New Year’s Menu Inspiration!

Hello Love Photography

Hello Love Photography

As hostess and event planner I love any opportunity to cook for others! However, not everyone shares my enthusiasm, and I wanted to share my menu selections for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day celebrations.

New Year’s Eve Dinner

Serve shrimp, avocado, and arugula salad to start.  Simply wash fresh or frozen shrimp. Slice avocado.  Put two hand fulls of arugula on salad plates and top with shrimp and avocado. Add salt, pepper and olive oil to taste.

NYE Shrimp, Avocado, and Arugula Salad

For the main course serve marinated and grilled flank steak with sautéed green beans, new potatoes, and focaccia bread with olive oil and rosemary.  Add some honey or brown sugar to your flank steak marinade, which adds a sweet flavor to the tang of the soy sauce.  For dessert serve ready-made Crème Brule in chocolate cups and top with fresh raspberries and pear.  And of course plenty of bubbly to go around!

New Year’s Day Breakfast/Brunch

Baked egg casserole or frittata cups baked in muffin tins are perfect breakfast or brunch items.  Use fresh parsley, basil, bell peppers, and mushrooms and add your favorite meat such as bacon to your eggs.  Serve with fresh fruit and low-calorie blueberry muffins or chocolate croissants. Don’t forget the mimosa!

Baked Egg Caserole

New Year’s Day Supper/Dinner

Start with spinach and artichoke dip with sourdough bread bites, pita chips, or tortilla chips.  Then use the left over flank steak, avocado, and arugula to make sandwiches.  Add Dijon mustard and Munster cheese and let it bake for 5 min.  at 350 degrees.  Prepare a side salad of pears, strawberries and arugula with champagne and pear vinaigrette.  Serve chocolate molten cake topped with mocha ice cream and chocolate sauce.

Trader Joe's Cholocate Molten Cake

Don’t want to make it yourself, no problem! Trader Joe’s has decadent pre made desserts that are New Year’s Day worthy!


Cheers to a happy, healthy 2013!

Christmas Decorating on a Budget

Christmas Decorating on a Budget

I always enjoy decorating for the holidays, especially this year with my daughter Sofia who is starting to get into Christmas and the arrival of our baby girl number two soon!

The first step to any decorating is deciding on your theme and color palette.  Keeping my daughter in mind I used a whimsical theme this year with red, blue, gold, green and pops of white as my color palette.

Instead of buying all new Christmas decor, I used ornaments, vases, containers, and candles I already had in my home that fit my theme and color palette.  I then purchased additional items from Hobby Lobby such as the red ribbon garland on the Christmas tree, faux garland over the mantle, the wooden Believe sign, nutcracker, Santa Claus, Santa’s Elf helper, snow man, and stocking holders. All these items were on sale for 50% off the original price.

I used previously purchased stockings from Pottery Barn Kids, which has great deals this time of year, that represent each member of our family, including our dog Bailey!  However, if you’re looking to cut down on costs, craft stores have a good selection of stockings. You can stencil the name or first initial of your family member instead of monogramming.  Personal Creations, an online store, also offers decorative stockings at a low price.

To get his look I spent less than $100 and so can you!

Christmas TreeChristmas TreeMantleMantleChristmas Decor