Note: This post is sponsored by World Market, but all opinions are my own.
This is the 3rd year that I had the opportunity to team up with World Market and Share the Joy! (Here are the deets from the 1st year and the 2nd year!) This year I decided to do something a little different and hosted a benefit dinner for the Ronald McDonald House. Benefit dinner sounds so fancy, but we paired it with Andy’s birthday and asked people to forgo gifts for Andy and bring something off of the Ronald McDonald House wish list to donate. It was fun and casual, and I cooked an Italian feast with World Market goodies and we celebrated 33 years of Andy! (That’s right, I cooked!) And our donation pile is not too shabby, check it out!
I whipped up some super simple decor. And by super simple, I mean I erased part of my chalkboard calendar (still need to do a tutorial about this bad boy!) and added a birthday message, hung up my trusty old scrap fabric garland I made years ago, and bought some pretty sunflowers from Trader Joes! We got and hung our new light fixture just in time for the party too, woot woot!
World Market has tons of fun food and beverages from all over the world! Oh and candy and wine and coffee (3 of my faves)! I made lasagna, salad, garlic bread and whipped up a few fun Italian appetizers to go along with our Italian themed dinner.
Appetizers included peanut butter pretzels, blue cheese stuffed olives, and bruschetta Artichoke with toasted bread. Oh and the fanciest appetizer of all… my Italian roll ups! Yep, I invented that name. It’s sliced salami with cream cheese and pepperchinis rolled up with a cute little bamboo knot picks. Andy loved them.
Oh and I had a realization… being the photographer at your own event is really tricky. I have not one picture of my amazing lasagnas that I slaved over. What the what?! I was really proud of those bad boys. And my kale salad was very fancy too. Just picture cheesy, meaty perfection, ha! Here’s a little more cuteness… these wine glass charms are stinkin’ cute and very helpful! Oh and Sola is my fave red wine at World Market, trust me, I’ve tried a few!
Since the weather is was nice in Texas the night of his birthday, we ate dinner outside on our patio. Here’s a picture of the cuteness before. I’ve gotten a lot of good use out of the black and white table runners from my baby shower! Remember the cinder block bench? And the free patio furniture we gave a major makeover?
We had a little party crasher join us mid party for a few minutes. Maxwell said hello, had a little snack and went back to bed!
We even got a quick family pic!
Here’s Andy, his brother, and Wilma!
And you know I don’t host without a party favor paired with a cheesy saying… here’s what Andy (yes, Andy came up with this cheesy goodness) thought up for our Italian theme! World Market has a huge selection of Haribo gummies… I love them all (minus the licorice ones)! The yellow yarn is supposed to mimic spaghetti noodles, get it?!
I’d call the birthday benefit dinner a major success! Sharing the Joy of 33 years of Andy while giving back to an amazing organizing… We might make this a birthday tradition!