Bravotv.com: What made you want to throw a poker party?
Emily Simpson: I’ve always loved hosting parties at my home, especially girls’ nights! After reconnecting with Tamra, becoming fast friends with Gina, and then being introduced to Shannon, Kelly, and Vicki, I really wanted to invite them all into my home for a fun girls’ night! I chose to host a poker party because I always love a good themed party and had just returned from Las Vegas with Shane. Shane and I had just spent a weekend in Vegas celebrating our 9th anniversary, so I had Vegas on my mind. I figured a Poker Party would be a fun way for us all to get together, play some games, and let our hair extensions down.
I was happy to welcome all the ladies into my home, showcase my hosting skills, and excited to introduce them to my mother-in-law, Pary, and sister-in-law, Shireen. I really enjoyed planning this whole evening and looked forward to spending time with the ladies and getting to know them better! Shane was such a good sport about the party being held at our home. He’s used to me hosting lots of parties and always obliges to me taking over the home with food and flowers and loud ladies. To make the party set up and evening easier on me, Shane took Annabelle (age 5) and Chanel (age 12) out to Chuck E Cheese during the duration of the party. My boys were asleep upstairs with the nanny. With the children all taken care of, I could concentrate on providing these ladies a fun night of food, drinks, and fun. And how cute were the custom Swarovski poker visors that Shane’s cousin, Jennifer (www.justjen.com), made just for the party?
Bravotv.com: Gina seemed to rub some of the other ladies the wrong way at the party. Did you feel that way, too?
ES: While I did recognize that Gina can get loud after a few drinks, I can totally appreciate how much she’s up for having a good time! She’s a party planner’s dream guest...eating, drinking, being social and having a blast! Gina was fun and she was gracious. She complimented me several times on how lovely the house looked, the food, the desserts, etc. She was so kind and warm to Shireen and my mother-in-law, which I appreciated immensely. I always love when my friends genuinely connect with my family.
Bravotv.com: What happened at the end of the night?
ES: As the party wound down later in the evening, all of the ladies had left except for Gina. Props to her, she was the last lady standing! She mentions that she never wants to leave, which is a compliment to me and my party-hosting skills! However, as she was about to leave my home, she was positioned right below the loft area, where Shane, my daughter Annabelle, and my step-daughter Chanel were sitting waiting for the noise to die down so they could get to bed. Shane had returned home with the children right before everyone was leaving, as the party ran later than expected. Gina continued to be loud and boisterous (she was having a great time!) however, and unfortunately she used a lot of foul language (she was joking around and having fun…it was not malicious by any means) and it just echoed straight up to the loft area where my children were. Shane became upset because he did not want the children exposed to that language and he yelled down from the loft area for me “to get her out of the house.” Shane has always been an amazing and very protective father, and I think his parental instincts kicked in hard. So I walked Gina outside and apologized for her quick exit, and she apologized for being loud stating to me that she had young children, so she understood.
Shane then explained to me later that prior to yelling down for her to get out of the house, he had asked three times before for us to be quiet and for her to watch her language because my children had retuned home and were upstairs. Unfortunately, due to the commotion of the party, no one had heard his requests, and I believe by the time Gina was positioned right under the loft and the F bombs reverberated their way straight up to where the children were, he became understandably frustrated.
I totally understand why Gina may feel insulted by what occurred. She had no malicious intent and came to an adult party to have fun and let loose… which she did! I provided alcohol and food and fun, and she partook in it all, as she should! However, at the same time I understand why Shane asked her to keep it down and then felt the need to yell down for her to leave. Lesson learned: No more parties on a school night!
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