Game Day Foods

In just a few weeks we have the Superbowl game between the Patriots and the Giants.  Whether you’re a football fan or not, it’s the perfect opportunity to have some friends over and spend some time together enjoying each other’s company and some good food!

Appetizers

Nachos: greek, pork.

Dips: spinach and artichoke, chili cheese and beer, healthier tex mex, edamame and avocado.

Bites: fried deviled brie, garlic and parm stuffed mushrooms, cheesy pepperoni, herb cheese puffs.

And More: spicy popcorn, sweet and spicy peanuts, pizza twists, pita triangles.

Dinner

Sandwiches: mini subs, turkey roll ups.

Pizza and more: spinach white, spicy pocket pies, bbq chicken, turnovers.

Wings: grilled chicken with cucumber yogurt sauce, asian style, buffalo with blue cheese.

And More: healthier super bean vegetarian chili, stuffed baked clams.

Dessert

Strawberry shortcake nachos

Cheesecake brownies

Strawberry margarita cheesecake minis

Frozen neapolitans

Drinks

Superbowl punch

Lime sherbet

Aloha shandy

Spicy red beer

Honey ginger limeade (non-alcoholic).

Do you have plans for the Superbowl?  If so, what are you planning to serve?

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Tea Time

I love tea, my favorite being hot tea!  While I drink tea every day some days it’s fun to do something a little special and in honor of Hot Tea Month, let’s throw a tea party!

There are lots of great tea companies out there, two of my favorites are Bigelow and Amanzi.  They both have lots of amazing flavors and their teas taste delicious.

If you’re not a fan of plain tea, you should try Chai Lattes, they’re a little more like hot chocolate than tea.

With our tea let’s have some food!

Winter fruit salad

English tea scones

Spice tea breakfast bread pudding

Tangy tea cookies

Whole wheat shortbread cookies

Pastel petits fours

Fruited tea buns

Lemon cherry tea buns

Cherry cream cheese tarts

Mini jam tarts

Tangerine tea cakes

Southern tea cakes

Carrot tea cakes

Mini almond bundt cakes

Tea sandwiches

Ham and egg tea sandwiches

Turkey tea sandwiches

Have you had a tea party before?  Share your success suggestions below.

Creating with Thanks

January is national Thank You month here in the USA.  There’s been a big focus over the past few years in being more thankful in our day to day lives, not just in November, which is a great thing!  It also presents lots of opportunities for creatively showing our thanks to others.  Let’s talk about some of those creative ways.

1-the most obvious way is with thank you cards.  If you create and sell greeting cards, you should have several great thank you card options for people to purchase in a selection of quantities.

2-write the word “thankful” on a piece of jewelry or two.  The word alone can remind those who see it, as well as those who wear it, that there are things to be thankful for.  It can be written in beads on a bracelet or engraved into a pendant for a necklace, or on the band of a ring.

3-in all your correspondence make sure you say “thank you!” to those who purchase or show an interest in your work.  It shows you appreciate them even if they don’t actually buy from you.

4-give gifts or have an appreciation program.  It’s easy to include an extra card and envelope, or little instruction book on caring for their new jewelry, or discount card for a next purchase with someone’s order.  People love getting gifts, even if they’re something little because it shows you care about them.  They don’t have to be big or cost much but it’s those little things that can make a difference.

What creative ways can you show your customers (and family and friends) that you appreciate them?

Creating for Health

January is “stay healthy month” and I believe that creativity is intertwined with health and that it’s impossible to be healthy without a good dose of creativity.  So let’s talk about what it means to be creatively healthy.

Physically:
You don’t have to like yoga, you might prefer biking or pole dancing.  The important thing is that you find what works for you and you’re excited to do at least one day a week.  Food is one of my favorite ways to be creative (as you can tell from my blog posts), and its one of the things that Americans need to work on: creating food that’s good for the body as well as appetizing.  Don’t be afraid to get creative and try new foods and recipes!

Mentally:
There are tons of things coming at us from all directions that aim to “break us” mentally, and many of those things (like hurtful words) do a good job getting in.  You have to know what’s right for you, and who should or shouldn’t be in your life.  You don’t have to be with people who make it their life mission to tear you up, there are tons of great people in the world.

Spiritually:
Personally I think that life is so much fuller when you’re living and working for a bigger purpose.  Just like with creativity, spirituality is something that is lived on both an individual and a group level.  I don’t grow spiritually the same way you do, nor should I; just like we don’t both create in the exact same way.

Emotionally:
I believe that creativity and doing creative things is essential to having good emotional (and mental) health.  Creativity has this magic way of opening us up to receive new things and gives us an opportunity to be free in ways that we usually can’t express ourselves.

It all comes down to one thing: find what works for you!  Maybe you were lucky and your first creation turned into a best (multimillion dollar) seller, but that’s not how it worked for most of us.  Just as you put energy and time into your creating, I encourage you to put some energy and time into making healthy choices that fit you and your life this year.

What one area do you need to work on most?

Snow Friends

A couple of weeks ago I shared some of the talent of some of my Feature Friday friends when it came to love and hearts.  This week I’m inspired by the flurries outside my window, so here are some of their snow inspirations.

Laurie’s snowy river painting, a cardinal in the snow, snowy river, snowy old mill, snow on a covered bridge, penguins all lined up.

FaeryMoonGoddesses’s dangle snowflake earrings, snow queen quartz necklace, snowflake charm bracelet.

Hockmangirl’s moss agate and snowflake jasper earrings.

Honey Bee Affairs snowflake crocheted coasters.

More Than Colors amazing array of snowflake stained glass, including an icy icicle and pink polkadotted snowflake.

Juergen Roth’s red berries in winter, snowy bamboo, and winter tide on plum island photos.

Garden Vibe’s winter solstice earrings and sparkling evening snowflake earrings.

Dale Anne Potter’s gooseberries in snow.

I’m super excited for the upcoming artists and creative friends in this year’s Feature Friday posts.  If you’d like to be featured, comment below, or let me know on Twitter.

Soup’s On!

I don’t know about you, but there’s nothing I enjoy better than a bowl of hot food for dinner in the winter.  Here are some great soups, stews, chilis and more that you can serve at your dinner table, or your next party.

Soup & Chowder

Creamy mushroom and chicken soup, tortilla soup, cheese tortellini soup with cannelloni and spinach, mulligatawny, Italian wedding soup, chicken noodle soup with ginger, spring vegetable soup, creamy tomato soup, meatball minestrone, spicy chicken corn chowder, buffalo chicken soup, lentil ham soup, teriyaki beef noodle soup, smashed potato soup, barley vegetable soup, asian turkey and rice soup, lasagna soup.

Chili

Turkey chili, slow cooked chili, false alarm vegetable chili, vegetarian black bean chili, and a ton more bean, chicken and beef chilis.

Stew

Beef stew, Moroccan lentil stew, spicy pork stew, firehouse chicken stew, beef stew with butternut squash, pork stew with polenta, white bean and sausage stew, veal and pepper stew, Moroccan chicken stew.

Bisque

Butternut and ham bisque, butternut bisque, shrimp bisque, mushroom bisque, lobster bisque, corn and crab bisque.

I think I’ll try a bisque tonight, what are you cooking?

Snow Delights

We’ve seen a couple of snow flakes here in the northeast USA the past few days, and it got me thinking about catching snowflakes on my tongue as a kid.  So while I don’t have snow to try today, and can’t send you any, here are some recipes that will remind you of snow and animals who love snow!

Sweet tortilla snowflakes

White chocolate snowballs

Doughnut snowmen

Baked snowballs

Defrosty the snowman

Penguin cupcakes

Tropical snowballs

Hot vanilla

White hot chocolate

Polar bear cubcakes

Warm vanilla milk

Minty bark

Hawaiian snowballs

White chocolate snowflakes

Meringue snowflakes

Marshmallow snowmen

Snowball cupcakes

Mexican snowballs

Winter wonderland cupcakes

Winter white vegetable soup

And some alcoholic options:

White russian

Coquito

Eggnog martini

Classic eggnog

Brandy kissed snowflakes

What things that are white do you enjoy making?