Dine In, Help Out: The Day After

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Many of you have kindly sent your your encouragements to me during these Dine In, Help Out days, and so this is my final report back to you: it was a good and right thing to do.

Because the fact is that you can spend as much time as you want casting spider webs aside or watching Nick edge new stones into the garden. You can wonder obsessively if the yellow callas detract from the rust callas, if you have any business attempting appetizers, if you are just plain out of your mind for inviting two of the area's top business leaders and their beautiful women into your very modest home. You can wonder and you can worry, and then 6:30 comes, and there's no going back: the party finally begins.

It's not really, in the end, the food that makes a party (thank goodness). No one takes a tour of the garden and judges the stone work. No one searches for spider webs, or if they do, it frankly doesn't matter. People make a party, and last night I had the privilege of introducing two men to each other who share so many things—a talent for dreaming big and acting effectively on those dreams (these men build companies; they build legacies), a distinctly philanthropic lean, a transparent commitment to the families they have built, an abiding love for their fathers, and so much shared interest in farming ways that a good half hour of talk gets given over to the egg-laying-business of chickens.

These men also have incredibly good taste in women, and toward the end of the evening, MA asked if I might talk a little a bit Dine In, Help Out, this May-long initiative sponsored by St. Christopher's Foundation for Children. It's pretty simple, I said. Philadelphia-area residents are inviting friends to dinner in their homes throughout the month of May and encouraging those friends to contribute whatever they might have spent on a restaurant meal that evening to the Foundation.  The Foundation in turn is channeling those funds into a Farm to Families program focused on bringing affordable, nutritious food to North Philadelphia, the nation's second hungriest congressional district.

It's all thanks to my friend, Jan Suzanne Shaeffer, who has a heart the color of her very golden hair and who never works in the abstract. She cares about the plight of North Philadelphians because she has taken the time to make them her friends. She is doing good because good is her passion, her happy gift. I'm hugely uncomfortable in any fundraising role, but I did this because I believe in Jan and I believe in this cause.  I have worked way outside my comfort zone, these past few weeks, and I can't tell you if the food I cooked was any good because I was too nervous to eat it. But because of Jan I had, in last night, an evening I'll never forget.


Anna Lefler said...

Oh, yay! Of course your party was a smash - there was no doubt!

Lucky, lucky guests...

So cool that you did this, Beth. Now it's time to kick back and enjoy Mother's Day...



Q said...

What did you make, that you worried so much over it?

And of course it went well, you silly dear. You were involved. :)

Tracy Golightly-Garcia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tracy Golightly-Garcia said...

Hello Beth

Glad to know all went well and raising money for a good cause is a good thing.

I am like Q--what did you cook?

Take Care

Tracy :)

Liz said...

I'm so glad it was a success, and for such a wonderful cause. Kudos to you, and Happy Mother's Day!

  © Blogger templates Newspaper II by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP