Having a WFE Novel Gathering?

Here are some Book Boutique tips for making Water for Elephants a great get-together and book discussion.

Set the Scene.  Got a kids pop up tent?  Place it on top of the table and pin back the zippered doors.  If you do not have a tent, put a white tablecloth on the table and cut strips of red ribbon to make stripes.  Tape up a clown on your front door.  Remember you are the ringmaster, a top hat and tails would be fine.  If possible, make the decorations red and white with dashes of yellow or blue.  Have some red throw pillows or red and white blankets draped over chairs and the couch.  Now is a good time to create a bench for seating, even bring in folding chairs.  Don't forget to raid your kid's bedrooms.  Have any stuffed animals collecting dust?  Bring them out.  Be creative.  How about music? There are plenty of "circus" themed music on youtube.  Tape and play them.

Food.  Inside the tent have candied apples on cake tiers.  Put out a mixutre of corn on the cob, some peeled, some not.  Baby corn still in the jar and some on a small plate.  Popcorn - many flavours of popcorn.  I love caramel corn but any flavour you like would be great.  The dollar stores holders labelled popcorn and they are red and white!  If you cannot find these, simply buy brown lunch bags and roll down the tops a few times.  Buy mini donuts but serve them in wax paper bags.  Have a sifter with extra powdered sugar so you can sprinkle the area on the table that will house these.  For the "smell" of the circus, roast some peanuts.  Don't forget hot dogs.  Even the "pigs in a blanket" would work just fine here. Have bowls of animal crackers and pretzels set up all around.  How about snow cones?

Caramel Corn


1 cup butter

2 cups packed brown sugar

1 tsp salt

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla (optional but I love it)


Preheat oven to 200 degrees F.  Over medium heat, combine first 4 ingredients and boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in baking soda.  Stir well.  Pour over 8 quarts popped corn.  Stir to coat well. Bake in large roaster or pan for 1 hour stirring every 15 minutes.  Spread on waxed paper to dry.  

recipe from Paula Deen

Let us not forget something to drink.  Of course you need to have lemonade.  Pink and yellow with freshly cut chives and lemon and limes.  How festive!  If you like, and we do, have some jake on hand.  I would go with vodka but watever jake gets you going...go for it. Keep an empty liquor bottle and make a prohibitions whiskey sticker.  Remember; if you are going to throw a party to empty a few liquor bottles invite us...we will help you get ready too!


A Blue Train

1.  Fill a cocktail shaker halfway with crushed ice

2.  Pour in the brandy ( 6 oz ) and pineaple juice ( 1 cup ) and 2 drops of blue food colouring.  Cover the cocktail shaker and shake vigorously for 20 seconds.

3. Strain the mixture evenly into two chilled champagne flutes.  Top each with champagne of choice.  Garnish with an orange slice, pineapple, cherry and umbrella.  Best served ice cold!


Pink Elephant

1 oz cranberry juice ( more if needed )

1 oz berry vodka

1/2 oz raspberry liqueur

1/2 oz limoncello

Directions.  To a shaker full of ice, add all ingredients.  Shake well and pour into chilled martini glasses.


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