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It's not too late to celebrate Mardi Gras!

Mardi Gras is upon us! And, as if the annual event could get any more wild and carefree, the streets of New Orleans are also full of sports fans celebrating their Super Bowl win.

Throngs of masked revelers and New Orleans Saints supporters alike are sure to be relishing in the delights of Mardi Gras celebrations until the festival is over on February 16th. (And probably a few days past that, if we're being realistic.)

Even if you won't be anywhere near the Latin quarter in the coming days, you can still get in on this life affirming celebration that comes just when we need a reason to party most - smack dab in the middle of winter.

If you and yours are feeling the February blahs, simply send out Mardi Gras invitations to friends and loved ones and stock up on Mardi Gras party supplies, like the infamous Mardi Gras beads, without which, no Mardi Gras party could be complete.

Fill your home with light and color

Next, fill your party space with colorful Mardi Gras decorations like loads of bright balloons, streamers and party lights.

Feel free to mix and match bold colors, or stick with one or two shades. Purple and silver work very well for Mardi Gras festivities.

Light plenty of candles before your guests arrive. Scatter tea lights around buffet tables, leave pillar candles glowing on fireplaces and counter tops and fill your candelabras with candlesticks. This will give your party a romantic and gothic southern feel that will delight your guests and transport them to New Orleans.

Keep the old-school southern charm theme going with delectable appetizers served on silver trays, and serve cocktails in your best crystal glasses (or plastic versions of them if you think the party will get rowdy).

Have plenty of wine and food available

Mardi Gras should be celebrated with gusto, so make sure that you have back-up supplies for your back-up supplies! Guests will want to eat, drink and be merry on this festive occasion, so lay out a lavish spread of party foods and have spare bottles of wine and champagne at the ready.

One traditional Mardi Gras dish is the king cake, which is usually a decadent cinnamon confection with the small plastic figure of a king baked into the batter. You could whip up one of these confections yourself, or purchase one at your local bakery.

Divide the dessert into equal-sized pieces so that all of the partygoers can get a taste. The person who has the figure in their piece is king for the party, gets to wear a crown and has certain privileges.

Planning a blow out bash can be a lot of work, but remember that Mardi Gras is about relaxing and enjoying life. When in doubt, just enjoy yourself!

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