Midsummer’s Eve


In a perfect world, my sister and I would be in final preparations for our brilliant and highly anticipated annual Midsummer’s Eve party. We would spend tomorrow hanging paper lanterns and possibly a single crystal chandelier in the trees, moving sofas, chairs, and carpets onto the lawn (because really, is there anything more whimsical than indoor furniture used outdoors?), and baking a multitude of summery treats. All while fending off phone calls from Martha Stewart, of course, who would be desperately seeking an invitation…

In reality, we only gave that party once, about ten years ago, under the pecan trees in the front yard of my sister’s beautiful old Victorian house. We had the paper lanterns and upholstered furniture and lots of beautiful food. We even remembered (barely!) to send out invitations. One guest (a gracious Southern lady in a gorgeous white straw hat) gushed that our party was “just so F. Scott Fitzgerald,” so we apparently succeeded in creating the magical evening we were going for, even before Pinterest was around to inspire (Pinspire?) us.

But somehow, we only did it one time. Maybe the second year would have been a letdown, and it’s better to remember that one, perfect, magazine-photo-shoot-worthy party. Maybe the next year it would have rained, and we would have been forced to move everything indoors, where white straw hats would have seemed slightly ridiculous and the whole affair would have become just another summer get-together with lemon squares. Although, to be fair, my sister’s lemon squares could make any occasion pretty enchanting…

Maybe someday, we’ll revive the party. Maybe it will become the social event of the year. Maybe we’ll relent and invite Martha, after all.

But tomorrow, another Midsummer’s Eve will come and go, and there will be fireflies in the trees instead of paper lanterns. All upholstered furniture will stay safely indoors. There will not be white straw hats or lemon squares. Well, there might be lemon squares.


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