Sunday, December 10, 2006

Tiny Trees...and some wine

Not enough wine, but some wine.

Volunteer catering gig went pretty well Friday evening. People were very complimentary about the food and the set up, and that's what makes it worthwhile...well, no, I'm lying about that. Money makes it worthwhile, but since this was a volunteer gig, accolades and high praise will have to do.

The concept for our event was a Festival of (Tiny) Trees and Wreaths, wherein we solicited donations from local business and civic-type groups, as well as any individual who wanted to donate a fully decorated tree or wreath for a silent auction, and the money would go for books at the local library. It really is a good cause, and we did it last year and made quite a bit of moola for books.

In keeping with (what we hope is) the tradition but bearing in mind that people may not want to buy a full-size tree, we tacked the "tiny" part on for this year. We requested trees that were between 2-4 feet, but wreaths could be any size. We got some very creative entries this year, and our group did a Chronicles of Narnia-themed tree...we were trying to follow up on our success from last year with a Harry Potter-themed tree that went for $175 at the auction, but there aren't any damned Narnia ornaments out there. How can this be?

The only "official" Narnia ornament is this one from Hallmark of Lucy coming through the wardrobe. It's a cool, 2-sided ornament, but it way hard to build a tree out of a single ornament. So, off to the Disney store we go, and we co-opted a couple of action figure sets to make our tree. (Stupid me forgot camera tonight, so I don't have a picture to post yet...I know someone took pix (KB, that would be your child!), so I can post one later.)

I wired a large action figure of the White Witch to the front, and it sort of took off from there. (Yes, I know she's the bad guy in this tale, but she was just too perfect as a large ornament. Besides, why do you think there's a "Disney Villains" collection? It's for people like me who admire the evil that 'toons do! )

I can post some pix of last year's Harry Potter tree instead, because I am really, really, really pleased with the way it turned out. Of course, I can't focus the camera worth a crap, but you can get the general idea.

See the giant Snitch out in front? I made that. Yes, me. And I'll share the secret with you! I found this cool styrofoam ornament that had all sorts of gold beads, glitter, and a general covering o' shiny stuff. Next, you get a large white dove (not a real one, of course!), or if you can find just a set of wings in your local crapt store (Hobby Lobby, Michael's, etc), get the biggest ones you can find. The ones from the dove just sort of pulled out and had these lovely wire posts that I just drove down into either side of the gold ball. Viola! Instant Snitch!

We were lucky that Target had 2 official HP ornaments last year--Harry on his broom and the Hogwarts Express engine--which really got us going. I found a double-decker bus to sub for the Knight Bus, a Crookshanks-style cat, some brooms, and a bunch of tiny wire rim glasses (in the Doll section at the crapt store) that we painted black. I can't remember all the ornaments--there was an beautiful white owl for Hedwig. Some little black cauldrons left from Halloween and wands made from cinnamon sticks and glitter were added as well. I think the piece d' resistance (besides my Snitch) was using a large Halloween witch's cauldron for the base...that made it rock.

It was a very hard tree to give up, especially while it lived on my coffee table for a week or so. I kept repeating "it's for a good cause; it's for a good cause."

The Man has come down with some sort of 24-48 bug that is beginning to transfer itself to me...oh, joy. This is going to make getting up at 5:30 in the morning so much fun. We have to be at school at 7 am for our finals (that's everyone in the whole culinary program), and after we finish our respective tests, we get to clean the kitchen. My absolute favorite thing in the whole wide world (is the sarcasm coming through loud and clear?).

I'm taking the weary body to bed in hopes that I can remember everything I need to about eggs, cheese, and gelatin strengths. Wish me well!

1 comment:

Linna said...

Good luck on your final! I know you will do fine.

Your Harry Potter tree sounded marvelous. Narnia just isn't in the same league (despite being a wonderful series). The movie was okay. The Lucy ornament is very clever. I didn't see that at my local Hallmark. (Okay, Hallmark ornaments are not my style. Except for some of the spaceship ones. I like blown glass ornaments better. My childhood.)

We will be putting out tree up next weekend. Or if Bob and Sandy come, it may get pushed off even further. It will be up until New Years so a shorter time keeps it more fresh. Joseph can't handle too many needles on the rug.