today i'm excited to finally share all of the details that went into
, the second annual creative retreat
and i hosted last month! you can see a little of our
. This year we decided to plan our getaway around things related to cocktails... crafts, outings, "education" and any other items on the agenda. the goal was to get some of our favorite creative ladies together for a weekend of relaxing while encouraging sharing stories, tips or advice, recharging and just plain old getting inspired by new surroundings. it worked. i will say that i built stronger bonds with old friends and got to know new ones better. came home with a new way at looking at some projects. shared advice i can only hope helped some girls out in their own businesses. and obviously had an inspiring getaway from real life. here's what we did...
we started out heading up ahead of the other gals to set up a little decor, stock the fridge and prepare activities and crafts. but first
wine at the
. i hope this tradition never dies.
we were lucky to have a private home to spend the weekend in. this definitely presented some new challenges we weren't faced with last year in a hotel. we were able to bring a boatload of whatever we wanted to decorate with and stock the house with as we had all the room we needed. this definitely added a fun little touch to the retreat, but boy, it was a lot of extra work on top of planning everything! i made some signs when we got there to share the hashtag for the weekend and give the girls a quick view of what to expect with an itinerary.
the bar. was. stocked.
obviously. it was called camp mixalot after all. we set up a special mimosa bar for the girls arrival. i'm sharing more on that tomorrow, but i'll tell you it's a fun new twist on the mimosa you'll have to try!
sent us all the sparkling wine we could handle in one morning. i've tried a lot of champagne, sparkling wine and prosecco and will say that this one has my heart as far as morning cocktails go. it was just the right amount of sweet to play off of the fruit and herbs we added!.
girls were greeted with this fabulous floating balloon fixture we crafted up. this was seriously one of my favorite parts. love how it turned out. from now on, any time we have a party where there is a pool involved, this is happening.
we also prepared some fun gift bags with goodies we added, gifts a few brands contributed, and items the girls would need throughout the weekend. check back as we'll be giving one away to you guys!
after everyone got settled, we all headed outside for a poolside wine tasting + pairing.
provided a cab, sauvignon blanc and more sparkling to pair with small portions of our favorite recipes. sharon had a fab recipe for a refreshing peach and walnut salad to pair with the sparkling, i suggested we use
to pair with the sauvignon blanc, and we ended with a farro and grilled steak salad to go with the cab. so good! the pairings were spot on and it was a fun way to incorporate a very laid back tasting. we found some cute baskets at daiso, filled them with individual cups, and served to each guest picnic style around the pool.
sharon prepared a signature cocktail for each afternoon. the first day we had some
. we also included recipes for these cocktails on special recipe cards included in the girls gift bags. it was a fun way for them to remember what we were mixing up and share the love once they got home! i'll be sharing the download to those recipe cards this week too!
the weather took a turn, which meant back inside for some crafting! we brought supplies to make fun signs to hang over all of our bars. we simply wrapped the inner part of the frame in muslin, cut letters out of felt, hot glued and framed. aren't they fun?!
sharon hosted a little granola bar tasting that day as well which was perfect left over for afternoon snacking.
it continued to rain. so we continued to craft! we made some friendship bracelet drink markers for our wine glasses. because. can you imagine the amount of wine glasses that were sitting around this joint?
we also prepared little vials of beads and string to use throughout the weekend. i thought it would be fun for down time and it was. girls grabbed them throughout their stay to make friendship bracelets and necklaces. so fun.
our first night we uber-ed it to
where they demonstrated all of their craft cocktails. it was fun to hear more about what they use and why, the difference between certain whiskeys, and get schooled in some terminology i had never heard of they were using on the menu. plus the whiskey cocktails were pretty good;)
we ended our first night back at
. sorry there aren't more pictures from here
we had the punch. go there, have the punch, you'll get it.
the next day we did a little thrifting, lunching (got the usual, fries and wine), and then headed back to the house for more pool time and sharons second signature cocktail,
. this cocktails sounded horrendous but ended up my favorite of the weekend. spiced rum and white zin? try it. then email sharon to thank her. we have a recipe card for you on this one too. will share soon!
for our final night, we set the table all fancy and welcomed
, into the home to spoil us with a paleo inspired dinner. i'll be hiring this girl every time i go to palm springs from now own. she brings everything in, cleans, cooks, serves, is super cute and nice, then cleans up and is on her way at the end of the night. because, who wants to cook and clean up a mess on vacation?
i also asked
to do me a huge favor and craft up the centerpiece for us to decorate. where she lives, she basically has a forest in her backyard, so she grabbed a piece of wood, drilled in some holes and we decorated with candles, air plants and flowers. love how that turned out.
we also gave each girl a little inspirational print.
now i'm hungry. again.
after enjoying our final sunset with the girls, we put our our pi's that
sent over for all of us
drank more wine, laughed, talked, and ate leftover donuts we didn't finish at breakfast.
we all made one last breakfast and were on our way, a little tired, but mostly inspired.
so sharon and i are already scheming for next year. we'll prob change it up a bit, that makes it fun, but it will always be an inspiring getaway for creative girls to relax, meet and share. we get a lot of questions when we share, so we thought we would see what you guys are interested in! so now you can sign up here if you are interested in learning more about the next one, ya!
and now the credits for this fabulous weekend:
, awesome friend, awesome planning buddy -
for the fabulous bubbly -
for keeping us cozy -
for being an insane cook -
also. check back tomorrow and the next day for how to make the melon ball mimosas, a diy for another craft not shown here today, a giveaway and printables of our recipe cards!