charity

Do me a favor, enough with the favors!

1:05 PM


It's no secret weddings are expensive. One place to save your pennies is favors...just don't do it! Really, do you think your guests need to take home a mini cheese grater with the tag "Grate Love" on it to remember your day? They don't. In fact, a mini cheese grater may seem like torture to most people. Sorry to be frank, but this is tough love. Couples can spend up to $1,000 on trinkets people throw away (or hide in a drawer and take out when you are coming over, however, if you want to see me with bleeding fingers as I grate a piece of cheese on the smallest cheese grater of all time then you are no friend of mine!). But if you feel compelled to send your guests home with something, here are a few ideas...

People love pictures of themselves. Rent a vintage photo booth and have guests take home strip photo. As the party goes on there will be interesting photos coming from that machine. This is simple, different but still manages to be classy and commemorate the day.

In my SATC2 blog post I mentioned Macaron Cafe in NYC. You can order yummy macarons pre-packaged or package them yourselves. Lets face it, everyone loves a yummy treat on your way out...especially if you had a few drinks and need to soak up that extra vodka.

Another great options is a candy station! Buy some oversized glassware and vases and fill with your favorite candy. Not a sweet person? Fill it with pretzels, popcorn or even bagels.

Maybe donate to a real charity ( I couldn't resist putting this up, I'm a dorky Seinfeld fan). Putting the money used for favors to a charity of your choice is gracious and meaningful, especially if it is a cause that is close to your heart.

Here is cheese grater mentioned above. I was not going to post the picture in protest of its ridiculousness but I thought you wouldn't believe me. Come on, really???? Who can grate cheese with that!

inflatables

Jump!

7:00 AM

Last Sunday at Belmont Race track we had inflatables all around (indoors because it rained) and the kids loved it!! They are a great thing to have at children's parties (or any party with children attending) because they tire the little ones out and keep them happy for hours. However, these bounces can be dangerous if not used properly. Always make sure your vendor has up to date insurance and sends an attendant. If you do not have an attendant someone needs to be in charge to make sure there are no more than 7 children in at once (depending on age). You also want to insure you have proper electricity to keep the inflatable...um, inflated! P.S. if you get one from us, all of this is taken care of! Happy bouncing!





memorial day

Welcome Summer - Memorial Day Party Ideas

1:07 PM

Summer is here, well almost. But technicality aside, get out your flip flops (maybe a pedicure first) and celebrate the beginning of summer with family and friends this memorial day weekend! (Photo courtesy of La Tartine Gourmand. Awesome blog with amazing recipes and photos) Here are few tips on how to throw i all together...
What to eat.
Leave the grilling to the men and whip up some yummy sides. Here are two cole slaw recipes that are tried and true. One supplied by the hubby and the other from my fabulous neighbor.

Asian Slaw

Ingredients

  • 1 head green cabbage, shredded
  • 1/2 head red cabbage, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon chile paste
  • 3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 carrots, shredded
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 4 scallions, julienned on the bias
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds, for garnish

Directions

Toss the cabbage together in a large colander and set in the sink. Sprinkle the cabbage with salt and let stand for 15 minutes. The salt draws out some of its moisture so that the slaw remains crunchy.

In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, soy sauce, oil, chile paste, peanut butter, and ginger. Toss together with the cabbage, carrots, bean sprouts and scallions; season with salt and pepper. Garnish with sesame seeds before serving.

Super Slaw
6 tablespoons rice vinegar
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
5 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons (packed) golden brown sugar
2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic

5 cups thinly sliced green cabbage
2 cups thinly sliced red cabbage
2 large red or yellow bell peppers, cut into matchstick-size strips
2 medium carrots, peeled, cut into matchstick-size strips
8 large green onions, cut into matchstick-size strips
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Whisk first 7 ingredients in small bowl to blend. (Dressing can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before continuing.)

Combine remaining ingredients in large bowl. Add dressing and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

What to drink.
Ice Tea anyone? The Long Island version has long been associated with quick inebriation but as grown ups maybe we can drink this version a bit slower.
1 part vodka
1 part rum
1 part gin
1 part triple sec
1 1/2 parts sweet and sour mix
1 splash Coca-Cola®
Mix ingredients together over ice in a glass. Pour into a shaker and give one brisk shake. Pour back into the glass and make sure there is a touch of fizz at the top. Garnish with lemon.
What to play.
I'm a big advocator of games. They break the ice and get the fun started quickly. I recently picked up my hubby's Men's Journal and it had an article "Throw a Righteous Bash." Here is what they told us to play and since I aim to be righteous, I'm gonna play it! V:King medieval block game... go figure.
What to listen to.
Nobody exudes the feeling of summer better than Jack Johnson. Maybe it has something to do with his Hawaiian- pro surfer background.


What to wear.
Casual, cool and hip; this outfit is perfect for a hot summer day into night party.


Non Profit Spotlight: New Beginnings

8:49 AM

Event Kings is honored to produce amazing fundraisers for non profit organizations all over Long Island, Manhattan and beyond. I thought it would be a good idea to spotlight the organizations along the way. I know this is a departure from fabulous event tips and tricks but don't worry, I'll be back with more wonderful ideas (I know its Memorial Day weekend coming up!!).

One organization that we produced walks, casino fundraisers, and galas for is New Beginnings of Long Island. This organization was created to offer support and rehabilitation for those suffering with traumatic brain injury (tbi). The founder Allyson Scerri was called to action after her father suffered a brain injury in a motorcycle accident. Seeing a man of strength and independance being inadaquately cared for motivcated Allyson to form an organization that would offer support to others in the same situation. They are currently developing a state of the art center to help those with TBI. Again, Event Kings is honored to work with such an amazing non-profit.

Tis the Season...for Peonies!!

8:31 AM


Its coming, Peony season!! June and July are prime season for these perfectly puffy blooms. Ever time I work with a flower I fall in love with it, but none steal my heart like Peonies. They are just breathtaking with their light and fluffy petals and the more they bloom, the more gorgeous they are! These flowers are perfect to stand alone in a simple vase. Three stems is all you need for a striking peace that will lift your heart. They also come in the most beautiful colors with pink and white being most popular. However, look out for the tropical coral and sexy reds. Below are some varietals that you may find at your flower market...(pictures courtesy of A. Perri Farms)

FESTIVA MAXIMA

PEONIE CORAL CHARM

In case you didn't believe me that these were my FAVORITE bloom, this is my wedding bouquet!! Simple, elegant and smelled heavenly.

Abu Dhabi

Dream Event - Sex and the City 2 Party!!

5:07 PM


Pay homage to one of the best chick flick series of all time and throw a glamourous, fabulous, liquor filled party. Host this pre-movie screening party and call a cab to the theater for Sex and the City 2. Oh how I missed those ladies!

Here are a few things to get you going. I went with the Abu Dhabi theme and used the above picture for inspiration. Sure, many of you may not invest in lanterns, rugs and silver platters for a party (not just any party, show some respect!) but you can still buy figs, macarons, champagne and throw your Manolo Blahniks on (in my case faux Manolos).


First start off with a natural jute rug - bringing in sand is optional.



Then ad some fun pillows - I tried to go with the beige look in the picture but couldn't resist a jeweled- bedazzeled one. These are from Pier 1 but if you need a good excuse to head to Home Goods and find a few new pillows go for it. Don't blame me if you come home with a plastic Buddha statue for $9.00 (true story).


Some cool lanterns will add to that Arabian Nights feel. These are from World Market.

Some gold rimmed glasses to hold all the champagne you will be enjoying.
Buy some yummy figs. If you can't find them fresh use the dried.

And if you look in the picture near Charlotte you will see these beautiful, colorful macarons. Luckily you don't have to go to Abu Dhabi for these heavenly morsels, you can go to Macaron Cafe on 36th street in the city. Coming in all sorts of flavors like nutella, praline and raspberry, these are reason enough to host a party. Oh yeah, and if you can't pick them up in your Jimmy Choos you can order them online.


To serve all your goodies get these awesome serving trays from World Buyers. It is an awesome website with truly unique stuff. Same goes for the Buddha statue here.

I wouldn't even attempt to think that I have the fashion capability of the genius Patricia Fields. Really, she is the reason I watched the show - just to see what Carrie and crew would wear. From the previews it looks like this movie will provide amazing fashion eye candy. However, I couldn't have a dream Sex and the City 2 party and not create a dream outfit!


Let me know if you throw a party for the movie and send some pictures!


Easy Entertaining Recipe - Puff Pastry Twists

4:14 PM


My husband recently tried out a few recipes for fun appetizers to serve at summer parties (yes he cooks AND does dishes, don't be jealous...ok, just a little). It opened the door to the wonderful world of puff pastry! This frozen delight is so easy and SO versitle to make awesome yum-yums both savory and sweet.


Here is a recipe for Olive Tapenade Twists developed by the hubby, eaten by me!

1 cup kalamata olives - pitted
2 clove minced garlic
2 tablespoon capers
juice 1/2 lemon
1/4 parmean cheese
pinch anchovy paste
pinch red pepper flakes
1/4 to 1/2 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
1 box frozen puff pastry

1. Put first 9 ingrediants in food processor adding enough olive oil to make it smooth.

2. Unfold pastry sheet onto a lightly floured surface, and press out fold lines. Roll into a 12- x 10-inch rectangle.

3. Spread olive mixture over lengthwise half of rectangle to within 1 inch of long ledge; fold pastry over filling. Roll gently with a rolling pin; pinch edges to seal. Cut crosswise into (½-inch) strips. Twist strips; place on a greased baking sheet.

4. Bake at 400° for 8-10minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool. Makes about 3 dozen.



Here is a sweet recipe that sounds super yummy. Courtsey of My Recipes

Ingredients
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon water
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 (17.3-ounce) package frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed
1/2 cup finely chopped roasted pistachios
2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted

Preparation
Whisk together egg yolks and water in a small bowl.
Combine sugar, cinnamon, and cardamom.
Carefully roll each sheet of puff pastry into a 9 1/2" square on a lightly floured work surface. Brush each sheet with egg wash, and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons sugar mixture. Sprinkle chopped pistachios evenly over 1 sheet, leaving a 1/4" border; top with remaining sheet, sugared side down. Firmly press edges to seal. Brush top of pastry with melted butter; sprinkle with remaining sugar mixture. Cut pastry into 3/4"-thick strips, using a pizza cutter. Twist each strip 3 times, and place 2" apart on lightly greased baking sheets.
Bake at 400° for 19 minutes or until golden. Remove from pans immediately, and cool on wire racks.
Note: To reheat pastry twists, bake at 450° for 5 minutes or just until heated. Cool. (As they cool, they crisp up.)




Event Recap - Belmont's Family Fun Day

12:15 PM

Last weekend's Family Funday at Belmont racetrack was another success. Beautiful weather and beautiful people who enjoyed face painting, BMX slide, petting zoo and more! This Sunday is our pirate theme. Wear your eye patches!!



blue flowers

A Timeless Centerpiece

7:56 AM


Last night we provided the centerpieces for the Bulova watch company's sales meeting dinner. The client wanted to showcase their new ad campaign that portrayed the etherial movement of the new watch. The ads were printed and secured around the vases...a great way to tie in anything to your centerpiece.
I was so inspired by one ad with a woman dancing and flowing white and purple light was all around her. When I saw these irises in the floral market I gasped - they just looked like they were dancing too. The piece was simple but elegant and I think they really captured the movement in the ad campaign and will attribute to record sales...ok maybe not, but they looked pretty!!