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Nothing more graceful than the curtsy. Nothing more noble than the bow.

Two wonderful heirloom touches that are almost all but forgotten in our modern world of today, the curtsy has held up with the ballerinas of our world, while the bow is still a proper form of greeting among Asian cultures.

A lovely gesture for any host would be to entertain the idea of bringing back the graceful, dance-like moves that women & gentlemen practiced in another era.

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rosegarden.011The well-heeled hostess most always has a fresh & fragrant vase of flowers adorning her tabletop when guests arrive.

And the most skilled, as Martha Stewart has reinforced for us, bring those blooms in straight from their very own gardens. Nothing finer than a beautiful burst of flowers and foliage, still moist from the morning dew, fresh-cut and displayed for all to enjoy.

My Nana was known for her beautiful rose gardens. From red to pink to white, from fragrant climbing roses to towering Queen Annes, all giving off the most beautiful aroma that surely could be sniffed throughout the neighborhood.

The art of growing a garden is simply an heirloom treasure Nana J&Jin itself. Learning to appreciate the time honored tradition of nurturing for and tending to a delicate rose garden, a rewarding craft that reaps beautiful rewards for entertaining a lovely home.

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Walk like a lady.008

The grace and elegance of a woman’s gate in heels with a high worn skirt simply cannot be matched.

Is the simple act of walking an art form in itself?  Certainly. As a gracious host or joining in as a guest at an entertaining evening event, the ability to glide through the room with a simple sweeping movement is an enviable joy some women hold over others less classically taught.

I admit I Googled it … “How to walk like a lady.” Searching how I might share with you the steps you might take to add this certain swagger to your very own list of heirloom qualities.

Not certain what I was looking for, trying to capture the movement into a simple list of how-to’s – chin up, toes pointed, hips leading. I was reminded by my search of the practicing techniques once used, rather rarely today I would think, of placing a nice hardcover book atop your head and walking a straight and sweeping line.

Much like the taste of your favorite recipe or the smell of the sweetest scent, it seems that I can’t quite capture treasured walk of a lady into words. Though, its sweet throwback grace is recognizable when you see it present in today’s society and it’s simply lovely!

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Entertain elegantly, with IceMilk Aprons.

Unexpected Touches.002 Nothing says thoughtful when entertaining guests like a single unexpected touch in some form or fashion.

Whether it’s in the presentation, the meal, a takeaway or simply an experience during the gathering – an unexpected touch is a simple way to show your guests you care.

My personal favorite is something quirky that reflects your own style or something that ties into the occasion for the gathering.

Rock candy is a perfect touch for me. Colorless, fun, somewhat organic, throwback & sweet, with a hint of whimsy … and certainly unexpected for whatever the gathering!

What will your unexpected touch be at your next gathering?

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Entertain in style, with IceMilk Aprons


After a recent trip to the oh-so-wonderful land of Serenbe, I remembered the importance & significance of a good tour – an essential piece to artfully entertaining your guests.

My tour consisted of a walk on foot around the beautiful Georgia organic farm community and an explanation of each of the buildings on the property, when they were built, stories from childhood, flora & fauna, and happenings of past events on property.

Whether you’re touring your guests across your land, or simply hosting a dinner party, remember to share with them an artful tour of your home. Share with them the story behind a painting on your wall, or your vast collection of books, or the trials & tribulations of your garden. Make it inclusive, make it a story. Share yourself and your home with your guests on your tour and it will surely be something they remember and treasure about their experience with you!

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Entertain in style with IceMilk Aprons

As the Easter holiday fast approaches, bring some holiday spirit and decor into your home or at your Spring gathering while still keeping it tasteful and classy.

I believe there are few things that make a statement more than an arrangement that includes a single color palette and a collection of similar objects. And the same is true with my favorite Easter display. A gathering of beautiful chocolate Easter bunnies, each with a different pose and size proportion, but all with the delicate detailing and features that make them unique.

The rich chocolate brown color makes for a lovely grouping, whether making a centerpiece display, the highlight of each place setting or simply on a foyer side table making for a grand and unexpected entrance into your home.

Enjoy their beauty & simplicity, just don’t be surprised if one or two disappear to hungry hands before the holiday is here!

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Perfect for entertaining, you’ll be hard pressed to find a fine gourmet shop that doesn’t carry the wonderful Bella Cucina line of gourmet “artful foods.”

The rustic foods are dedicated to preserving the passion & tradition of Italian foods, and founder Alisa Barry has developed a wonderful treasure in her line of rich spreads, crackers & entertaining goods.

The packaging is clean & simply beautiful, and you can be confident serving your guests as the foods seem to be lovingly hand-prepared which makes for an impressive spread. From Meyer lemon dessert spreads, to Italian flatbread, to artichoke lemon or sweet Vidalia onion pestos. And I must say, the Virginia-Highlands shop in Atlanta is possibly the biggest treat of all – a must to visit and soak in the experience.

Treat your guests to the artful passion with the simple elegance and hearty tastes of Bella Cucina at your next gathering.


Choosing an appropriate signature drink truly is an art.

Absolutely a southern tradition, and one worth continuing, consider selecting a signature drink for your event guests at your next gathering. There are many things to consider before making a rash decision. What is the occasion? What else are you serving in terms of food? beverages? Who are your guests and what do they like?

A signature drink can be one that you own and always serve when you entertain, truly a signature of yourself as a host that guests look forward to and know will be there each and every time. For this, I’d recommend you choose something that is truly special & meaningful in someway to you. Perhaps it is a Manhattan because that was your grandfather’s drink of choice. Or something with peach schnapps because you are from the fine state of Georgia.

Or, a signature drink can be one that fits the occasion. Like margaritas for a summer cookout, mint juleps for a Derby party or a flirty martini for a ladies night.

Whatever your drink of choice, having another special option for guests on top of wine & beer will help to solidify you as an expert in the art of entertaining!


A must-have for entertaining is a breadth of entertaining pieces from which to serve your guests.

From stands to platters to dishes, presentation is 90% of the effort. So, one of my favorite entertaining pieces is a glass bell cloche. WHAT a lovely & versatile little piece this is!

Makes for a great centerpiece on a table with a plant or potted herb inside, wonderful for setting atop a rustic cutting board and serving cheese beneath, and simply divine for desserts like cupcakes with fluffy white icing. Even a candle setting would be delightful in one of these cloches.

If you don’t have one, you simply must run right out and find one today. Be sure to search & scour for the most unique & wonderful one you can find. And let me know how else you’ve found to use yours for entertaining!

Some of the most lovely of family times have included a bottle (or more) of wine.

A wonderful way to remember these times spent laughing with your family & friends is to collect these corks in a large glass hurricane. I’ve seen folks write the date & occasion on each cork with a sharpie, which is great for reminiscing – looking back on a dinner party, a wedding or new years eve. And it also is a nice way to think back on how good a bottle was and be able to look back and see exactly what it was.

And, the corks make for a charming display, especially once you’ve gathered enough – and are great to set up on a bar area or in the kitchen. I love the organic look of all the corks stacked together – simply a treat!

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