Our Spring Brunch potluck yesterday produced several firsts for Maples at the Sonatas. We had our largest turnout ever for a social event—42 people. Planned and hosted by our sales team of Kathy and Carol, it began as an expanded version of our monthly Coffee and Conversation and grew into a sprawling, sociable gathering that overflowed our seating capacity. But everyone was having such a good time that no one seemed to mind.
When our social committee bought folding tables and chairs a year and a half ago, we thought that seating for 12 more people would be enough for a while. Well, it wasn’t yesterday. Carol and Kathy ate brunch standing behind the breakfast bar. Of course, that did put them right by the food, which was also in danger of overflowing its space on both levels of our breakfast bar. A neighbor tried pulling a bar stool up to the pool table when we literally ran out of chairs, even with the office chairs.
And what a bounty of food it was. Breakfast casseroles of several sorts, biscuits and gravy, bacon, ham, and potatoes were just the beginning. Several fresh fruit salads, homemade breads, pastries…. Well, you get the idea, and I’m only making myself hungry trying to describe it. It was a feast worthy of a cookbook, and it might just produce one. Numerous requests for recipes led to the idea of a collection of recipes to share—and a volunteer to organize them.
Also for the first time, we wore nametags to help old and new alike. Just first names wouldn’t do either, with three Bobs present. And another first, we Carols—with a variety of spellings—finally outnumbered the Bobs.
In addition to homeowners, we also had more visitors than ever before. An owner’s daughter and an owner-to-be’s brother were more than welcome, but it was the new owners who truly swelled our ranks. Last month we met three new owner couples. Yesterday their number expanded to include, I believe, seven people who haven’t closed on their homes yet but will in the next few months. It was fun watching budding friendships form as people mingled and found common interests.
This infusion of new people brings us a variety of talents, as well as neighbors willing to pitch in. We have picked up a new member for the social committee, a new worker for our community garden, more help with the swimming pool, and a volunteer to put together a neighborhood directory.
Yes, we assured the new owners, we really do get together like this the first Saturday of every month, though the large potluck is a quarterly event. At our other coffees, you don’t even have to bring anything because the pastries are generously contributed by Wilcox Communities. And yes, you really will receive a free flat of annuals to plant around your home at our Flower Power coffee next month.
So we laughed a lot yesterday. Then something happened way at the end that nearly moved me to tears. A new neighbor of maybe three months said to me, “We are so blessed to have found this community.”
She was exactly right. I thanked her for reminding me.
Finally, if you are reading this and want to join us, don’t worry. We’ll be happy to squeeze you in.
The “Carols” pose for a picture that is representative of our gathering yesterday. From left, we have Carolyn, who is under contract but hasn’t closed; Carol, who sold the home; Caryl, who qualifies as an old owner because she has been here two years; and Carol, a new owner who moved in a couple of months ago.