August 21, 2017

Who’s Invited to Your Fantasy Dinner Party?

I like to store answers for ice breaker questions. Maybe it’s the introvert in me, or maybe it’s because I like to have goods answers. I don’t know. But one answer I’ve been cooking up for a while is: who is one my fantasy dinner party guest list?

The general rules are:

  • Choose five to eight people
  • They can be living or dead, but not fictional
  • They can be on your list for any reason — you think they’d be fun at a dinner party, you want to pick their brain, etc.
  • Choose what’s on the menu

For the sake of this post, I’m going to change up the rules a bit. I’m adding the qualifications “living and female,” and I’m completely throwing out the idea that I’m cooking any sort of meal. And let’s be honest; as an introvert, there’s no way I’d want to meet these women all at the same time – no. One-on-one is the only way for me.

So without any further ado, here’s who made the list.

Taylor Swift

I became a Swiftie the day I saw the “Tim McGraw” music video on the CMT Top 20 Countdown. Taylor’s lyrics and country vibe resonated with me, and I was completely hooked. I constantly stole my friend’s CD to listen to her first album on repeat. Then came Fearless, and I stole that one from my cousin. When Speak Now came out, I got the deluxe album for myself, and played it through my senior year of high school. I bought pit passes to see her on her Speak Now tour, and purchased every album since. I think she’s beautiful, wonderful, and a lyrical genius. As a writer, I just can’t get enough of her style. Just so happens that her songs are catchy too.

Taylor Swift is on the top of my list of people to meet in life. Now that she’s a pop princess, I don’t think it’s likely to happen. But in another world, where superstars meet simple writers like me, I’d just want to chat about our cats, the things she’s learned, and about being brave in the face of adversity. And maybe, if I could ever muster the courage, I’d play her a song I wrote – because she’s the one who inspired me to pick up a guitar, strum a few chords, and sing the things I didn’t know how to say.

Where We’d Go: For Spring Rolls & Pineapple Curry at Siam in Lewisburg, PA

Lauren Akins

Lauren Akins is who I want to be in the world. Happy, contagious, sweet, and full of life. She’s got a beautiful marriage, two beautiful dogs, and now, two beautiful daughters. There’s something about Lauren that just radiates, and the more I follow her on Instagram, the more I desperately wish she could live next door.

Lauren loves Jesus, cares deeply about orphaned children, and has awesome adventures. She loves Christmas, Harry Potter, and Hawaii. Not to mention that her relationship with Thomas Rhett is something out of a storybook, and I absolutely admire it. He wrote Die a Happy Man for her, and they starred in the music video together. Their connection is undeniable. She is the kind of person I want in my inner circle – or at the very least as a dinner guest.

I’d love to talk to Lauren about life things – about marriage, about family, about dogs, about what being a mom is like. I’m not sure I’d care what we’d talk about because she just seems to be one of those people you’re grateful to know. And dinner would be a great chance to get to know her.

P.S. I’m pretty sure I was at the concert where this picture was taken. I’m somewhere just above the blurry faces behind her.

Where We’d Go:For Honey BBQ Wings at Old Trail Tavern in Liverpool, PA

Joanna Gaines 

I like my fair share of HGTV. But after we binged a season or two of Love It or List It, it just felt like a drama scheme. More of the same. I was over it. But then we found Fixer Upper, and I couldn’t get over how much I liked Chip and Joanna. It wasn’t long before I was a fan, and started to pick up everything they produced. The Journal, the book, and even an attempted trip to the Silos (a migraine held me down, but I had a friend get me a mug – I plan to go back someday!).

Joanna is a brilliant businesswoman but more importantly a beautiful person. I’d love to talk to her about her farm, her animals, her kids. I’d love to show her around Englewood and tell her about all the things we plan to do to our home, all the things she inspired. All the antiquing places around Central PA would be right up her alley.

Where We’d Go: For rustic feels and a Salmon Wrap at Selinsgrove Brewery in Selinsgrove, PA

Christy Wright

When Spencer told me about Christy, I knew I would like her. She spoke at a conference he attended, and talked about the 40 acre farm she rented right out of college. Sounded like my kind of woman. Spencer recommended that I follow along with her through Business Boutique, so I did. I listened to her new podcast. Then I bought her new book. Then I took her consulting class! And guys, Christy is my girl.

She is so full of energy and practical wisdom. I’d love to talk to her about my business ideas, public speaking, and of course, about what life is like as a Dave Ramsey personality and Nashville resident. And I’m sure, at some point, we’d get around to talking about horses and that 40 acre farm. We both talk fast enough.

Where We’d Go: For chips, salsa, and tacos at Taco Queen in Sunbury, PA

Gal Gadot

I’d seen Gal Gadot in the Fast and the Furious franchise, but didn’t think much of her. That is until she started showing up as Diana Prince; until I saw Wonder Woman. That movie is now in my top ten, but it’s not why she made my guest list. It’s her ferocity, sweetness, national pride, and unwavering confidence. There’s something about Gal Gadot that makes me want to be the best I can be, to kick butt in all scenarios, but to be wildly feminine at the same time. Who wouldn’t want to meet her?

I’d love to talk to her about Israel, the Sabbath, acting, making movies, and fitness. I think we would have a fun time and I would just be in awe of her. There is no question in my mind that if there is a Wonder Woman out there, it’s Gal Gadot.

Where We’d Go: For Tom Ka Soup & Pad Se Ew at Thai Palace in Camp Hill, PA

J.K. Rowling

Photo by Dan Hallman/Invision/AP, File

I only became a Potter fan within the last couple months, but I fell all in. As a writer, I can’t help but admire the work that J.K. Rowling has created. In fact it was my biggest reason for finally reading the stories. I wanted to know – what is this story that has captured the world by storm?

Well, I’m hooked, and I’d love to take J.K. Rowling to the nicest place in town, to talk about writing, stories (particularly hers), and about the boy who lived. Maybe some of her magic would rub off on me.

Where We’d Go: For a delicious seasonal selection at Char’s in Harrisburg, PA

Who would you invite to your fantasy dinner party? Would you want to eat one-on-one or all together? What would you cook or where would you go? Share your own invite list and meal plan in the comments!

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  • Brenda Righter

    Some good food for thought here … pun intended. 😉 I think many of my dinner guests have already left this world but I’m gonna give it some thought. And since I LOVE a good dinner party, I think I’ll stick with your original rules and have them all over at the same time. Stay tuned …

    August 22, 2017 at 6:41 pm Reply
    • Paige Engle

      Yay! Share your post in the comments whenever it’s live!

      August 24, 2017 at 11:43 am Reply

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