I kept with the theme and cut and hand lettered a banner to hand across our dining room.
I simply cut the map into several equal triangle, wrote a letter on each and left 1 plain and punched 2 holes into the top of each. I then threaded jute through the hole and hung. I hung another full map above the dessert table and filled a huge blue glass vase with fresh sunflowers.
We placed small velum paper flags with "Bon Voyage" written in white ink and glued onto a wooden skewer. I used an assortment of tiny dishes and paper cups to be lively and fun as well as make sure I had enough small plates for everyone!
I also picked up some adorable "Airmail" style note cards and tied them in pairs of 2 with jute. (The idea WAS that each card would each have the girls new addresses on them and be ready mail, but hey...who knows their new addresses? Not my girls. So guests were able to take a packet home and I agreed to forward said addresses asap.)
Since this was mainly an outdoor party, I used my potting bench for outside drinks in buckets and set up a classic cocktail bar inside the dining room. A copper preserving pot and galvanized tub surrounded by wicker did the trick for the assorted craft beers and sodas and I included fun blue swirled straws!
We also had a cocktail bar set up for 2 drinks. The "Saint Augustine" and "Shanghai Tea". I found some super cute 6X8 inch chalkboards and wrote a recipe on each. I then included an ice bucket, lemon wedges, and assorted components for each drink. LOTS of fun!! Everyone got into the spirit and tried something new! I save several types of jars and wine bottles I like so I had fun putting the components into different bottles instead of just the same old thing! We didn't get straight on photos, but here I am making a (well deserved I might add) Saint Augustine!
We had 28 guests, all family to wish the girls well. It's a bit of a challenge finding room for that many to sit together, so we set up 3 8 foot buffet tables in the yard. I covered the tables in 2 pale yellow curtain panels and 1 pale blue, flat, bed sheet instead of purchasing anything.
I used paper plates in a square style and wrapped the silverware in napkins and a piece of jute. We found some lovely bottles of Italian Barbera (Fuso is the brand) wine that paired well with our food and décor with a map label.
I tucked a few sprigs of statice flowers into Fentiman's Tonic Water bottles to brighten up the table and placed large world maps to cap off each end. The food was the main attraction however!
Baguette slices with pesto, tomatoes and feta
Fresh Radish Spread
Lemon Herbed Chicken
Seasoned Pork Tenderloin with Horseradish Sauce (on the side)
Wild Rice with Grilled Vegetables
Redskin Potatoes with fresh herbs and butter
Baguettes & butter
Sliced Sweet & Sour Cucumbers
Kale Salad with Peaches and Parmigiano Reggiano
Traditional Caprese Salad
Peach & Blueberry Cobbler
Pots de crème; Chocolate or Vanilla Bean
Victoria Sponge Cakes with Jumbleberry Jam
Old Fashioned "Dirt" Cakes
I am happy to post the recipes late this week, or feel free to message me for something in particular! Michigan is so full of fresh fruits and vegetables that this menu was easy to prepare and delightful to eat even for a large group! Most of the recipes were prepared in advance to keep me sane :) We did all of the grilling while guests arrived and had pleny of time to visit and have a drink before the meal.
And to finish up the great party, we did family photos. It will be the last time we are all together for at least 11 months.....so we seized the day. And the little dogs.