The fourth of July long weekend is so close I can taste it! My office is closing early today (3pm) and is closed tomorrow, so I feel like I am getting an extra special Independence Day celebration weekend.
My agenda for the long weekend includes beach, BBQ, patio dining and "Magic Mike XXL."
On Sunday I'll be hosting about 15 friends for a backyard BBQ. I've been plotting the details of the shindig via Pinterest for months and I thought if you're planning to host family and friends this weekend, you might like to see some of my best red, white and blue discoveries.
Let's start with decor. I usually like to put something on the front steps or the front door that gets people excited right when they arrive. I really like these patriotic luminaries. Easy to make and nice and sturdy if there's a little breeze.
If you have a back yard or a side yard and something to string things between (a fence, a tent), then you have to do this mix of red, white and blue streamers with party lights!
Now what fourth of July party would be complete without festive cocktails? I love this recipe for Patriotic Punch (the original recipe is actually non-alcoholic). It just has three ingredients, plus ice. Add some vodka, rum or tequila to these puppies and you're good to go!
Since I'm a vegetarian, when I host BBQs I mostly focus on the apps and the dessert. One of my good friends always volunteers to be grill master, so I don't spend too much time focusing on the burgers, hot dogs and fixings.
In my Pinterest search for this year's soiree, most of the gems I found where for desserts.
As you all know, I am not really a fruit dessert person, but when mixed with brownies, I could definitely get on board!
For treats that are easy to carry and eat in the yard, try these individual cheesecake cups. You can make the star cookies that serve as the garnish or get them at the store (let's be honest, I'll be getting them at Star Market).
If you want another confection that requires minimal assembly or baking, buy a box of ice cream sandwiches and three packages of sprinkles (red, white and blue) and decorate the ice cream portion of each sandwich!
Lastly, if you are planning a camp fire or fire pit, check out these s'mores on steroids! Instead of graham crackers you can use chocolate chip cookies.
I hope all this BBQ talk has you excited for this weekend. Is there something you make every year for the fourth? I'd love to hear your go-to dishes!
*All images courtesy of Pinterest.