We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

Holiday Dinner Party

Saturday night, Peter and I hosted an Annual Christmas White Elephant Party at our house.  This tradition began about 5 years ago, but we have always done it out, at a restaurant.  After loving our experience for Peter’s birthday with No Thyme to Cook, we had them again for this get together.

This group of friends are pretty special to Peter and I.  When I first moved back, I had lots of girlfriends from growing up here, but I joined the MOMS group so I could have daytime activities for Matti Jane and I.  These are the same gals and their husbands.  The bond between adults and babies (now 7 and 8 year olds (insert crying emoji)) has remained so strong and I TREASURE it!!

We ran with a White Christmas theme.  Knowing we were hosting this party and Colleen’s wedding last weekend, it put us in full gear to decorate for Christmas, which I am so grateful for as we’ve been able to enjoy it for 2 full weeks already!!  I just added a couple touches to the table and the bar for the evening.

We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

I am in super love with this centerpiece.  The wooden box is from a workshop I attended at Scarborough Farms last Thanksgiving (2016).  And, I saw a gorgeous red poinsettia flower arrangement is the current Southern Living magazine…so that was my inspiration 🙂  Everything is real including the greens from our yard and the pomegranates.

We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

I cut pieces from our Christmas tree and used them on the napkins for a festive feel.

Dinner was prepared by No Thyme to Cook and the menu included –

  • Mixed Greens with Pickled Beets, Manchego & Toasted Walnuts with an Apple Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • Peppercorn Crusted Steaks with Horseradish Cream Sauce
  • Individual Potato Gratins & Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Toasted Almonds & Brown Butter
  • Dessert – Molten Chocolate Cakes

We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

Yes, dinner was delicious AS USUAL, but it was truly about the company…our friends are AWESOME!!

We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

Anyone spot Eddie our Elf?!?!

We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

A huge thank you to Amanda and Lucas for the most amazing and delectable charcuterie plates EVER!!

Now on to the White Elephant Gift Exchange.  So, this is both terribly fun and can be completely inappropriate.  We love it because it’s both.  The best part, the guys participate as well and as you can imagine, their gifts usually sway towards booze or inappropriate 😉 But, it truly makes it that much more fun with them joining in!!

We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

Lucky me got the Mrs. Claus costume 😉  I think I was putting it on display here for the next person to steal from me…hahaha.  But, that is what makes it FUN.

Maybe my favorite part of the night was giving out favors.

We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

I gave the girls monogrammed pearl earrings and the guys received Whistle Pig minis.  It was SO FUN…and yes, I ordered myself a pair of earrings too 😉

It was such a GREAT night, all because of GREAT friends!!  The only pitfall was knowing that not “everyone” was there.  Our close friends Mike and Nicole got stuck in Atlanta because of the darn snow.  They were SO missed!!!

We hosted a small, intimate Christmas dinner with friends. Christmas decorations, personal chef and lots of FUN were the center of everyone's night.

And, thank you to Sara for capturing all of these great pictures!!  I did a terrible job of taking pictures that evening :-/

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

Stocking Stuffers for Us Gals

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

I call these gift ideas “stocking stuffers” but I think they fit into so many categories.  I think they certainly are perfect if they fit in the stocking, but if not, I think they are perfect “smaller” gifts from the kids to Mommy.  They are really just extra gifts to help the hubbies 😉  I think they are also great options for sisters, aunts, coworkers or hostesses.

I kept all the gifts below $50 and I am loving the variety.

 

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

Baublebar Acrylic Monogram Curb Bracelet – $24.70 with code CYBER35

I love everything tortoise shell but this bracelet is just screaming my name more than usual.  The combination of the chain bracelet and the tortoise monogram is perfection!!

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

Lilly Pulitzer To Do Planner – $25

I have the Lilly Pulitzer planner from last year and absolutely love it.  It gives me everything to keep me organized and I am certainly wanting another for 2018!!

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

Fresh Super Lip Advanced Therapy – $26

YOU GUYS, if you don’t know about this little secret, Fresh Lips, let me just tell you!!  This is truly satin on your lips!!!  I also have it in a tinted shade for a bit of color…try this…you will thank me!!!

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

Laura Mercier Flawless Contouring Palette – ON SALE for $30

For all the makeup addicts out there, this sounds amazing!!  I believe anything Laura Mercier is so good so I cannot wait to try this palette out!!

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

Lilly Pulitzer Lo-Ball Glasses (Set of 4) – $32

I have both acrylic wine glasses from Lilly Pulitzer and plastic cups.  Both are so perfect for the Summer.  Grab these lo-ball glasses for yourself now for Summers to come, or give as a gift with your bestie’s favorite alcohol 🙂

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

Navy and Pearl Petite Lantern Earrings – $48

How classy and timeless are these earrings??  AND, they are generation-less.  I just adore the navy and the pearl together, so feminine!!

Great stocking stuffers for the ladies including makeup, jewelry and coffee table books. Something for everyone.

Dinner Diaries Coffee Table Book – $50

I think coffee table books are the BEST gift to give but also to receive.  I usually choose based on my favorite brands or my favorite colors.  So, this one is a definite must for me!!

 

I have compiled a list of my favorite stores and their coupon codes to SAVE - sweaters, dresses, coats, drinkware, hostess gifts and so much more!!

Black Friday Sales

It is officially Black Friday!! The sales are AWESOME!!  I have rounded up A LOT of the best Black Friday sales.

I have compiled a list of my favorite stores and their coupon codes to SAVE - sweaters, dresses, coats, drinkware, hostess gifts and so much more!!

ASOS – 30% off EVERYTHING with code EPIC30

Loving this sweater and this dress would be perfect for ANY holiday party!!

Ann Taylor – 50% off EVERYTHING with code THANKFUL

There is SO MUCH goodness here, but I am loving this top…the cap sleeves and that collar make this such a classy top.  I adore this leopard neck wrap…it is the perfect pop of FUN with any black sweater or black coat.

Baublebar – 35% off EVERYTHING with code VIP35

I love these for the holidays how fun is this Acrylic necklace?!?!  So perfect for your high school, college or early 20’s daughter!!

J.Crew – 40% off EVERYTHING with code THANKU

Dying over this skirt and these shoes and this top.

J.Crew Factory – 50% off EVERYTHING

I am loving this shirt and this festive one for your favorite guy!!  And how perfect is this dress for Christmas for your little mini me?!?

Kate Spade – 30% off EVERYTHING with code GIVEJOY

This skirt is so darn FESTIVE!!  And how classy is this navy handbag?!?

Loft – 50% off EVERYTHING with code FRIYAY

Loving the Americana vibe in this dress.  I also feel like it’s season-less.  And loving this tiered sleeve white top…it will go so chic-ly with jeans or slacks for work.

Madewell – 25% off EVERYTHING with code DONTSTRESS

Absolutely DYING over these glitter Tretorns (remember this brand?!?!)  I am thinking they will be perfectly appropriate for our upcoming Disney trip!!

Mark and Graham – 20% off EVERYTHING with code FRIENDS

How perfect is this for the sophisticated host or hostess?!?!  And I ADORE these Santa Sacks to be used YEARS to come!!

Nordstrom – Crazy great sales just added for today!!  An additional 20% off already on sale items!!

Loving the contrast in this coat – the black and gold and camel faux fur collar!!  Grab my favorite thermal this is on additional sale.  And, I am still obsessed with the statement making collar on this wool coat!!

Potterybarn – Crazy great sales…up to 50% off and FREE SHIPPING with code BLACK FRIDAY

I am going to grab a couple classic silver frames at 30% off!!  I am also thinking about upgrading my drinkware…anyone else do that close to the 10 year mark of their marriage?!?!?

Tuckernuck – 20% off EVERYTHING with code GONUTS

How FUN is this belt for your hubby for the holidays?!?!?  And still loving this reversible poncho…2 in 1!!