The theme for the shower was Jane Austen. Stephanie has a literature major and loves books, so I thought something along that line would be just the thing.
Punch was served as people arrived (in my latest find from Thrifty Threads!):
Our opening activity was a matching game. Upon arrival, people were asked to choose a card with a name/book title from Austen's works on it. Once we were all seated I passed around a basket of presents wrapped in white tissue paper and each one tagged with a quote or character description. We took turns reading the quotes and then matching the gift with the person holding the correct card.
I forgot to take a picture of all the little gifts neatly wrapped in their tissue paper -- but here is a mishmash picture from my desk before the wrapping took place. The gifts served as favors and were meant to evoke the feeling of Austen England.
Thanks to my mom's arranging and my friend's flower garden, we had lovely flowers all over. Plenty of candles were lit to give the atmosphere of 200 years ago.
Before we dove into the food, we had three ladies share readings from books of their own choosing. Our first reading was from Laura Ingalls Wilder about a Butter Churn -- very amusing and yet filled with truth about marriage. Then we had a challenging piece from Edith Schaeffer on caring for husbands/family members during sickness and how that is not time lost but is part of growing and nurturing that relationship. We ended with 3 very funny pieces about Book Lice, Queen and Worker Bees, and Henry V (Shakespeare)! I couldn't have thought of better readings myself!
In keeping with our theme we had food that would have been served in Jane Austen times:
A few boiled puddings were a must! (Confession: I couldn't bear the thought of boiling a few puds for 4 hours on the stove top in this heat. So, I stooped to using the microwave. Fortunately, I have a microwaveable pudding bowl which I bought and never used. It came in handy! Within 20 minutes I had two puddings nicely cooked!) Here we have Plum Pudding (or Christmas Pudding to be more precise):
Another friend brought the fruit bowl and it was arranged just how I imagined something in the Austen time period to be! And, just the fruits they ate back then too!
Sticky Toffee Pudding was a new discovery for many:
Pavlova also graced the table:
In case you are interested, I do plan to post recipes on the recipe blog sometime soon. And, I thought perhaps a few of you might be interested in some of the books I used to get ideas for the shower:
Tea with Jane Austen by Kim Wilson
Jane Austen for Dummies by Joan Klingel ray
What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew by Daniel Pool
So You Think You Know Jane Austen? by Sutherland & Le Faye
Jane Austen and Food by Maggie Lane
Jane Austen in Style by Susan Watkins
Jane Austen's World by Maggie Lane