Sunday, May 20, 2007

City Views, Country Dreams

A late good Sunday evening from New York.

We are still having our iffy spring moments, interspersed with hints of summer. And then, some sort of shower squall passes through and we regress. This morning I wore one of my "vintage" handknit, by me, jumpers out to do what I had to do.

Within the hour, the day warmed, and I wished that I had put on a lighter layer. But no time to return home, had to press on.

This was a beautiful New York day. My neighborhood had a street fair going on Amsterdam Avenue, and also a bit of vehicle/pedestrian contretemps (UPL, did I get that remotely correct?) was ongoing as the annual AIDS walk NY crossed the City.

It was to be a day off, and I did observe that status by not getting up any earlier than I truly wanted to. But then. I remembered that I had not made a proper list of what needed doing before I went to the shop this afternoon, prior to this evening's informal baby shower for my truly wonderful assistant manager.

Thrilled to report that I had managed to delegate some of the catering duties relating to this evening's gathering to two of my staff. They did a very good job. I am delighted.

We invited all staff from other NYC shops to come to the shower, and up to the 11th and 1/2 hour were still fielding phone calls re who would/would not attend.

This speculative aspect created a bit of a challenge to my two wonderful staff members who handled the catering.

Pleased to report that all was swell. Food arrived on time, beautifully arranged, and plentiful enough. We had lots of bubbly already in the house and in the fridge. I got some alternative beverages (various organic juices) for the mom-to-be.

Thrilled that some staff members, whose day off it actually was, did show up. Also, we had lovely arrivals from the shop location that mom-to-be and I worked at prior to our current team-up.

Best yet, mom-to-be's handsome husband honored us with his handsomeness, wit, and just great personality. Everyone that wasn't working at our shop today started gathering within a half-hour of the shop closing hour. It was fun to set up our buffet tables, bring out the flowers, the bubbly. And the lovely wrapped gifts, which, when opened later on in our party, displayed a real variety of choice. (Gift certificates from shops, to zen buddhist talismans, to Tibetan silk shawls, to all sorts of baby clothing and toys, to breast-feeding helps, to lovely treats for the new mother like chocolate (!) bubble bath, scented candles and lotions.

Sometimes I feel that my staff do not connect. This evening, at the shower, they connected absolutely. And other folks that know of my assistant from our years together, also contributed in beautifully creative ways. It was a lovely Sunday evening. Lots of digital camera photos were taken and lots of very funny words were spoken , and we were all together.

What more could we ever wish for?

The little baby boy that will be born in mid June (Gemini) will have many good wishes sent to him from folks who have worked along, and well know, what a wonderful mother and father he has. Gives me hope for the future, that this wife and husband will soon be a mother and father.

Pleasant dreams to all.


  1. A baby shower is always one of the nicest celebrations. What can be more beautiful than the expectant mother? It's always so much fun to pick out a special gift - with no need to be practical or sensible!
    So, you had a busy 'day off' after all - but what a pleasant one!

  2. If you ever feel teh need to throw an impromptu party for me please do not hold back but not I hasten to add a baby shower! It seems so odd to me to hear you work on sundays! Good lord does NYC never sleep.. no silly me of ocurse it does not!

    ps glad you like the Degas..

  3. You sound as if you had a really great time, its lovely when things go well. the "shower party" thing in the States is great I wish us Brits did it a bit more. I have a New Yorker staying with me at the moment he is visiting his brother who lives nearby.

  4. I always wanted a baby shower too, but we don't really go in for them here, it's a shame.

  5. What a wonderful evening and your writing, perfect as always, describes it so well. I don't think we have baby showers over here, I may be wrong, probably am, but we didn't in my day. I enjoy these glimpses of your life in New York so much.

  6. Baby showers - not really a UK thing and don't think I would've wanted to know what I was having - the anticipation is what kept me going through the whole thing!
    Health and happiness to them all tho'.

  7. Hello Frances,

    How lovely to hear about the Baby Shower, what wonderful gifts. Don't know if people still do baby showerws over here, certainly not been to one.

    Weather decidely chilly and damp here today, feel like putting th heating on, but won't!

    Best Wishes

  8. I so love that American "swell". What a gorgeous sounding event. No, they haven't made their way over here, although when I left work, I was given endless perfect baby things from my dear friends, all the equipment like toys until you have to use it and you realise that it IS for real.

  9. Hello Frances,
    What fun to hear about the baby showers, and wonderful gifts.Love your diary's Frances, they are my "letters from America", you write so well. Have a book on Henry James at the moment. He was born 15 April 1843 at 21 Washington Place, New York City. He was given Order of Merit in 1916, and died the same year on 28th February in Chelsea. I did not know that a Commemorative tablet was unveiled in "Poets" Corner of Westminster Abbey in 1976.A colder day today Frances, but the sun has been peeping it's head out now and again.
    Warm Wishes.

  10. Ahh lovely blog Frances. What a pleasure to see the team working together so well on something that isn't really work. I hope the little family will be very happy. Look forward to hearing more.

  11. Ah lovely....why a shower I wonder? As I've said in email, my only experience is via Sex and the City - but I do wish I'd had one for James......and would love to go to one. Blessings to the Gemini to be...xxxxxxxxxx

  12. Francis you are going to have to put some photos on for us!
    whernt you scared of getting food on the clothing, i may be wrong but i see a big table in your shop full of food and people walking around with drinks,arrgghh potential nightmare.Thanks for your kind comments and i'm sooo glad you like my trees.xo

  13. Hello Frances,
    What a lovely send off you gave your assistant manager. It sounds as if there is going to be a very beautiful baby born soon. The handsome husband ,will soon be the handsome father and will have passed on his genes to his baby son. I guess you will be looking forward to seeing the new baby , what are the popular names in NY for a boy?
    Enjoyed reading about your ride with your friend. Old friends are the best, a friendship which really stands the test of time.
    Hope all is well with you . Milly x

  14. The baby shower sounded fabulous. We don't really have that over here. When I got married however, my friends held a bridal shower for me because I don't drink and am not into the whole, kiss-o-gram, hen night thing. It was a great night.

    I'm glad that you felt that your collegues bonded, even for a little while. Perhaps you will find out about more shared interests that you may have.

    Take care - Jacqui x