Thursday, June 14, 2012

Fresh from the Garden Party

This is the most distracting blog post I've ever written! 

Normally, I am the type of gal who has no problem chatting about cute little fondant cabbages, clever uses for radishes, and origami strawberries...EXCEPT on rare occasions when I have the theme song from the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air playing on an endless loop inside my head!

Let me explain.  My mom's 60th birthday was approaching.  She enjoys gardening and I'm a big fan of fresh produce.  A simple theme for a party was born:  "Fresh from the Garden".  Seems harmless enough, right?  However, I read the word "fresh" and my mind immediately leaps to, "Hey, remember that Fresh Prince of Bel-Air show that you and your sisters used to watch even though you guys didn't even have cable but Grandma recorded a bunch of them onto VHS so you were able to watch the same handful of episodes over and over again?"  Cue the theme song:  Now this is a story all about how my life got flipped  turned upside down...and any hope I had of focusing on relaying the party details is lost. 
So, doing my darndest to exclude any further mention of early nineties sitcoms, I bring you the collaborative efforts of my three sisters and myself to celebrate my mom's sixtieth birthday!  

We channeled the almighty carrot for the color scheme and let the produce store inspire the food and decorations.  

Fresh produce as centerpieces was a no-brainer.  Is it weird that I think rainbow chard is beautiful?

Ah, the technological wonder that is Pinterest!  How else would I have known that plastic utensils and napkins can be assembled to look like carrots

If there's any way to incorporate a pun - I'll find it!  (My mouth is watering just looking at those mini caprese skewers.  Everything tastes better with a little balsamic' shizzle.)

Remember when I mentioned creative uses for radishes?  This is what I was referring to.  Grab your favorite produce, chop off a portion to make a level base, and you've got a free-standing food marker. 

Displaying the cupcakes to resemble garden rows is not my original idea...just Google "garden cupcakes" and you'll see that it's been done before.  It's perfect, though, isn't it?

(The clever part is that I incorporated my Mom's name and date of birth via the seed packets.)

A couple handy fondant vegetable tutorials, in case you're interested: cabbages, pumpkins, peas.

There were other desserts, too:

Lastly, the party favors.  I painted the strawberry rocks and I think about four people total had a hand in making the paper strawberry "boxes" (with little chocolates inside inside).  My sister Jennie was complaining of a sore hand the day of the party from cutting out all those little green stems the night before.  They were so cute, though, and well worth any tendon damage they may have caused...right, Jennie? 

Freshest party ever, right?  And while we're on the subject of "fresh" - it's twenty years later and the lyrics are still fresh in my mind...  

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