Our favorite event each year is always the Holiday Party we host for Alliance of Children’s Rights at the Community Coalition in South LA. Last year we made Vegan Pumpkin Risotto (RECIPE HERE), and this year we made Sweet Potato Latkes keeping with the squash theme for our cooking station.
My friend and very talented pastry chef, Jules Exum helmed the Cupcake Station for the littles. She was very spirited in teaching the children how to make little florets. They got into it! No surprise with Jules leading them.
Our friend Chef Roy (Chopped Champion, that’s right!) also came out to help with the cooking station. Several young men texted Matt after this event asking for the recipe which is about the best thing ever knowing that they are finding an appreciation for cooking.
It’s shocking to see how fast these little nuggets grow up year after year!
My friend Summer put together a potting station where guests created cactus plants to take home. Summer had collected tons of clippings and pots from different neighbors of hers, so everyone at this event got to make a very lush and eclectic arrangement to take home. Summer also had a bake off for the 60 basket take aways and tied encouraging notes to them.
My friend Mazz donated this entire manicure station. Everyone loves pretty nails! Since Mazz couldn’t make it to the event, I asked other friends to volunteer for this station. Thanks Crystal and Beatrice!
Burts Bees donated lots of their lip glosses so we could have a lipstick station which we’ve done the last couple of years thanks to celeb make-up artist Katey Denno.
Our very own Kasey and April from our office swooped up all kinds of supplies to make up a really fun art station where kids made flags to take home. I loved seeing all of their interpretations of color and textures.
Dinner gets served! Premier Meats donated 20 whole turkeys as well as bones to make the gravy. We had a feast!
There is always lots of extra food so everyone gets to take leftovers, which is essential for Thanksgiving of course.
AWESOME PEOPLE came forward to donate to an Amazon Wish List I put together for these baskets. Every single item in these baskets (and they were gloriously loaded up!) were donated. It was so heartwarming and humbling when packages came in the mail to make these baskets. Complete strangers donated, as well as dear friends and lots of people in between as well as Weleda who donated so many products to go into these 60 baskets. You can see how appreciative the guests were. It’s always the best moment ever to see how community has the ability to impact each other. Giving is as powerful as receiving.
These friends here asked to have this photo taken with Matt and I… and their baskets.
I think this little flag sums the day up. Thank you to all the many people who helped make this event happen. With all the familiar faces and some sweet new ones, it felt like a really warm family gathering, which is a testament to all the many people generously contributing their time and donations. For this one day, all worries and pains got to be left at the door as many hugs were exchanged, bellies were filled up, and we all showed up in togetherness.
Photos: Kimberly Genevieve