Monday, September 1, 2014

On Labor Day...

Happy Labor Day, friends!  This is just a reminder that Pray for Me Monday is still going on every Monday on my Facebook page!  If you need a friend to pray for you at any time (even if it's not Monday!) just let me know.  I post a reminder there each week, so follow my page if you'd like to join in.

This blog is not here just so I can have a place to blab about decorating, parties, and DIY--although we do a lot of that here.  I'm here to connect with you all.  And I've been amazed at the friends I've made here.  Even those of you whose faces I may never lay eyes on-- we can meet right here and help each other.  Do you have a prayer request today?  Let me know.

And here's a promise for you on this Labor Day, straight from the Heavenly Father, for those of you needing this right this moment.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Tailgating and Party Ideas for the Big Game!

Football fans, the season is here!  Here in East Tennessee, our Vols play their first game of the season this weekend, so that means there will be a lot of tailgates decked out in orange and white.  Here are a few ideas I shared on our local morning news show this morning, and maybe they'll inspire you, too!

I already posted my Big Orange Gameday Salsa recipe this week, which you can find here if you missed it.  It's a great way to add a punch of orange to your table.  Serve it up in small cups along with mini bags of chips to make it easy for your friends to enjoy!

I bought these bags at Hobby Lobby and just added black poster board circles so I could chalk them up with some team spirit!

And since it's all about football, how about these football cones to hold some fresh fruits and berries?  Place them in a bucket of popcorn for a great edible display!

To make these, just melt some milk chocolate almond bark, dip the tops of the cones, then place them on wax paper to harden. 

Once they're set, use a clean artist's brush dipped in melted white chocolate to paint on the laces!

And remember this chocolate chip cheese ball recipe I shared a while back?  Just form it into a football and paint some white chocolate on the top for a perfect game day dessert!

And keep friends refreshed by serving up some sweet tea in a cute football cup!  Make these yourself by adding strips of white Duck tape to a plain clear cup or mason jar!  (Inspired by these I found on Pinterest!)

If you like the cute grass table runner like the one I have here, you can find it here on Amazon.  Awesome deal and they come 2 in a pack!  I only had to use one for this table. They can stretch or bunch up according to your preference!  The papers, ribbons, and fabric all came from Hobby Lobby.

Here are a few more items that may come in handy for your tailgating party (these are affiliate links):

I hope these ideas inspire you!  Here's a clip from my segment on our Local 8 morning show live from Neyland Stadium this morning!  Thanks to the crew there for having me once again.  It's always a fun time!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Big Orange Gameday Salsa

It's almost football time here in Tennessee, and we take this time of year seriously.  This town gets painted orange as the season draws near.  We're getting ready for the Vols' first game coming up this weekend, and our local channel 8 morning show has asked me to be a part of their pep rally show live at Neyland Stadium this Friday morning.  I'll be sharing a few tailgating ideas, and one of them is my fresh and yummy Big Orange Gameday Salsa.

Even if you're not a Vol fan (bless your heart), I think you'll like this sweet, flavorful twist on traditional salsa, especially because it's so easy to make!

Here's what you'll need:

1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup canola oil
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

1 can mandarin oranges, drained
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1 large yellow pepper, diced
1 can white corn, drained
1 4-oz jar of pimentos, drained
2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro

Start by combining the first 5 ingredients in a small saucepan and bringing them to a boil.  Then remove from heat, and let the liquid cool completely.  

Slightly purée the mandarin oranges in a food processor or blender, then combine them with the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl.  When the liquid mixture has cooled, pour it into the bowl and stir ingredients well.  Chill in the refrigerator for at least a few hours before serving.

This makes about 5 cups of salsa.  Serve with your favorite tortilla chips as a yummy and colorful addition to your party table!

I'll share more of my tailgating ideas soon!  Are you ready for some football?