tips to throw a dinner party

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If you love cooking and entertaining then one of the best ways you can incorporate the two is by throwing a dinner party. A dinner party is perfect for getting all your loved ones together in one place and spending an evening eating, drinking, laughing and catching up. It also gives you a chance to extend your culinary skills and to create dishes that you wouldn’t normally cook. This could be anything from a mushroom gravy recipe from Feasting at Home to whipping up some canapes and more intricate desserts. Here we have put together some top tips for throwing a dinner party at home…

Think about the group you want to invite

The last thing you want for your dinner party is to have a group of people that don’t get on or have anything in common. You want the conversation to be easy and for everyone to get on well. It could be that they have never met, but they have a lot in common, this would be fine as the talk will still flow easily and they will all have a good time. If you are inviting a lot of people, also think about who to sit next to each other.

Do as much prep the day before as you can

On the evening of your dinner party, you don’t want to be running around in the kitchen the whole time. Try to do as much recipe prep ahead of time as possible so you just need to do the actual cooking on the day. Prep includes chopping the vegetables and measuring out the ingredients. It can be fiddly and take time but on the day you will be so grateful that you have done it before the day of the dinner party so you can spend time with your guests. 

Ask about dietary requirements beforehand

Don’t forget to ask about dietary requirements ahead of time. The worst thing will be if you have prepared a dish with no alternatives and someone is unable to eat it. It could be that they are allergic to something, are a vegetarian or vegan or that they really don’t like one of the ingredients. Ask people in good time so you can ensure you have a backup option ready in case it is needed.

Get plenty of drinks in

A dinner party is a great excuse to crack open a bottle of wine or two and get a bit merry together. Make sure that you get enough bottles in as once you are in the full swing of the party it can be disappointing if you run out and have to either stop or do a late-night dash to the nearest supermarket. You could ask guests to bring a bottle with them to avoid this.

These are just a few top tips for how to throw a dinner party. By following these you will ensure you have the best chance of your success and your friends will be talking about it for months to come. 

** This was a contributed post.

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special delivery

Special Delivery 1-1So far, this week has been nothing but pleasant surprises. They began on Monday night when I received two amazing parcels. The first was a highly anticipated one, and was discussed in this blog post here. The second was one that I had completely forgotten about, thus rendering it the best surprise bar none.

If you guys can recall one of the earliest posts from the Home series, you will remember reading about a stand-up fellow by the name of John, who showed us a snippet of where he lived, both on land and at sea. John is such an incredible photographer, one that I first came across on Instagram but have been following on his own blog as well. On Monday night, I was lucky enough to receive a print of his in the mail that was taken on one of his many voyages. Once again, I cannot stress enough just how important Instagram has been to me over the last year. From meeting new souls, to selling store items, to receiving positive messages and slowly honing in on my own photography skills, this community has been incredibly beneficial in so many ways.

With my good mood remaining, and the realization that summer is not yet slowing down, the following morning I could not stop thinking about one of my only hats that I currently own. It was also currently missing. With no trace of it for over a year, I concluded that it must be hidden in a box that we had yet to unpack from our many moves. This particular accessory is very important to me. I had first come across my black derby four years ago in Denver, CO, yet I didn’t actually purchase it until I had returned to Canada and could not get it out of my mind. I believe that my true longing for it went much deeper, however. Growing up with a love for Casper comics, I had always adored Spooky and his ‘doiby’. Unbeknownst to me, I wouldn’t actually own one until twenty years later. When I returned home yesterday morning I had decided to search for this hat. I opened what was the first of about thirty boxes, and there, buried at the very bottom, was my derby. I can promise you that I said a little prayer of thanks to whatever gods of luck have been on my side lately. 

Of course there have been a few downs, as well as more ups, but all in all it’s turning out to be a really special week. If only each and everyone of us was always this fortunate! Lady Luck, please don’t leave me now.

<3

Emory

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we could all use a friend like holly (noisette)

Tea1I recently received a parcel that was sent to my store office. When the building’s landlord told me that I had package waiting for me, my first reaction was that one of my items was delivered unsuccessfully. Already mentally preparing to contact the buyer, rewrap the item, and send it back with a discount for the inconvenience (my mind works quickly), the last thing that I was expecting was a little box that was addressed to me, from Holly.

Tea2Sometimes I forget that readers actually take in the aspects of my life that I blog about. Sure, if you read HSB, you probably know a little something about the house that I’m building, or that I own a few pets, or that I’m married. Those of you who truly follow my life, know more about me and it than I give you credit for. Not only did the card have antlers on it and a beautiful handwritten note, but what was inside was one of my all-time favourite foods in tea format. Plus, it came from halfway around the world. Who does that? Only the sweetest person ever.

Tea3I certainly don’t know what the true measure of a friend is. I think that varies for each and every individual. However, Holly is a pretty damn good one. On days like this, I am once again thankful for the blogging community in regards to introducing me to some really great people. Click on Holly’s blog, and say hello. Honestly. We could all benefit from having a friend like her.

<3

Emory

a day in the life (two)

BeFunky_001.jpgOn October 18 2013, I published my first Day in the Life. That’s almost one year ago exactly. I love these types of posts, and I especially love when other bloggers take part in them. They’re so interesting. Even if that individual doesn’t do anything particularly interesting that day, their own take on, and how they relate to the world, is what makes it so intriguing.

I randomly chose one day last month to highlight here today. Below is a list of each event as it unfolded:

7:00 am. Get up. Take the dogs for a walk.

8:00 am. Get back, throw on clothes, pack the dogs up, and leave.

8:15 am. Drive into town.

BeFunky_002.jpg9:00 am. Arrive at the Vet College and drop of Holly for her all-day appointment. When I get back into the vehicle, I call my mum and bawl my eyes out. I return a missed call from my contractor. I’m needed at our new home, which is out of town. I start making my way out there with Truman.

BeFunky_003.jpg9:45 am. Arrive at our building site and start making decisions on lighting, electrical, appliances, fencing, decks, and anything else that my contractor needs an answer for.

10:15 am. Building inspector arrives. I introduce myself and then leave. 

PicMonkey Collage10:20 am. Drive down the street, and take Tru for a walk. I hang out on the dock for a bit while Tru plays in the water. It’s going to get up to 31°C that day, and it’s already a gorgeous morning.

BeFunky_004.jpg11:00 a.m. Head back home.

11:45 am. Get back and start making breakfast for myself and Tru. We’re starving! 

12:15 pm. Tru and I finish eating. I haven’t heard from the vet in regards to Holly, so to distract myself I clean the entire house and then get ready for work later that night. 

BeFunky_007.jpg1:45 pm. I get overly impatient, so I call the Vet College. Holly is ready to be picked up. I make the 30 minute drive into town and to the college for the second time that day. 

2:15 pm. Grab Holly, load her up, and leave to go back home. We’re both so relieved to be with one another again. 

2:45 pm. Get home, feed Holly, and take her outside for a stroll around the acreage. Once back inside, I begin to cook Geoff’s supper in addition to getting the dog’s meals together. 

3:15 pm. I finally have about an hour to myself. I use that time to start a blog post and work on my store. I’m trying to keep busy, but am having a hard time concentrating.

BeFunky_008.jpg4:15 pm. Make my final trip into town for my shift at the library. I forget to take supper.

5:00-9:00 pm. Work at the library. Later in the evening, I continue writing my blog post on my break. Working my other jobs while at work, it’s something that I’ve come to master over the past year.

9:00 pm. Finish my shift. I’m exhausted, but it’s time for the gym. First though, I have to make a quick stop at my store.

BeFunky_0010.jpg9:15 pm. Arrive at my store. Grab what I need, then head to the gym.

9:30 pm. Get to the gym and try to have a good workout.

10:15 pm. I’m too tired to do anymore. I get changed, and make the drive back home.

10:45 pm. Get home. Eat supper. Blog some more.

12:00 am. Bedtime. I’m dead. 

Not everyday of my life looks like this. For the last few months however, they have followed a similar suit. I mostly wanted to write this because up until I stopped caring, I was getting tired of my in-laws and friends complaining that they don’t see my husband or I anymore. When we tried explaining that we were busy, their response was that “everyone is busy.” Yes, to an extent. 

On this particular day my mom told me that she didn’t know how I kept it together. When she initially said that, I didn’t have a response. Now I do. I am able to keep it together because I have the support of my mom, my step-dad, my husband, my sister, my brother (via phone), and my competent contractors. If I didn’t, I know that I would have already fallen apart.

BeFunky_006.jpgWhether it’s a photographic or written hourly journal of one’s day, the A Day in the Life posts offer such an intimate portrait of that particular blogger. I challenge my readers to do the same, and then to link their publication here, to HSB! Let’s start a movement! Or at least, another take on an already established series. ;-)))

<3

Emory

Hello 2014, Goodbye 2013

IMG_HSB_1.jpgNow that it’s officially 2014, I feel like I can breathe a little easier. As each year draws to a close, I can’t help but feel as if something major is coming to an end. It’s an unsettling feeling for me, and so when the new year rolls around, it brings much alleviation.

Like every year, 2013 brought many new changes. These are some of them:

PHOTO_1.jpg 10.31.53 PM1. The birth of Hello Scarlett Blog occurred in June. This was my first post.

1400740_739212962760511_911879269_o2. My daily dose of laughter came from Timmy Alvarez’s YouTube channel. Here is one of my favourite videos from Timmy Fell Down The Well.

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 10.29.13 AM3. My weekly dose of love and laughter? ‘Girls‘. I cannot wait for Season 3!

on-the-road-dvd-cover-924. The movie that I completely fell in love with was ‘On the Road‘. Consequently, I found a new celebrity crush in Garrett Hedlund.

youth-in-revolt-poster-big5. However, my favourite scene from any movie this year was Michael Cera doing what he does best.

country-god-or-the-girl6. The CD that I had on repeat was K’naan’s ‘Country, God or the Girl‘. 

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 10.10.13 AM7. HSB can also be found on YouTube! It all began with this Reclaimed Shelf DIY video.

1.jpg8. As for real births, my niece came into this world on 09/09/13. You can visit her birth announcement here.

DSCN55149. For some reason, with a birth usually comes a death. My Baba passed away only 6 days after Emelia was born. Since then, I often mention her in my posts. You can read a bit about the passing of this great woman here.

DSCN496810. As you can see, the blog had many ups and downs over the last 6 months. My most successful DIYs were probably the ‘Lace Flower Pots‘, ‘Bathroom Reno‘, ‘Chicken Wire Cupboard‘, ‘Photography Backdrop Stand‘, ‘Tree Branches‘, and ‘Snow Globe‘. 

IMG_10.jpg11. Last month, I was chosen to be featured on one of my favourite blogs! This was a new experience, and one that I hope to repeat often. Starting this year, I am going to be having my own monthly feature. You will have to keep reading HSB daily in order to see when and what it will be.

HW_IMG_1-1.jpg12. As for Geoff and my little pet family, I only grew to love them more with each new day, week, and month. I could write a whole blog post about the many things that we did as a family, but I don’t want to bore all of you! I can only hope that 2014 will bring about more love, and maybe some changes as well.

PHOTO.jpg13. Last but not least, I am so utterly grateful for this new blogging community that I have been introduced to through HSB and WordPress! I love how warm and enthusiastic other bloggers are, and have made so many more friends since I started blogging here in June.

Huzzah to all of you!! Happy New Year and Happy 2014!!

Sign-2013-5-18-12.20.12

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