Another great theme for a wedding is a preppy theme. Lots of brides and grooms gravitate to a preppy styled wedding as it is made up of mostly traditional wedding ideas and trends with a slight preppy flare of course. So for those looking to create the perfect preppy day here are some great ideas that will get you ready to walk down the aisle and say “I do!”

The Venue
The perfect preppy ceremony site is a chapel. Their simplistic charm provides the perfect canvas for you to add your own preppy flare. Want to add even more prep? Find a chapel with historical significance or connection like the Charlottesville UVA Chapel. 
The Bride
When choosing your wedding dress for a preppy wedding think classic lines and pearls. You want something elegant, timeless and above all else something that will look great with your pearls. And don’t worry about needing something blue on your wedding day. Just add your new monogram in blue to the inside of your wedding dress.

The Groom
Your groom does not have to wear a tux for this preppy styled wedding. A Khaki suit is perfect for a spring or summer preppy affair. Just don’t forget your boat shoes for the reception!
The Colors
When it comes to choosing a preppy color palette for your wedding there really is no right answer. Start with navy and the choice is yours for choosing your complementing color as everything looks great with navy. I love pairing navy with pinks, peaches or light greens.

The Accessories
For even more preppy style take your wedding colors and find them in seersucker or stripped fabric for your bouquet wrap, groomsmen ties, sashes and linens. You can’t get any more preppy than seersucker!
The Monogram
For any preppy lover out you know that there is nothing that you can’t monogram. This is the perfect occasion to try out your new monogram on everything for your wedding day. You can have it stitched onto your veil, the inside of your dress, piped onto the cake, give your guests monogrammed cookie favors, and monogram your beverage napkins for the bar. The real question is what are you not going to monogram?

The Standout Detail
If you have a truly preppy reception venue you will have an outdoor area (preferably by the water). Take advantage of the grassy area by having lawn games for your guests to enjoy playing. Favorites like croquet and cornhole are two everyone will enjoy.

What is your favorite preppy styled wedding accessory? 


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It doesn’t matter if you plan en elegant dinner or throw together a last minute movie night, there will always be food. Even if you are headed over to a friend’s for a fun get together proper etiquette dictates one is never supposed to show up without something in hand. So if you are hosting your own event this summer or heading over to a friend’s its good to be prepared. Here are ten simple summertime snacks that are simple to prepare and perfect for any occasion. You can even make a few of these today and store them in your freezer for those really last minute parties. Enjoy!
1. Greek Salad Skewers from My Baking Addiction
2. DIY Banana Pops from Bakers Royale
3. Melon Wrapped Prosciutto from Martha Stewart
4. Peach Mango Salsa from Taste of Home
5. Homemade Guacamole and Pita Chips from The Gracious Pantry
6. Bruschetta from Lace & Lacquer
7. Ricotta Crostinis from Honestly Yum
8. Summer Orzo Pasta Salad from A Cedar Spoon
9. Southwestern Hummus from Culicurious
10. Onion Dip from Lipton (my favorite snack for any occasion!)

What is your favorite simple summertime snack to make?


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Just because it is summertime doesn't mean you can't enjoy some familiar Christmas treats. Since it is Christmas in July now is the perfect time to pull out some of your yuletide favorites to enjoy. Since it is summer this is also a great time to get a little creative with the seasonal fruits and veggies that are cheap and easy to find. A great recipe to try out is this Strawberry Santa Dessert recipe from Sherri Foxman, party blogger of Here is what you will need to make this summertime Christmas treat!

  • 1 package of strawberries
  • 8 oz. of heavy whipping cream or a can of white frosting
  • Powdered sugar
  • Assortment of sprinkles
  • Quart-sized Ziploc bag
  • Scissors
  • White plate/display tray

1. Wash and cut strawberries, making sure to cut the tip of the strawberry off to leave a nice fat Santa body and a little hat.
2. Beat the heavy whipping cream until peaks form.  Then, add 1 tbs of powdered sugar at a time until the whipped cream is to your taste. (You can substitute the whipped cream for canned frosting if you prefer, but the whipped cream makes the dessert much lighter.  The upside to frosting is that it won’t melt in the heat.)
3.  Fill a quart-sized Ziploc bag with whipped cream, and cut off one of the corners of the bag. Then, pipe the whipped cream on the strawberry to make a head, buttons, and hat poof-ball.
4. Add sprinkles to make eyes and a nose.
5.  Arrange the Santas on a white tray to make the red of the strawberries POP! Also, make sure to keep the strawberries in the refrigerator until serving, especially if it’s warm outside.

This is the perfect summertime treat to have at your Christmas in July celebration! Do you have a great recipe for a Christmas in July party? Share in it in the comments section below!


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I am a huge fan of the holiday season so when you have the opportunity to get to celebrate again I never say no. Christmas in July is not a set holiday date but something that could be celebrated at anytime during July. You can draw some inspiration from the folks who live down under and celebrate Christmas during their summer months. So plug in that light up palm tree, throw some garland up around the house, press play on your Christmas playlist and get ready to celebrate with some holiday cheer. Here are some fun ways that you and your friends can celebrate Christmas in July.

Peppermint Infusion
A great way to add a sprinkle of holiday cheer is to add in a little peppermint twist. You can take some of your favorite summertime treats like s’mores or a cool concoction and add some broken up pieces of peppermint or a splash of peppermint liquor.
Tacky Sweater Party
Since this isn’t the official holiday season your guests will have no problems dressing up in their tackiest Christmas outfits since they don’t have to worry about attending another party before or after yours. Inspire your guests to find their tackiest apparel as well as mix it up with a little summertime items and have everyone vote on the winner.

Christmas Crafting
If you have a group of friends who loves to craft this is the perfect time to tackle one or two of those DIY Christmas projects that you just never seem to have time to do. That way when the holiday season comes around you are ready to go with your new Christmas tree snow globes, utensil holders or ornament tree centerpiece (all things I have one my potential Christmas craft list) and will only have to worry about what gifts to buy. 
White Elephant Swap
Still have a Christmas present that hasn’t been touched or you just don’t know what to do with? Have all your guests bring over that one left over item wrapped up for a fun white elephant swap. You can find all the directions from my holiday gift exchange post.

Only 152 days until Christmas! You can keep up with the official countdown here. Are you celebrating Christmas in July?  


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Last month The Hook, one of the local papers in Charlottesville, published their summer wedding edition. I love reading this edition of the paper as it always includes so many great new wedding and event ideas that are relevant to the area. This edition had a great spreadsheet (?) that covered all the basic aspects of a wedding based on the type of theme you were looking to create. As soon as I found this article I could not wait to share it with you! So over the next few weeks I will feature one of the wedding themes with you. This week, the vineyard wedding.

Hosting a wedding at a vineyard is easy to coordinate living in the Charlottesville area. Virginia is a great area for growing and making wine and is home to over 225 wineries. A great aspect of hosting a wedding at a vineyard is that you are sure to have amazing scenery, an indoor and outdoor venue option and of course some great tasting wine! Once you find that perfect winery to host your day here is everything else you can check out that will be sure to make your vineyard wedding a night to remember.

The Dress
When it comes to choosing the dress you will want to look for something with a romantic feel. A dress that features elegant details and lace works perfect for this setting.

The Groom
For this type of wedding nothing will look better than a perfectly tailored suit. A classic black suit will complement your dress and look amazing with a vineyard backdrop.
The Accessories
Your maids and you will look great all evening with a stunning clutch holding your lipstick and phone. For the creative bride you could even make your own like my friend Emily did.

The Bouquet
All pastel colored flowers look amazing for a vineyard wedding. When choosing your flowers try to stick with one color and then use whites or grays as accents to create the perfect wedding day bouquet like this pink one here.
The Paper
You will not want to pass up the opportunity of taking some great wedding day pictures in the vineyard. Accessorize your pictures with cute paper signs that say "thank you" or "just married." Check out my Wedding Thank You Signs post for more great ideas!

The Band
A live band is perfect for a vineyard wedding. Whether you choose a country bluegrass band or a jazz group live music adds the perfect touch!

The Standout Detail
And for the perfect standout detail at a vineyard wedding? A late night snack brought to you by a local food truck, like Carpe Donut in Charlottesville! You can usher all your guests outside for a quick change of scenery and let them enjoy a yummy snack. 
What do think about this vineyard wedding theme? Make sure to come back next week to see the next wedding theme I have to share with you! 


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This past weekend I ventured up to go visit my sister during her last weekend in Northern Virginia, did a few of the bridesmaid's hair for a wedding and then also was able to go to the wedding to celebrate with the bride and groom. Being a sucker for weddings this past weekend was something I was looking forward to for a while. This all got started when my sister's roommate got engaged and she asked me if I could help get some of her bridesmaids ready by doing their hair. So, my sister and I decided to make a fun weekend out of it while I would be in town. On Friday we went out to dinner with some friends, Saturday I was on hair duty in the morning and then we both had the ceremony and reception to attend that afternoon, and by Sunday we went out for a nice breakfast before I had to head home. I made sure to take some pictures of my favorite things from the wedding so that I could share them with you today!

Here are two of the bridesmaids all ready for the wedding day. 
My sister and I at the reception.
The bride and groom chose a lovely yellow and gray for their wedding colors. Our wedding favor, sunglasses with their wedding date on them, was waiting at our seat. They also had fun with creating their table names. They named all their tables after their favorite animated shows, movies and games. We were seated at the Rugrats table.
For a personal touch the bride and groom put together an album of their engagement pictures for guests to sign. They also had extra engagement pictures for all the guests to take with them.
And you cannot forget about the cake. The couple chose a beautifully designed cake using a light yellow and incorporating in a gorgeous lace detail. The best part of the cake, besides how delicious it was, was the surprise that the bride added at the base. She had the cake decorator take one of the groom's favorite characters and had him "trapped" under the cake. 
The bride and groom had a wonderful ceremony and reception with everything running so smoothly. My sister and I had tons of fun, met some great people at our Rugrats table and went went home exhausted from enjoying all the wedding festivities. What is your favorite part when you attend a wedding?


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Need a reason to enjoy some delicious ice cream today? I can't think of any better reason than it is National Ice Cream Day! For me there is nothing better than enjoying ice cream on a hot summer day. It might not be the easiest dessert to enjoy as you race against the heat and how quick the ice cream melts, but I am never one to turn down this sweet treat. You can set up an ice cream sundae bar, make a batch of ice cream cupcakes, or just grab a spoon and eat it out of the carton (don't worry I won't tell!). Right now I am loving the idea of making your own ice cream sandwiches. This is so easy to do and the combinations are endless. Here are a few great DIY ice cream sandwich ideas that I am sure will inspire you in celebration of today.

I love this pink chocolate sandwich cookies from Not So Humble Pie. She has a great wafer cookie recipe that will have your ice cream sandwiches disappearing before they have time to melt. 
This Italian Classic Ice Cream Sandwich recipe by Italian Chips will have you salivating to try these sandwiches before you are finished making them. Her homemade biscuit recipe is made in true Italian fashion!
And if all else fails buy a box of graham crackers and a carton of ice cream and you are ready to roll! What is your favorite type of ice cream treat? Happy National Ice Cream Day!!!


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I love hosting events for almost any occasion, but summertime events are by far my favorite. Summer is the perfect time to host a multitude of events. From an outdoor BBQ to a sit-down reception and everything in between, the options are endless. Just like with any other party you may be hosting it is always important to make sure that you have everything covered when hosting an event outdoors. The other day at the gym I read this great article by Mindy Weiss, event planner extraordinaire, where she shares some great tips to help you plan the perfect summer party.

  • Even if you are expecting warm, wonderful weather, ALWAYS have a rain plan! And, if you plan for your party to go on into the night, you may also need heaters. You never know what the weather is going to be like so be prepared for everything.
  • Always greet your guests with the offering of a drink, preferably something crisp and cool. A nice cool drink is the perfect thing to enjoy during a hot summer evening.
  • It's wonderful to provide a parasol, shade, or even a fan when having an outdoor summer party. At the end of the day you want your guests to remember how amazing the day was and not how they were hot.
  • If you're planning a sit down dinner, set your table the evening before (unless you are eating outside). You don’t want to be running around at the last minute and taking this off your list will allow you to be able to relax when your guests start to arrive.
  • Remember to place your flowers out last, so that the sun and humidity does not drain them of their natural beauty.
  • Your music choice should not be over-powering: soft enough so your guests can hear their conversation and enjoying to all.
  • You should open your door to welcome your guests looking like you didn't lift a finger all day. If you time things right then you should be able to offer your guests a cocktail and conversation as you invite them in.
  • If you don't have a table large enough for everyone to sit at, then make sure you do have enough seating for your guests. Depending on your menu, most guests do not like to eat dinner standing up.
  • Don't forget to stock the guest bathroom before the party. Place flowers or a fragrant candle in the guest bathroom as well as hand towels and extra toilet paper. Details will be noticed and remembered.

Now you are ready to host the perfect summer party! What other tips do you have for hosting a party during the summer?


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Happy Hump Day! 
I just could not resist sharing that today. I always love short clips or pictures that can make you smile and put you in a happy mood. Always, onto the rest of my post now!

One of my favorite things about events and weddings is establishing a theme to center your creativity around. When it comes to weddings I have seen couples who just stick with the traditional wedding as well as the ones that like to go all out and theme their wedding off of their favorite sports team. One of my favorite reasons for watching Four Weddings on TLC is to see what crazy wedding themes some of those brides come up with. Here are 5 new wedding themes from The Knot that you are sure to see this year.

1. English Romance. Elegant roses, classic lace and gilded gold accents are the staples in this garden themed wedding.
2. Great Gatsby Glamour. This is one theme that has come roaring back into style. Go above and beyond with elaborate black and gold embellishments that will take people back to the 1920’s. 
3. Mod. The use of bold colors and graphic prints is perfect for the bride and groom looking to a modern and fresh wedding design.
4. Homestead Elegance. The outdoor reception theme is a favorite to all those who are looking for that romantic and natural feel.
5. Geeked-Out. Brides and grooms are loving incorporating Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and more into their big day.
It does not matter what type of theme you decide to go with on your wedding day as long as it fits who you are and makes you happy. Make sure to come back over the next few weeks as I go down the wedding checklist when it comes to creating some of my favorite wedding themes. What is your favorite wedding theme?


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Last week the girl's and I decided that it had been way to long since we had one of our girl's night dinners. With all our schedules finally settling down a bit we finally were able to set a date for our next outing. It just so happened that this month featured the semi-annual Restaurant Week event in Charlottesville, so we decided to change it up a little and instead of cooking in we decided to opt for a night out on the town.

In case you missed my post about Restaurant Week that I shared with you all this past winter here is a brief synopsis of what it is. Twice a year local restaurants come together and offer three-course fixed menus at 1 of 3 price points with $1 of every meal going towards a local charity. This time all the money raised was going to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Virginia. The best part of Restaurant Week? This is always a great time to try out some of the "pricier" restaurants in town as these fixed menus always offer their same great food at a cheaper price.

For those of you who have been following along you might know by now this group is one that loves food so this was one event we were all excited to take part in. After scanning through the menus it was decided that we wanted to try out Blue Light Grill since none of us had been there before and their menu sounded delicious. Here are some pictures of what I got to enjoy during our dinner last week.

There were three appetizers that sounded delicious to all of us. So we decided to each or one with a double of the goat cheese & lump crab hushpuppies with pimento cheese, which is what I ordered. I am now on the hunt for a similar recipe as they were delicious.
For the main meal I could not wait to try the seared scallops with watermelon two ways in a white balsamic reduction. I wasn’t lying when I said I was a sucker for summer fruits! It doesn’t seem like a lot but I still took home half of this as I was trying to save room for dessert.
And for dessert I ordered the cherry empanada with brown sugar gelato. I do not know how I managed to make it to the dessert part of dinner but somehow managed to enjoy every bite of this delicious dessert.
We all had an amazing time, left filled to the brim with amazing food as well as leftovers to enjoy later. I cannot wait until the next time Restaurant Week comes around! Does your city host a similar type of event where you live?


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