A couple of weeks ago we were invited to a Cocktails & Canapés fundraising event at a good friend’s house, to take place in her garden on a balmy Summer’s evening in July.
Whilst this all sounded rather wonderful, there was one obvious obstacle – the state of the garden!
Overgrown with weeds, the fence had also partially fallen down and broken glass from the old greenhouse littered the gravel.
Clearly, a lot of work was needed to tidy up the garden enough to make it a relaxing and pleasant environment in which to spend an entire evening, so all hands were on deck to muck in and help.
Her eldest son and her father-in-law (in the background) set to work sprucing up the tired garden furniture with a few coats of suitable paint or oil.
Didn’t they turn out well?
The derelict octagonal aluminium framed greenhouse had lost all of its glass and weeds had long since replaced the tomatoes.
A parasol whose pole had broken made the perfect weatherproof roof for the greenhouse which, with the addition of some fabric panels and bunting, was transformed into a fabulous cocktail bar!
Mr. H-L did a great job of fixing the fencing and strengthening the ‘bar’ worktops, and the bunting from my gazebo at home lends a celebratory air to the area.
The Boy’s black/white board served as a useful stand for the cocktails menu.
The bar was stocked with all manner of ingredients and accessories, all essential elements in the strive to make the perfect cocktail.
Several seating areas were created to form conversational groups.
Hedges were trimmed, lawn was mown, gravel was weeded and finally, after more than a week’s solid hard work, this is the result!
The evening kicked off with a glass of bubbly to set the mood.
Our hostess served the most delicious homemade canapés throughout the entire night.
The Boys even had a whole platter to themselves!
As dusk gradually fell, the garden filled up with guests, all eager to sample the fine food and drink on offer.
Our host found his calling as cocktail inventor supreme!
The best Cosmopolitan I’ve ever tasted….
…and a totally dangerous Vodka Martini were just a couple that we tried throughout the night.
The atmosphere was amazing, helped by neon lighting around the bar and numerous candles and lanterns dotted around the garden, and disco tunes from the 70s and 80s that were playing through an ad hoc speaker system.
No.3 Son eventually collapsed about ten thirty, curled up cosily under one of my crocheted blankets and fell fast asleep until we left after midnight.
No.2 Son lasted the distance wrapped up in another of my blankets, but slept in until gone nine the next morning.
A brilliant night was had by all and we were delighted to find out that over £350 had been raised for the cause – and what better way to get your garden done than to set yourself a tight deadline of a garden party and ask all your friends to help?!
Might have to try that……