Holiday Graham Cracker House Decorating Party

* Post sponsored by HONEY MAID graham crackers

I am Soooo excited to share that thanks to HONEY MAID graham crackers I discovered the greatest solution for making a bunch of ginger bread houses to decorate for a party and hand over to a bunch of kiddos- graham cracker houses!!

So, a party must be had with this new found craft and it was a blast!

I picked up all the food supplies from Walmart- HONEY MAID graham crackers, Wilton candy melts, candy, icing, milk  and sprinkles.

I love the holiday season, but I am also a Mom, which means I have about ten thousand things running through my head at all times and despite my knack and love of entertaining- I also like to keep things simple, while at the same time make everything look awesome- with minimal effort.  Which is why every party I share on A Bubbly Life has easy party hacks to make it possible for anyone to do!  And graham cracker houses- anyone can do!

These were so fun to make and I made two sizes with the HONEY MAID graham crackers- one I called the graham cracker mansion and the other the graham cracker mini house.

Graham Cracker Mansion- 4 whole graham crackers and 2 cut with a serrated knife to give a "house" shape.  Connect the sides and the cut house pieces with icing- 2 whole graham crackers for the sides (let dry a bit) then the remaining 2 whole graham crackers for the roof.

Graham Cracker Mini Houses-   The same as the mansion except you are using half of a graham cracker for the side and roof.

The minis were for the kids to decorate:

Kalia wanted her house all pink (apple doesnt fall far from the tree ;) , so I used Wilton candy melts (also picked up from Walmart!) and covered the house for her in pink to decorate.

Each child had their own place card- and it was edible.  A very simple party hack!

How to Make Graham Cracker Cookie Place Cards!

Melt candy in 30 second intervals in microwave until melted.  Stir at the end of each 30 second interval (the package has the directions as well).  Use a bread knife to spread over one HONEY MAID Graham cracker and let dry/harden.  When ready, write the name in icing.  Let dry again and serve at party for a tasty treat as soon as the kids come in!

Each child went home with a little box to carry their graham cracker house, place card and more candy (if they left any of it at the table) and more HONEY MAID graham crackers to eat at home!  I added a glittered tree to each plain white carrying box.

Yummm... HONEY MAID graham crackers and milk.  This combination brings back so many childhood memories.  I loved soaking my graham cracker in the milk until it was almost too soggy and then eat it.  My sister and brother were quick dippers- they always thought I left it too long. But, I loved it.  Party hack: Put milk in a glass bottle and add to an ice bucket! Rim the milk bottles with some sprinkles and put in a straw.  Yep, I just made milk glam.

Christmas holiday parties are the easiest to decorate-  we have so many items we use during the Christmas season that can easily double up as decor.  Party hack- Christmas tree ornaments, tinsel and cookie cutters for table decor!  And, I had everything on had- so it was not only easy but inexpensive.  Also, with graham cracker house decorating parties, there is so much candy- use the candy to brighten up the table!

I loved the white sprinkles I found at Walmart- it made the houses look like snow was on the rooftop!

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Happy decorating!  

Post sponsored by HONEY MAID graham crackers- thank you for supporting sponsors that make A Bubbly Life possible- and yummy!

DIY Party Hacks for Holiday Entertaining!

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Riondo Prosecco through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write a post about Riondo Prosecco, all opinions are my own.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend! I took a break from hosting this year, which was a bit of a bummer, because, as all you readers knows-  I absolutely love, love, LOVE entertaining for the holidays (or any occasion or any day, or it is Monday and I survived the day and my children are still alive type celebrations)  And, I like to keep my entertaining simple AND stylish.  Therefore, I partnered with Riondo Prosecco to bring you a couple simple ideas for celebrating the season with friends.

My love for eucalyptus runs deep.  Per my usual method, I clipped some branches from our eucalyptus tree, but you can purchase eucalyptus and other greens at the grocery store very inexpensively.  Or use some Christmas tree trimmings to decorate.  Party Hack 1- Tie a small branch of eucalyptus around each sparkling wine glass to add some extra flair.  It took maybe 2 minutes to clip and tie.  Simple entertaining.

Prosecco must be cold.  Instead of keeping the prosecco in the refrigerator, I like easy access when unwinding with friends and prefer to keep the prosecco in an ice bucket on the table.  That way we can grab it while chatting away and de-stressing from the holiday rush. So, I made some colorful ice cubes to keep in the bucket.  Party Hack 2- Freeze some eucalyptus leaves, cranberries and pomegranate seeds and you have yourself a pretty ice bucket.  Since the ice cubes are NOT for drinking and chilling the wine bottle, eucalyptus is fine to use, do not use the ice cubes in a drink and drink eucalyptus leaves.  Bonus party hack- I like to use a mini muffin pan because I love the mini muffin pan ice cube shape.

The twist enclosure on the prosecco- Thank you.  Have you ever gotten home from one of those super long days and said holy cr*p, I am so thankful for screw tops because I am even too exhausted to properly open up a bottle of wine?  Maybe you have even written that exact statement as a Facebook status? ;) (Yes, I have)

Or maybe you are in your 30s and a so called adult but you are still a little scared to open up a bottle of sparkling wine and take someone's eye out with the cork?  Needless to say, I am best buddies with this twist enclosure.

Party Hack 3- buy cranberries and throw them around on your table- instant, colorful confetti table decoration.  Freeze them and save them for next year's decorating too (although, maybe do not eat those ones...)

Party Hack 4-  Enjoy yourself this holiday season! Cheers to celebrating, relaxing and unwinding with friends!  Unwind with a glass of prosecco after a long day of shopping, party planning and enjoy the season!

 Happy Holidays my friends!  Stick around all month for simple decorating, gift ideas, DIYS & more!!  

Post sponsored by Riondo Prosecco, thank you for supporting brands that keep A Bubbly Life going!

DIY Metallic Dipped Ornaments

* Post sponsored by Paper Mart

I know so many people make candy and cookies over the holidays, but I make ornaments! And having an ornament craft party is one of my favorite ways to get together for the holidays and craft! These ornaments are so easy to make that your kids can do it too and I am always looking for fun craft ideas with the kids!

Paper Mart is a huge resource for everything paper, packing and awesome-ness.  As a DIYer, I am a frequent buyer and I am so happy to have the opportunity to share their supplies with all you.  They are extremely affordable and make so many DIY dreams come true!

Paper Mart had these gorgeous candy wrappers in a ton of metallic colors and I wanted to use them to brighten up a plain ornament!

Ornaments (I chose white, try any color or clear ornaments!)
Foil Candy Wrappers (The colors I used are Pink, Sage & True Gold)
Mod Podge

Brush mod podge (or any glue) onto the back of the candy wrapper.  I found it easier to add the mod podge to the candy wrapper than putting it on the ornament first.

Wrap candy wrapper around ornament, I used up to 1-2 for the look I wanted.

Add ribbon to the ornament and hang!

If you are having an ornament party, it is fun to include boxes to take the ornament home in and Paper Mart has so many wrapping choices!  I went with the Star Ribbon
Mirror Plates Ribbon (or as I like to call it- DISCO ribbon)
Gold Chenille Cord

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Gift Guide: The Hostess & Entertainer

Since Thanksgiving is around the corner, I thought today's gift guide should be for your favorite hostess and entertainer!  (and, if you are a friend of mine, that favorite hostess is me, so yeah, a gift guide for Laurel...)

Pink champagne glass flutes- Cheers to the New Year, Christmas, Thanksgiving or a Wednesday with some pink flutes!

Celebrate Everything! - A motto of mine & I would love this book (*Nick* *ahem*)

Marble & wood cake plate- I would keep this out year round.

Swell Marble Water Bottle- Ok, I know they are $$$ and you are like, what is the hype about?  I finally bought one (great deal at Nordstrom Rack) and I am now obsessed.  It keeps water cold for days. DAYS. Your hostess needs it when she is running around perfecting the table scape.  For her white wine that will stay cold ALL night.

Oh Joy! Serveware-   Don't own it, but love it.

Oh Joy! Barware set- I own this. Love it.

Marble Copper Ice Bucket- Hello, gorgeous.

Rose Gold Trash Can- Did I ever think I would link to a trash can!? But, this is beautiful.  Maybe a hostess wouldn't care about crumbs,  you spilling stuff everywhere and all the empty bottles if we could put all the garbage/recyclables in a beautiful container. P.S. stop being a slob ;)

I included more favorites in the widget below!  It was very hard to narrow down my favorites!

Last week's gift guide- For the Girls!

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Sparkling Apple Cider Mimosa Cocktail Recipe

We all know I love a good glass of bubbly ;)  And, Thanksgiving is a week away!! I am not cooking this year, taking the year off as it is my first without my Mom.  I absolutely love cooking and entertaining, but I did not handle some of the firsts without her well-  her birthday or my birthday... So, I thought the pressure to cook for a huge group would do me in rather than distract me.  But, I plan on eating and drinking and maybe even a mimosa in the morning?  I dont know, we are escaping to the beach this year and my plan is to soak up my girls & Nick and attempt to be happy because that is what my Mom would want.  Wow, that just got deep and personal for a mimosa post!  I struggle with remaining light hearted on the blog while grieving, so, occasionally I need to get the realness out there... But, hey mimosas.  Sparkling apple cider mimosas.  Sparkling wine is appropriate year round. 

Two ingredients-
Sparkling Apple Cider
Dry Sparkling Wine

I know I called this a recipe, but there really is no right proportion to a mimosa.  If I was cooking Thanksgiving dinner, Id only add a splash of champagne because I would need to be productive.  If I was not cooking... maybe a splash of cider instead ;)

The cider is very sweet, which is why you need a dry sparkling wine.  If you like your drinks sweeter you will want more cider.  Garnish with an apple slice.  Enjoy your mimosa, it is 2 ingredients, we can all make it happen!

Happy Thanksgiving! So grateful for all you readers!!

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