I'm sure most of you know that my husband works for a charity for the homeless. I'm sure those of you who do know that also know that for the last 18 months or so he has been working as the North of Scotland manager for this charity, which takes him north to Aberdeen 3 nights of the week.
The charity has been up and running down here for nearly 30 years and so is well established, but up in the north east it is just beginning to make it's mark. Part of my husband's job, as well as managing the facilities for service users, is to spread the word about the work of the charity amongst local churches and also businesses.
Almost a year ago a local business man offered to fund a charity ball. His company would meet the costs of the evening and all the other money raised at the ball would go to the charity.
So for the last 9 months my husband has also had party planner added to his list of responsibilities!
The ball took place on Saturday and of course I had to buy a new frock! This proved somewhat harder than I had thought it would though, as it seemed impossible to find one that didn't scream harlot!
In my head I had two ideals - either something in the style of Downton Abbey or in the style of glamorous 50s housewife. My first few shopping trips uncovered neither, but instead every dress was too low, too short, too clingy, to sequin-y, just too wrong really!
On my third, and rather half hearted trip to shops (I think the influence of living with all these males has coloured my desire for shopping somewhat) I found a dress where I least expected to.
It was the 50s style that won the day. What the photo doesn't show is that there is a net petticoat lining which gives it that lovely 50s flare.
As the ball was in Aberdeen it meant an overnight stay for myself and my Prince Charming. My brother's wife had offered to have the boys over to stay, which was great. I wasn't in the least bit concerned about the older three boys who have had sleepovers with their cousins before, but this would be my first time leaving Alasdair overnight. I'm sure another thing my blog readers know is that he doesn't sleep very well! I wasn't so much worried about how he would be with his Aunt and Uncle, but I was a bit concerned about imposing a sleepless night on them! My sister in law assured me that she could cope with it fine, knowing that I would be back in the morning and she could have a full nights sleep the following night. By all accounts my brother slept through everything anyway!
The ball went very well. There was a lovely atmosphere on the night. An auction of great donations half way through helped raise a good amount of money.
At the very beginning my husband was called out to the front and presented with a huge birthday cake. It was a big surprise for him and the only part of the evening he hadn't planned.
There was also a short film shown of the work the charity does which was an excellent idea. It had interviews with some of the service users and I think this had a big impact on a lot of the people at the ball, who have never really considered how these people get into the situations they find themselves in. Someone mentioned to me that before watching the film she had been so prejudiced and always assumed that it was their own fault and down to drink or drugs, where the film reminded everyone that the number one reason for people finding themselves homeless is actually a relationship breakdown.
The film was done by the small production company who filmed us test driving a car back in the autumn for Gaelic TV. They were a great contact to have made and provided their services free of charge. It was nice to catch up with them at the ball, as they were the only faces I knew!
Normally I would have been snapping pictures all the way through, but we had been invited to sit at the table with the main sponsor and his friends for dinner and somehow it just didn't seem right. Plus, the man I was sitting next to kept the conversation flowing so much that I didn't get a chance!
I had hoped to get a photo of me and my Prince Charming (who was most handsome in his kilt), but it just didn't happen. He had collapsed into bed, relieved that it was all over and had gone so well when I tried to get a photo of me in my dress to share with all my blog friends.
But taking a full length photo of yourself is nigh on impossible without a full length mirror!
So just use your imagination a bit and picture the missing bottom half as a flared out 50s style dress completed with some killer black suede heels at the bottom.
As this was taken at around 2am my curls have gone a bit flat too!