Archive of ‘Celebrate’ category

Salty & Sweet Christmas Treat

It’s that time of year when we bake up a storm, cookie swap like crazy and make gift baskets for all of our friends and families. This year I tried out a new dessert recipe and it happens to make the perfect holiday party treat OR that something special for friends or colleagues.

What’s salty, chocolatey and festive? These Reindeer Antlers — yummy and cute!

 Sweet & Salty Christmas Treat


Pretzels and chocolate — is there a better combination? There really aren’t many things better than great chocolate and Dove totally has you covered. Click to sweeten the holidays with Silky Smooth Dove Chocolate.

Reindeer Antlers Treat

 Pair this treat with a small glass of milk and you have the perfect surprise for that after school snack (that is if you don’t eat them before the kids get home!).

Reindeer Antlers

Ingredients:

1 3/4 cups DOVE® Chocolate

3/4 cup M&M’S® Brand MINIS®

1 bag pretzel sticks, broken into various sized pieces

Reynolds® Parchment Paper

To Make:

1. Remove 3/4 cup red and green M&M’S® Brand MINIS® and set aside for decoration.

2. Line a baking sheet with Reynolds® Parchment Paper.

3. Melt the DOVE® Chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of boiling water. Stir the mixture as it melts. When mixture is shiny and smooth, turn off the heat.

4. Once all the chocolate is melted, dip the pretzel pieces one at a time and arrange them on the prepared baking sheet into an antler shape. Place the M&M’S® Brand MINIS® on each antler as it is finished.

5. Repeat this same process until all the antlers are finished.

6. Let the chocolate cool completely and get firm. You can refrigerate to firm the chocolate more quickly.

7. Once firm, remove them from the Reynolds® Parchment Paper.

8. If desired, wrap each one in a sheet of cellophane, tied with a ribbon or simply put them on a cookie plate.

Tip: Add red M&M’S® Brand MINIS® to form the red nose.

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Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Mars via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Mars.

Create a Cozy Christmas Breakfast with Pier 1 Imports

 

There is something so magical about Christmas morning that over the years, it has become my favorite time to entertain. Christmas breakfast at my home has two requirements: expect it to be cozy and come in your pajamas. I love waking up early and setting a cozy breakfast table and this year I’ve turned to Pier 1 Imports to help me master that Christmas-cozy look!

I picked up a few finds and quickly set a table that adults and kids will eagerly gather around. I used these faux pine cone branches as a table runner (which can double as mantle decor!) and set 4 tan linen placemats as a base.

Next I picked up simple dishes from Pier 1 Imports — red plates and white bowls. Also, coordinating red mugs will perfectly hold coffee and hot cocoa on Christmas morning! Inside each bowl, a simple gift tag that serves as a place card.

And to tie it all together?  Christmas plaid napkins which bring home that cozy feel (don’t you think?).

In midst of all the chaos (aka children squealing with joy) Christmas morning can bring, I challenge you to make a special moment of Christmas cheer. Here are a couple Hostess Tips to keeping things simple:

-Set your breakfast table the night before. That way you won’t miss out on any magical moments in the morning!

-Serve simple food. Present store bought donuts or muffins in a thoughtful way (like the cake stand above) and set out bowls of fruit in the center of the table.

-For heartier breakfasts, prepare rolls and  casseroles the night before. Then in the morning you can simply pop them in the oven!

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 Do you have any Christmas morning traditions? I’d love to hear them!

 

If it’s interesting, if it’s impressive, if it’s colorful and cute and one-of-a-kind—then odds are it’s probably from Pier 1 Imports®. After all, Pier 1 has been the place for unique finds for over 40 years. Our buyers travel the world’s major capitals and small villages hunting for the kinds of treasures you can’t find just anywhere—fresh and fragrant candles, exotic wicker, hand-painted dinnerware, gorgeous textiles and thoughtful hand crafted gifts. Find what speaks to you at Pier 1 Imports®.

Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Pier 1 Imports® via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Pier 1 Imports®.

Neon Volleyball Party!

I love that inspiration from a party can come on a whim. While playing volleyball lakeside recently, by husband mentioned it would be fun to have a volleyball party. Just so happens he has a birthday coming up — so …. why not we thought?

I had to throw in some NEON and make it a NEON volleyball party (you know, for good measure).

Thinking of hosting a neon party? I hope our invites and inspiration board inspire you. Because ….. if it isn’t NEON, it shouldn’t BEON.  :)

Neon Party

Nothing fancy here. Kraft paper cardstock and envelopes are a nice neutral contrast to the neon (and they reminded me of the sand at the volleyball court). A simple invite design for the “KCT UN-PRO Tour 2012” and some party details. I used neon washi tape to give the envelops a fun neon pop.

Here is the rest of the items I bought for he party. Since it will mainly be a bunch of adults playing beach volleyball …. there really isn’t much else to decorate. So, we thought we’d have fun with our outfits :).

For links to purchase the items check out my Neon Pinterest board. I’ll post picks after the party, they should be fun ones!

A look behind scenes (wedding + coffee, lots of coffee)

I’ve been quiet lately, but certainly not bored. My plate has been more than full … sort of like a buffet exploded on my lap, actually. I apologize for the lack of posts — though you seem to have kept occupied reading about summer cocktails, circus parties (an oldie but goodie) and how to make tissue paper pom poms — so that’s good :).

Here’s a few snapshots on what’s been keeping my busy and a little sneak peek at one very gorgeous wedding.

FLOWERS. They occupied my life for 3 straight days. Non-stop. My air conditioner that was set at 50 degrees can testify (dreading that bill!). I played wedding florist (first time for everything, huh?) and it was no small feat. With 150 guests and a large venue… we had a TON of flowers. Just picture, 11 bouquets as a starting point. Boy, I’m glad that’s over!

DIY galore. Painting, staining, building, crafting, gluing …. pretty much up until it was time to get hair and makeup done. Oh, did I mention I was the Matron of Honor? Wedding planner, florist, Matron of Honor, and Sister-in-Law to the beautiful bride … yep, told you I was busy :).

FUEL. This is how I survived. Between all of those roles above, I was still playing the usual: mom, wife, cook and also  keeping together my full time day job.

It was WAY worth it though. This stunning couple are the best Brother-in-Law and Sister-in-Law one over-worked gal can ask for. They deserved a perfect day!

I had so many wonderful vendors help me pull this day off… I can’t wait to show you all the pictures!

And that pic of the rings? It almost killed me. Yep, heart attack. I kept it on the inside though because a frantic sister/Matron of Honor/wedding planner is the LAST thing a happy bride needs to see on her wedding day. Can you guess what happened after this photo was taken? Go ahead, guess.

More, regular posts coming next week (I promise). Thanks for hanging in there with me. I’m going to relax and get rid of my wedding hangover this weekend and then … I’ll be baaaaaack!

the last two photos courtesy of Tracy Dodson Photography

Romantic Bridal Shower

This bridal shower is girly, romantic and simple. Hope you like it!

When coming up with the over all look and feel of this special shower, I started with the romantic wedding color palette and added a little more “girly” with the addition of gold sparkles and a touch of romantic lace. Overall, I think it had a nice romantic, girly, yet sophisticated feel. Take a look!

romantic bridal shower tablescape

Simple place settings and centerpieces lined the table set for thirty.

bridal shower place settings

The center of the table was lined with romantic flowers gathered in milk glass vases. Nothing too fancy, just soft shades of pink and white flowers.  At each setting was a “He said/She said” questioneer and a tiny pink pencil. Guests filled out their cards (a fun conversation starter) and later, the bride read and answered the questions aloud.

Also the favors were aside each plate — a “adult” flavored lollipop. The flavors were Ginger (totally refreshing) and Champagne and Roses.

pink and white centerpieces

 The flowers were amazing. Gerber Daisies, A wide variety of roses, ranunculus & hydrangeas — all locally grown. Bonus — they smelled divine!

make your own mimosa station :: mimosa bar

This hutch worked as our beverage station. Guests enjoyed drinks and appetizers before lunch was served.

mimosa bar

 make your own mimosa station

 The Make your own Mimosa station was a hit.

romantic bridal shower dessert table

 The gorgeous desserts complimented the shower so perfectly. These dessert designers (I can’t think of a more fitting name to call them) matched this theme to-a- T!

romantic bridal shower dessert table

 The ribbon and lace backdrop was by far my favorite element. So simple to make and yet so dramatic.

romantic bridal shower dessert table

Raspberry and Salted Caramel Macarons from Sparkles Macarons, Cheesecake bites and lemonade cupcakes adorned with fondant fabric flowers from Edible Details (all were almost too gorgeous to eat).

romantic bridal shower dessert table

The sugar cookies from Better Bit of Butter were a show-stopper. OH. MY. And they tasted just as good as they looked. They matched the look and feel of the shower so perfectly, I couldn’t have imagined them up to be more perfect.

The darling mini wedding cakes were from The Marshmallow Studio and they are … yep…. marshmallows! They were such a unique addition to the dessert table (thanks Alejandra!). And here’s the blushing bride (who happens to be my lovely sister-in-law). :)

romantic bridal shower

A few last pics of the shower. It was such an amazing day. I’m really proud of how it turned out and VERY honored to have hosted such a lovely day for a very special bride.

I hope these photos help inspire your next event, thanks for reading everyone! xoxoxo.

 

Vendors

Rentals | Allies Party

Flowers | Hidalgo Flowers

 

Marshmallow wedding cakes | The Marshmallow Studio

Sugar Cookies | A Better Bit of Butter

French Macarons | Sparkles Macarons

Fondant cupcake toppers | Edible Details

Lollipops | The Candied Flower

 

 

Wedding Inspiration with Minted + $250 GIVEAWAY

Calling all brides-to-be!

minted giveaway

If you’re a bride (not a bride, but know one? Let her know about this post!), you’ll want to read on. One of my favorite invitation and stationery go-to’s, Minted is sharing four lovely, new wedding invitations with us today. Even better, they have given me a GREAT prize to giveaway — $250 gift card to Minted! So, if you need save the dates, wedding invitations, or thank you notes for your big day … this is for you.

Check out 4 of their newest designs:

Love Story :: Sophisticated buntings created from the pages of a classic love story, set the mood for a romantic event. [see it here]

Chalkboard :: This wedding invitation has plenty of character with a textured background and hand drawn elements. [see it here]

Column Rule :: Clean and modern type highlights the names stars of the day, the bride and groom. [see it here]

In the park :: A sweet invitation to announce an outdoor wedding venue. Features woodgrain and floral embellishments. [see it here]

Do you have a favorite? (I do, but I don’t want to sway you)

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Now for the fun part, your chance to win $250 towards your next Minted order!

Follow these 2 simple steps to enter:

1. Pin your favorite invitation from above to one of your own personal Pinterest boards.

2. Come back here and leave a link to your pin in a comment (grab the url in your browser bar). This will count as your official entry.

P.S. Be sure to follow both HostessTori and Minted on Pinterest!

Contest ends April 29th at 11pm PST. One winner will be chosen randomly from the comments below. Must complete steps 1 & 2 above to enter.

 

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