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01/02/2012 - Welcome to the home of Social Lights. Read new online reports with photos each week and their reprise in the monthly print edition mailed to homes in Birmingham-Bloomfield at the start of each month. If you are not receiving the print edition by mail, you can order a subscription in the upper right index at the top of this page (subscriptions). If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.

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BBAC's Shop & Champagne

The Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center's holiday sales show got off to a rip roaring start at the annual Shop & Champagne preview party. The food is a big attraction at this party (see generous restaurants in photo gallery) which attracted 350 art lovers to shop, sip and socialize. So is first dibs on the selection of giftables handmade by more than 100 artisans. Jewelry is always a hot seller, and this year many shoppers were also drawn to the felted wearables and pottery, including tableware by Birmingham artist Laura Host's daughter Meredith Host. Complimentary gift wrapping and a 10% sales discount also encouraged shoppers. Thanks also to generous sponsors, the evening raised more than $40,000 for the non-profit art center. The winter schedule of classes at the BBAC gets underway on Jan. 9 (register online at ) and on the second Sunday of each month, a series of drop-in workshops is held from 1 – 4 p.m. There is also a free workshop for seniors sponsored by Home Instead at 11am-1:30pm on the second Tuesday of each month. With a resource like the BBAC in the community there is no excuse for not exploring one's artistic creativity.

Christ Child Society Christmas Home Tour

More than 600 people went on the Christ Child Society's tour of five splendid homes decorated for Christmas. Most tourists also stopped at Birmingham Country Club to lunch and chat about the homes. They ranged from Jo Coleman's sleek, new Birmingham penthouse whose two kitchens make it perfect for entertaining, to Susie and Bob Ufer's 1920s stone colonial filled with exquisite antiques overlooking the Rouge River. Also outstanding were: the Christmas-everywhere approach, from the themed trees and tablescapes to the workout room in Valerie and Brad Ahlgren's French-inspired home; the vintage elements, especially the staircase, in Lauri and Marty Lemire's comfortable Bloomfield Village Tudor, and Christine and Dave Provost's casually elegant  colonial with its perfectly hand stenciled dining room walls. The club staff kept the buffet well stocked for self serve dining. Before or after lunching guests also crowded around the booths stocked with goodies by 20 vendors who reported good sales. Event co-chairs Mary Dakin and Christine Provost were thrilled with the success of the event that raised $30,000 for the society's work with at-risk children. Much of that work occurs at the Christ Child House where members will begin the celebration of the society's 100th year in Detroit at the annual Twelfth Night Reception on Jan. 7.

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