milk and cookies party in pink and white at Christmas
Milk and Cookies

A Milk and Cookies Party is one of the easiest and most fun ways to host a party during the holidays! This idea can be adapted to be a cookie exchange or a “Sweet Shoppe” party- and it is suitable for a range of ages. I am sharing ideas below to help you celebrate the season and to be able to keep it as simple as milk and cookies…or you can always make it as elaborate as you want to make it!

milk and cookies party in pink and white at Christmas
Milk and Cookies Party by Lydia Menzies at The Party Wagon

You could keep this get-together very low-key and simply and literally serve milk and cookies. Let the kids enjoy a game of Holiday Bingo, watch a holiday show or movie, or decorate sugar cookies. If you really want it to be a causal affair, invite your guests to wear their favorite holiday pajamas. I would suggest offering a few savory snack ideas to balance the sweet flavors that you have with the cookies. Serve milk in old-fashioned milk bottles with beautiful labels and paper straws for the prettiest presentation…

milk and cookies party milk bottles decorated for christmas

If you prefer to take the party up a notch, I would suggest preparing for a cookie exchange, setting up a cookie decorating station, and/or maybe even inviting Santa and Mrs. Claus to the party for photos. Encourage your guests to wear festive holiday attire and give everyone a chance to dress up in their Christmas best. Be prepared with aprons for the little ones if they are handling colored icing and candies. Teenage helpers dressed as elves could also add some fun to the get-together!

Whether you decide to go casual or fancy for your party, set the tone for your guests by having a small display of sweets ready when they arrive.

Sweet Shop Sign for milk and cookie holiday party

I especially like the Sweet Holiday paper collection by Loralee Lewis for dressing up the cookie table. The welcome sign has the cutest gingerbread kids depicted along with the gorgeous graphic design and shape. I placed the sign on a plate stand in the center of the table and then displayed beautiful cookies around the sign.

gingerbread decorated sugar cookies

Decorated cookies are always nice to have as a special treat for your guests or for individual party favors. For this party idea, I decided to order sugar cookies decorated as gingerbread men to match the cute gingerbread kids in the paper designs. It would be fun to have gingerbread cookies ready to decorate at the party. This would be the perfect activity for your guests. You could use sugar cookies or gingerbread cookies- whichever you prefer to make (or order). Use cupcake liners, candy cups, or muffin tins to help organize the cookie decorating materials. Roll out a strip of wrapping paper or craft paper to help protect the table and to make clean up easy. Add frosting to piping bags ahead of time- or use zip bags with a small hole snipped at one corner. Your guests will have fun trying their hand at decorating like the pros- and (if they are anything like I am) will have an even bigger appreciation for all cookie decorators! 🙂

milk and cookies gingerbread men on banner and cookies

If you are hosting a cookie exchange party, I think it is a great idea to have some special, decorated cookies for the kids to eat while they trade cookies with each other. For a cookie exchange, invite each guest to bake and bring a few dozen cookies to share. On a large table or kitchen island, set out each set of cookies with the recipe beside the cookies. Be sure to have a bakery box, gable box, or cookie tin available for each guest to fill with a variety of cookies to take home. A cookie exchange is great because it serves as an activity and a party favor, all in one! 🙂 If the party is not too large, you can also offer the recipe for each cookie that was made with the name of the guest who contributed the recipe. This is a fun way to share your favorite family recipes! I always love leaving a party with a new favorite recipe to try (and, as a side note, Loralee’s Sweet Shoppe Collection includes a set of recipe cards that can be used just for this reason). Another little tip…consider having photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus and let the little ones chat with them during the party. A fireside chat and photo opportunity can make for really cute memories! In the past, I have also asked my children’s music teachers if they will play the piano and lead a sing-a-long at parties. This is so much fun for everyone and is a great way to end a party on a literal high note!

sweet shop milk and cookies party display

If you prefer to host a party that includes more than cookies, a Holiday Sweet Shoppe theme is really cute and fun! You can still incorporate many of the ideas above, but add in a variety of treats that you will serve. Just remember that you may want to also serve light sandwiches or finger foods and water for the children to enjoy along with the sweets.

milk and cookies party with cupcakes

A Sweet Shoppe theme opens up the dessert table to a host of ideas. Cupcakes are always a hit and look extra cute with adorable gingerbread boys and girls. I love serving cupcakes with toppers because they are easy to make or buy and look so pretty with a cupcake wrapper and rosette topper. Minimal effort with maximum effect! And, then cookies ordered from Bambella Cookies always fall into that category for me, too! 🙂

milk and cookies party with sweet shop sign
milk and cookies with decorated cookies and glass bottles

Another easy way to add a sweet treat to your Sweet Shoppe party without a lot of fuss, is to order doughnuts and embellish them. I ordered these doughnuts from Dunkin Doughnuts and added wreath icing toppers made by A Party Made Perfect. Place them on a festive plate, add a colorful napkin, and let them shine! Your guests will love these!

milk and cookies and doughnuts with wreaths

Aren’t those so pretty? I love the simplicity of the pink iced doughnut topped with the pretty green royal icing wreath…

pink doughnuts with green icing wreaths
milk and cookies with donuts and royal icing green wreaths
milk and cookies party with sweet shop sign

So, whether you prefer milk and cookies, a cookie exchange, or a full sweet shop idea for a party, you can use these ideas as a guideline for hosting the holiday party that fits best for you and your family! I look forward to sharing some recipes that I could recommend for holiday parties soon. Check back as I add more ways to celebrate the everyday with you! In the meantime, enjoy these parties here, here, and here too!

Also, here is where to find the beautiful Sweet Holiday Collection from Loralee Lewis

To order cookies from Bambella Cookies, you can find Tara here.

To order royal icing wreaths from A Party Made Perfect, you can contact Jennifer here.

bathroom countertop side view with ashley longshore painting on wall
One Room Challenge- Guest Bathroom Reveal Week
ORC logo One Room Challenge guest participant

It is pretty amazing how quickly things can be transformed with a vision, constant work, lots of sweat, and a deadline! Luckily, with this guest bathroom remodel, I knew how I wanted it to transform from the start. My husband re-designed the layout of the bathroom in CAD and removed everything that was in the original room. Before we began the remodel of this entire home, we made an agreement with the sellers to keep the outside facade the same structurally. We were also bound by many historical preservation association rules. Inside the home, we were able to put our ideas into play for how to redesign the layout to make it work for our family. It was a challenge, but I feel like we were able to restore and remodel to create a fresh look. The guest bathroom was at the top of the list to re-do as it needed new structural support from the ground up. You can see how this bathroom looked when we first started by going here for Week 1. To follow the progress…you can see Week 2, Week 3, Week 4, and Week 5. And, now, here are the photos of our One Room Challenge “Final Reveal” of our guest bathroom …

white bathroom with antique brass mirror over sink
bathroom counter with brass hardware and blue and white porcelain bottle
White bathroom cabinets with large round brass hardware
white tile floor with black greek key pattern
brass hardware faucet with water running
white bathroom with brass accessories and antique brass mirror
white towels on double brass rack with pagoda tea towels
bathroom gold bamboo table with towel and soap
glass shower with white tile and brass hardware
white tile bathroom floor with black greek key pattern and wicker slippers with bows
pink toile trash can in black and white bathroom
white bathroom toilet with brass
antique chandelier hanging in bathroom
white bathroom with antique chandelier brass mirror ashley longshore painting
white bathroom with ashley longshore audrey painting
white bathroom with glass shower and antique brass mirror
pink pagoda candle with soap in a silver dish
side view of water running out of brass faucet
white bathroom remodel with antique brass mirror ashley longshore painting glass shower
bathroom countertop side view with ashley longshore painting on wall

For this bathroom remodel, I wanted to have a crisp, white, clean feel to the room to bring it up to date. Because the house was built in 1918, we had to give up on perfect lines and everything being “plumb”. We put in a new foundation under the house and stabilized everything, but we still have the quirks of a home being 100+ years old. I like the idiosyncrasies of a home that is historical- it adds to the charm and also makes us realize not to sweat the small stuff.

One of my favorite pieces in this make-over is the antique mirror that I bought about 11 years ago. It was originally in my home office at our previous house. I have loved it since I laid eyes on it and wanted it to be used and enjoyed in our new home.

I also love the Ashley Longshore painting that I chose for the room. I bought it and kept it in storage until we were ready to move into our home. The houndstooth pattern is one that I have always been drawn to, and I loved seeing it in this painting. What’s funny to me is that the background in the painting is very similar to the drapery fabric I am planning to use in the guest bedroom that adjoins this bathroom. Those two patterns and the pink won me over!

The lighting is also another of my favorites- the sconces and the chandelier complement each other in material and color. As you can see, I like to mix metals, materials, and colors.

My friends at Parker Kennedy Living always have unique finds and beautiful accessories, and so I made a late night run to pick up items that were from their shop. These helped me put the final touches on the room. I added the new accessories to the guest bath and felt like I needed to scale back on the countertop decor. I snapped a photo and sent it to them, and Lance suggested a few items to edit. It was just what I needed to hear and helped finalize the look I was trying to achieve- clean lines with lots of personality tossed in the mix.

I love how this room has turned out. It is bright and airy and happy. We were able to preserve the feel of an old home while updating everything in it. I love the combination of old and new…from the antique mirror to the pop art on the walls, it was fun to watch the transformation~ and it’s even more fun to live in it completed. There is also something special about doing this project with my husband and knowing we survived it! Lol! My parents always jokingly said not to hang wallpaper with your spouse because it will cause a big argument- and so I am extra proud that we accomplished this home restoration, and I have enjoyed sharing with you the first room that we fully finished!

There are so many really wonderful homes to see at the One Room Challenge- everyone is sharing the finished room that they decorated. I have started looking at each one, and I am loving what I am seeing. I’m excited to see the rest over the weekend when I can take a virtual tour through more of the rooms. I hope you will stop by and see all of the hard work that has paid off in beautiful room after beautiful room! Also, thank you to Linda, creator of ORC, and Better Homes and Gardens, sponsor of the ORC. What a great community!

Wall Paint ~ White Custom Mix ~ I really wanted a glossy, lacquered paint but was convinced to go with less shine- I don’t know exactly what our painter put together to give it a little shine.

White Subway Tile~ Floor & Decor

White Marble- Floor & Decor

White Tile Floor with Greek Key in Black- Floor & Decor

Cabinetry- The Wood Doctor

Sink- Atlanta Marble

Faucet Hardware- Kingston Brass

Cabinet Hardware- High M Interiors

Antique Mirror- Hawthorne House

Sconces- Hawthorne House

Chandelier- Oyster White Interiors

Artwork- Ashley Longshore

Glass Shower Door and Walls- Quality Glass

Double Towel Rack

Faux Bamboo Side Table- Parker Kennedy Living- The Cellar

Blue and White Porcelain Jars- PKL The Cellar

Pink Pagoda Candle Holder- PKL The Cellar

Tea Towels- PKL- The Cellar

Pink Toile Trash Can- PKL- The Cellar

Mercury Glass Vase- Heery’s Too

Soaps- Appointments at Five

Vent Register- Similar Ones Here

Rattan Slippers- gift from my mom

halloween cakes on 3 round tables with balloon garland in the background
Sweet Sixteen Halloween Party Ideas

Sweet Sixteen and Halloween aren’t the typical party ideas that come together for one theme! Ha! But…I went for it for our Supper Club because we had to skip September’s Supper Club. Our dog had surgery and needed constant care, and so we postponed the Sweet 16 theme and rolled it into the next month. That is how Sweet Sixteen Halloween came to be! It was actually really fun to plan. I had so many ideas of what I wanted to do, and I feel like this theme could be expanded in so many ways.

halloween cakes in pink orange yellow

I wanted to do a grouping of 16 somewhere at the party. I thought about doing 16 candles down the center of a really long table, but I always get a little worried about flames and lots of teens around one table. Even though they are old enough to drive, I still feel like too many candles could be a problem. 🙂 Maybe I just still think of them as 6 instead of 16? I don’t know, but I picture long hair inadvertently ending up too close to a flame.

pink halloween cake with black spiders

Instead of candles, I decided to go with 16 cakes. I wanted the colors to reflect the “sweet” and then I wanted to add in Halloween decorations to the cakes. Originally, I wanted to have only 4-inch cakes but then changed to a mixture of 6-inch and 4-inch. I liked the variety of sizes, but I really loved the size of the 4-inch. The girls liked the smaller cakes, too. They were really cute and miniature.

orange halloween cake with candy bones and candy eyes
sweet sixteen halloween cake with gold letters
halloween cakes in a grouping on a round table

I ordered the cakes from Emilee Hain, of Keelime Culinary. Emilee used to own a restaurant in town and now she is a personal chef and baker. I was so happy when she agreed to give this idea a try- I knew I needed help to pull off 16 cakes all at one time. Emilee baked and frosted the cakes- I sent her photos of the colors that I wanted to use. I also wanted to use separate tables for the cakes. I used 3 round tables and set them all out before I decorated them.

pink yellow orange peach colored cakes in a group on round tables

And, then I just started decorating based on height and colors. It was fun trying to make each one a little different.

halloween-cake-ideas-witch-spiders

I added a balloon garland to the wall before I set up the cakes. The colors were a unique twist for Halloween, but I like how the black touches bring out the holiday vibe.

halloween cakes on 3 round tables with balloon garland in the background

I have mentioned on Instagram that watching your daughter learn to drive (and being in the car while that learning takes place), can be a little nerve-racking. For me, it has been the hardest milestone yet. It is tough not to be the one driving her and to trust that she is ready for so much responsibility. Because of that, I jokingly nicknamed this party, “Driving me Batty”. I had a little drawing at the party to commemorate this phase of parenting. 🙂

illustration of a pink car with blonde teen girl driver with pumpkins and bats

For the “supper” part of Supper Club, I set the tables with 9 girls at each table. I used Halloween napkins, cups, and straws and put fresh flowers in the center.

halloween party table set with flowers plates cups and napkins

I also added Sweet Sixteen headbands and candy sticks to the table.

Halloween party table setting with headbands and flowers

My daughter chose the menu and asked for Chicken Enchiladas. My husband made the enchiladas, and then I added a veggie tray, a bowl of fruit, chips, salsa, and avacados.

front porch halloween decorations with blue door and clay jack o lanterns

I set up the front porch with pumpkins and jack-o-lanterns for a warm welcome. The jack-o-lanterns are made of clay and are from a shop in northeast Georgia called Craven Pottery. They doubled as party favors for the girls to take home at the end of the night…

halloween front porch with jack o lanterns glowing on each step
group of teen girls sitting on front porch steps holdling jack o lanterns

One of the most fun parts of the night was that Supper Club happen to hit on the date of one of the girls’ actual 16th birthday! It was so fun to be able to celebrate it with her! It was a fun time and I enjoy hosting with my daughter each time! Feel free to ask me any questions about our Supper Clubs- or anything else that you see that you would like to know! To see last year’s Halloween Supper Club click here. You can find other Supper Club ideas here and here. Thanks for being here!

sweet sixteen party with 16 cakes

Cheers xo,

Lydia