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Category: Joie de Vivre

Joie de vivre translated is “the joy of living.”  There is so much that brings joy into my life.

Appetizer Platters – Dress Them Up !

Appetizer Platter, Cheese Board, Antipasto, Cheese & Charcuterie Platter… there are many names, but they all mean the same thing. Meats and cheeses mingled with pickled veggies, fresh fruits and veggies, dried fruits, nuts, sauces, condiments and just about anything your heart desires. At this time of year, these appetizer platters are made for holiday parties all around the world. I love making these platters, but I also know it is easy to get it in a rut putting out the same items time after time. So on Sunday, my neighbor Natalie along with her kids and her parents came…

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Gifts for the Kitchen King or Queen

Great Gifts for Your Kitchen Royalty OK, I get it. It’s Cyber Monday already so why am I clogging your email inbox this late?  Well, its because it is never too late to share with you these fantastic gift ideas for the chef in your home. On Wednesday, I sent you Great Gifts for the Lover of Wine. Today is Great Gifts for the Home Chef. Below you will find great reads, serving items, skillets, dutch ovens, and prep tools. So let’s get shopping. Extra Large Rustic Olive Wood Serving Board – 20 x 10 Inch XL sells for $59.00 (smaller sizes available) Make your cheese…

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Gifts for the Lover of Wine

The holiday buying season takes off in earnest this weekend, so I came up with some gifts that are perfect for the wine enthusiast and home chef. There is something at every price point, so let’s not dilly dally, let’s get shopping. Great Gifts for the Wine Enthusiast Nambe Curvo Wine Rack – $119.00 Resting on its Nambé Alloy base, the Curvo Wine Rack’s acacia wood form curves rhythmically to create spaces for four wine bottles. A beautiful and functional piece of art, it can be displayed from the side or the front for two distinct effects. The Curvo Wine Rack…

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Joie de Vie and Worth a Binge

Strong Coffee to Red Wine has focused on wine and food now for two years. Recently, I added travel as a pillar of focus.  And today I announce the fourth pillar, Joie de Vie. That means “joy of life” in French, but it is also part of the English vernacular as well. This Joie de Vie is the culmination of everyone and thing in my life. It is my glass half full mindset. And the humor with which I cope with life. It is what I do to relax, inspire, and learn. It is also the poignant moments in my…

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Ceritas Wine Dinner at Edmund’s Oast

Wine Dinner – What is it? Just because you are drinking wine with your dinner does not make it a wine dinner. Sorry, I had to say that even though it may seem obvious. So what is a wine dinner? A Wine Dinner is a structured meal with a set number of courses (three to four) with wine paired to each course.  Which comes first, the food or the wine? That depends on which is the “feature” for the event. If the food is the showcase, it comes first, and wines are selected from the wine list that best compliment the…

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Pantry Raid – It’s What’s 4 Dinner

Before I get to my pantry raid, let’s talk pumpkin. As Halloween approaches and jack-o-lanterns appear on the porches all over the country, there is a question I have to ask. If you bought an extra pumpkin at the market, should you make it into a pumpkin pie? I am here to tell you, don’t do it.  You can, for sure, but it will not turn out as you would expect. Herein lies the problem. All pumpkins are squash, but all squash are not pumpkins. In some countries, all squash are called pumpkins. But in most countries, all squash and pumpkins…

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Breakfast All Day at Millers All Day

I have always thought that a restaurant that serves breakfast all day would be a goldmine. Yes, I know that IHOP, Denny’s and the like serve breakfast all day. But I am thinking a restaurant with a bar and a vibe that says I want to hang out here versus a diner. One that acknowledges that the three most important meals of the day are breakfast, lunch and happy hour. I know, I know that sound like brunch. It is, and that is just what I dreamed. A place where I can get brunch any day of the week. Even at…

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Oysters Casino to Start

I have an Oysters Casino appetizer to share with you today that is so delicious. I got the idea when I was up in Provincetown eating Clams Casino. With fresh and delicious oysters harvested from our waters, it only makes sense to use them instead of clams. So two weeks ago, I had a small dinner party, and this was the second course. But before we get to that, I want to explain where I have been for the past month. The Confluence of Circumstance Thank you for your patience as I dealt with the snowball that was my life…

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Amazing Week! * Beer * And One More Thing

How do you describe a week that by Sunday, you do not get out of bed until 10:00 am, you take four naps throughout the day and evening and then go to bed and fall right to sleep? I only have one word – Amazing! Amazing Bride Last week was a super crazy week in my photography business. I had a shoot on Tuesday evening, Wednesday evening, all day Thursday in Hilton Head (2 1/2 hours south of Charleston) and all day on Saturday. There are a few highlights that I want to share so please indulge me for just…

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Readers Questions & Favorite Things

Today I thought I would share with you some of the questions I have gotten from readers that pertain to wine and the consumption of alcohol. I am thrilled that folks will reach out and I figured that if one person asks a question, many others may be curious as well. But before I start, I have to give a shout out to one of my readers. On Monday when the post about Kelly Fleming Wines went live, I received this picture. That is a bottle of Kelly Fleming 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon that he received as a birthday present from a friend who…

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Monday Coffee * New Brand & a Mea Culpa

Monday, Monday, bah, dah, bah, da da da… So did you sing along as you read? The second portion of that lyric is the depth of my vocabulary until about 2:30 pm each and every Monday. It is not that my Sundays are all that wild. I merely have a mental block regarding Mondays. Perhaps if I was a “morning person” instead of a “night owl.” it might be different, but I will never know. Coffee Roasters of Charleston About a week ago, Gary came home from work and said, “Hey, a co-worker’s husband roasts coffee, and she wants to know…

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A Great Little Book ** Transparency ** and a Recipe

Before I get to the book and the fun dessert recipe, I want to ask you a favor. Transparency When I started this blog over eighteen months ago, one of my goals was: The blog should generate revenue. Was I gonna be able to quit my “day job”? No, at least not right away. But could it supplement my income as I transition my photography business? Here I thought the answer was, Yes. As I moved forward, I learned that while women’s fashion bloggers can make a decent living promoting what they wear and blog about, wine and food bloggers…

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Life Lately: A Balancing Act

Life lately has been a crazy, crazy period for me. Kind of like walking a tightrope and balancing plates on sticks. My blogging has been more sporadic, and I want to explain.  My plan is to post three times a week. Occasionally, it might fall to twice a week, but that would be rare.  But this Spring/Summer it has become the norm with some weeks only posting once (like last week), and that is unacceptable.  So I want to apologize. I am sorry, and I will continually try to do better. Life Lately – Photography One activity that has taken my attention…

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Green Beans with Corn, Avocado, and Mint

We were having dinner last Saturday at my sister’s house. A family friend was in town, and so we were all gathering. Since it is at my sister’s house, she drives the menu. And to say, she has some favorite items that she likes to make, is an understatement. While the sauce, gravy or rub may change it is always pork tenderloin, and the vegetable is also always roasted green beans. It got so frequent that I presented her with a picture of a pig showing all the various cuts of meat and about ten recipes for green beans. Ah, Choices! …

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