Monday, October 13, 2008

You found what??

Just when we think we've seen it all...someone used what appears to be a soft wad of dryer lint for a bookmark.

The Cass District Library System offers this page on their public website.  It contains light-hearted admonitions regarding patron use of library materials.  I especially enjoy the graphic at the top of the page and the summary at the very bottom.  We should add something like it to our own public website.

Next time:  Overheard at the library.  Stay tuned.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Family Gatherings

We've returned from a joyous occasion - the wedding of a niece.  My husband's side of the family is a humorous group.  Three states are represented, Montana, Colorado, and Washington.  We laugh a lot when we're together and I miss them tremendously when our gatherings end.

Weddings, of course, afford many opportunities for hilarity.  The best-planned preparations can hit momentary snags.  Unforeseen issues may arise.  Simple things often become strangely complicated.  This wedding was no exception, but it speaks to the temperaments of the family that many of the problems ended up just fine, with good stories to tell as a result.

The wedding was to be held outdoors, at 5:30 p.m., in Missoula.  It almost never rains there in early October but guess what?  The forecast for The Big Day:  90% chance of rain.  Sunny on the days before, sunny on the days after, but rain on the special day.  The Father Of The Bride kept an eye on a trusted weather website.  At one point, the forecast was revised to include the phrase dangerous weather.  As you may imagine, this led to deeply-felt musings on the part of the family regarding contingency plans.

It did, indeed, rain.  We awoke to a downpour.  But the reception tents had been erected the day before, so at least that part would be dry.  We all had assignments and headed off.  Some went to the tents to decorate, others went off to pick up food platters, the members of the wedding party did whatever it is that wedding parties do.  As the day progressed, the skies brightened and there was great rejoicing.  Then, thirty minutes before the ceremony, in came the rain!  But it passed after fifteen minutes and we all toweled off the chairs.  The wedding happened outdoors just as the bride had hoped.  Chilly but mostly dry, and absolutely beautiful.

After the ceremony, we retired to the reception tents.  There were a couple of standing heaters in there, as well as collective body heat.  We were warming up when the call for Family Photos came, and we all trooped out to the photo area.  Hoo!  The wind had begun to blow in earnest and it was cold.  We laughed as we huddled together in the manner of Emperor Penguins.  The photographer finally got us arranged, and just before the photo, Alden said "Say 'freeze'!"  We hightailed it back to the warmth of the tents after our group was photographed.

Later in the evening, the Maid of Honor was beginning her Toast when the lights went out.  The Colorado contingent went off to see what the problem might be.  They found that two extension cords had become unplugged.  Easy to fix!  Holding the ends aloft, they ceremoniously plugged the two cords back together.  Nothing happened.  Hm.  They followed the cords to the primary outlet and discovered the plug's prongs were bent and sparking.  After bending the prongs back into their proper shape, they plugged in the cord and heard cheers from the tent.  Success!

Other memories:  the surprise music for the processional (the end-of-the-movie duet from Juno), the groom almost completely disappearing beneath the bridal gown in search of the garter, Grandma Ida (at 85) boldly standing in the Single Women group hoping to catch the bouquet, Carly Simon's Itsy Bitsy Spider as the music for the groom's dance with his mom, a DJ with a great sense of humor (Y...M...CA...sing it in spanish!...Y...M...CA..A..), all of the cousins having a grand time dancing.

I am a happy Aunt.

As promised, the Mango Buttercream recipe:

1/2 c. butter, softened
1/4 c. mango puree
1 tsp lime zest
1 tbsp lime juice
3 c. powdered sugar

1. Cream the butter until it's light and fluffy, about 2 minutes
2. Add the mango puree, zest, and juice, and mix well
3. Gradually add the icing sugar until it's your desired spreading/piping consistency.  If it gets too stiff, thin it with a little milk or a bit more mango.

To get the mango puree, I purchased a jar of mango (look in the refrigerated section of Produce), then mashed it up.  It worked just fine.  The first time I made this, I was bereft of limes but the icing was still yummy.  I actually had limes the second time I made it, and it was even better.  Who needs the cupcake?

Next time:  I have no idea.  Stay tuned.