December 29, 2011

Birthday Party Idea #1: Red & Chocolate!!

Every year I try to pick a different theme for my birthday. This past year it was 'Mardi Gras Meets Masquerade Ball' themed and this year I have a couple of themes I am choosing from. I will post a couple of ideas I have been inspired by through witnessing many similar party themes. Last night I had an epiphany and I thought "All Things Red". To have a red-themed party would be amazing since red is one of my favorite colors...even more amazing would be the incorporation of my favorite form of candy: CHOCOLATE. Looks like Chris Nease from Celebrations at Home was thinking the same thing!

To find out more details on how she made her Red & 'Chocolate' party come to life click here!

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Capture the Moment: Videographer

In one of my lessons I preach "Capture the Moment". Besides snapping photographs, one of the best ways to capture the moment at your event is to have a videographer. The first time I witnessed the benefits of a videographer was at my friend's wedding, Party of the Month: Wedding by Mindy Weiss pt.2 , where the videographers gave out a DVD of the wedding and it was simply amazing. I have found yet another great company, Mew Films Video , to help you capture the moment at your next event.

Jason + Garyfalia: Wedding Highlight from mew films on Vimeo.

My favorite thing about Mew Films Video is how they focus purely on the beauty of the event. The love, the laughter, the friendship, and bond of family are portrayed in each film that they create. Check them out when thinking of filming your next special event!

December 23, 2011

Wishing You A Very Merry Christmas!

I absolutely love dressing up my food and candy bars with cute themed printables. The printables I used for my Holiday Party were from Bird's Party called Christmas Candyland Party Collection.

I hope you find a way to enjoy your holiday season!!

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December 14, 2011

Drinking Games!

With the holidays fast approaching, I am sure many of you are hosting or attending an ADULT Holiday Party. Be the "Life of the Party" by introducing some fun ways to entertain yourselves with a brew in hand. Alcohol Stuff is a great site for some quick ideas on some drinking games! Note: This is only for those ages 21 and up!

Seasons Greetings!!

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December 7, 2011

Recipe of the Day: Candy Cane Cocktails

Getting ready for a Holiday Party and want to serve a great holiday drink? There is nothing that represents the holiday season more than good old candy canes...Candy Cane cocktails!

Check out this recipe for a tasty Candy Cane Cocktail courtesy of Martha Stewart!


* 1 candy cane, crushed, for garnish
* 2 ounces strawberry vodka
* 4 dashes white creme de menthe
* 2 1/2 ounces cranberry juice
* Ice cubes


1. Place crushed candy canes on a small plate or saucer. Wet the outside rim of a chilled martini glass with water. Holding the glass by the stem, rotate the rim to coat with candy.
2. In a cocktail shaker, combine vodka, creme de menthe, cranberry juice, and ice; shake until well combined. Strain into prepared glass; serve immediately.

Happy Holidays...
drink responsibly!

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December 3, 2011

Christmas Wonderland Themed Party

This Friday I had the pleasure of hosting an anniversary party to celebrate 6 months since I started an amazing Meetup group called, Young, Black, and Beautiful in Seattle. The theme was Christmas Wonderland and it was held at Joey Restaurant in Lake Union! Check out all the cool decor I created below! All decorations are courtesy of Party @ Display & Costume and ROSS!

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November 30, 2011

Favorite FIND: Real Life Candyland Party

Ever been APART of a party? I mean, actually PLAY a part? Well, guests who attended this Candyland party definitely participated. How you might ask?! The creators of today's "Favorite FIND" turned their party into the famous BOARD GAME; "Candyland"--LITERALLY! Click on the image to get a better, larger view.

Picture taken from: MJ Decorations


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November 24, 2011

Recipe of the Day: Thanksgiving Turkey Cupcakes

It's not too late to make your Thanksgiving food contribution! Below is a quick and easy recipe from Taste of Home to make the greatest Thanksgiving Turkey cupcakes!


* 1 can (16 ounces) caramel frosting or frosting of your choice
* Cupcakes of your choice
* Caramels
* Dots candies, candy-coated sunflower kernels and Sixlets candies
* Wax paper


* Frost cupcakes. For each turkey, unwrap three caramels; place on a small piece of waxed paper. Microwave on high for 5-7 seconds or until softened. Break off desired amount for the body; roll into an egg shape. Roll two smaller pieces into wings and two pieces into legs. Press onto body to attach.

* For leaves, roll out Dots candies to 1/8-in. thickness; cut leaf shapes. Place a turkey on top of each cupcake; arrange leaves, sunflower kernels and Sixlets around turkeys.

Prep time: 2 hours Servings: 24

Enjoy! Happy Thanksgiving!

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November 23, 2011

How to Make a Dessert Table Backdrop

As I continue to learn how to create great parties, one of the skills I would like to hone is really dressing up every aspect of my party. An area of your party that definitely deserves the right amount of attention is the dessert table. I struggle to create the perfect backdrop that invites my guests to check out the dessert table so below are a few materials you can use to make your own marvelous dessert table backdrop!

To make a backdrop you can use any of the following materials:

~Foam-core boards
~Picture Frames

The great thing about most of these items is that they can be reused and you can find them at your basic craft stores such as Hobby Lobby and Michaels.

Foam-core boards

When using foam-core boards it is best to buy two and tape them together for a more dimensional look against the wall. This size should also be fairly large to give a more detailed look to the table. With the foam-core board, wrap it in any fabric or wrapping paper that matches the color scheme/theme of the party.I read from Frog Prince Paperie, that the trick to keeping the edges of the fabric on the board stiff, tight, and crisp is to use starch when ironing the fabric. To keep the wrapping paper tight around the foam-core board simply pull tight when wrapping the paper around the foam-core board!

Picture taken from: Frog Prince Paperie


There are two sides to a beadboard: One side is smooth, the other has the bead board grooves. This makes it a reusable item because there is more than one option for use according to Frog Prince Paperie. Paint the beadboard whatever color that matches the color scheme/theme of your party. To apply, merely tack it to a wall with finishing nails!

Picture taken from: Frog Prince Paperie


Another easy material to use is a canvas-preferably an extra large one to add a bigger visual. It's quick, easy, and reusable because all you do is paint it and voila! TIP: To make a really unique canvas, choose a design and upload it onto a canvas at Uprinting or Easy Canvas Prints!

Picture taken from: Frog Prince Paperie


Picture Frames


Measure out the wall space that will be against the dessert table. Determine the dimensions you would like to use to hang curtains as a backdrop for the table. Then, locate your local fabric store (for me it's Joann's Fabric) and cut out the perfect fabric to match the dessert table. Use a rod, nails, or tacks to hang up the fabric.

I hope these suggestions helped! Now, go out there and create the perfect dessert table backdrop!

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November 7, 2011

Favorite Party Item: Thank You Gift Basket

It is proper etiquette to thank a host for hosting their event you attended. For those special hosts who went above and beyond to make you feel very important, I know just the perfect way to say "thank you":

Wine Connoisseur Gift Basket

Whether the host loves wine, chocolate, fruit, or nuts, has a plethora of choices for you to choose from to ensure you get the host a gift basket that matches them.

Nuts & Chocolate Gift Chest

Traditional Teatime Basket

The gift baskets come in all shapes and sizes and different price ranges...some as low as $27.95!

Harvest Fruit & Snacks Sampler

You even have the opportunity to personalize the gift basket with a message that can be written on the ribbon. You can also write a special note on the card of your choice to be attached to the basket.

There's nothing like saying Thank you!

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November 6, 2011

Recipe of the Day: Smiling Scarecrow Cupcakes

I absolutely love watching the leaves change into beautiful red,orange,and yellow Fall colors! When I think of Fall I think of pumpkins, apple pie, hot chocolate, and scarecrows....smiling scarecrows ;-)

Smiling Scarecrow Cupcakes Recipe (courtesy of Land O'Lakes):



1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup Land O Lakes® Butter, softened
1 Land O Lakes® All-Natural Egg
1 1/2 cups applesauce


1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 cup Land O Lakes® Half & Half or whipping cream
1/4 cup Land O Lakes® Butter
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Pretzel squares*
Cinnamon graham cracker sticks
Chow mein noodles or pretzel sticks
Mini candy-coated chocolate pieces, chocolate chips, decorator candies or decorator gels, as desired
Candy corn
Chocolate sprinkles or licorice candies


Heat oven to 350°F. Place paper baking cups into 18 muffin pan cups; set aside.

Combine flour, baking soda and cinnamon in medium bowl; set aside.

Combine sugar and 1/2 cup butter in large bowl. Beat at medium speed until creamy. Add egg; continue beating until well mixed. Reduce speed to low; add flour mixture and applesauce. Continue beating until well mixed.

Fill each muffin pan cup 2/3 full. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely.

Meanwhile, combine brown sugar, half & half and 1/4 cup butter in 2-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat until mixture comes to a full boil (5 to 6 minutes). Cool 20 minutes; add powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat at medium speed until smooth and creamy. Cool completely.

To create scarecrow face, spread 1 heaping tablespoon frosting over 1 cupcake; place pretzel square onto cupcake to make top of hat. Place small amount of frosting on back-side of graham cracker stick; place below pretzel to make hat band. Insert chow mein noodles into frosting around hat to resemble straw. Make face using assorted candies, chips or decorator gels. Repeat with remaining cupcakes and decorations.

Store in loosely covered container.

*Substitute colored marshmallows such as toasted coconut, strawberry or chocolate. Cut off 1 end of marshmallow and press sticky end to graham cracker stick and onto frosting to adhere.

Recipe Tip
- If frosting becomes too firm while decorating cupcakes, stir in additional half & half until desired consistency.

- If you are short on time, use your favorite cake mix for the cupcakes; top with frosting recipe above and decorate as directed.

October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

This past weekend I got to host my first Halloween Party! Even with the limited space I had to work with and a couple restrictions, I still managed to pull off what people felt was a fun Halloween Bash. The key to tying together any type of Halloween decor is to add COBWEBS! The cobwebs really enhance that spooky, Halloweeny look. Check out the pics!

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October 23, 2011

The Dream Package

I have always wondered how Bride's who don't want to use a full blown wedding planner survive during their wedding...I mean after all, it is your BIG day so why burden yourself with additional responsibilities during your wedding? Of course, I completely understand wanting to have full creative control of your wedding. So, I stumbled across a solution...The Dream Package offered by RealTime Productions Event & Marketing Solutions.

Pictured: Brandon Roy (Portland Trailblazers) & Tiana Wedding by RealTime Productions Event & Marketing Solutions
Photography by: Fritz Photography

Taken straight from their website:

"The Dream is our version of a “Month-of Service” package - perfect for the organized couple who has already completed most of the wedding pre-planning and sees the value of investing in a Wedding Day Director to orchestrate the day allowing them to be guests at their own wedding. These services typically begin about six weeks before the scheduled wedding date".

Your Dream includes:
* Your personal Wedding Day Consultant
* Pre-Wedding Day coordination
* Wedding Ceremony coordination
* Reception Coordination (up to five hours)
* Wedding Day Emergency Kit

To find out more about the Dream Package and other packages RealTime Productions Event & Marketing Solutions offers, please call 206.264.7770 or email for a complimentary consultation.

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October 20, 2011

Party of the Month: McWhirter Wedding at Coquelicot Estate Vineyard

What do you get when you mix a barn, a vineyard, beautiful people, and love? You get this month's "Party of the Month": McWhirter Wedding at Coquelicot Estate Vineyard.

Earlier this month I had the pleasure of attending one of my sorority sister's weddings in Solvang, CA and I was blown away by the simple, yet classy and elegant decor done by the event planners at Coquelicot Estate Vineyard.

COQUELICOT, pronounced (ko-klee-ko) is the name “en Fran├žais” of the striking red poppy flower that graces the French countryside, as well as all the labels on the estates wines. The 58 acre vineyard is an organically farmed property in the heart of the Santa Ynez Valley and it was on the vineyard that the wedding ceremony took place.

While the vineyard was beautiful, some of my favorite decor was at the reception area right outside the barn where the main celebration took place. The wedding planners acknowledged that after the ceremony everyone would be full of energy ready to mingle so props like a photo booth and "Just Married" car sat outside the barn to keep guests preoccupied. Not only that, but a galore of amazing appetizers and beverages (wine, no hard liquor which is a good idea for a wedding) plus live entertainment awaited guests.

But, the decor inside is what topped all the decor! The bride and groom decided on elegant, classy colors: light purple, shades of pink, and dark silver. These colors were shown off inside the barn.

The best way to really describe all of the decor would be Country Vintage. From the elegant chandelier that dangled from the ceiling of the barn...

to the barrel tables..

to the cute gift bird cage..

to the dinner menu written out in chalk...

and much, MUCH more!

One thing I never miss at a wedding is dessert and staying true to the Country Vintage theme, the dessert table had a plethora of traditional country desserts including apple pie, chocolate chip cookies, and lemon raspberry cake to name a few!

People were definitely having a great time in the barn, courtesy of the onsite DJ. I am a firm believer that you should incorporate both a live band and DJ at your wedding; the live band to add that classy musical touch, and the DJ to really bring people out dancing on the dance floor.

All in all, the wedding was fantastic and the wedding planners at Coquelicot Estate Vineyard truly brought the bride and groom's vision to life.

*Many photos were courtesy of Scott Gibson Photography!

To find out how you can have a photo booth at your next event check out Thought Box Photobooth !!

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