Rather than a more intimate rehearsal dinner, we invited all 90ish wedding guests. It was a great opportunity for the bride’s West Coast and our East Coast family to meet and get acquainted. It was also a reunion of old and dear friends, who we consider extended family.
I elected (with input from dear hubby and the couple) to put a more sophisticated spin on the food and decor for the I Do BBQ. What my British friend described as, “posh rustic” lol! So, I opted for decorations and centerpieces that incorporated romantic lighting elements, live edge wood slices, wine bottles and corks to compliment the barn and mountain woodlands setting.
In her remarks thanking us for the party, the bride noted that I am known as, the “queen of theme.” Adding, with a grin, that I bestowed her the title of my princess lol! Gosh it’s great having another girl in the family!
Hello friends, I’m back from my eldest son’s destination wedding in Highlands, NC! Although I’m still regrouping, I wanted to share a quick post on how I made champagne cork wedding party figures.
In lieu of a reception dinner for the immediate family and wedding attendants, hubby and I hosted all ninety guests at a welcome party. After all, they had all traveled for the three-day, Labor Day weekend event. Most of the bride’s family and bridesmaids flew from CA. And one of my son’s high school friends came all the way from South Korea!
The welcome party was held in Flat Mountain’s antique, Scandinavian-style black barn. It had been relocated all the way from Pennsylvania and renovated with a long back porch, restrooms, commercial kitchen, and stone fireplace.
To compliment the setting, I wanted a rustic but sophisticated style for the party decor. So I choose a theme that incorporated wine bottles, corks and wood slices into the centerpieces and other decorations. And, to personalize each place setting for members of the wedding party, I hand-painted and embellished a champagne cork.
Three years later than planned, we finally have updated our home’s curb appeal; replacing the front pad, sidewalk, and significantly rejuvenating the landscaping.
Like many things, the pandemic threw a wrench in our plans. During the summer of 2020, no one was vaccinated, and we were mostly staying home and social isolating. The following spring and fall, we tried to work with contractors and nurseries to even come and bid on the cement and landscape projects.
Last year, the service providers we had “hired” failed to show up — mostly due to a shortage of workers. It was extremely frustrating! We had saved for the home improvements for some time and were ready to go. It didn’t help that there was a cement shortage and costs had risen on everything.
Last January, we were able to secure and schedule a cement contractor to replace our 38-year old home’s original front pad. He also replaced the OmniStone walk — weed control had become a relentless chore. Happily, the crew showed in April, as planned. It was just days after we returned from nephew’s Charleston wedding, and Netherland’s vacation to see the Tulip Fields.
A few weeks later, I noticed a landscaper at my neighbor’s. I walked across the street and asked for an estimate. We hired him on the spot, and the work was completed in late June. We are delighted with the results, and have been watering ever since lol! Come take a look at our improved front curb appeal.
After having our front landscaping, walk and cement pad redone, the bee theme wreath hanging on the door was looking pretty faded and shabby.
It was the first deco mesh wreath I ever made, as decor for the bee theme My Favorite Things Party. Now nine years old, the years and weather had taken a toll on the once vibrant wreath. Without an overhang, the bright sun had faded the once black color. Meanwhile, rain had caused some rust staining from the wire in the ribbon.
Until this past week, I couldn’t carve out a few hours to tear apart and refurbish the bee theme wreath. Between the big outdoor projects, travel, out-of-town guests, our nephew’s wedding, and eldest son’s upcoming destination wedding, there hasn’t been much spare time — including for blogging!
I’ve been busy as a bee crafting decorations, invitations, and more for the big end-of-summer event set in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Highlands, NC. Come early fall, I’ll have a backlog of projects and party details to share.
As part of the Summer Tablescape Hop, I’ve set a bee theme tablescape outside on the covered porch.
Once again, Rita of Panoply has organized a group of 20 talented table and centerpiece stylists to share their latest summer settings.
My tablescape was inspired by a yellow and white floral arrangement I received for Mother’s Day. A thoughtful gift from my three “kids,” the pot and flowers were embellished with bees! A honey of an idea, as bees are kinda my “thing” lol!
Since we were enjoying gorgeous weather, I put the flowers to use as a bee-ut-i-ful centerpiece for the holiday dinner. It was our first alfresco meal of the season.
Drawing from my extensive collection of bee-decorated dishes, glasses, napkin rings and flatware, it also provided a new opportunity to style a bee theme tablescape.
Several weeks ago, hubby and I were enjoying the last day of our Netherlands vacation at Keukenhof Gardens to see Holland’s famous spring tulip display.
Keukenhof is the world’s largest flower garden, and is also known as the “Garden of Europe”. Its name translates in English to “kitchen garden,” dating to the 15th century when it was an herb farm owned by one of Holland’s wealthiest women.
One of the world’s largest open-air flower expeditions, Keukenhof’s greenhouse complex and 79-acre park draws huge crowds during the eight weeks it is open. It’s hothouses and lakeside flower beds are planted with seven million flower bulbs, making for an incredible display! And, that doesn’t include the tulip fields that surround Keukenhof Gardens and the larger Lisse countryside.
For Mr. Buzz and I, it was a bucket list trip experience that exceeded our already high expectations. Come with me as we stroll the gardens along the pathways, meandering streams, pools, and pavilions. No wooden shoes required!
In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, I’m sharing a summary of a decades-long journey in search of our family’s Irish ancestry. Tracing the family tree combines my interests and love of history and genealogy. The fruits of this research and effort were recently rewarded during an Ireland Vacation: 12 Day Itinerary.
Today, I’m taking you back to the Emerald Isle, where we visited this past August. First, were ten days traveling throughout Ireland, learning and experiencing it’s history, geography, and culture. It was a dream, pandemic-delayed trip that took us to the Irish emigration port of Cobh, Blarney Castle & Dingle Peninsula, and continued on to the stunning Cliffs of Moher & Arian Islands.
Utilizing my past research and DNA analysis, she opened new pathways and online resources to our family’s Irish ancestry. Most exciting was breaking through brick walls in my search, and making thrilling new discoveries! I hope my experience will inspire others to trace their Irish ancestry, and see how technological developments are opening new windows into the past.
In honor of romance and Valentine’s Day, I’m sharing the Love Boat theme engagement party we co-hosted with Sistah B and her husband at their home in Charleston.
Both my eldest son and nephew are getting married this year, and everyone couldn’t be more thrilled and happy!
Since we were already gathering for a week over Thanksgiving, it seemed the perfect opportunity to celebrate. Not only does our mother live in Charleston, but so do both my niece and spouse, and nephew and his sweet fiancé. Plus, eldest niece and her daughter traveled from Seattle for the holiday, and Sister A flew in from Florida.
Hubby and I rented a house with our sons and fiancé V, within walking distance to Sistah B’s waterfront home. She and her husband actually live on Folly Beach, the last barrier island across the water from Charleston. It was a wonderful setting for a joint Love Boat theme engagement party!
So now that you have a general idea of who, what and where, let’s raise anchor and set sail to party (warning, rocky seas with numerous corny puns ahead lol)!
Before driving to the stunning Cliffs of Moher, the day started with a ferry ride across the wide River Shannon. Afterward, we enjoyed tea and scones and a herding demonstration at an Irish sheep farm.
The next morning, a high speed ferry took us across Galway Bay to Inishmore, the largest of three remote Aran Islands. There, we explored Dun Aengus, a pre-historic fortress perched on sheer cliffs. Back in Galway, Mr. Buzz and I headed into the Latin Quarter for traditional Irish music and dinner.
Our final day with the group was spent at Clonmacnoise, a monastic settlement founded in 545 AD. Nearby in Athlone, we visited Europe’s oldest pub. Back in Dublin that night, was an entertaining Irish dinner show. Join me lads and lassies!
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Hi! I'm Debbee, a maker of all manner of things, who likes to incorporate themes into craft projects, holiday and seasonal decor, table settings, and parties. My friends call me, the Queen of Theme lol!
Home is the suburbs of Pittsburgh, but I also enjoy exploring the world with my husband. We raised two wonderful sons and are now early retirees.
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