The Ultimate Tailgate Party

After months and months of waiting, the wait finally over. Football season is here! If you’re from the South you know just how big of a deal college football is. As most of you know, I could care less about football. I still don’t fully understand how the game is played. But that doesn’t matter. It doesn’t stop me from throwing one heck of a tailgate party.

Last week I was invited on WSFA’s Alabama Live for a quick segment on how to plan the Ultimate Tailgate Party. If you missed it, you can watch it HERE. We could talk all day long about how to throw a party, but some many people are visual learners like myself, so I decided to style a mock tailgate party. I called my friend Lauren at Milly Photography to capture it all.  2016-09-25_0007 When planning any event, wedding or party there are always a few MUST-HAVES. A tailgate party is no exception. We’ve come up with 3 things that are essential for any tailgate party. The first, You can’t have the proper tailgate party without Entertainment. Wether that’s a game of corn hole, tossing the football on the lawn or cranking up the music. It’s a must! 2016-09-26_0001 Next, you can’t have a tailgate party without you team spirit. Bring you shakers, table clothes, flags and foam fingers. It certainly adds to the festive table decor.  2016-09-25_0002 2016-09-25_0016 2016-09-25_0001 I’m the type of person that will spend extra money on fancy paper plates or cute striped straws, but I’ll buy a cheap lawn chair to save a few bucks. I’m a party planner, don’t judge me! That’s exactly what I did here– We picked up a $6.00 chair from Wal-Mart instead of purchasing one of those fancy $50.00 legit team chairs. I found these inexpensive pillows from the “Dollar Spot” at Target and with a little iron on transfer, I created a custom pillow for under $10.00. Super easy! ANYONE can do it.  2016-09-25_0014 Last but not least. It’s IMPOSSIBLE to throw a tailgate party without the proper food and drink. BBQ sliders, wings and chicken fingers are a few of my favorite easy pick-up foods. But I was recently introduced to a quick and easy sausage dip that is TO DIE FOR. You HAVE to try it. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Sausage Dip

(2) 8 Ounce Cream Cheese | 1 Cup Sour Cream | 2 Cups grated cheddar cheese | 1lb of Ground Sausage | 1 can of Diced Green Chiles

*Brown and drain sausage. Mix with all other ingredients. Bake at 350 for 1 hour.

If you choose to wash it down with a cocktail, we suggest doing it with a little team spirit, of course. Our friend and one of our favorite past brides, Jean helped us round up a few recipes that are sure to impress your tailgating guests. For the Auburn Fan….

Aubie Palmer Cocktail:

1.5 Old Forester Bourbon  | 1.5 Lemonade | Top off w/ Milos Sweet Tea

2016-09-26_0002 and of course, we can’t leave the Alabama fan out. A yummy fruity drink fits them properly, I think.

Yellowhammer Cocktail:

3/4 oz. White Rum | 3/4 oz. Coconut Rum | 1/2 oz. amaretto | 2 oz. orange juice | 2 oz. pineapple juice

2016-09-26_0003 and for those that choose to have a classic game soda, barqs glass bottle root beer will hit the spot.  2016-09-25_0008 2016-09-25_0005 After all those yummy eats and drinks, you have to have a quick sweet treat before entering the stadium. We stopped by Liger’s bakery for those. You can’t go wrong with THE BEST petite fours in town. Their also famous for those mint thumbprint cookies, too, but my personal fave….the Iced Sugar Cookies.  2016-09-25_0012 2016-09-26_0004 As promised on WSFA’s Alabama Live, I’m giving away a pair of tickets to the AUBURN vs. ALABAMA A&M Homecoming game. It’s super easy to win– all you have to do is comment this post. We’ll select a winner Saturday, October 8th. Thanks to Mr. and Mrs. A for making this giveaway possible.  2016-09-25_0009 HUGE thanks to Joyce Hubbard for letting us borrow her Auburn Orange truck. It was PERFECT! And of course, my Granny. Those Liger’s goodies wouldn’t have brought themselves. You’re the BEST!

Cookies, Uno, Wildcats and Friendship

Putting yourself out there on a public forum doesn’t often lead to meeting sincere people, but Melissa and Jeremy are one of the exceptions. Melissa has been following me for a couple of years now on Instagram and it wasn’t until just recently we were introduced and I realized her and her husband were local.

Melissa makes some of the most adorable and yummy cakes and cookies. Simply Sugared is something that Mel has been pursuing for the last couple a years as a hobby. It actually was birthed out of wanting to make cakes for her boys and of course with the power of social media business has grown tremendously in the last year and she’s working like a mad women to keep up.

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I think it safe to say Melissa is a pretty hardcore #EGCfan. The Wrights were kind enough to invite me over for dinner. Well it was more than just dinner… they declared the entire week #EGCweek and dinner was just the icing on the cake. When I arrived Gage (6) wanted to make sure I was greeted properly. What wedding planner does love a good chalk board?!

2015-03-15_0001  My Momma taught me well,  NEVER go to someone’s house empty handed. Always take a gift, it’s the southern thing to do. I took a few things, but the hit of the night was Uno Attack. It was one of my FAVORITE games as a kiddo. Gage is obsessed with Uno, so I figured if he loved that, he would love uno attack. Come to find out, Gunner(18 months) might have liked it a bit more. Look at that smile. #bestillmyheart 2015-03-15_0009 After the yummy dinner J prepared, we decided it was time to get out hands a little messy. I LOVE sugar cookies and order them for most of my events and parties so I thought it was about time I actually see the work that goes into them.

Who knew rolling out dough takes some serious bicep muscles….  2015-03-15_0002 ….and so does the royal icing. You have to get that food color distributed perfectly. It a tough job. Though, I could eat it with a spoon. 2015-03-15_0003 As if baking with Melissa wasn’t enough Jeremy is crazy talented and serenaded us with a couple of acoustic John Legend and Ed Sheeran jams while we got our bake on. He knows the way to my heart. 2015-03-15_0004 Us guys put our decorating skills to the test. Though we’re not as good as Mrs. Simply Sugared herself, I thought we did pretty well, of course my skill level being the worst.  2015-03-15_0006 Don’t mess with us. We’re in the zone. #focusedfaces 2015-03-15_0005 I must admit, I thought my finished products turned out pretty nice, especially for my first time EVER. Those doughnuts are just too cute. I can’t stop staring at them. Maybe it’s because I made them from start to finish. #snapsforEGC 2015-03-15_0007 After we wrapped our cookie decorating party, we chatted like we’d be friends for years. Cookies, business, Wildcats and everything in between. We covered it. I didn’t leave Casa de Wright until 2am. I’m not lying when I say they are some of the sweetest people I’ve EVER met. Jeremy believes in Melissa like I’ve never seen anyone believe in someone before. Always pushing her to be the best she can be and supporting her to chase after her goals and dreams. Melissa is a FANTASTIC mother, wife and baker. But to me, she’s a fantastic, loyal friend. The cakes and cookies are a plus, but I would trade them in a heart beat it came down to friendship or baked goods. Our friendship is one that will be lasting no matter where life takes us and I am thankful the Lord has allowed our paths to cross. I’m still trying to figure out why I ignored her email for years. #oops  2015-03-15_0008 Thanks again for opening your home to me and also believing in me, and cheering me on. But most importantly #GoCats.