Garden Farewell Party

Last night I threw a farewell dinner party in the garden next door for some very good friends of ours who are moving to Manhattan in two weeks. I’m incredibly sad they are leaving. Sharon, the cute blonde below, is one of the most genuine, down to earth and kind people I know. Plus she is really very funny and is always down for exploring the city with me. She is one of my closest friends here and I’m going to miss her and her adorable family terribly.
Anyway, snif snif, back to the party. I set it up in the garden next door open to the community. There are two picnic tables there which was perfect for the 14 guests. I’d never seen anyone have a dinner party there, but there didn’t seem to be any reason why we couldn’t! It was a great night, a little chilly but a nice full moon. We brought down a few blankets and coats in case people were cold.

On the menu:
Mini french onion soups in ramekins
Two kinds fresh of salads (others brought these)
Grilled marinated artichoke heart, salami, ham, and provolone paninis
Ina Garten’s Key Lime Pie
My friend’s Banana Cream Pie- secret recipe!

A couple other details:The place cards were packets of Forget-Me-Not seeds with names of the guests on each stick
Beforehand I complied a list of “New York Favorites” from everyone attending and printed it out on card stock for them to have. Along with that, we all pitched in and bought them a couple favorite New York travel books like the picture book This Is New York and City Walks with Kids: New York.
Wild flowers were the decoration in different vessels: mason jars, other kinds of vintage-y glass containers.

It was a really fun night. I want to plan another dinner in the garden again soon. It’s bittersweet of course- I’m trying to be excited for their new adventure, but my heart is kind of breaking too. Mwah Mwah To Sharon, Rob and the gang!

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Hey Kaira, I just went down to the flower market here and picked up a bunch of different kinds of wild flower types flowers and arranged them myself. I'd recommend doing the same!

I reallllly love your floral arrangements! What kind of flowers did you use?? I actually want EXACTLY the same flower vibe at my wedding. I'm thinking of hand picking and doing it myself. Any tips?!

masses of candles and blooms in jars!! what a down to earth, approachable way to have a party! cheers kari

When we lived in Menlo Park, I met Sharon. Some friends of ours worked with Rob or something. Anyway, I only met her the once, but she was way cool. What a beautiful way to say farewell. Sorry to hear that your friend is moving!

With cooler fall temps approaching, I have also been craving an outdoor dinner party with lots of candles. Yours looks lovely!

I can't decide what my favorite thing about this is. So fun!

this looks perfect, i'm sure they loved every minute of it

Liz, these are gorgeous! I'm so inspired to throw a party. Oh and hey, send your friends my way…I'll take good care of them here in NYC 😉

Such a great party! All the details were so thoughtful and lovely. And the food was crazy good (especially the pies!)

What an amazing evening!! The candlelight is beautiful!

Thanks everyone for the nice comments! Barbara, yes they were those battery operated tea lights? a ton of them. cheap but soooo much easier than real candles!

Wow, very cool effect. were those tea lights? i love them but hate lighting all of them!

What a sweet party. I am sure your friends felt loved. Love all the little details!

can you share the list of ny faves? i will be there in a few weeks.

Everything is so pretty. I love the way the candlelight lights up the tables. And what a fun setting!

What a gorgeous party! I love the glowing tables and all the thoughtful details. I'm sure your friends felt the love.

absolutely gorgeous. how do you do it?! i love the candlelit along the table settings.

This is seriously adorable! We live in a flat and I'm throwing a tea party in about 2 weeks, I have NO idea of how to decorate the place… those flowers arrangements look amazing and doable 😉 Thanks

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