Thursday, December 22, 2016

Hosting A Space Party

I love costumed parties.  I wish there were more of them to go to.  If you feel inspired, definitely try hosting a space party.

A space party is a space/futuristic/UFO themed party.  Costumes are a must and creativity is encouraged.  You can't just have costumed people show up, you will also need decor, food, and entertainment.  I will provide you with an example of costumes, recipes for food and drink, decor examples, and ideas for entertainment.

Definitely come up with your own ideas.  Creativity is a must for planning parties.

Costumes Ideas

Try to stay away from popular tv show and film costumes.  It's not that they're bad, they're just so typical.  Encourage your guests to base their ideas on old sci-fi pulp art or ideas of futuristic clothing or what they think aliens look like.  Robots are also quite acceptable.


Here are 23 recipes that are sure to make your party out of this world!

1. Glow in The Dark Ice Cubes
Recipe HERE.  This requires a black light.

2. Jalapeno Jelly and Cream Cheese
This is a great spread for crackers.  Recipe HERE.

3. Food Cubes
Cutting food into cubes seems a little strange.  I suggest a tray of fruits and veggies cut into cubes.

4. Purple Yam Bread
Recipe HERE.

5. Space Cake
Zodiac/Astral Cake recipe HERE.  Black Velvet Nebula Cake recipe HERE.

6. Martian Ranch & Vineyard: Down To Earth Grenache Rose
Link HERE.  There are other choices available, all delightfully themed.

7. Alien Pods (aka Stuffed Peppers)
Recipe HERE.

8. Slime-Filled Cupcakes
Recipe HERE.

9. Earth Cookies
Recipe HERE.

10. Soylent Green
You can purchase these HERE.  If you don't understand this, go watch the film 'Soylent Green'.

11. Grilled Octopus
Tentacles are always a good idea for a space party.  Recipe HERE.

12. Diplomat's Dinner Meatballs
Recipe HERE from the KitchenOverlord.

13. Rick's Replicant Street Chow Noodles
Recipe HERE from the KitchenOverlord.

14. Mama Cobb's Fig and Onion Pie
Recipe HERE from the KitchenOverlord.

15. Spaceworm Spice-Stuffed Bread
Recipe HERE.

16. UFO Candy
Purchase HERE.

17. Galactic Eggs
Recipe HERE.

18. Chocolate Sunbutter UFO Cookies
Recipe HERE.

19. Blue Galaxy Cocktail
Mixing drinks?  Try this galactic wonder.  Recipe HERE.

20. Space Pasta
You can always make a pasta dish of some kind.  Purchase HERE.

21. Tang
Tang was invented by NASA.  You can find it at any grocery store.

22. Star-Shaped Sandwiches
These are SUPER simple.  Make a bunch of sandwiches and use a star cookie cutter to form star-shaped sandwiches.  Make sure you have at least 1 per guest.

23. Figs with Ricotta and Honey
These look like some kind of alien pod, which is awesome.  Recipe HERE.

Decor Examples

Here are 5 decor ideas that never fail!

1. Metallics and Shiny Colors
Decide on how you want to decorate for your party.  Commonly, the inside of a UFO, futuristic home, spaceport, etc are typically in a metallic and shiny color palette.  You don't have to use these for everything, but as accents.  I have some fabrics shown, but you can look for beaded curtains, streamers, tablecloths, etc.

2. Glow in The Dark Jars
These are pretty cool and can add to the atmosphere of the room.  Project HERE.

3. Make a Stand-Alone Piece
You can take the time to make a stand-alone piece for your party space.  Your guests may take selfies there (above: Miss Earth is standing in front of a stand-alone piece) or it can just be decoration.  You will want to use cardboard, paint, glue, foil, foam, cellophane, paper mache, and odds n' ends.

4. Vintage or Reproduction Halloween Sci-Fi Cutouts
You can either find these or try making some of your own, which would take cardboard, paint, and possibly some brads for any joints.  You would want to look for aliens and UFOs...possibly a cow being abducted.  Look on ebay and etsy.

5. Space Hanging Items
At Oriental Trading Company, you can find a bunch of stuff to hang that will look space-tacular at your party.  Purchase HERE.

Ideas for Entertainment

1. Dancing
This sounds all too easy, but it's not.  Finding space-themed music isn't the easiest.  Here are a few space pop albums that I recommend for background music (youtube links): Fantastica by Russ Garcia, Project: Comstock.  Music from outerspace by Frank Comstock, Mr.Spock Presents Music From Outerspace, Space Escapade by Les Baxter, and Blast Off! by Ferrante and Teicher.  I would also recommend sci-fi soundtracks or theme songs.

You might also want to snag some space themed rock or pop music such as: "Mr.Roboto" by Styx, "Come Sail Away" by Styx, "Earth Girls Are Easy" by Julie Brown, "Cosmic Wheels" by Donovan, "Ziggy Stardust" by David Bowie, "Space Oddity" by David Bowie, "I Believe in a Thing Called Love" by The Darkness, "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger" by Daft Punk, "Cygnus X-1" by Rush, "Flash" by Queen, "Computer Love" by Kraftwerk, "Space Travel is Boring" by Modest Mouse, "Interstellar Overdrive" by Pink Floyd, "Watcher of the Skies" by Genesis, "Into the Void" by Black Sabbath, "Spaceman" by The Killers, "Astro Zombies" by The Misfits, "Mr. Spaceman" The Byrds, "In The Year 2525" by Zager and Evans, "Two Little Men in a Flying Saucer" by Ella Fitzgerald, "Out of Space" by The Prodigy, "Invaders Must Die" by The Prodigy, "Mothership Connection" by Parliament, "Telstar" by The Ventures, "Hanger 18" by Megadeth, and "Intergalactic" by The Beastie Boys.

2. Charades
This is always a great party game.  Everyone knows how to play, and if you don't you can start HERE.  You can play sober or drunk.  You can even use some index cards to create your own space-themed/scifi selections!

3. Space-Themed Murder Mystery
There are a few places online where you can order a custom murder mystery game.  You might even be able to find a space one, but who knows.  This will take some searching, but it could be well worth it for a fun evening!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Forming Resolutions

It's getting to that point in the year where most people are about to start forming their New Year Resolutions.  I do this periodically throughout the year, but I'm feeling like it's definitely time to make some changes in my life.

I would love to know your thoughts and what your resolutions are.

Here's what I've come up with so far.

  1. Pick up 2-5 freelance writing gigs each quarter, for the next year.
  2. Finish the first drafts of two novels in the next 6-12 months and submit them to publishers.
  3. Get on top of whatever is up with my body and drop a few pant sizes.  Right now the doctor is thinking it's an overproduction of estrogen or something.
  4. Find 3-4 potential places to move to, look for jobs, possibly move by September.
  5. Don't get tied down to any local projects.  I spend too much time, effort, and money on things that are never appreciated and I always feel like it was just a big waste.
  6. Put more effort into selling myself as an author.  This also means I need to tell myself that I am decent at what I do.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Retro Winter Items From Not-So-Retro Stores

You don't have to shop exclusively at retro reproduction stores to find some great winter retro items.  Since I'm currently in the midst of sharing finds perfect for cold temps and snow storms, I thought I'd share these finds with you.

If you want to look for these things yourself, here are two big tips: 1. Look at stores that were open during the time period you tend to lean towards  and 2. Ask yourself where your grandparents might have shopped.

1940's Corduroy Dress from J. Peterman Company
This dress is a bit heavy for summer, since it's made from corduroy, but it is perfect for winter!  Available in sunset or teal.

Movie Star Coat from J. Peterman Company
This looks a lot like Marilyn Monroe's coat!  It only comes in black.

Glamour Pants from J. Peterman Company
These are 1940s men's trousers adapted for a woman's body.  They come in 11 colors.

Washable Year-Round Wool Pants, Classic Fit Plain Front from LL Bean
Washable wool pants for men!  Bonus, these things come in 5 colors and you can select up to a 36" inseam.

Washable Wool Whipcord Pants from LL Bean
Washable wool again!  Only comes in loden green.  This is more of hunting pant.

Bean Boots by LL Bean
These boots come in various colors and with various types of insulation, you can find them for men and women.  These were designed in 1912 and have been popular ever since.  Traction, waterproof, heavy duty, winter options.

Wool sailor pants!  Only in one color.

 '49er Jacket by Pendleton Wool Mills
This is a classic 1940s and 1950s style wool jacket, kind of like a shirtjac.  There are a few color options to choose from if you search.

 Signature Ashbury Topper by Pendleton Wool Mills
 This is a lovely car coat available in moss or heather grey.

 Signature Manhattan Coat by Pendleton Wool Mills
A classic jacket for the man in a suit!  Only in grey. 

Shawl-Collar Sweater by Pendleton Wool Mills
There are a few various styles and colors available for men.  These are totally classy and very 1940s and 1950s winter wear.

Alaskan Wool Shirt by Woolrich
This is a heavy wool shirtjac that was designed for the Alaskan goldrush back in the 1890s.  It's been popular ever since.  Comes in grey, red/navy, olive, buckskin.

Wool Bomber by Woolrich
Women's wool bomber jacket.  Comes in a few colors.

Sports Coat by Hardwick
Hardwick has been around for a long time.  They made workwear for the troops during WWII and then made an economic rebound by selling sports coats and blazers.  Variety of colors and styles.

Madison Fit Harris Tweed Herringbone Sport Coat by Brooks Brothers
Brooks Brothers actually has a LOT of suiting attire for men.  I suggest checking it out.  You can really get that Indiana Jones look.

Janney Boot by Ugg
An updated version of a classic 40s and 50s winter boot for women.

Ellecia Boot by Ugg
An updated version of a classic 40s and 50s winter boot for women.

An updated version of a classic 40s and 50s winter boot for women.

Snap Front Portuguese Flannel Robe by Vermont Country Store
This was a popular style of robe in the 50s.  The Vermont Country Store has it in three patterns of warm flannel.

Flannel Grandfather Nightshirt by Vermont Country Store
Yes, these are out of vogue for most men but they were still popular in the 40s and 50s.  I have seen the patterns available on etsy and ebay.  There's a variety available in various fabrics.

Men's Classic Leather Slipper by Vermont Country Store
Check out these super classy and super classic leather slippers.  Very vintage-inspired.  They come in black or brown.  You can also find them lined with shearling, as scuffs, and as shearling lined scuffs.