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New Year's Day Dinner Decor

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm so happy to have seen the back of 2016. So, it was nice to have been able to welcome in 2017 with a lovely celebration with friends and family who stayed over with us on New Year's Eve.

I love having folk staying over, and as on this occasion it meant we got to properly use the amazing new table David handcrafted for me as a Christmas gift, I was even more delighted.

I so enjoyed preparing the table and dressing our kitchen with some perfect party decorations I picked up in Marks and Spencer for half price just days before Christmas including a fabulous celebration banner with interchangeable letters in gold, rose gold and silver to suit every occasion from birthdays to anniversaries, along with gold and silver pleated fan decorations and some party horns.

Party banner and decorations from M&S

I also bought these gorgeous gold geometric baubles in M&S that make perfect place setting decorations and complemented my centrepiece, tea light holders and glittering candles all from The Stables Emporium in Birr, County Offaly - a gorgeous boutique homeware destination with a lovely Tea Room and guest accommodation too.

New Year's Day table setting with Newbridge Silverware plates and glassware and M&S geometric decoration

It was my first time to use my Clarity Carafe wine decanter from Galway Crystal that I picked up in the sales in Arnotts last year, which looked stunning on the table and my Newbridge Silverware silver edged plates and wine glasses that I picked up last year in their annual sale.

Clarity carafe wine decanter by Galway Crystal

I wanted to make really nice celebratory roast dinner with all the trimmings, but conscious that probably after a late night partying with prosecco, followed by making breakfast for a full house, I didn't want to be stressing out with a complicated menu. So on Saturday evening I headed off to my local Aldi to put together a budget friendly, time saving yet delicious New Year's Day dinner.

I selected a lovely roast beef joint that was just perfect size for everyone and all the ingredients I needed for Jamie Oliver's perfect roast beef recipe. I thought an easy time saving starter would be spring rolls with sweet chilli dip on a bed of salad (though in the end the bacon rolls for breakfast were so filling, no one wanted a starter so I didn't bother making it). For main course we had roast beef, served with roast potatoes, Aldi's Specially Selected luxury range of Yorkshire puddings,  frozen baby carrots and peas (as there wasn't a fresh carrot to be found there on Saturday) followed by my bargain of the day Aldi's luxurious croquembouche patisserie kit - a self assembly profiterole tower complete with a gold stand from their Specially Selected dessert range that was reduced from €8.99 to just €4.99 but looked and tasted a million dollars! Believe me, if the Ambassador decides he wants a change from his annual Ferrero Rocher platter, this is definitely a contender.

Aldi's Specially Selected Croquembouche Patisserie Kit 

It was a lovely meal (despite my Le Creuset dish malfunction - it cracked in half on the hob from my over zealous making of gravy a la Jamie Oliver creating a beefy waterfall down the front of my oven - note to self: earthenware oven dishes and induction hobs don't mix!) and an enjoyable afternoon with good company and great banter was had by all.

If my first day of 2017 is any indication of how to make the most of the year ahead, it is that spending quality time with good friends and family is the best recipe to follow for real happiness.

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