Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Goodbye Cali, Hello Texas

One of my good friends and monthly dinner girls was moving to Texas this month with her family. We are so sad to see them go!  To send her off with well wishes, I decided to theme our dinner around her move to Texas.  We'll miss her, but we're crossing our fingers her work will be having her travel back to Cali often (preferably the first Monday of each month so she can attend our monthly dinners)!

Invite:  I designed the invite with reds and blues and a little southern flair.  The party colors were going to match the Texas flag, so that's why I chose these.

Entry Decor:  As a parting gift for Michelle, I made this welcome mat for her new house.  I looked up some tutorials for how to do it, and it didn't seem too difficult, so I gave it a try.  I started with the outline around the sides using blue painter's tape to tape off the area.  Then I used black house paint that I already had from our Ho Ho Home Depot monthly dinner and a paint brush to put the paint on.  The tape did not stick well to this uneven surface, so I was nervous it would bleed, but it didn't!! Just go slowly and carefully.  I did 3 coats.

For the letters, I used my Cricut to make stencils and measured carefully where to place them on the mat so that it was spaced properly.  This took the most time. Then I used the brush to paint on again.

I love how this turned out. I can't wait to make a mat for our front door someday in all my free time!

Table Decor:  I used a red tablecloth and cut out the state of Texas from a map I got from AAA.  Everything else I used on the centerpiece I borrowed. 

My mom had the red, white, and blue flowers.  My neighbors used to live in Texas, so I asked them if they had anything I could borrow.  They had the license plates (perfect) and the coasters!  Another friend of mine had a "Don't Mess with Texas" deck of cards, so I set some of those out on the table. 

For place cards, I used my Cricut to cut out the state of Texas large enough to fit inside my dinner plates. I added each of the guest's name and a heart for the area in Texas where our friend is moving.

Check out my napkins! They are just plain blue napkins that I set a piece of red and a piece of white cardstock on for the stripes.  The star is a party favor I helped my mom make for her last UMW meeting.  It is just two 2" white stars I cut out with my Cricut, a 1"x 4" strip of white cardstock folded into a triangle, and then I glued the stars to the front and back of the triangle.  I stuck a Hershey kiss inside the triangle for added fun.  Then set it on the napkin.

With the leftover map sections from the AAA map, I made a Texas Bound banner. Nothing fancy -- it even has the folds of the map still in it, but it worked.

Instead of wine glasses, I used mason jars to fit with the theme.  I cut out small California and Texas state silhouettes in red, white, and blue for wine charms. I tied them around the glasses with twine and added a gingham ribbon bow.

The wine bottle labels I made to match the theme as well. Nothing too elaborate, but I like the Texas-shaped wine glass and the Texas flag wine bottle.

Menu: The menus was some finger-lickin' Texas BBQ.  My husband grilled chicken and we lathered it with BBQ sauce.  He also grilled some ribs after I added a rub to them.  I used a delicious Texas-Style Dry Rib Rub.  Mixed it together and rubbed it on the ribs right before placing them on the grill.
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
For sides, I served grilled corn on the cob and twice-baked potatoes.  The cornbread muffins were just a box mix, but they were really good as well.

Slices of watermelon added a sweetness to the meal.

For dessert, I wanted to stay simple and light, but still match the theme.  I bought frozen pie crust and cut it into stars before sprinkling it with cinnamon and sugar and popping it in the oven to bake and crisp up.  I then topped it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, a strawberry, and a couple blueberries.  Simple and delicious.

Favor:  My mom always makes a homemade Chex Mix when our family travels anywhere.  I have started to do the same for my family's road trips.  For the favor, I filled mason jars with this Chex Mix, but I renamed it TEX mix.  A gingham bow and label on top, and the favor was done.

I hope you enjoyed this post!  Please comment, so can hear your favorite touches from this party!

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