• Pamela Froman

It's Time For Spring, The Oscars And Valentine's Day!

Spring Entertaining

Spring is swinging into town and it's the best time to throw a party and entertain. During wintertime, you don't get out of your flannel pajamas, but with warmer weather, you'll want to sip a cocktail or chow down on bbq outside in the beautiful weather. So it's time to be social! Hosting a get-together is the perfect activity – and it's fun too.

What are the essentials for spring entertaining?

Get your backyard ready. Your lawn should be at its greenest. Regularly mow and use fertilizer to keep it healthy. Prune your plants to keep them looking clean and fresh. Decorate your space with plants in containers. It's a quick and easy way to add color and variety to your outdoor space. Throw in some mood lighting. Tiki torches will brighten up your backyard as the sunsets. You can also create your lights with candles in mason jars. Finally, make sure your grill is ready to fire up!

Killer cocktails will be a hit with your guests. You can serve drinks in style with an outdoor bar. Spring cocktails incorporate seasonal ingredients that make them the perfect addition to any spring soiree. Here are fabulous spring cocktail recipes to try this season:

White sangria is a delicious choice that is a funky twist to the usual red sangria. White sangria is amazing for large parties. Serve it in a wine glass over ice and garnish it with fresh citrus.

A grapefruit margarita is a tart alternative to the traditional tequila cocktail. It's got a low sugar content so it's easy on your waistline. This drink is served in a lowball glass over ice with a lemon embellishment.

Strawberries are a sweet treat that is perfect for spring. Drink your strawberry mojito in a highball glass over ice and decorate with a strawberry and fresh mint.

A lemon basil martini is light and refreshing. This cocktail is a great way to kick off your spring party! Serve in a chilled martini glass along with a lemon twist.

Mint Juleps are a classic cocktail famous for its rich history with the Kentucky Derby. Find out what Derby-goes have known for a long time — mint juleps are a wonderful way to celebrate spring. Serve in a low-ball glass, over ice, and deck it out with a mint leaf.

A fun activity or game gets your guests to relax and mingle. Plan games that work for different age groups, like young kids, teens, and adults. Offer prizes as an incentive.

There are tons of fun spring activities for children. Plan a scavenger hunt. Make a list of items that are easy to spot, and are also easy for young kids to read on the list. Have an adult help with the game by holding the list, and asking for each kid to call out each thing. All of the children should search together. Objects can include things like a rock, stick, leaf or flower. Award prizes at the end of the scavenger hunt like bubbles, sidewalk chalk, and kites.

You can plan exciting and fun games and activities for teens at your party. A potato sack race or two-legged race is the perfect way to amp their energy, and work out team spirit! To get started all you need are potato sacks and ties. Draw a start line and a finish line and have a judge present at the finish line to determine who wins! Prizes for the winners can include iTunes gift cards, a deck of cards, or a frisbee.

Pass the Orange is a fun game for adults. You need are two teams and two oranges. Divide adults to make an equal number on each team. Each team stands side-by-side. Give the first person on each team the orange. Say "Go," and the adult places the orange between his or her chin and neck, and then without using their hands, pass it to the next member of the team. The team that gets the orange to the end of the line first without dropping it, wins. Prizes can include a Starbucks gift card, lottery tickets, or adult coloring books.

Outdoor rugs and pillows are perfect for chilling out on the lawn. Guests want to be cozy and comfortable while partying at outdoor events. Spring evenings can get chilly so a blazing fire pit, snug seating, and a plethora of blankets make it perfect for your friends and family.

The Oscars

The most celebrated golden statue is back with the best films of the year! It's the 92nd Oscars and this year promises to celebrate some amazing achievements in movies. The ceremony, televised on ABC on February 9, will again have no host this year. The Oscars will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide.

The Academy has announced a preliminary list of star-studded presenters to keep the show interesting. They include Mahershala Ali, Olivia Colman, Regina King, and Rami Malek. All four return to the Oscars stage after winning last year in their respective acting categories.

Nine films are competing to take home the most prestigious award. Nominees for Best Picture are Ford V Ferrari, The Irishman, Jojo Rabbit, Joker, Little Women, Marriage Story, 1917, Once Upon A Time...In Hollywood and Parasite. Joker received the most nominations with 11 including Actor in a Leading Role and Directing. The Irishman, 1917 and Once Upon A Time...In Hollywood, each garnered 10 nominations each.

The 92nd Annual Academy Awards is just the beginning. The after-parties are even more star-studded.

The party starts after the ceremony has ended at the Governors Ball. This famous party is hosted by the board of governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. It takes place in the grand ballroom at the Hollywood & Highland Center. Such an extravagant affair needs equally delicious food. So, for the last eighteen years, chef Wolfgang Puck has carefully crafted each menu.

Vanity Fair's Oscar Party is "the golden ticket." The Vanity Fair Party has been held in a custom-built space adjacent to the Wallis Annenberg Center and Beverly Hills City Hall for the past three years. A green-and-white carpet welcomes celebrities like Emma Stone, Justin Timberlake, Orlando Bloom, Jennifer Aniston, Vin Diesel, Jimmy Kimmel, Mariah Carey, Katy Perry, Mick Jagger, Sofia Vergara, Elizabeth Banks, Scarlett Johansson, and Matt Damon. Guests pop into photo booths and out onto smoking patios, tearing up the dance floor of the Apple Music Lounge and snack on donuts.

The annual Elton John party, held at the Pacific Design Center, has raised over $175 million for the AIDS Foundation. Expect to see star attendees – from musicians like Bono, Lady Gaga, and Katy Perry, to supermodels like Heidi Klum, Victoria Beckham, and Naomi Campbell, to designers like Donatella Versace and Christian Louboutin, to athletes like Johnny Weir and Serena Williams. Chef Gordon Ramsey serves up an exquisite five-course meal. The celebrity auction is the highlight of the night, with items like Broadway tickets and drinks with Neil Patrick Harris, autographed portraits, a piano signed by Elton John, and automobiles given away. Don't be surprised if someone like Ed Sheeran, Foster The People, or Elton John himself performs!

Valentine's Day

Love is in the air – it's Valentine's Day. Everywhere couples celebrate their romance. Here are some date ideas for every stage of a relationship.

You two just met recently or just decided to take your friendship to the next level. Make Valentine's Day fun.

Attend a cooking class. You'll know how to make a meal for your next date.

Dessert and drinks are a more casual way to celebrate the day.

Go roller skating. You'll have to hold hands to stay upright and you will have some good laughs as you skate around the rink.

Have a take-out contest. Each of you orders your favorite take-out meal and then you decide whose is best. The loser buys drinks!

Go swing-dancing as you twirl to live music.

Have a picnic under the stars for a low-key date with plenty of romance.

You are officially an item and this isn't your first Valentine's Day. While you are sweethearts, your relationship still feels new!

Have a dinner date at your favorite fancy restaurant. Just remember to make reservations.

Salsa dancing lessons allow you to hold each other close.

Go-karting is an adrenaline rush. You'll laugh at each other as you spin into the wall.

Make fondue. Chocolate and cheese are gooey, oozy goodness.

Go to the opera and enjoy the gorgeous voices. It's also truly romantic.

You are truly comfortable with each other, which means you can be romantic while also enjoying each other's company with a chuckle or two.

Sing off-key at a karaoke bar. You'll both belt out your favorite tune.

Get frisky and go skinny-dipping. You'll laugh at your naughty behavior.

Go camping. It's time to rough it romantically.

Visit a botanical garden. Take in all of the gorgeous blooms and their delicious aromas.

Take a hot air balloon ride. Check out how your city looks from the air

A comedy show is full of fun. Nothing is better than a good laugh.

You have been together for many years – you have history. A romantic Valentine's Day will help you remember all the reasons you are with the love of your life.

Have a three-course date with appetizers, entrees, and dessert. For a romantic twist make each at a place where a milestone in your relationship took place.

Recreate your first Valentine's Day date together. See how your celebration feels now that you have been together for years in bliss.

A champagne brunch is a perfect way to toast to your relationship.

Take a spa day together. A couple's massage will be perfect for blissful relaxation.

Play a round of golf at your favorite course. Enjoy a fun-filled day together.

Of course, these date ideas can be used year-round – so shower your sweetheart with affection!

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