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Celebrate MLB Opening Day

Pinterest Graphic-Opening DayIt’s the most wonderful time of year….no, not Christmas!  Baseball season!  Today is the official opening day of Major League Baseball and there is no better way to celebrate than by hosting a baseball watch party.  Invite all of your baseball loving friends over to watch your favorite team start the season.  We watched the St. Louis Cardinals play yesterday (unfortunately they lost) and my husband was as giddy as a schoolgirl when the game started.  Some things are essential to watching baseball: hot dogs, cracker jacks, sunflower seeds, peanuts, bubble gum, and beer.  Here’s a look at how I styled our little three person watch party.

Baseball Opening DayI placed cracker jacks in baseball themed cupcake holders so they would be the perfectly sized individual little treat.

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Baseball Opening DayI wrapped up our hot dogs in coffee filters and tied them with red and white bakers twine to make the whole package look like a baseball with red stitching.  This is a great way to serve hot dogs because your guests or you can just pick them up and go, portable food is always a win.  Plus the coffee filter will catch any crumbs that may fall when eating them.

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To make hot dogs from home taste a little more like hot dogs from the ballpark, try boiling them until they are done (starting to split on the ends), and then grill them in a grill pan for a few minutes to sear the skin on the outside.  It’s the closest they will taste to hot dogs that have been rotating on one of those roller grills.

Baseball Opening DayPulling a few of these baseball themed foods together will add a special flair to opening day or any other regular season baseball game.  Plus, who doesn’t love a hot dog?  I of course had to throw in a little St. Louis Cardinals gear to support our team!  Who do you root for during baseball season, or are you just watching for the hot dogs and beer?

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The Reason for Last Week’s Radio Silence

Happy Monday friends!  It’s good to be back, I hope you had a great weekend.  If you didn’t notice I wasn’t around this part of the internet last week.  I am currently in the Navy Reserves and had to do some work for them in Hawaii last week.  There are worse places to have to work, but I did miss my family and was glad to get home.  Today I’m going to share with you some of the things I did while I was there, call it a mini-trip report.  If you ever plan to go to Oahu, there is a lot to see and do, hopefully some of these tips will help guide you.

The view from my hotel balcony.

The view from my hotel balcony.

I was working on Oahu last week, and my husband and I used to live there when we were first engaged and married, so we have quite a bit of knowledge of the island and things to do. Being back there brought back so many memories of the beginning of our marriage!  It was fun to reminisce while driving around the island.

I was able to go on a Remembrance tour of Pearl Harbor on an Admiral’s barge which was pretty cool.  If you are into history at all visiting the Arizona Memorial and touring the battleship USS Missouri, is an awesome experience.  Seeing these things from the harbor on the water was even cooler.

The entrance to the boat house.

The entrance to the boat house.

The Admiral's barge, not the boat I was on, it's reserved for extremely important dignitaries.

The Admiral’s barge, not the boat I was on, it’s reserved for extremely important dignitaries.

It’s amazing to think of all the things that have happened in this harbor and it’s hard not to get a little emotional when you think about all of the sacrifice that was made here.

USS Utah Memorial

USS Utah Memorial

That gap in the tree line is the entrance to Pearl Harbor.

That gap in the tree line is the entrance to Pearl Harbor.

There are a ton of great places to eat around the island, but a one of our favorites is Roy’s, with a Hawaiian inspired, international menu.  We love going to the Hawaii Kai (the original) location right before sunset because the view is amazing.  If you’re in downtown Waikiki, another fun, more casual place to eat is Duke’s.  It’s right on the beach and always busy.  If you don’t mind, I recommend just sitting in the bar area, you’ll get a table much faster and maybe a table right next to the beach.  You can try the classic mai tai here, but boy is it strong!

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If you’re headed around the island a few other places to try are the shrimp trucks on the North Shore, and Maui Mike’s in Wahiawa.

For breakfast, or anytime of the day really, you must try hot malasadas, emphasis on the hot!  They are delicious little round bits of fried dough rolled in sugar or stuffed with custard or chocolate.  Mmmmm, my mouth is watering just thinking about them.  The best place to get them is at Leonard’s, there’s one in Waikiki and another food truck version in Waikele.

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I also recommend stopping at the Dole plantation on your way to the North Shore, even if it’s just for their pineapple ice cream.  There’s nothing like it!

Obviously, there are a ton of outdoor activities on the island.  Surfing, kayaking, hiking, paddle boarding, relaxing on the beach, you name it, you can do it.  My favorite beach is Lanikai because the water is really shallow, perfect for just relaxing in the water, and it’s super warm.  Other’s like Kailua are really nice and Waikiki beach is good for taking surfing lessons or a catamaran ride, it’s just very busy with tourists.  Sandy’s beach has some big waves you can play in, just be careful, they’re pretty strong.  And the North Shore has a ton of surf competitions that are fun to watch.

There are also a ton of great hike’s around the island.  Most of them have great views from the top, but varying difficulty levels.  Some good one’s that are a little harder are Pillbox and KoKo Head, while Diamond head is pretty easy and has great views of downtown.  Maunawilli Falls is another great hike that ends at a waterfall with a pretty large swimming area.

Your trip to Hawaii wouldn’t be complete without going to a luau.  I highly recommend the Paradise Cove luau.  It’s a little pricy but the show and the food are amazing.  I could literally eat kalua pig every day!

Super old picture from 2009-ish.

Super old picture from 2009-ish.

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Hawaii is a great place to go, but it definitely helps to know a few insider tips and places to go. Hopefully this Hawaii mini-trip report is a good place to start.  If you are planning a trip and want more thorough information be sure to let me know and I’ll do my best to give you the best advice.

Sorry I wasn’t able to post last week, but being in a tropical paradise was a little distracting.  I plan on getting back on track this week.  What did you do last week, anything fun?

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The Inaugural Address

Welcome to The Daily Hostess!  I figured for my first ever blog post I’d make it really official by deeming it an inaugural address and showing you some pretty red, white, and blue Memorial Day party decor.  Don’t worry I’m not trying to get all political #justaplayonwords.

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When thinking about what an inaugural address is I came across descriptions like a formal ceremony.  The president is supposed to use the inaugural address to inform the country of his intentions, so I thought it was fitting to inform you of my intentions with this blog. I believe that by setting expectations early it always proves for a more successful outcome, and I’ve seen this first hand in the Navy.

So, what are my intentions with this blog you ask? Well, first and foremost I want to inspire you. I love planning parties, making things pretty and special then inviting people into my home to share that with them. If you don’t like throwing parties or having people over maybe I can convince you that it’s not so bad and provide you with some encouragement and fun ideas along the way. If you love the same things I do, then I hope to inspire you to expand your horizons and push your creative boundaries.

I want this to be a place of inspiration, encouragement, and a celebration. You’ll see posts about how to make every day things a little extra special, the party planning process, home décor, hosting guests of all walks of life, and maybe a few random thoughts thrown in for good measure.  I’ve done my fair share of home entertaining and I want to show you fun ways to host a wine party, dinner party, or a cookie exchange.  Maybe you have a pool and are throwing a summer pool party.  Let me give you some great ideas to make your party extra special.

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To kick off the summer this year my husband and I hosted a Memorial Day Pool Party.  We broke out the red, white, and splashed in the blue of our backyard pool.  To make the party truly a Memorial Day celebration we hung the American flag from our pergola using some extra rope we had lying around in the garage and a curtain rod that’s not in use in the house.  If you don’t have an extra curtain rod, no worries, use anything that can slip through the opening on the flag.  How about  a broom handle, semi straight stick from the yard, or take down the curtains from a room you know the guests aren’t going to be in and use that.  Just remember to shut the door to the room if you don’t want anyone to see your naked windows.

When our guests needed to lounge we provided them when some appropriately themed beach towels and a pillow to rest their head.  We grabbed the towels from Costco just a couple of days before the party.  I love them because they are HUGE (the towels are even bigger at Costco) and super absorbent.  I tried to stick with the red, white, and blue theme without being too kitschy.  Those red striped pillows can also be seen around here at Christmas time.

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I love using thrifted silver trays to hold all the necessities of the drink station.  Plus it keeps the cups from touching possibly dirty outdoor surfaces, bonus!

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After that patriotic post I just want to say that this is the official opening of The Daily Hostess and the beginning of a new adventure.  Grab a glass of champagne, get inspired, and come celebrate with me on the journey and see where it takes us. I’m excited!

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Celebrating everyday!