“I thought 2020 would be the year I got everything I wanted. Now I know 2020 is the year I appreciate everything I have.”
This time of year, I like to spend some time looking back at the whole year, to soak up the individual ingredients the calendar vigorously whisks into one batter. Usually, my reflections are marked by blog content, but this year, my content was more sparse because my energy was concentrated on one very big project, which I'm finally ready to announce, so keep reading, and let me know what you're proud of this year. As always, if you're here, thank you! Thanks for reading, for commenting, for bringing these words and pictures to life.
A year can hold so much, yet it's easy to overlook the many moments that should fill us with lasting gratitude. That's why, come New Year's Day, I like to nestle in and really look back at the love and care I put into this, my corner of the web. I do this so as to celebrate, rather than denigrate, my efforts. It's all too easy to critique the times when I didn't post frequently, or to compare myself to other bloggers, but when I see all these recipes, adventures and posts together, I find contentment in the nostalgia (and my ever changing hair).
Don't panic [mostly a note to self], but the calendar is in a last-lap, sprint situation with Christmas. It's time to finalize gift ideas, dot the i's and cross the t's on the menu, and put the shopping list in motion. Here's a Holiday Recipe Roundup of some of my favorite edible gifts and desserts from holidays past!
So, when I find true corn, corn with history, sweet, imperfect corn from smaller farms, who have put their foot down, who have held fast to purity, all I want to do is celebrate! And while the absolute best way to eat corn is still just a simple slathering of butter and a sprinkling of salt, it wouldn't be a proper ode if I didn't begin to experiment.
If you’re craving the comforts of fall for every course, then this Apple Themed Menu is for you!
To celebrate the ripe old age of six, my sisters threw me a 101 Dalmatians party that friends still talk about (or, at least, I still talk about). There was definitely a snowman theme at some point (I’m a January baby), a beach “getaway,” an innocent sock hop when most parties included spin-the-bottle, and an Amélie themed shindig well into adulthood. Do you see the common thread? I LOVE ME A THEME PARTY, and dinner parties are no exception.
Shortly after I met Ashley, a fellow Pittsburgh food blogger, I met her yard, and all the design gears in my brain started to spin. The ivy, the dappled light, the wooden deck… all of it begged for a dinner party. We hatched the idea for a Pittsburgh food blogger potluck, and because I was involved, we hatched the idea for a themed Pittsburgh food blogger potluck, more specifically an Apple Themed Menu.
So on a sunny Sunday, I styled some of my favorite plaids, baskets and gourds. Then, eight of us gathered, told our two truths and lies, shared lessons learned, demystified instant pots, and combined all of our culinary creativity into one apple themed menu, from sips to sweets. It made bidding farewell to summer a little bit easier, a little more ceremonious.
If a fall gathering is on your horizon, consider challenging your guests to a themed potluck of your own, or if you’re feeling like a super host, take a stab at recreating this blogger-tested apple themed menu. Or, if you’re feeling like a reasonable human being with realistic goals, give these recipes a whirl over the course of the season. (full menu below)