Dr Pepper Pick Your Pepper Summer ~ Indoor Picnic Ideas

While summer is all about enjoying the outdoors, here in southern Illinois / most of the Midwest, the heat and humidity sometimes keep us indoors. I am not incredibly sensitive to the heat, but if you’re having guests over, not everyone is going to enjoy it or even be able to tolerate temps in the 90s, so you could always consider hosting an indoor picnic!

The theme/inspiration for this picnic was a bountiful French picnic that features ice cold Dr Pepper Pick Your Pepper theme bottles (a personal fave), and lots of delicious snacks. Nothing super heavy as far as food, just smaller bites that you and your guests can feast on throughout the evening.

Keep reading to learn more about how you can win fun and festive prizes for Summer.

Each 20 oz. Dr Pepper bottle features over 40 artistic and inspiring labels that contain a Snapchat code on them. To unlock this fun filter, simply open Snapchat, take a photo of the Snapchat logo / code on the side of the bottle, then a little notification will appear, giving you access to the filter. Below, two of my favorite Snapchat filters were outdoors themed.

YOU CAN WIN!

Callout that the fun, unique Pick Your Pepper packaging and how it’s fun, individualized, and designed by millennials, for millennials. Available in stores starting 6/15/18.

Call out the prize reward and drive to  http://bit.ly/2pts8Qo

When you buy Dr Pepper 6/15-8/15 this summer, you can upload your reciept at http://bit.ly/2pts8Qo  to get the prize featured in my blog here and/or other prizes like:

Spend $5 get 5 bottles = Dr Pepper Retro Specs

Spend $10 get 10 bottles = Dr Pepper Copper Lined Mug

Spend $20 get 20 bottles = Dr Pepper Bluetooth Speakers

Spend $30 get 30 bottles = Dr Pepper Pool Float

CHECK OUT THE RETRO SPECS, BELOW…

Scan the Snapchat code on any Dr Pepper Pick Your Pepper to reveal a unique filter you can use! I then save the image and share it wherever you want! Below, two of my favorites!

My boyfriend Bobby and I love being outdoors, so these filters are super cute. He adores fishing, so the Snapchat filter, shown above that says, “Keepin’ It Reel” is perfect for him!

While this particular picnic I hosted for this post was indoors, I loved bringing traditional outdoor picnic elements into the evening with galvanized metal trays to hold food, easy to eat bites of a huge assortment of foods, and even cozy floor pillows, rugs and lightweight picnic blankets. I still love incorporating rustic elements into my events no matter where I host!

There are so many benefits to hosting this picnic indoors - Think of it, no bugs, no heat, and all the food and drinks one can possibly snack on throughout the evening without having to leave the elevated comforts of home. It’s such a fun way to enjoy time with friends or have a date night!

TO SET A COZY SCENE:

I love the idea of reminiscing about days past, where we would put pillows and blankets onto the floor and have a sleepover. Now that I’m older, we don’t really do that anymore, so it’s fun and nostalgic to reminisce and more or less make a soft place on the floor to settle in for the evening! It could be super fun to set this up in the living room, where everything is centrally located. Or, even on a porch!

I also added upscale touches like French-inspired textiles in stripes and plaids of white and blue. I packed some of the 20 oz. bottles of Dr Pepper into a metal “picnic basket”, which was a great way to carry the bottles plus lots of other necessities.

FOR THE FOOD:

I am always drawn to bountiful plates of fruits and other bite sized foods, so this was the perfect opportunity to try my hand at not one but three snack trays!

For one platter, I used a large, round galvanized tray with handles to hold everything. I then placed a white charger plate in there, plus a marble cutting board to hold the meats and cheeses (this was the least messy way to display them), then placed items like croissants, red and green grapes, strawberries, and more.

For another tray, I placed mini chocolate chips, blueberries, and blackberries. For the last tray, I placed a bit of herbed goat cheese dip, sliced baguettes, and crackers to dip into the goat cheese.

I was so happy with how upscale everything looked!

TO SERVE YOUR GUESTS:

I used lightweight linens, gold plates, and gold plastic utensils (that almost looked real!!), which added a bit of shimmer and glitz to the picnic. The gold and white looked really lovely.

It would definitely be fun to host a similar picnic outdoors if you live somewhere the weather is nice all the time! I love this particular color scheme, and I know those party platters would really look great at so many of your summer events.

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Vintage-Inspired Football Party Plus 2 Recipes

Brought to you by Dr Pepper® and Eckrich®.

I am so excited to bring together lots of adorable décor and recipe ideas that I have been wanting to try out for a while now. This Football Party was inspired by Dr Pepper and Eckrich, which both embody the traditional taste of game day.

This party was the perfect excuse to pull out all the stops and go wild with classy and chic décor that makes me nostalgic for the past.

During my research phase for this post, I could only find a few examples of this sort of look I was going for, so I headed to Meijer, and then the fabric store to begin brainstorming. Walking around a store for inspiration is seriously priceless.

I wanted that vintage, chic, fall tailgate sort of look, and I think it turned out so well!

Football Party

THE DÉCOR DETAILS

I incorporated plaid flannel material for the tablecloth, which reminds me of a warm and cozy blanket or scarf one might wear to a football game on a chilly Sunday.

Next, one of my favorite DIY projects was to print out vintage football images from the 1930s for my bunting, which I taped to my wall. I made sure to print out the photos so two would fit onto an 8.5x11 sheet of paper, horizontally oriented.  

I also incorporated a few mini orange pumpkins, as well as my favorite mint cake stands to hold all of my refreshments and some of the snacks. For the drinks, I think it would be great to offer guests pitchers or containers of ice, and cute plastic cups for their Dr Peppers or other refreshments.

The chocolate donut “cake” is also amazing! I used 24 chocolate covered donuts to make the cake, beginning with two rows of 5 donuts, then two rows of 4 donuts, then one row of 3, then three single donuts stacked on top of one another. This cute display held together extremely well! I also added the football picks, also from a party store, to add that football aesthetic I was going for.

Vintage Football Party

As soon as I began to notice the cute Dr Pepper football themed soft drinks in stores, I knew it was time for football! I was so excited to learn that I had this amazing opportunity to collaborate with Dr Pepper and Eckrich that I rushed to Meijer right away to grab supplies. Eckrich Smoked Sausage can be found in the packaged meat aisle, and Dr Pepper can be found in the soda aisle.

Vintage Football Party
Vintage Football Party

Dr Pepper is the one fans crave and is the perfect complement to tailgating and homegating events during the college football season! Eckrich Smoked Sausage is Naturally Hardwood Smoked and crafted with just the right blend of spices for a truly rich, savory taste. Their Smoked Sausage Links are the perfect addition to any tailgate, cookout or family meal.

Vintage Football Party

Mini Smoked Sausage Pot Pies

COOK TIME: 45 minutes

SERVING SIZE: 6-12

INGREDIENTS

·       1 package (10-14oz) Eckrich Smoked Sausage

·       1 package (10oz) Frozen Mixed Vegetables, cooked

·       1 can (10 ¾ oz) Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup

·       1 can (16.3oz) Flaky Layered Refrigerated Biscuits

·       Non-stick Cooking Spray

·       Salt & Pepper to taste

PREPARATION

A miniature twist on a classic pot pie.

1.     Directions Preheat the oven to 375°

2.     Prep: Cook the frozen vegetables according to the instructions on the package. Set aside. Dice the Eckrich Smoked Sausage into cubes. In a large skillet, cook the sausage until browned. Remove from stove and set aside.

3.     Filling: In a large bowl, combine the cooked vegetables, smoked sausage, cream of chicken soup, salt and pepper to taste. Stir with a spoon until the ingredients are mixed well.

4.     Assembly: Spray muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray. Separate the biscuits and flatten each into 5½ inch rounds. Press firmly into each muffin mold. Spoon 1/3 cup of the pot pie mixture into each pie. Pull edges of dough over the filling towards the center, pleat and pinch gently to hold in place.

Chicken Pot Pie "Cupcakes"

1.     Bake at 375° for 25-30 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown. Cool for 1 minute; remove from pan and serve. These popped RIGHT out of the muffin tin, and looked gorgeous instantly. These taste like warm biscuits with chicken, sausage, and veggies inside. YUM!!!

Vintage Football Party Ideas
Chicken Pot Pies

Smoked Sausage Appetizer Bites

COOK TIME:  15 minutes

SERVING SIZE: 20

Appetizers

INGREDIENTS

·       1 package Eckrich Smoked Sausage (12oz-14oz)

·       20 bite-sized crackers (I used saltines)

·       2 tsp olive oil

·       1/2 package (4 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese

PREPARATION

Keep the crowd happy with these Smoked Sausage Appetizer Bites. They’re perfect as a snack or an appetizer.

1.     Preheat oven to 350°F.

2.     Slice sausage into ½-inch pieces.

3.     Heat oil in large ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add sausage to skillet and cook until browned.

4.     Top sausage pieces with cheese, then place skillet in oven and bake until cheese is lightly browned.

5.     Place cheese-covered sausage on crackers and serve.

 

Appetizers

A FEW MORE DETAILS

Caramel Apples

Since I wanted a nostalgic, vintage look and feel to the décor, I thought that the caramel apples were just perfect for fall. Below, I found these cute football shaped dishes at a party store and thought they were just the right festive touch for the party!

Appetizers
Football Party Ideas!
Football Party Ideas

The Best Way To Stay Cool This Summer! Summer Fun With Dr Pepper

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Dr Pepper®. The opinions and text are all mine. #PickYourPepper #Walmart

Summer is definitely here, friends! I’m trying to enjoy the outdoors as much as possible before it gets too dreadfully hot and humid here in southern Illinois. Luckily, there are lots of great picnicking areas and lakes available to us here in and around the Shawnee National Forest so we recently headed out to cool down!

I brought the sweetest summer essentials with me too – cold drinks, SPF, and my new 90s-inspired inflatable float :)

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

There’s nothing like floating in the lake or river while enjoying a cold drink and some fresh air. I always love to bring a big, floppy hat to protect my face and shoulders from excessive sun. Plus my ever-important sunscreen and my favorite shades - that’s about all I ever need to have a good time.

Dr Pepper sent me this float as part of their new Pick Your Pepper campaign with packaging that was made by millennials, for millennials, that I picked up at Walmart. It’s so unique and I was pleasantly surprised at how big the float was once inflated – it held me afloat in the water just fine! It was a little taller than me, so I could lay back and just float. I am excited to use this all summer and next year!

To claim your very own Dr Pepper Shaped Pool Float, or one of their other cute prizes, get the details below.

When you buy any Dr Pepper 6/15-8/15 this summer at Walmart, you can upload your receipt here to get the prize featured in my blog and/or other prizes like:

Spend $5, get a unicorn beverage holder inflatable

Spend $10, get a Walmart e--Gift Card worth $5

Spend $20, get a 6-pack can/bottle holder with ice pack

Spend $40, get a Dr Pepper bottle shaped pool float

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

I wound up getting almost everything for our day at the lake at my local Walmart! They have lots of cute summer items left, and some are even going on sale – get everything now before it’s gone.

I found everything from this tie dyed beach towel, which I absolutely LOVE, to my Dr Pepper, snacks, bowls to put the snacks into, summer-themed plastic cups, colorful straws, a cute sun hat, flip flops, and my new favorite summer clutch!!  

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

What are some of your favorite locations to visit during the summer to enjoy the outdoors? Do you tend to stay local, or do you like to drive a few hours to enjoy something even better? Leave a comment below and let me know – we are always on the lookout for travel suggestions!

Also, what are your favorite picnic day snacks to enjoy outside? I went for classic options, and everything paired well together. An ice cold drink always helps the temp cool from inside and out!

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

This day, we got the most perfect weather ever! A little on the warm side, but the slight, cool breeze really helped keep things feeling great – and luckily kept mosquitoes at bay! It had actually rained earlier in the day, but the clouds cleared just enough to allow us to enjoy the sunset (the best thing in the world to me!). The water was so calm this day.

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

Now, let’s talk lakeside fashion! I loved this Made You Look Sun Hat from Walmart! Each one of our local stores seems to have a bit of a different selection, so I tried to browse them all for the cutest summer accessories. I also found this pair of mint, crochet-like coverup shorts, near the selection of bathing suits. I also just HAD to grab these donut printed flip flops – after all, it’s summer, right now I’m saying, “I Donut Give A Care” to so many of life’s worries. This great weather is really doing me some good!!!

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

This "Made You Look" hat is so fun!

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

In order to offer chilled refreshments on a hot day, I bring a small bag of ice in my cooler, and simply set the drinks into a metal tray. I then dump ice into the tin. The cans chill in about 20 or so minutes, and it’s such a cute presentation! Speaking of presentation, I do love a cute food table display, so I brought out some cute items to the lake with us. I used three tins (one for drinks, one for chips, and one for cookies), two fish-shaped bowls for candies, a wooden box to elevate the drinks, and of course plates and napkins. No utensils were required

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

Love the three colored tassels on the clutch bag! How adorable for summer!!

Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper
Enjoy The Summer! #PickYourPepper

Taking a few extra minutes to set up a cute refreshment table really makes a day at the lake even better!

Invite your friends and family out this summer, and connect with them! Create meaningful memories during your summer celebrations that will be cherished forever!