About a month ago, I got a call from Clara Ole inviting me to participate in their Potluck Foodfest series and it came at such a perfect time! I was really planning to host a little party at our condo to celebrate my husband’s birthday and figured it would be cool to include our close friend Bernice in the celebration too because her birthday falls on the same month as well. Bernice is one of Patrick’s closest childhood friends and has become a dear girlfriend to me as well. She’s always the one taking the lead in planning all of our barkada’s celebrations from birthdays, baby and bridal showers to weddings. So this time we wanted to give back to Bernice and spoil her with lots of love and affection, just as she has always spoiled all of us 🙂
So for this little celebration, it was great to collaborate with Clara Ole and also my friend, Bing Avendano. Bing is a genius in the kitchen, she makes the best home cooked comfort dishes! When I was at my first trimester and my food cravings were at all time high—she prepared Spaghetti, Turon, Korean Beef Stew, Cuban Corn and all these yummy treats for me. She has blessed me so much with her cooking and I knew I just had to tap her for this party as well. So Bing and I came up with YUMMY but easy to prepare dishes using Clara Ole products for this Potluck party. I was so delighted to get ALL the help I could possibly receive for this event, especially since at 32 weeks my pregnant self is much slower and heavier. I’ll share all the easy recipes of Bing in the next post–all budget friendly, convenient to make, and not at all intimidating. Believe me, I am NOT at all a Martha Stewart in the kitchen so I would know. Hahaha! It also helps I guess that Clara Ole has a wide range of versatile sauces and mixes that saves you a lot of time in the kitchen. When you’re VERY preggy like me, it’s best to go for convenience! The less stress, the better—-especially in this HEAT!!! Hehehe 🙂
A special shout out goes to SWELL SWEETS for the cake and cupcakes and to SPUD BUDS for their delicious potato products!!! Our guests went gaga over their potato balls, potato skins, and fries. All so carb heavy and SARAP! You can book them for private parties and gatherings or drop by their kiosk in Mall of Asia. 🙂 You can reach them at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Before I close this post, I wanted to give a few tips on Party Planning Life Hacks that you might find useful for your next occasion 🙂
1. Work with your budget
You don’t have to go broke just to celebrate a milestone. With a bit of creativity and resourcefulness, you can come up with a beautiful celebration without burning a hole in your wallet. Peg your a realistic budget (with a bit of wiggle room) and stay true to it!
2. Don’t be afraid to ask help from your friends
In line with #1, it’ll be good to ask for assistance from your pals. Instead of renting chairs/tables, maybe you can just borrow from your neighbor? For props and decors, maybe you can rework the ones your friends used for their previous parties? I was VERY pregnant when I was planning this so I knew the only way for me to execute it properly was to seek help from friends and ask them to chip in with the preparations. It also is a great way to bond with your buddies 🙂
3. Cook Smart with Clara Ole
Be one step ahead in your party preps by using Clara Ole! The products are sure hassle-proof so no need to stress out on the meal-planning and cooking. You may check out their FB, IG and Pinterest accounts for some easy to prepare recipes which she you could share. https://www.pinterest.com/claraoleph/recipes-to-make/https://www.facebook.com/myclaraole?fref=ts
4. Think of Easy Ice Breakers/Games
Don’t overcomplicate your games! Just keep it light and simple, so it won’t be too intimidating for guests to join. Group games with simple mechanics like Pinoy Henyo, Musical Chairs, or Relays are always best and can make for funny photos too.
5. Have FUN!
Sometimes we get so engrossed with all the little details that we forget to just let our hair down and enjoy the party. These milestones only come once in a blue moon so just enjoy every moment. Your guests don’t expect everything to be perfect anyway, as long as there’s a lot of LOVE and THOUGHT poured into each detail–that’s more than enough 🙂