Archive for 2017

5 Simple Tricks For A Successful Last Minute Wine Party

24 May

Wine lovers everywhere rejoice! Get ready for a wine party! National Wine Day is on May 25th, which happens to be a Thursday in 2017. This year, you have back-to-back days to celebrate wine. #ThirstyThursday indeed.

Sure, some of us have had this day marked on our calendars for months. Eagerly counting down the days until we get to tell our boss that we have an honest to goodness wine holiday to celebrate (thanks, Bacchus). But we’re sure just as many people are only hearing about this now. Well, surprise!

Don’t worry about not being prepared, our wine experts have some proven tricks for making sure you can have the perfect wine evening. Yes, even if you are going to buy your bottles on the way home.

Wine Party! How do I start?

First things first, invite friends and family. Who doesn’t love a midweek get together? As an added bonus, ask everyone to bring a bottle of their favorite wine. Now, you get to mix and match!

Now that you know the guest list, it’s time to shop! Get some wine. Any wine. It’s a holiday, you should treat yourself to the good stuff. Maybe the good stuff and something new?

Now what?

1. Make sure your wine is cold

Unless you are at a fancy store with a rapid wine chiller, you are likely going to be grabbing a warm bottle of wine. Don’t fret, just run over to the frozen fruit section. Wine and fruit go together better than peanut butter & jelly. If you’re not sure what to get, here’s a handy list of tasty suggestions:

  • Prosecco pairs perfectly with strawberries.
  • A glass of Chardonnay is even sweeter with peaches.
  • Riesling is just a little more fun with blackberries.
  • And frozen grapes go with just about everything. Though usually you’ll need to freeze those yourself.

2. My wine opener broke!

Don’t panic, and please don’t try to break the bottle open. There are a ton of easy to follow YouTube videos on how to open wine, so you can do a quick Google search. One of the simplest methods is to push the cork into the bottle with a wooden spoon, and TA DA wine. Or, if you don’t like the idea of pushing the cork in, you can get it out with a pair of kitchen scissors. Very carefully open your scissors and push one blade in. Use the handle as leverage to twist the cork out, and success!

3. I found a bottle of wine under the sink and I have no idea if it’s safe to drink.

First off, yes wine can go bad. Don’t think that just because it’s supposed to ferment a little means it’s safe from spoilage. We recommend you sniff it to check. If it smells moldy, musty, like wet cardboard or dog, throw it out.

If it smells like stewed fruit or heavily like a box of raisins, chances are it’s turned as well. Wine that smells like sherry, but isn’t sherry is also not good. A strong scent of vinegar or sulfur smell (rotten eggs) are the two most obvious red flags.  If you aren’t quite sure, it’s best to play it safe and get a new bottle.

4. My friends brought too much wine and now I have bits of leftovers

You can always freeze your leftover wine. The cubes are great for adding to recipes or chilling any new wine you get. Just make sure you label what kind of wine it was that you froze.

5. I have a bunch of leftover wine bottles I don’t want to just toss.

If you’re crafty you could repurpose the wine bottles and corks. Pinterest is full of ideas for just this problem. The easiest way to repurpose them is to use them as vases or candle holders. More complex crafts often involve cutting glass so proceed with caution, and probably a friend to help. Plus, if you’re having a wine party, then why not have a wine bottle party, too? People can bring ideas and supplies to turn your bottles into memories.

If nothing else, you can always recycle the bottles. A lot of states pay for glass. At the very least, you can feel good knowing that your bottle is being re-purposed, hopefully into another wine bottle!

However you chose to drink your wine, make sure you drink it safely and have fun! If you have more tips for making a last-minute wine party a hit, be sure to share them with us.

You’re ready to throw a wine party – What now?

  • Order a wine gift for your friends who couldn’t make it. It’s a great way to stay in touch with far off loved ones you rarely get to see.
  • If you’re looking for drinks with more of a kick, try these fun cocktails we shared for Saint Patrick’s Day.
  • Make sure you share this blog to help your friends learn how to handle wine emergencies. At the very least they’ll know National Wine Day is real.
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6 Ways to Avoid Mother’s Day When It Hurts

12 May

Mother’s Day isn’t for everyone, in fact the exclusion is right in the name.  A lot of people find Mother’s Day painful, or even offensive. After all, traditionally it doesn’t include people that have acted like moms to children whose real mothers weren’t around for various reason. It doesn’t really embrace nontraditional mother figures of any kind. For those whose mothers or mother figures have passed, Mother’s Day serves only as a painful reminder of what they’ve lost.  Finally, for those who can’t have their own children it is a bitter reminder of what they’ll never have.

Sometimes Mother's Day leaves a shadow on your heart

So how do you avoid a holiday that is being advertised everywhere? TV commercials, the internet, even the beloved candy aisle isn’t safe.  When everywhere you turn there’s a reminder of Mother’s Day it can feel like the world doesn’t care about your feelings. But that isn’t true: you’re not alone, and we get how much this holiday can hurt.

If you want to avoid reminders here are some easy tips for making May a bit more comfortable. Keep reading…

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10 Mexican Gifts We Can’t Live Without

01 May

Mexican Gifts: Mexico's flag & culture

Cinco de Mayo is one of the most notable Mexican gifts to the world, and it’s almost here! This vibrant holiday commemorates Mexico’s victory over the French army at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. What a perfect excuse for drinking an extra margarita, eating delicious foods from Mexico, and celebrating the wonderful things you have Mexico to thank for. Keep reading…

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10 Mother’s Day Tips to Piss Off Your Mom

27 Apr

And how to avoid them.

Mother's Day Tips - Avoid these things to make her happy

Mother’s Day is all about thanking the wonderful woman in your life that seemed to have everything together. This year, our mission is to help you be ready (like mom always had dinner ready to go even when she was tired). We decided the best way to be prepared is to give you Mother’s Day tips learned from previous epic mistakes.

For instance, many holidays creep up and catch us unaware, and the biggest mistake is forgetting the whole holiday!  Mother’s Day seems to have a special set of skills designed to catch us off guard. We all do it – forget about her special day – only to promise that next year will be better. We’re going to make sure this year one when everything falls into place.  To help, here’s your reminder that this year Mother’s Day is on May 14th.

And without further ado, here are sure-fire ways to make your mom mad on Mother’s Day (or really any day), and our recommendations for avoiding them. We’ve also got tips to say you’re sorry if you stumble into one of these all-too-common traps. Keep reading…

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11 Travel Destinations for Gluten Free Foodies

20 Apr

When your diet calls for gluten free foods, international travel can be tricky. To help make planning your next dream vacation easier, below you’ll find 11 destinations with great options for gluten-free dining, how to pronounce “Gluten Free” in the local language as well as a few restaurants known for their gluten free options and delicious eats.

But don’t stop at the bottom of the infographic, we’ve got more restaurants listed in the post below.

International Gluten Free Travel Ideas for Foodies

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Keep reading…


Easter Traditions Around the World

06 Apr

Easter is a religious holiday when many celebrate spring and Jesus Christ’s resurrection. However, Easter traditions vary from country to country and even family to family. This year, Orthodox Easter and Catholic Easter fall on the same day, April 16th, providing the perfect opportunity to take a deeper look into Easter traditions around the world.  Many people enjoy sending Easter Baskets to friends and family, so knowing a little about how they celebrate can help you pick out the perfect surprise.


Keep reading…

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5 Differences in Easter Celebrations vs. Passover

31 Mar

Spring’s return means it’s time for two of the most significant religious holidays people can name! So we’re here to tell you the differences between Easter celebrations and festivities for Passover. The frequent overlapping of the Christian Holy Week and eight-day celebration of Passover merits attention. Like Christmas and Hanukkah, Easter and Passover are equally important and get a lot of attention. Side by side, they bring to light the deep structures of Christianity and Judaism.

Want to know what the main differences between Catholic Easter celebrations and Jewish Passover are without going into too many details? This video below will give you a pretty good idea.

Keep reading…

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St. Patrick’s Day is NOT About Irish Cocktails

16 Mar

St. Patrick’s Day is NOT About Irish Cocktails: Here are Some Anyway

I want to make it clear that St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland is NOT about drinking Irish cocktails half the night (the Irish do that other days of the year). And it’s certainly not about green beer – there is NO green beer in Ireland – and it would probably be considered an insult to great beer.

Irish Cocktails aren't only for St. Patrick's Day

In Ireland, St. Patrick’s Day is more like Thanksgiving in the US. Families go to church together to celebrate the patron saint of Ireland (that’s Saint Patrick). Afterward, they often enjoy a big family meal and a day off to relax. There might be Irish cocktails, but that’s more about Irish people making a drink than it is about a holiday tradition.

That having been said, I know some people are preparing for their St. Patrick’s party by stocking up the liquor cabinet. So, I thought I’d share some of the authentic Irish cocktails and drinks I actually had while I was in Ireland during Holy Week once upon a time. Keep reading…

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8 Useful Lunch Box Life Hacks for Kids and Adults

10 Mar

If you wonder if packing your lunch is worth it, try it and find out! You’ll save on buying lunch every day, and you’ll enjoy delicious and healthy options you actually like. Plus, if you have children, you’ll be able to pack lunch for the whole family in one very rewarding session. We have 8 simple lunch box tips for grown-ups and kids that will help you pack your own lunch easily every day. Besides, March 10 is a National Pack Your Lunch Day, and it’s the perfect reason to have your lunch box ready to take to work, school, on a picnic, or where ever you spend the day.

Save money, save time - pack your lunch! Keep reading…

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Healthy Pancake Recipes for Your Family

07 Mar

If weight gain wasn’t an issue, then we’d probably eat pancakes for breakfast and lunch, and maybe between meals. For those folks who are addicted to fluffy pancakes, with melting butter and a decadent drizzle of syrup, we have good news! Since we’re in love with pancakes, but not the extra pounds, we’ve got healthy pancake recipes just in time for International Pancake Day on March 7th. It’s the perfect excuse to dive into a stack of steaming hot pancakes! But there’s no need to stick with the classic buttermilk version. It’s a hearty option for breakfast, but not the healthiest way start to your day.

Tips for Gluten Free and Healthy Pancakes

People who are allergic to wheat gluten, or who have other dietary restrictions, can’t include traditional pancakes in their diet! But our healthy pancake recipes make sure they too have options. Pancakes do not have to be full of carbs, or calorie guilt. When you learn these recipes, you’ll be able to indulge in heavenly homemade pancakes while on a diet, and it will be as easy as making regular buttermilk pancakes. These healthy pancake alternatives are low fat, delicious and absolutely guilt free. See for yourself! Keep reading…

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