Saturday, October 21, 2017

Friday: Preparing for the Prayer Gathering

I am so glad I took the day off today to prepare for the prayer gathering!  Had I left it all for tomorrow, it would have been too much!

Once again, even though I went to bed at a fairly reasonable (for me) time, last night, I couldn't fall asleep until after 3:00 a.m.  When my alarm went off at 8:00 a.m., I could have got up, but I decided to sleep!  I slept for my full 8 hours, but that meant I woke up after 11:00 a.m.!  By the time I had a cup of coffee, checked e-mails, watched some news, etc., it was after 12 noon.  I spent a little time making my To Do list and feeling slightly panicked at all what I had to do!

Eventually, in the afternoon, I made my shopping list and went to one shopping mall where there were two grocery stores and a dollar store, because I had things I needed to buy from all three stores! 

Prayer Gathering Shopping (10/20)

First, I went to the dollar store to buy a packet of paper plates, a new broom (not pictured), and a disposable foil pan (for the cashew curry I am planning to take to the temple).  While I was there, I saw that they had the thin asparagus stalks I wanted, so, I bought 2 bundles. Spent $5.39 at the dollar store.

If I had thought a little more clearly, I could have bought the soda from there, but I didn't think about it - I had it written down on the list for the other store!

Dollar Store Receipt

Then, I went to a grocery store called Smart & Final - they are a bit like Costco, but there is no annual membership fee (I let my Costco membership lapse).

I bought the majority of the rest of the items on my list from there:

3 bottles of sparkling apple cider, @$2.99 + $.10 deposit = $9.27
(poor planning on my part because, sometimes, the dollar stores carry them, but I am not going to fret about it, now)
2 2-liter bottles Pepsi, @ $1.89 + $.10 deposit = $3.98
(again, if I had thought a little more clearly, I could have bought the soda from there, but I didn't think about it - I had it written down on the list for the other store!)

2 2-liter bottles Shasta @$.99 + $.10 deposit = $2.18
1 bag potato chips = $2.99
2 bags beef meatballs, @$8.99 = $17.98
1 box (40 count) mini cream puffs assortment = $5.99
1 gal. milk = $2.99
Drinks and Food Subtotal =  $45.38
2 potted plants, @ $14.99 =  $29.98 + tax ($3.43) = $33.41
Total = $78.79

I decided to buy the frozen meatballs, instead of beef, because it is easier to cook them than cutting the beef for a beef curry.  

The two red anthurium plants are for the mantle piece, to place on either side of the altar, because, in addition to roses, anthuriums were my mother's favorite flower. 

Smart & Final Store Receipt

I didn't see any dip for the potato chips at this store, so I went to the other grocery store to buy some dip ($1.89) and I bought another container of the passion fruit cocktail ($2.39), as well (since I drank some of the other one I bought, earlier!).  Spent a total of $4.28.

Grocery Store Receipt

Altogether, I spent $86.18 on items for the prayer meeting, not including the $1 for the pan for the temple and $1 for the broom, the taxes on them and the $.10 I paid for one reusable plastic grocery bag at the dollar store.  I estimate that tomorrow's groceries will come to less than $20.

After I came home, I had a late lunch - tuna sandwich with a handful of the chips!  Then, a cup of tea. 

My friend M came to do the garden and he broke the cobwebs in the family room and washed the sliding glass door for me, before tidying up the front garden.  After he left, I started cleaning the house.

Living room - dusted and vacuumed
Dining room - dusted and vacuumed
Family room - dusted and vacuumed
Hall way - vacuumed
Visitor's bathroom - cleaned again, including washing the walls! (Yes, I went overboard with the cleaning, there!)
Kitchen - vacuumed, counters have been cleared; will do final cleaning after cooking, tomorrow
Laundry - bath mats washed

Saturday's Must Do List:
- Warm up the cashew curry to take to temple
- Make the flan
- Hard boil the eggs
- Pick up friend
- Finish grocery shopping (fresh produce and yogurt)
- Set up altar (friend will do)
- Put the table cloth on the big dining table
- Family room - clear table
- My bathroom - clean
- Clean the litter box

Other Items to do:
- My bedroom - tidy
- Daughter's bedroom - tidy; make up bed for friend who is staying the night
- Spare/visitor's bedroom - CLOSE THE DOOR!  It's a dump!

Today, I am grateful for:
- Friend M cleaning the cobwebs and the sliding glass door for me
- My cousin calling and offering to help with any cleaning I need done, tomorrow
- Getting most of the grocery shopping done
- Getting most of the house cleaned
- Feeling well enough to do what I did today

Tomorrow is going to be a busy day.  I am expecting approximately 15 people to attend the prayer gathering.   They will get here between 7:30 and 8:30 p.m.  Prayers will be said around 9:00 p.m., once everyone has arrived.  Dinner will be served afterwards, around 9:30 p.m.  I want to finish most of the cooking by 7:00 p.m., although the chicken can roast until 8:00 or 8:30 p.m.

How was your Friday?  Did you have a good day?


  1. You're very well prepared Bless. It sounds like everyone attending the gathering will leave having been well fed.
    Don't overdo things tomorrow and try and take some time out to rest before the gathering. And don't forget to close that door. 😉 X

    1. Thanks, Jules. I always make too much food, but that's OK. No one will leave feeling hungry!

      Yes, I'll try not to get too tired, tomorrow. And will definitely close that door! :D

  2. Good thing you're already on a late schedule because not eating until 9:30 pm would be late for me. That's when I'm thinking about going to bed. As Jules said, I think you're well prepared so remember to relax a little.

    1. We tend to eat fairly late - usually around 8:00 p.m. on week nights. Parties are always later than that! Quite often after midnight. Which is why we serve lots of hors d'oeuvres or "short eats" as we call them. :)

  3. Nice your friend is staying the night. You have your dinner well covered so now enjoy!

    1. Yes, she will help me with some of the cleaning up, afterwards.

      Yes, taking a break in between things. I have my schedule all written out and there are plenty of breaks, in between. :)

  4. Sounds like the beginnings of a great success. Like Jules said, be sure you are rested so you can enjoy your gathering.

    1. Thank you, Anne. I basically have all the cleaning done, except the bathroom. All the tidying up can be done later (or bedroom doors can be closed - people don't usually go into the bedrooms, but they can be see when they go to the bathrooms). Going to concentrate on the cooking in the afternoon. :)

  5. When I am thinking of you, dearest Bless, I first go to check the latest shared status on your social media, and if nothing pops up, I head back to your faithful blog posts.

    To my utmost dismay, I realized I had hundreds back log! I will not read them all, and I am so thankful that you keep your end of the communication open for us to share in our days.

    I am in awe at your consistency and attention to details.

    May your gathering bring you peace and joy and blessings for the days and weeks and months to come!

    With love ~

    1. Thank you, Otir, so glad to hear from you, again. Sorry, I haven't been posting a lot on FB, lately. Hope all is well with you and your sons.

  6. I love the shut the door on the guest room it is a dump. You and I are so alike it is scary. Still giggling...

    1. Ha, ha, it really is a dump! It is where I dump things when I want to clear the rest of the house in a hurry and then, things tend to stay in there and it becomes a storage dump! Glad to have given you a giggle. :)

  7. I'll be right over to pray and eat! just did a great job buying...very generous...your food will be wonderful. Good luck! Andrea

    1. You'll be most welcome, Andrea. I might even ask you to say a decade. :)

  8. My 12 year ld granddaughter understands the concept of the dump room when you want to clear away quickly. She was telling me recently that she was really pleased to have found her suede ankle boots. 'Where were they?' I asked her. 'In the bottom of my "don't know where it is" box,' she told me. She explained that it's where she puts everything from her bedroom floor when Mum tells her off for an untidy room!

    1. She sounds like a girl after my own heart, Eloise! :D

  9. Great to see how well organized you are, even down to remembering to close the door on the dump room! It will be lovely to have a friend stay over, as I always think that it is good to have some discussion after an event, to further enjoy it. I hope it will be every bit as wonderful as it sounds.

    1. Thank you, Bushlady. Even though I tried to be organized, I left a little too much for the end, but that's another blog post! :D I'm very grateful to my friend; she helped a lot!

  10. Best wishes for a smooth event to enjoy. Is it appropriate to take pictures for daughter and your fans to better understand? For processional devotees all wear white garments? What color is appropriate?
    Lots of different dishes for guests to enjoy, I now have to count the number of dishes prepared to make sure they all get to table! To often I've found some side dish left behind in the fridge or counter.

    1. Hon, we normally wear white to temple and for most Buddhist events such as almsgivings. It is also our color for mourning. White represents purity.

      I usually post the menu on the fridge door, but didn't do so this time, and my friend who was helping was saying she missed it! But nothing got forgotten, so that's good. :)


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