Growing up in the Hospitality State of Mississippi, I was raised on the principles of gracious entertaining, polished silver, starched linen, and recipes handed down through the generations.
Even though it’s been more than two decades since I lived there, my Southern roots run as deep as the memories of my Mississippi grandmothers. At an early age, my grandmothers taught me all about throwing parties for family and friends. Grandmama Mary Wallace hosted us each year for the most thoughtfully planned Thanksgiving weekend. I still have one of her carefully crafted seating charts. I loved hearing her talk of her upcoming party plans, such as a neighborhood ice cream social, complete with a barbershop quartet.
As a child I also spent hours sitting in the kitchen of my other grandmother, Lady B, while she made steaming pots of Gulf Coast seafood gumbo for Christmas dinner and heaping batches of pimento cheese for our family reunion — neither with a recipe and never prepared exactly the same way twice. As I grew-up, my passion for entertaining continued. While attending Vanderbilt, I made meals and party food for our events at the Tri-Delta house and served as the Hospitality Chair for many extra-curricular groups.
When I arrived in Washington, DC over 20 years ago, I worked on Capitol Hill for my hometown Senator and later on the Senate Appropriations Committee. After that, I lobbied on telecommunications, energy, and homeland security policy issues. But all the while, I found my true joy in helping friends throw parties. I spent my weekends as a caterer and party planner, hosting countless bridal and baby showers — each time picking up tips and learning first-hand lessons about how to plan every detail.
Finally, after nearly 15 years of moonlighting as a caterer and party planner, I have chosen to embrace The Party Bee as my true career.
While it’s the people who make the party, it’s the attention to detail that makes an event truly memorable. I approach every party as if it were my own celebration. I use recipes from my collection of Southern Junior League cookbooks, rely on the recipe boxes handed down from my grandmothers, source items from the best specialty food stores, and present it all in a way that feels comfortable and elegant. Working with each hostess’s own style and vision, I bring my collection of entertaining pieces, linens, and special touches together to help achieve the perfect setting for your event. This is what I like to call “authentic entertaining.”