Starbucks Barista: What would you like today?
Me: A tall, hot, apple cider with no whipped cream and no caramel drizzle please.
Starbucks Barista: …so you want hot apple juice?
Me: Um… Yes… Please.
…hmm…I’ve spending my precious gift card money on hot juice??
As I reevaluate the way I spend my Starbucks giftcards, I’d like to share a few easy party food ideas. No fuss last minute things that would be great for Christmas but also New Years Eve or any other time you and your loved ones are gathering for some relaxing fun.
This super simple spread was what I laid out for a little Christmas PJ Party we hosted last weekend.
I loved how the house looked with a giant pile of pillows and warm glow from the fire and Christmas lights. What I didn’t love was the idea of spending a ton of time on party food. Here are my easy ideas:
Caprese skewers. I’ve never met a more well liked salad than the simple caprese. Nothing weird, kid approved. All I did was thread some large basil leaves onto a skewer with alternating tomatoes and mozzarella pearls. I sprinkled them all with salt and pepper and made sure to slice the bottom tomato in half so these would stand up straight.
Cranberry-Orange Goat Cheese Salad with Garlic Parmesan Breadsticks.
The salad is baby spinach, cranberries (mine were the ones that are pomegranate flavor), orange slices, and crumbled goat cheese with regular, store bought balsamic vinaigrette. It’s my new favorite. The chef at my preschool made a similar salad for our Christmas Party in early December and it was amazing.
The breadsticks were made from a pillsbury pizza dough. I laid the dough out flat, sliced it with a pizza wheel into sticks, twisted the sticks, and brushed them with melted butter. Before I put them in the oven, I sprinkled them with italian seasoning, garlic salt and parmesan cheese. Bake for 8 minutes at the temperature on the package.
To spice up our regular old wine glasses, I added an apple garnish made by slicing a green apple through the middle and cutting out the core with a heart shaped cookie cutter. I rubbed both sides with lemon to keep the apple from turning completely brown. These looked lovely with the lemonade-raspberry ice cubes that cooled our wine!
To make these fun ice cubes, just fill each well of an ice cube tray with any kind of fruit. Then pour over your favorite juice (I was thinking white wine sangria here so I used lemonade but apple juice would be great too).
For “dessert”, if you can call it that, I dipped marshmallows in melted dark chocolate and sprinkled them with graham cracker crumbs. They are totally addicting. Sort of obsessed now.
And Lilly helped me make “Elf Cookies” which came from a (Mom don’t read this) PACKAGE of Nestle Tollhouse refrigerated cookie dough. You know, that kind that comes in a flat brick that you are supposed to “break” apart and bake? I know, I know. How could I do such a thing?! Anyway, I cut each cookie into 4 pieces to make tiny elf cookies. If you do this, be really careful how long you bake the cookies- some of mine were a little too crispy!
Sent out another blanket last weekend that I fell completely and madly in love with. If I ever have a boy, I’m so going with this beautiful color palette.
Chain 80-100 depending on how big you want your finished blanket.
Chain one extra.
Single crochet into second chain from the hook all the way until the end. Repeat for entire skein of yarn.
Switch colors and repeat process for all 5 colors.
This blanket was done in the following colors of Vanna’s Choice yarn:
dark grey heather
mustard (two skeins)
To make a larger blanket, chain 150 to start, and use seven different colors instead of five.
(Original pattern can be found here.)
See these two posts for more details: Color Block Blankets and Color Block Baby Afghans or visit my Etsy Shop to see finished blankets available for sale.
chris nalbone says
So fun and creative as usual. Love the blanket!
What size crochet hook did you use for the blanket?
Thank you Kelsey! It’s a size 1/9-5.50mm
What type and name of yarn did you use? Love this blanket!
Katrina, it’s called Vanna’s Choice 🙂 exact colors are listed in the post. 5 skeins total.
I’ve never crocheted before but I would love to make this blanket. Do you know of a good tutorial for learning how to crochet? I sew and quilt but I really want to do this for our little one . . . it’s beautiful!!!
Search youtube for learn to crochet videos! That’s how I learned. I had to watch quite a few videos before it really stuck but there are *tons* of good tutorial videos on there. I can’t remember which video I used specifically, but there are so many good ones now you should be able to find one pretty easily! Good luck! If you make a blanket I’d love to see it!
Thanks! Joann’s is having a 50% off sale on the Vanna yarn this week plus there is a 25% off coupon so I figured it was a good time to start a new project!!! I’ll post a picture when I finish 🙂 I want to do a pink/grey/white blanket!
Oooh thanks for sharing! I think I’ll be popping in to pick up some yarn too! Those colors will be beautiful.
Just ran by Joann’s and it ended up only being 25% off + 25% off coupon. Still a good deal but not as good as I had hoped 🙂
I’ve started the first chain . . . when you say “chain one more”, do you mean one extra stitch on the chain or make a whole separate chain? Sorry, I’m new at this!
One more (one extra) stitch on the chain- it’s your “turning” chain. Hope that makes sense!
Thanks! I guess the length of the chain will be the width of the blanket, right? So if I want it to be wider I just make a longer chain? This is kind of fun so far!
Sorry, another question . . . what was the finished dimension of your blanket?
What size crochet needle?
Mary Ann says
What size crochet needle did you use?
Size J, I believe!
Can you tell me what the finished dimensions of this blanket are? Thanks!
Did you crochet right to the end of each skein of yarn or did you change colours at the end of a row?
Marilyn, I changed colors at the end of the row when it looked like I didn’t have enough yarn left to complete another row…
About how long did this take you? I’m new at this and I know single can take a long time!
It took me about an hour/color!
Love the color combo you used! Very pretty.
when you finish your second row and you’re going into your third do you stitch into the last or second chain from the end? I’m new at this. thank you 🙂
you never include turning chains so you stitch into the second stitch if I am understanding you correctly! 🙂 good luck!
Beautiful! I don’t crochet great but think I could do this. Thank you.
This is a beautiful blanket! Just love the colors. Going tomorrow to pick up my yarn and hoping they have these same colors still 🙂 I have a question regarding the instructions of “Single crochet into second chain from the hook all the way until the end. Repeat for entire skein of yarn.”
Do you mean you skip every other single stitch on each row vs doing a single crochet in every stitch?
Do you chain an extra on every row or just the first row?
Every row! It’s your “turning chain”. If you leave it out, your blanket will start to shrink 😉
What where the final dimensions? I want to make this for my son, but he’s 16, so I would assume that would be a bit different from a child’s blanket!
The dimensions of this one are about 38″ x 42″ depending on how tight (or how loose) you hook.
What size skeins were they that you used?
I don’t know the size off hand… but they were Lion Brand Vanna’s choice… I’m sure you could find it online or in store 🙂
Amazing blog! Is your theme custom made or did you download it from somewhere?
A theme like yours with a few simple adjustements would really make my blog stand out.
Please let me know where you got your theme. Bless you
When you do the single crochet stitch, are you doing it through the front, back, or both loops? This project is so cute! I saw it on Pinterest and because of it I have been teaching myself to crochet. I love it so far. Thank you!
I love this pattern, but I would love to make it in an adult size. Have you made one in adult size before and if so, how many chains do you start with? Thank you!
How many skeins of each yarn? Would love to make this blanket.
Dianne Radeka says
I want to make this blanket in a queen size. Can you tell me howl many skeins of yarn I will need and how many stitches I need to hook on to start with??
Thank you! Dianne
Hi Dianne, honestly I don’t know the answer to your questions. You would definitely need to triple the yarn I would think (so 21+ skeins?) and just make your starting chain slightly smaller than a queen size comforter.
Tiffany Gongre says
I tried to order an apple cider yesterday. When I got to the office and took a sip, coffee with apple juice in it. Barf!
Paula 'Dell says
What size are the skeins you are using I’m using 7 ounce skeins and it looks like I have several more rows than you have on your blanket.