Lenox Halloween Sale!! Expired

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If you are looking for a great deal to start or add to your china collection, Lenox has a wonderful Halloween sale right now! Get 30% off of your purchase using this link: Extra 30% Off Halloween. Just use code HALLOWEEN.

My mom started collecting the Christmas plates in the pattern Holiday, which I love! It’s always so special to use these plates each Christmas.However, if you’re looking for Thanksgiving instead, they have that, too!

If, though, you want something more classic that will work for any holiday, y’all likely know my top pattern is Autumn.Right now the 5-piece plus BONUS set of Holiday china is only $99.95 (reg. $200). With the 30% off, it’s only $69.96! However, to get 4 place settings, right now it’s reduced to $224.95 from $492.00. With the 30% off, you pay only $157.47 or $39.37 for each place setting. That is a phenomenal price for bone china.

Happy Halloween!

Dressing For Dinner

Wow! My husband and I went to dinner with a group of close friends tonight, and it was the most amazing experience! For those of you who aren’t local to me, we live in a small town, and fine dining experience are few and far between. Due to this, we don’t have many chances to get dressed up for dinner. Tonight, though, felt like a magical occasion, and I loved it.

The Oaks Bed & Breakfast is a recently refurbished home turned into a bed and breakfast. As if this wasn’t neat enough, every Thursday (starting today) they’re having Date Night. (Side note: It’s reservations only.) The meal is set, other than the main protein, which adds a unique element to it as well.

Tonight we had cold cucumber soup, ceviche on a bed of avocado, choice of salmon or stuffed flanked steak accompanied by mushroom risotto and pesto zoodles, melon and mozzarella salad and, finally, chocolate and caramel cheesecake. Every bit was outstanding. It took a while to get through all of the courses, which is exactly what I wanted. I LOVE when dinner is an experience. We also took this time to dress up a bit more than we normally do, and I didn’t realize how much I had missed that.

Additionally, we had great, quality time with friends sans kiddos. 🙂 To top off a perfect evening, we got to sit in the coveted private dining area, which reminded me of the private table in Commander’s Palace.

If you’re within driving distance of Sulphur Springs, Texas, I highly recommend getting reservations for this weekly treat!

Dinnerware Essentials

Hi, everyone! I’ve received a few emails asking about china vs. everyday dishes, extra pieces, etc. So, I thought I’d give you MY suggestions. Please remember to do what’s best for your family, your budget and your entertaining preferences.

I strongly encourage china. It doesn’t have to be fancy. It doesn’t have to be new. I’ve found complete sets at antique stores for $100. (Note: I’m kicking myself for not getting them, BUT I hope it made its way to a home of someone who appreciates it). I just enjoy and appreciate the added “specialness” it brings to an ordinary occasion. As a child, I remember using it and feeling so grown up. As an adult, I love a pretty table. It’s your preference, though. I encourage 12 place settings of the dinnerware you will use at Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc. If this is everyday dinnerware, that’s great. If it’s china, that’s great, too. For argument’s sake, let’s go with china. So, in short, 12 placesettings of china. What makes a place setting? At absolute minimum, a dinner plate and a dessert plate (can double as a salad plate). I prefer to also have a bread plate, coffee cup and saucer. It’s not mandatory, but for my personal collection, I have bowls, as well. We actually use these more than I ever expected to, particularly at the holidays. Aside from 12 place settings, I strongly encourage a large serving platter and a serving bowl. I have a lot of serving pieces for my wedding china (Lenox Vintage Jewel). However, for my “fun china” (shown in picture above – Lenox Autumn), I just have 8 place settings. No serving pieces. I found a good buy on ebay and just went with it! For that pattern, I’m comfortable mixing in glass bowls, crystal and white platters, etc. Do what makes the most sense for you.

I don’t find a need in completing a set all at once. For my everyday dinnerware (Pfaltzgraff  Yorktowne), I have collected pieces over the years after receiving our initial plates and bowls as wedding gifts. Pfaltzgraff (like many companies) keep patterns pretty much the same and just add and take away particular pieces each year. So, certain candlesticks I’ve found are from certain years, and the same goes for most of my additional pieces.

As you can tell from the photo above, our casual dinnerware is just that. Casual. This fits our lifestyle for most days.

I hope this post helped you if you had questions on what to get, how many pieces, etc. Thank you for asking the question! As always, thank you for reading. 🙂

Classic Cocktails

Throwback Thursday!

In honor of it being Throwback Thursday, we’re talking about classic cocktails today! My all-time favorite drink is a sidecar. It’s reminiscent of Prohibition era days, which I’m particularly fond of. I think I was born in the wrong decade.

In fact, when my husband, parents and I bought an older building in our town, there were stories of it being a speakeasy during the Prohibition. And y’all know how much I love stories. J

So, to make my favorite classic cocktail, the Sidecar, you would use a martini glass. Then, mix together:

  • 2 oz. Cognac
  • ¾ oz. lemon (I sometimes do just ½ an ounce)
  • ¾ oz. triple sec.

Shake well with ice. Strain into martini glass. Super simple and clean.

My husband, on the other hand, is a whiskey guy. Apparently yesterday was National Bourbon Day (I had no idea). His classic cocktail is an Old Fashioned. To make you need:

  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • 3 dashes bitters
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • Water or Club Soda
  • Fruit garnish (usually a slice of orange and a cherry)

Muddle the sugar and bitters together with a sprinkling of water or club soda until the sugar is dissolved. Fill lowball glass with ice. Add the bourbon. Garnish with choice of fruit.

What I love is that we typically have these liquors on hand, and most don’t require anything super difficult.

Another classic cocktail is a simple mimosa. This is the perfect brunch drink, but it’s also just nice and refreshing in the summer. Simply add your desired amount of champagne or prosecco (the latter is not super classic….but it’s still delicious) to a champagne coupe or flute. Then, top with orange juice. For an added *extra*, add two drops of orange bitters.

I think it’s nice to have a signature drink for entertaining, and I hope these have given you a few ideas!

Want to get a start on the perfect glass? Check out these reduced-price glasses. Regularly $34.

 

Or check out the myriad of cocktail glasses available here:
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