April 18, 2017

Derby Day Mint Julep Raspberry Iced Tea

We love ourselves a good Kentucky Derby Party! Flowers, horses, big hats, booze… yes please!

When our friends at Four Roses Bourbon sent us a few bottles of their Bourbon Whiskey to try, I decided to play around and come up with a Derby Day cocktail that was a bit more non-traditional… the Mint Julep Raspberry Iced Tea!

Here’s what you need:

-Four Roses Bourbon Whiskey
-freshly brewed raspberry iced tea (you can make your own or buy at the store)
-simple syrup
-fresh raspberries
-fresh lemons
-fresh mint
-ice

Here’s what to do:
1) In a pitcher, combine 5 oz. bourbon, 2 oz. simple syrup.  Take some fresh mint sprigs and rip into pitcher to release flavor.  Stir to combine all ingredients, and top with lemon slices.
2) Fill each cocktail glass about halfway with ice.  Pour pitcher mixture on top of ice to fill each glass.
3) Garnish with lemon slice, fresh raspberry and sprig of mint.
4) Add a straw for sipping, and enjoy!

I styled these beauties on our favorite gold bar cart, which we decorated with these adorable DIY Derby Balloons, which Maggie will be teaching you how to make on the blog tomorrow!

Happy Derby Day! I hope you enjoy.

Until next week…

Photos by Maggie Antalek

xx, Abby
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January 16, 2017

Game Night

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You know what I love? Having friends over to drink wine and play games. We have gone through so many game obsessions like Scrabble, Clue and cards!  I love card games.

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Last week was my friend Tim’s 40th birthday. Tim is a LOVER of games to the point of being obsessed. His wife Lisa wanted to surprise him with a party including our closest friends and when she sent the save the date everyone was IN. It was so exciting. I suggested…game night as the theme. Not to spend the night playing but to honor his love of games with tons of food and drinks.

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I worked with my friend Chef Sue Park on a comfort food type menu for the party including a gorgeous crudités, pigs in a blanket, fried chicken n waffles and mac n cheese bites. The food was outstanding.

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My favorite part about this game night party was the stations. We had a twister wall made out of circular balloons where we served the food (the desserts are staged so you guys could see how stunning this set up looked before it got dark).

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I set a poker themed bar with oversized 40 balloons for Tim’s celebration. Then there was Candyland where we served dessert. And last but not least there was the barcart that we set as a tequila tasting station with pinatas overhead.

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The party was a blast and most importantly, Tim had the best time.

xx, Seri
Party conversation
  1. Sai Bharath

    Hey nice post. I like the games most. I always keep searching new games ideas. Thanks for sharing

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June 27, 2016

DIY with LMP: Poppin’ Pink Popcorn Bar

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Okay, let’s be honest here, popcorn is totally the new “it” snack. These days, we’re all looking for the healthier option than chips and dip at the party table, and I’m not talking about the raw veggie platter (does anyone actually touch that thing?!). Well, various forms of guilt-free popcorn have become my new favorite. I think this adorable popcorn bar is just what you need the next time you have all the girls over to watch a rom-com.

All you will need is:

plain white take-out cartons (or another take-home vessel)
popcorn (we chose Skinny Pop!)
pretzels
M&Ms
marshmallows
white chocolate chips
baking sparkles

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Step 1: Set up your bar so your guests can easily access each ingredient to mix themselves.

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Step 2: Start with popcorn as the base, filling only halfway, and add each ingredient that you desire.

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Step 3: Finish adding each ingredient, leaving plenty of space below the top to be able to shake it up.

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Step 4: Close the top, shake it up!

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Step 5: Enjoy!step8

Make sure each guest takes some extra home with them. A perfect party snack AND party favor!

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xx, Maggie
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May 4, 2016

DIY with LMP: Day-of-Derby Hat

So it’s that moment when you realize today is the day your friend is hosting a Kentucky Derby Party and you have NOTHING TO WEAR. Despite your efforts to find a ridiculous floppy hat at H&M, you’re left feeling hopeless. So instead… just make one! The steps are simple and you’ll be finished with your fabulous hat in less than an hour.

You will need:

1. a plain hat (we bought one for $15 at Forever 21!)

2. fresh, beautiful flowers (we chose peonies, because they’re big enough that we only needed 3)

3. various ribbons to match your flower choice

4. scissors

5. hot glue

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Start off by gluing a thick ribbon and an accent ribbon around the center. Glue it down in multiple places to make sure the edges don’t come up.

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Next, take your biggest ribbon to make a backdrop for your flowers. We used a colored burlap with wire edges, because it helps to keep a good shape.

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We cut ours into 5 different pieces, twisting and folding each before gluing the ends to the hat. Below, you can see where 3 pieces were finished and attached.

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We tried to keep the edges in the same general area so we can concentrate the attention in one spot where the flowers will go.

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Next, have a little fun with extra ribbon! We used the gold ribbon to weave in between the big pieces of pink burlap, occasionally using the hot glue to anchor it down.

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We also folded delicate pink ribbon all along the brim to create a bottom layer for the flowers to rest on top. Again, use the hot glue to anchor the edges down.

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And finally… FLOWERS! Cut the stems down so you have about .5″ to work with for placement. You might need to go even shorter depending on the type of flowers you’re using to make them lay flat against the hat. Add hot glue to the edges of the first stem, place in front of the big ribbon, facing outward. Use your fingers to squeeze the hat around the stem from the inside. Hold until the glue is cooled and hardened.

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Place the rest of your flowers until the space around your large ribbons feels full!

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YAY!!!! Amazing Day-of-Derby hat is complete! And your friends will be majorly impressed that the flowers are real and gorgeous.

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Enjoy Derby Day, darlings!

xx, Maggie
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February 6, 2016

A last minute Game Watching Spread

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The big day is just one day away and it’s not too late to throw together an easy and impressive spread. The key is to keep the menu simple; I know, game watching food is the best. And it’s tempting to want to make everything, but stick with us and you will be sure to wow your crowd.

The key to our menu is efficiency. We grilled chicken and used it two ways : Chicken nachos and chicken tortilla soup…get it…”soup”er bowl. Pretty creative, right?

Here’s how to get it done:

Start by grilling your chicken…and if you live in NYC, this will most likely take place out on your small patio with a tiny, tiny grill. We used Kingsford charcoal to make for an easy fire and seasoned our chicken with olive oil, salt and pepper but feel free to add some cumin, chili powder and garlic powder, for an extra kick of flavor.
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Once the chicken is cooked to perfection, you can set it aside. First up – Chicken Nachos. Nachos come in all shapes and sizes, and we love them all. We simply chopped up the chicken (you can also shred with two forks), and layered it on top of the chips along with shredded jack & cheddar cheeses. Layer. Layer. Layer. You cannot have too many layers!
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Pop it in a 350 degree oven for 5-10 minutes, or cheese is bubbly. Remove, top with homemade pico di gallo and shredded cilantro.
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Then set out additional toppings on the side, so guests can create their ultimate nacho combo. Try jalepenos, scallions, salsa, guacamole, chili and sour cream. Nothing works better for watching the game then a nacho bar!
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Now that we have our nachos ready to go, let’s get started on the chicken tortilla soup. We love this recipe, but we used our grilled chicken instead of the baked chicken it calls for. The beauty of this dish is it can be made completely in advance and simply warmed up as guests arrive. And don’t forget the toppings! A nice dollop of sour cream, sprinkle of Monterey Jack cheese, a few avocado chunks and of course a nice dusting of chopped cilantro. You can also throw some more of your crispy tortilla strips right on top as well.
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We happened to have these brown bowls in our LMP kitchen…don’t they look like footballs?
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So now that our main dishes are done, we wanted to throw together one more quick item to round out our spread. What are we missing? DIP! Watch how simple this bacon cheddar dip is…I bet you even have all of these ingredients already in your house – cheese, bacon, scallions, sour cream and a package of Hidden Valley Ranch seasoning mix.
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We served ours with blue corn chips and some sliced veggies.
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So now it’s time to set the table. Pick up a roll of kraft paper at your local craft store for your tablecloth. Then mark yard lines using masking tape. The 50 yard line was drawn using a white paint marker.
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Hang a piece of chalkboard paper on your wall and you can create an easy “scoreboard” menu.
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Plastic tumblers are perfect for beer, but it’s easy to misplace your glass or confuse it with someone else’s. Well, we’ve got you covered. Football tattoos applied to each cup are the perfect way to let your guests personalize their drinking vessel and show their team spirit at the same time. Here’s how we did it :
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CHEERS!
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Photos by: Dave Robbins Photography
See more game watching fun on the Gather Now Tumbler Feed.

xx, Seri
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