Entertaining:: the Cheese Platter

One of my absolute favorite appetizers is a cheese platter. In fact, I could just have it for my main course too! A few months ago I put this cheese platter together for a little spa night that I had with some friends. It was a hit, especially with me! With the help of the extremely knowledgeable people at the cheese section at Harmons (a local grocery by my house that has an impressive selection of artisan cheese), I was able to put together a platter with different textures and flavors.  In my opinion, it's important to use cheeses that are aged, soft, firm, and blue.  Not that it's important, but I think it's fun to use a variety of cheese from different locations. On this particular platter, I used a mix of national and international types.

What I used on my cheese platter::

*Raspberry Bellavitano from Wisconsin
*Zola Gouda from Holland
*Domaine De Vallage Triple Cream from France (this was insanely amazing)
*Cheddar Cabot Clothbound from Vermont
*Cambozola Black Label from Germany

Items that compliment the cheese platter::

*Creminelli Mocetta meat thinly sliced- I was skeptical to try, but so glad I did. AMAZING!
**Pepperlane Blackberry "buzz" Jalapeno Spread: I've tried a few different kinds of spreads, but I keep going back to this Blackberry Jalapeno spread... It is hands down my favorite!
*Marchini Almonds and/or cashews
*a variety of dried fruit, or fresh fruit
*Castelvetrano Olives- almost a must in my "cheese handbook!" I think I'm addicted to these.
*a variety of breads and/or crackers:: my personal favorite cracker is the La Panzanella Croccantini Rosemary, which I get at Costco, but I've seen in grocery stores. It's absolutely perfect with cheese!


It's funny how sometimes things can be intimidating, until you finally give it a try, and then it just becomes fun to experiment and learn. Since our little friend spa night, I've been trying to improve on my cheese knowledge and skills.  So, throughout the holidays my husband and I have been trying different varieties of cheese, crackers, spreads, and meats.  
I think he is now more addicted to cheese than I. 

Other Cheese Platter Items:
* labels always make for a fun and informative addition. Where can you get some? 
Well, just check out this fun cheese tasting kit that Modern Palm has.  What I like about this kit is that it has the blank cards you can write on already for you to add to your display... it's supper easy.  It also includes info flash cards that give you information on many different types of cheeses and locations so you can learn more about what types of cheese you'd like to use.

Modern Palm  also has some great platters to use for any entertaining purpose:

New Years Eve is the perfect time to enjoy a cheese platter...
or if you're like me, any night of the week works too! 
If you've already experimented with a cheese platter, please leave comments and suggestions. 
I'm always wanting and excited to hear good ideas and suggestions, 
especially when it comes to cheese!


Cat Deeley's Boho-Chic Home

InStyle Magazine highlighted the wonderful Cat Deeley's 
Boho-Chic Beverly Hills home in their August edition.
There is so much to love in her casual yet sophisticated home.

I've been a fan of Cat Deeley for years. 
As the host of my favorite TV show So You Think You Can Dance, 
I have loved Cat's effortless style and her casual, comfortable, & lovely personality. 
Her home reflects her personality. It is happy, eclectic, and welcoming.
Check out the Behind-the-Scenes video

"I want my house to be like a diary. 
Your home should reflect your travels 
and your history."

--Cat Deeley

Check out the Q&A with Cat Deeley at The Glitter Guide
photo collage by The Glitter Guide

Check out & follow me on Pinterest  
{lots of Cat on my 'people' board}


Gift Guide: For the Foodie

Have you started checking off your Christmas list? 
Well, if you're like me, you haven't quite finished making the list yet... 
hey! I still have time, right?
The faster we finish our shopping, the faster we'll have more time to 
slurp some of that festive eggnog... 

Sooo, I put together some gift ideas, and I plan on continuing to add more 
gift guides in the next few weeks.
 This guide just might give you the inspiration you need to pick out something 
perfect for that gal who loves to hang-out in the kitchen. 
Bon Appetite! 
Gift Guide for the Foodie 
from Modern Palm


Striped Paper Straw Wreath {Christmas Tutorial} by Tatertots & Jello

The very talented Jen, who has a fun blog Tatertots & Jello
shared with me this FANTASTIC DIY tutorial on how to make a 
wreath using Stripey Straws...
I la la LOVE it when people share projects or designs with me where they've 
used items from Modern Palm
If you have home decor or projects where you've used things from Modern Palm, please send me an email and I will share with others... I'm always amazed with y'all and your amazing talent!  
So, thanks Jen for sharing this tutorial that you made last year. 
I'm so glad that you did and I'm sure many others will try this darling wreath.
 I know I'm for sure going to... 
I think I know where I can get some fun Stripey Straws! ;)

 Go to Tatertots & Jello for the DIY instructions


Crew Bubble Statement Necklace

Here are a few fabulously fashionable photos from Pinterest 
that show many different options on how to wear the Crew Bubble Statement Necklace.

Our beautiful & bold J Crew inspired bubble statement necklace is high quality made without the high price.

This stylish necklace drapes gracefully around your neck in this iconic design. Measuring twenty six inches, this gold tone chain necklace hits mid-chest and looks perfect over a tunic, solid top or layered with another simple necklace... 
**More colors are available in our shop

Crew Bubble Statement Necklace found in the Modern Palm Shop
Fabulously Fashionable photos found at Pinterest! Let's connect there!


Thanksgiving at our Home

 I tend to only really decorate for the holidays at Christmas... 
We've added to the Halloween decor in recent years for the kids.  
Mostly, their cute Halloween crafts and pictures.  But, this is all I do for Thanksgiving. 
This year we added the Thankful Tree.  
I cut some branches in my yard, spray painted them a metallic gold 
(although the gold doesn't really show in the photo), and hung some fall patterns (found at Target) 
with baker's twine (from my shop Modern Palm).
The kids wrote what they are thankful for on the back of the leaves and we will continue 
to add to it throughout the month.
Today I'm thankful to live in the beautiful United States of America.
I'm thankful to for the right and blessing to vote!


Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins 

1 2/3 cup flour (I use whole wheat flour)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
(or 2 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. ground cloves, 1/2 tsp. ground ginger)
2 eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin  (I add just a bit more than 1 cup)
1/2 cup melted butter
1 cup chocolate chips  (this last time I did 1/2 semi sweet and 1/2 milk choc.)

mix ingrediants, scoop into muffin cups
bake at 350 for 20 min.'s
Enjoy! This is perfect for this time of season!


Designer Highlight: Greg Natale

Love this living room by a Sydney based architect and interior designer, Greg Natale.
This is very graphic, chic, modern, sophisticated, and so inviting.
I think the star of the room is the fun chevron chair by the window. 

I am now a super fan of Greg Natale's work, 
and below is another room that I think is just fabulous.  


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