The holidays are wonderful and overwhelming all at once. There’s always so much going on, it can be hard to slow down and enjoy the season with your loved ones. This year, I wanted to make it a point to do just that — slow down, express gratitude, and revel in positive vibes. I decided to invite my friends over for a PRE-holiday celebration: before our calendars got swallowed up with work parties, family obligations, and travel. What better way than wine and cheese?
First, I found some amazing round cutting boards from Shutterfly. I am still in that newlywed/nesting phase, so I monogramed them with my new moniker. (Who could resist a little self-gifting this time of year?!) Designing was easy — I was able to customize the font and everything — and I knew they’d be perfect for creating elegant cheeseboards that are just as pretty as they are scrumptious. The decoration in the middle practically demands more artful styling, and encouraged me to mix up the toppings in small groupings. (It’s also worth noting, the quality is really impressive — I plan to order a few more for gifts!)
Then, I used Shutterfly to customize a few party favors for each of the girls. Living in Los Angeles can feel a bit isolating, so I’ve found it to be really important to nurture the connections I’ve made since moving here. By customizing a few “takeaways”, we’d all be able to remember the evening fondly long after the holidays have passed.
First, I chose monogrammed heart ornaments, which I feel is a perfect symbol of the season ahead. I made one with each girl’s initial, which is etched in glass. When the girls arrived, it was fun watching them admire the decor and then notice that there was an ornament for each of them.
Next, the wine! I bought each girl’s favorite bottle of wine and dressed it in a cute cotton wine bag. Shutterfly does have the option to customize these, but I wanted to keep a congruent theme throughout. You’ll also see the same “CHEERS” with a heart on each wine glass. I was surprised to find so many options when it came to customizing, and toyed with the idea of using their initials there, but I thought it was a nice sentiment for us each to have the same glass in our own homes. (I’ve already received a text — one of the girls decided to use her glass to hold makeup brushes. So cute!)
The last item — the pièce de résistance, if you will — was a glass decanter, that we admittedly refilled a few times throughout the night. I thought about monogramming it with my last name to match the cutting boards, but I wanted to keep the evening’s cheeky theme going. “Dinner Is Poured” and a matching heart was the winner — and the prize! After a lively game of Cards Against Humanity, the winner got to take it home with her.
I really enjoy entertaining and Shutterfly made it really easy. I was able to get a few entertaining essentials, plus customized gifts for all of the guests. And when the holidays get stressful in a few weeks, well, we’ll have our wine.