April 2010 archive

A Carnevale Celebration and Giveaway!

Looking for an excuse to host a get together or searching for some Italian party ideas? Today we are teaming up with Bertolli Frozen Meals sharing a few easy Italian party recipes along with your chance to win a GRAND Carneval celebration giveaway!

You know Bertolli, right? Their frozen Italian dishes offer luscious Italian experience in the comfort of your own home- simple, just how I like it!

As you may have already heard, Bertolli Frozen Meals recently launched a new series of webisodes titled “Into the Heart of Italy: Six Adventures, Three Celebrities, One Mission… To Unlock the Secrets of Italian Passion for Food and Life.” In this episode, celebrity chef Rocco Dispirito and actors Marisa Tomei and Dan Cortese celebrate the Italian festival of Carnevale, ride a shrimp boat, and cook a Garlic Shrimp, Penne and Cherry Tomato dinner. Check it out:

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Since none of us are likely to be setting sail for Italy, we thought we would bring the Italian Carnevale to you! We are giving you all the chance to host your own Italian celebration inspired by this episode. We have all the goods you’ll need to host your ow party. We will send one winner a gift valued at $115. You can enjoy your Bertolli Frozen Meals for dinner then finish the celebration in true Italian style with homemade gelato, Italian espresso and the sounds of contemporary Italian music.
One winner will receive prize valued at approximately $115:

· Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker

· Bialetti Espresso Machine

· Two Crate & Barrel Espresso Cups and Saucers

· iTunes Gift Card with Suggested Contemporary Italian Playlist

· Two VIP coupons for a Bertolli Frozen Meal for two that will transport you to Italy in just 10 minutes

To Enter:

Watch the webisode (above) and comment about your favorite scene in the video and answer the episode’s clue.

For additional entries:

Follow @Bertolli and @HostessTori on Twitter and tweet:

I’m going to host an Italian Carnevale celebration once I win the @Bertolli giveaway from @HostessTori http://ow.ly/1EXTO

Contest is closed. Thank you for entering!

Good luck everyone! Contest ends May 5, 2010 at 10:00 pm PST.

Rules/Disclosure: All entries for the giveaway must be located in the US. Thoughtfully Simple did receive a prize package to review for this contest.

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Baby in Bloom | Spring Baby Shower

This baby shower theme screams Spring! Hosted outside, this spring baby shower had a fresh and carefree feel to it. We knew the mom-to-be loved bright green so, it was paired with bright orange which created a fun twist on typical baby boy color palette. Perfect for a boy or girl themed shower– this theme would work great for any occasion.

Let’s start with the centerpieces, shall we?

The centerpieces were white rectangular boxes filled with a form of moss. Vibrant orange Gerbera Daisies looked as if they had sprouted from the lush moss.

The orange flowers popped from the green moss just perfectly!

Above the table hung white, orange, and green tissue pom poms. These are my favorite go-to party decor item. They can be used to create a dramatic touch and are so cost effective and easy. The total cost to make these tissue poms was under $10 and took about 20 minutes. Simple!

The placemats were green gingham 12×12 pieces of scrapbook paper. Scrapbook paper is a simple way to tie in color and make great DIY table placemats. The water bottles were covered with labels that read “Baby in Bloom” and set at each plate. The napkin rings were also made from scrapbook paper; orange strips secured with tape. The favors were wildflower seeds wrapped in a hemp bag. Each bag was secured with a bow of twine and had two tags, one on the front and on on the back. On tag read “Baby in Bloom” and the other had a scripture on it that related to nurturing a baby, which was perfect!

A couple other decor touches.

A wishing tree hosted a momma bird and her nest of baby birds. Guests wrote mom and baby a wish on a tag and then hung it on the tree.

Even though this was a spring baby shower theme, these colors and decor ideas could easily work for a garden party, bridal shower, etc. Thanks to Kaci, the guest of honor’s sister for the amazing photos!

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Unique Margaritas for Cinco de Mayo

Looking for Cinco de Mayo drink recipes? We have 3 unique unique margaritas that are sure to please!

These classic margaritas will quench your thirst! I know, water will too– but these are way more fun.

recipe via Real Simple

The name of this margarita makes me giggle on it’s own, forget about the tequila consumed in drinking it. For a fun twist, try this prickly pear margarita.

recipe via My Sweet and Saucy

I like oranges, I think this margarita is yummy. Try a blood orange margarita (with ginger). Let me know what you think.

recipe via Food and Wine

You might also like these unique fruit margarita recipes!

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A Modern Safari Themed Dinner, for the Ladies!

The Modern Safari Themed Party {a night in for a few special ladies} was designed by Chris Nease of Celebrations at Home. I love the unexpected pink zebra stripes used here to pull off a modern feel.

See that pink zebra tablecloth and backdrop? Chris used a patterned sheet- proof that inspiration can be found anywhere!

These ceramic animals add the perfect safari flair. They are simply spray painted white to match the modern decor. A cocktail table was set up with a mosquito netting hanging above, and lemonade/lemoncello cocktails were set inside of a small suitcase.

A few more details. See the safari animals hanging from the glass? It’s all in the details! I can see this theme working perfectly for a bridal shower or baby shower as well.

You can see more photos of this modern dinner party over at Celebrations at Home. Thanks for sharing Chris!

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School Themed Baby Shower

This school themed baby shower is clever and stunning. I have been meaning to share this post with you for a while now- sorry for holding out! Whitney Smith put this fabulous shower on for her friend, a teacher of course! Check out these smart details:

Chalkboards offer a simple yet creative flair to party decor- fitting for this school themed shower.

Great idea for an inexpensive centerpiece. These would be perfect for a school themed graduation party as well. Books + Paper + Ribbon = thoughtfully simple centerpiece!

Love these vintage over sized flashcards hanging as decor, don’t you?

The water bottles have that simple apple stamp design like the ones on the invitations. Ties together perfectly!

Like the cafeteria, only classy and with good food.

The individual cartons of milk are perfect!

Brown bags to go!

Thanks again to Whitney Smith for sharing this great school themed shower! I immediately began thinking of a pregnant teacher I could host this for- darn, none come to mind :).

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Day of the Dead Wedding

This unique themed wedding came to be via Eva with Catalyst Ranch, a one of a kind wedding venue in Chicago, IL. Catalyst Ranch tends to cater to couples who are fairly eclectic and really do some unusual things and this couple –Martha and Julio, don’t disappoint. Here are some great shots of their Day of the Dead themed wedding.

This photo of the bride and groom swinging makes my heart flutter.

Did you notice the Bride’s red shoes? LOVE them!

The bride handmade these Day of the Dead cookies herself!

Okay, I could go on and on posting photos of this unique wedding- but I’ll stop here. Visit Jeremy Lawson Photography to see the rest of these gorgeous images from Martha and Julio’s wedding. Thanks to Eva and Catalyst Ranch for sharing this one-of-a-kind event with us!

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