The Best Punch Ever, Hands Down!

The Best Punch Ever, Hands Down!

Many years ago, my mom, Mama Gabe, did a reception for my cousin’s senior piano recital. (The man has mad skills.) Anyway, she made this punch. TO DIE FOR! I have never been a punch person because it all has soda and I am one of a tiny minority of people who cannot stand carbonation. But this recipe had so much fruit in it that I could eat the “mash” (non-soda part) by itself, like Italian ice. This is no three-ingredient wonder, not that there’s anything wrong with those kinds. But oh my goodness, is it worth the effort. It is now a staple of our Yuletide season and I will never make another.

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Organizing The Second Mile

Organizing The Second Mile

If you have looked at the “Stay” page on our website, you know that we have a cottage in our backyard listed on Airbnb. (You can now book directly through us, by the way.) But to give our visitors a great experience, we like to offer a few extras that you would see in hotels, such as coffee service, snacks, bottles of water, and my favorite, chocolate.

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For Your Next Brunch- Breakfast Enchiladas

For Your Next Brunch- Breakfast Enchiladas

Several years ago, I was in Michigan at the annual gathering of my college mates. Our hostess, Holly, made these delicious Southern Living Breakfast Enchiladas. Since then, I have made them for literally dozens of guests and I think I have received compliments every time. They are super easy and you make them the night before. They are great for a crowd and leftovers are perfect for a quick morning meal. Serve them with some fruit and breakfast is DONE!

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Sides for a "Big Feed"

Sides for a "Big Feed"

When entertaining large groups, we have a favorite go-to comfort food: smoked pulled pork. To be honest, THAT is a secret recipe but I will tell you that it involves, brine, rub, and about 14 hours in the smoker.  However, I am happy to share two of our favorite side dishes which help make this meal a real feast.

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Creating Community at the Table

Creating Community at the Table

When I was in high school, I had the privilege of being an exchange student in Munich for a month. My host family, the Pfeifer’s, introduced me to what became my favorite meal there, raclette. It was so simple that it was genius. It consisted of boiled potatoes, sliced cheeses, seasoned salt and the essential raclette maker. So, what is it, exactly? A raclette machine is a two-tiered electric appliance. The top has a griddle that can be used for cooking or just keeping things warm. The lower tier has a heating element and individual non-stick trays. You simply put slices of cheese on your tray, melt them in the machine, pour that over your potatoes, then sprinkle it all with seasoned salt. A certain someone in my life thinks you could just stand next to a microwave and get the same result. If your desired outcome is melted cheese, of course he is right. But I don’t get the same sense of community by waiting in line at the Radar Range. (Yeah, that dates me.)

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Garden Themed Brunch

Garden Themed Brunch

Recently I was part of a committee at church that was tasked to give a brunch in honor of a ministry we whom we partner. We had table hostesses to make people feel at home and great programming that fit the theme. For the rest, we did have a budget, albeit slim, but enough to do something beautiful to honor these special people. This is what we did.

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Getting The Most Out Of Your Party Buck

Getting The Most Out Of Your Party Buck

When you go to the “discount” party store, do you almost pass out at the cost of the paper goods, decorations, and party favors? I am always shocked how much I can spend on themed merchandise. If you have felt the same way, I have some budget-friendly ideas that will help you create a festive atmosphere for happy kids.

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