. So there’s that.
She’s invited me to join her at a Black Apple Doll party. At first I thought she was being a bit racist. But after some research (read: Googling), I discovered that they’re Marsha Brady dolls, where you need to, in fact, go out and purchase some hippie-looking "vintage rags" and felt, or just buy one on etsy. Yeah, see, if I’m going to sew (at all) never mind something funky/odd/a bit ugly-kitsch, it’s going to be to sew a quilt of all the baby clothes with which I can’t part. Something like this ugly-kitsch quilt (left), just for the memories (ew, but I’d never use orange. That color should be yanked from color wheels everywhere).
Okay, this denim dress pumpkin quilt is actually too ugly to replicate, even if the clothes are replaced with hand embroidered smocking. There’s just too much going on. It would make any room feel cluttered. If I were to make two quilts, one of each of their baby clothes, it would have more white space, but it would still tell a story. I favor this one I found on flickr.
Now then, I either learn to quilt, or I find someone who can do this for me, while I get back to work. In the meanwhile, I need friends who can sew for me. Or I seriously need to take a sewing class, where I at least learn how to make a proper Halloween costume. BTW, how cute is this bi-racial couple? So dear. I bet they would come to my Chinese New Year dinner party.