pizza cake | a couple of amateurs

pizza cake

Our husbands have an excellent history of planning fantastic birthday celebrations for us. Surprisingly, we haven’t been as good about returning the favor; I guess we’re more into baby showers and New Year’s Eve soirees. It’s a good thing Anthony and Chris take care of each other. I dislike the

french baby shower | a couple of amateurs

bébé shower

Exciting news, guys! We’ve added a new member to our party planning team! And by “we” I mean Chelsea and Anthony, who welcomed their daughter to this world last month. She is so tiny and sweet and beautiful, and now that she’s a few weeks old I figured I’d better

circus tent | vintage carnival baby shower | a couple of amateurs

carnival baby shower

Annie and I were thrilled to be able to host this vintage carnival baby shower for our friend, Taylor. The menu included all her favorite things: popcorn, peanuts, pretzels, sweet treats and more. A carnival theme is perfect for either gender baby. This shower was for a baby girl, so

keepin' it classy | grown up slumber party new year's eve

grown-up slumber party

For the past few years, we have hosted New Year’s Eve parties for our group of friends. They have ranged from small gatherings to huge fundraisers for our Kiwanis Club. Since it’s sort of become a tradition, we start brainstorming well in advance for possible themes. For our 2016 New Year’s

chai tea in a jar | a couple of amateurs

the gift of chai

Toward the end of summer, I lent a mason jar to my friend Liz so that she could take home some leftover sangria. We do not let good sangria go to waste, guys. When the jar was returned to me, it had an adorable handwritten recipe for chai tea, plus almost

gin tasting

We’re totally getting into the Christmas season around here. The weekend after Thanksgiving, we started playing music, got out the decorations, put up the lights, and by Sunday I was very eager to set up our Christmas tree. So, for a double dose of holiday cheer, we decided to go gin-cutting

christmas cookie party and hot chocolate bar | a couple of amateurs

holiday cookie party

The holidays are here! The most wonderful time of the year. I seriously cannot get enough Christmas in my life, which is why I was very excited that my turn to host book club fell in December. Annie and I have been in the same book club for over five

happy thanksgiving

I hope you all had a fantastic Thanksgiving. We certainly did. Family, friends, food, drink, babies, and more food. Thanksgiving is my mom’s favorite holiday, and Christmas has always been my fave. But now I think I’m starting to see where Diane is coming from. I’ve heard we turn into our mothers, so

apple party

Looking to plan a creative, seasonally-themed event that appeals to guests of various ages, genders, and interests? Our Kiwanis Young Professionals club has monthly social events, and that was exactly what I was looking to do last month. We hosted a very autumnal gathering, but I think this concept could be

fiesta desserts

Last month, I was charged with the task of creating a selection of desserts for our local Kiwanis club’s fiesta-themed banquet. Chelsea was on the planning committee, and also gave me (or rather, my household) the responsibility of planning the drink menu. She requested authentic margaritas made by my husband,

how to host a beer pairing dinner

Wine pairing for meals is a pretty popular concept. So why not beer? For some reason, when we drink beer with food, we aren’t as likely to stop and taste and think about the flavors that the beer and food bring out in each other. You can open your friends’

french picnic

Our group of friends has a rotating dinner party, with a different theme and different host each month. This month’s theme was French Picnic, chosen by our pal Nicole who is a professionally trained and amazingly talented pastry chef. Nicole made a huge selection of desserts, and the guests brought the

nautical baby shower

Annie and I are pretty used to hosting parties together, but sometimes its fun to work with different people to gain new knowledge and insight to different party planning techniques. This was a fun opportunity to host a baby shower for our friend, Katie, with a new friend of ours,

thirtieth birthday s’mores bar

I turned 30 last month. Leading up to the big day, I had let my husband (with much help from Annie) plan a surprise birthday party for me. It was really hard to not be in control of the situation. In fact, it was so painful, that I had to

amazing food: to go

To celebrate Chelsea’s 30th birthday, her husband organized a surprise overnight sailing trip with a small group of her friends. I was in charge of food for the group – lunch, dinner, and a breakfast the next morning. Although essential for that whole “surprise” element, it was strange to plan

the very hungry baby shower

One of the reasons we love to host parties is that we want to make the people we love feel special. We had so much fun planning a baby shower for Kim, one of our best friends. Kim had the idea for a Very Hungry Caterpillar theme, and of course we