Stylish Playdates

Why host a playdate? Because kids and moms deserve organized fun where kids play and moms play catch-up.

Playdates don’t have to be structured, and shouldn’t be most of the time. But every once in a while, perhaps a few times a season, have a playdate with kids and their moms. Host a gathering filled with a craft, a game, and a bit more to eat than pretzels. The children will be excited about the play, activity or holiday celebrated, treats served, and special memories are sure to be created.

This time also builds mom-to-mom relationships, giving you a chance to chat with each other about things that touch your lives: charities, hobbies, or passions, all while enjoying a cup of tea or glass of wine. It doesn’t need to be spectacular, but can be easy, with simple crafts, and recipes and you’ll find it well worth the effort.

 

Summer Fun

 
Summer Fun
 
It's a warm sunny, summer day, and a perfect day for a playdate!
 
Break-out a pitcher of lemonade and let the fun begin.
easy summer fun is the focus here, a simple menu for the kids and adults, paired with a festive craft, make it easy to entertain in perfect summer style!
 
Activity
 
Whirly Pin-Wheels
 
These festive pinwheels will add pizazz to any bike or camp backpack!
 
To make:
Crafted from soft, foamy sheets, which come in a rainbow of colors, can be found at any craft store, making this craft just right for any age. 
 
You'll Need;
 
Wooden Clothespins
4-inch squares of foamy sheets
Chenille stems
Pony beads
Tacky glue
 
How-to:
1. Take a 4-inch square of foam and cut a line diagonally from each corner to the center, stopping 1/4 inch from the center.
2. Cut the chenille stem in half, and fold one corner of each side towards the center. Poke the stem through the corners, string a pony bead on the stem, and bend the top of the stem down around the bead.
Glue or wrap the long end of chenille stem to clothespin.
 
 
Menu
 
Childrens
 
Sparkling Cherry Bombs
Star shaped Sandwiches
Brownie Pop-stars
 
Adults
 
Mini Pizzas
Mixed green salad
Nantucket Lemonade
 
Recipes
Sparkling Cherry bombs
 
2 liters orange flavored sparkling water
1/2 cup cherry juice
cherries for garnish
 
Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher. Fill with ice, and serve.
 
Star shaped sandwiches
 
Make a variety of sandwiches, some summer favorites are mozzarella and tomato, turkey and cheese, and tomato and mayonaise. With several differnet sized cookie cutter, press firmly into the bread, and so that the cookie cutter cuts through the bread. 
 
Brownie Pop Stars
Prepare a packaged brownie mix, when all of the ingredients are mixed, add 1/2 cup chocolate chips. Spoon mix into star shaped silicone baking molds. Bake according to instructions. Let cool. Pop out brownies form forms, and insert a lollipop stick on the side of each star. 
To serve: fill a small bucket with jelly beans or small candies and poke pops into  to arrange.
 
Adults Menu
 
Fresh Tomato and basil pizzas
 
3 large red or yellow tomatoes
1 yellow onion, sliced thinly
6 basil leaves
1 package pizza dough
olive oil
1/2 cup grated cheese
4 ounces sliced parmesan  cheese
 
Divide and roll pizza dough into 6-inch mini-pizzas
 
In a saucepan heat 3 tablespoons olive oil, saute yellow onions until soft, and remove.
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and saute the tomatoes until soft. Add basil, and parmesan cheese, remove from heat.
 
On top of each pizza place a spoonful of the onions, and then tomatoes, and top off with a few slices of parmesan cheese.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.
 
Nantucket Cocktails
 
Island Girls
8 oz. cranberry juice
8 oz. vodka
4 oz. ginger-ale
2 oz. lime juice
lime slices for garnish
 
 
Mix all ingredients in a large pitcher, add ice, pour into glasses and serve immediately.


May Flowers

In springtime, the weather can be unpredictable but this playdate’s  activities and menu will adapt perfectly to an indoor setting, as well as out in the spring sunshine. Children love these artist inspired pots, a great combination project of recycling and gardening all in one!

Activity

Blooming pot

To Make:

The supplies for this craft can all be found at the local craft store, I have even found them in the bigger grocery stores. To make things easier for the little ones, I pre-cut the origami papers into squares and rectangles.

You’ll Need:

         Tin cans that have been emptied and cleaned. One per child.
         Oragami papers in bright colors or patterns
         Modge Podge glue
         Paint brushes, small foam ones work best
         Potting soil
         Seed packets

 
How-To:
Cut the origami paper into squares and rectangles. Coat the tin with a layer of Modge Podge, using the paintbrush. Arrange the origami papers onto the tin by pressing firmly. Brush on a top layer of glue, and once the tin is covered, set to dry. It will dry clear.
Once dry, Fill the can about two-thirds full with potting soil. Sprinkle 6-8 seeds on top and press seeds into soil. Water lightly and set in a sunny place.
 
Eats

Kids

Lemonade
Cheeseydogs in pastry
Fresh fruit
Artist cookies

Adults
Asparagus and ham wrapped in pastry
Hummus dip and crackers
Pink Lady Punch
Recipes
Lemonade

         1 cup simple syrup( see recipe below)
         2 cups fresh lemon juice
         8 cups cold water
         6 cups ice cubes
        
Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher or large vessel and mix well. 
 
Simple syrup
Combine 1 cup water and 1 cup sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir constantly until the sugar has dissolved and the liquid is clear, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool. The syrup will keep, refrigerated in a sealed jar or container, for up to 1 week.

CheesyDogs in Puffed Pastry

         1 package turkey or beef frankfurters
         1 roll pre-made cresent rolls
         8 slices American cheese

On a clean surface, slice the hot dogs lengthwise about 2/3 of the way through. Fold cheese and place it inside hot dog. Unwrap the crescent pastry and roll-out flat. Roll each hotdog in a piece of pastry. Lay on baking sheet, bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

Artsy Cookies

Light and fluffy with a shortbread-like consistency. Yummy!

         1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
         1 cup sugar
         1 teaspoon vanilla extract
         2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
         ¼ teaspoon salt
         Vanilla icing(see recipe below)
         Tubes of colored icings

1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray or line with parchment paper.

2. In a medium bowl, cream the butter and and sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in the vanilla. In another bowl, combine the flour and salt. Stir with a whisk to blend.

3. Stir the dry ingredients into the butter mixture. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a round log, cut into rounds about ¼ inch thick. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown. Cool completely.

4. Ice the cookies with vanilla icing, and decorate with the colored tubes of icing.

Adult Recipes

Asparagus and ham in puffed pastry

An easy way to entertain elegantly, I pick up grilled asparagus spears and slices of balckforest ham, and a roll of pastry. Much like the cheesydogs, I wrap an asparagus in ham, then roll the combo in a sheet of pastry dough. Pop in the oven set at 350 degreesF for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Take out and serve. Simple, right?

Punch

         Punch Bowl and Glasses
         2 bottles(750ml each) chilled zinfandel or rose wine.
         ½ cup apricot brandy
         ½ cup Cointreau
         1 cup orange juice

Combine chilled ingredients in a punch bowl and add ice cubes. Serve.

 


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Copyright © 2010 Colleen Mullaney, All Rights Reserved.