November 21, 2009

Harvest Dinner

A couple of nights ago our good neighbor, Jason, showed up on our doorstep with an invitation to the ward Harvest dinner. Our road boasts a Mayberry feel and being a community unto itself. And since it's such a long road with so many homes, it is also its own ward, which I think helps that mega sense of community we have here. So, of course,a ward dinner would be a great time to get to know our neighbors better.

When we moved in, so many people dropped by to introduce themselves and leave us with cookies of rice crispy treat. Bu, most of them never came back for a second visit, and now they've all blurred together. I suppose they all see each other on Sundays at church, and since we're not there, we have a little more of a challenge in maintaining friendships on the road.

But Jason and Ginger have been so awesome at helping us get involved whenever possible. Introducing s to neighbors, helping us find maintenance guys that they trust, and giving us all kinds of referrals. We are so blessed!
We called and got a sitter (it was an adults only dinner) and made plans to go. But the sitter got sick and so her mom, my dear friend Barb, kindly offered to sit in for her. Joe and I joked that we wouldn't be able to afford the hourly rate to have a lawyer for a sitter! Barb arrived just minutes before Jason came to pick us up. There was little time for helpful tips before we were whisked away.

The host had a room built onto the back of his home that was bigger than our home and Jason's home combined! It was nuts! One huge open room with exposed beams, a full body mounted elk in one corner, an entire little herd of white mountain goats mounted above the entertaining kitchen, a mountain lion lounging above the door into the main home, an oil painting of the host gutting some animal on a hunt, and all kind of other lavish sportsman style amenities. The room filled up and the tables set for around 100 guests quickly filled up and soon it was standing room only for the late comers. There were 4 types of turkeys. At one point a guest pointed to a mounted turkey on the wall and said, "That's the one we ate last year!" The food was great, but the fellowship was the best!

So many faces that we had only seen in passing, that now we could sit down and chat with for as long as we wanted. We had easy conversation with lots of neighbors and met several young couples that we hadn't known before with whom we really hit it off! The elders showed up and said that they had just come from our house to say hi and had met the baby sitter. I cringed at the thought of Barb being thought of as our baby sitter. It was pretty funny. Pretty much everyone we met knew us already as the "people with the goat that chases joggers." I laughed because there are 5 or 6 families on this road with goats, but we are now the official goat people. If they didn't know us by our goats, they knew us as the project people. "Every time we drive by your house we see you've added something new, but we never see you working! Do you have house elves?" people joked. Everyone was so friendly and welcoming! It was such an enjoyable night.

As we tried to make our exit, we of course had to make our way through throngs of people. AS we did, more people stopped us to talk and it was hard to make a timely escape without feeling rude. We got home and Barb was yawning, still with Hannah Jane awake. Thy had made brownies and were now watching Annie on TV. Barb made a quick escape, leaving her jacket behind, and Hannah Jane was plopped in bed mid-movie. Joe and I sat back and rehashed names and who we really need to spend more time with. We had such a fun evening!

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