christmas dinner party box

party box insider

Get the insider scoop on our Christmas Dinner Party Box, available in the Shop now!

When I was growing up holiday dinners were a big thing at my grandmothers house. We had ornate Christmas displays, colourful Easter decorations, and frivolous little Halloween creatures. My grandmother’s tables are probably responsible for my party planning obsessions, actually. So it’s only fitting that following her lead, we were talking about how people entertain during the holidays. Christmas (and Thanksgiving for that matter, although some people have different traditions for the latter) is one of the primary holidays were people celebrate with family dinners. And dinner parties can seem hard to decorate. You don’t have the same “food table” that you usually have at other parties, and guests aren’t expecting much more in the way of decor other than a tree or so (or so, lol my childhood).

Luckily, no occasion (and I mean NO occasion, you should see my table right now) is celebrated without some little touch somewhere, so decorating for the seemingly-everyday is super fun for us! Creating the Christmas Dinner Party Box was a way to give people the gift of a simpler holiday. Think of what you could do with the time you’d save worrying over a centrepiece or all those dishes (that’s right, we found cute DISPOSABLE dishware for this one, my aunt’s genius trick) or how to give your guests little holiday tokens without breaking the bank?

We’ve got you covered.

holiday dinner party box table set up holiday dinner party box side viewAfter all, planning a party during the holidays can be stressful, and with all that pressure to throw Pinterest-worthy dinners, it can seem impossible! Our goal is to make your holidays seamless.

Think of the tag line as : “Make your table the belle of the Instagram-ball without lifting that manicured finger.”

We want to give you all the tools you need to host the ultimate Christmas dinner party, with the least amount of work. It’s a party delivered to your doorstep!

holiday dinner party box plate setting

What you get:

– 6 chargers (3 red, 3 green)
– 6 red premium plastic dinner plates
– 6 paper appetizer/dessert plates
– 12 paper straws
– 12 cocktail stirrers
– 6 ornament wine tags
– centrepiece (2 large red trees, 2 small gold trees and 2 holiday wreaths)
– 1 gold table runner
– 1 black tablecloth
– 6 snowflake placemats
– 6 ornament place card holders
– 6 custom place cards
– 1 customized invitation (available printed or digital, perfect for last minute, get the invite today and the box delivered just before your party!)
– 1 paper dot bunting
– 6 pre-wrapped (in gold boxes) mini “grow your own” spruce tree favours
– 24 gold foil cupcake liners
– 24 ornament cupcake toppers
– plus a special surprise from The Party Girl!

holiday dinner party box favour holiday dinner party box mini tree

We thought of a lot of little details that can make life a little easier on the average hostess (down to individually wrapped mini spruce trees for your guests) so not everything is pictured here. But we’ve got tons more, so leave us a comment if you want to see what else you get with this Party Box!

We’re here to make sure that the only thing you need to worry about this holiday season is when to bring out the bubbly. Order your Christmas Dinner party box today!

2am cookies

I have this horrible compulsive problem where I underestimate the time projects will take me. I know I don’t suffer alone, but sometimes I just cannot accept how horrible I am at time management. I had a million blog posts planned but I had to follow up with this year’s Thanksgiving debacle because it seemed important to share with everybody how sometimes even the best laid plans…well, you know. 

As I mentioned in the last post about how I overachieve Thanksgiving every year, I said I’d contribute cranberry sangria for dinner. This seemed like an amazing idea because a) who doesn’t love wine and fruit? and b) it seemed adorably festive and appropriate. This was before I researched whether cranberry sangria was a thing of course. I just assumed that hey, its a fruit and hey, there’s a juice for that so really it’s gotta be possible. 

I immediately noticed a problem upon researching recipes. Apparently cranberry sangria is some sort of fancy holiday concoction created by professional bartenders and people with a lot more alcohol skills than me. For example, as if I could find a recipe that didn’t involve brandy. What is brandy?! Finally I got tired of feeling like a total loser in the liquor store and I just put together a bunch of different recipes and worked it out. Surprisingly, Frankensteining the crap out of a bunch of alcohol has zero negative results and it tasted amazing, so I’m going to share it with you guys for your parties!

The Party Girl Cranberry Sangria

1 bottle of red wine * Side note, this sounds easy but hell it took FOREVER to find one that wouldn’t clash with all the cranberry I poured in there. I’m going to make your life a little easier because I’m a great person and say go to the California section in LCBO and track down a Zinfandel. There are a bunch that say Zinfandel White, but they’re pink. It makes zero sense and contributed to the ten whole minutes I spent staring at wine. Just don’t get that one. The best suggestion I can make is that I bought one called Dancing Bull Zinfandel and it was perfect, and didn’t seem like anything special so I’d say if you can find it in your LCBO, stick with that!

 

1 cup orange juice

5 cups cranberry juice * Completely of your choice, I used cranberry cocktail because I have no issue with whatever they put in it that makes it not 100% cranberries but I know some people aren’t into that so use your own preference!

1 cup (!!!) Triple Sec *Don’t judge me. 

1/2 cup fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced

1 green apple, cored and sliced (you can leave the skin on or take it off, whichever!)

1/2 sliced lime

1 sliced orange

 

Add all the ingredients together and pop it in the fridge for at least a couple hours. I think the longer you leave it the better, and five hours is always the suggested chill time, but who has time for that? I chilled mine for about two hours before we broke it open and it was still great, and refreshing!

 

Anyways it was a big hit, and pretty easy once the original searching was over. One suggestion then, don’t do what I did and serve it like this:

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Important tip: not all spoons are created equal.

I also decided that I couldn’t let last year’s cupcakes disappear into history along with the other nontraditional Thanksgiving desserts, so this year I decided to do some sugar cookies and decorate them. I’m going to post the recipe I use and some better tips in another blog about a birthday party I did because those cookies looked infinitely more professional, but I wanted to share these here to make all those other procrastinators feel better. 

I got home around 7 (I worked until 5 and then stopped off at Target for a rolling pin, because I’d been using a wine bottle and for once didn’t have an empty wine bottle hanging around…which now that I think about it is probably embarrassing…anyways, and then Target became this huge ordeal because I have no willpower and so I was home by 7) and then baked the cookies and whipped up the icing and started to decorate around 9. Huge mistake. My motivation to draw turkeys did not extend beyond 10pm and they slowly started to look really cartoony instead of artistically magical. Not to mention my handwriting broke down around the same time and I wrote “thanks” wrong on the “give thanks” cookies about four times. So this wasn’t a huge success for my culinary portfolio (this, ladies and gents, is why hiring a caterer is never a weakness!) BUT the kids loved the cookies and everybody assumed I made them childish on purpose to appeal to all the under 5s and I just rolled with that because THAT IS WHAT PARTY PLANNERS DO, folks. I didn’t go to bed until 2am so by the time I got them there Sunday for dinner I was just grateful I was contributing anything edible. 

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You can really see where everything started to go downhill.

Anyways, I hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving, and don’t forget to check out our website thepartygirl.ca which should be up by the end of this week! So exciting! 

6

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Last weekend we celebrated Jordan’s sixth birthday! We let her pick the theme and she chose One Direction. So armed with that knowledge and one week I tried to pull together as many 1D elements as possible for our backyard pool party.

You would think that One Direction decorations would be really popular in stores right now (given they seem to be the number one choice for six year old girls these days) but actually we had a really tough time finding pre-done party ideas. So we had to get creative.

The party was on Sunday and I had the misfortune to be at work all day Saturday. I found these great little DIY One Direction paper doll patterns online and spent the day (in between answering the phone, obvs) making these little guys. I had no idea what I was going to use them for but at this point (the DAY BEFORE) I had nothing with any of the 1D faces or anything! I had struck out at every party store in the city. What is an amateur party planner to do?

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I figured that a bunch of kids would love nothing more than a dessert bar so I figured I would start there. Of course this was problematic because unlike every other kid Jordan hates chocolate, so that meant everything had to be vanilla or candy. I decided for a make-your-own sundae bar and sugar cookies, in addition to a candy-stuffed piñata and a custom vanilla cake. I knew I couldn’t handle a One Direction cake but since the best bakery quote I could get for cookies was $80 for two dozen (the custom bakery cake was only $55!) I decided it was time to work my DIY skills.

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I found this recipe for sugar cookies (I used the royal icing recipe on that site too, and bought a few different icing dyes from a local party store to individually dye each colour for the icing. It was a way bigger process than I thought but it was definitely worth it!) and stayed up until 1am decorating the cookies.

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My novice baking skills as evidenced by how I used measuring cups to mix icing instead of actual mixing bowls. Screw technique, it’s all about results, right?

I also trashed our kitchen.

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Justin picked up the cake Saturday night and we hit up Bulk Barn for sundae treats as well as ingredients for the sugar cookies and I have to say it was a major success. We spent about $30 and got a ton of goodies. I really feel like we would have spent a lot more than that if we’d just gone to the grocery store, not to mention the stress of finding meringue powder at Loblaws. Not a fun time I imagine.

I would say from this experience I learned a) if I ever make sugar cookies again I will buy a cake mixer because not only was my poor little hand mixer making some seriously concerning noises but also there was this clear smell of overheating motor that I will likely pay for later but also b) my hand hurt for days. Not just mixing but I had to hand pipe every detail of the cookies because I couldn’t find a way to just project their faces like the Internet suggested. The Internet clearly lies.

After an exhausting cookie night we woke up pretty late Sunday and had to break world records for loading stuff into the car. And our tardiness meant I spent the half hour car ride blowing up 30 balloons. Then we precariously managed to get them into the house where I sewed them together into a garland using fishing line. We strung up the garlands across the deck for a fun look!

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I didn’t think to take a picture until after the party and the sun had done some damage to the balloons by late afternoon (turns out the sun WILL pop your latex balloons) but you get the picture!

All in all though it was a fun day and Jordan had a blast so really that’s all that matters!

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Oh and P.S. – I managed to find the little paper dolls a home by setting up a little display with the loop bags at the front door. It was easy and they looked adorable.

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