Planning a dinner party can be a scary task to face. There are an infinite amount of choices one can make. From what to serve, how to serve, what drinks to provide, and what foods or ingredients are off limits due to allergies. The list can honestly go on and on till you find yourself with a five hundred item check list for a dinner party of 10. Since I now the nervous anticipation that can accompany your dinner party. I thought I would share with you a quick dinner party planning guide that I have refined over the years.
Atmosphere is key in most situations!
It's what sets the tone/mood for the entire night. I'm currently planning on hosting a relaxing dinner with friends. There is nothing I love more than sipping wine after a wonderful meal talking with friends that bring me such joy. My dinner party in this instance is going to be more casual and chill. therefore this guide will not be very detail oriented. For instance like napkin color or fork placement. I have planned many dinner parties in various levels of intensity. If you have never planned a dinner party or hosted one before. I do suggest while very brave in pursuit going all in and hosting a five course dinner equipped with a dessert table and entertainment. I do honestly recommending dipping your toes in to start with and opting to host something more casual and chill as your introductory dinner into dinner party hosting.
One of the basics in dinner party hosting and most important is Atmosphere. Think about the feeling that you want people to catch when they walk through the doors. Do you want them to feel excited, happy, calm, hungry, etc.. For this dinner I would like my friends to feel clam and relaxed. I want them to instantly feel comfortable and welcomed. In order to achieve this vibe, I have decided that I would like to have a lower lighting setting so that I can place candle all around the upstairs portion of my home. I am going to make sure that all of my candles are unscented. So that the smell of delicious food is the thing that immediately hits my friends nostrils. I also want my friends to feel cozy and warm so I am doing to make sure that I turn the heater on a comfortable setting for everyone to feel warm, but not hot and irritable.
Don't Forget The Music!
Music is technically a subcategory of Atmosphere, but is important that it must be mentioned on it's own. For my dinner I want to achieve a mellow clam vibe. I'm thinking that I will play soft jazz or one of my favorite stations Andrea Bocelli Radio.
Your choice in music and your choice in volume. Are two things that while can be said simply are in actuality so important that if you think too much about it you drive yourself crazy. So if your are feeling a little over whelmed, don't over think it just go with your gut. If all else fails and come the dinner the music just isn't working. Ask one of your guests to pick. Opening up this line will also help to start conversation between your guests about musical taste and preference. While music helps set the tone Conversation in dinner parties is the thing that is going to bring meaning and fulfilment to your party.
The table set up depends on how you want to serve the food. If you would like to have a more buffet style then all you need on the dinner table are the essentials, unless you opt to have them placed next to the food for your guests to grab as they begin to eat. If this route is chosen then your table may only house some beautiful décor. If you would like to produce more of a family style dinner. Then you would need to think about food dish placement. As well as the placement of the essentials like plates, forks, and cups. If this is the path you choice then you may want to opt out on the décor or limit it. So that the focus can be on the food and so that it is easy for guest to fill their plates.
I am going to go the family style route. I have chosen this for a few reasons. I would like to invoke that family get together feeling. As a cheat code I am going to start off with it being in that set up. I also wish for my friends to conversate with one another without much distraction. Therefore I am going to eliminate to possibility for one to not be able to see another's face because décor is in the way. I also do not want for them to be continually getting up and breaking a conversation in order to get more food. By putting the food on the table with my guests and by not having table décor I am hoping to achieve said desires.
Having a theme usually helps when planning the dinner menu.
You can also pick food that are your gests or your favorites.
I am going for a more simple and familiar dishes.
I will be serving soup, salad, past, bread, and cake.
For beverages I will have the options of wine, water, and soda.
Here's a quick checklist for you guys!
- Décor … Candles
-Food Serve Style
-Appetizers .. Soup/Salad
-Entrée .. Pasta with Bread
-Dessert .. Cake
-Drink .. Alcohol/Non Alcoholic
Remember to enjoy your company the more you have planned ahead.
The more time you give yourself to enjoy the night.
I hope your next dinner part is a smash!
Show me the different ways you chose to make your dinner party unique to your beautiful soul.
I hope you have a wonderful weekend.
With much love and admiration, ThavinMarcob
One of my favorite aspects of Fall is feeling the temperature begin to drop a few degrees. I absolutely love the cold weather and welcome it with open arms. When the time presents itself I do like to indulge in a toasty warm spiked beverage every now and again.
I thought today I would share with you my current go to recipes
for that deliciously warm perfect Fall spiked beverage.
Delectiable Hot Apple Cider
Hot apple cider alone makes my mouth water with just it's delicious smell.
Recently we were experimenting and realized that paired with Brandy
an adult friendly Fall themed cup of goodness is born.
If you find yourself hosting a party this Fall. Mugs of Delectable Hot Apple Cider is the beverage choice everyone is sure to love. If you have the time try and make it from scratch. I know that I am definitely going to try sometime this season.
Make It Photo Worthy
I'm always too excited to warm up my belly with this sweet apple cider concoction to make it
"photo worthy", but if you're feeling it. Decorate your mug of hot apple cider with a cinnamon stick or with a slice of apple.
Ticklish Sweet Hot Chocolate
This is a recipe that my husband and 22 year old daughter crafted one evening before a family movie night. I'm not a huge fan of Hot Chocolate, but I've got to admit this one is quite the cup of scrumptious sweetness.
Make It Photo Worthy
Sprinkle a few marshmallows over the top or you luscious cup of coco. Take it a bit further and drizzle chocolate sauce over the top or dust over some coco powder.
A Heavenly Good Morning
Now this is one of my all time favorites that I have been drinking for years. I absolutely love coffee. I honestly maybe drink too much a day, but I just can not go for long without a steaming caffeinated cup of coffee in reach.
Make It Photo Worthy
Drizzle over chocolate or caramel sauce. If you're in it to win it dazzle your friends by accenting your cup with milk froth or chocolate shavings.
I hope you enjoy our recipes.
Make sure to tag us if you make some this Fall.
Have any favorites of your own?
Share with us we would love to expand out horizons with your help.
*Please make sure to follow the rules and regulations of you nation
when drinking anything that contains alcohol. Do not drink and drive.
As well as always to drink responsibly.
We love you and hope you have a happy Wednesday.
Self Care is something that is often overlooked even thought it does truly hold much importance. When the kids where younger and my husband traveled out of town for work. I confidently considered myself the queen of 15 minute selfcare ideas!
Here's my list of Efficient and Inexpensive Self Care Ideas
Try a new one everyday and see how you feel!
Self Care Ideas
1. Play your favorite song and allow your self to dance like no one is watching!
2. Toss a pillow on the floor and get comfortable.
Breathe in and out for 15 minutes allowing yourself to clear your mind.
3. Stretch your muscles for 15 minutes, nothing that's going to bring a sweat on.
Just a nice stretch out getting the blood moving through your body .
4. Take a cat nap! ( this one is my favorite)
5. Relax out on the porch and enjoy the scenery around you!
6. Take a walk even if it's just around the block or to the end of the driveway.
7. Journal writing is the perfect way to get all your thoughts together.
8. Sip on some coffee in your favorite spot.
9. Relax with a hot washcloth draped over face.
10. Just be you and do something you enjoy.
Decluttering or Organizing can help with the self care process.
It allows you to feel in total control of something, which is not always the case in life.
Here are a few ideas for some Decluttering/Organizing Self Care.
1. Toss out all that make up you didn't like or never use.
2. Clean out your closet and reorganize it. This way it is easier to find the perfect outfit for next week.
3. Clean out the junk drawer, we all have one.
You know that drawer that holds everything and nothing all at the same time.
4. Change your sheets.
5. Organize the pantry so grocery shopping is a little easier.
6. Clean off your work space at home.
7. Toss out or donate things you no longer need that are laying around the house.
8. Rake up the leaves.
9. Organize your hall closet.
10. Clean out the garage. Even if it's a little everyday eventually the job will get done.
Have A Little Cash
Have a little cash to spend then here are some of my favorite Self Care ideas on how to use it.
1. Spa Facial
2. Salon Manicure
3. Spa Pedicure
4. Gym membership
6. Lunch out at your favorite restaurant.
7. A trip to the local Book Store.
8. Coffee at your favorite Coffee House.
9. Ice cream
10. Splurge on something you don't need, but just want.
Affirmations are real
Affirmations are not only real, but studies show that they are pretty helpful.
Here's a few of my favorites.
1. You got this
2. Your are worthy
3. You are successful
4. Today is a new day to be a new you
6.I'm grateful for the new day
7. I love who I am today
8. I can stretch the limits of the limitations I have placed on myself.
9. I can accept my failures and strive to accomplish the impossible.
10. There is no other one like me in this world, I am unique!
Do you do any of my favorite Self Care ideas?
Share using #ThavinMarcob
Have any favorites I don't know about?
Comment and let me know. I am always looking for news ways to Self Care.
I hope you have a wonderful day!
A few months ago we purchased my forever dream home. I'm really excited because for the first time in a long time I can finally decorate and have no restrictions on my imagination because I own the place. I recently redecorated my bedroom as those of you who follow us on Instagram might already know. Today I thought I would share a few of my favorite decorating hacks that I used to create the perfect cozy master bedroom.
While we were in the market of looking for a new home I started collecting décor elements that I wanted to have in my room. My room doesn't really have a theme per say it has more of a I liked it so I got it.
Where We Started
We started with paint. Paint is always the cheapest upgrade you can give your room. It takes a bit of time and prep work, but it instantly gives you a new look and can be completed in a weekend.
I wanted my room to feel open and fresh therefore I chose a designer white. If I'm honest I would love my whole house to be designer white. I just love the crisp clean feel of it. Even though my paint came with a primer I still decided to prime before putting that first coat of paint on it. Since I have a fantastic group of men in my life they were able to help me get this done really quick! It took us about 45 minutes to prime, then we waited a day to place the first coat of paint. We then waited one more day to place on the last coat.
While the walls were drying, we were able to get a few other projects done.
I really wanted a few wall shelves in my room right between the two windows across from my bed. So it was a quick trip to the hardware store to pick up a few pieces of wood and some shelving brackets. These shelves were a little under $10.00 each and are pretty basic.
We sanded down the wood to make sure it was smooth, stained it in the morning, allowed it to dry, then lightly sanded before putting on a second coat of stain. I loved the color after the second coat. So we went ahead and sanded very lightly then placed a clear coat on top of it.
For Christmas last year my special guy gave me this absolutely beautiful hand painted mud cloth. It was my favorite gift last year. It was a wonderful surprise and I hadn't really decided what I wanted to do with it. Although when we finished painting it hit me. I knew exactly where I wanted to place it! Right above of bed. I love the look, but most importantly I love the fact that it was a gift from my special guy!
I found these cheap frames at one of the local department stores and filled the up with some of my favorite photos from moments that I not only cherish, but also bring a smile to face as well a little warmth in my heart!
I loved the idea of having a built in make up counter, but in reality I hated how it looked. I decided to only add two shelves onto the wall when I really anticipated putting up more. So I had a few pieces of wood left over and guess what it will work to build myself a counter that I love!
The counter took quite a few days to get together because I had to get back to work and it was a little more complicated then I had originally realized.
First day we glued the two pieces together
Second day we filled it with wood filler
Third day we sanded and refilled with wood filler
Fourth day we were able to start staining
Fifth day second coat of stain went one,
my special guy does not normally do the staining and was in aww when I told him that you should always do a light sanding in between coats.
Sixth day clear coat was added.
We then allowed the counter to set outside for a few days before placing in in the room.
We were lucky enough not to have a new frame for the counter the old one worked fantastic!
Wood Framed Mirror
Eventually I would like to change this mirror out for a circular one, but I want to wait till I find the perfect one. In the mean time I decided to go ahead and purchase one of those inexpensive door mirrors for 5.00 and created a wood frame for it. This was put together in a few days, I didn't actually make it I just told my special guy how to do it and he seemed to get it done fairly quickly.
It's Not Done Yet
Even with all of these changes I'm not done decorating yet. I can't seem to find the perfect curtains. I am also still on the hunt for a cute light fixture for above my makeup counter.
My room is feeling so much more like us.
I'm loving our adventures and working together to create a home
What are some house projects you have just embarked on?
Share using #ThavinMarcob we would love to hear about your exciting projects.
Photo Annie Spratt - UnSplash
Flowers are hands down one of the easiest ways to bring a little sunshine into your home. The great thing is that you do not need an elaborate expensive bouquet of flowers. You can easily invite sunshine into your home with wild flowers you pick out of the forest.
Here are My Top Five ways to add flowers into your home!
The Kitchen in my opinion is the easiest room to add a welcoming group of flowers to. I found this Silver Pitcher at a thrift store for $3.00 roughly 10 years ago. This is the perfect example of ones of those amazing thrift store finds. Even 10 years later it is still being used. In the image below all I did was add a simple $20.00 bouquet of flowers I found at my local grocery store. The great thing that I love about this vase and bouquet is that it travels so well to our outside dinner table.
Special Side Note:
If you desire a year round feeling. Something that can easily move from season to season without missing a beat. Try potting some herds. They can be easily found and are typically inexpensive to obtain.
Oila Gozha - UnSplash
I love waking up to the smell of flowers next to my bed. There is no better smell on a Monday morning than the smell of fresh flowers. I love to have small bouquets all around my room. This way the aroma of the wonderful flowers encapsulates my room. As if I were sleeping in a peaceful secret little garden escape of my own.
Photo Autumn Mott - UnSplash
Special Side Note:
Keep things inexpensive by using Mason Jars to place your flowers in. You can also just as easily use old Spaghetti Jars.
Photo Annie Spratt - UnSplash
The Entry Way
If you have an entry way in your home. Take advantage of the perfect place to place an arrangement of flowers. It is a great place to first invite the sunshine into your home. I personally love to hang rosemary off of our door.
Special Side Note:
A Great way to save money and invite the Sunshine into your house is yo utilize potted plants.Head over to your local farmers market or local gardening center. You can typically always find great flowers or herbs on the cheap.
Photo Markus Spiske - UnSplash
Flowers in my opinion are a Great way to invite Sunshine into your home. Spend a few minutes picking wild flowers and place them in a mason jar. It's a great way to not only brighten up your home, but also your day.
Share your Flowers with us through the Comments Section or using #ThavinMarcob. We would love to see the bouquets that fill your life.
Christmas Is Coming!
Which only means Tons of Shopping and Tons of Gift Wrapping! Both Shopping and Wrapping have their Ups and Downs. It can be Incredibly Frustrating Trying to Find that Perfect Gift. It can also be Incredibly Irritating knowing that Each Item then has to be Wrapped Perfectly.
One thing that My Family Loves to Do During The Holidays to make Gift Wrapping more Fun is Creating
Here are a Few of our Hacks when it comes to making your own. If you have Never Tried, Give it a Try. If you make your own Give Our Hacks a Go and Share How You Create Yours.
We Tend to Collect Stuff throughout the Entire Year. Making this Project Relatively Inexpensive. We like to Visit our Local Thrift Stores as well as Search our House for Supplies that we could Repurpose.
You Are Going To Need:
A Hot Glue Gun
String, Yarn, or Ribbon
An Item to Wrap--Like Old Napkin Rings, Wooden Craft Squares, or Mansion Jar Lids.
Place a Little Dab of Hot Glue on the Inside of the Ring that you intend to wrap then simply start wrapping.
I usually Cut my String into Two Pieces to make the Wrapping Process a little easier to do.
If you choose to Wrap a Square. I typically like to Add Extra Hot Glue to the Corners.
Here’s a few of the pieces we did for this year.
I Love how Easy these are to do, but what I Love knowing that Everyone gets a Little Something Specially Handcrafted by me for Christmas!
I would Love to see what you guys come up with.
So Share Your Christmas Crafts with Us.
Until next time
EXPLORE and SHOP
Our Boutique This Holiday Season!
Find Great Gifts
For The Special People In Your Life.
Check Out Monday's Blog Post
For Great Last Minute Gift Ideas.
Sometimes the Magic that Christmas Posses can Dwindle because of the Shopping and Gift Giving Pressures. While it may be hard at time it is important to remember that Christmas is about being together and love. One of the things that I love to do and do so every year for some time now. Is Make or DIY my very own Wrapping Paper. I think that it is a Great way not only to Save Money, but show the people you Love just how much you Love them. By DIY-ing your own Wrapping Paper you can take your time to Personalize it. Which only shows the person who receives it how much they mean to you.
Christmas Wrapping Paper
Christmas Wrapping Paper can be a Huge Expense during the Christmas Season. Our Secret is one that Saves some Serious Coin. I like to purchase a Roll of Floor Paper for the Local HardWare Store. It Costs around $15.00 a Roll. Which in Comparison to $10.00 for 25ft is a Steal.
Once you have your Roll of Brown Paper, the Possibilities for Decorating are Endless. You can Leave it Bare are Add a little Piazza of Ribbon. You can Add Stamps to your Wrapping Paper. One Large Statement Stamp or a ton of Smaller Ones. You can even Add Holiday Themed Embellishments. It's Easy, It's Simple, and It's Cheep.
You have the Power to make one Present Elegant and Timeless, another can be Simple and Fun, while another is Chic and Fun. The Possibilities are Endless and Completely Up To You.
If and When I Find some Extra Time I like to Cut out Strips of Paper and Stamp the Paper. This just Adds some Simple Dimension to a Present.
When my children were Younger they used to Draw Pictures on the onto the Wrapping Paper making Each Present a Little More Special.
This Year I Thought it would be Fun to Embellish a few of the Presents with White Pipe Trees. I think that they look Amazing and Seriously Add a Little Spice to the Gift.
I would Love to see how you Decorate Your Gifts. Snap a Pic and Share. I'm Always Looking for new Ways to Jazz Up My Christmas Wrapping.
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October is here and Halloween is right around the corner.
Don't let Halloween catch you by surprise like it so often does me.
We thought that it would be fun this Halloween if we had some
Quick, Easy, and Fashionable Halloween Costumes on hand.
TURN EVERYDAY WEAR INTO HALLOWEEN GREATNESS
Turning Fabulous Everyday Fashions into Halloween Costumes is not only Easy it is Wallet Friendly.
There is No Better Feeling than knowing you look Great and your Wallet Feels Great.
In Today's Blog Post we are Highlighting Two Amazing dresses that can
Easily and Fashionably be turned into Show Stopping Halloween Costumes.
This Frist dress to the Left is a Soft Light Grey Dress with Unique Tie Up Arm Slits that Bellow out.
As well as an Un-Believable Gorgouse Tie Up Front Slit with extra Long String, to hang down for Dramatic effects.
For just any Tuesday this dress would be perfect paired with black boots of ballet flats.
Bonus Bellowed Sleeves are in! So No matter what shoe you pair it with you will always be looking High Fashion.
However when it comes to Tuesday the 31st. This dress makes the perfect Halloween Costume.
This Dress paired with the necessary Witch accessories. Will turn any head that is in your vicinity.
What makes this Halloween Costume Wallet Friendly. Is that you can find all of the necessary Halloween accessories at the Dollar Store.
Our Shopping List:
Bouquet of Flowers
To Add a little something extra we took the Flowers off the stem and glued them to our Witches Hat.
See for yourself.
The Costume turned out Amazing. Not only was it Comfy and Cute.
I can also still wear it after the 31st. Making this Dress a true Gem in my book.
Our Second Custome At Home Fashionable Halloween Costume starts with our second dress to the right.
This Black Embroidered dress is the Pefect mix of Fun and Sophistication.
It is Great for a Night on the Town, at the Office Christmas Party, or even for your Families New Years Celebration.
When it comes to Celebrating Halloween this Dress is still the Perfect Choice.
My Daughter commented that the dress reminded her of Spider Webs.
So while we were at The Dollare Store we picked up A Black Headband and a Large Spider.
With our Trusty Glue we attached that Spider to the Headband and crated our very own Statment Piece.
When you Combine the Black Embroidered Dress, the Statment Spider Head Piece, and Classic Black Heels.
You get yourself one Wonderfully Sophisticated High Fashion Halloween Costume.
Guaranteed to be a Head Turner and a Conversation Starter.
Both of these Halloween Costume Treasures took less than 15 minutes to assemble.
Which is crazy because both outfit look Absolutely Stunning.
Get Started on your versatile Halloween Costume Today at ThavinMarcob.com.
The Summer season for us started with a bang. We welcomed the 2017 Summer by opening up our very first store front location in La Conner WA. I had a blast making all of our display items and using them to showcase all of the wonderful items we carry in our Boutique. After I unfortunately Burned Out a bit a few weeks back. I took the necessary time to wind down and relax at home. Now that I feel more level headed and not so overwhelmed. I feel it is now an appropriate time to Spruce Up My Porch. Not only did this new project give my hands and mind something to do with the free time I find myself. It also was the perfect way to welcome Summer into my home. For me there is no better thing to do on a warm Summer night than to sit outside by myself or with my family and enjoy the wonderful nature around us.
Whenever I embark on a project such as this one. I love to share and show it with all of you who read our LifeStyle Blog. I enjoy sharing my creative side as well as sparking up some inspiration in all of you.
Here is what my porch looked like before.
I started my project of Sprucing Up My Porch with our bench swing. I am aware that the swing looks exceptionally old and like no one has tented to it in quite a few years. However believe it or not a year or so ago I purposely painted and sanded the swing to give off such an impression. I wanted the swing to have a rather weathered look to it. A task in which I believe to be a success, seeing as almost two years later it has still held up the old tattered look. If I'm being truthful a part of me picked this style because I knew it would last. However this time around I decided that I wanted my porch to look clean and sophisticated. So I choose to stain the swing a dark walnut color.
Previously I had some old cushions on the swing. The ones I had before could have been used and still would have given off the impression of sophistication that I wanted. I however simply wanted new ones, so I ordered four new pillows off of Amazon. They were fairly inexpensive and I feel really helped me to achieve the clean look that I wanted to accompany the sophisticated look.
On a side note I purchased the swing at a yard sale a few years back. It was no more than $50 and what I would consider a real steal. It is a wonderful bench swing and make those warm Summer night that much more enjoyable.
The next thing that I did in order to Spruce Up My Porch was I added in some plants. I picked up some planting bins and tins on sale at Home Depot. The bins came in a nice cool green shade while the tins were a shiny silver. Both colors were great alone, however in order to achieve unity as well as a sophisticated clean look. I made the decision to paint the planters a metallic copper color. I used a spray paint called RUST-OLEUM which I also found in Home Depot. However I know you can find this particular color in most hardware stores.
All of the planters in my opinion came out amazing beautiful. I love the copper accent color we chose. I think that it really helps to round out the entire look of the porch.
Once they were dry my daughter started to plant her vegetable garden. She planted Red Lettuce, Green Lettuce, Two Tomato plants, Basil. Spinach, and Parsley. One of her Tomato plants currently has three little tomatoes growing. I am very excited for them to ripen so that I can added them into a delicious Summer salad.
If you end up Sprucing Up Your Porch this Summer. Let us know down in the comments section below or through any of our social medias. We love hearing from you and would love to see the fun new DIY projects you embark on this season.
Thavin & Marcob is a place where you are celebrated for being you!