Saturday, February 23, 2008

Party Basics for New Nesters

While I may not technically be considered a “new nester” anymore (I’ve been married for about a year and a half) I found there was still much to learn as I flipped through the yet-to-be-released Party Basics for New Nesters (thanks to my new friend, Julia.) A scrapbook of sorts, filled with practical tips and sparkly ones too, Maria McBride details the perfect plans for just about any event.
Anyone can throw a party (or entice a loved one with breakfast in bed, have a close couple over for dinner, etc.) but simple, thoughtful details can make memorable moments, and this book is full of these sorts of memory makers. While the book is structured for a year full of holidays, McBride’s tips are versatile- I can see her Cinco de Mayo drinks and décor working perfectly for a bachelorette party, and her “spring fling” flower cubes and mini cupcakes would be beautiful at an upcoming bridal shower.
What’s most charming about the book isn’t the gorgeous pictures or fresh ideas- it’s the love story that lies beneath. McBride, whose been married to her college sweetheart for many years, recalls her own stories from early in her marriage, weaving them flawlessly into the grander scheme of the book- making events memorable.
What might be missing are more recipes (but maybe that’s because I feel that food is an integral part of any gathering.) Although her butternut squash soup and stuffed shrimp are seemingly perfect selections for the book. And I applaud the final pages, where McBride lists resources for all of the items used in her book. How many times have you flipped through a magazine and thought, I could make that, if only I knew where to pick up red gingham ribbon and Joss paper? McBride leaves no mystery to her readers- if you see it here, and you’re inspired to make it, you can find the supplies.
If you’re in need of a winter pick me up, something to help you spice up your next dinner party, or a gift for a bride to be, I recommend this book.

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