Monday, January 15, 2018

PUN Party = Fun Party

Who doesn't love a good pun?  Puns -- play on words - make small jokes exploiting the various definitions of words we have in the English language.  As an English teacher, I love a good pun...gets me giggling every time!  So January's monthly dinner theme was all about puns, and I had so much fun coming up with puns for the decor, the food, the place cards, the favors, and anything else I could think of for this party.

Invite:  I wanted to incorporate as many puns into my invitation as possible. I think I got 4 in this one.  I chose the blue shades and burgundy as a color scheme because these were colors used in the toasting plates image and the "Pun Party" banner images I found online, but any color scheme would work perfectly for this party.

Entry Decor:  The night of the party it was raining, so I had to bring most of my outside decor inside. If you follow my blog, you know that our last party was a HO HO HOme Depot party where guests made a wooden Santa or a Snowman.  This is the snowman I made at that dinner party.  I just added a pun to it.

On the door, I used my Cricut to cut letters to spell Dumble (as in Dumbledoor from the Harry Potter series).  I put the his symbol from the novel as well.

This sign would have been outside as well.  To "whale"-come or welcome guests to the party.

Table Decor:  I had a lot of fun with the puns for the table.  I started with a centerpiece of four different puns.  I created speech bubbles with the puns to attach to each item so guests could understand the pun.

My favorite was the loaves of french bread that I cut to look like slippers/loafers.  These were super easy to create.  Just cut off half for the back of each loafer, and then scrape away the inside where the toes would go and a bit of the entire bottom. It's true...I love "loaf-ering" around with these ladies.

Also in the centerpiece was a bouquet of "carnation" flowers. I bought Carnation instant breakfast packets and some fake flowers.  I took off the flowers and replaced them with Carnation packets.  A pun with the French thank you - merci beaucoup became Merci Bouquet.

I also bought a small watermelon and a bottle of Heinz ketchup.  The watermelon for the pun "You're one in a melon (million)" and the ketchup for "Great to Ketchup (catch-up) with you."

On each plate, I made a small insert that I printed and placed in the center.  It encouraged guests to "eat your heart out."

For placecards, I wanted to come up with a pun with each guest's name.  This is a huge challenge.  I only had 6 ladies able to attend this party, so it was easier than trying to do it for a huge crowd.  Here's some of the ones I came up with for my friend's names:

When thinking of puns to go with guest names, you may need to try both first and last names.  I even had to do one friend's nickname because I couldn't think of any good puns for her first or last name.

For napkin rings, I used ring pops and carrots to create "one carrot (diamond) rings."  My kiddos enjoyed eating the ring pop suckers.  Then I washed the rings, carved a hole in a carrot with a screwdriver, and then put the carrot onto the ring.  You could add a diamond cut out of card stock under the carrot which might make the pun even easier to understand.

I made this small sign on PhotoShop to put on the drink table.  Parties are great chances to "wine (wind) down and (gopher) a drink".  I had a little clock next to the sign, but it kept disappearing...gotta love my kiddos!

I designed these wine labels for the three wines I served.  The red wine one "well red (read)" has open books designed behind it.  The chardonnay one is lyrics from a popular song right now.  "Now watch me Sip on Chardon-NAY NAY" instead of "Now watch me Whip; now watch me NAE NAE" song.

For wine charms, I made FACEcards.  A facecard is the Jack, Queen, and King in a deck of cards.  To make the pun, I just used Photoshop to put a photo of each guest's face in place of the queen's on each card.

Menu:  There are so many puns that go with food, so coming up with my menu was pretty easy.  I made menu tags to match the invites and other party decor.  For food, we started with a simple salad - romaine lettuce, cucumber, corn, bacon, and shredded cheese.  I used a "salad (solid) gold" pun as well as a "lettuce romaine (let us remain) friends forever" pun.

I made Cool Ranch Chicken for the main dish.  This is super easy to make and yummy (even my kids like it).  Alongside the chicken, I had a bottle of Ranch dressing that I added sunglasses to make it "cool".

For sides, I served green beans and cilantro lime rice.  "Thanks for bean-ing (being) great friends" and "Lime (I'm) glad we're friends."

For dessert I made a fruit tart with strawberries, kiwis, and blueberries.  It's Nilla wafers and butter for the crust, vanilla pudding and whipped cream for the middle, and fruit for the top.

Favor: Each guest took home a cheese grater I found at Dollar Tree.  I used a cookie cutter to cut a slice of cheese into a heart to attach to each grater.  I attached a tag to the front that read "I know it's CHEESY, but I am GRATE-ful for you!"  The girls loved them.

All in all, we had a PUN (fun) night.  Most of the guests came dressed up as a pun.  Pictured here from left to right:  Hawaiian punch, baking soda, chip on your shoulder, Freudian Slip, and Sugar Mama (she's got a bag of sugar wrapped in that baby blanket).

Hope you enjoyed this post!  Would love to hear your comments!

Friday, December 22, 2017

HO HO HOme Depot Party - Part II

If you've read Part I of the HO HO Home Depot party with all menu and all the decor details of this party, I am sure you anxious to see how the actual craft project was made! It was just too long to fit in one post, so here it is...

Party Activity:  If you are having a Home Depot party, you have to have a fun project for guests.  I wanted to pick something that would be easy to make in one evening and still allow us to have time to chat/have dinner. This project was perfect!  The employees at my local Home Depot were amazing at helping me get what I needed.  To make this project, you will need:
  • Two pieces of 1'x4' wood
  • 1 1/4" Screws
  • Wood glue
  • Paint - Jim, from Home Depot recommended Satin finish
  • Paintbrushes
  • Table saw/Drill

Step 1: Saw the wood.  You can make this project whatever size you want, but I gave each guest 2 pieces of wood with instructions to cut five 36" pieces, one 30" piece for the brim, and one *** piece for the bracing on the back.

Step 2:  Assemble the project with wood glue.  You could skip this step, but I think it helps hold the pieces in place before drilling.  If your wood has writing on it (which most will), have your guests make sure the writing is on the back side of the project so you don't have to worry about it showing. We glued the bracing piece to the bottom/back of the project as shown here.

Step 3:  Drill the bracing piece into the back making sure the screws don't go all the way through to the front of the project.  Drill the hat brim on as well.  I instructed guests to do both of these from the back so the screws wouldn't show on the front.

Step 4:  Paint your project!  Most of the girls did one thick coat of paint, but you could do a second if you have time in your party.  The guests painted the base, and then we had dinner while that dried.  Then we came out to paint the face.

If you have kids at your party, give them popsicle sticks and have them create the same project minus the sawing and drilling!  My oldest daughter loves to craft and always wants to be a part of my dinners somehow, so this was perfect.

The girls and I had a ton of fun making these, and I think they will be a fun holiday decoration for years to come!

Thank you again to the employees at Home Depot for helping to make this craft night possible!

HO HO HOme Depot Party - Part I

HO  HO's Christmas time! I love the holiday season, and I can't seem to have enough holiday decor around my house, so for this month's dinner party, it was Christmas craft time!  That's right, we had fun with a HO HO HOme Depot themed monthly dinner!  Special thanks to the employees at the Anaheim Home Depot who were awesome in helping me figure out the best supplies to build our craft.

Invite:  I love the Home Depot gift card that has the Santa working at the tool bench, so I wanted to incorporate that into my design.  I made the invite on PhotoShop with this image at the top, and the basic party information below.  I sent it out to my girls electronically, but if the guests you are inviting live nearby, I think it would be cute to hand deliver the invite nailed to a small piece of wood.  Just added fun.

Entry Decor:  I made a wreath for my front door out of a 100-foot extension cord, and then tied a bow with yellow CAUTION tape.

I also set out an example of the craft project we were all going to make for the party.  I chose to paint a Santa, but the girls had the option of painting a Snowman, the Grinch, or a Santa.

Inside Decor:  I went with holiday colors for the decor with a little Home Depot orange thrown in here and there.  I set out tools from my garage mixed with various Christmas decorations, and that was it.

For the centerpiece, I set out my husband's red toolbox and some random tools.  I bought a Home Depot apron (only 99 cents), and the "H" and "O" letters (Michaels), to spell out the HO HO HOme Depot theme.

I also made these cute Christmas lights on a string using paint swatches from Home Depot.  I got two lights out of each swatch, added shiny silver cardstock to the top, and taped the light to a piece of ribbon.

For place cards, I used these super cute aprons that are Home Depot gift card holders!  I took out the gift card from the pocket on the front (because it hid part of the logo).  I cut the letters of each guest's name out of cardstock using my Cricut and glued them on the line.  You can write them on with Sharpie, but I wanted guests to be able to reuse the apron if they wanted to give a gift card to someone for Christmas.  One of my guest's ended up putting this on her Christmas tree as an ornament!  I love it!

I designed a couple of wine labels to match the holiday spirit -- "HO HO HO Pour the MERLOT" on the chest of Santa and "I'm Dreaming of a White WINE Christmas."

For wine charms, I got some screws and nuts from my husband's toolbox.  I dipped one side of each of them in paint and kept the other side metal.  I used holiday colors to match the theme, and then tied them onto the glass stem with white ribbon.

Menu:  At first I had a hard time deciding what to serve because I wasn't sure if we would actually have time to sit and eat or if we'd be working on our projects the entire time.  I started off with a Roasted Pepper Tomato Soup with a bread-stick that I served in a mug.  I served this in a mug not only because it is "wintery", but also so guests could drink this while they were working on the project and not have to worry about having a spoon.  Both the soup and the bread-sticks were straight from the box, I didn't make them from scratch.  They were delicious, and all I had to do was heat them up!

After assembling, drilling, and painting the base of the craft project, we came inside for dinner while the paint dried.  I served chicken kabobs that I added the head and base of a hammer to make them fit with the theme.  I just printed them on cardstock, cut them out, and taped them to the stick right before serving.

I served the rice in a paint tray from Home Depot.

For dessert, I served vanilla ice cream with showmen made out of Kit Kat bars.  Perfect because they totally match the wood craft project we were making as the Kit Kats look like pallets. I used candy melts as "glue" for these.  The black round candy I bought at a local cake shop, but the rest I just got at the grocery store.  The nose is a gumdrop that I cut.

Party Favor:  Even though guests were already leaving with the craft project as a party favor, I made this small one as well.  I cut pieces of wood and painted them red.  Then I used my Cricut to cut a vellum HO HO HO.  I added a ribbon and some mini ornaments (from the dollar store) with hot glue.

Can't wait to show you the woodworking craft project details.  Check out the HO HO Home Depot party - Part II post to see how we made these adorable holiday decorations!