Holiday Series: Thank the Host

I plan on posting gift guides, holiday decorating tips, and festive recipes in the next few weeks (’tis the season and all…) but before we tuck into presents and fun, let’s not forget the hosts who put everything together. If you’ve ever hosted a large gathering, then you know every bit counts–whether it’s the people who stay to help clean, pitch in on the cooking, or come early to help set up–any and all help makes a world of difference.
This holiday season, however, I hope to go beyond helping in the cleaning and cooking realm, and make sure every host I encounter knows how much I appreciate their effort with a little token of my gratitude. Holiday Series: Thank the Host
As I think about a hostess present, I consider several things. Is this a family member or friend? Do I know their hobbies, tastes, and interests? Is this my first time at their home? All of these factors collide and provide insight as to what might make an perfect present. Nonetheless, it should ideally be something the host would not normally buy for themselves (perhaps it seems too frivolous a lá a Jo Malone candle) but fits their tastes to the extent of your knowledge. If I know someone who loves cheese, or simply entertains a ton, a fancy cheese plate and/or knives would make a meaningful and useful gift they’re sure to remember. Cool and eclectic tokens of gratitude, like rose gold playing cards, will certainly stand out from the pack with a hint of luxury and cool. Fun, festive barware always works for someone who entertains–from fun glasses to unique coasters, and beyond to copper pieces. If all else fails, finding food items that are part decadent, part interesting, is always appreciated.

There’s something for everyone out there. As you brave the cold and crowds, may your holidays be full of fun and love this year, and may your hosts always know the bounds of your gratitude!

Oscar Buzz

March 2nd will be here before we know it, and with it comes the Oscars, which means red carpet glamour and movies galore. Even if you haven’t seen all the films yet (I’m certainly behind), there’s no reason not to make a fun night of it. Any excuse to celebrate right? There’s more than one way to enjoy the Oscar buzz, so to improve any movies or awards shows you might watch, I rounded up my favorite cocktail recipes from around the web and listed them below for you to enjoy! Simply click the cocktail to find the recipe source.

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An old school champagne cocktail.

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You can never go wrong with a French 75 -sparkling wine, lemon juice and sugar.  Perfect.

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If you’re looking for something a little more exotic, try a ‘Dark and Stormy.’ The combination of dark rum, lime, and ginger beer is not only potent, but also pleasant.

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Of course, if you’re looking for something to remind you that warm weather isn’t too far away, this Limoncello Collins will definitely hit the spot.

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Mojitos are utterly delicious–and customizable. For some inspiration on how to make yours extra special, look at Cuba Libre’s extensive list of mojito flavors. 

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Lastly, you can never go wrong with a basic Martini. If basic isn’t your thing though, there’s no reason you can’t experiment with different flavors!

This list is by no means exhaustive, but it’s certainly a start. Of course, don’t forget your favorite barware!

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Be sure to fill out an Oscar Ballot  with friends, and then compare them after the awards are over–winner is entitled to bragging rights and a drink of their choice, at the very least.