Sunday, December 7, 2008

Denver White Elephant Extravaganza!

Scene at Denver Literary Ladies Luncheon December Extravaganza: Sharon Glassman, Christie Hartman, Nancy Hightower, Karen Carter, Kate Schafer Testerman (face obscured).

Denver's second annual LLL White Elephant Gift Exchange was held yesterday at the Gracious Home of Bella Stander, National Cofounder & Western Social Secretary. Everyone shared food, drinks and tastefully wrapped dreadful (or not-so) regifts. To add to the fun, there was an Accessories Swap. Gold hoop earrings were the thing to de-accession; at least 7 pairs were up for grabs (seen at Karen Carter's rear, above).

Carleen Brice demonstrated her "Welcome White Folks" video, to much hilarity. Andrea Cohen is seated at left; Sharon is looking over her shoulder. At the next screening, Tamara Greenleaf laughed so hard she cried; she's wiping her tears at right. Carleen gave a copy of her book, ORANGE MINT & HONEY, and an audiobook. Not exactly White Elephants, but they were greatly appreciated.

Left, Denise Turner receives the gift acclaimed as Best Wrapped. Little did she know what many of us guessed: that it contained the ghastly double-necked vase Carleen got last year. We expect it to reappear in 2009. A can of guava paste has been circulating in Charlottesville for a decade; here's hoping it turns up again this Friday.

Right, the Tackiest Gift, a balky lava lamp bestowed on Karen by Nancy Hightower.

Above left, Sharon models a fetching ensemble--black knit cap & mauve camisole--received from Janet Singleton (rear), who's holding the finishing touch: a red-flowered scarf. Center, Christie models a belt from the Accessories Swap. Right, Nancy models a flowered neck--we think--thing and black handbag, from Vanessa Appleby, who had to leave (escape?) before all the gift giving.

Left, Janet responds to Kristin Nelson's gift of a pewter,, vase?

Right, Bella with the Most Ghastly Gift, courtesy of Denise, who gave as good (i.e., bad) as she got.

As you can see, Janet was stunned by the spotted green frog from Denise. Carleen was amazed by an opened bag of Snickers bars (another Halloween leftover) and can of evaporated milk from Debra. They were packed in the most precious and patriotic gift bag EVER (the trifecta: teddy bear, angel & American flag). For some reason Carleen refused to take it with her, so it was squirreled away by Bella, to make a glorious reappearance next year.

More hapless giftees.

Left, Debra Goldyn with Nelly CD.

Right, Elizabeth Wrenn with PURE SKIN. (Note how her eyes match the book jacket!)

Left: Pleased (or faking it) recipient Paula Singer and giver Elizabeth Wrenn with--ick!--POOH'S LITTLE BOOK OF FENG SHUI.

Below: Best-Coordinated Package & Recipient Nancy Jarrell and bag (Denise is at left). Inside was a silver bookmark in the shape of a heart. Groans all around for its being truly lovely.

Happy giftees Kate Schafer Testerman with cat thingy; Kristin Nelson with DOGA: Yoga for Dogs (dog on left resembles her Chutney).


Carleen Brice said...

Bella, Thanks for hosting! I had big fun!

Sustenance Scout said...

Woops, had no idea I practically took down the merchandise display! So kind of you to point that out to everybody, Bella! Love the photos of all the gift-giving. So glad I was able to attend, as always! K.

Bella Stander said...

The merchandise was never in danger; I was watching. And all the hoops found new homes.

William said...

I really enjoyed reading & seeing this post. You're a fine looking bunch of Ladies!:)

I've been an invisible Google Group Member and have enjoyed reading your posts (in a Feed) for quite some time.

I've recently published myself. It has been a wonderful first-time experience..

..So happy I found your blog. You're inspiring, Ladies.


Bella Stander said...

Thanks, William! Wonderful to have a Gentleman Admirer.

Anonymous said...

The pictures say it all: a gaggle of great women + great gag (as in "Gag!") gifts = WAY FUN! Bella, thanks for being a Hostess Extraordinaire and Bequeather of Cashmere.
Happy holidays to all. -Elizabeth

Bella Stander said...

My pleasure! It was the most fun I'd had all year.

Denise said...

Thanks Bella. You really know how to throw a party! I had one heck of good time.