This post is sponsored by Ghirardelli and Josh Cellars, order but all views expressed here are my own. Chocolate and wine are two of my favorite things. I would guess that’s true for most women that I know. My friends and I have been known to have Pop Up Parties with nothing more than a few bottles of wine, medic a table of sweet treats, easy conversation and lots of laughter. When I think of how to spend this Valentine’s Day, this is what comes to mind. (Sorry husband.)
So I was thrilled when approached to promote Ghirardelli’s Valentine’s chocolates and Josh Cellars wine. Ghirardelli’s dark chocolate with sea salt caramel and the red blend by Josh Cellars are two of my favorites. Now I have another reason to love them: they’ve given me two $75 American Express prepaid gift cards to give away to two of my readers!
How will you spend Valentine’s Day with Ghirardelli and Josh Cellars? Show me on Instagram — plus more ways to enter below.
You can purchase your own Ghirardelli chocolates and Josh Cellars wine at your local Walmart.* (Not all Walmart stores carry the wine. If that’s the case where you are, check your nearest liquor store.)
*NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. VOID WERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. Giveaway ends February 14, 2016 at 12:00 AM CST. Winners will be selected at random by Rafflecopter and notified here and on Instagram. Sponsors will ship prize directly to winners.
For 25 years The California Wine Club has been offering hand selected wines from Artisan Wineries and each wine has received rave reviews. This is why they have become so popular and just from word of mouth alone have grown over the years. Coupled with their 100% money back guarantee (because they know not everyone likes every wine), they have continued to grow delivering thousands of monthly wine clubs all over the United States.
It was a random Wednesday and I had just gotten my Spain box from Try the World, this so I thought…
WHY NOT HAVE A PARTY!?!
The Try the World website explains the Spain box like this:
Curated by tapas expert Jamie Bissonnette, thumb this month’s box is filled with local and artisanal items from Spain that make it easy to share experiences with your friends and family. Using the items from the box, bulimics you can experience the vibrancy of Spanish culture right from the comfort of your own kitchen.
My sister-in-law Ines was born in Spain and is half Spanish, so I told her to come over. Then I just posted on social media an open invitation for my girlfriends to join us at my house in two hours. I ran by the grocery store to pick up a baguette and brie. Then I used the ingredients in my Spain box to make my spread.
I sliced the baguette into rounds and brushed it with the Spanish olive oil. On half of the bread rounds, I also added the tomato spread. That all went into the oven to toast up a bit.
Then I placed the almond torron candy, the little “Ines” cakes, and tuna on a plate. (I know, weird combo, but I was in a hurry.)
I topped the brie with the orange blossom jam, and surrounded it with the bread. The tomato-topped bread went on it’s own platter. I grabbed some napkins, little plates and glasses, and bottle of red wine. My friends brought more wine because…it’s wine and you don’t want to run out. Besides Ines, three more girls came over. We ate, drank, laughed. Our kids joined in the fun too. My husband found a Spanish playlist online and hooked up the Bose speakers. It was a fiesta! And we ate ALL THE FOOD. I look forward to my next Try the World box and another “It’s a random weeknight, so let’s have a pop up party” party.
**This post contains affiliate links, impotent and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.
Christmas decorations are already in the stores (and it’s not even Halloween yet), so I guess that means that I need to start thinking about what gifts to give my family and friends this year. We draw names with my family, and I somehow always end up with my Dad. He is so hard to buy for! So this year, I’m researching “gift a month” options. I think gifts that surprise me every month are so much fun. Here are a few interesting ones that I have found for everyone on your gift list:
FOR DADS: Scent Trunk sends your guy a box of custom scents tailored to his unique tastes for $18/month.
Root Bizzle is a tie a month club. (AK Valley would love this!) $25/month and cancel at any time.
FOR KIDS: With Groovy Lab in a Box, you will receive boxes full of everything you need to learn about and do hands on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Starting at $23.95/month.
Buddy Box is a monthly care package for kids’ faith that gets them excited about growing their relationship with Jesus. Starts at $22.99/month.
Nerd Block is a toy subscription box for nerds. (This might belong in the Dad category.) Starting at $13.99/month.
Green Kid Crafts sends monthly boxes of discovery and experiments for ages 3-10. You can even get your first box free! Boxes start at $17.95 there after.
Hamptons Lane sends you curated artisan ingredients, kitchen tools and recipes to make a complete meal such as Spanish Tapas or Coastal Seafood Boil. Box prices vary (around $50ish).
Hatchery offers a monthly box of small-batch ingredients and condiments for the cook in your family. Bundles start at $31.
Love with Food offers monthly boxes of all-natural snacks. They even have a gluten-free box. Starting at $7.99/month.
Veestro sends plant-based, chef-prepared meals each month. The Starter Pack Special is 12 meals plus cookies for $99.
UrthBox sends organic, non-GMO snacks monthly. Starting at $12.99.
FOR THE LADIES: Faithbox is a monthly box subscription that ships items to inspire and strengthen your faith. Boxes start at $17/month. Now 10% off.
Julep Maven is a monthly beauty products and nail polish box. Get your first box free, then $24.99 a month.
FOR COFFEE AND TEA DRINKERS:
Bean Box sends a half pound of freshly-roasted whole bean coffee, tasting notes, roaster profiles, brewing tips, and an artisan chocolate. Starting at $17/month.
Art of Tea offers a variety of handcrafted teas starting at $15/month.
FOR HEALTH NUTS:
Bulu Box offers samples of vitamins, supplements and healthy snacks each month. The boxes are $10/month.The THRIVE Experience is a premium lifestyle plan, to help individuals experience and reach peak physical and mental levels. I’ve personally been using Thrive for just over a year, and I love how I feel using the 3 steps every morning. $150/month on autoshipBestowed will send someone you care about a monthly delivery of the best healthy food and snacks. Starting at $20/month.
FOR THE “I LOVE JESUS BUT I DRINK A LITTLE” CROWD:
The Original Craft Beer Club. Need I say more? $39/month.
The California Wine Club (might just be my personal favorite) sends wine every month. (Cue the hallelujah chorus.) Boxes start at $39.95.
Plonk Wine Club — 2, 4 or 12 bottles (case) delivered to your or your gift recipient’s doorstep every month. From $49.99.
What gift a month clubs have you tried before and liked (or disliked)? I’d love to hear your feedback.
*NOTE: This information was compiled from ShareASale where I am an affiliate. I earn a small commission when readers make a purchase after clicking on my link. Find a sponsor for your web site. Get paid for your great content.
After reading For The Love by Jen Hatmaker, I wanted to start a supper club. Like Jen, I find cooking relaxing, and it’s rewarding to share a thoughtfully-prepared meal with people who will appreciate it. I emailed my friend Micaiah since I knew she was reading For The Love also. She immediately said yes to the idea, so we brainstormed a few other couples to join us. I purposely suggested three other couples that I want to get to know better, and Micaiah thought that was a good idea. Sometimes we get so caught up in our little circles, and it’s nice to branch out and build new friendships.
I volunteered to start us off and host the first supper club. The host does all the cooking. The guests bring the beer and wine. I pulled out my P. Allen Smith cookbook and picked four recipes — three of which were new to me.
I started with a lovely pear salad. It was easy and probably my favorite thing of the night. It had romaine, sliced pears, toasted pecans, blue cheese, and a apple cider & honey vinaigrette. I will make this again this week. I adore this salad.
For the main course, I made a roasted red pepper and prosciutto frittata and paired it with creamy Parmesan grits. I was spooked that the frittata would never cook through — it baked three or four times longer than the recipe called for. I think that it was because my cast iron skillet was too small, so the frittata was thicker than it needed to be. But thankfully, it turned out perfect and everyone enjoyed it. For dessert, I made two sweet potato pies. This was the one recipe that I had made before. It’s easy and delicious. Dinner conversation and wine flowed easily. We discussed how couples met, racial reconciliation and the church, careers and kids. One of our supper club couples couldn’t make it, but hopefully they will be there next month. Micaiah is hosting in November. She is a wonderful chef, so it should be wonderful.
This afternoon the rain stopped and the sun peaked through the clouds. That was all the invitation I needed to take a walk. We loaded up the girls in the wagon and headed toward Seaside. It was a mile and half walk. (Flip flops were not the best idea.) Seaside is a lovely little town. The Airstream food trucks are adorable and very tempting. (I want to go back and try the Meltdown on 30A grilled cheese food truck before the week’s end.)
We ended up at a gelato shop. Anthony got maple bacon (yes BACON) gelato. Maya got blood orange sorbet (great choice!). And I chose the chocolate Health gelato. OMG — I could eat gelato every day if I could. After the gelato/sorbet treat, population health Maya and Anthony played chase in the Amphitheater lawn while Quinn and I sat on a park bench enjoying the view. Then we walked back to the condo. It was a LONG walk back. (My feet were not happy with me.) We freshened up a bit, order then drove to dinner in Watercolor. My friend Whitney recommended Wine World, link and it did not disappoint.