Last month our friend had a beautiful baby boy, but before he arrived, we wanted to shower her with lots of love so we hosted a brunch in her honor. Here’s a look at some of the things we did to celebrate the occasion.
First, things first. Let’s talk about what we made to eat – after all, isn’t any gathering worth it’s salt centered around food?!?! If there aren’t a bunch of women chatting and catching up while nibbling on some tasty treats, it’s not a party in our book!
Since it was a brunch theme, it was only fitting that we made some tasty Egg Muffins (see our post on “Breakfast of Champions” for instructions on how to make these). For added character, Dawn added zoo animal cupcake toppers to the egg muffins, which matched the theme of the baby’s new nursery.
Next up was Paula Dean’s French Toast Casserole. This has become Christine’s Christmas morning “go to” brunch item. If you haven’t tried it, it’s devine! This recipe is not catered to special dietary needs – no way, no how! Can you say: YUM!!!
To round out the meal we also served:
Bacon and sausage
An assortment of breads for toasting
A party is not a party without tasty beverages. Period. We don’t know about you, but we need to wash down our scrumptious food with something equally as delicious.
White Sangria was just the ticket! This light, yet flavorful beverage paired perfectly with our brunch theme. (Please see our post on White Sangria – An Easy and Refreshing Cocktail for Any Event to learn how to make it.)
We also served champagne, lemon and cucumber water, orange juice, and other non alcoholic beverages for some variety.
While preparing for the party we asked ourselves: how can we help our friends avoid asking the old tired question, “Is that my glass or yours?” Wine glass charms are great, but we wanted something more personalized and these monogrammed tags were just the answer. We used burlap string to tie them onto the glasses. They went perfectly with the “Sangria” label on the glass jug, don’t you think?
For The Sweet Tooth:
Instead of traditional cake for dessert, we chose to offer an assortment of sweets that were suitable for our friends with special dietary needs.
Christine made Chocolate Covered Macaroons from a Martha Stewart recipe, but she added her own twist and made them into balls and drizzled melted gluten, soy, nut, and dairy free Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips over the top.
Lemon-Zucchini Loaf With Lemon Glaze – Christine adapted this recipe from Nancy Creative into gluten free and dairy free. She also doubled the recipe (so she could have some for herself). Please follow the recipe as instructed, but for Christine’s doubled recipe with a twist, do this:
1 cup almond milk + 1tbsp white vinegar = Buttermilk
Oatmeal Cookie Bars (see our post on “Disappearring Dairy Free, Soy Free, Gluten Free Oatmeal Cookies Bars – With a Twist” for the recipe.)
Since the celebration was in the month of December, Dawn stumbled upon these great orange Poinsettias (sometimes you just get lucky). How pretty are they? They stayed nicely through the holidays too.
As a gift and for decor, Dawn made a special quilted patchwork “B” for the baby’s room. Check back next week for instructions on how to make your own personalized quilted letter.
Dawn also put together a “clothesline” banner that spelled out the baby’s name. She simply strung some jute and added burp cloths, bath towels and washcloths held in place with vintage wooden clothespins for added charm.
To continue the zoo animal theme, Dawn created unique one of a kind napkin rings using the animals from the cupcake toppers and colored tissue paper.
To Say “Thank You”:
For favors, Christine made an alternative recipe of Orange-Almond Cookies – no gluten, no dairy, no soy, no nuts!
1/4 tsp Bob’s Red Mill Xanthan Gum
3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
1 tsp finely grated orange zest
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup Coconut Oil
1/4 tsp almond extract
1.) Heat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2.) In a medium bowl, mix flour, 1/4 cup of sugar, orange zest, and salt. Add coconut oil and almond extract. Mix with hands or a wooden spoon until the dough is smooth.
3.) Roll 24 teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, arranging them 1 1/2 inches apart on the sheet.
4.) Bake 15 minutes or until golden brown on the bottoms. Let cookies cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes; remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
5.) Place the remaining 1/2 cup of confectioner’s sugar in a quart-size zip bag and half of the cookies, seal bag, and move cookies back and forth till they are covered. Repeat with remaining cookies.
This recipe was adapted from Redbook magazine recipe Orange-Almond Cookies.
Dawn’s husband thought they tasted a bit like Fruit Loops!
We packed these delicious cookies in these colorful favor bags and sent everyone on their way with one, or two!
We hope our friend was pleased with the event! We certainly had fun!
P.S. For those of us who love to entertain and create a beautiful home, we are often inspired by ideas online, yet implementation is time-consuming. Though we hope to encourage you to try things on your own, we understand that sometimes you don’t have the time, and we would love to help. As full-service creative lifestyle designers, Simply Tangerine specializes in designing beautiful living spaces, sourcing or refinishing furniture, planning special events, and creating menus to meet personal dietary needs. We will discuss your needs, assess your situation and put together unique ideas to make your room décor, furniture, event, or menu exceed your expectations. We would love to bring a Simply Tangerine twist to your home or event. Please contact us anytime!