Category: House & Heart

Why You Should Have a Charcuterie Display at Your Next Party

Not only do I love to attend parties but I absolutely adore entertaining too. I enjoy cultivating a guest list from various social groups and seeing how many people we can squeeze into our house. I like putting together food and drink menus and coming up with the perfect dish. So when we found out that Clay would be frocked earlier this month, we knew we wanted to throw a party in some capacity. After briefly considering a third-party site like a restaurant or brewery, we quickly decided that our house would be the best place to host the festivities due to the short-notice and timing of the ceremony.

We looked into having Wegman’s catering the party (we’ve used them before with great success) but when we determined that we wanted a giant charcuterie display as the pièce de résistance, we figured it would be easy to do ourselves. And guys? Not only was it an amazing display that everyone loved and found to be delicious – it was super easy to prep and required very little attention the day of the party. Even though we had a lot of hands on deck with out of town guests, we didn’t have much time in between rushing home from the Pentagon in Friday night traffic and the party starting at 7pm so being able to do most of the work beforehand was clutch.

I bought four large cutting boards that are easy to store when not in use and can easily be used for future parties. The meats and cheeses were sourced from Costco, Trader Joe’s, and Aldi. I printed out the names of the cheeses on card stock and hot-glued them on toothpicks. The night before the party, I arranged everything on the cutting boards and wrapped heavily with plastic wrap and put them in the basement refrigerator. The night of the party, I unwrapped the boards and arranged them on the kitchen table. I added dried apricots, dates, gherkins, blackberries, strawberries, and olives for contrast and color. Seriously guys – so easy.

Christmas Decor for $1.00 {What to Buy at Dollar Tree This Year}

When I was in 5th grade, my friend’s mom let my friend and I explore the mall on our own – we went to Claires, Afterthoughts, and the dollar store. We giggled when we passed Victoria’s Secret and looked admiringly at the older girls shopping at 5*7*9. We then ate junior roast beef sandwiches from Arby’s before meeting back up with her mom at the agreed upon time. We were practically adults that afternoon. And there was nothing I loved more during my childhood than feeling like an adult. That’s probably why I was enamored with that dollar store at Westridge Mall in Phoenix, Arizona – I could afford buy what I wanted in that store with my paltry allowance.

Nowadays, my patronage dollar stores – particularly Dollar Tree – is limited to when I need certain craft supplies and inexpensive holiday decorations and gift receptacles. As with most things at Dollar Tree – Christmas decor can be hit or miss, which is why I decided to compile a list of my favorite things that I’ve picked up this year. The inventory at Dollar Tree is constantly changing and can vary by store so there is no guarantee if your store will has these items in stock but it’s worth popping in and checking out the selection. After all – you never know what you might find!

Hanging wooden sign. The store near me had quite the large selection of wooden holiday signs but this one was by far my favorite. The quality is fantastic for $1 and I love that it isn’t overly Christmas-y, which means it can stay up longer!

Thick cardboard gift boxes. These are a great deal for $1 – use them for cookies, gifts, or just as decoration on their own. Some had separate lids but most where bi-fold, which I absolutely love (see example below).

Gift tags.  I’m trying to up my wrapping game and these gift tags will allow me to do so without breaking the bank. In the past, I’ve just used the sticker-type tags that I’d buy in sheets at Target but there is just something so charming about a hand-tied gift tag so I’m going to try these this year.

Glass jars with garland and ribbon detail. How pretty are these simple glass jars? They’d be perfect for a bouquet of candy canes or cinnamon sticks to give as gifts, wouldn’t they?

Ornaments. These metal ornaments are my favorite. I tie them around door handles for a little extra Christmas cheer and use them as gift decorations. I’ve also hot glued them to wreaths and use them as part of centerpieces. They’re just a great universal holiday item at Dollar Tree.

Ornament-making supplies. A perfect inexpensive craft for kids (and adults).

Wreath-making supplies. Are these high-end craft supplies? No. Are they inexpensive? Yes. The wreath frames are a steal for $1 – at craft stores they are much higher priced.

Mugs. I thought these festive mugs were cute. They’d be good to fill with a homemade hot chocolate kit and give to neighbors and people you see out and about in the community.

As evident by this post, I still like to visit the dollar store from time to time. The kids enjoy going as well because it sort of feels like a treasure hunt each time we step foot in the store. And while I may not be able to visit Afterthoughts and 5*7*9 with my children (RIP), I can still take them to Dollar Tree and share a little bit of my childhood – at least around Christmas time.