Cue the Jingle Bells… ahh just that sound gives me chills thinking of one of my favorite holiday shows, Oprah’s favorite things! That show has been gone for some time but I still tune into her website to see her infamous holiday favorites from year to year!!
This year I decide to get some of my close friends and family together for a girls night of Favorite Things! Let me tell you, it did not disappoint. We enjoyed relaxing and snacking on appetizers and treats. In true “ladies night” fashion we had tons of finger foods including meats and cheeses, meatballs and Brie bites!
These serving trays are from World Market last year, they don’t have these any more but here are a couple similar styles- ONE – TWO. (Ribbon was from Target last year, I just added to the tray on my own). Second, these faux flocked tress from target are a MUST BUY! I have loved having them on my island!!
I love baked Bries and these little bites are the BEST rendition! Super simple!
Crescent rolls (roll out dough and cut into 2×2 squares)
Brie cut into cubes
Jelly of your choice (I love Marion Blackberry)
Mini Muffin Tin
Now… all you do is assemble! Spray the pan with a non stick cooking spray, place in the crescent dough and push down the center to create a nest for the brie to sit. Then scoop a tiny bit of jam on top! Pre-heat the oven to 325 and bake until they are golden brown and cheese is bubbly! For me it was about 15-20 minutes. These will be VERY HOT when they come out!
BACON WRAPPED DATES
LOVE these apps! A little time consuming but you can prep these early and store in the fridge before you cook.
Pitted Dates (the larger the better)
Ground un-cooked Italian Sausage
Thin Sliced Bacon
Ingredients are simple, now on to the instructions! You will need to slice the side of the Date to be able to open it up enough to stuff a small pinch of Italian sausage inside. Then wrap with a small piece of bacon (around 3 inches long- so you will need to cut your bacon strips in half or thirds prior). Use a tooth pick to serve. When cooking, preheat over to 350 degrees and place on a cookie sheet (if you have a rack that fits in the cookie sheet this helps!) Cook for 30 minutes (until the bacon is crispy). Let cool then enjoy! Make more then you think you need, these will go FAST!
RICOTTA AND HONEY CROSTINI
This is one of my favorite simple apps! Here it goes… Slice and arrange a french baguette onto a cookie sheet. Drizzle olive oil and a little sea salt. Toast lightly (you still want these soft). Once they are cooled- spread Ricotta cheese on the baguette and top with crushed pink peppercorn. Right before serving drizzle with honey. The taste profile is very pleasing and refreshing.
So easy and very delicious. Bamboo toothpicks work well and look esthetically pleasing. Add cherry tomato first, a small fresh mozzarella ball and lay then on a platter. I thinly chopped a nice amount of fresh basil and sprinkled over the top then drizzled balsamic reduction. Easy and elegant!
MEAT AND CHEESE TRAY WITH MARINATED OLIVES
I really love the Merlot Cheese (You can get this at Whole Foods, Target and Costco, I typically dice these into bites and then drizzle with balsamic reduction). Meats I did a variety of sopressata, procuitto, capicollo and then a mild salami. I love to add in a VERY spicy mustard, a fig spread and then some marinated olives (I typically get the greek mixture with feta cheese— DELICIOUS). I serve this with some crackers and thin sliced baguettes.
Now let’s chat all things sweets! It can’t be a ladies night with out some sweet treats! First as a party favor, I made these mugs with all the ladies names on them. They were so easy! Here are the quick instructions:
- Clean the cup first, you want it read to use, plus you the want to side really clean before you write on it.
- Use your Sharpie and write the name! I went with a gold theme for my party so I did that as the name color and then added a POP of red to the cup with the ribbon and the heart.
- Let it dry! I did them the night before, however, I don’t think it takes much longer than 30 minutes to dry.
Handwriting tip: Practice on paper first, that way you know what you want. I LOVE this handwriting book, it helps me a ton figure out how I want the letters to look!
For the sweets we kept it simple: Brownie (I love giradelli brownies!), Pretzel Rods dipped in Giradelli chocolate, Chocolate dipped Raspberries (buy the way SO EASY and INCREDIBLE DELICIOUS!! I didn’t plan on making these but they were so good and went right away!) and Crème brûlée.
Now on to PRESENT TIME!! People brought some amazing gift options. There were cozy blankets, fuzzy hats and gloves, candles, lotions/soap! I will link some of my very favorite gifts below. Our rules for the party were as follows:
- Each guest brings 3 gifts around 20.00 each (each guest would spend around 60.00 total). Bring them wrapped and ready to gift!
- I planned ahead of time and added each guests name to a bowl three times. You bring three gifts and you get three gifts! YAY!
- When it was your time to hand out the gifts you would draw three names and hand the gifts out. As the gifts were opened the gift giver would talk about why they love the gift that they gave. Such a great way to get new gift ideas!
Some gift ideas that were around 20/each:
- Nordstroms Tomato Soup and William Sonoma Dish Towles
- Nordstrom Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Carmels with Girl Wash Your Face.
- Hand lettering Book with Letting Pens
- Le Labo Hand lotion
- MAC Makeup giftsets
- Home Body Book- Magnolia Homes
- Magnolia Candles
- Christmas Decor
- Lotion and Soap sets from Bath and Body
- Of course WINE!
We loved the party and plan to make it an annual thing! If you have the chance to do a favorite things party with your girlfriends, you will not regret it!
As a thank you to my readers, I will be giving away my favorite things this Christmas to a lucky reader! All you have to do it subscribe to my blog (email subscription), follow my Instagram/Facebook and like/comment on all of my posts between from December 1-20. Winner will be announced on December 21st!
Merry Christmas and Happy Shopping!