7 Holiday Cocktail Party Essentials

From now until January our schedules are sparkling with holiday activities — between the big dinners and gift shopping, it’s our duty to throw a holiday cocktail party. Anyone can throw a great cocktail party, but here are 7 Holiday Cocktail Party Essentials to make your party memorable.

LED-Plate

Add glitz to your holiday table with an LED Charger Plate. The elegant metallic plate has 16 gleaming LED lights decorating the rim. Set a centerpiece, wrapped treats or nuts on this plate to brighten your snack table!

Buffet Caddy frees up space on the serving table by keeping all of your dinnerware in one spot. The top section organizes your flatware in 4 round baskets, the center section holds napkins, and the bottom section keeps dinner plates easily accessible. The metal frame has a scrolled design and durable balled feet to keep the caddy in place on any surface.

Party-ServerMultifunction Server with Lid is a 6-in-1 hosting essential! The clear server looks like a cake stand with a dome cover, but the cover can be turned over and set in the stand for use as a bowl. The center section also serves as a dip bowl. From snacks to salads, appetizers and desserts, this versatile server makes hosting a holiday party simple with elegance.

These Humorous Wine Accents display witty sayings that get the holiday cocktail party conversation started! The Set of 3 Bottle Stoppers look great on your favorite bottles of wine and provide a laugh each time your guests go for a drink.

Wine-Bottle-CharmThe Get Jingly Wine Bottle Jewelry turns any wine bottle into a part of your holiday decor! The charm loop — with 9 red and green bells — fits over the neck of the bottle for a little twinkle and a lot of jingle! A silvertone plaque is inscribed with a jolly message for the festive season.

Buffet Iced Serving Collection takes the work out of hosting a cocktail party! You don’t have to worry about keeping the cold food cold  – each piece has a tray at the bottom for holding ice! Serve dip or sauce in the stainless steel Dip Bowl, which nests inside its plastic ice holder. The plastic 8-Pc. Serving Bowl Set can be used for anything from a veggie snacks to salad. 4 Servers clip to the side of the bowl to hold garnishes. The Egg & Appetizer Tray has a stainless steel insert that holds 24 deviled egg halves over ice. The plastic tray can also be used alone as a 4-section serving platter for appetizers.

Cocktail-Party-essentials7The Holiday Wine Bottle & Glass Holder is an adorable way to dress up a bottle of wine for your cocktail party! A finely detailed, cheerful face tops a spiral body that fits around a standard wine bottle while two arms hold your wine glasses.

We’re all bubbly with cheer for the holidays, but there’s no reason we can’t add a few more accents to our cocktail party — no one ever complained about having too much joy! Shop LTD Commodities for more entertaining and holiday gift ideas to make your holidays brighter!

Cranberry-Apple Fritters

Cranberry-Apple FrittersWe’re making fritters here at LTD! In case you don’t know what a fritter is, it’s delicious. It’s basically little bits of food battered and fried to make a sort of biscuit (savory) or donut (sweet) — either way, it’s irresistible! Our favorite at LTD is the apple fritter, but since we’re knee-deep in the holidays, we’re sharing our recipe for cranberry-apple fritters. They’re fairly easy to make — and worth the time and effort to make a festive breakfast treat. Here is how to make cranberry-apple fritters at home:

Cranberry-Apple FrittersCranberry-Apple Fritters

  • 1 cups all-purpose Flour
  • 1/4 cup granulated ugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 TB melted butter
  • 1/2 Granny Smith apple, peeled and diced
  • 1 ½ cup fresh cranberries
  • vegetable oil for frying (amount depends on the size of the pan you are using, but make sure you have a few cups)

Cranberry-Apple FrittersGlaze

  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • pinch salt
  • splash vanilla
  • 2 TB milk

Cranberry-Apple-FrittersInstructions:

For the Batter:

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients with a fork. In a separate bowl, lightly beat the egg and add the remaining ingredients except the apples and cranberries.

Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture and stir together until everything is just combined. Do not over-mix — it should be lumpy. Fold in diced apples and cranberries.

In a heavy bottomed pot or a deep skillet, heat about two inches of oil over medium heat to about 350℉. To test if it’s ready, drop a pinch of the batter in the oil. If it spits and spatters, it’s ready.

Cranberry-Apple-FrittersFor the Glaze:

While you’re waiting for the oil to heat, whisk together the powdered sugar, vanilla and milk to make the glaze. Set aside.

Cranberry-Apple-FrittersTo Par Bake:

To make the fritters the way you might find them at a donut shop, you par bake them — if you don’t, you’re limited to making a lumpy donut hole. Par baking them lets you make them big and flat. To do this, pre-heat your oven to 350℉. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Scoop about ¼ cup of the batter and plop it on the cookie sheet — this makes six piles of batter on the cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes.

The fritters should be baked just enough that you can slide a spatula underneath them and lower them in the hot oil — one at a time.  Fry for one minute on each side until they’re golden brown. Scoop them out with the spatula or slotted spoon and place them on a paper towel-lined platter to drain for a minute. 

Place your hot fritters on a cooling rack (with a pan or parchment paper underneath to catch oil or glaze). Spoon the glaze over the fritters. This recipe makes just enough glaze for this method, but you can double the amount of ingredients for the glaze if you want to dip the fritters in the glaze.

Apple fritters are delightful, but cranberry-apple fritters are divine and December is a perfect time celebrate this as a dessert or a rich breakfast. Happy holidays!

 Cranberry-Apple Fritters

Pinteresting Picks for November

Now that the Thanksgiving dishes are washed, it finally is time to fill our homes with the lights and magic of Christmas. LTD’s Pinterest followers already are looking forward to creating unique centerpieces with glowing orbs, then filling the table with down-home cooking. Don’t forget to use safety seals on extension cords and get plenty of specially sized gift bags and packages for everything under the tree. Here are our Pinteresting Picks for November.

Use this Set of 3 Lighted Glass Balls to create ambiance in a room or shed a little light on a specific area.

Use this Set of 3 Lighted Glass Balls to create ambiance in a room or shed a little light on a specific area.

Accidental country girl and cooking star Ree Drummond is back with her latest mouth-watering collection, The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Food From My Frontier.

Accidental country girl and cooking star Ree Drummond is back with her latest mouth-watering collection, The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Food From My Frontier.

Set of 6 Felt Gift Card Holder Tags offers an easy way to wrap gift cards and cash presents.

Set of 6 Felt Gift Card Holder Tags offers an easy way to wrap gift cards and cash presents.

 

Protect outdoor electrical connections for a holiday display or at a job site with a Set of 2 Extension Cord Safety Seals.

Protect outdoor electrical connections for a holiday display or at a job site with a Set of 2 Extension Cord Safety Seals.

Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week

It is finally time to get down to some serious holiday shopping. This magical time of year is all about children, and that shows in the variety of toys, clothing, and other delights waiting for you at LTD Commodities. Here are our Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week.

Your little girl will feel like she's caring for a real baby with a La Newborn Real Life 14" Doll Set or Outfits.

Your little girl will feel like she’s caring for a real baby with a La Newborn® Real Life 14″ Doll Set or Outfits.

Add adventure and excitement to their pretend covert operations with the Military Walkie-Talkie Command Center.

Add adventure and excitement to their pretend covert operations with the Military Walkie-Talkie Command Center.

Jelly Belly® Gift Boxes include 10 or 40 different flavors of the world-famous, delicious candy.

Jelly Belly® Gift Boxes include 10 or 40 different flavors of the world-famous, delicious candy.

Your child can save the day with a Rush & Rescue Remote Control Vehicle!

Your child can save the day with a Rush & Rescue™ Remote Control Vehicle!

 

 

Pinteresting Picks For October

The holiday season finally is upon us, and our Pinterest followers already are thinking of fresh ways to spruce up their homes.  Cover your home with lights, then grab some comfy clothes and enjoy your holiday. Here are the Pinteresting Picks for October.

Create a family keepsake with Holiday Handprint Wall Art.

Create a family keepsake with Holiday Handprint Wall Art.

Protect outdoor electrical connections for a holiday display or at a job site with a Set of 2 Extension Cord Safety Seals.

Protect outdoor electrical connections for a holiday display or at a job site with a Set of 2 Extension Cord Safety Seals.

Forget magnets on the refrigerator and use Easy Change Artwork Frames to give your child's artwork the attention it deserves.

Forget magnets on the refrigerator and use Easy Change Artwork Frames to give your child’s artwork the attention it deserves.

Stylish Women's Camo Cargo Sweatpants are cute and fun!

Stylish Women’s Camo Cargo Sweatpants are cute and fun!

Adopt a Shelter Dog Month: What to Think About When Adopting a Dog

dog

It’s Adopt a Shelter Dog Month — according to the ASPCA, almost 4 million dogs are taken in by shelters in the United States each year. Only about 1.4 million of those dogs are adopted. So many more need homes! And dogs are awesome companions. Here’s what to think about when adopting a dog:

Check with Your Landlord If you rent an apartment or house — before you start looking at any of those cute, furry faces — make sure pets are allowed in your building. Even if your landlord said pets were ok when you moved in, the policy may have changed. Shelters will call your landlord to check the pet policy. The shelter won’t let you take home that pup you have already fallen in love with if he’s not welcome in your building.

dog1Consider Monetary Costs Dogs can be expensive. Not including special costs like grooming, the first year of owning a dog can cost about $2,000. The costs go down after the first year, but there are still expenses. There are also other unexpected costs like an illness or injury and things we don’t think about like teeth cleaning. Make sure you can afford a dog before you take one home.

Consider Time Commitment Dogs need a lot of attention — not just affection. They need to be walked and have outdoor playtime. When you leave for work in the morning, you have to figure out how the dog will get walked or how he’s going to be cared for when you want to go out of town.

Consider Your Family Whether it’s a child, wife or roommate, everyone needs to be dog-friendly. This doesn’t just mean being nice to dogs, but consider allergies and ages of everyone in your home. If your husband is mildly allergic to dogs and you bring in a new pet and your husband’s allergies are aggravated by the new dog, you don’t want to be in a position in which you have to return the dog to the shelter.

If you’re not tripped up by any of the above considerations, here’s what you’ll need when you go to adopt a loving dog in need of a new home:dog3

  • A legal form of identification (license or state ID) proving you are at least 18 years old
  • All family members including any other pets and children to introduce to your new dog
  • To be able to take the animal home on the day of the adoption
  • An hour to talk to an adoption counselor to talk about what it means to give a dog a forever home

If you’re on the fence about inviting a dog home, consider the benefits of having a dog — they most definitely outweigh the costs.

Thanksgiving Decor: Simple Ideas to Decorate for Thanksgiving Without Effort

Polka-Dot-PumpkinWith all the things you have on your Thanksgiving plate, the last thing on your mind is the Thanksgiving decor. However, while you might be trying to avoid Thanksgiving disasters, you don’t want your house to be unadorned when your guests arrive. Here are some simple ideas to decorate for Thanksgiving without effort.

Outside You don’t have to worry about outdoor holiday lights just yet, but giving your outdoor space Thanksgiving and fall accents liven up your home and help welcome guests as they arrive for dinner.

  • Daytime Line your steps with pumpkins — big or small, carved or whole, real or artificial — they give your porch a fall flair. With a leaf wreath, stacks of hay, mums, and strategically places leaves, they make a stunning, end of year display. leaf-wreath
  • After Dark Make your walkway inviting and safe for friends and family with solar garden stakes. Decorative or plain white lights, they illuminate the path to your door with charm. With a yard and porch armed with fall’s bounty guests will be prepared for a festive gathering inside.

Inside When guests enter, you want the fall feel to continue. You don’t have to dress up the entryway for a grand entrance to make it a warm welcome —  a few simple tweaks to your everyday decor can give it an autumnal aura.

  • Living Room Guests don’t sit down at the dinner table as soon as they walk in, but they will want to sit and relax before the food is served. Adding a few fall colors to the living room helps guests unwind before filling up on turkey. Swap out your regular throw pillows for pillows in soft browns or fall designs. On end tables, add warmth with scented candles or vases with fall floral arrangements. For empty or white spaces, add fall leaves — leaf wreaths aren’t just for the front door, they can dress up any wall space. If you’re feeling crafty, you can create a wreath made with felt leaves. pillar-candle
  • Dining Room Decorations for the dining room don’t have to be too elaborate since the focus is on the food, but you still want to add some fall accents. Lovely LED candles give a table and buffet a warm glow without the risks and messy wax of real candles. Line the mantle or top the curio cabinet with simple fall leaf arrangements — now is the time to collect the beautiful yellow, orange and red leaves for extra embellishments! For ideas and tips on how to build great Thanksgiving table decor, check out our article on creating a Thanksgiving Tablescape.

Whether you’re dressing up your dining room for Thanksgiving or you need ideas for Christmas decorations, LTD Commodities has a wide variety of decor to give your home the warm holiday welcome as you usher in winter.

Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week

The fall and winter holidays are not the same without incredible homemade food. Whether you are hosting this year or plan to be a guest, our excellent values will help you prepare your kitchen, take a favorite dish with you, or give a fun hostess gift. Here are our Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week.

A Slow Cooker Carrier is a must-have for holidays, family gatherings and social events.

A Slow Cooker Carrier is a must-have for holidays, family gatherings and social events.

The Cut and Serve Spatula is an all-in-one utensil that lets you work smarter!

The Cut and Serve Spatula is an all-in-one utensil that lets you work smarter!

 

Wash dishes or clean up your home with a 10-Pc. Terry Kitchen Towel Set.

Wash dishes or clean up your home with a 10-Pc. Terry Kitchen Towel Set.

Metal Monogram Wine Cork Holder looks distinctive empty or when filled with tokens from your favorite wines.

Metal Monogram Wine Cork Holder looks distinctive empty or when filled with tokens from your favorite wines.

 

Simple Halloween Decor Ideas

Ghost-Yard-StakesYour house doesn’t have to be a haunted mansion for Halloween — but it’s fun to show Halloween spirit when kids come trick-or-treating. Here are some simple Halloween decor ideas to use without having to go all out.

Yard Even if you don’t have a knack for Halloween decorating, you want your home to be welcoming to trick-or-treaters. Light the walkway to your porch — luminarias are beautiful yet spooky, but if you want the decor without the fire hazard, solar garden stakes work well, too. They don’t have to be Halloween themed — if you use simple lights, you can keep them up through the holidays to give your outdoor decor Christmas cheer.

If putting up headless horsemen or elaborate mummies is intimidating for you, or you don’t want to put in that much effort, consider putting in Halloween-themed yard stakes — they’re all of the Halloween fun and none-of the work.

pumpkin-planterPorch Pumpkins are the quintessential symbol of fall and Halloween, but you don’t have to go through the ritual of carving a pumpkin every Halloween to have a pumpkin on your porch for display. A seasonal display of ceramic pumpkin planters with your favorite fall plants and flowers dresses up your porch without all the seeds and goo that go along with jack-o-lanterns. Ghost bunting or even a Halloween flag or banner draped across the posts of your porch also add a simple and festive Halloween accent.

halloween-door-decorDoor On Halloween night, you’re going to be opening and closing the front door more than any other time of the year. You want it to be approachable for trick-or-treaters, but putting together a scary display is a lot of work for people who aren’t crafty. But you don’t have to be crafty for your door to look nice and festive. A fall wreath or a festive door greeter sends the message your house has Halloween spirit. If you don’t want to put anything directly on your door, holiday porch light covers illuminate your door to give it a festive touch.

pillar-candleIndoor Inside, give your home Halloween accents without transforming the decor by putting out few candles to give it a slightly haunting glow. If you light enough of them, it will look slightly spooky from the outside as well as the inside. If having open flames is a concern, you can get the same effect from LED candles. If candles don’t have quite enough Halloween flair for you, kick it up a notch — Halloween-themed table settings dress up the dining room while lighted Halloween canvas art bedazzles the wall.

It’s easy to make your house Halloween-ready with a few additions here and there without making the decor overwhelming. If you’re planning something more elaborate for a party we have more ideas to create a Halloween experience with food and decor. Whichever route you choose to fill your house with Halloween spirit, LTD Commodities has ideas and products to pull anything off.

Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week

We have reached the point in autumn where we can both look forward to Halloween and start planning for Christmas. Our values help you get ready for holiday entertaining and decorating, and they make sure your young superhero is properly dressed for a round of trick-or-treating. Here are our Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week.

He can be 2 heroes in 1 with the Reversible Superman™/Batman™ Cape.

He can be 2 heroes in 1 with the Reversible Superman™/Batman™ Cape.

 

Take a room from simple to sophisticated by adding this 3-D Rosette Sherpa Throw.

Take a room from simple to sophisticated by adding this 3-D Rosette Sherpa Throw.

 

Light up the holidays with or without snow with The Light Flurries™ Outdoor Light Show.

Light up the holidays with or without snow with The Light Flurries™ Outdoor Light Show.

Each 88-Pc. Stainless Steel Flatware Set has service for 12!

Each 88-Pc. Stainless Steel Flatware Set has service for 12!