Our family moved into our new house this past spring. It was a fixer-upper, to say the least! We wanted to have a housewarming party, but we wanted to get the house “mostly” finished.
Mostly = finished downstairs, arranged upstairs, and clean!
We gave ourselves a deadline of October 1st, which is when we planned our party.
My husband came up with the idea of a Homecoming party because we moved back to the city where he grew up. The problem was, where he went to high school and the high school we are currently zoned for are not the same. In fact, they’re rivals!
To be fair, we went tied in the colors of the school we were zoned for. One day, we may be donning the purple and gold colors with pride because it’s where our daughter will go to school! (If we still live here in 15 years!)
To decorate the mantle, I made a quick banner using felt squares and stick-on letters. I found some paintable foam fingers at Michael’s and personalized them to my heart’s content!
I made these bullhorns using the paper-mache Christmas trees. I cut off the tips and painted them in purple and gold. I finished them off with a glitter spray.
Instead of making full-sized pennants, I decided to make Pencil Pennants. I cut a purple foam sheet into triangles, punched holes in them, decorated them with puff paint, and put them on yellow #2 pencils.
For a little extra decor, I placed some folded paper “origami” around the living room. I made a fortune teller, a note to my husband, and some rings. (Originally, the rings were folded out of dollar bills, but I didn’t want to leave money around my house!) I also had a bunch of squishy footballs, just to tie in the Homecoming feel!
Because I know you want to know what the note read:
Classy. But he still hasn’t answered….
When I first thought of hosting for a high school homecoming-themed party, I thought of the food. The first food I thought of was cartons of milk. (FYI: actual cartons with milk in them are hard to find.) I decided, though, that I didn’t want to have the typical high school cafeteria fare…but I wanted to incorporate it. So, to include milk cartons, I made a banner with milk cartons that I folded out of cardstock.
Food that I commonly associate with high school is PIZZA. I had originally planned on getting squares of pizza, but as I mentioned before, I wanted to play off the idea. Enter: PIZZA DIP.
- 4 ounces cream cheese, room temp
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1 cup mozzarella, grated
- 1/2 cup parmesan, grated
- 1 cup pizza sauce
- Preferred pizza toppings, optional (pepperoni, green peppers, olives, etc.)
- Preheat the oven to 350 F
- Mix the cream cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, 1/2 of the mozzarella, and 1/2 of the parmesan. Spread it across the bottom of a pie plate.
- Spread the pizza sauce on top.
- Sprinkle with the remaining cheeses.
- If desired, add pizza toppings.
- Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbling. (About 20 minutes.)
- Serve with crusty bread or Triscuits.
- 1 pound potatoes
- vegetable oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp dry mustard
- 1/8 tsp garlic powder
- Set the oven to Broil.
- Do not peel potatoes. Cut them lengthwise into thin slices.
- Place potatoes on ungreased pan; brush with oil.
- Mix the salt, sugar, paprika, dry mustard, and garlic powder in a small bowl.
- Sprinkle the potatoes with half of the seasoning mixture.
- Broil the potatoes for about 10 minutes.
- Remove the pan, then turn the potatoes.
- Brush with oil, then sprinkle with remaining seasoning.
- Broil for 5 minutes, until potatoes are golden brown.
No party is complete without a veggie tray! This was our “Salad Bar.” Funny enough, the biggest consumers of this dish were the toddlers at the party!
Of course, not every kid in school bought cafeteria food. Some brought their own lunch. Most popular sack lunch item: Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwich. I turned it into a simple dessert!
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 1/2 cups crunchy peanut butter
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups strawberry preserves
- Heat oven to 350 F.
- Place butter and sugar in mixer with paddle attachment. Beat on medium-high until mixture is fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- On medium speed, add eggs and peanut butter. Beat for 2 minutes.
- In a large bowl, whisk together salt, baking powder, and flour. Add to the mixer on low speed.
- Add vanilla.
- Transfer 2/3 of the batter to a 9×13 greased dish. Spread evenly.
- Spread jam over peanut butter mixture.
- Top with remaining peanut butter mixture.
- Bake until golden, about 45 minutes.
Who doesn’t love ice cream! My favorite ice cream novelty in school was always the classic ice cream sandwich. This is a very simple recipe!
Ice Cream Sandwich Dessert
- 12 ice cream sandwiches
- 12 ounces Cool Whip
- 12 ounces hot fudge topping
- In a 9×13 dish, arrange 6 ice cream sandwiches.
- Spread half of the Cool Whip over the sandwiches.
- Spoon hot fudge topping over the whipped topping.
- Arrange remaining 6 sandwiches over the fudge.
- Top with remaining Cool Whip.
- Cover and freeze. (Can be frozen for up to 2 months.)
- Remove from freezer 20 minutes before serving.
If you were like me in high school, you lived off of junk food courtesy of the vending machine! I offered up bagged chips and bite-sized candies. (Thank you Halloween candy section!) I grabbed some dark chocolate Hershey’s Kisses and almond Hershey’s Kisses to keep within the purple-and-gold color scheme!
For our beverages, I made my orange dreamsicle punch. (Vanilla ice cream and orange soda.) The original plan was to spike the punch (with vanilla vodka from the “Teachers’ Lounge” bar) after the kids left, but there wasn’t any punch left to spike! Oh well!
I had a blast hosting this party, and I thank each and every person that showed up! It was so much fun that I didn’t get a chance to snap any pictures of us hanging out, giving tours of the house, playing on the piano, building a fire in the firepit (thanks to my assistants “Jonny Rags” and little Anna Grace), and drinking “Apple Pie” that my brother made!
Can’t wait to do this again!