Mother’s Day recap and Hosting Girls’ Night {Apps, Drinks & Girl Talk}

Happy Monday, everyone! Hope you enjoyed a wonderful Mother’s Day yesterday…we sure did! Not only was the weather beautiful, but we spent the afternoon sipping on wine on the grounds of a beautiful vineyard. If that’s not perfection, I don’t know what is! Saltwater Farm Vineyard in Stonington, CT hosts a Mother’s Day afternoon of live music every year. They offer seating inside (where the band plays) as well as outside and guests can bring their own snacks to enjoy with some of the select wines available. If you’re looking for a place to take your mom next year, this is the place to be!

When we got home, Frank and I served up grilled dill/lemon salmon, grilled red pepper and portabello mushrooms, roasted sweet potatoes with cinnamon and a big salad. A delicious meal to cap off a great weekend and Mother’s Day.

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When Mother’s Day came along I took some time to reflect on how lucky I am to be the daughter of an amazing, loving and kind mother and the soon-to-be daughter-in-law to one of the most caring, funny and selfless people I know. To have not one, but two amazing woman to look up to is so special to me, and I really do feel so lucky! So THANK YOU mom and Colleen for your unconditional love…I appreciate you both for all that you do!!

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Hosting Girls’ Night

On Saturday night, I had the pleasure of hosting a girls’ night for my dear friend Courtney, who I introduced you to last week. I had our friend Jill and her sisters Rosemary and Erin over for a night of good laughs, good food, plenty of drinks and lots of wedding talk. We had a blast and I’m just so excited for Courtney!

I had a menu planned for a while, and I made a few additions and last minute tweaks as we got closer to the date. On Friday afternoon, I went grocery shopping and accomplished a ton of prep work so on Saturday I could focus on the things that needed to be cooked and plated without spending the entire day in the kitchen. I cannot stress enough how much easier it is to host when you prep the day before!

On the menu:

  • Guacamole (homemade) and fresh salsa (store-bought) with gluten-free corn chips
  • Whole wheat pizza with garlic & olive oil, veggies and mozzarella
  • Tomato, mozz, basil skewers
  • Cheese, hummus and salami platter
  • Balsamic roasted vegetable and quinoa salad
  • Mixed Berry Bruschetta–Colleen found this recipe in the newspaper and suggested I try it out. Let me tell ya, it was a hit! Definitely delicious and fresh and if you make it on whole grain baguette as I did, you can cut a few calories here and there (just a few, though!)
  • Dark chocolate covered strawberries

Prep work (day before):

  • Cook the quinoa

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  • Make the tomato, mozz, basil skewers

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  • Chop all veggies: zucchini, peppers, onions, mushrooms for the quinoa salad, peppers and mushrooms for the pizza

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  • Make the guacamole mix minus the avocados

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  • Rinse and chop berries and red onion for the bruschetta

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Day-Of

  • Complete the mix for mixed berry bruschetta
  • Drizzle the tomato, mozz, basil skewers with a little bit of balsamic, salt and pepper
  • Add the avocado to the guac
  • Roast the balsamic veggies and combine with quinoa, basil, lemon juice, salt and pepper
  • Cook the peppers and mushrooms to top the store-bought whole wheat pizza crust before baking with cheese and garlic oil
  • Set up the cheese board spread
  • Make the chocolate covered strawberries

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The night was a complete success and we also enjoyed some delicious home baked goods for desert courtesy of Jill! She made espresso brownies with chocolate chips and delicious cheese cake squares topped with blueberries. I didn’t take any pictures because we all dug in so fast, it was too late! They were DELICIOUS!

Courtney brought an amazing breakfast spread that we enjoyed in the morning. Homemade individual egg frittatas (veggie and turkey sausage), blueberry muffins, bagels, fresh fruit and hot coffee. A perfect way to end a perfect get together. I couldn’t have asked for anything more!

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Cheers to Courtney’s engagement, catching up with friends and future wedding planning to come!

Below: Courtney, Jill and I

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Courtney and her sisters: Erin, Rosemary, Court

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Have a wonderful Monday and a great week!

 

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