The Perfect Dinner Party Hostess Gift

It’s not often that I write about what a charming, gracious guest I am. I should though because then more people would invite me over and I would bring them the perfect hostess gift and they would spread the word and I wouldn’t be able to handle my social calendar. I would get a driver to take me to all my engagements.

Last night was the 2nd Annual Dinner Party and Badminton Fete. You may remember the original from last year. Last night was also a rollicking good time. We really need to get video of the badminton match, it is powerful sports activity.

I didn’t have anything to bring because I’m not very organized and I hate going to the grocery store. And it has been hotter than balls so I don’t have any energy due to the lack of central air conditioning at my house. Not one to walk into a party empty-handed, I decided on my new go to hostess gift….Powerball tickets!

I bought a ticket for the hostess and each of the guests. Happily on big Powerball nights or maybe all the time, there is an Oregon Lottery person at the kiosk to help those, who like myself, have never bought lottery tickets before. The jackpot was $442 million last night so I gave it a go. Who would be the most popular guest ever if they come to dinner and oh by the way here’s millions of dollars, too. That’s right, ME.

I also brought an agreement with me for everyone to sign which stated that we all agreed that if one of the tickets won, we would take the lump sum and divide it equally between the six of us. I received kudos for thinking ahead and being so legally responsible, then I promptly signed my name on the wrong line.

We didn’t win the Powerball. Some guy in Minnesota did, along with a couple of other winners in New Jersey.  Oregon has only had three Powerball winners.

BUT….what would you do if you did win the Powerball?!?

I thought about it and I couldn’t tell anyone. I would have to call an attorney and my financial guy and talk to them about how to handle that sort of windfall. I would initially create trusts for each of my kids for college and whatever else life throws at them. Trusts that they couldn’t touch till I said so.

I would buy this house in Portland.

MLS # 13273244
MLS # 13273244

I would buy one of these two houses in Gearhart:

We stayed here when I was a kid and now it has been remodeled and I love it.
We stayed here when I was a kid and now it has been remodeled and I love it.

or this one, which is not old but looks old.

scanlanhouseNeither one of these houses is for sale so I’d have to make them an offer they can’t refuse. You can see them on

I would definitely quit my job to work on my new houses and on fundraising work.

I would definitely make large donations to Hopewell House Hospice, where my mother passed away and to Portland Rescue Mission. I would give my siblings each $1 million dollars unless I won hundreds of millions and then they would each get $10 million and so would Mitch.

I would get this car:

2014 Volvo XC70.
2014 Volvo XC70.

I would buy a ridiculous number of purses from Tiffany Leather Goods. I would have a breast reduction. And have my feet fixed (I have bunions).

What would you do if you won the Powerball?

13 thoughts on “The Perfect Dinner Party Hostess Gift

  1. I’m calling for a DNA test. I am sure you are another of MY daughters. Our tastes are so similar in houses. Only, I wouldn’t be caught DEAD in a Volvo. 🙂

    Like you, we are serial house junkies but I am always on the hunt for one (or two) more. Some say a gal can’t have enough shoes. I say a gal can never have enough homes. Love your choices.

    Here’s where the first portion of my PowerBall winnings would have gone.

    I’d buy a share in Netjets so I wouldn’t have to bother with hoi polloi when traveling.

    Hubby wants a few attachments for his tractor.

    I’d hire a personal chef, Asian, perhaps Thai or Japanese, to keep me in lemongrass and coconut milk.

    I’d give the largest share (anonymously, of course, the only way to truly be generous) to the wives of the Hotshot firefighters killed in Prescott Arizona.

    Our kids already have it pretty good so I’d hold off on giving them anymore until I kick the bucket. Incentive for them to stay on my good side!

    That’s it…for now!

  2. I will happily be your daughter and live with you in Greenwich. What an amazing house! Did I tell you that I started following the Hooked on Houses blog? LOVE!

    My dear ol’ dad would be greatly distressed that his daughter is driving a Volvo…GREATLY but I can’t help myself, I love that car. I will never have another car. At election time I make sure there are Republican stickers on it so no one gets the wrong idea 🙂

    You could be my mother because she always would have fits about people donating with their names on the gift. “it doesn’t count if everyone knows you did it.”


  3. I threw scratch-off tickets instead of a bouquet at my wedding, and the winning guest only recouped $8 of the $20 we spent. Boooooooo. But I’ll just assume all the luck went into our marriage instead of the tickets!

    Here’s a horrible thing that exists: fake winning lottery tickets. We gave one to my brother-in-law once, and the way his gleeful reaction turned to despair when we told him the truth was so heart-breaking that I’ll NEVER play that practical joke again.

    Now, to answer your real question: I’d quit my job, write full-time, buy a ton of gorgeous land, fence it all in, rescue approximately a million stray puppies, and hire a full time trainer to teach them manners (and care for them while I traveled the world). 🙂

  4. JackieP

    Now that’s a nice gift, especially if it’s a winner. I would donate to as many no-kill animal shelters that I could. Then I would buy a nice house with lots of land and let it go back the way nature wanted it to be. That way I could watch animals as they should be watched, in the wild. I would have a garden with all the plants that would encourage birds, butterflies, and bees to come to.

    Then I would build me a best studio with windows all around so I could write and paint to my hearts content. As I have no children and my family doesn’t talk to me, I would give random amounts of money to people who really needed it, anonymously of course. But I would be someplace I could see the joy they get out of having help.

  5. First, I’d change my my cell phone number, email address, and disconnect my facebook, to avoid all the golddiggers. Then I’d hire a lawyer and financial planner and have them put all but $5M in a fund that would give me 5% interest to live off for the rest of my life.

    With the $5M, I’d do all sorts of irresponsible things, like building a wine cellar, buying a house in Florence, and hiring a personal hair stylist. I also love Jennie’s idea of a puppy ranch! It’s fun to dream, right?

          1. No, no Maggie. Don’t you worry. I’ve got this one covered. I’ve got two pairs. Yes, two. I rock. (Someone told me that they saw a someecard thing which said, ‘”Oo, those Crocs are nice,” said no-one, ever.’ I think that is a bit harsh.)

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