Category Archives: Entertaining

Father’s Day Gift Ideas

It’s June.  The flowers are blooming, the weather is finally nice (for most of us).  Instead of being woken up by my son at 5 am every morning, I now get woken up by a chorus of birds at 4 am.  These are all signs that spring is in the air.  That means that Father’s Day is right around the corner.

If your husband is anything like mine, he ignores all the prompting for clues of what he may want. I think in reality, if we aren’t getting him another piece to his train set (that just sits in the basement and never gets used), then he really doesn’t care what he gets. And, if your Dad is anything like mine, after 37 Father’s Days he pretty much got everything you can imagine.  So it’s always a challenge coming up with ideas.

Here are some of my favorite past presents; quirky and fun, but surpringly useful:

1. SuckUK magnetic bottle opener – This was the all-time best and most-used present.  I got it for my husband a few years ago and he uses it everyday.  There’s no fumbling around in drawers to find a bottle opener. And it’s got an awesome name.

2. Electric Fly Swatter – This is one of those presents for the Dad who has everything.  It’s especially nice if he hate bugs.

3. Blooming flower tea – I got this for my dad, who loves tea, a few years ago.  The tea actually tasted kind of gross, but it looks really cool.

4. Bottle opener flip flops – I actually have a pair of these, and so does my brother.  If he didn’t already have a pair, this is what I would get him for Father’s Day.  They are so handy when you’re at the beach or a barbecue.

5. Digital meat thermometer – Although, my husband still refuses to use it (he thinks he will just know when the steak is done), it is very handy.  Being a vegetarian, I’m not really interested in his undercooked burgers, but I use the thermometer to make sure he doesn’t get himself or anyone else sick. I guess that’s really my gift to him.

So, what will it be this year? I haven’t decided yet.  But I have a few things in mind.  Do you have any fun ideas for Father’s Day presents?  I’d love to hear about them.

Bottle Opener


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Filed under Entertaining, Just Stories

Party Time Savers

Since I am in the midst of preparing for my son’s Birthday party, this entry is going to be about some time saving party tips. There will definitely be more of these in the future since we love to entertain.  These are just a few tips that I encountered today while preparing for the party.

Potato Salad  – If you want to make potato salad, but just don’t have the time to peel all those potatoes and your local deli’s just don’t measure up.  Look for a recipe for skin-on potatoes.  They’re are a lot of great recipes that use the baby blues and reds.  It really makes it a quick dish as far as prep goes.  Another upside to these types of salads is they are very rarely made with mayo, so they are less fattening as well.  I use a recipe called “Three Potato Salad” from a book called “Salads” by Elsa Peterson-Schepelern.  It’s really good and super easy to prepare and the colors are nice.  Tip –  when preparing the salad if you dress it when the potatoes are still fairly warm, they absorb more of the dressing and have a better flavor than if you let them cool overnight before dressing.

Kabobs – If you like to grill for your parties, kabobs are always a favorite. But who has time to soak skewers and put all the sloppy marinated pieces on them?  Often the meat cooks at a different pace than the veggies. How many times have you seen your guests pick off the pieces that they like and leave the others? Consider deconstructing your kabobs. You have to take them apart to eat them anyway, so why not start with them that way.  Marinate everything using your normal recipe and then you can just throw the marinated meat/seafood into one grill pan and throw the marinated veggies into another.  This way you can control the cooking time and serve it separately. Also, then your guests can pick the items that they like best to eat, and not have to pick off certain veggies and their not stuck with a skewer full of veggies they don’t like.

The downside to this is that if you won’t be able to control the portions of your guest, especially on those higher ticket items so you may have to buy more seafood than you would if you were assembling the kabobs.

Another great time saver (if you have the space in your refrigerator) is to store your prepared foods in bowls you are going to serve them in that way you can just take everything out just before the guests arrive and put it right on the table – no transferring of bowls and no messy dishes to clean up.

That’s it for now, I hear the footsteps of the little one waking up from his nap.


Filed under Entertaining, Tip of the Week