Monday, October 10, 2022

Linking up today with Holly and Sarah for Hello Monday and many ladies here for Not Just a Mom – How We Host. I have talked about this often and it’s an area I constantly strive to improve.

Let’s go back to Friday…

The day was beautiful – sunny and crisp – and I had made plans for a happy hour with Erica and Elizabeth. Even though Elizabeth is no longer teaching with us, we have been good about seeing each other often.

We headed to Captain’s Quarters (are you tired of seeing it?) because it really is the best view of the river and the closest to our school.

I had a Kentucky lemonade – bourbon and lemonade.

We had some green chili wontons and

split a caprese pizza. Elizabeth took home the leftovers.

We hung out until about 4:30 and then I went home to Tom and we just had random things out of the fridge for dinner and watched tv. I wasn’t hungry so I just had a few bites.

Saturday morning, my sister and her two girls drove my mom to my city for a miniature show. My mom makes scenes out of miniatures and this is a good opportunity to buy the elements of the scenes. We dropped my mom off and then took the girls consignment shopping. Everyone found at least one thing!

I found three blouses that I will show you on Thursday – one was even new with tags!

Then, the girls were getting a bit hungry so we went to my favorite cookie shop called Penny and Pearl’s and took our cookies next door to a mediterranean place and shared some pita and hummus. Lena (the blonde) loves hummus so much!

We sat and laughed and laughed. These girls are seriously funny. They are quick with the jokes and they laugh at everything I say. Molly is really funny and quick, too.

We picked my mom up and she scored big time in her words. She founds lots of good stuff and it all fit in a tiny bag – miniature jokes. We made miniature puns most of the day, by the way.

Then, my mom was hungry and we had only had a few bites of pita and cookie, so we headed to Drake’s which is a sports bar. It was extremely loud, but everyone liked their food. Tom met us there, too.

Mia got sushi.

Lena got sliders.

I got a salad with green apple, blue cheese, sunflower seeds – yum!

and some sushi. I took half of both things home with me.

After lunch, we went to TJ Maxx and Bath and Body Works and then came back to our patio where Tom had started a fire. We sat around and then they left.

Jack came home because he had worked nearby and we all sat outside and had take out German food for dinner. Our German restaurant that closed had offered a special take out experience for Octoberfest so we jumped on that. I made the carrots.

I had my first apple cider sangria of the season – but I had to use apple juice because I didn’t buy any cider yet.

I made a s’more for dessert, too!

We watched games outside and then I got cold.

I was also really tired from my big day out!

Mia took this black and white of Ernie and sent it to me.

I fell asleep pretty early and then I was up early – oh well.

I had bought this trio at TJ Maxx and couldn’t wait to try it. I am saving peppermint until after Thanksgiving if I can.

Then, I did some meal prep, which I truly enjoy. I love doing it in the morning when I have my energy.

I did mushrooms and onions for breakfast and other things during the week.

I did a mini sheet pan of eggs for my faux egg mcmuffins.

I did one recipe for the week that will be a dinner for Tom and I and a lunch for Erica and I.

I think this would be a great Halloween meal, too. I cobbled together a couple of different recipes and made it healthier with Laura’s lean ground beef and cauliflower rice.

How We Host:

My house is not great for hosting. If I do have people over, it’s probably just one couple in the dining room for dinner or games. I host on my patio the most because I have a table that seats 6 and a sectional that can seat another 6 or so. We host on our boat with usually no more than 4 other adults. I think we can think outside the box when we use the word “host”. It may not have to be at your home, you know?

If you have trouble hosting and you want to do it more, please read Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist. It really helped me to see that I don’t need to do all that I thought I needed to do. My friend Kara agrees about what this book did for her.

A rare photography of Tom smiling:

He smiles often in real life, but to catch it on camera is truly a feat. He was happy about his nachos, it appears.

We hosted some of Tom’s work peeps recently on the boat. We board, we chat, we park at our riverside restaurant and that makes it super easy.

Tom’s boss: I think he is very afraid of Tom’s position as captain in this arena.

Hosting another couple and their dog this summer:

Here are the types of ways I host:

-happy hours after school with one or two other people usually (on my patio)

-summer brunch or lunch on my patio

-having a few people on the boat

-people over for dinner – sometimes take out and sometimes potluck

A couple things have changed the way I see hosting now. I think the pandemic changed my view on how elaborate or not elaborate it needs to be. I also think I’m doing it less now because I feel more freedom in meeting people out. I hosted a lot during the pandemic. I also think age has made me realize it doesn’t need to be perfect or so complicated. People truly just want you – they really don’t care about the other stuff.

I have included hosting on my Early Fall Bucket list. It really is important to me.

What about you? Weekend highlight? Hosting? I’m here for it all!


18 thoughts on “Hello Monday and Not Just a Mom

  1. That sounds like such a fun weekend! I too find that hosting doesn’t have to be fancy or over the top and much more casual about it now that I’m older.


    1. It was! You are right – I think people are more comfortable when you make less fuss. They are more relaxed because you are! We have even hosted during our renovation and it is what it is. I hate that statement, but it fits here!


  2. It sounds like you had a great weekend! My weekend highlight was stumbling upon some cute little shops in a nearby small town while I was out with my mom and sister. We had such a fun Saturday and the weather was AMAZING. It truly felt like the perfect fall day. I like what you said about hosting- it’s good to think outside the box on this topic. I do like to do it in my house, but our dogs just aren’t that conducive to it, if you know what I mean. We pretty much only ever have family over, but we used to have friends over all the time. With Todd working most weekends, that’s tricky now, but I used to love doing that, when we did it. I’m all for having someone join us for dinner at the last minute, though and often our home is filled with the friends of our sons.


    1. Those shops looked so cute! I love that kind of stuff and it is so tempting to me. Yes, about hosting. It may not be your season for hosting at your house due to the dogs, but it won’t always be like that. I think just inviting someone to do something can be a form of hosting and you can treat them to coffee or lunch. I think it’s just about the hospitality you are showing them. I have some friends who never do the “asking” and I just learned to be ok with that. They say yes, but they don’t plan ahead and take charge, you know?
      We had friends of our kids over all the time until mid high school and they started wanted to go to other homes and it made me sad. I always offer, though!


    1. It was a good one! The shopping wore me out. Meal prep has really saved me so much time. I enjoy putting together the sandwiches or the breakfast burritos the most. I try to change it up from week to week and next week I will probably do breakfast bowls.


  3. I love all your family time this weekend. Your nieces are beautiful. That black and white photo of Ernie is a framer!
    You are so right about hosting – people just want you 🙂 I’ve let go with stressing about the little things and perfection. I loved Bread and Wine. Thanks for joining us 🙂


    1. Thank you! They really are and they are so funny! Mia is going to draw Ernie for Tom and I am going to frame it! She is really talented and I will show it on the blog. That book was inspiring!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. We don’t host much anymore… we we’re crazy before the kids and when the kids were in kindergarden… But I know how to do it! The last “bigger” party was when our oldest graduated from high school (which is a really big thing here in Sweden). I made shrimp pies, mixed green salad, and of course a big cake (which I bought, but anyways…).
    Weekend was great, we only spent one night in the cabin and the rest in the city with the girls. They have been complaining that we leave them too much… (!). So we went to a coffee shop, did some shopping…


  5. I love that you host people on your boat– that’s the perfect place to host! Everyone loves a boat ride, especially with good weather and great company!


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