How to Organize a Wedding Potluck

Monday, December 8, 2014


  1. Get a screenshot from your sister of the Facebook invite to your brother's wedding, which is in a month.
  2. Be glad you left Facebook.  
  3. Notice the "please bring a dish" line.
  4. Immediately decide to volunteer to organize that madness.
  5. Spend 10% of the remaining time thinking about how much you'd regret this, either way.
  6. Volunteer.
  7. Have a sister-in-law to-be who is incredibly easy going and good to work with.
  8. Start gathering an arsenal.
  9. Spend an hour in the disposable table service aisle at Walmart, trying to estimate number of guests and decide how much to spend on plates. 
  10. Spend 15 minutes figuring out plastic silverware and wondering why you can't buy knives separately.
  11. (Ultimately use the wonderful one-box collection of plasticware your sister-in-law to-be brings.) 
  12. On the day of the wedding, go to a church (any one you can borrow a key to, or the one your dad pastors) and go through kitchen drawers and cupboards, a little frantically, for serving spoons and plastic serving bowls.
  13. Wonder if you should grab a punchbowl, but remember the bride-to-be has one.
  14. Go to pick up boxes of things from the bride-to-be's house, but forget the punchbowl.
  15. Spend 20 minutes throwing together a large beef roast in a supply closet. 
  16. Enlist another brother to pick up the punch bowl.
  17. Help with the last decorating touches.
  18. Get to the church 15 minutes late and start getting dressed, because you are a bridesmaid.
  19. Do pushups with the bride-to-be, half-dressed, in heels (which will break 5 minutes before the walk down the aisle), wondering where on earth your brother found this jewel of a woman. 
  20. Borrow a pair of wedge heels that will pinch your feet so tightly they will be numb for two days.
  21. Watch with the relief and gratefulness reserved for oldest sisters of lots of brothers as rings are exchanged, vows are made.
  22. Relish the walk back down the aisle on the arm of your oldest brother, with whom you've exchanged looks during the wedding sermon, which was as wedding sermons tend to go these days.
  23. Peel, pull, yank off the too-small wedges and slip into a pair of gold flipflops.
  24. Feel cool, cold mud slip into your flipflops as you walk to your car. 
  25. Climb into your car and wonder why your knees hit the dashboard. 
  26. (Learn later that your sister moved the seat forward when she drove home to pick up another dress after the zipper broke in the dress she was wearing.)
  27. Remind yourself to WD40 the seat as you try and fail to move it back into "tall" position.
  28. Rush, crunched, to the reception venue and get there before anyone else, and anyone with a key. 
  29. Bless the train that roars past, blocking the entrance to the parking lot while you change into jeans and a more comfortable pair of heels, in the uncomfortably tight front seat.
  30. Discover that the coffeepot doesn't work.
  31. Discover there is no punchbowl ladle.
  32. Start making a mental list of things to do differently next time (next time?)
  33. Wonder if there will be enough food.
  34. Find a certain humility in reaching for dishes handed from family, friends, strangers. 
  35. Take a giant punchbowl full of clementines from someone.
  36. Drink.
  37. Hold babies and shake hands and give hugs while trying to keep order, food-wise.
  38. Be extremely grateful for help.
  39. Realize that this chaos is slightly better than unorganized chaos.
  40. Hug your younger, taller brother and revel in his appreciation.
  41. Go home and scrape out the last bits of beef roast. Find delicious scraps of meat and a completely charred carrot and wonder what it is you know about life, exactly, while talking with an even younger, even taller brother late into the night.
  42. Remember, much later, that someone's punchbowl is still in the trunk of your car.

(In all seriousness, though, here's how to really organize a wedding potluck.)


1 comment:

  1. What would have happened without you? I just folded all that cloth so it's ready for the next event!

    ReplyDelete

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