Archive for December, 2009

Feast of the Epiphany

The Feast of the Epiphany is celebrated in the catholic church on January 6. It’s traditionally the day commemorated as the day on which the three wise men visited baby Jesus.This religious holiday is regarded as part of the Christmas festivities and it is celebrated largely in the Latin culture.

Parties are usually planned around 6th of January or the weekend closest to the actual day. The main entree is “King’s Cake,” a round cake decorated with fruits, and sweets for decorations. Some people keep the tradition of inserting a random baby doll, symbolizing baby Jesus, in the cake somewhere. Whoever “finds” or gets the doll in their slice of cake is required to throw a party for those present at the party.This day is also the day on which many children get their actual Christmas presents, as it is the same day on which Jesus received his gifts from the three magi. Children leave one of their shoes out the night before with hay and carrots, for their animals and the following morning they awake to find their gifts.The epiphany holiday is one celebrated with joy and much anticipation.So, gather around because the Christmas season isn’t over yet!

Serve the tasty treats (which, you can find at your local bakery right around this time) on our colorful plastic plates and plastic serving trays. :-)

Winter Dinner Parties, Ideas

It is difficult to ignore the cold weather these days-rain storms and snow storms are not strangers to different parts of the countries and/or world. Summer babies shy away to hibernate indoors, while winter babies welcome the season change with heightened enthusiasm towards their winter wardrobe.

Since staying indoors is so appealing to those of us attempting to escape the chilling outdoor cold, it becomes the perfect time to invite friends over for dinners and movie nights. I am almost positive that movie rental businesses must be faring pretty darn well this time of year. Read the rest of this entry »

Holiday Cookie Swap

Baking can prove to be a rather relaxing activity, especially amidst the stress and chaos of the holiday. Not only does baking have a therapeutic effect, but it can also be a great activity to keep the little ones busy or a great opportunity to bond with friends and relatives. Recently, some individuals have taken to having cookie swap parties where each guest brings his/her own special recipes so that a variety of treats can be produced.

After the treats are done baking, each guest decorates and wraps his/her desserts in festive wrapping, such as cello bags or treat boxes. The different packages can all be laid out and guests can walk around swapping cookies and treats.

This occasion serves as a time to catch up with old friends and family and everyone walks away with a nice assortment of holiday desserts.Yum!

Last Girls Night, 2009

The new year is only days away and it’s time to sit back and reminisce upon the blessings we have come across in 2009. In these trying times, it is key to really put life into perspective and appreciate the good things that keep us going everyday (i.e. friends, family, health, life, etc.).

Adult friendships require a bit more effort because they become more difficult to maintain as we all gain careers, start families and embark on important journeys. I always see the beginning of a new year as a way to make a fresh start. This year, make the end of the year bright by hosting a last Girl’s Night in 2009. Grab a few of the favorite appetizers and get a couple bottles of wine to get the night going. You could ask that your guests bring memorable pictures that were taken throughout the year in order to create a memory book for everyone to enjoy.

Time flies and those memories can slip away rather quickly. 2009 was eventful, and 2010 will get even better. In with the new, and out with the old.

Cheers!

Ring in 2010!

I can’t believe another year is only weeks away! It seems like only yesterday that we were happily celebrating the arrival of 2009.This year has definitely become the year in which everyone has planned to stay in more often. It is a safe assumption that most of these nights in are a result of the state of the economy and the need to save. I suppose when all is well, most people want to go all out and do fun things to ring in the year. Today, it seems a bit foolish to not take some practical measures and plan a party or a small get together at home.My friend and I were discussing how much more comfortable it would be to just plan a party instead of going out where almost every place is guaranteed to be over-crowded with inebriated individuals.

Tips for Ringing in the New Year:

-Grab a plastic bowl with 12 grapes and make a resolution or wish for each month of the year

-Say a toast, and mean it. Congratulate friends on successes and make family feel appreciated

-Set a reasonable goal for the year, whether it be to start that novel you’ve been meaning to write or registering for that class you mean to take last semester. (This year went by so fast, make sure another year doesn’t slip through your fingers).

Food/Toy Drive – Tis’ The Season

The Christmas season is about giving and helping one another, and more specifically the less fortunate. Although Thanksgiving was almost a month ago, it’s important that we be grateful for all of our blessings, every day.

This year, grab a few close friends or acquaintances from your local church and organize a toy or food drive for the needy. I remember my father’s union organized an amazing toy drive every year and the daughters of the board members always dressed up like elves to make the event more memorable for the children. A small gift could make one child’s entire holiday season and a can of food you may never even eat could make or break another family’s Christmas dinner.

Make the event memorable, although I’m sure the looks on the children’s faces will be more than enough of a memory. Pin each of your helps with a special “Helper” Button and bask in the joy of giving.

Christmas Cocktail Parties

The holidays are hectic…especially if you have a big family. For my family, most of Christmas week consists of “get togethers” planned to pick Secret Santas or to distribute Christmas dinner responsibilities, but they almost always turn into longer affairs than intended. Why all of these things can’t get done on one night is beyond me.

To make a long story short, some of my closest friends have started to plan early Christmas cocktail parties or dinner parties to make sure we get a chance to see each other and catch up for the holiday parties. My friend invited us girls over to her place this weekend for appetizers and drinks. It was great to have a chance to relax and chit chat for a night before the holidays get too close.She made things really simple-she let the martini glasses chill and had a little bar area set up with everything we would need and then she left small appetizers like cheese and crackers laid out on the coffee table. There was a small cupcake bar on the counter and everyone munched at their own pace. The best part, of course, was just talking.

Dress up your cocktail party with cute Christmas accessories like our Holiday Cocktail collections. :-)

Christmas Birthdays

I have quite a few friends and family members who happen to have birthdays on either Christmas eve or the day after Christmas. People with birthdays during any other season (ahem, mine is in the summer) don’t understand what birthday wrapping paper on their birthday really means to them. It must be terrible to get a “birthday gift” wrapped in Christmas wrapping paper-probably not as terrible as getting the ole that’s-your-Christmas-AND-birthday-gift line. Wouldn’t the rest of us be slightly upset if our friends got us birthday gifts and decided to count them as Christmas gifts too? I mean, really, it’s like eliminating one whole special day for this “blessed” group of individuals.

I was just creating a Christmas gift budget and I got to thinking that it was starting to get pricey because some friends and family needed double gifts and I almost fell into that evil trap. This year, don’t let the frugal bug bite you when it comes to Christmas birthdays! You can throw a perfectly fabulous early birthday party and an amazing Christmas party. Put it this way, it gives your friends and family the perfect excuse to spend quality time with each other.

I can already smell Christmas. :-D

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