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Thursday, February 4, 2010

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape

We had a very special day yesterday-my beautiful "baby" boy turned 10!!!

Beach Themed Tablescape


Big Al  is a real "outdoor" kid and loves playing sport!

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz
 


He loves his new Powerwing thingy....


A boy is Truth with dirt on it's face,

Beauty with a cut on its finger,
Wisdom with bubble gum in its hair,
and the Hope of the future with a frog in its pocket.

Author Unknown

And he loves going to the beach.

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz, beach

He also loves to party so we had a little party at home to celebrate. Both sets of grandparents came and so did his great Aunt.

His favourite food is pasta so we had spaghetti bolognese for dinner. I used the recipe that I posted the other day as a starting point and then added a few extra ingredients.

First I fried up some pancetta, onion, garlic, chopped celery and capsicum (red pepper) with some olive oil.

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz, Pasta

I then added some mushrooms and some fresh basil and oregano.

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz, Pasta Recipe

Look at these yummy fresh herbs from my parent's garden!

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz, Pasta Recipe

I forgot to take some more pictures after this stage (oops) but I added some minced pork and lamb (instead of beef) and I also added some grated carrot and courgettes (had to try to sneak in some vegetables!) I know the recipe calls for beef but my kids love the combination of pork and lamb in bolognese sauce. I also added the 2 cups of red wine that the recipe called for and I added some Barilla pasta sauce. I then added my 2 secret ingredients...don't tell anyone that I am telling you this but the 2 things that make my pasta sauce "sing" are.... 1 tablespoon of sugar and 2 teaspoons of granulated instant coffee. If you haven't already tried these "secret" ingredients in your bolognese sauce I really suggest that you do!

I cooked everything over a low heat (adding water when it looked a bit dry) for about 3 hours.

That gave me time to set a beach themed tablescape.

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz


We had to fit quite a few people around the table so there wasn't much room to set an ornately decorated table.

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz


I placed a Maxwell and Williams square bowl on a seashell serviette and a Maxwell and Williams side plate.


Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz


Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz

I used our Strachan silverware.....

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz

and I used lots of seashells for a beach themed tablescape!

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz

Now for a bit of "Show and Tell'....Do you like my little seashell/candle tray?

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Candles


I was inspired by the beautiful tray that Cindy has on her divine blog My Romantic Home so I made one too!

 Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz

I served the pasta "family style" with a green salad and some cheese bread.

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz
  
The birthday cake was a white chocolate mudcake (recipe from the great foodie blog Exclusively Food found here) and to continue the beach theme it was decorated with Guylian seashell chocolates.

Beach Themed Party & Tablescape, Natasha in Oz, cake


All-in-all it was a lovely evening and I am pretty sure that Big Al had a good day. 

Happy double-digit birthday my handsome son! 

Thank you  for visiting today and for helping me celebrate my son's birthday-I am so glad that I can share these special moments with my very special friends!

Best wishes always,
Natasha In Oz 
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