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Stunning Thanksgiving and Christmas Tables Settings

October 31st, 2018
Thanksgiving, holidays, holiday table, holiday tablscapes, turkey, holiday celebration

Gold and red Thanksgiving tablescape from Pottery Barn

Today is Halloween and I’m sad because, if you know me,  you know that I LOVE everything Halloween!  However, I won’t be down for too long because during the holiday season, when one holiday passes, another one is just around the corner!

My focus for the next few weeks is going to be Thanksgiving! I love Thanksgiving because it’s all about fall… the colors, textures, but most of all, the food! Thanksgiving makes me think of warmth and comfort. I love watching QVC and seeing all the fuzzy blankets, flannel sheets, and pajamas that go on sale. I love the cool crisp air and the fragrance of peoples’ fireplaces burning in the evenings. It’s just a fabulous time of year.

I had a chance to visit Plaza Frontenac, a shopping center in St. Louis, and stop in some of the stores which display beautiful tablesscapes.  Here are some of my favorites.  Also, I am going to show Christmas tablescapes as well since I know some people like to put out their Christmas china on Thanksgiving.  Enjoy!

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Another Pottery Barn Fall Table Setting

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Stunning silver fall table setting from Williams Sonoma

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Loving this color combination of black and gold fall table setting

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Another beautiful Williams Sonoma fall tablescape

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Reindeer, reindeer, reindeer! I can’t help but adore this whimsical reindeer themed place setting from Pottery Barn

Fall, tables, place setting, thanksgiving, Thanksgiving placesetting, silver, plates, china, plaid, holiday, holiday plaid, christmas

Plaid tableware from Pottery Barn. I will always love plaid. It’s one of the most classic and elegant winter patterns. I can definitely see using these plates and mugs even after the holidays.

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Plaid and Santa… Need I say more? Pottery Barn never disappoints.

 

SPOOKTACULAR Halloween Party Video!

October 28th, 2018


My friend Sandra is an incredible hostess!  She is a professional floral designer but in reality, she is an artist.  Here is link to a video where we showcase her beautiful home decorated for Halloween… yes, that is a Halloween tree in the photo and she has FOUR of them! Each year, I can’t wait to see what she creates for Halloween.  It is truly spectacular. Click on the above image to go directly to the video and view her home.

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Blingy Halloween Pumpkin by Sandra Fulton

I also had to post one of her favorite Halloween pumpkins. Sandra calls herself the Queen of Halloween and she LOVES bling!! This pumpkin, encrusted with rhinestones, gold sequins, and a myriad of other stones, is one of her favorites.  She posts it every year on her Facebook feed.

 

Beautiful Fall Wedding at The St. Louis Botanical Gardens

October 9th, 2018

As I was going through my photos, I stumbled upon this beautiful fall wedding which I think is wonderful to showcase during my October post.  My husband’s cousin, Elliot, married the love of his life, Dawn, in St. Louis. Their reception was at the St. Louis Botanical Gardens and it was spectacular.  I loved all the beautiful fall details as well as the personal touches Dawn incorporated into their wedding design.  Beautifully done, Dawn and Elliot!

My husband and I enjoying the setting at the St. Louis Botanical Gardens wedding reception.

Wedding dinner buffet filled with a large assortment of delicious cheeses, fruit, and appetizers.

Dawn and Elliot’s dinner buffet was overflowing with delicious menu items which included fruit, nuts, crackers, breads, and lots and lots of different kinds of artisanal cheeses as well as a huge selection of hot appetizers.

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Hot d’oeuvres were also served and they were absolute perfection!

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Bite sized sandwiches as well as shrimp cocktail shots were also on the buffet. They were displayed with such clever creativity.

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More hot d’oeuvres! Bacon wrapped scallops… YES!  I love how the serving platters are all different.

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The reception was outside, the weather was perfect, and what a beautiful view!

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Love this simple yet creative centerpiece. You don’t have to spend a ton of money for perfection! LOVE IT!!

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Obsessed with this pumpkin cart filled with white pumpkins for guests to take home. Who doesn’t want an adorable pumpkin to take home and enjoy in October?

Weddings, wedding buffet, appetizers, d'oeuvres

Love the chalk-board menu!


Sun Dried Tomato Bruschetta

May 25th, 2015

sundriedtomatobruchetta

Brace yourselves, you are about to fall in love!!  While I was working on my 30 day salad challenge (that’s right, I’m making a new salad every day for 30 days), I discovered this recipe.  Originally, I made it for my Sun Dried Tomato & Mozzarella Salad.  I didn’t add enough olive oil to the recipe initially, so my dressing turned out a bit thick.  When I tasted it, I was IN LOVE.  I quickly put it on top of some french bread and voila… it was as if it was meant to happen!!  Below is the recipe… enjoy!!

4-60z  Sun Dried Tomatoes in Olive Oil
1 Tbsp olive oil
1-2 tsp capers (drained)
1-2 garlic cloves
9-10 basil leaves

Combine all ingredients above in a food processor (leave a few basil leaves for garnish) and pulse until well blended.  Spoon the mixture on top of french baguette pieces and top off with basil leaves. If the mixture is too thick, add more olive oil until the desired consistency.

Love “Salt and Sweet” Together? I’ve Got The Perfect Recipes For You!!

May 17th, 2015
kctv5

How lucky am I? I got to spend this morning with the beautiful ladies from KCTV 5’s Better Kansas City! Today, I shared my two recipes for something sweet and salty… my “caramel” popcorn made with real maple syrup and lavender sea salt and my apple and goat cheese Phyllo/Filo cups quiches. Get ready, because they are absolutely delicious!!

popcorn

Enjoy the delicious taste of caramel while benefiting from all the wonderful and beneficial nutrients that come in maple syrup. They include minerals such as potassium, magnesium, and iron. Plus, this syrup is non refined and contains no fat. Below is a recipe for the most simple version which includes the maple syrup and lavender salt. But I got a little creative (photo I posted above) by adding almonds and pretzels to my popcorn. You can add anything you want! And if you want to get super creative, add a “savory” element with a bit of diced turkey bacon!!

SWEET & SALTY “CARAMEL” POP-CORN

1/4 – 1/2 cup – Grade A Maple Syrup (Doesn’t matter if it’s medium or dark, whatever you like best). The range of syrup depends on if you want a heavily coated popcorn or slightly coated.

1/2 cup of pop corn

2-3 tablespoons of butter

Lavender sea salt ( plain sea salt will work as well)

Pop your popcorn. You can do air popped, bagged, or microwave, although I prefer air popped.

Put the popcorn in a bowl and set aside. In a small sauce pan, bring your maple syrup to a boil. Add the butter and let the combination boil for 2-3 minutes. You can mix the butter and syrup slightly, you don’t have to constantly stir the mixture in the pan, move your spoon through it once or twice and leave it alone. Have your popcorn, baking sheet, and salt on standby and ready to go. While your syrup is hot, you have a small window to work with the popcorn. Once the caramel is ready, pour it over the popcorn and mix (I use a wooden spoon) while the caramel is still hot. Keep mixing until the popcorn is well coated with the caramel, then quickly spread it out on a cookie sheet and begin salting with the Lavender salt.

Once you are happy, give it 5-10 minutes to dry. Once the caramel popcorn is dry, you can place it back in the bowl and serve.

WARNING: No matter how good the popcorn looks, don’t serve it when it’s wet. Your guests will have sticky caramel on their fingers which is difficult and no fun to get off. Additionally, you can add other things to the popcorn. Salted nuts, pretzels, bacon (for a bit of savory), dried cranberries (for a bit of sour), or anything else you like. Just remember to add these items while the caramel is hot and you are mixing it with the popcorn.

quichecups

These are super easy and can be made for wine tasting parties, breakfast parties, brunch, lunch, dinner… you name it!! They are beautiful to serve and delicious!!

APPLE AND GOAT CHEESE FILO/PHYLLO QUICHES

12-24 Filo/ Phyllo Cups (available in the refrigerated section)

1 Red & Delicious Apple

2 Eggs

1 tbsp Half & Half

1/2 package of Goat Cheese

Nutmeg

Dried blueberries and cranberries

Honey

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place the Filo/Phyllo Cups in a lightly greased mini muffin pan. Dice the apple and place a few small pieces in each Phyllo cup. Mix eggs, half & half, a dash of salt, and a dash of nutmeg together in a measuring cup. Carefully pour a little bit of the egg mixture in each cup. Finally, put a generous amount of goat cheese on top of each Filo cup. Place the mini muffin pan with the Filo/Phyllo cups in the oven and bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Let cool for 2-3 minutes and arrange on a plate. Drizzle with honey and serve.

Spider Egg Meatballs

May 1st, 2015

spidereggmeatballs

How Do I start off #31DaysOfHalloween?!  With these super easy Spider Egg Meatballs!  They are simple to make and wonderful for parties or even a quick snack!  This recipe was adapted from Pillsbury and I prefer using their rolls  because they are nice and fluffy.  Enjoy!!

Ingredients

1 can (10.2 oz) Pillsbury™ Grands!™ refrigerated buttermilk biscuits

1/3 cup shredded Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese

10 refrigerated or frozen cooked beef meatballs, thawed

1/4 cup LAND O LAKES® Butter, melted

2/3 cup finely crushed seasoned croutons

1 1/2 cups of pasta sauce, heated

 

Preparation

Line cookie sheet with parchment paper, or spray with CRISCO® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray. Separate dough into 5 biscuits. Split each biscuit to make 10 rounds. Press out each biscuit half to form 3-inch round.
Sprinkle each biscuit round with cheese to within 1/2 inch of edge. Top each with meatball. Bring up sides of dough over meatball; pinch edges to seal. Brush rounded tops and sides of dough with butter; coat with croutons. Place, seam side down, on cookie sheet. Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Place appetizer pick in each biscuit-wrapped meatball to form meatball pop. Serve with warm pasta sauce for dipping.

Back To School Party Ideas – Super Easy!

May 13th, 2014

backtoschool

Looking for some fun back to school party ideas!  I’ve been busy this year with some fun projects.  I hope they inspire you to create something wonderful!

Pencil Star Bursts

Custom Crayon Wreath

Back To School Party – “Welcome Back” Sign

Back To School Party Fun Centerpieces – Tissue Ball Topiaries

Teacher’s Gift Pencil and Crayon Vases

Back To School Snack Attack – Great after school or party snacks

 

Back To School Party – Welcome Back Sign

May 12th, 2014

welcomeback

This year, I was in charge of the Back-To-School Party for my 2nd grader!  It was so much fun and I created some fun centerpieces as well as an adorable wreath for his teacher that is all the rage on Pinterest.  Since we had a buffet at our party, I thought it was cute to create a fun little sign to jazz the buffet up.  Here is my sign and how I made it.

First, I purchased pencils and crayons at Target.  They were at an incredible price of $1.00 for 24 pencils and .50 for a box of crayons.  Then I needed a round object.  Any will do.  I found a lid from a whipped topping container.  But really, any round object will work… even cardboard.


welcomeback-01

 

Then, I simply hot glued my pencils in a star burst pattern on the lid.  Then, filled in the empty areas with crayons.  Everything needs to be hot glued very thoroughly.  Lastly, I hot glued the round chalkboard to the pencils, added a ribbon bow, and wrote “Welcome Back” on the chalkboard.  Done!

 

 

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Halloween Chocolate Covered Strawberries

October 30th, 2013

For my son’s School Halloween Party, I wanted to do something different, but didn’t want it to be too much work.  So, I decided to customize store-bought cupcakes.  All I did was dip some fresh strawberries in candy chocolate coating and sprinkle them with Halloween sprinkles. I placed each strawberry on top of the cupcake and  added a gummy worm… because all kids LOVE gummy worms!  The party snack was a success!!!

halloweenstrawberries

(Guilt Free!) Easy Sweet Pumpkin Dip

September 29th, 2013

I LOVE this pumpkin dip… why?  Because I can control how much sugar goes into it and customize it.  So many recipes have multiple sweet ingredients which makes the sugar content difficult to gage.  With this recipe, I can add as much or as little sugar as I want.  Serve the dip with fruit, or even baked tortilla chips sprinkled with cinnamon  and you’ve got yourself a winning party dish for any fall party… year after year.  You’ll love it!

RECIPE

1/2 cup Canned Pumpkin (you can add less or more, depending on your preference)
1/2 large container of Light and Fit vanilla yogurt
2/3 container of Sugar Free Cool Whip (or any sugar free whipped topping)
1/2 cup of Sugar (this is the part that you can customize based on how sweet you would like it… you can use less or more)
1 tsp of Cinnamon (optional)

Combine all the ingredients and put in a bowl (or a hollowed out small pumpkin), I use sugar free and “light” varieties because I like to see how much sugar I’m putting in the dip.  If this doesn’t matter to you, you can get the sugared varieties and skip adding your own sugar.  Chill for at least 1 hour and serve with apples or sweet crackers.

 

pumpkindip