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time to party!

Before I share more party details, I want to wish my dear friend, Karen Mock a very Happy Birthday!

Karen was a bridesmaid at my wedding. I think everyone should have a bridesmaid like her. She carried out her duties like a pro! I mean, it is not easy being a bridesmaid at your friends’ wedding – you have so much to do! From managing the bride’s emotions as she approaches her big day, to organizing her hen party (you could click here to find some ideas for yourself), it’s just a big roller coaster ride. Hats off to Karen for pulling it off!

At the time of my wedding, she was pregnant with her first child, Nick. Dave and I are Nick’s godparents … so yes, Karen and I have been friends for a long time and I love her to pieces. Happy Birthday, Karen! I look forward to celebrating with you on Friday! xoxo

On to the party ….


Peggy arrived a little early so she’d be there to greet her guests, and I was actually ready to greet her and the guests too. That doesn’t always happen. More often than not, I’m still scrambling and getting ready at the very last second before a party at our house begins. But not this time, and here is why –

I had gone to Sweet Salvage the day before the party with my friend and colleague, Kim Howard. (after all the party posts, I’ll share with you what I got that day – it is so cool!)

I was telling Kim about the party plans and she said, “Let me come help.” I resisted at first because I’d already hired two servers and a bartender from Elite Events AZ. Kim insisted and I finally came to my senses and took her up on her generous offer. Kim and I work together at Les Gourmettes. When I teach my series of classes there, Kim works right beside me. We’re a great team and I knew that having her in the kitchen, finishing off the dishes, overseeing everything, and doing things exactly as I would do them – well I knew that I wouldn’t have to worry about a thing and I could really relax and enjoy my own party.

That is exactly what happened! Maybe I enjoyed it a wee bit too much if you know what I mean! So, thank you, Kim. Thank you, Jana, Cami, and Jeanie from Elite Events. And thank you, to my adorable son, Connor, who was the lone man in the kitchen, there to help with whatever the ladies asked him to do!


Anne and I, gave Peggy her official birthday kiss.


Peggy with her darling parents, her brother, John, and her sister-in-law, Lorraine. Take note of Peggy’s pink crown and scepter. The Birthday Princess!


Anne and Dave at the appetizer buffet. The bar is in the background…


… thanks Anne for taking this picture of the bar, I can see your reflection in the window and I see myself in the kitchen. What am I doing in there?! I think I was cutting green onions for the mashed potatoes and talking to Kim about the recipes. This was prior to the guests arriving. Well, of course, Anne was a guest too, but she was and is much more than that! She helped me so much in putting on this gala event. Love you girl! xoxo


Along with the full bar, we offered two signature cocktails…

pink pear

The Pink Pear

1 1/2 ounces pear vodka
3 ounces mango nectar or pineapple juice
1-ounce cranberry juice
Lemon juice, for rim
Pink or gold sugar, for the rim

Dip the rim of a clear “highball” glass in lemon juice, then dip into sugar. Fill the glass with ice.

Gently layer the vodka, then the nectar, then the cranberry juice into the glass for an ombre cocktail.

Serves 1

pink chihuahua

Pink Chihuahua

Coarse pink salt
1-ounce tequila
1/2 ounce Grand Marnier
3/4 cup grapefruit juice
Grapefruit slice, for garnish

Dip the rim of a clear “rocks” glass in lemon juice, then dip into sugar. Fill the glass with ice. Pour tequila and Grand Marnier over ice.

Top with grapefruit juice and stir. Garnish with a slice of grapefruit.

Serves 1


Also on the bar, were bowls of the ever-popular Ranch Oyster Crackers, also known as Crack Crackers. These are seriously addicting!


Another fun 50th birthday party touch was a little something else I found on eBay …


…vintage magazines from February 1963 – the month and year of Peggy’s birth.


I had them scattered around on the various tables for the guests’ reading and reminiscing enjoyment during the cocktail hour and then sent them home with Peggy after the party as keepsakes.


A photo collage that Peggy’s gorgeous oldest daughter, Samme (pictured above with Peggy) made. Thanks for letting me use this Samme! xoxo

Tomorrow – please come back for the appetizer recipes…

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1 Peggy { 02.27.13 at 9:42 AM }

First to post a comment… the Birthday “Princess”. Love it Linda!

2 Anne { 02.27.13 at 9:52 AM }

BeaUtiFuL!!!! Linda, so fun to read and live it all over again! It was an honor and joy to be a “helper” and a “participator” at Peggy’s birthday!! You are generous and kind and Peggy is SO deserving of celebrating…. We love that girl. Hey, and even clean up day was fun…seeing you again and sharing more laughs…priceless! Love you!:))

3 Linda Hopkins { 02.27.13 at 10:00 AM }

Aw, yes Anne – sharing more laughs about how many Pink Chihuahuas I had and the less than redeeming effects those had on me. Seriously Priceless! xoxo

4 Jennifer Markett { 02.27.13 at 2:59 PM }

WoW!! Absolutely beautiful!! And so fun to look at. xoxo

5 Jana { 02.28.13 at 12:37 PM }

This was such a beautiful event! We honestly had so much fun “working” this party. I have told everyone about your party, home, family, guests and this site! I absolutely adored you all! I have already made the crack crackers and your microwave brownies.

6 Linda Hopkins { 02.28.13 at 12:53 PM }

Jana! Thank you! For the wonderfully sweet comment and for the amazing work that you, Cami, and Jeanie did to make the party such a success. Everyone commented to me and complimented the three of you all night long. Speaking of the crack crackers – I sent the leftovers back to the dorm with Connor and yesterday he sent me the funniest photo. I think I’ll post it tomorrow, cracked me up! Take care and at our next event, I’ll be sure to request you three when I call Sara! xoxo

7 Karen { 03.05.13 at 8:22 PM }

Beautiful-everything looks absolutely beautiful and scrumptious! So glad Peggy had a wonderful celebration – she is very blessed to have you, sweet girl, in her life!

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