Posted by Geoff Barcalow
So we get the list of who, what when back in January and we are supposed to host in March. So, February flies past in no time, and I look at the calendar and I'm like what the heck, it's already 10 days into March and I haven't even reached out to the group to whom I am to host. So I send the first email and we begin the arduous task of coordinating schedules. We have vacation, they have vacation, I have work they have lessons. Seriously!?!? So our February dinner fell through and so our first experience is going to be as hosts. It's okay, if we can feed our extremely picky young ladies, we can feed 6 adults who may or may not have food allergies or dietary restrictions. Well, I guess I have to send that email too.
Somewhere in the middle of all this I realize that the dinner isn't really supposed to be scheduled until April. I'm not late I'm early, w00t! And suddenly this enormous weight is lifted, the Hal breathing over my shoulder kinda weight; (we kid because we care). 

So we settle on April 26th, sure its only 5 days after we get back from China, but Grandpa has already committed to babysitting. We can't turn back now. We get back from China, a day late because our flights were delayed and we spend the next few days re-syncing our clocks and debating what to prepare for dinner. We settled on yakisoba and pot stickers.
The evening of the event comes, and it's time to take the girls to Grandpa's but of course, the dance shoes (for Tap class) cannot be found. Too much time is lost looking for the shoes and we now have to deliver the girls directly to dance class instead of grandpas. I know this isn't about dinners for 8, but it happened on the same day and I hurt my back so just bare with me on this tangent. So, no shoes at the dance studio. We are looking through the box of loaner shoes and I'm bending over looking for the right size. After what seemed like 20 minutes we have a pair of acceptable but not perfect (because what else would a 6yo expect from a box of abandoned shoes). I stand up and something in my back goes "DONT YOU DO THAT" and I did it anyway. Something pinched and yeah, the rest of the night was uncomfortable (physically, not because of the company). And the next weekend was my first change in a month to do some yard work because we'd been in China and that was basically out of the question at this point. So, back to the dinner.
Randy and Laurie are right on time, Jill and Tom are right behind them within 5 minutes. So, we're just waiting on Tom B and his wife. So we're waiting, and waiting and waiting. 30 minutes passes and we decide to reach out, and he is completely unaware that we are having dinner. We offer to wait and he generously declines. So we have a lovely dinner and great conversation without him. The salad and cobbler were fantastic. We had our own wine and beer from Wet Coast (it shares a parking lot with the dance studio ;). It was a great evening.
Now, this isn't exactly Tom B's fault though. Somewhere back in March, he had fallen off the email chain. It was Myself, Jill, Randy and Tom (but it was Tom with an S) on the email chain. And, since everyone including Tom S replied to all my emails I never went any farther into the addresses to make sure it was actually the correct Tom that was replying. Live and learn I guess.
So that's my story; cheers to your next dinners for 8.
Geoff B