This weekend I threw what I hope is my first annual dip party. A dip party you say? What is a dip party? Well, a group of girlfriends got together, everyone bought a different homemade dip and we snacked and snacked and snacked! I had each girl send me their recipe in advance so I could make sure we had no repeat ideas (we had quite the variety, from asian dips to hummus to dessert dips!), and it gave me the opportunity to pick out some delicious  all-natural Food Should Taste Good chips to pair with them. I used a big tiered serving stand to display all different flavors (jalapeño, blue corn, and sweet potato were my favorites). I also used the recipes to make little recipe card sets for party favors, each guest brought home a stack of cards with each dip recipe to make again and again. I’ll be sharing some of the recipes here over the next few days!Dip Party 1 read more

How is it already 5 days into the New Year? I feel like I was in a mad sprint at the end of the year with work, holidays, and getting tons of projects done for our annual New Year’s Eve party. This was the first time hosting it out at our house, so we made New Year’s Eve an official housewarming party since many of our friends hadn’t seen our new place yet (and plus, it guilted them to drive out to the ‘burbs for the night, #realtalk). It was a totally different experience throwing this party than our past 5 years of apartment hosting. For starters, it takes a lot more time to clean and prep a whole house than it did an apartment; we also had quite a few guests sleepover so we had lots to do to fix up guest bedrooms and freshen bedding. On top of all of that, I didn’t have my party flow down — you know: the spot you always put the bar, the place you always set out the food — all of that was trial and error this time around. Oh and one more thing: we had construction going on in our kitchen and wet paint in our dining room up until about 20 hours before the party started — can you hear my panicked laugh?!Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

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It’s here! It’s here! My favorite holiday of the year! I know people get all grumpy about New Year’s Eve because it usually involves an overly expensive dinner or a crowded bar, but that’s why I decided a long time ago to throw my own New Years bash and give all my friends the perfect plan for sending out the year in style and kicking off the new one just right. Call me a sap, but I love the idea of starting the new year with my best friends, doing what I love most: entertaining. It’s also one of my favorite holidays because it involves all things glitter and sparkle and confetti-filled. So if you’re hosting your own soiree this year, or need to add a little pop of celebration to a night in watching the ball drop, I’ve got a few last minute DIY ideas you can craft up. I worked on these with Julie of Posh and Prep who lent her expert calligraphy skills to make them a little extra special! Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset read more

‘Tis the season for holiday spirit, and drinking those holiday spirits! One of my favorite parts of getting ready to entertain is setting up my bar cart with festive accents. I pulled together tons of inspiration for bringing pops of metallics and lots of fun details to your own holiday bar cart (all of which are under $75!). Add a classic bar cart — this one is a steal from Target — to get your entertaining game in tip-top-shape before Christmas and New Years.Holiday Gold Bar Cart read more

Just a few days after we had moved into our new house in October I got an email to participate in one of the most fun photo shoots I’ve worked on to date — a holiday entertaining piece in the Improper Bostonian. We had a tiny window to shoot this holiday DIY feature and by some amazing luck, a group of talented, creative ladies got together with me to help pull it off (with stacks of my unpacked belongings in the nearby background). Below are a few pictures from the shoot (and two more behind-the-scenes pictures from that day); you can read the full article here: Improper Bostonian – Home for the Holidays.1125DIY-9 read more

We’ve been in our house for exactly one month now, and are starting to finally feel settled (yay!), but aren’t in a place yet to be hosting a massive Thanksgiving dinner. I dream of this though! Maybe in the next few years we’ll be ready to host on our own, I mean, it’s basically the Super Bowl of entertaining and eating and I think I’d be a pretty strong contender at that game (ladies and gentlemen, the first time a sportsanalogy has ever been used on this site!). Even though I’m not hosting, I still have lots of ideas for a spectacular Thanksgiving tables to share, so I worked with Julie from Posh & Prep Calligraphy to come up with a few special details that are easy to translate to your own turkey day celebrations!
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If you’re waiting in line at the grocery store this week and see the new issue of Family Circle magazine, pick it up and give it a flip through, you just might see a familiar face (me!!). I’m excited that for the second year in a row to be their Happy to Host blogger, sharing hostess ideas for November holidays. In the article you’ll find a bunch of my tips for making holiday hosting a little bit less stressful and a little more fun this year. You’ll also get an exclusive recipe that I created for the holiday season with help of Hidden Valley Ranch: ranch roasted root vegetables, a family-friendly spin on some classic fall flavors that just might be the perfect way to spice up your Thanksgiving table this year. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

I’m long overdue in recapping the baby shower I helped throw for my darling cousin Jana a few weeks ago. She had a dream team of friends and relatives that jumped in to help throw her a shower, so I volunteered to tackle what I do best — decorations. When I was visiting her a few months back she showed me an amazing DIY mobile she was going to hang over the baby’s crib, a festive little thing full of pink and mint tassels and pom-poms — the perfect inspiration piece for the baby shower. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset read more

They say a party with out cake is just a meeting. Well, I say a party without appetizers fits the same criteria. Even if I’m just having a few people over for casual drinks, I almost always make two things: a cheese plate and a small crudité platter. I always feel like I’m being super healthy when I make a veggie and dip tray, but let’s be honest — vegetables are only there as vehicles to get the most amount of dip possible in my mouth — real talk people! Alouette Cheese sent me some of their new Le Bon Dips to try and I attempted a little stylists’ trick to make my crudité look extra appealing: I made a dip bowl out of veggies!

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