Friday, October 28, 2011

WINTERS COMING! It's Entertainment Time Again. Hooray!

DEEP SNOW 2010-11


"OUR" CABIN OF CHOICE
Prospect Hill B & B

I've enjoyed summer at the families' lakeside retreat and fall at the beach.  Now its time to look for a nice warm fire to sit in front of and plan dinners and parties for friends and family. We are not that fond of the cold and snow, anymore, but we love having guests into our home in the wintertime.

We start planning with a review of what has and has not worked well in past winters.  I'll share some of those times with you.



WE LOVE THE CHRISTMAS SEASON
A cheery, decorated home and cards from friends!

JULIE AND FRIENDS
 We enjoy having several dinners and parties over the Christmas season.  In addition to family members, Julie has a group that comes a cackling on Super Bowl Sunday.  No, they don't watch the game, they eat and eat and eat!  Oh yes!  They giggle a lot.  Our dining group has their Progressive Dinner at Christmas time, going from home to home for each course of a large meal.  Yes, we do put out cookies for Santa.  Want to play it safe, you know!

IN KEEPING WITH THE SEASON


OUR DINING GROUP
Spread Eagle Tavern & Inn
We enjoy a winter weekend in a Bed and Breakfast with family or friends.  This year we are going to The Spread Eagle Tavern and Inn hosting our daughter, Kimberly, and son, Mark, with their spouses.  Several times, in past years, Julie and I have enjoyed being together at Prospect Hill Plantation Inn in Virginia.  Last year, we visited with a recently discovered cousin who lived nearby.  Still another year, we hosted two couples at The Inn at Honey Run in Ohio.  We really enjoy going to B&Bs a couple times a year.

A ROMANTIC DINNER!

On Valentine's Day, we host a very special dinner for three couples.  It is a dress-up affair.  The girls get to wear their most gaudy trinkets.  The guys will most  certainly buy a corsage for their "sweetie".  In the past we had the guys write a love poem and read it on demand, after which the girls would describe either their first kiss or how he proposed.  THIS WAS HILARIOUS!  Unfortunately, we have been doing this so many years, we have run out of couples and know all their stories.  Last year we changed it and started recycling everyone. Won't say how we changed it because they will be reading this blog and I don't want to give away our new plans.  TRY THIS, YOU'LL LIKE IT.  This will be an all-time favorite for your friends.  If you want to know more on this, email me--address in my profile.

Until my left hip failed me, and had to be replaced, Julie and I hosted a Mid-Winter Hoedown for friends and family.  We'd prepare bar-b-qued ribs and chicken with all the trimmings for over a hundred people and shout out "YA'ALL COME NOW, YA'HEAR?"  They have always come.  We have extensive chaffing dishes for the food, coolers for the drinks and a great sound system for calling the square dances.  Can't do this this year, I'll still breaking in my new hip.  But this is a great idea you might want to consider.

So, you don't call square dances?  Look around, someone in your neighborhood does.  Can't afford the food or hall rental?  Get a few others to go in with you.  As I always told my kids, in life, "NEVER TAKE NO FOR A FINAL ANSWER!"  This can be a great pickup for people with the winter funks!  And, you'll have fun.

SOUTH SEAS ISLAND SEA FOOD BUFFET
I said above I'd share what did and what did not work.  Last winter we had one of the most enjoyable dinners ever.  In the dead of winter we had a SOUTH SEAS ISLAND SEA FOOD BUFFET.  This was expensive but we purchased the food over a period of time as we found it on sale.  We totally stripped our living and dining rooms, making them into a sea side dining area and a Head Hunter's Lounge.  We covered the walls with a sea side mural and brought in lots of tropical plants.  We built a small Tiki Hut with sound and light and had a professional singer, in costume, sing island songs.  There was a dozen to enjoy the lobster, crab, clam and you name it.  Did they love it?  ARE  YOU KIDDING?  Over the course of a long evening, they consumed two gallons of Pina Colada and a gallon and a half of Bahama Mamas.

SOUTH SEAS ISLANDS SEA FOOD BUFFET 2010

Where was the fly in the buttermilk?  It took a week of hard work to set up the two rooms and two weeks to put everything back in place.

This does not include the time and effort to beg, borrow and steal all the props and plants

CONSIDER THIS ONLY IF YOU ARE A GLUTTON FOR PUNISHMENT LIKE JULIE AND ME!  
YES, IT IS THE SEASON FOR ENTERTAINMENT, YOU GET THE PICTURE. 

My friends, the good life does not take money, IT TAKES TIME AND PLANNING.  We buy our food far in advance and on sales, ALWAYS!  We shop over the long time in dollar trees, yard sales and, yes, thrift stores.  Want beautiful, unstained, red table cloths and napkins for your Romantic Dinner?  You can spend big bucks at a department store or pennies at the thrift store.  Laundry them well and you are set.

John 10:10 says that Jesus came that we might have life and have it more abundantly.  Take him up on that!  We do and you can.  He did not say that "the rich" could have the more abundant life.  TIME AND PLANNING, THAT'S THE KEY.   Rich or poor, He gave us each 1444 minutes a day, use your's wisely.

WHAT DO YOU DO IN THE WINTER TIME THAT IS NEW, DIFFERENT AND EXCITING?
I'm always on the lookout for new ideas.  (My email address is in my profile)

May an Angel from up on high watch over you and your's!


GOD BLESS THE USA

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