entertaining

champagne + oysters

champagne + oysters

So much for a snow day; the 5-8 inches we were expecting and which caused mass hysteria at the grocery stores yesterday turned out to be gray skies and rain, instead.  And not even a whole lot, at that!  Scrolling through my blog feed this morning, rather grumpily,  I was stopped dead in my tracks…

white + gold thanksgiving table

white + gold thanksgiving table

I about had a heart attack yesterday when I realized that Thanksgiving is exactly two weeks away.  Where has November gone?  This will be the first holiday we are having as a family since the hubby was deployed for Easter and I’ll be hosting something small and intimate to commemorate baby girl’s first Turkey Day! …

take a seat

take a seat

As much as I love decorating for the holidays, when I host Thanksgiving dinner it’s always all about the food.  I’d love to say that I lay out a beautiful, decorative spread, complete with gilded pumpkins, artfully tied bundles of wheat, napkins wrapped with fragrant sprigs of rosemary and place cards hand written in perfect…

inspired: thanksgiving spread

inspired: thanksgiving spread

There are now less than two weeks until Thanksgiving – where has the time gone?  When I’m cooking for the holidays, presentation is just as important as the food itself, and to be honest, it can be just as stressful as planning the actual meal, but for me keeping it simple and easy reign supreme…

easy fall table setting

easy fall table setting

When I picked up these gorgeous gray/green heirloom pumpkins a few weeks back, I put them on my front porch, but I loved the color so much I moved them inside to my kitchen table where I could admire them all day long.  I decided to use them as the basis for a simple Fall-inspired…

set a table like ina garten

set a table like ina garten

I have a slight obsession with the Barefoot Contessa – her recipes are elegant but so easy to follow (I have yet to try one that hasn’t turned out amazingly), but just as much as I love her food, I am also a huge fan of her decorating and entertaining style.  Her rustic-meets-sophisticated table settings…

black, white, green + lovely all over!

black, white, green + lovely all over!

I fell head over heels for the fun celebration/dinner party that the talented gals over at at Confetti Pop created in honor of Rue Mag’s third birthday/anniversary!  The black, white and green color combination is so fun, fresh and classic and the gold and silver accents are such a beautiful compliment.  I especially love the…

impromptu bar setup

impromptu bar setup

The other night I had about 20 minutes notice that a handful of friends were stopping by after work – they were bringing pizza, we were supplying a few after dinner cocktails.  It’s times like these that I wish we had a fabulous, fully-stocked bar cart that I could just wheel into the dining room,…

summer-inspired table setting

summer-inspired table setting

I’ve had this table setting from the home of designer and blogger extraordinaire Mark D. Sikes in my inspiration folder ever since I posted his home tour months ago.  When it comes to setting a summer table, there is no color combination more classic than blue and white – mixed with a little texture, some…

memorial day bash must-haves

memorial day bash must-haves

Memorial Day weekend is finally here!  The weather is beautiful, the pool is open, the fridge and pantry are stocked…the Stivers’ are ready to burn it down over the three-day!  Whether you’re hosting a barbeque, attending a party or just relaxing over the long weekend, here are a few essentials that will come in handy…

set a chic (and cheap!) outdoor table

set a chic (and cheap!) outdoor table

Summer is my favorite time of the year to entertain.   I love bringing the indoors outside to enjoy a yummy meal with my friends in the warm summer sun or under a sky of stars (and a ton of candles!).  So when my good friend asked for help setting a beautiful outdoor table for…

happy 4th!

happy 4th!

I can’t think of a better way to celebrate our nation’s Independence Day than with good food and great friends. John Derian’s celebration at his Cape Cod home in Bon Appetit is my kind of get together – low key, casual and relaxed.  Oh, and it helps when the party’s right on the beach!  Below…