Last weekend we hosted what I hope to be our first annual "Hot Chocolate Bar" for our fabulous neighbors. After moving in this past April, the wonderful folks of our lil ole' block have been beyond generous and welcoming to us and our new little man. They have gone out of the way to make our home and street feel like a place where we truly belong. Thus, we thought it was beyond time we gave back to them in a small way (and plus, it was a great excuse to get us all together to hang out during these cold months where we are all hibernating indoors.)
Prior to the holidays, I put together a few festive invites for each family on the block. My dutiful hubs then traipsed through the snow door-to-door delivering them (bless his heart) to get the word out. We thought it would be nice to wait until after the holidays and new year had begun as a) that time of year is always so incredibly busy and b) there is always a bit of a lull/let down after as everyone heads back to work/school, so we thought this may give us a little something to look forward to.
We prepared our hot chocolate in two crockpots for our 20+ guests using this recipe I would highly recommend from One Good Thing by Jillee. Friends, this recipe uses chocolate chips as the main source of sweetness which made the most rich and delicious treat my mouth has ever laid its lips on.
For the bar portion of our event, we grabbed a few mason jars and an eclectic mix of bowls and trays from our cabinets to set up all the fixins'. Our optional add ins included Heath bits, Butterfinger bits, Andes mints, Mocha Chocolates, Marshmallows, Pirouettes, a variety of candy cane flavors (which I may add you can find on sale after the holidays), caramel sauce, whipped topping and an adult beverage choice for those interested in an additional twist to their drink.
I also whipped up a little sign to frame and add the finishing touches to our table. Special thanks to Lilly Ashley at Make it Create for the wintery chalkboard digital paper freebie. A copy of the sign can be found here. I'd love for you to print it and create your own "local bar" for your neighborhood. Use it as an opportunity to connect through the long winter months, or better yet, make a connection in general, if you have neighbors that you haven't met yet! Enjoy!