My grandma, Rose or "G-ma," as I refer to her, celebrated her 90th birthday on December 19th. Quite a feat for anyone but my G-ma is a very special 90-year old: She is sharp as a tack, incredibly progressive (she has a crush on Will Smith and recently mastered Wii bowling), attends aerobics class twice a week and absolutely loves to iron. She might have the kindest heart of anyone on the planet and she absolutely loves the color pink.
So, in honor of her birthday, my family hosted a brunch for 30 friends and relatives the Sunday after Christmas. It wasn't just any brunch though...it was "Rose's Pink Ball" brunch. The event was held at the University Club in Rockford in a pretty private room that we absolutely showered with pink for the occassion. Pink tissue paper pom poms of all sizes hung from the chandeliers, windows and door frames. The tables were adorned with tiny arrangements of light pink roses.
My cousin, a pastry school graduate, and I made pink vanilla cupcakes with pink rose frosting. We had a candy bar filled with pink candy of all kinds. Guests were offered pink champagne and pink grapefruit juice upon arrival. Finally, everyone had to wear something pink...even the men.
Never one to shy from the spotlight, G-ma enjoyed every moment thoroughly...she spent the day shaking with laughter and even shed a few joyful tears.
For me, besides the fun of watching her in the spotlight, I absolutely loved planning the thing. My mother, cousins and I spent most of the previous day making pink tissue pom poms (possibly one of the cheapest, prettiest and most impactful decorations ever), baking cupcakes, arranging flowers, and, best of all making easy pink marshmallow pops.
I'd first read about these on Hostess with the Mostess, one of the best entertaining blogs ever! These pops are so easy to create but look absolutely adorable arranged in a vase or standing in a block of foam. They're quite tasty too! They lend themselves well to the pink decor but could easily be switched up to suite any color scheme. I have a feeling these will be a party staple for me moving forward.
Have you ever created a fun party theme that you just loved coming up with? What was it?
Also, I want to wish everyone a safe, restful and very happy New Year!
Makes about 40 pops
Lollipop sticks (available at craft and candy stores)
1 bag large marshmallows
1 bag white chocolate melting disks (available at craft and candy stores)
1 jar white non-pariel candies
M&M candies in the color of your choice
few drops of food coloring in the color of your choice
1 block of foam (available at craft stores or just use a block of packing foam like the kind that comes in appliance boxes)
Use one lollipop stick or a small screw of a similar size to boar holes in the foam. This will be used as a base to hold your lollipops upright as they dry.
Push lollipop sticks into the marshmallows so that they're about 2/3 of the way through the mallow. Set aside. Melt the white chocolate according to package directions in the microwave or in a double-boiler on the stovetop. When the candy is just melted enough to be smooth, stir in food coloring one drop at a time until you achieve the color you're looking for.
To decorate the marshmallows, dip the top 1/4th of each marshmallow into the white chocolate. Turn upright and shake white non-pariels onto the chocolate to evenly cover (this is best done over a rimmed pan or baking dish so that the excess candies are contained). Then, place a single M&M ("m" side down) onto the top of the pop. Stick the finished pop into the foam based and repeat with remaining pops. Leave the pops to dry for at least 2 hours or overnight.
To serve, arrange like flowers in small bud vases or juice glasses, or place a piece of floral foam in a small, square dish and insert the lollipops in even rows. Cover the foam with extra candies or floral moss for a finished look.