Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Big Ben and Little One's Rehearsal Dinner

Before Ben and Deirdra (whom he affectionately calls "Green Eyes" and "Little One") left for their honeymoon, I asked them if I could post candid wedding pictures right away. He didn't care; she preferred to be the first to see them. So, I am sitting on my hands out of respect for Little One, my new and beloved daughter-in-law. The only wedding pictures of them that you see on my Facebook wall (if you're my Fb friend) are ones that she has already seen-- posted by other people (who didn't bother asking first. Ahem). I am hoping by Friday to get the green light from Green Eyes to go nutso showing off their beautiful wedding photos.

I will, however, show a couple of pictures from our rehearsal dinner. It was held at the British Chip Shop in Haddonfield, NJ. This restaurant was the place we collectively chose back in the fall when we went up there to scout out the scenery of the wedding and the immediate surrounds. The food here is beyond good. I know it sounds like a sub shop, but this is delectable British fare that I've come to love. ("Chips" are what we in America call "fries," by the way.)

Our sampling of the menu a few months ago helped us narrow the delicious selections to five, from which our guests could choose. Well, actually, some miscommunication that has to do with being out of state versus being local and getting face-t0-face clarity of expectations made for a bit of bump in my road. But a little tete-a-tete with the owner resulted in a handshake and complimentary appetizers.

We dined on Welsh Rarebit (thick slices of beer-battered toast, covered in Irish cheddar and three other cheeses), Bacon 'n Blue Salad, Chip Chop Salad, Big Ben Burgers , Chicken 'n Chips, and Pork Apple Pasties. Just look at one of these scrumptious pasties!

(By the way, you must pronounce them "pah-stees" not "pay-stees" because the latter has implications unfit for a G-rated blog.) Dessert was called the 99Plus, which is vanilla ice cream with toffee topping, peanuts, crumbled shortbread, and a chocolate flake bar.

Haddonfield is a dry town, but you can BYOB. So we bought what the kids asked for: two red wines, two whites, and some good beer. The selections we brought were Cupcake brand (supposedly all the rage in wine circles) Red Velvet Red, Cupcake Merlot (quite tasty or "tah-stee" if you prefer), Cupcake Moscato, and a Chateau St. Michele riesling. For the beer, Ben asked for Fat Tire, Dogfish Head, and Yeungling. Paul also added some Killian's to the mix, which went over quite well. The Chip Shop served a couple of American soda, and a British brand called Dandelion & Burdock which I can only describe as a grapey root beer flavor. I liked it!

The only thing I would've changed would be the seating arrangements. With more forethought, I would've asked to have several tables pushed together so that families would be united in proximity, not just by promise of marriage.
As it was, our family was seated in the back and so we didn't have free-flowing conversation with Dee's family and friends. People had to literally get up and move around to mingle, which, all things considered was not a big deal. I just like to be able to see everyone I'm having dinner with, whether one or nearly 41 people. I would have preferred that the parents and siblings all sat Ben and Dee's table, but Dee was seated with friends that she was leaving in 24 hours. That's very understandable. We'll have many more table times, I'm sure.

Dee's Grandma got to join us.

What a face, huh? She reminds me of the beautiful old woman, Rose, from the movie Titanic. Grandma Jean assured me that she was well-pleased with her granddaughter's choice for a husband. I told her that Deirdra is the first woman that Ben has ever kissed because he was saving that first kiss for the woman he planned to marry. I think there were tears in her eyes.

She also wanted to know how he got so tall because I obviously didn't contribute genes for height. I pointed to my very quiet, 6'4" hubby at the next table and said the height genes came from his side of family. "I contributed the gift-of-gab genes."

This last picture is of our family, the last night with Ben as a single man. I really like this picture.
Joel has obviously decided that his tie was a burden (or maybe Paul saw it as an expensive napkin and removed it out of wisdom?). But he is smiling in the crook of his big brother's arm. I may have just tickled his cheek for good measure.


Lea also known as "CiCi" said...

Well, Zoanna, none of the pictures showed up. What's up with Blogger? So aggravating! I'll check back tomorrow and see if it fixed itself. Happy Spring!

Zoanna said...

I have been more aggravated with Blogger with this post than any in my 7 years of blogging, Lea! I have loaded and lost pictures, reloaded and had them load sloooooooowly, loaded and seen them show up as only a little red X in a frame. The pictures I took on my csmera and the soda can shot are loading okay on my computer. The ones Ambrey took (much higher resolution) are also showing up but losding slowly. Sorry. Maybe it'll work tomorrow for you.

Carrie B said...

I don't see them either. :(

Maybe it's an 'out of storage' issue?

It's totally irritating though, I feel your pain.

Have a great day!