Belle of the Ball

My brother-in-law was given the position of Potentate of the Shriners in the Alabama area. My sister, Jackie, invited my family to go to the ball in his honor. I asked her what to wear and when she said "formal" all I could think of was the cost of a formal gown. But then she told me I should wear the gold dress that I wore to my daughter's wedding in July of last year. Wonderful!

I felt like Cinderella when I tried that dress on. It has a gold underskirt with a gold foil over it. The bodice is an overlay made of gold thread which looks like it is crocheted. A crocheted sweater of the same delicate thread is worn over the dress. I found gold shoes which look like ballerina slippers and a cute little purse that matched. I felt wonderful at the wedding in it but when I wore it to the ball, I felt I finally had attended a prom (which I hadn't in high school).

The Alcazar Shriners started off Friday night with a buffet style dinner (which was really great). After the meal Randy (my brother-in-law) thanked everyone for honoring them with our presence. He then said "Forty years ago we were blessed with a little girl. Tonight we would like to say Happy Birthday to her." Out walked my nephew with an over-the-hill cake with forty candles blazing.

I became excited and grabbed my camera case strap which was on the floor near my feet. The strap was hooked onto the coil of my shoe (ZCoils) and I couldn't get it off. I lifted my foot up to my husband and asked for help. He couldn't get it off either so he took my shoe off. I grabbed the camera out of the case and hobbled over to Shelly's table to snap pictures. Of course by then the candles were blown out. She asked me why I was limping. I told her about the shoe episode and she laughed. Back to my table Steve is still struggeling with my shoe. It took him 30 minutes to get the strap off of the coil.

Shelly, Steve, my sister, Sue, and I were sitting at my table by this time. Sue asked if I could take three baskets home with me since we were driving and they were flying back to Iowa. (Sue, Nancy, our cousin, and I were given gift baskets for coming to Alabama to the ball.) I asked Steve what he thought as our car was pretty packed. He said "Oh, we could probably get more organized, or if not, we could always wrap the handle around your shoe!" Everyone got a laugh out of that. Then Sue said "Wait a minute, she has two shoes! That just leaves room for one more basket!" Ok, you guys are really funny, "I suppose you want me to carry the third one around my neck!" "No," my husband said, "one of your shoes could do double duty!" Sue told me "Kathy, this is going to go down in history like the celery and cream cheese!" Ok, that's a story for another time.

We had a great time Friday night. My family had rooms at the Drury Inn just a few blocks away. The place was fantastic and breakfast was included (scrambled eggs, french toast, sausage, bacon, fruit, yougurt, and make your own waffles...yummy!) Saturday afternoon took us back to the shriner hall to watch the presentation of gifts. Shriners from all over the South came and presented beautiful gifts to Jackie and Randy. Of course, there was another buffet to eat and drinks galore. It was a fun time for everyone. At one point a shriner was going from table to table taking pictures. I grabbed my purse off the table and went to put it down by my shoes when I jerked to a stop saying "Oh!" Sue noticed it and said "It's ok, Kathy, you have flip flops on, not the ZCoils!" We both got a laugh out of that.

Back to the Drury Inn to get ready for the ball. When we entered the hall, there was a huge moon lit up in the first room. It was beautiful. My sisters and I all collect moons because our mother's maiden name was Moon. We signed in and entered the main event. Oh my word! The whole room is decorated with little sparkly lights and there are moons here and there. The stage where the band will play has an even bigger moon behind them.

We went through the buffet to get our food and when we walked back to our table, it felt like a scene out of a movie. The room was dark except for the little sparkles everywhere. After everyone ate, Potentate Randy and his Lady Jackie walked down the center aisle to be presented. It was so beautiful. All of the visiting Potentates were presented with their wives. I truly felt like I was at a prom.

The next event was Randy and Jackie's grandsons coming down the center with white roses for their NaNa. Beautiful. And finally, dancing! Jackie and Randy led off and I can't remember the name of the song but it's a slow one that says "You're my Lady". It was so touching, Sue and I had tears in our eyes. I love to dance but because of my back injury, I was only able to dance one slow song with my wonderful husband, Steve.

The couple who sat at our table clogged to a fast song. He had clogging shoes on and the taps just rang out to the beat. That was fun to watch but the couple who took the show was an older couple (I'd say in their 80s, atleast) who danced like a dream. They had taken dancing lessons togther and he whirled her around and dipped her. You could tell they loved each other and their movements were perfect.

Time to tear up again, Buddy is dancing with his mom (Jackie), then again later when Mike dances with her. Jackie has been through a long battle with her health. She fought and won breast cancer, then breastbone cancer, congestive heart failure, a hip replacement, surgery again when the rod in her hip broke in half, she is one little fighter. She needs to have shoulder surgery but that was delayed when her colon burst. The doctor said he nearly lost her four times. She has struggled from a wheelchair to a walker, then to a cane. She fought hard so she could walk down the aisle with Randy with no walker. But she did it! I am so proud of her.

Although I felt like Cinderella that night, Jackie was really the Belle of the Ball. She is Randy's lady and he is her man. He still calls her his bride, although they have three grown kids and many grandkids. What an example they set for the rest of us! Halfmoon

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absolutartist1 said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful time. I could only wish my husband still thought of me as his bride...


Anonymous said...

I so wish I could have gone. :o( I'm glad you had fun mom! You guys deserve it! I love you!

suzz31 said...

You did look beautiful at the ball I was there too.. Enjoyed the whole weekend with my two sisters. Sue