One of the greatest gifts in life is sharing the joy of friends as they celebrate milestones. Thelmanne McGaughey is one such friend. Her influence and many gifts as an educator have helped shape literally thousands of lives over the years. Thelmanne’s warmth, genuineness, zeal for life, compassion and gorgeous smile make her a “people magnet”. I first met her after she had officially retired about 13 years ago, but while substituting several months for a teacher at my children’s school. A close friendship quickly ensued, and a group of us who regularly socialized together was given the name, Joy Girls, by Thelmanne’s Mother, Ruthie Fleming. Actually this term was coined in the 1940’s by her Mother and several of her high school friends who actually belonged to such a group as ours!
The bonds of friendship run deep with Thelmanne and Michelle Plagenhoef (shown below) as their families have been friends for decades.
After Matthew, Thelmanne’s son, became engaged to Andrea Bullard, the Joy Girls began making plans to help with the rehearsal dinner as well as to honor the couple with a wedding day brunch. Janet Loftin and I assumed responsibility for decorating Dothan’s downtown venue, The French Quarter, for their “Great Gatsby” themed dinner. This charming venue with its exposed brick walls, ornamental ironwork, and walled courtyard exemplifies typical New Orleans architecture.
Below Thelmanne enjoys a few quiet moments with her adorable granddaughter, Radney Miller, in the courtyard after the bridesmaid’s luncheon.
Although the courtyard needed very little enhancement, a rustic iron tree with covered with Eleagnus and Nandina foliage was centered on the courtyard’s stone table while a simple arrangement of magnolia and hydrangea in a rustic iron basin anchored a pedestal table.
Guests enjoyed dressing in vintage 1920’s style fashions to carry out the bride and groom’s chosen Great Gatsby Theme.
Floral arrangements composed of vintage hydrangea, white hydrangea, roses, magnolia, Nandina, variegated Pittosporum, Cryptomeria, and miniature white pumpkins were used in the dining area.
Kelsey Barnard Catering provided a sumptuous feast of classic Southern favorites. http://www.kelseybarnard-catering.com/home/
What a joyful night of celebrating love, new beginnings and remembering that “The better part of one’s life consists of his friendships” – Abraham Lincoln
Congratulations, Matt and Andrea!