No Cook, No Fuss Fourth Of July Party

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. Usually my husband John does most of the cooking (ok, all of the cooking!) and most events leave him stuck in the kitchen most of the day. He doesn’t necessarily mind cooking, but he does get frustrated having to spend the whole day running around- back and forth to the stove, the oven, and the grill while still trying to hang out. Because this is the fate of pretty much every party host since the beginning of time, I decided that I wanted to create a no-cook Fourth of July party. I figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. 

*This post contains affiliate links.

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!
This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

Before we get into the food, let’s talk about the table setup. For starters, I decided that I’m tired of always having crappy disposable plates and cups that are terrible for the environment and always manage to blow away. In addition, everyone always ends up losing their cup and using a whole bunch of extra ones- which makes it even worse for the environment. Because of this, I decided that I was going to use only reusable items and keep the party smaller so that I can have a nice intimate gathering with my guests where we could actually talk instead of spending the entire time trying to cater to a huge group and just spending the whole party cooking. 

Related: Use This, Not That: Eco-Friendly Party Swaps

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

Before I bought any party supplies, I searched my house for appropriate red, white and blue items. First, I grabbed an affordable tablecloth that I had purchased from Amazon. The table runner was from Home Goods and it was perfect for adding a pop of blue to the table. Then I added a red star table runner I had purchased years ago from H&M on top so there’s also a pop of red. On the sides of the table where the runner did not extend, I used reusable napkins as placemats. The red stripe plates were from Target as part of their Hearth & Hand collection and were ideal for adding the perfect nautical touch to the table spread. I used my regular utensils from my dinner set and added a red napkin, folded in half to keep it simple.  Then I scattered some blue tea light holders with battery operated tea lights to add a little light and romance as the sun goes down.

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

Now, onto the Trader Joe’s stuff that I purchased for this party that I’m so excited about! I originally went to Trader Joe’s for only a few items, including flowers and a pie. I managed to find red, white and blue flowers that were only a few dollars each and added a nice touch to the table. When I went to the bakery section, I found a pie which couldn’t be more perfect for the Fourth of July. It’s strawberry rhubarb (YUM) and it has stars on the crust (what?!). I grabbed those two items and continued about my normal shopping trip, when I realized there were so many easy and delicious options that were ready-made that would be perfect for a Fourth of July party. So, I decided that I was going to grab them and I changed this event from just a regular Fourth of July tablescape to a Trader Joe’s easy-to-do party theme. Because let’s be honest, if we can find a great shortcut, we want to do it!

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

I went to the drink section and grabbed some Red Stripe beers and Spiked Seltzer, both of which had a great nautical red, white and blue theme to them. I think one of the best parts about this is that you don’t even need cups, so it’s one less thing to wash, less waste if you’re using plastic cups, and everyone will know which drink is theirs because it’ll just be in front of them or in their hand. Plus, having the option of a beer or a spiked seltzer means that you’ll have something for everyone. They’ve also got great rosés and craft beers if you chose to go that route too. Or to really celebrate the 4th, you could pick an American beer!

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

I decided to keep the food super simple just like everything else. I made a salad with mixed greens, fresh strawberries, blueberries, and feta cheese to keep with that red white and blue theme. You can also add nuts like sliced almonds if you want to! I added Trader Joe’s vinaigrette on the side so that people could serve themselves and the salad wouldn’t get mushy.

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!
This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

I also decided to make a really simple cheese and charcuterie platter since we all love a good cheese! I started by using a goat cheese log covered in blueberries- again, going with the theme.  I served them with bread crisps, which ended up being really good. Usually these types of crackers end up being rock hard and not good (at all) but these were really soft and crispy, the perfect texture to hold the goat cheese and meats. They also work great for avocado toast too! 

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

I picked up a meat platter in the refrigerated section and everything was pre-sliced and ready to go. I personally don’t eat these types of meats (I pretty much just eat chicken and turkey!) but I figured it be great for everyone else to enjoy. Trader Joe’s also has tons of ready-made salads, sandwiches, and pasta salads so you could grab some pre-made meals for your gals. Just place them on a pretty platter and everything’s ready to go with no fuss and no cooking!

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

Aside from the fact that everything so simple to do, Trader Joe’s is actually very affordable and I prefer getting pre-made things from their supermarket over others. For starters, Trader Joe’s is usually smaller than most supermarkets, and I think that’s what makes it better. Instead of wandering the aisles looking at 1 million different brands and getting overwhelmed, you’re able to see everything laid out really nicely and neatly. You know where all the pre-made stuff is and you have a choice of only the best items, so you never have to worry that the things that you purchase are going to be bad for your guests. I also love that they have a great selection of craft beers and that you’re able to mix and match your own set, which is perfect for trying new ones out. 

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!
This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

Ever since baby Hailey came around, I find that I want to keep my events as simple as possible. In the end, it’s all about spending time with friends- having fun and getting to hear about each other’s day. We’ve all become busy and have our own full lives, so we need to take a break from all that to relax and unwind. The opposite of relaxing is spending the whole day cooking for everyone! So, run out to your local Trader Joe’s and grab some pre-made meals for your friends. Then kick back and relax- it’s all been taken care of!

This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!
This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!
This summer, I decided that I’m going to make every celebration as easy as I possibly can. That means less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the outdoors with a drink in hand, laughing with my friends. I decided to create a no cook party spread, and figured where better to start than Trader Joe’s! I’ve been a fan of Trader Joe’s for a while now (and this post is in no way sponsored by them) so I thought it be a great place to go and get some ready-made, delicious, fresh options for a Fourth of July party. Click to see how easy it can be for you, too!

What are your favorite pre-made Trader Joe’s products to serve your guests? Will you be skipping the cooking at your next summer event? Let me know in the comments below!

DIY Watermelon Napkins

Hey guys! I am so excited to announce that I am now a contributor on Giggles Galore! For those of you that haven't heard about Giggles Galore, it's a blog that focuses on making the ordinary EXTRAORDINARY one creative idea at a time. There, you will find holiday crafts, DIY projects, recipes and party tips. Most of the projects can be recreated in less than an hour, and on a budget, so you have more time to create memorable occasions filled with giggles galore. Sounds like a perfect place for me to be!

Summer is Hot-Hot-Hot. It’s filled with BBQ's, picnics, and backyard parties. Oh, and watermelon. Loooots of watermelon! How about adding a pop of color and whimsy to your tables with these awesome watermelon napkins. Click for the DIY! #watermelon #summercrafts #napkinsdiy

My first project? DIY Watermelon Napkins! Besides watermelon being the absolute best summer fruit, August 3 is National Watermelon Day. I foresee a whooooole lot of watermelon flavored drinks being consumed that day! And everyone will need some of these napkins to go along with them. In case you haven't noticed, I'm a sucker for a theme.

Summer is Hot-Hot-Hot. It’s filled with BBQ's, picnics, and backyard parties. Oh, and watermelon. Loooots of watermelon! How about adding a pop of color and whimsy to your tables with these awesome watermelon napkins. Click for the DIY! #watermelon #summercrafts #napkinsdiy

For the full tutorial, as well as some tips on using RIT dye, head over to Giggles Galore! You can find the post here. Be sure to show Mariah some love by leaving comments and following her on instagram so you never miss a post!

Summer is Hot-Hot-Hot. It’s filled with BBQ's, picnics, and backyard parties. Oh, and watermelon. Loooots of watermelon! How about adding a pop of color and whimsy to your tables with these awesome watermelon napkins. Click for the DIY! #watermelon #summercrafts #napkinsdiy

Will these napkins be making their debut at your next BBQ? I think they should- they're one in a MELON. Get it?! 

Nautical Notecard Birthday Banner Tutorial

This weekend, I went into Michaels on a mission to find some cute party supplies and projects. When I saw these ADORABLE note cards in their dollar section, I couldn't resist getting them! They're part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer. I made them into a birthday banner that can also double for Independence Day, and can be kept up all summer long. This is a quick and easy DIY you can make in just minutes, for only $6! Any note cards can be used for this tutorial, but I think you should run on over to Michael's and grab a set of these before they run out!

*Contains affiliate links

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.
Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

How cute are these cards on their own as well?! Each pack comes with 5 cards of the same design, so even after you've made your banner, you can send some fun notes to your friends or use them as invitations. And the best part? Each pack is only $1.50!

And now, onto the directions!

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

For this project, you'll need:
Notecards (similar here)
Paper Cutter (similar here)
Scissors (here)
Ribbon or Twine (here)
3-Hole Punch (here)
Shaped Paper Punches (similar here)
Tape

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.
Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

Step 1: Unfold your note card and cut off the back, making sure to cut before the fold to create a nice smooth surface. I prefer to use a paper cutter for this instead of scissors to ensure a straight line.

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.
Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

Step 2: Take the back of the card and cut off the excess paper around the drawing, making sure to leave enough of a border to create an even circle.

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

Step 3: Using your round paper punch, center the drawing and cut it out. I used a 2-inch circle punch for this.

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

Step 4: Using a handheld hole punch, make a small hole at the top of your circular drawings. If you don't have a handheld one, use your 3-hole punch. Just be sure to remove the hole "catcher" if yours has one so that you can flip it over to center the hole.

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

Step 5: Let's get back to the front of the card. Using your 3-hole punch, line up the card to make two even holes. Repeat for all the cards.

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

Step 6: Weave the notecards onto the ribbon, passing the string through the back to create a clean design in the front. Alternate between the circular drawings and the notecards in an appealing pattern.

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

BONUS: If you want to get even more fun out of your cards, punch some small circles and stars out of the back of the cards and tape them onto twine for a playful garland!

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.
Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

And that, mateys, is how you make an awesome nautical birthday banner for only $6!

Part nautical, part 4th of July, and 100% perfect for summer, this quick and easy DIY can be made in just minutes! Click to find out how we crafted this banner with just $6 and some note cards.

Hung up on the need for more banner tutorials? Be sure to check out my Garlands and Banners board on Pinterest!

How do you plan to use your banner? Tag me in your Instagram photos!

Fourth of July on a Budget

I am so excited that it's officially summer! The hot weather, longer days, and endless BBQ's are making me a happy gal! Now that we (finally) have a yard, I have been doing a lot of hosting. This can get super expensive, especially when you factor in all the decorations and food. I decided to do 4th of July on a budget so I could avoid a red white and boohoo, if you know what I mean!

You can still have a lot of style without spending big bucks! Almost everything here came from the Dollar Tree and Target's dollar section.

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An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

This table runner is actually a scarf from the dollar section! I added a sequin table runner underneath for a little extra sparkle.

An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

I purchased the chevron jar from Target as well ($3) and filled it with paper straws (8 for $1). The glittery star picks are from A.C. Moore.

An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

I purchased my striped plates and star napkins from Target's dollar section, and the blue foil star napkins are from the Christmas Tree Shop. I gave each place setting a fun pen, which was only a dollar each!

An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

These foil star plates came 8 for $1- a great deal! And how cute are those octopus beer mugs?! They're from the Christmas Tree Shop and only cost a couple of dollars.

An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

For snacks, I got Mike and Ike candies in red, white and blue for only $1. I added nautical cupcake picks I got from the Christmas tree shop ($3 for 24) and put them in these cute shooter glasses (4 for $1)

An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

These red, white and blue cupcakes from Target are so cute and tasty! They're perfectly patriotic.

An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.
An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

These pail votive holders from the Dollar Tree made adorable vases.  Just put a small cup of water inside so your flowers don't wilt in the heat.

An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

I got these paper fans from the dollar tree as well, 2 for $1! 

An EASY and affordable Fourth of July table featuring items from Target and the dollar tree! Check out the post for all the details.

All in all, this July 4th tablescape cost about $50. Not too shabby!

Breakdown:
Sweets & Treats: $15
Flowers/Decor: $20
Tableware: $15

Want more ideas? Check out my Fourth of July Pinterest board!