fourth of july fest

In ALL, ENTERTAINING by Stephanie Klein9 Comments

You could pretty much add “fest” to anything and make it sound like a good time. Pickin’ up dog shit fest. See? Except here the fest bit is redundant because it’s always a good time on the 4th. Even if you lose a finger. Blowing up fireworks and my hand fest. Still works.

Fourth of July might be my favorite holiday. Well, wait. No. Then I think about Thanksgiving and the Christmas music, and I waffle. Fact is, I like any and all holidays that revolve around food. Even if they don’t, I tend to make them about food, and crafts, and coordinating bath soaps. Because dammit, it brings me joy. I love spending these holidays with people who “get it.”

july fourth food

People who thrill in almost the same way I do, in the smaller things, like custom packaging for your sparklers, place cards, and coordinating drink umbrellas. Mind you, I never get it all done, but I have fun trying.

This year I made the mistake of berry tiramisu. Blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, a scant cup of strawberries, lovely ladyfingers, mascarpone cheese, lemon curd. All I can really say is that the tiramisu gave me the ladyfinger but good. The damn mascarpone curdles, almost immediately, when whipped with cream. There was a warning in the recipe not to over whip, to make sure the cream and mascarpone were both room temperature. I did as I was told, and still, fine fine curds formed, no emulsion. It was fcuked. I was fcuked. In lieu of the berry disaster, I had chocolate chip cookies with vanilla bean and mocha java chip ice creams for homemade ice cream sandwiches. And for the kids, I froze bananas on sticks, let them each dip them in chocolate, then decorate their pops as they liked. They liked.

outdoor living

All I’m sayin’ is, if we’re throwing them a birthday party this year, I’d better get started on my invitations, napkin rings, goodie bags, table centerpieces now, in July, for a December party. Because that’s how much time I’ll need to do it up the way I’d like them to have it. I’m thinking vintage circus theme because I’m not sure how to successfully throw a princess & the train party. Not without a gag and rope. One thing’s for sure, all soft Italian cheeses will be denied access.


  1. We did a circus party when my daughter turned 3 (she wanted dumbo as a theme, so I went from there). it was pretty lovely. We had cotton candy, popcorn, peanuts, etc…hired a balloon artist & face painter. The kids all had a great time and it’s definitely easier/more enjoyable than the princess party we had the next year…

  2. i get it! during the christmas/holiday season, i have a santa handsoap dispenser and matching hand towels for the guest bathroom. not to mention coordinating, seasonal kitchen towels hanging from my oven handle. there’s more, but i’ll spare you the details. besides…you already know, cuz you GET IT.

    ps. i’ve read your books and i’ve been “blog stalking” you forEVER…this is my first time commenting. i’m a fellow redhead! and have wished for years that i could write like you. you are a huge inspiration to me. thank you. you’re the reason i started blogging! although, i blog about fashion. okay…enough of my rambling.

  3. That corn looks delicious!! Where did you get the white platter with the stars? I love it :)

  4. You must try that basil infused lemonade with a shot of gin…my go to drink last summer when the basil went crazy in my garden! Looks like you had a fantastic time!

  5. I totally get it. I’m the same way with party planning. Next weekend my partner and I are hosting a “forever young” themed party to celebrate our 30-something bdays. We’ll have a photo booth, pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey and little labels for every morsel of food. So much fun to plan and everyone truly does seem to notice and appreciate the details. Your basil-infused lemonade sounds fantastic; I just can’t stand squeezing all the lemons!

  6. I’ve had the same problem with berry tiramisu and with these mascarpone strawberry cupcakes I love to make. But it’s been erratic and I can’t figure out why it curdles one time and then doesn’t another…

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