New Year’s Eve Plan

New Year’s Eve 2004, I was getting ready to move to Phoenix.  I watched “Waiting to Exhale”.  The movie takes place in Phoenix/Scottsdale, AZ.  It starts on New Year’s Eve, and spans a year in the life of four friends, and ends New Year’s Eve the following year.  Since I was moving here, it had double meaning.   Since then it has become my New Year’s Eve Movie.  This Christmas I bought the movie to add to my collection. (No need to keep renting it every year.)

I also want to go to the theater to see “New Years Eve” a movie that came out this holiday season.

Then finally to top it off tomorrow, I plan to watch “2012”.  Ok, yeah I know, I’m hokey.  But I love to put a theme together, and this movie combination sounds like a winner.

So for my New Year’s Eve Movie Fest, I will have Champagne, a Lobster Tail, an appetizer food fest, and veg out with my favorite New Year’s Movies.  Whatever you do, “Trip the Light Fantastic”,  Have Fun and be Safe

10,  9,  8,   7,   6,  5,  4,  3,  2,  1 . . .

Happy New Year!

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Published in: on December 31, 2011 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

Happy Hour @ 1102

Champagne Punch

 

With tomorrow being New Year’s Eve, here is a simple Champagne Cocktail that is light and festive, and would be great to serve at your New Year’s Eve Celebration. 

Ingredients

  • 1 thinly sliced peach
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup Simple Syrup
  • 1 bottle champagne or other sparkling white wine

Directions

  1. In a pitcher, combine ice, peach, raspberries, blueberries, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Slowly pour in champagne or other sparkling white wine.

3 Days til 2012

Published in: on December 30, 2011 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

End of the Old – Awaiting the New

I started this blog a year ago, planning for it’s subject matter to be about the lost art of socialization.  For me to assess my 2011 blog goals and set new ones for 2012, I had to go back to my first LOST blogs and see what it was I’d planned to say.

I thought I had strayed far away from my original goals . . . but when I looked back, I wasn’t too far off.  I asked some questions that shaped this blog. . .

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2011 Goals

 “Why don’t people entertain any more?”    – “It Cost too Much”

“Why is the same crappy food served at every event?” – People don’t really cook anymore – or don’t really know how to cook.

Does NO one respect social etiquette anymore?   No RSVP’s, No thank you’s, never on time, proper Dress Code – “What is Black Tie”?.

Finally – Friendships/Relationships.   Do people know how to be a friend?  The differences between women’s friendships and men’s friendships.

Finally – Me – There will be a lot of me wrapped into this blog.  My love of Friends, Books, Movies, Entertaining, and People.

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Movies – I didn’t see many movies this year – All of the ones I saw we pretty much in the last month of this year.

So Next year my goal is to see 1 movie a month.

Books – I read alot.  I got a Kindle last Christmas and this year I read over 75 books.   So I don’t think I need to set a goal for next year, let’s just say I’m going to continue reading.  Let’s just see if I can break this record for next year.  I will maybe review a few and give my suggestions or favorite.  Maybe some other Kindle Users to share with.

Food – Well I did a  little on food.  Especially for the Holidays.  I took some pictures of interesting meals.  But for next year, I’m going to be more direct on cooking.   I’ve wanted to get better at making soups and sauces.  So I will be starting a feature on Wednesday’s  entitled Soup’s On @ 1102.   I will feature a soup recipe and review my results from last week recipe.  I should be able to come up with 2 or 3  soups worth keeping.

Entertaining – Cocktails

What’s a party without a good drink!  So we’re definitely keeping Happy Hour @ 1102.  New cocktails on Fridays, giving us new cocktail to try at home, which will make you a great mix master when you do have a party.

I’m sure that’s more than enough to keep me busy with LOST.  Hopefully, I will have some events with my friends, and we can focus on party planning. Anything that can keep your interest in 2012.

Published in: on December 29, 2011 at 11:03 am  Leave a Comment  

Christmas 2011

MERRY CHRISTMAS

Happy, Happy Christmas, that can win us back to the delusions of our childish days; that can recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth; that can transport the sailor and the traveller, thousands of miles away, back to his own fire-side and his quiet home!

  ~Charles Dickens, The Pickwick Papers, 1836.

We’ve planned and now it’s here!  Enjoy!

This is a day to store some memories, some that will come back to you year after year.  So make an effort to do something memorable, to share something of yourself, to enjoy the look in someones face as they open a present.  To enjoy the taste of some delicious food.  To feel the of buzz of a great holiday cocktail.

Start a tradition, do a puzzle, read a book, or go to a movie.  Remember this blog is about socializing, entertaining . . .

Good Food, Good Fun, Good Friends!

Happy Birthday Dre! (Christmas Baby)

Published in: on December 25, 2011 at 7:11 pm  Leave a Comment  

Christmas Eve

It’s the Night Before Christmas and all through the house . . .        How are you spending your Christmas Eve?  Now that the shopping is all over and done with, I hope you are spending time with your friends and family.  We’ve been counting down for almost two months, and by this time tomorrow it will be all over for another year.  So, take time to enjoy the the holiday and remember the reason for the season.

Hopefully, you had a party or two that you shared with, friends, co-workers or family over the past few week.  I will just share a few of mine, to remind you that despite the hustle and bustle, there was some fun that was had by all.

My First Holiday Event was our companies Christmas Party.  We had a great venue, good food, and time spent with friends that we talk to often, but don’t see everyday.

Fun  & Dancing

The Smaller House Party

And then the office/store Party, with our Cookie Day!

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So, as I turn in for a good nights sleep, to wait for Santa to stop by my place.  I hope you all had a Happy Holiday Season, and to all a Good Night.

Published in: on December 24, 2011 at 11:35 pm  Leave a Comment  

Christmas Puzzle

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Well it’s Christmas Eve, and I’m happy to say, I finally finished my Christmas Puzzle yesterday.  I was getting a little worried.  I started this puzzle November 27th, and it took me longer that the 2 weeks it took me to finish last years puzzle.  But, it was still fun and an entertaining thing to do.

I’m going to post this at Midnite, Phoenix, AZ time.   I still have another post, I want to get in for Christmas Eve.  So be sure to come back later, for the Party.

1 Day – 24 Hours til Christmas

Published in: on December 24, 2011 at 12:01 am  Leave a Comment  

Happy Hour @ 1102 – Candy Cane Cooler

 

Ingredients

For Infusion:

  • 2 cups fresh mint leaves, de-stemmed
  • 1 bottle quality vodka

Directions

Thoroughly wash mint leaves and place in a decanter or jar. Empty vodka into container and muddle slightly to release the essential oils. Store in a cool, dark place for at least 3 days – longer if you want a stronger taste.

For cocktail:

  • 1 tbs. crushed candy cane or peppermint candy
  • 1 1/2 oz. mint-infused vodka
  • 1/2 oz. B&B (Benedictine and brandy)
  • 1/2 oz. half-and-half
  • Ice
  • Peppermint stick
  • Mint sprig for garnish
Published in: on December 23, 2011 at 9:00 am  Comments (1)  

This Christmas

For me it’s 4 days before Christmas, and my last day off before Christmas.  So I need to overdose on my Christmas Movies.  Today’s Choice is THIS CHRISTMAS – Starring Delroy Lindo, Mekhi Phifer, Regina King and Chris Brown.

This is the story of the Whitfield Family.  The Mother, affectionately called MaDear, greatest joy is to have all her children home for Christmas.  The family owns a dry cleaning business, which arouses some heated discussions among the children.

The Opening Credits play to “Santa Baby” as the members of the Whitfield family are introduced.  Youngest Brother that every calls baby,  and older sister Lisa, who is the responsible one and is always nagging the other sisters.

Quinton, the oldest, and black sheep of the family, is ultimately the child MaDear longs to be home for Christmas the most.  Joe Black, who is MaDear boyfriend and secretely lives with her – Or so she thinks it’s a secret.

Like with all big Families, there are many secrets, that some are privy too and others are not.  Of course, like most secrets, they have a way of coming out.  And thus the family drama begins.  But this story is an interesting mix of Family dynamics, where almost everyone has a secret.  The unfolding of those secrets make for a funny and heartwarming Christmas Movie.   The music is great, with a couple good songs sung by Chris Brown.  I highly recommend it.  I’m adding it to my Christmas Collection!

3 Days til Christmas

Published in: on December 22, 2011 at 10:37 am  Leave a Comment  

Christmas Cookies

I love cookies – would rather have them over cakes, pies or chocolate.  But I don’t like to bake.  I’ll cook “real food” all day long, but baking takes a level of patience, and a bunch of messy, sticky ingredients, that I’d rather not tackle.

But the image of Christmas cookies and the smell of someone baking in the house go hand in hand with my Christmas Fantasy.  So I decided I wanted some cookies this year.  I even orchestrated a cookie exchange at work (Partly as a way to ensure that I have lots of cookies), but that reward requires I also provide some cookies.  So, I’m baking cookies – and if you’re Baking Cookies you may as well do 2 or 3, right?  So here goes.

Well the Christmas cookie I usually bake requires no baking.  It also has an ingredient that works for me, liquor.  I often make rum balls for Christmas.  I usually make them the day after Thanksgiving, and put them in a can to ferment until close to Christmas.  Ummmm good.  So, a couple weeks ago, I did my rum balls and they are just waiting to eat.  But I realized if I’m going to give those away, I need to make another batch.

One of my favorite cookies are Mexican Wedding Cakes, which I’ve never made.  I’ve always had someone in the office who made them.  So, I decided it was time for me to learn how to make those myself.  So, I googled it!  (My new best friend  lol).  Found several receipes – will have to give that a try.

Finally, my BFF Jennifer, who does bake, gave me several receipes that are suppose to be simple and easy, and a big hit.  So today is baking day – I have all the ingredients out and ready to go.

Right off the Bat - Too Much Stuff

So I started, I made a BAR cookie.  Simple enough, a cookie crush, nuts and a candy topping.  It went fairly well.  Didn’t take too long.  I didn’t heed Jen’s one warning not to let it cool too long before you take it out the pan and cut it.  It’s a lot harder later.  I went and watched a movie, before cutting it – so I had a little issue.

If you like sweet and/or candy you will love these.  They are a dentist’s dream.  But they are tasty.  I cut them into tiny squares, and put them in a tin to share.

Next thing was fudge – another thing that I like in small doses, but I find too sweet to eat much of.  Don’t know how easy this was, the fudge set up and starts to harden way to quickly for my pace.  But I did manage to get it in the pan, for what is suppose to look like a wreath upon presentation.  We’ll see.  (Several days later – I decided that I was not taking it in wreath form, and cut it into slices to put in goodie bags for my co-workers)

Finally I made chocolate bark.  It is colorful, and very pretty.  Like the fudge, chocolate hardens, and all while I’m trying to add stuff to it, like nuts, peppermint candy canes, and pretzels.  It’s cooling for real now, so we’ll have to see how it turns out.

(Follow-up:  This turned out real good.  The White Chocolate was the best.  I will add this to my Christmas list of things to keep.)

After all this, what I realize, is I still don’t really have any cookies?!?!?!   So, I guess I have another day of baking to go.  Otherwise the office will get the old Fake & Bake.

Well, I got the ingredients for my Mexican Wedding Cakes, and put those together.  They weren’t bad,  fairly straight forward, easier than the fudge, in my opinion.  So I baked, while sampling and tweeking my Christmas Sangria.  I was up to 3:00 a.m.  But I got all the various goodies into the bags and ready to take to work.

So my final assessment, is it took me about 3 days to do all this.  My kitchen is still a wreck , with sugar and sprinkles all over the floor.  Baking takes lots of utensils.  Bowls, spoons cookie sheets  aauuuggh!  Lastly when I got through, I was almost sugared out be fore I started.  So I may have to save a few to have my own personal cookie day next week.

But they were all a big hit – and I found 2 items that I will keep and add to the Christmas Tradition – But really folks I’m done baking for another couple years.

Eat Drink and be Merry

4 Days til Christmas

12 Days til New Years

Published in: on December 21, 2011 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

Wish List – These are a few of my Favorite things!

Christmas Shopping – this is usually what stresses people out.  Now if we would all just prepare our wish list like we use to do for Santa, life for our loved ones would be easier.  (And you wouldn’t have to look so disappointed on Christmas morning).   This is a good tradition that you can institute with your children and families.

My kids use to start in November, looking through the toys r us ads  My daughter, the oldest, use to cut out pictures of stuff and tape them on paper to give to me early.  She then proceeded to organize her 3 younger brothers with their list.  It was a project for them that had them looking in the Sunday paper for the ads, and at least a hour of occupied activities.  I then had a list and pictures to take to the store.  It was wonderful.

So, here we go, I challenge you to make your Christmas Wish List.  Just a few of your favorite things.  It also gives me something to do, so I can do my Christmas Shopping, and refuse the urge to shop for myself.

Movies –  You all know I love movies.  I spend Christmas Day at the theater, watching the new releases.  So Movie Passes are always a good gift for me.  Also movies to add to my DVD collection.  A few that I want to add are:  Waiting to Exhale,  American President and Grey’s Anatomy Season 7.

Gift Cards -This is an easy f ix these days, espeically for last minute shoppers.  It wonderful, that grocery stores now have a large selection for us all to choose from.  The nice thing about gift cards, is that in January or any other time when I am low on money, I can treat myself, with a meal, or a little shopping trip, that brightens my day and reminds me of the person who thought enough of me to buy me something. For me – these are just a few of my favorite places  – and Gift Cards work just fine!

Starbucks –  I can always enjoy a Grande something, either in the morning, or on a sunny afternoon sitting outside, using wi-fi.

Amazon – I have a kindle and am a avid reader.  An Amazon gift card, helps keep me in books, and it also is a good source for me to get some of my DVD’s to add to my collection.

Red Lobster – I love Red Lobster, and I often treat myself to a treat of theseafood, and of course bisquits.

My favorite everyday store is TARGET.  I can browse through there for hours, and it is never a problem finding something I want – from clothes, to household stuff.  This is always a winner with me!

Last but not least – This girl always loves shoes.  DSW – a DSW gift card will get squeals of delight.  Cause nothing says Merry Christmas like shoes.  :  )

So relax, you now know what will bring a smile to my face and I’m sure you have some ideas for the last minute people on your list.  But next year get there wish list early.  Now relax and have some Egg Nog, Christmas is almost here.

5 Days til Christmas

13 Days til 2012

Published in: on December 20, 2011 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment