Cocktails with ROF: Sangria!

12 Jul

There is nothing like fresh Sangria in the summer!  Well, a margarita is pretty good too.  Sure, you can buy the premixed Sangria drinks from Costco, and honestly, it’s pretty good.  But ROF has been making his own Sangria for as long as I can remember.

See video – filmed from vacation in Long Beach Island, New Jersey.  Recipe below.

FRUIT NEEDED:

1 peach

1 plum

3 limes

1 lemon

1 orange

Cut up all fruit into chunks and squeeze the lemon, lime and orange juice into the JUG.  

BOOZE NEEDED:

1 cup of sugar

1.5 cups of Brandy

1 cup of Triple Sec (orange liquor)

2 bottles of cheap red wine/merlot

Mix everything together.  Serve over ice with a splash of club soda on top and a lime or lemon.  ENJOY!!

The Best Steak Recipe You’ll Ever Make: Hawaiian Ribeyes

10 Jul

Last year, ROF and I went to Hawaii with some close friends.  It was my first time in Hawaii and it didn’t disappoint.  You know how people talk a place up for so long and it either disappoints, meets expectations or exceeds expectations?  This exceeded expectations.  Awesome.  

While there, ROF made his delicious Hawaiian ribeye steaks that we grilled. I’m dying for you to try these steaks.  Your mouth might start to water as mine did when you watch this. 

The recipe is below.  If you try it this weekend, please send me a picture! 

Hawaiian Ribeye Steak

the marinade:

1 cup of sugar

3 small cans of pineapple juice

1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar

1 cup of soy sauce

2 inches of fresh ginger, chopped

1 small white onion, chopped

the meat:

4 (12-16 oz) bone-in ribeyes – look for good marbling of fat throughout. 

Mix all ingredients well (with a whisk) except the steaks in a large bowl.  Add two steaks to a large ziplock baggie.  Carefully divide the marinade between the two bags with the steaks.  Marinate the steaks for between (but no longer!) 12 and 24 hours in the refrigerator.  

Grill the steaks over medium-high heat for about 8 minutes on each side for medium-rare.  Baste the steaks on each side with the marinade.  Enjoy!

4 Ways to Entertain With Ease

10 Jul

This quote is the key to entertaining. Memorize it.

I love to have people over.  The whole experience should be smooth, fun and lovely not only for your guests – but for you. Why? Because whether you are having friends over for dinner, your spouse’s colleagues around for a happy hour or a baby shower for 30 – the whole point of the event is meant to be… fun. You want your guests to be left with the feeling of inclusion, warmth, and happiness.

Good luck, I can hear some of you sigh with a harrumph. Entertaining freaks me out, some of you might say. Well, here are 4 things to remember:

1. START WITH WHAT YOU LIKE AND KNOW

It’s no secret that my husband likes cocktails. He likes planning out a signature drink for the evening, buying the ingredients, setting up a bar, getting the ice and serving our guests when they arrive. That’s just one of his things. He starts his dinner party prep there.

I like music and candles. I like creating playlists for the kind of mood I want to create. Maybe it’s a yoga night or we’re going up north or having drinks on the beach– I want to create a feeling with what people hear when they arrive and what they smell – that’s where I start.

Where do you start? Here are some examples to help you decide:

  • Cooking or baking
  • Cleaning and/or decorating
  • Paper and invites
  • Music
  • Place settings
  • Landscapes
  • Planning
  • Making cocktails

Figure out what you LOVE to do and start your planning there.

2. DON’T STRIVE FOR PERFECTION, NO ONE CARES AS MUCH AS YOU DO

Ina Garten said in one of her books something I’ll never forget.  She and Jeffery were young and broke but that didn’t stop her from having people over. She didn’t have the perfect napkins and matching place settings and her furniture was dated, but she confirmed that no one cares about stuff like that.

If you wait to have everything “perfect” you’ll let life pass you by.

Be driven by your guests need to feel welcome, not by your need to impress.

3. PLAN EVERY ASPECT IN ADVANCE + DON’T DO IT ALL

The more you plan, no matter how big or small the event, the easier it is to pull off an awesome party.  Take the time to think everything out – top to bottom – start to finish – write it all down, design a menu, make a grocery list.   I’ve designed an outline for you to use to help. 

Another tip is don’t feel like you have to do it all.  Have friends bring the drinks or food.  Get party platters for appetizers that are already made or just put out some nuts and cheese.  Check out some EPIC party platters here.  

4. YOU SET THE STAGE 

You can either be like this:

or like this:

I Love Lucy!

More reads on entertaining here, here and here.

3 Wonderful Classes I’m Taking

9 Jul

This morning, I’m on vacation!  I’m sitting outside on the back porch of a house we rented in Long Beach Island, New Jersey.  It’s 6am east coast time and I’m watching the sun rise over the dunes in front of the ocean. I put some pics below.

Now that I’m on vacation, along with sitting at the beach (already got red) and eating off-KETO diet, I love spending the early morning hours learning.  I just finished lesson 7 of a great class I’m taking online with the app and website called Creative Live.  Joyce Maynard is teaching “Writing Your Story” and it’s excellent!  It’s on writing memoir-style.  Being old, I’ve forgotten what it’s like to actually LEARN from a teacher.  So it’s a real treat to learn from an excellent, passionate teacher.  Check out this website if you’re interested in photography, art, design, music, money & life classes.  Varys in cost.  This class that I’m taking is fantastic. 

I also joined Masterclass which is badass learning for all kinds of interests.  Once you belong to it, you can take as many classes as you want.  Classes by Malcolm Gladwell (!!!), Alice Waters and a ton of other experts teaching in their field of expertise.  I finished Gordan Ramsey’s class and I’m on to Alice Waters.

12 Quotes to Point You in Right Direction

7 Jul

Best Rose Wine for Summer

5 Jul

I could give you a top 10 list but I just don’t have it in me. 

I also can’t find the little symbol to go over the “e” so it is Rose-A not Rose.  But I think you get it.

Ok. Not going to use terms like peachy finish or well-balanced either.  This is me.

Just get it.  Go to Total Wine or google it.  At only $8.99 a bottle, it’s simply the best.  At that price, get 2.  Or a case.  Thanks Curt for introducing it to us.

I would buy it and drink it with this, this or this.

How to Tie a Summer Scarf

3 Jul

The other day, I cleaned out my scarf drawer that contained literally THOUSANDS OF SCARVES.  I folded them somewhat the same and made the drawer look so nice.  But in going through all those scarves, it made me mad to think I could only wear them in the fall or winter.  Why not summer? ok, maybe not the heavy plaid ones, but the light linen ones?  But how do you wear one when it is hot out and you really don’t want something heavy around your neck?

First of all, this video is a little dated but my favorite video ever on folding a scarf.  Yes, at one point in my life, I did follow along and tie all the ties.  Subscribe to Wendy’s IG or blog – she’s awesome.

Second of all,  these are some great looks!

 

This is from The Darling Detail.

 

Then there is this from GlamRadar.com

I’m digging it.  Might give it a try.  Will probably last 5 minutes around my neck, just sayin’.

I LOURVE this one by Lands End!  Plus I think I’m going to buy the scarf!

There you go!  Now go and be safe this mid-week holiday celebration.

Top 5 Drinks to Mix When Hot

30 Jun

My boy, ROF, is a cocktail mix master.  It is a balmy 90+ degrees here in Mad Town and here are some cool drinks you can make tonight or for brunch this weekend.

The Blood Orange Martini

The Tidal Wave

Rum Punch

Jalapeno Margaritas (The Best! No Mix!)

Bacardi Rum Cocktail

And if you need something to eat along with all these drinks, throw some of these DELISH steaks on the grill!

 

 

 

3 Articles to Help You Be All You Can Be

26 Jun

While it’s important to be present in the current moment, as I’ve mentioned before, I can’t help but to (constantly) read articles, blog posts and books on best practices. More specifically, best practices on being your best self.

Here are 3 of the best.  Click on the title to take you to the article.

30 Behaviors of Unstoppable People

By Benjamin P. Hardy

A lot of people are good at what they do. Some are even elite. A select few are completely unstoppable.

This is How to be Super Productive Every Day Without Losing Your Mind

By Thomas Oppong

Extremely productive people know the difference between urgent and important.

This 1 Habit Separates Successful People From Everyone Else, According to Warren Buffett

By Elle Kaplan

Who knew?

4 Great Breakfast Recipes

25 Jun

4 GREAT BREAKFAST RECIPES

There ain’t nothing like a good egg.  My family loves eggs and we make them many different ways.  My sister, Katie makes a mean fried egg.  She can even flip the egg in the pan without a spatula.   She’s cool.  ROF scrambles eggs like no other.  it’s so simple yet so good.  They are just the right consistency and filled with the previous night’s leftovers.  Like salmon and cream cheese.   My specialty?  Poachies.  

breakfast

 

breakfast

 

Sometimes I like to venture past eggs and here are some great recipes!

First is blogger Oh Joy’s rainbow pancakes. aren’t these the best idea ever?  especially if you have kids.  Pop over there to get the recipe that is in video format.

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Second, is something that just made my mouth water a little bit.  Baked baguette french toast by the Dash and Bella blog.  I haven’t made this yet but think I will when I have my next overnight guests.

baguettefrenchtoast

For the third recipe, I’m heading back to eggs.  Check out these awesome egg cupcakes.  Another great company breakfast.  Thanks dine & dish for this recipe!

0b8a1e2d9145dfb6299e5879530fcb85Lastly, how about these amaretto french toast bites by the awesome sweet paul?  Delish!

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