On Saturday we were invited to three separate get-togethers: a lunch visit with friends we hadn't seen in a very long time, even though they don't live too far from us; a dinner at my cousins' house because they will be away on Cape Cod for Christmas; and an evening get-together at our neighbors' house, who dropped the invitation on us just a few days before it happened, which is typical of them, but we try and make an effort to show up. Since the last of the three was going to start at 8pm and it was stated that all the other kids were going to one of the other neighbor's houses with a baby-sitter (poor girl), we opted to put Gus to bed and take shifts at the party, which was right around the corner. We did the same thing on New Year's Eve last year and it worked out fine.
Cue me, taking the first shift, slightly after 8:00 because we had just gotten home from visit #2, but no one is ever on time to parties at this house anyway, and I brought Greta with me figuring everyone wanted to see her and the husband said it was ok to bring her along. I walk in (because this is one of those just-walk-in houses) and I'm greeted by a sea of faces looking at who's interrupting their party, or so it seemed because everyone was already there in their COCKTAIL DRESSES and suits and ties. Pardon my shouting, but I've never been so embarrassed in my whole life.
Again, there's me: out all day with two kids, jeans and a sweater (nice but not cocktail attire), hair in a disaster bun, had a baby 6 weeks ago (not that I'm out of shape- I'm surprisingly in shape, but my pants still don't quite fit). In a sea of black and red and heels and makeup and jewelry. I managed to get out of there in under an hour, citing Greta's fussing/need to be fed (because oh, yea, I brought a baby with me), promising to send the hubs back for his shift. The hubs refused to go. First, he didn't want to put on a suit and tie and second, he was in disbelief and a little bit angry. He said, "You should have said something like, 'I didn't realize it was a dressy party,'" but when you are deer in the headlights, your brain doesn't always work properly.
So please, do me a favor this holiday season: if you have a party, please inform the guests of the proper attire before they make an ass out of themselves in front of people whom they don't necessarily know well, and if you go to a party, make sure you look just a little extra nice just in case.