I take my birthdays pretty seriously. So seriously, they can actually be pretty stressful in the weeks leading up. I am always torn between wanting to surround myself with as many people who I love as possible, and wanting to spend meaningful time with each and every one of them. I have tried to solve this dilemma in the past by taking my birthday celebrations to the next level. A couple of years ago, I organized a linocut crafternoon, where everyone learned how to create a linocut print. I gathered all of the materials, set up work stations, instructed everyone, and also put together an awesome taco bar (with immense help from J, of course). The next year I organized a ceramics painting crafternoon. Unfortunately, I was too wiped out afterwards to get around to writing a blog post…. But for that party I also purchased the supplies — Pebeo porcelain paints, a variety of ceramics, paintbrushes, etc. — and spent the afternoon painting with some of my best friends. J and I also perfected an incredible pork belly bao recipe, which we served in a massive, excellent make-your-own-bao bar. Add that to the list of belated blog posts…
This year, instead of a crafternoon, I decided to get people involved with a potluck of sorts. I put together a Sangria-off, where everyone was asked to bring a pitcher of homemade sangria to enter into a blind tasting competition. There were scorecards. There were awards. There was a homemade photo booth! And of course, there was a TON of food.
Twenty-five of some of my best friends packed into our small studio apartment. It was sweaty but the sangria flowed like water (nine pitchers!) and I had such a wonderful time.
I won’t lie, a lot of preparation went into this, with multiple grocery trips and a menu planned with the help of J (as well as a lot of the cooking and prep work). I designed the score cards and mini-awards, which I printed on 4×6 unlined index cards (see links at the bottom of the post). I also spent a few days making the paper flowers for the decor and photobooth backdrop. In the end, it was more than worth it! Fingers crossed I’ll get around to a DIY paper flower tutorial soon but until then you can check out my inspiration Pinterest board full of DIY instructions on how to make crepe and tissue paper flowers.
Follow this link to download the Sangria-Off Scorecard (it should look like the image below). The file is a word document you can print 4 x 6 inch notecards.
To create your own Sangria-Off Awards and/or Superlatives, use this Printable Certificate of Achievement. I printed on blank 4 x 6 inch notecards.