The forecast for the whole ten days prior called for rain, rain and more rain. As luck would have it, the meteorologists were wrong again and it was an absolutely stunning day for an outdoor soiree.
I rented just a few round tables for extra seating and we set everything up outside, using the front yard, entire driveway and back yard spaces.
The main event was a make and griddle your own grilled cheese bar. Honey made the two chalkboards for the porch and John’s room a couple of years ago, and they were repurposed as menu boards.
A variety of breads were served up in tubs from the dollar tree. I also used dollar tree hot dog baskets and checkered paper liners in lieu of paper plates. They were great to load up with chips and sammies!
To keep the meats and cheese cool, I set the platters atop dishes of ice at the last minute. There were loads of cheeses, meats and toppings to choose from. After putting together their sandwiches, guests cooked them on Honey’s hibachi style gas grill. It was interactive, unique, easy and FUN!
These were the building blocks:
- pumpernickel / rye
- good old fashioned white
- cinnamon raisin (for dessert)
- sharp cheddar
- french blue
- marscapone (for dessert)
- cream cheese
- fresh mozzarella
- smoked salmon
- soppressata (and two other) italian sausage
- red onion
- caramelized onions
- red onion
- mustards (dijon, coarse grained, honey)
- Pepper Jelly
- Pear Honey Jam
- Nutella (dessert)
- bananas (dessert)
- strawberry preserves
Our friends had the best time concocting their eats! Here’s how it goes down:
1. Bring on the Bread
2. Choose your Cheese
3. Match with Meat
4. Take a Topping
5. Slip it on the Sizzler
The other table served as the drink station. Honey has developed a love for the Moscow Mule and this was a late add to the wish list. But I’m SO glad it was as it turned out wonderfully and people loved it!
I almost used mason jars for glasses but decided last minute that the red solo cup was way more Honey’s style and really went with the party theme. Oh, and the fact that they require zero clean up was not a small factor in the decision :-)
There were fixings for four different simple and yummy cocktails on the bar.
I had the Moscow Mule Mix (ginger beer+lime juice) in one jar and Simply Lemonade (my fave) in the other. Garnishes included lemons, limes, mint and basil.
The regular vodka was used for Moscow Mules and Lemon Drops, while the delish honeysuckle vodka was for the Mississippi Mule and Honeysuckle Lemonade. Both are from Cathead Vodka.
We had mini Cokes, Coke Zero, bubbly water, wine and coolers of beer as well.
When I was rooting around in the garage earlier in the week, I uncovered the stack of red buckets that used to be in John’s nursery. As luck would have it, not only did the match the party, but Honey and the boy share the same monogram!! I filled them with inexpensive pots of vinca that will now get planted in the yard.
Outside the eats and drinks, we had all of Honey’s favorite lawn games set up. Croquet, bocce ball, ladder ball, corn hole and beer pong. I’m not sure how that qualifies as a “lawn game”, but it was on the list so who am I to ask questions.
Speaking of beer pong, I was DYING over these shorts from Andy Cup. They are SO Honey!
I was a terrible photographer once the party started, which I totally regret the next day. Honey had some of his oldest friends there – from childhood, high school, college through today. I guess I was having too much fun myself!
The cake was made by my same friend that did the darling baseball cake. And it was ah-mazing! We filled the little mini solo cups with real beer… Honey was dying!
A couple of my besties braved hot wax and burns to help me place and light FORTY candles on the cake!
And when Honey had to stop for a breath a few times while blowing them all out…
… he did the shots of beer.
It was a truly incredible, fun and memorable night. And, with that, I think I can safely cross “#30: Celebrate Honey’s 40th in a big way” off of the 40×41 list!
Happy, happy birthday, Honey!!!!!