Susan's body is in the throes of a post holiday party recovery.
In mid November Susan flipped the page on her social calendar and saw that she had one invitation for all of December.
The singular engagement to which she looked forward was Acme Sweatshop's annual bash, which is a lovely, sparkly upscale thing filled with high heels and laughter and alcohol, but she needs more.
So, in the span of two minutes Susan had invitations ordered and commenced dreaming of her very own festive cocktail party. Two more minutes and her daughter agreed to be a low paid employee.
Susan doesn't like to host lots of people because her retarded entertaining abilities get overwhelmed then they lie on the floor, kick their feet and cry, but 20 people was a manageable amount. She became preoccupied with finding a grown up punch to satisfy her non-drinking friends but into which a shot of liquor could be added for the alcoholic enthusiasts.
Ginger ale, pineapple juice, lime juice with optional dark rum was the winner.
Since this all went on when Susan's mother was in town she accompanied Susan to find some sort of festive fabric to throw across the dining table.
What's more festive that three yards of gold sequins? Susan was giddy.
She returned with a load of white candles from a trip to IKEA during which little sister finally bought a coffee table to replace a very impractical upholstered bench that Susan always hated.
Susan selected a reserved palate of silver, white and gold from her established Christmas decorations. Her daughter spent three days making chain garlands from wrapping paper. Susan bought snow flakes in every size from the dollar store which she hung in the windows and from the ceiling when applicable.
The day before the party Susan sent her son upstate for a wrestling tournament, then moved furniture, cleared counter tops, strung lights and made tapenade from olives, sundried tomatoes & garlic. She also worked in some time to visit with one of her best, oldest pals.
The day of the party Susan filled her house with friends from all areas of her life. When it was over all two gallons of the punch, for which Susan had late onset misgivings, was almost completely gone. Same for the rum.
The day after the party Susan woke up with a headache to a house that smelled like bacon. She wandered around like a sloppy, constipated mess eating left over party food. She made a list for next time of what worked and what didn't and determined that 15 people is the magic number for optimum hostess socialization and that she will line her walls with gold sequins.
Also, Trader Joe's Creamy Toscano soaked in Syrah is friggin' fantastic.