It is Super Bowl Sunday weekend and for the past several years we have hosted a family and old neighbors, who are like family, Super Bowl party in the barn. This year, given that I am trying to be more proactive about showing you all my DIY projects, I decided to start the set up early, mock it up, and then have Maggie take photos to document it all. This way I would not be in the crunch time mode that I am always in, that causes me to rarely document what I am doing. After finishing all the set up and photo taking this evening, I sat smug as a bug in a rug, knowing that I had accomplished my goal and all I had to do to wrap it up was write this post tonight. That rug was wrinkled a little when upon sitting around the table we had worked on all day while eating our usual Friday night pizza, one of the boys asked, “Mom, are we having the party in the house this year?” I responded that no we were not, I had just been setting up what was going to go out in the barn on Sunday so we could write a post for the blog about DIY ideas for the Super Bowl. They all stared at me like I had lost my mind for I NEVER set up something that early. Aidan then asked, “Why did you draw a number line on the brown paper? ” I stared back at him and replied, “That is not a number line, it is a football field.” They all burst out in laughter as they pointed out that a football field stops at the 50 yard line and then counts back down to the 10 yard line. “There is no 70 yard line on a football field mom… duh!” Okay so even though I have four boys and a football obsessed husband, I guess I have not been very observant over the years.
Just kidding, I have watched enough football games in my many years to know that little tidbit of info and when I made the football field on the chalkboard paper earlier in the day, I had certainly stopped at 50.
In trying to wrap up the prep today while fielding a lot of work in the office with Maggie, both of us running back and forth to the barn and working in the kitchen making some of the treats … multitasking was our theme of the day. Obviously we did not do it well. Regardless, you can catch my drift of what I was trying to accomplish. Making a table runner that mimics a football field out of both Kraft paper that everyone has access to or of chalkboard paper was my goal. After realizing that the colors of the teams that would be facing off against each other were navy, orange, a different shade of blue, black and silver, I decided to go neutral while standing in the aisle at Target looking at the colors of the paper products I had assembled. On Sunday, I will add the colors of the teams in with a few balloons with the team names and symbols on them. That way, we are not awash in a clash of colors. Being a visual and not a strong color lover, neutrals come a little easier to my eye. I hope my boys do not ever read this for they will just be rolling their eyes with my comments and the fact that I am focusing in on the colors of the team’s uniforms. Anyway, I ran with the neutrals down my field of black and brown Kraft paper (sorry, could not resist for it is late) and this is what I came up with. I hope that you might be able to incorporate a couple of these ideas into your Super Bowl celebration if you are just planning the day before, like I typically do.
I like to layer things onto a table moving them around as my eye deems what looks right. It really is a trial and error process where I add elements, then take them away, moving them from one side to another. I knew that with the neutrals I wanted to do pops of green for that is the only colored thing that I brought home from Target (a bag of green gum balls). Working with the green, I felt that black would be a good accent color and would work well with the browns of the wooden trays I wanted to use and the Kraft paper. Jumping off from there, pulling all of the accessory items from what I already own as I walked around the house and the barn. I had decided to do a Taco bar as the main entree for I love to do grab and go finger type foods for this particular gathering. I might change it up to a Slider Bar for the actual party but this set up can easily be adapted to that idea as well.
Once I had chosen the colors and the main menu, the decor items had to be assembled. I had pulled this large green glass canister from the barn and thought it would be great inspiration for the main table decor. What to do with it, I pondered. I have this huge stack of Brown Kraft paper so maybe I could cut flags out of them, write on them and then mount on wooden dowels to make flag like banners. Only problem was that I did not have wooden dowels. What to do? Ask your handy dandy son and Ben (Life’s Patina team member) to cut you pieces of whatever scrap wood was in the garage that would act like a dowel. That they did and it was very simple to assemble the flags.
Keep in mind that it is much easier to write on the pieces of paper you have cut first and then glue them on the dowel. I used a hot glue gun and they held nicely.
To secure the flags in the glass vessel, I put a block of florist foam inside that the flags could be secured in so they did not flop about and then covered the foam with some burlap and some wine corks. You can use any vessel that fits into your color scheme and adapt the colors to what works for your eye.
Maggie and I rolled up our sleeves and while we were making the dessert, we decided to make a batch of tacos so that the full effect could be felt when we created the table scape. That way we could also eat lunch once we were finished at the end of the day since we skipped right past it as we tried to fit in everything we had on our To-Do list. In presenting the tacos for the party, I would actually serve the Taco meat and or chicken in crock pots so it stays heated. I would display some of the accompaniments on a wooden tray such as this lined with wax paper or on platters. The rest I put into the same size and style bowls and assembled them on the table.
I have the luxury of working from home most days or in the barn while my husband too, has that luxury every now and then. Today was a now and we both vied for the warmest room in the house due to the fact that he had lit a fire there. He was quite amused or bemused I should say, as we ran about setting up a “fake” party while taking over his “office.” I added some chips in a burlap basket and a scrap piece of chalkboard that was left over from making much larger ones and we had a cute set up for the main eating area.
Can you see why we both wanted to work in this room today?
I felt that we should give another look for the decor by changing out the table runner. I love using the black chalkboard paper so we did another table scape using that as the base but incorporating many of the same elements into the design and using the same colors.
The past two years I have set up a hot chocolate bar mostly to indulge the older “kids” who now attend. This year I am going to do the same but the toppings of the bar are going to echo the colors of the table.
Into assorted canning jars went mini marshmallows, chopped up Andes mints, green M & M’s and white and dark chocolate chips. ( A little tip on where to get the green M & M’s ~ after Christmas, I always buy a couple bags of the Christmas candy that is greatly reduced, M & M’s and Hershey kisses in particular because they are often red and green. What holidays are after Christmas that you could use those candies for at a greater discount? Why Valentine’s Day and St. Patty’s day!)
There are those green gum balls! Poured into a jar, they make a cute decorative item all by themselves. One cannot live by gum balls alone on a dessert table so why not add to it my family’s favorite chocolate covered pretzels and chocolate covered Oreos dipped in toffee bits. These are a simple treat to make that I have highlighted before but here is a little tutorial for those who have not read my prior posts.
~ Assemble whatever you want to dip in chocolate. (pretzel rods, pretzels, Oreos…really anything that tastes good smothered in chocolate
~Spread sheets of wax paper or parchment paper on your work surface
~ Pour half a bag of semi sweet chocolate chips into a disposable heavy duty plastic container and melt the chocolate by heating in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time. Stir after each 30 seconds until chocolate melts. It typically takes around 1 minute to 1 and a half . I use a plastic spoon for I can toss when finished. Be careful to not over heat for it will become hard and stiff.
~ Dip item in chocolate and shake carefully over the bowl to discard food item of extra chocolate.
~ Then dip chocolate covered item into a topping if you so desire.
Lay the finished item on the wax paper to dry
Once dry, assemble on pretty tray…
until you have to reassemble because hubby and boys have dug into the treats causing holes where there used to be the treats.
I found these Perrier bottles at Target after I had picked out the gum balls and they reminded me of the lines on a football field so I picked out a couple, being that we were also of the same hue of the decor. Add some decorative straws in a glass (left over from Christmas) and the table has a little more personality. Other beverages can be added in tin beverage buckets.
I do love to send the guests home with a little memento from a gathering so here sitting on the 60 yard line…had to add that…is a little take home treat although I think I might put some out on Sunday as well. I found this recipe for Super Bowl puppy chow on line. It is super easy to make, so I linked the recipe below from the website, The First Year. Packaged in cute little milk carton boxes, again from the dollar section of Target, they make sweet parting gifts.
As the kids have grown older, they began to actually watch the game so the need for little goodies and trinkets to entertain them began to wane. There are still a couple of young un’s in the ranks so this tradition has not all together been discarded but it has become less of the focus. I still like to have a few goodies on hand to entertain the younger ones and a good place to get football related trinkets and toys is the dollar store or Oriental Trading Company if you are having a large gathering. I lived by the pages of Oriental Trading for the years gone by Birthday parties and school parties of my children. Inexpensive trinkets of any theme can be found there. For this year’s party, I have added football themed candy to the trinkets and I am down to one hand cardboard cut out that I ordered years ago from the above mentioned catalog. I am going to trace the number that I need onto cardboard and cut out my own for the little munchkins who still might find coloring on them “up their alley.”
I hope that your Super Bowl celebrations are filled with good friends and good fun and remember to be a good egg if your team comes out on the losing side. For remember, we are all “supper” eggs! Hmmm…I might turn more of our chicken eggs into footballs and give them out to the guests. What do you think? Will I have laid a big fat one with that move?
Again, my apologies for running away with a play on words. “Chalk” it up to too much chocolate today and the late hour of way, way past midnight that I am penning this post.
Enjoy your festivities even if you are not a football lover for the social gathering and camaraderie that this game induces can be a highlight of your February!
PS~ I will post more photos of the actual celebration afterwards for it will look a little different with some additional elements and some more yummy food items!