Perfect Picnic & Party Musts for Memorial Day & All Summer Long #MadeBySmallBiz


After holing up in our homes thanks to what seemed like an endless winter, Americans from coast-to-coast will be welcoming warmer weather and summer with barbeques, outdoor parties and picnics and days at the beach.  To help you celebrate the long weekend and the rest of the summer  we’ve got some must-have products that will make you  (and your family, friends and party guests) say “where did you get this?”  Your answer? “From a cool small business, of course!”


Make Your Own S’more Bar with Nutty Steph’s Chocolate & Barefoot & Chocolate spread

Let’s start with dessert first, because we’re adults and we can! S’mores have bee in my top five favorite things about summer category, every year since I was able to eat solid foods.  They not only taste amazing, but one bite and I’m instantly transported back to my awesome family camping adventures from my childhood.  This year I encourage you to follow my lead and make “Sophisticated S’mores” or perhaps a S’more Bar by letting guests (or yourself and a very lucky pal).  Just grab the graham crackers and marshmallows and pick your favorite flavor chocolate spead from Barefoot & Chocolate (hello, hazelnut or chocolate coconut) or lay out a variety of Nutty Steph’s chocolate bars in flavors like Peanut Butter, Salted Caramel, Maple Walnut and Pistachio Cranberry.  Like all our other #SmallBizSnacks finds these won’t run you over $10.00!   and enjoy it for dessert or around a bonfire.


Pegs Salt

Pegs Salt for BBQ Seasoning

It’s time to add a little something special to your meats, veggies on the grill to potato salads and salad dressings!  Peg's is a seasoned salt that is handmade in Greenwood, Virginia. Based on a family recipe from the 1970s, it has become a staple in hundreds of kitchens and soon it will be in yours too.  Oh and did we tell you that you can snag one for under $5.00?  This seasoning is a small biz steal!


Vixen Vodka

Vixen Vodka

It’s hard to avoid cocktails and beer when you’re at Memorial Day parties, or any summer soiree for that matter, but if you’re like me, you want a drink that won’t come with a beer belly and still gives you a summery feel.  You’re in luck!  Meet Vixen Vodka, a gluten-free, super-smooth spirit that is taking the vodka world by storm.  Cherry on top? It’s run by two entrepreneurs (and vixens themselves) who are some of the first female faces in their industry! We’ll drink to that!  
Drink to it with us with this special Vixen Vodka cocktail recipe they shared with us:

The Cocktail Recipe: The Vixen Long Weekend

  • Equal Parts Vixen Vodka & Orange Peach Mango Juice (you can find Dole's brand in your refrigerated juice department in the grocery store).
  • Pour over ice and top off with a splash of Orange Flavored Sparkling Water (we prefer LaCroix).  It’s, easy, refreshing AND delicious!

For more amazing recipes from the Vixens check out their Facebook recipe page - bottoms up!

Palmetto Cheese

Palmetto Cheese

If you haven’t had this spreadable cheese before, trust me when I say walk – don’t run – your fingers over to their website and snag one in every flavor.  As a non-southerner I had no idea what pimento cheese was before seeing and then tasting this delight that hails from South Carolina.  If you’ve ready any of my past posts about them you know that from the moment I tried it I was hooked.  Addicted.  You will be too, and you’ll want to grab a few tubs because it’s perfect for summer snacks including: burger toppings, chips & dip, cheese & crackers, grilled cheese,  fried in little balls of crispy cheese goodness…Okay I’m getting hungry now.  You should be to, so stock up for the summer on their site which should be easy as they’re less than $5.50 a tub!


Comfort Seat

Comfort Seat

Now that you’ve got some food standouts to make your summer party a hit, here’s a must-have that you’ll get some many uses out of in one season it will pay for itself: The Comfort Seat.  This durable, light, fold-up-and-go-anywhere, adjustable to 14 different positions seat will go with you everywhere this summer, from parties to camping to sporting events.  No one wants to the one stuck sitting on the ground.  Come prepared, come with your Comfort Seat.  Did we mention it’s under $100.00 and comes assembled?  I can personally testify that I use mine for reading in the park and in the winter use it as an extra seat for movie night with friends! It’s worth every penny!



Flying Wish Paper

Flying Wish Papers

A good party ends on a high note.  Do that, and in fact end any summer party, from a bonfire to a wedding on a magical note with Flying Wish Paper!  Their (under $10.00) paper wishing kits include multiple (and beautiful) wish cards on which you and guests can write your dreams, ambitions, concerns or burdens - and Then you shape your paper into a tube and place it on the Wish Platform Card. Light the top edge of the tube and watch it burn down in a small, beautiful flame. At the last moment your wish magically lifts off the platform and rises to the heavens.  What a special way to end a perfect summer picnic, and this post!