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Paula’s 4th of July Deck Party

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There’s the sweetest little house at the end of our property that sits right over the Wilmington River. It’s actually the oldest structure on our property and truth be told, it’s my favorite place to be. The cool breeze comin’ off the water makes our Savannah heat almost bearable. This year Michael and I decided we are going to host a little July 4th holiday dock party out on that tiny deck, right smack in the middle of the day!

Most likely the weather is going to be so hot I could spit on the ground and watch it sizzle, so I want to be prepared with plenty of cool drinks and simple foods to snack on. My inspiration for this party comes from some sweet pinwheels that have me feel incredibly nostalgic. Just like the way I used to decorate the handlebars of my bicycle, I’m going to decorate my dock house deck with pinwheels for my party. Y’all, if I’ve shared with you nothing less, I hope it would be not to fret any party giving! Look at how a bunch of pinwheels and some simple foods can make any place—even a sweet little space like mine—seem grand. Happy 4th of July, and as always, from the bottom of my heart, I thank all that have served and continue to serve our wonderful country, and thank you to the families who support them at home.

My Menu: Mason Jars, cutting boards, and simple melamine plates are all I used to set up the food for this little get together. When the temperatures are rising, I’ve found people sometimes like just a few snacks and not a heavy meal. Summer melons are so sweet this time of year you don’t even need to fuss with a dessert.

Drinks: Because the temperatures are rising so high, I want to make sure to have plenty of drinks on hand. My Watermelon Cooler is the perfect summer sipper. Since Bobby and Jamie are stopping by, I wanted to mix up a batch of something from one of their books. I chose the Cucumber Sangria from Get Fired Up. Now that one will just be for the adults!

Decorations: These table decorations are as festive, inexpensive, and easy as they come. Simple paper pinwheels stuck inside some monkey grass I’m going to plant in my garden later. I used some old galvanized buckets to put the monkey grass pots down in. You can use whatever paper you want to make your pinwheels. I like the idea of stars and stripes paper too! Let your imagination run wild. If you forgot how to make a pinwheel, let me remind you how. It’s really easy, and look how fun these are! Learn how to make my Summer Pinwheel Centerpieces here.

Paula Deen - As a young girl growing up in Albany, Georgia, Paula Deen never dreamed she would become an American icon. As a young mother, Paula was living the American dream — married to her high school sweetheart and raising two adorable boys — when tragedy struck. Her parents died, her marriage failed and she began a prolonged battle with agoraphobia. With her boys in their teens and her family near homelessness, Paula took her last $200, reached deep inside her soul and started The Bag Lady, a home-based catering company that marked the start of Deen's professional cooking career. With sons Jamie and Bobby delivering lunch-and-love-in-a-bag, beginning in June 1989, Paula turned her life around by sharing what she knew best, traditional Southern cooking.

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