Will's Cummings jumping past hurdles into new honors

Yvonne Delaney Mitchell | 5/17/2012, 11:30 a.m.

As a couple, the Bakers were known for hosting fabulous parties at their Englewood estate. The mansion was always festively decorated, depending on the season. Of course, there was always a scrumptious buffet with an equally delicious array of desserts. Musical entertainment sometimes included a live band.

I recall one New Year's Day gala where I wore a long black taffeta skirt. I loved that skirt. Unfortunately, I only wore it once and can't imagine where it could be now, though I doubt it would fit anymore.

Another party was held in late August. It was early evening and everyone was lounging around the pool when the mood turned from fun to somber as news of Princess Diana's death spread across throughout the house.

Personally, after watching a news clip of Princess Diana touring a war-torn country in Africa and holding a little African girl whose legs were blown off when she stepped on one of the bombs planted by the enemy throughout the countryside where she was playing, I became a huge fan of the princess. I remember thinking, she's a princess, why would she chose to go to Africa, where she could possibly step on a bomb herself? I was so inspired by her when I learned that she was spokesperson for the American Red Cross (ARC) that I decided to take some courses with ARC and learn more about the operation.

The party soon ended after that and it was to be the last party I ever attended at the Baker household. However, I never forgot their warm hospitality and generosity.

Oh! You will never guess what I found? Wedding dresses, beautiful but slightly worn, at Housing Works located on Broadway between 96 and 97th Street. Some were so gorgeous it made me want to get married all over again. They also had shoes and elbow-length lace gloves to match. The prices were unbelievably low at under $100. And when I think about what I paid for my dress; I had the hardest time finding shoes and bridesmaid dresses. Yes, they even had bridesmaid dresses.

Now it may not be your ideal place to shop, but for the bride on a budget it's good to know you can still look like a million.

Until next week...kisses.