The Prettiest (book release) Party Ever

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I can't believe it's been nearly a month since Beautifully Interrupted released into the world. The party held in my backyard just days before it officially, launched was one of the most spectacular + meaningful days of my life. I'm so humbled to tell you that friends flew in, found sitters, and even canceled weekend plans simply to help figure out how in the world to make a balloon installation.

It. Was. Perfect.

Except that I forgot to take silly photos of us laughing and playing and getting everything ready...and us in the midst of the party when it was in full swing. Bummer!!

Even so, I have about five and a half million photos to share of the most spectacular day. To those of you who came, helped, and supported...I don't know how I'll ever be able to explain how much it mean to me.

Ready for the fun pics??? Ok good.

Let's just start with the cake...because I'm pretty obsessed with it.

I've recently found the most incredible little bakery here in Denver, aptly named Happy Bake Shop because walking through its doors makes me instantly happy. The owner is as kind as she is a gifted baker and every morsel I've eaten is to die for (including the vegan and dairy-free cupcakes).

**Totally off-topic but our family munched on Happy Bake Shop's Lemon + Elderflower cupcakes while watching Megan and Harry's wedding...the royal couple's wedding cake flavor. It was sublime).**

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The gorgeous flowers are from my dear friends over at Something Styled (see the pics below of the darling + happy centerpieces they also made).

The flowers were placed on the cake by yours truly...took me a couple tries to get it to look the way I wanted. I was crossing my fingers that I didn't destroy the cake in the meantime (I kinda put a lot of holes from the stems all over the place)...thankfully the flora covered up all my puncture holes and the end product was fantastic! The adorable sprinkles are from Shop Sweet Lulu.

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The fun coral and peach frosted rosebud cookies are also from Happy Bake Shop (True story: there were only a few cookies left over after the party and I hid them in the cabinet behind the quinoa. Yes, I hoarded them for myself...THAT'S how good they are, hahahaha).

We sprinkled rose petals on the lemon bars as well as all over the beautiful charcuterie board. The Raspberry Rose spread for atop the fancy cheeses was just as pretty as it was tasty!

My sweet husband surprised us with the adorable donuts that morning, and sprinkling some edible gold stars on them, made them even more party-worthy!

The floral napkins and hexagonal paper plates can be found in these links!

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See this gorgeous girl below? This is my best friend (of 20 years), Kiesha...she's going to kill me for including this photo but I don't care because she basically planned the whole event all the way from DC. You know she needs a shout out.

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When you expect nearly 100 people for a party, somewhere to beautifully store glassware is always a big concern. After brainstorming a few ideas, I decided to bring down this caned bookshelf I found at Goodwill a few months back. It was so cute, I just loved it set up next to our drink table.

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Have you ever heard of One Hope Wine? We received a bottle a Christmas or two ago and have been in love with the mission (and the yummy wine) ever since. If you don't know their story, click here. We're so honored that they came alongside us to celebrate this special day!

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Our mimosa bar was complete with Rose Lemonade, and a whole slew of juices (FYI, healthy mint-infused green juice is SO not good with a little bubbly poured in. Just don't do it. It's disgusting. You're welcome.)

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Because I knew some children would likely come (i.e. my own six), I wanted something entertaining for them...and for us...so I asked if perhaps my dear artist-friend Jessie would be willing to paint "floral tattoos". It was just so fun. The kids loved it and so did the grown-ups!

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Can we just talk about our photo backdrop for a minute?

Using some PVC pipe we typically use for the screen on our outdoor movie nights, I hung a yellow and white checked vintage sheet and covered it with paper streamers of differing colors, widths, and lengths.

And then...the FLOWERS!!!! I'm still freaking out and pinching myself that working with Katya Paperie became reality. Katya handmade hundreds of paper flowers to be mailed out to the Influencers (other authors, Instagrammers with larger followings, etc), along with my book.

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She also handmade these massive beauties specifically for our party. Can you even handle how gorgeous they are???

Sweet Katya also made this singular large rose for the Book Signing Table. It was the perfect accompanyment for the gorgeous flowers friends brought as gifts.

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Speaking of the Book Signing Table...let's just go ahead and swoon over it. Ready??

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I know. Those balloons. I can't believe this actual thing is in my own backyard. It's too pretty, I can't handle it. This kind of thing is only on Pinterest. No it's not...it's in MY actual backyard. WHAT?!

I just cannot believe it.

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Erin, the sister of my friend Sarah (from Something Styled, and did all our live-flowers) is just as crazy creative as her flora-loving sibling. Erin asked if I needed help with anything and I sent her a Pinterest photo asking if she knew how to make a balloon installation (fully expecting to her to shrug and say no).

Instead, she texted back a list of all the things I needed to purchase and came over the day before the party, spending hours sewing them all together and stringing them with fishing line. There are over 200 balloons in this baby, believe it or not.

Check out a bit of the balloon setup in this little video (below) that I sent to a friend who was unable to fly in for the event.

The little details are my favorite part... from the vintage sheets used as table cloths, to the Anthropologie tea cups and saucers with tiny plants inside, the lawn games with matching pieces, and floral everything.

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We scoured our local nursery for anything pink, coral, blush, and peach and planted the colors of my book cover throughout the front and back yards.

My mom and I kept laughing as we remembered Father of the Bride and how they took a hair dryer to the tulips after it snowed...because we had several inches a week prior to this big event and I was just so nervous it'd happen again.

May in Colorado...you just never know what you're going to get!

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Here's another little video taken as the party was just beginning.

And PS these flowers from Something Styled really just made everything come together. See those tiny daisy-looking things? Those are chamomile!! Who knew that's what they looked like?

Aren't they the cutest?!

For some reason sections of our lawn didn't come back this spring and we didn't have time to roll out new sod before this event, so I had to think outside the box on how to detract from the large patches of dirt in places where lush green grass should be growing!

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I decided to purchase a bunch of outdoor rugs from World Market and build a little "living room" area. By piling up and spreading out these rugs and brining out some of our furniture from throughout the house, we put together the sweetest little sitting area.

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We also brought out the plants from my office and bedroom to help bring more life to the space and used the caned screen to detract from some broken parts of our old fence behind.

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The lawn games from Rustic Road Designs were another really fun element to the party, especially for the kids who came.

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We stored the pieces in cute baskets next to each game and loved seeing kids of all ages laughing while playing around.

And also loved that I was able to specify what color I wanted the Giant Connect Four pieces and Cornhole beanbags to be (in this case, I wanted black + white)!

We've used the lawn games for several parties lately and have been really impressed by how they're holding up...even with kids stepping all over them. Not that I'd recommend kids walking down a Cornhole game, but they're super sturdy and beautifully well-made. We just love them!

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I still can't believe after several years of waking at four in the morning to write before the kids wake, my book is a reality and my release party actually took place.

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My heart still beats fast when simply seeing the cover because this is my heart poured out onto page. And while it feels like I'm standing naked before the world to see and judge, I feel excitement and peace, knowing it was a book the Lord asked me to write...He definitely interrupted my life once again.


A big, HUGE thank you to all who came to support me and gave time and product to ensure this party and Beautifully Interrupted's release, was a marvelous success. Especially Crystal Miller Creative for all the gorgeous photos!!

Something Styled . Happy Bake Shop . One Hope Wine . Rustic Road Design

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NOTE: If you have photos of your own from that day, or any of you reading the book, please post on social media with the hashtag #beautifullyinterrupted. Can't wait to see your photos!!!! xo

Take Joy,

Teresa

P.S. I'd be SO honored if you'd consider posting photos from the party on your Pinterest page!! OR even doing an Amazon review of the book!! Thanks sweet friend! xoxo

Slushy Blush Cocktails (recipe)

Since I've been sharing a lot about hospitality lately, I thought I'd share a quick little recipe for one of my favorite party drinks.

I'm a huge fan of doing as much as possible in advance of a party, so I love making these slushy cocktails in small mason jars a few days beforehand and place them in the freezer.

SLUSHY BLUSH RECIPE:

. 1 can frozen concentrated pink lemonade (thawed)
. 36oz pineapple juice (instead of mixing concentrate with water, use the juice)
. Vodka to taste.

. Combine into large mixing bowl, then with a ladle, spoon into individual jars (I used these from Walmart). Then place into the freezer. The alcohol doesn't freeze, but the juice does...making it slushy!

Serve in a basket or bucket with spoons or brightly colored paper straws!

That's it!!

Told ya it was easy!! They're a hit every time I serve them...bet they will be for you, too!

When (not if!!) you do have a little get together for some friends or neighbors, post your pics on Instagram and tag me on my hashtag #letspartylikegirls!! I can't wait to see your photos!!

TAKE JOY,

TERESA

throwing a simple + do-able dinner party (recipes)

Earlier this week I shared with you my dinner party I called An Evening to Nourish. Well, today, I'd love to give you the recipes from that evening.

I love throwing parties. Kid parties, dinner parties, play dates, it doesn't matter.

BUT...it's the food part that always puts me over the edge.

I didn't want to be that flustered hostess!

I didn't want to be in the kitchen with final details and timing meats and vegetables to come out together and stressing about well, stressing out about the whole thing.

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So I spent a good while on Pinterest (do you follow me on Pinterest? click here if you want to!) brainstorming a menu that was simple and yet beautifully hearty enough to serve for dinner.

Everything I made was simple + had the ability to be (almost entirely) made ahead!

In the future, I'll likely begin to do it more Potluck style. But for this particular evening, I simply asked the ladies to bring either a bottle of wine or an appetizer/tapas type dish.

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Now remember, I asked all my guests to bring either something to drink or an appetizer so this isn't the only one for the evening. I'd recommend maybe perhaps 3 different items for a party of 10ish people.

(need more ideas? click here.)

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As you'll see, I had plenty of kid-help for our dinner.

Don't kick them out of the kitchen...teach them! Make it fun!

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What I decided to make has been a big favorite since traveling to Italy and realizing tomatoes aren't disgusting:

Caprese Skewers with balsamic reduction.

Don't be scared off by the idea of making reduction. I thought I would screw it up, but it was fantastic.

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INGREDIENTS:

Cherry tomatoes, halved

Fresh mozzarella balls

Fresh basil

Toothpics (and washi tape to make flags, if desired)

DIRECTIONS:

Using tooth pics, skewer mozzarella, tomato, and basil (fold leaf in half and poke stick through). Make sure you're arranging them in a way they can stand on their own after being put together.

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Balsamic Reduction:

1/2 cup balsamic venegar

2 tbsp brown sugar, packed

Add balsamic vinegar and brown sugar to a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a slight boil and reduce by half, for around 6-8 minutes; set aside and let cool. It will thicken after cooling.

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salad 1

Because I wanted something I could make ahead, I tossed together several bowls of my own variation of nicoise salad.

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I love using these rainbow potatoes (which I simply find at our neighborhood grocery store) and slice them thinly and place them into a pan in a single layer.

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Now don't hate me, but I don't measure. I just pour olive oil into a ramekin or small bowl and crush a clove of garlic into the it, along with some fresh rosemary, and a bit of salt and pepper.

And then I (or the kids) simply brush it on both sides of each slice of tomato.

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Then, sliding the pan into the oven at 400 degrees, I roast them for 2o minutes, checking them all the while to make sure they're not getting too dark.

At the 20 minute mark, I flip each slice so the other side can bake, again still keeping an eye on them every few minutes.

Super simple. Promise.

salad

TERESA'S NICOISE-ISH SALAD

INGREDIENTS:

Pre-packaged kale + brussels sprouts salad (I don't use all the other fixings in the bag, just the greens)

Pitted kalamata olives

Sliced heirloom tomatoes

Rosemary Roasted Potatoes (recipe above)

Pine nuts

Capers

 DIRECTIONS:

Just dump a bunch of it in. Whatever ratio looks good to you...that's right, just toss it in!

NOTE:

You'll notice this is a vegetarian option since I wasn't sure how all of my guests ate. Some rotisserie or roasted chicken would also be fantastic in here, as well!

dressing

SALAD DRESSING:

Now don't freak out, I didn't make all these myself. I just wanted to try my hand at one. And goodness, why don't I mix my own more often?! It was so crazy easy.

The others however, are simply re-packaged. Because truly, how much prettier does this look than a bunch of boring 'ol grocery store salad dressings?!

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NOTE: Those dressings which I did not make were purchased in the chilled salad section at our neighborhood grocery store, as well as Trader Joe's. That Cilantro Garlic dressing? Trader Joe's. And you seriously need it. I use it on everything (not just salad).

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GARLIC BASIL VINAIGRETTE:

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup tightly packed basil leaves (roughly chopped)

1 clove garlic

1/2 cup olive oil

2 tbsp red wine vinegar

1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper

1 tsp salt

DIRECTIONS:

Put it all into a jar and shake together. I know...whew! Super hard.

NOTE:

I double or tripled this recipe. So pay attention to how much you're making and how much you need for your party!

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dessert

I envisioned using my grandma's tea cups for some sort of chocolate something, so when looking around, I knew chocolate mousse would be the perfect make-ahead dessert!

And it's SO CRAZY SIMPLE!

All you use is water + chocolate...and it takes FIVE minutes!

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FIVE MINUTE CHOCOLATE MOUSSE:

INGREDIENTS:

9.35 oz  bittersweet chocolate (preferable 70% cocoa), chopped

1 cup water

4 tbsp sugar, optional

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DIRECTIONS:

1.

Place a large mixing bowl on top of another slightly smaller one, filled with ice and cold water (the bottom of the large bowl should touch the ice). Set aside

2.

Put chocolate and water (also sugar and/or liquor if you're using) in a medium-sized pan and melt the chocolate over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

3.

Pour the melted chocolate into the mixing bowl bowl sitting on top of ice and water, and start whisking with a wire whisk (or an electrical hand-held mixer) until thick. Watch the texture as you whip and make sure not to over-whip as it will make the mousse grainy. If it does become grainy (which is possible at your first try), transfer it back into the pan, reheat until half of it is melted, pour it back to the mixing bowl and whisk again briefly.

4.

Divide into four serving cups and either chill for later or serve immediately

NOTES: I recommend using a wire whisk when whipping together + since this recipe serves 4, I tripled it!

(recipe originally found here)

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drink

Though we enjoyed wine through dinner, I usually make a fun cocktail when friends come over.

I'm calling it Champagne Lemonade.

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INGREDIENTS:

1 bottle champagne or prosecco

1 can frozen pink lemonade concentrate (thawed)

1 cup vanilla vodka (chilled)

fresh lemon + raspberries for garnish (optional)

NOTE: this time I used raspberry lemonade and it was too sweet! don't make the mistake I did!

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Remember, this is supposed to be fun! Forget about the gourmet something you want to serve if it makes you a stressed out mess before the event!

This is about gathering with friends...it is NOT about the food!

Though they might leave remembering how wonderful things tasted upon their palate, it's not what they'll remember weeks from now.

What will your guests remember?

The experience, the togetherness, the conversation.

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