The Bearded Iris

A Recalcitrant Wife and Mother Tells All

The results are in…

Well I know you are all on the edge of your seats waiting to hear about my Pampered Chef par-tay last Saturday!

The reason this was such a big deal is that I don’t entertain very often. I’ll be honest with you, it’s because I have an inferiority complex. Most of the time, I feel like a laminate counter top girl living in a granite counter top world. Or as my husband lovingly says after he witnesses me try on the 14th outfit, “It’s tough being you, isn’t it.”

Long story short, I rarely ever get my shit together enough to entertain.

So, the thought of hosting a Pampered Chef party was daunting.

But I sucked it up and I did it. And we had a great time! Well, I think we did. I was actually too tired from cleaning until my fingers bled to fully enjoy it. But the food and the company were excellent, I must say, even if the hostess {me} was not.

I learned a few things about life in general during the process that are worth sharing:

For starters, never have a party over spring break. You’ll get a poor turn out. Duh.

Secondly, the tone you set with your invitation is really important. Know your audience! I emailed out two different invitations, and the one that led to the best attendance was the one I sent to my closest friends. Maybe they came because they are my good friends. But maybe they came because their invitation started with the phrase “Please… save me from myself.” These gals rose to the occasion and supported their anxiety-ridden friend in need. These are the kind of friends you cherish for life. Anne, Kathy, Terri – thank you.

The invite that wasn’t so well received? That would be the one I sent to the ladies I know in my neighborhood. It started like this:

My sister-in-law Teresa is a brand new Pampered Chef consultant and I promised her I’d help her get started by hosting a party. I’m trying to assemble a group of the nicest and most fun people I know to help her practice her schtick! Unfortunately, none of them can come, so I thought I’d ask you.
Kidding.
Seriously, want some free food?
Or perhaps you just want to see how ugly my kitchen cabinets are so you can feel better about your own home?
Either way, I’m cool with it. I’m just looking for a good time. And some new recipes and kitchen gadgets wouldn’t hurt.

 

I don’t need to tell you that this invitation went over like a blender full of three-day-old roadkill.

Of the 16 neighbors I sent it to, only one came. That’s a success rate of 6%. Sure, it was spring break and many of those gals were out of town. But also, apparently not everyone gets my humor. Who knew?

The ONE person from my neighborhood who did take the bait, as shitty as that bait was? Turns out that gal is a real peach, bless her heart. I already knew that actually, but she sealed the deal for me when she showed up at my house carrying this:

"I brought you a hostess gift!"

One, the “hostess gift” is a dying art. Who does that anymore? Especially to a purchasing party where the guest is kinda expected to spend money! But two, a hostess gift that looks like a specimen jar of urine? I love this girl.

Don’t worry. It’s not urine. It’s actually real extra virgin olive oil that someone in her family exported from an olive orchard in Tuscany!  I wish you could smell it… pure HEAVEN. I drizzled some of it over a salad this weekend and it practically made me weep with joy, it was that good. What an incredibly thoughtful and generous gift. Thank you, Lisa!

I also learned some fabulous new ways to respectfully decline a shitty invitation…

For instance, from my good friend Nora Vagina:

I hate these almost as much as I hate baby showers! I don’t understand housewares or babies, so it’s all kind of lost on me.  So I think I will respectively decline.  You are a good wife and sis-in-law and God will reward you.

I just applaud her honesty, don’t you? And bonus points for ending with a blessing. She’s a classy broad all around, that one. And believe you-me, it takes one to know one, fuckin’-A.

Or how about this decline from one of my other friends, Yolanda:

Or you can just stab me in the eye.

Again, how can you not feel anything but admiration for someone who just tells it like she sees it? Respect, girl.

One more decline that I enjoyed:

Love to. Can’t! But thank you for the invitation.

Simple. Succinct. Effective. Well done!

I also learned that one should never save the most critical cleaning tasks for the day of the party.

I was waiting to do the powder room right before people arrived because, hello, I have two little boys and a hairy-ass husband… things don’t stay clean for long around here. In fact, next time I redecorate, I’m just going to paint my powder room walls yellow and choose a pube-patterned floor tile.

Murphy’s Law, however, guarantees that whatever you save for the last minute will inevitably have to be added to the “Shit I Didn’t Get Done” list.

Thus, I have learned that I should create a prioritized cleaning schedule before a party, and that means things like the powder room take precedence over things like the car and the freezer. Yeah… my freezer was spotless and opened exactly ZERO point ZERO times during the party, but my guests were undoubtedly holding their noses while they used my hairy, pee-sprayed powder room. Good times.

And lastly, I learned to listen to my friends. Margo at Joyful Homemaking suggested I host the party in my newly clean van! Brilliant! And OneShabbyChick advised that I “Have a blast and don’t sweat the tumbleweeds!” What a wise (and stylish) woman! I mean really, true friends seem to like me anyway… stinky powder room, laminate counter tops, quirky humor, and all. And as for the rest, who cares? Let’s all worry less, and party more.

By the way, my sis in law, Teresa did a wonderful job. Not only is she down to earth, but she’s also just as cute as can be and fun to boot. I particularly enjoyed her vast product knowledge and masterful demonstration of the Veggie Wedger, which is almost as fun to use as it is to say. If you live in the northern suburbs of Atlanta and are in the market for some Pampered Chef fabulousness, email me and I’ll hook you up.

Thanks for stopping by!

-Iris

© Copyright 2011, The Bearded Iris.

20 Comments

  1. We were invited to a party not long ago and did not go (put on by a man no less), but if you had invited me I would have come!! Too bad I live in Northern Coastal California. PS I would have bought something too! PSS I have a hairy butt husband too!

  2. Poor guy had to wear stocking thingees in junior high to wrestle so the hair on his legs would not get pulled. He had had a hairy legs and butt since age 14. Please don’t ask me how I know this or tell my kids I shared this! We have always stuck by the motto of “lie to the kids, it does them no good to know things about their parents”.

  3. This is hilarious! I’m not sure what I liked better, “I feel like a laminate counter top girl living in a granite counter top world” (sung to the tune of Don’t Stop Believing in my head, dontchaknow.) or “pube-patterned tiles!”

  4. A Veggie Wedger sounds like a lot more fun than a veggie wedgie.

  5. I can’t believe they turned down that amazing invite. I would have been there in a shot!

  6. Oh my goodness, I found your blog through a series of links from other blogs and you had me laughing out loud through several of your posts. I love your writing style! You’re an excellent, and hilarious, writer. Im definitely coming back for more 🙂 Keep it up!

  7. Again you had me in tears from laughing so hard. Thank you for making my day.
    If I lived near by (I’m in Montana) I would love to see the Home Depot sales associate’s face when you describe what color yellow you would like to paint your bathroom.
    My recommendation if you ‘forget’ to clean the bathroom, serve beer, they will have to pee so bad they will just be grateful you have a toilet, no matter the condition.

  8. OMG! I really thought that was urine!!! I mean you do have pics of crap on your blog so why not….j/k lol

    I love the lady that declined, that’s some funny crap! haha

    PS Ike’s junk is enroute. ETA=unknown. 🙂

    • The Bearded Iris

      April 11, 2011 at 4:53 pm

      You are so sweet to send Ike a “Welcome Home from the Joint” care package, Erin!! I do hope you chose UPS, like your brilliant son suggested. 😉

  9. For the record, I (the one with the hostess gift) would have come even without the humorous invite! You are one of my favorite people and I wouldn’t pass up an opportunity to spend time with you. I assure you that the fact that your party was scheduled on the last day of working 6 days straight (dang tax season) had nothing to do with that decision ;). In any event, I had a wonderful time. You truly do have wonderful friends and I felt honored to be a part of your day. Teresa did a fabulous job and I wish her all the best! She totally sold me on that Veggie Wedge!

  10. Iris I just love ya! I so wish I could have attended a Pampered Chef party like that, pube hairs and all! Guests should just be happy to find the pubes in the bathroom and not in the kitchen.

  11. For some reason I tend to catch up on your blog on Friday nights. Then, I laugh so hard & so loudly that I threaten to wake the 11 month old that takes an hour to get to sleep. But, it’s totally worth it! Thanks for making me spit soda out of my nose two weeks in a row 😉

    Megan

  12. Bernie Bickers

    April 27, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    Two things:
    1) My dad used to be a big wheel in Direct Mail Marketing (a way to sell stuff that existed before this internet thing everyone seems to be talking about). They considered a response rate of 3% to 4% for a direct mail campaign to be a huge success. Of course they were sending out 30 million pieces of mail, so that’s like 1.2 million responses. So be of ggod cheer that at 6% you batted way above average your first time out, and also it could have been worse if 1.2 million people came to see the kitchen tools and pube bunnies.
    2) When I first read “Veggie Wedger” I swear my dyslexic brain read it as “Wedgie Vedger”. So I’m thinking, is that some guy who dozes off while the football team hikes his tightie whities over his head? That’s one tough hombre…

  13. Bernie Bickers

    April 27, 2011 at 4:52 pm

    Two things:
    1) My dad used to be a big wheel in Direct Mail Marketing (a way to sell stuff that existed before this internet thing everyone seems to be talking about). They considered a response rate of 3% to 4% for a direct mail campaign to be a huge success. Of course they were sending out 30 million pieces of mail, so that’s like 1.2 million responses. So be of good cheer that at 6% you batted way above average your first time out, and also it could have been worse if 1.2 million people came to see the kitchen tools and pube bunnies.
    2) When I first read “Veggie Wedger” I swear my dyslexic brain read it as “Wedgie Vedger”. So I’m thinking, is that some guy who dozes off while the football team hikes his tightie whities over his head? That’s one tough hombre…

  14. I know I am months late on reading this post…but I have not laughed this hard in a while! I just spent the last few hours (luckily work is very slow) reading your blog, and I just gotta ask, “will you please be my friend?” I actually think I had a snot rocket at one point I laughed so hard. I can’t believe I have been missing your writing for so long, but can’t wait to catch up on all the past entries. You have some pretty funny commenters too.

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