Four Course Summer Dinner Party

Four Course Summer Dinner Party
Honestly, I’m drooling even as I write this post.
Last night I had a BLAST.
There was yummy food.
There was tear induced laughter.
There was even a choking incident on a giblet of corn–you know when you are enjoying your food a bit too much and you inhale deeply before completely chewing…and a large chunk of food seems to impale the back of your throat, and soon after embeds into your lung…
yeah, that happened to my dear friend last night.
It was good times.
I was invited to join a dinner party group–called Karrot Sticks.
Basically, it’s a group of 10 super rad and bodacious ladies that leave the kiddos home for one evening every month to enjoy some fine dining in the comfort of a hosts beautiful home. 
We divide into groups of two, and every month one group is responsible for creating and hosting a 4-course meal–appetizer, soup or salad, entree and dessert.  You even get to pick a theme.
Last nights theme was “Welcome Summer”.
And it turns out, I’m quite a fan of summer food.
 ~ The Menu ~
Appetizer: Pomegranate Spritzers, Prosciutto Cantaloupe Bites
Salad: Tomato & Watermelon Salad
Main: Mar-a-Lago Turkey burger with Mar-a-Lago Pear Chutney, Sweet Potato Fries with Sour Cream Dipping Sauce, Grilled Corn
Dessert: Blueberry-Plum crisp with Homemade Vanilla Bean Ice Cream.
You know you’re enjoying your night out when the sun is up when you arrive, and down when you leave.
And just as a reminder that all things beautiful, take lots of hard work.
Thank you, thank you to Amy and Nicki for hosting such a fabulous evening.
My partner Brittney and I are up in August, and we still need to come up with a theme and menu…
any ideas?

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  • Reply
    Barn Owl Primitives
    June 24, 2011 at 11:18 pm

    how fun! i'm so doing this…minus the corn incident, i hope! thanks for the beautiful photos and inspiration!! xo

  • Reply
    Cherry Blossoms
    June 24, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    Yum and this dinner party is beyond beautiful! I wish I had the backyard space to host a lovely party like this.
    By any chance can you share the recipes? The tomato watermelon salad looks amazing.
    Enjoy your weekend!

  • Reply
    Lindsey @ Confessions Of A Marine Wife
    June 24, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    Oh my gosh, Ashley! That is such a good idea, especially upon moving to a new place (which be both just did!)

    That food all looks so yummy. :]

  • Reply
    June 24, 2011 at 11:23 pm

    August is the month Hawaii became a state. Maybe a luau?

  • Reply
    Trisha @ 3 Four and Under
    June 24, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    Looks like so much fun! How do you know all those ladies from the Agoura 2nd Ward? I know all of them.

  • Reply
    Kassi @ Truly Lovely
    June 24, 2011 at 11:37 pm

    That sounds like a BLAST!!! 🙂 You could do Late Summer Heat and serve spicy food!

  • Reply
    June 24, 2011 at 11:55 pm

    Sounds fun! I'm a new follower!

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 12:07 am

    This is SO adorable!! Maybe when I'm all grown up and the hubs and I can move out of married student housing and into a house-I'll be able to do something like this! Until then-I can only dream and live through you!


  • Reply
    jamie @ kreyv
    June 25, 2011 at 12:09 am

    Wow! So yummy and beautiful! I think you should do a beach theme, because you remind me of the beach! I think the decor would be really easy and beautiful…as for the food, not sure. I've never lived by the beach!

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 12:23 am

    I have no earthly idea, however, I do know that I really want a chunk out of that ice cream.

  • Reply
    Audrey Crisp
    June 25, 2011 at 12:26 am

    How fun! That party looks amazing!

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 12:41 am

    Love the menu! Everything looks delicious!

    I am part of a supper club too, the hubs and I meet with three other couples, once each season ~ we are in charge of the summer menu! i almost put that salad on the menu too, but went with a grilled watermelon salad instead…should be interesting! I got some nice decor ideas for mine from yours though, thank you!

    As far as your menu for August, I could email you the summer menu that we put together if you want me too?! I have all of the links already on an email, as I have to print them all out and give to the other members of my club anyway, as we do ours a little different! You can read about it here:


    on it you will find our spring menu and links to fall and winter if you wanted even more ideas!

    i love meeting with other married couples – kids have to stay with a babysitter – but i love the idea of a ladies supper club too! just might have to start this up!

  • Reply
    Raige Creations
    June 25, 2011 at 12:51 am

    that sounds so awesome, and what beautiful decorations!
    I love mexican food, so fajitas, guacamole, fried ice cream, etc. would be my suggestion. tho, I am not sure how to make fried ice cream…..

  • Reply
    ilene @ muchloveilly
    June 25, 2011 at 12:52 am

    im in a party mood now – esp. after these photos! inspiring!!!

  • Reply
    ilene @ muchloveilly
    June 25, 2011 at 12:52 am

    im in a party mood now – esp. after these photos! inspiring!!!

  • Reply
    kadie dahl
    June 25, 2011 at 1:04 am

    In August we have the state fair. Maybe go with a fair themed party! How fun would that be?!

    Come check my blog out at:

  • Reply
    brooke field
    June 25, 2011 at 1:15 am

    that is an amazing idea!

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 1:40 am

    Just breathtaking!! What a gorgeous dinner party 🙂

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 1:44 am

    The tablescape and lights are gorgeous! And the food? Yum! Everything looks sooo delicious! How fun!

    amy day to day

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 1:59 am

    Looks like a beautiful night. I'm thinking I need to start something like this up here.

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 2:07 am

    how fun!!! it makes me want to join a dinner party group! maybe one day. lovee the set up!

  • Reply
    The Zeediks
    June 25, 2011 at 2:14 am

    Great post Ash. I was laughing while reading and my mouth was watering all over again! It was truly sensational! The blog where we post all the recipes is karrotsticks.blogspot.com
    LOVE that you asked for ideas. When Halle's down I'll be looking up some of those links!
    Great writing as always 🙂

  • Reply
    Erin @ MomsHaveStyle2
    June 25, 2011 at 2:35 am

    So after reading your post, while on our nightly post-dinner stroll, I rambled on and on to my husband about the party and how beautiful the setting and all the accoutrements were and how that's the kind of entertaining I envision, too. We love to throw parties with themes (wine and cheese, mediterranean night, low-country shrimp boils…I could go on. I really hope you'll pass on to your hostesses just how gorgeous this setting was and that it inspired me to go forth and celebrate!

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    June 25, 2011 at 2:52 am

    I love this idea! It looks like so much fun!

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 3:12 am

    Ok this looks AMAZING! Where do I sign up? 🙂

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 3:27 am

    Love your blog! Everything looked so yummy! Can you tell me about the table runners? Did you make them? I love that flower fabric.

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 5:05 am

    I'm all for the dessert. I love the little dishes. Amy, and
    Niki did a great job.


  • Reply
    Talia Rogers, MBA, PBC™ of Luxe. Event Design, LLC
    June 25, 2011 at 5:18 am

    This is so lovely! I know you all had great fun! Wonderful!

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 5:36 am

    This posts makes me happy! It reminds me of a Barefoot Contessa episode, and makes me want to experiment in the kitchen =) I'm a pretty new follower and am being brave to comment…thanks for a great read. You are InsPirAtiOnaL!


  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 7:55 am

    what a good idea. gives you a reason to get fancy and go have some fun 🙂 it looks awesome

  • Reply
    james @ agirlcalledjames
    June 25, 2011 at 11:26 am

    Wow everything looks amazing. I'm glad you were able to get out and have some adult time with friends.

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 11:47 am

    A luau with Hawaiian or Polynesian food would be awesome!

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    Oohhh, I miss California! This reminds me of my insanely-awesome baby shower. I love that you're doing this – maybe I'll steal the idea!

  • Reply
    Amanda @ Ninth Street Notions
    June 25, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    Looks delicious! I need to start me a dinner party club.

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 11:21 pm

    You should have a Caribbean Night filled w/ piña coladas, jerk chicken and island music. Ah, I want to do this myself! B)

  • Reply
    June 25, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    Love the idea of "Late Summer Heat" someone mentioned! BUT I love the "Fair food" idea even more…it got my mind running! You would do a gourmet twist on it. I don't know why but lamb skewers wrapped in phyllo dough and baked to be your fancy corn dog. OH but I bet you could do some type of Mexican polenta type batter on something. YUM…plus frying is more tasty : )

    My mind if also reeling around funnel cakes and cotton candy : ) HA…and I don't even go to fairs or eat fair food…but it sounds like such a fun idea!!

    Have a blast and I hope what ever you decide on makes the party!


  • Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 12:12 am

    This is such a good idea! I am drooling over that food!

  • Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 2:33 am

    Looks like an amazing time! I think I need to look into starting something like this!

    For your next theme you could do Hot Summer Nights, Luau, or All Work and No Play since August is typically back to school and routines for some people.

  • Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 6:25 am

    This was such a beautiful post about our wonderful night. Welcome to the club! Thank you for taking gorgeous pictures, as we never remember too. Now my husband can see what we were doing. Love your blog and your cute shop – the jewelry is creative and adorable. Can't wait to get to know you better.
    ps – I love that everyone is talking about fair food, just like we talked about! chocolate covered bacon and fried butter, right?

  • Reply
    Comeca Jones
    June 26, 2011 at 7:32 am

    Beautiful! Looks like you guys stepped in a really cool Pinterest photo lol.

  • Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    Just blogging around this morning and found your blog. Your dinner party sounds like so much fun. You've done a great job with your page.
    I'd like to invite you to my blog give away. I am giving away a packet of coupons. I am new at entering giveaways no less giving one, but I'm giving it a try.
    Thanks for letting me visit.

  • Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 7:53 pm

    I was thinking of suggestions and I think my most memorable dinner party (we have a dinner club) and I think the most memorable one was when we did an Indian themed one. Not only was the food delicious, but the decorations are easy and so beautiful. Esp. if you host outside.

  • Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 9:37 pm

    I saw your comment on my friend Nicki L.'s blog and I looked at your blog. I love Mom's who are so dedicated to being a Mom like you are!! I love how you actually play with your son all the time! I completely identify with your sentiments because I am a mom of one spirited son. I have to tell you about one book among others that changed how I parent…Raising Your Spirited Child by Mary Sheedy Kurcinka. You might like it. It helped me to understand my son's ideosynchracies and feel better about catering to them. My neglected website is parentspeace.com. I am now a follower of yours!! Thank you!!

  • Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 10:56 pm

    That is such a great idea. It looks like so much fun.

  • Reply
    June 27, 2011 at 2:46 am

    what a crazy awesome party! i just threw a craft party myself – it was super fun. a vintage party is my next idea maybe u could do something like that

  • Reply
    June 27, 2011 at 3:59 am

    You are absolutely adorable Ashley and thank you for taking such great pictures of our dinner party! I'll send you an email so I can get those pictures, I would love to blog about the night as well. I'm so glad that you accepted Brittney's invitation to be in the club… I'm looking forward to your dinner in August. You already have some great suggestions right here from your readers!

    See you in July! xoxo

  • Reply
    June 27, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    August is back to school month in most states. You could do upscale brown bag lunches???

  • Reply
    June 27, 2011 at 4:34 pm

    oooo upscale brown bag lag i was thinking of a school theme to but that's goooood… or a lunch room theme using the old school trays we had… or I personally would love to be eating your Mexican food!! YUMMERS!!
    Have a Salsa night playing music margaritas and mexican num.num.

  • Reply
    June 27, 2011 at 6:16 pm

    wow I love those! also, consider me your very newest follower, i just found your cute little blog 🙂

  • Reply
    June 27, 2011 at 6:17 pm

    ooops i commented on the wrong post 🙂 pretend that comment is on the one with the silver beauties. kthanks. bye.

  • Reply
    Witty Whit
    June 28, 2011 at 2:19 am

    What a great idea! I love girls night and will have to remember this when I have kids 🙂

  • Reply
    Lexie Loo & Dylan Too
    June 28, 2011 at 6:32 pm

    That sounds wonderful! What a fun idea!

  • Reply
    Lexie Loo & Dylan Too
    June 28, 2011 at 6:32 pm

    That sounds wonderful! What a fun idea!

  • Reply
    An Irish Italian Blessing
    June 28, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    WOW! Fabulous party. How or where can I find the recipe for that Tomato Watermelon Salad! I'm searching the web but not finding anything good. Any chance you could post a recipe?

  • Reply
    June 29, 2011 at 8:58 pm

    I love the Heartstrngs Necklace!

  • Reply
    [email protected] THAT'S SO CUEGLY
    June 30, 2011 at 7:26 pm

    Have a FOND of U fondu party!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2011 at 2:43 am

    Oh, how lovely!

  • Reply
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    August 23, 2011 at 4:39 pm

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    Farmers Market Dinner Party Part 1 - Little Miss Momma
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    […] I went to where said friend choked on a giblet of corn? You can read about our enchanting evening here. Well, this month it was our turn to host and prepare the meal. And Brittney and I were pretty […]

  • Reply
    March 14, 2012 at 12:49 am

    I love this whole party idea! And specifically the table runners. Do you know where they were purchased? I’d love something similar for my upcoming dinner party. Thanks

  • Reply
    Stan Hamann
    May 20, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    Sounds like a wonderful summer dinner menu. Thanks for sharing. I may have missed it on your site but can you share your recipes esp for the Watermelon and tomato salad and the Blueberry Crisp?
    Thank you.

  • Reply
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