I, like, totally, had to go to the "valley" for my friend E(L)'s awesome bridal shower. It was, like, the raddest ever! :P
Gah! She lives in the middle of nowhere. Well, nowhere when it comes to food anyway, I thought as I drove past Encino and Van Nuys and all these other cities that I only knew about through movies or as addresses for television stations before I moved to SoCal. And even after I moved to SoCal, I still have yet to go to the San Fernando Valley for any restaurants.
I've mentioned my friend E(L) before once or twice on the blog. Most of the time, OK, almost every time, we get together, she comes to me so she can get her fix of Chinese and Vietnamese food. If you want to be mentioned on the blog, we have to either try a new restaurant or it has to be a special, bloggable occasion. Ordinary dining excursions to places I've already blogged about won't get you mentioned. Ha!
Anyway, E(L) and her fiance recently bought a new house, and what a house! Take lots of pictures she said after I walked through the door.
As if she had to ask!
Her sisters and mother had flown in from the Midwest for the occasion. I was rude and snapped away instead of offering to help. Sorry E(L)'s middle sister! Not that she needed my help anyway because everything was sooo niiiice!
Goodies for the guests to take home later. The boxes of wine and wine glasses were first place prizes for the winners in the bridal shower games.
The landscapers literally left 40 minutes before guests arrived. They still need to finish planting shrubbery, but the backyard was niiice!
E(L)'s middle sister arrived with two 60-lb suitcases packed with stuff. She arranged all the floral centerpieces. There's even plastic jewels in the bottom of each vase. The tables and chairs were rented, but the rest of the decorations were all her doing.
Trying out my new Lomo Diana 55 mm lens. Does the picture look "dreamy"?
Sweets bar with cupcakes, candies, and chocolate fountain.
The white chocolate-covered red velvet cupcake balls in the bottom right-hand corner were made by E(L)'s youngest sister. Actually, they baked all the cupcakes the day before.
E(L)'s mom complained about how she was put to work until midnight putting stickers of the bride and groom's names on every single piece of packaged candy. That's way too much effort for me!
Later, when guests were scooping candy into jars and bags to take home and debating which cupcakes were their favorites, I held up a stickered chocolate and said my favorite part of the sweets bar was the tiny sticker on every single piece of candy.
"Why, that was me!" said E(L)'s mom with surprise and pleasure. ;) Ha! Do I know how to suck up to mommas or what?
Diana lens effect again. You like?
Done with the decor pics, I finally asked E(L)'s middle sister if I could help. Nope, pretty much everything was done. Instead, I get a cocktail. And what a cocktail!
Salads and sandwiches by California Pizza Kitchen. Middle sister has the hook-up for that too. Man, is there anything E(L)'s middle sister can't do?
After lunch, it was time for bridal shower games. We placed pieces of paper on our heads and drew pictures of the bride in her gown.
Haha. I think I made her look like ET! My excuse was that I had to take my hand off the paper to take pictures.
Then we had a bag of craft supplies to design her dress.
I didn't win either game, but I did win a bottle of wine for knowing the bride the longest -- 13 years.
Egads! Now, I feel old. We had a mutual friend and were all going to be in Boston for a convention so we roomed together. Fast forward and we somehow managed to stay in touch despite cross-country moves for both of us. Neither of us kept in touch with that mutual friend. Funny how that works sometimes.
After the games were over, there was a little bit of down time so I got a tour of the house.
Check out that refrigerated wine cabinet!
She walked me around upstairs too.
Presents! Umm, mine was not that very prettily-wrapped gift. I quickly covered my gift in tissue paper and shoved it into an old shopping bag. That would be the lame gift on the right. I gave her a homemade cake stand and a cooking lesson, of which I knew she'd appreciate the latter more.
Oh! E(L) kept embarrassing me, bragging to all her friends about the blog. *Blush.* I never talk about the blog to strangers! She's so proud she says and wants everyone to know it.
So here, I should tell you, E(L) is my fancy Hollywood friend. She was Lucy Liu's hand double in the first Charlie's Angels movie. Squee! Really! That scene where Lucy fixes the fast food restaurant intercom box, those are E(L)'s hands! :) And in another teen movie, that I can't remember the name of, I saw her in a classroom scene sitting behind the main character. It was quite exciting I tell you when I called her afterward to tell her I saw her in a movie. She used to party at the Playboy mansion too. Haha. All that was a looong time ago. She did a lot of amazing stuff behind the scenes for a number of years before leaving the film industry.
Anyway, after reminiscing for a bit and chatting with her family, it was time to go home.
There were lovely little boxes for guests to take home cupcakes. I got a little jar of colored rock sugar. The lavender is destined for coloring some lavender lemonade. The blue rock sugar will come in handy when I figure out a recipe for Andorian ale. :P
Goody bags included cupcake mix, a heart-shaped bottle stopper, a compact mirror, a heart-shaped mini whisk, and a red velvet cupcake ball.
1 year ago today, Central-style Vietnamese food at Quan Mien Trung Vietnamese Cuisine - Rosemead.
2 years ago today, Chinese food from Xinjiang - cumin beef, horse sausage, and chocolate and yogurt raisins.
3 years ago today, I'm no Persephone because I can't resist eating just six of these lusciously sweet pomegranate seeds.