By: Maddie Kerth
As if I needed another excuse to celebrate my gorgeously talented and stunningly beautiful girl gang, GALentine’s Day flew in right as we all were about to be swallowed whole by the freezing cold darkness of winter time in NYC. We are a mixed bag of artists, musicians, storytellers, creatives, and professionals and we are living in the greatest city in the world during the worst year ever. I knew my girls needed a pick me up, so I got to work planning the ultimate, COVID conscious, Galentine’s Day celebration!
Disclaimer: While the invite list of this gathering consisted only of members of our quarantine pod group, all of us received negative COVID results before attending. This virus is serious. Please be safe!
First and foremost, we MUST set the scene. Because of the circumstances this year, using my apartment as the venue just feels so boring. I see these same walls all day, every day. But at the same time, NYC’s COVID parameters are nowhere near green-lighting private event space rentals. So, I had to get creative!
Moving furniture around is the easiest way to transform your space. Think about the flow of the night. A drink station works perfectly in an easily accessed corner of the room where spills can be tended to quickly. A food station that is nearby, tidy, and grazable keeps all of your girls from having a date with an alcohol saturated stomach and the toilet bowl. But the main focus of any successful Galentine’s set-up is the lovey-dovey, cozy craft station.
I’m just about the sappiest woman you’ll ever meet. So, I wanted to focus on making each of my friends feel super special and loved. We have all leaned on each other for the past 5 years, this past one most of all! This is my way of thanking each of them for sticking around! I wrote poems for each attendee using the letters of their names that doubled as decorations and party favors!
Each gal also took home a monogrammed wine glass (courtesy of my small business, Happy Hour Boozetique), some scrunchies, cartoon stickers, and candy! We also made flower crowns, scribbled on coloring pages, a dance party, and a gift exchange. But we all know that it’s the music at a party that really sends it over the top. We were jamming to one of my newer Spotify playlists, It’s Freezing & We Can’t Go Outside.
Click the picture to stream!
I am never one to turn down a rowdy night, but Galentine’s is something we always want to remember. I’ve found that as a host, controlling the type of drinks throughout the night really ensures that everyone makes it to the last song! We kicked it off with a mimosa bar featuring orange, pineapple, and cranberry juices with lemons, blueberries, and raspberries for garnish. Add in a purple heart paper straw and grab a cocktail napkin and you are good to go! But don’t worry, after dinner the drinks got a little stronger!
Now is as good a time as ever to inject with a HUGE thank you to my party helpers! Cupid and his angels kept all us girls on schedule so we didn’t miss an ounce of fun. He even batched our giggle juice, Cupid’s Love Potion! Recipe below.
Growing up attending the most extravagant, Southern, homemade showers, birthdays, anniversaries, etc., skipping out on food at a party is sacrilegious. But at the same time, we are balling on a budget this year! And all I can say is… thank God for TikTok!
If you have been living under a social media rock this year, a viral recipe for a quick, cheap, and delicious meal has taken over the world. All you need are tomatoes, feta cheese, olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper! (We got fancy and threw in a goat cheese log as well) Toss everything in a baking pan and roast at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes. Boil some pasta, stir it all together, and enjoy! Want an insider tip to take you party the extra mile? T.J. Maxx always has a coolest selection of unique pastas. That’s where I got the heart shaped noodles for this meal!
Check out the TikTok I made the first time I tested out this recipe here!
My friends and I are bigggg snackers. So I also grabbed some bags of buttered and kettle cooked popcorn to serve. Another COVID conscious feature-- prepare the snacks for individual eating! Keep your germs to yourself!
It wouldn't be a Maddie Kerth Kiki without a booming sweets table! I dusted off this layered serving piece to make a dainty grazing board overflowing with sugar. This spread included macarons, meringue cookies, marshmallows, M&Ms, lip-shaped gummy candies, and heart brownies! It’s worth it to take the time to plan out each component of the tray.
Try sticking to a color family or category. And just like with the popcorn, we want the touching to a minimum. Bite-sized treats reduce the need to touch snacks you don’t plan on eating. Keep spoons close to bowls of small sweets and if you find some matching cocktail napkins, you can double them for practical use and decoration!
And the cherry on top was this epic ice cream sundae bar! This is super easy and knocked the socks of my ladies. We did this one potluck-style-- everyone brings a little something to add to the mix! We had chocolate, vanilla, and cookies 'n cream ice cream, caramel sauce, whipped cream, peanut butter chips, fruit, chocolate covered pretzels, cookies, and sprinkles!
"Why is it so hard to accept the party is over?"
Would you even believe me if I told you all of my girls were in Ubers and the floors were mopped by 1AM? We couldn’t have had a more successful evening if we tried! Clean-up went so smoothly! Plastic table clothes on all surfaces create a one-step process. And the best bonus of all… your home is already decorated for you to wake up in a love palace the next morning!
I think the thing I appreciated most about this night is that even when we are all feeling our loneliest, all it takes is a night with your besties to brighten up the skies. COVID is isolating, our early 20-somethings are so confusing, and we are all just trying our best. These people keep me going and keep me grounded! If you were looking for a sign to tell your friends and family you love and appreciate them, this is it!
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