The Beef 'n Beer was a success. Enough money was raised so Em can pay her living expenses for the 2 months she'll be out of work "and even buy food!" as she put it.
The event started out well. We quickly set up the tables for the baskets. There were so many! People started coming in at 4 o'clock and the fun began. There was a lot of hugging and laughing as we got the chance to see some of Em's friends that we hadn't seen in a long time. Everyone bought raffle tickets and then chose the prize they wanted to take a chance on. There were bags set up in front of each item and they quickly filled up with tickets. Kate and I sold tickets. The entrance fee entitled everyone to all the beer they could drink and really good food. There was roast beef and sausage and peppers and meatballs for sandwiches. Two different pasta dishes and nice soft rolls. It was all catered by the bar and it was delicious. I've lived around the corner from this place for over 20 years and have never gone in. I'm not much of a drinker and have never liked cigarette smoke but now that public spaces are smoke free, we might have to become "regulars"!
Em has a group of girl friends she calls her Jersey girls. These young women grew up together from Kindergarten through high school. There were many, many sleepovers and school trips and projects and parties and good times. Tis is Keley, Laura, Em, Michele and Amy. They have been supportive and loving and they just define the word 'friend'. Em is lucky to have them.
There was one mass drawing for prizes near the end of the party. One of Jim's uncles won three prizes which he gave back to them so they ended up with Kate's basket, my basket and one of the baskets their landlady donated. We didn't buy raffle tickets because we thought it might seem tacky if we won.
And here is my little family. One of Peter Kevin's sisters asked for a photo and we obliged. I think the Bud Light sign is a nice touch. It was such a successful day. When Amy and I counted all the money and saw how much we raised, we were stunned. She had hoped for a lot less. I hadn't any idea of how much it would be but I was thrilled. It will make Em's life a little less stressful as she recuperates. And that will make recuperating easier and faster. Money can't make life perfect but it sure can make it easier. Em thanked everyone at the end, telling them how much their support means and how blessed she feels. She broke down a little (which she blames on my genes. I cry easily) but the feeling was heartfelt and obvious.
I was so tired last night. It didn't seem like I did very much. Mostly schmoozing and selling tickets but I was so tired I went to bed before 11. On a Saturday night. I must be getting old.
Today is grey and chilly. I'm going down to make some waffles for breakfast and then spin. I can't think of a better way to end the weekend.