December 15, 2019

Surviving the Holiday’s…A Few Tips!

Posted in Holidays tagged , , , , , , , , at 1:00 pm by JBEvents

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I think we can all agree that the Holiday’s, although a joyous time, can also be one of the most stressful times of the year.  We are rushing around and trying to get that “perfect” gift for everyone, trying to bake all of the yummy holiday treats, decorating, entertaining and even hosting guests in our home.  All of that is in addition to your daily tasks which already leave you tired, stressed and rushed.  It’s easy to start feeling like time and money are getting away from you.  It’s also a time of year when everyone should be a little more kind and gentle, but it seems like just the opposite happens.  Tempers flare, anxiety heightens, and for many people this is a time of deep depression.

So what can you do to maintain your sanity and enjoy this special time of the year?  Here are a few tips that will hopefully help you.

  1. Be realistic. The holidays don’t have to be perfect.  You don’t have to have the most decorated house in the neighborhood, throw the best party, give the most gifts, or bake the most cookies.  Sometimes, less can be best.  Determine what activities bring you the most joy, and focus on those.
  2. Set aside differences. Try to accept family members and friends as they are, even if they don’t live up to all of your expectations. Set aside grievances until a more appropriate time for discussion. And be understanding if others get upset or distressed when something goes awry. Chances are they’re feeling the effects of holiday stress and depression, too.
  3. Stick to a budget. Before you go gift and food shopping, decide how much money you can afford to spend. Then stick to your budget. Don’t try to buy happiness with an avalanche of gifts.
  4. Plan ahead. Set aside specific days for shopping, baking, visiting friends and other activities. Plan your menus and then make your shopping list. That’ll help prevent last-minute scrambling to buy forgotten ingredients. And make sure to line up help for party prep and cleanup.
  5. Learn to say no. Saying yes when you should say no can leave you feeling resentful and overwhelmed. Friends and colleagues will understand if you can’t participate in every project or activity.
  6. Don’t abandon healthy habits. Don’t let the holidays become a free-for-all. Overindulgence only adds to your stress and guilt. Moderation is key – enjoy those tasty treats, but don’t go overboard.  Get exercise – even if it’s just walking an extra lap around the store, or even better outside to get some fresh air. 
  7. Take a “ME” moment. Make some time for yourself. Spending just 15 minutes alone, without distractions, may refresh you enough to handle everything you need to do. Find something that reduces stress by clearing your mind, slowing your breathing and restoring inner calm.
  8. Like the song says, Count your Blessings instead of Sheep.  To overcome holiday depression and anxiety, think about the parts of your life that are going well. It can be helpful to list your blessings. When people are stressed and depressed, they tend to focus on the negative things in their lives rather than counting their blessings. There is always something to be thankful for.  I have found that writing down things you are thankful for is a great exercise, because forcing yourself to think of positive things when you are feeling down leads to improving the negative feelings that can consume you.

I hope these tips will help you enjoy the rest of this wonderful season.  My desire for you is that your stress level will decrease and your joy increase, as this truly is the most wonderful time of the year!

Wishing you a Merry Christmas / Happy Hanukkah!

Janice Blackmon Events is an award-winning special event planning company, specializing in creating unique, flawless and fabulous events!  

Credit to Mayo Clinic and psycom for information contained in this post.

November 23, 2015

Thankful…

Posted in Other Events, Planning Tips and Information tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , at 9:35 am by JBEvents

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We all have so much to be Thankful for whether we admit it or not.  As we enter this time of year, I want to pause for a moment and say Thank You to my clients for entrusting their special celebrations to me.  It is such a pleasure bringing my clients vision to life and taking the stress off of them so that they can enjoy the special day without having to worry about the details.  

I am so fortunate to be able to follow my passion for planning events.  Being able to share my expertise to produce flawless events is something I’m extremely thankful for. 

I am also thankful for my vendor (friendors) partners.  Having the assurance that my clients will receive unparalleled quality of service and product from the vendors that I recommend means the world to me.  Having vendors in turn recommend my services to their clients is truly an honor. 

I am thankful for my family!  I have the best brothers in the world and even though we don’t get to be together very often, they are always close in my heart.  My two daughters are a source of joy (most of the time – lol).  It is so amazing to watch them as they have grown into adults each pursuing their own interests.  My Nanababy (aka Grandson) brings me so many reasons to be thankful.  Watching him explore the world with his sense of adventure, love of reading, innate musical ability, and adorable smile, keeps me entertained and full of love everyday.  

My wish and prayer for you all is a peaceful Thanksgiving filled with happiness and love.  Take a moment to stop and reflect on all of the many reasons you have to be Thankful!  

If you need any last minute ideas or inspiration, please visit my Pinterest Board all about Thanksgiving!   

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Janice Blackmon Events is an award-winning event planning company specializing in assisting our clients with innovative concepts, creative design and flawless production of their event.

 

May 24, 2013

A Memorial Day Celebration!!!

Posted in Other Events, Planning Tips and Information tagged , , , , , , , , , , at 10:00 am by JBEvents

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Ahhh, the beginning of summer, Memorial Day weekend.  Our thoughts turn to grilling out, pool parties, lake and beach outings and celebrating with friends as well as remembering those that have lost their lives fighting for our Country!!!

Set the tone for your Memorial Day Party with the invitations.  This vintage looking invitation is cute.

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Decorating with Red, White and Blue can take on many forms.  Whether you use flags placed all around to make the space festive, or you use lanterns, flowers, bandanas for napkins and twinkle lights strung to provide a sparkle and a little light for when the sun goes down – let Patriotic items take precedence in the decor. 

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If you are planning a Memorial Day Party and are still trying to decide what to serve, how about something a little different – Grilled Pizza!!!

Everyone loves pizza and pizza on the grill is delicious!!!  You can choose a variety of toppings to suit the taste of all of your guests.  The pizza cooks pretty quickly and by grilling it, you keep the heat out of the kitchen.  

To round out the meal, perhaps offer a salad and then a yummy dessert.  Some great ideas would be a sheet cake decorated with white icing or whipped cream and topped with red and blue berries to create a flag design.  If you don’t want to decorate a cake, you could opt for cupcakes with berries or even just sprinkles on top.  Another popular idea is homemade ice cream.  

Do as much prep work ahead of time as possible so you can sit back and enjoy the party!!!

You might want to try this Margherita Pizza recipe from Bobby Flay:

Bobby Flay Grilled Margherita Pizza

Ingredients
1 store-bought pizza dough
Olive oil, for brushing and drizzling
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound fresh mozzarella, sliced 1/4-inch thick
3 Roma tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick
Handful fresh basil leaves
Directions
Prepare the grill for direct and indirect cooking.

Once the grill is hot (you can hold your hands an inch over the grates for no more than 2 seconds), stretch and shape the dough into a 12-inch round on a flat surface. Brush the top with oil, salt and pepper and toss on the grill, oil-side down. Cook until the bottom is golden brown, 1 minute. Check the bottom of the dough to see if it is getting browned. If it is on one part, but not the other, use a spatula or tongs to rotate the dough 90 degrees and cook for another minute. If it is still not beginning to brown, cover the grill and continue to cook a minute at a time until the bottom has browned evenly. (It should only take a couple minutes if you have a hot grill.) The top of the pizza dough will also start bubbling up with air pockets.

Once the pizza dough has browned on the bottom, flip over and grill until golden brown and the dough is just firm, another minute or so. Remove to a sheet pan. Cover the grill so it retains the heat for the next step.

Drizzle the top with more olive oil. Put the mozzarella and tomato slices on top and season with salt and pepper. Return the pizza to the grill on the sheet pan, cover the grill and cook for 3 or 4 minutes to melt the cheese. Remove from the grill and tear the basil leaves over the top. Slice and serve immediately.

 
How about a nice refreshing beverage to serve your guests.  I thought about Lemonade and decided a “spiked” version might be just the thing for the big party!

Lemonade with Vodka and Thyme

Vodka-Thyme Lemonade

Ingredients

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 12 sprigs fresh thyme (garnish)
  • 4 cups lemon juice (freshly squeezed, 24 lemons)
  • 2 cups vodka

Directions

  1. In a small saucepan, combine 2 cups water with the sugar and thyme; bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat; let cool to room temperature.
  2. Pour mixture through a fine sieve into a large glass measuring cup; discard thyme. You should have 2 cups syrup. Cover with plastic; chill.
  3. In a large serving pitcher, stir together lemon juice, vodka, and chilled syrup; garnish with thyme. Divide evenly among eight tumblers filled with ice; serve immediately.

 

Now to satisfy that sweet tooth:

Patriotic Cake 2 Flag Cake Patriotic cupcakes patriotic-cake-pops double-flavor-ice-cream-maker Homemade Ice cream

 

However you decide to celebrate, we hope that you will be safe and have a very Happy Memorial Day!!!

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Janice Blackmon Events is an Event Planning company that specializes in producing flawless events of any type and size, anywhere!  

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