Thursday, July 17, 2008

7/18/08 Pampered Chef...Maine Style

I was invited to a Pampered Chef party! Julie in Dallas will be sad that my first party was not one of hers (and I'm sad about that, too) but I thought it odd timing after the beef strogonoff incident. Actually, I had accepted the invitation before the strogonoff event, but it's still great timing. Rhonda, our hostess, lives about 30 minutes from campus. When she sent directions via email, I noticed that Kirsten was on the list, so I emailed her and asked if she wanted to carpool. She said yes! Shwew! That meant I had a navigator to help me get there OR a friend to be with in the event I got lost. Getting lost can be a fun adventure if you have a friend to share it with.

I loved getting to yack with Kirsten on the way out. We had been on a committee together this spring but the committee work was so intense, no one really got a chance to know each other on a personal level. It turns out that we both have sisters very close to our age, we both worked at summer camps as counselors and then as directors, and a few other fun things we had in common. The drive out was through gorgeous Maine hillsides and forests with plenty of lakes (ponds) nearby. The beginning of the trip was similar to the route I took last December to go to Harry's town supper in Chesterville. And very soon after turning left at the bridge, we drove past the Chesterville Town Office, which was the location for Harry's town supper. The next landmark was "the closed country store" and I was guessing that it was the then open country store where I got directions to the Town Office. Sure enough, it was. Only we were coming from the other direction. There really were angels out that wintry December night that got me to Harry's supper! Seeing it in daylight without snow told me how incredibly fortunate I had been that I even got to that supper that night. And just a little further down the road, we arrived at Rhonda's. Oh my! She lives on a real farm! There was a barn with heavy equipment outside and animals in the field and a dirt road to drive up to get to the farmhouse. It looked so "country"! It was fabulous.

The party was a blast. I don't know for sure since this was my first, but I'm pretty sure that this party was just like any Pampered Chef party where a group of women gather at a friend's home, someone does a fun demonstration of wares, then you sit around eating, yacking, and flipping through the catalog. This was no different until the Pampered Chef representative got to the part of the demonstration where she was talking about the boning knife that they offer. She showed its flexibility and explained its purpose and quality and then gave examples of how and why to use it. "You'll save those precious grocery dollars if you buy the whole chicken at Hannaford's and cut it into pieces yourself instead of buying the package of boneless breasts," she said. Then she got my attention when she said, "And for those of you who raise your own chickens, you can easily butcher them yourselves with this handy knife." Wow. I just don't picture housewives from the suburbs of Dallas being able to relate to that advantage of the boning knife!

Sylvia from the Computer Center was also there and the three of us hung out together most of the night. There were a lot of other nice people there, but I really enjoyed these two women. I had so much fun I forgot to take a photo, but on the way out of Rhonda's lovely farm house, I saw the pigs in the field and wondered if some day they'd meet the edge of a Pampered Chef boning knife.

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