Sendomatic has a great new design for a Jumpy Party for all the little hoppers out there! Sendomatic tracks responses, allows guests to add to calender and send text reminders - what more can you ask for?
My philosophy is that no summer is complete without watermelon. Watermelon can be served as a delicious snack all by itself, or you can be bold and opt for a more involved watermelon recipe. Here are a few simple ones. Enjoy!
1. Freshly Sliced Watermelon
2. Homeade Lemonade with Fruity Ice Cubes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
3 x 12-hole ice-cube trays
12 small fresh mint leaves
400g seedless watermelon, chopped
1/4 cup lime juice
2 litres soda water,
1 cup lemon juice
1 cup caster sugar
Using a citrus zester, remove strips of rind from lemon and limes. Reserve lemon and limes for juicing. Arrange zest in holes of one ice-cube tray. Fill with water and freeze overnight.
Place a mint leaf in each hole of second ice-cube tray. Fill with water and freeze overnight.
Place watermelon and juice in a blender. Blend until smooth. Pour mixture into third ice-cube tray and freeze overnight.
To make lemon syrup, place juice and sugar in a small saucepan. Stir over a low heat until sugar is dissolved. Bring to boil. Simmer for about 5 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Refrigerate mixture until cold.
Just before serving, place lemon syrup in a large jug. Add all of the ice-cubes and soda water. Stir to combine.
3. Watermelon Frozen Ice
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Freeze Time: 1-1 1/2 hours
1 cup (152g) of cubed watermelon
1 container (4-8 oz) of non-fat strawberry yogurt
Place watermelon and yogurt in a blender. Puree.
Pour mixture into a bowl. Freeze for 1-1 1/2 hours, stirring every 20 minutes.
4. Watermelon, Mache and Pecan Salad
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Bake Time: 7 minutes
3/4 cup chopped pecans
5 cups seeded and cubed watermelon
1 (6-oz.) package mâche, thoroughly washed
Pepper Jelly Vinaigrette
1 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
Preheat oven to 350°. Arrange pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet, and bake at 350° for 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly toasted and fragrant. Cool on a wire rack 15 minutes or until completely cool.
Combine watermelon and mâche in a large bowl; add vinaigrette, tossing gently to coat. Transfer watermelon mixture to a serving platter, and sprinkle evenly with pecans and cheese.
Hot BBQ + cold drinks = a good time! For laid-back, no-fuss entertaining, it's hard to beat a backyard barbecue. With easy, fun dishes and activities for both kids and adults, your party is destined to become and instant classic. Not Just A Mommy!
Get The Party Started Have the kids cut Popsicle shapes from colored construction paper, then glue the cutouts to Popsicle sticks after you've written in the barbecue details.
How about this perfect print-and-mail template from Real Simple, it even has a line for what guests can bring to round out the refreshments.
Cleverness at Maggie's Dinner Dates who used condiment bottles to invite friends to their bash.
Setting The Scene Take a tip from Instructables and turn kettle grills into planters. Fill the grill to the top with soil, and add whichever flower or plant of your choice just as you would in a regular flower pot. Don't cover with the lid, instead prop it against the bottom of the grill.
Skip the cooler and fill a child's wagon with ice and stock it with sodas, beer, and bottled water. Plus, the wagon can be rolled around for a bit of curbside service!
Take another tip from the party planning gurus in Real Simple:Celebrations; set out utensils and napkins in rinsed Campbell's soup cans, keeping everything orderly and adding a little more color to your spread. Just make sure that the rims don't have any jagged edges.
Bypass the checkered tablecloth and paper plates. A long sheet of white butcher paper is the ultimate table covering. Set out cups of crayons like they do at the restaurants and let guests add to the decor. These retro serving baskets lined with parchment paper make fun and reusable serving plates. I've purchased mine at our local Party City.
If you insist on paper plates, nestle them into an upturned Frisbee for a sturdier surface and a fun take-home favor.
This hourglass beverage jar from Sur La Table has a 2-gallon capacity that is perfect for lemonade, sangria and more.
What To Do Sorry, y'all, not everyone wants to just sit around, especially with kids involved. Another great idea outlined in Real Simple: Celebrations, keep the kids occupied by setting up a lemonade stand. Place a few dishes of quarters around so adults can patronize the stand as often as they like.
The classics never go out of style. Set up lawn games like croquet and badminton, and nothing beats water balloons and sidewalk chalk.
The Munchies Yes, hot dogs and hamburgers are a given, but take standard fare to another level. Set up a flavored butter bar for your corn on the cob. Check out BHG's slide show of exotic ways to jazz up your ears with blends like curry powder and nuts.
I love food stations; less work for me and another way to keep guests engaged. Have a fruit kabob station; guarantee kids will eat their fruit. Use Popsicle sticks for little ones, older kids and adults can use regular skewers. Have a S'more station with a twist; indulge in toppings that allow guests to top off with one more goody. Before sandwiching with the second graham-cracker square, Sunset.com recommends to try sliced strawberries, bananas, peanut butter, and even caramel.
Send Them Home With A Smile Back at Maggie's Dinner Dates, she bought BBQ oven mitts (a score at Michael's), rolled them up tightly and tied with a thick ribbon. Placed in the tin buckets on the table they make perfect centerpieces.