This past weekend, fifty women joined together for an intimate gathering celebrating a very special person in our live’s 50th birthday. We, along with our younger brother and sister, planned this cocktail party in honor of Evon leaving no small detail overlooked. The tone was set with a color scheme that reminded us of her and lots of personal touches.

We woke up early Saturday morning to go to the Los Angeles Flower Mart. Gorgeous roses and other types of garden flowers in blush tones were complimented nicely when paired with soft, plush greenery. We took all of our purchases home and rearranged them in glass vases to make beautiful centerpieces for each table.

Tiffany blue silk tablecloths and wooden folding chairs were rented from Signature Party Rentals. We hand-picked photos from Evon’s personal collection, placed them in gold vintage style frames, and finished off each table with a cluster of antique glass candle holders (with different textures).

Evon wanted to thank her guests by giving each lady a special take-home gift, and we knew just the right thing. We purchased these mini succulents while we were at the Flower Mart, transferred them into tiny glass jars, and finished them off with a personal note from the birthday girl herself. Each plant was tied with a piece of blush ribbon to coordinate with our color scheme.

The women arrived wearing their highest heels and best cocktail attire and were surprised by a guest visit from a belly dance instructor. The night was complete with lots of food, dancing, speeches, and even a special photo montage with a video clip from her nieces and nephews overseas.

 
 
The catering was provided by Evon’s sister, Suzie (of Suzie’s Deli-cious). She created special appetizers with lots of amazing flavors such as; homemade salsa and chips, tuna tartar cups, chicken skewers, mini fajitas, and fresh salads with seasonal fruit.

Celebrating fifty years calls for more than just blowing out standard birthday candles. This gorgeous chocolate cake exploded with sparklers and light as each guest sang joyfully. Evon was truly grateful to be spending her special day with her closest family and friends, and we were truly grateful to have been able to help with the planning of this special event.

 
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Tomorrow night continues the Jewish High Holidays. However, while last week’s Rosh Hashanah celebrations were upbeat and positive, on Yom Kippur there is a much more serious feel. It seems every Jewish holiday (well, every holiday for that matter) revolves around food. On the contrary this holiday is all about the absence of food. As we fast for twenty-four hours, we focus on our wrong-doings from the past year and making amends to those we have hurt. 
During our college years spent in Arizona, we had to pick and choose when we would and would not return home to California for holidays and other special family events. We were lucky enough to have family friends that welcomed us with open arms to attend temple services and celebrate with them in their homes. The Friefield / Joselyn clan were the first to introduce us to the wonderful tradition of breaking our Yom Kippur fast with a light breakfast meal. A tradition that we have since brought to our family here in California, and know that we will continue for years to come!

Each year, we spend our Yom Kippur Break the Fast at our grandparent’s house. Grandma always makes a list of who will be attending her dinner parties as well as what she will serve so she won’t forget anything

The table is set with a casual feel. No fancy china this week, however cloth napkins and napkin rings add a nice holiday touch.


We break our fast with our favorite breakfast spread; bagels, lox, and cream cheese with all the fixings (and delicious deli pickles of course). Our mouths are watering just looking at this picture of fresh everything bagels from Western Bagel … our favorite! How cute is Grandma’s bagel tray?


The last dish to complete our meal, but definitely not the least, is Grandma’s famous chile egg puff. We would get in major trouble (and we wouldn’t want to do that after a day of repenting, would we?) for sharing this secret family recipe with all of you, so we will just say that adding mild green chiles to a light and airy egg dish is absolutely delicious!
We seriously don’t know what we would have done without finding this wonderful tradition. Of course we are also grateful that our family decided to take it on as their own several years ago. It is truly our favorite way to break the fast. If you are fasting tomorrow “G’mar Chatimah Tovah” – may it be an easy one for you and your family. Happy Holidays!

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Like most college students, when we attended Arizona State University (Go Sun Devils!), we did not have much money. We were constantly looking for inexpensive and easy dinners to make. The last couple of years of college we lived together and were able to cook together which made this daunting task a little bit more fun. One of our favorite meals we came up with was what we called “What’s in your refrigerator?” pasta. This recipe consisted of a couple of key ingredients including: penne pasta, fresh tomatoes, olive oil, garlic salt, and basil and was completed with any other fun ingredients we happened to have in our refrigerator.

It has been many years, but this week after a long day after work (and not too many options in the refrigerator), we decided to remake this familiar meal. All key ingredients were included and this time we added broccoli, feta cheese, artichoke hearts, and some red chili flakes for a spicy kick. It is so easy to make and only requires one pot. Just follow these three quick steps:

1. Cook pasta, strain, and return to pot.

2. Cut up all veggies and steam any that are raw. This can be done in the microwave.

3. Add all seasonings, olive oil, veggies, and any additional ingredients you’d like to the pot of pasta. Return to low heat to warm up before serving. Sometimes we like to add pre-cooked chicken or shrimp for a little extra protein.

This sure beats Top Ramen any day. We would love to know, what were your quick and inexpensive favorites during your college years?

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Eating snacks, working on crafts, and getting caught up with your girlfriends sounds like a perfect way to spend your day. Right? What a great reason to start a Craft Club.

Our friend, Leigh, decided to host the first Craft Club event. She sent out this adorable Save the Date to let our guests know to mark their calendars and what the theme would be. In the time leading up to our Craft Club date, members repinned ideas on Pinterest on their own Craft Club boards to use as inspiration for their creations. We all stayed connected on Pinterest to see each other’s ideas. Here are some of our Pinterest repins:

As you can see, we decided to create candle holders for our Halloween decor as our first Craft Club project. Guests were encouraged to use this general theme to create for their own personal aesthetic. You may see sparks of these inspiration photos in many of the Craft Club member’s candle holders, as Pinterest is a great resource and starting ground for ideas.

While our hands were kept busy with paintbrushes full of Mod Podge, our mouths were enjoying these delicious snacks Leigh prepared for her guests (which included delicious hummus and homemade pita chips, veggies with a tzatziki dip, and pumpkin bread to go with the Halloween theme).

Each member brought their own materials and were also very willing to share what they had. Amazing candle holders were created out of glass vases, fish bowls, wine bottles, you name it (Recycled bottles are also great for projects like these). We went to Marshall’s to gather cheaper glass bottles to use as our base canvases. It was exciting and very helpful to be in a room full of crafty people all using the theme in their own different ways and inspiring each other at the same time.

Tami created these embellished Halloween candle holders out of lace, printed spooky images, black rhinestones, and long neck bottles in different sizes.

Lauren found specialty Halloween treat bags at Joann Fabrics and along with silver glitter letters, rhinestones, and a lot of Mod Podge created five small tea light holders to be proud of.

Orange and black tissue paper and more Mod Podge were used to make this fish bowl jack-o-lantern. We can’t wait to see it all lit up for Halloween.

Creating a chevron print is no easy feat (as one of our friends discovered). You have to wait for the paint to dry completely before taking off the masking tape. We are anxiously awaiting seeing the finished product in  her Halloween decor.

We hope we have inspired you to take on your own Halloween craft projects or even start your own Craft Club. We will be sharing each month’s projects with you to use as inspiration for your own Craft Club as well. Stay tuned to see how we use our creations in our own personal Halloween decor and for next month’s Craft Club meeting … the theme is Pumpkin Decorating!

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Why do we eat apples dipped in honey on Rosh Hashanah? Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year (based on a lunar calendar). Our biggest wish for the upcoming year is for it to be a “sweet” one. Eating honey starts us off on a “sweet” note.

Today is Rosh Hashanah (well, it actually started last night). We spend our day attending services at Temple with our family and then gathering together for a delicious home-cooked meal at our grandparent’s house. Some Rosh Hashanah staples at “Grandma’s” include: setting her table with her beautiful china dishes, starting our meal with gefilte fish, saying the blessing over a round challah (traditional bread) to celebrate the round cycle of the year, drinking sweet wine, and dipping our apples in honey.

We never like to attend dinner parties empty handed. Giving gifts of apples and honey told our hosts that we are wishing them a sweet New Year as well. We also included Israeli Chocolate Logs and honey candies from the Kosher market.
 
As always, presentation is key. We laid all contents on top of a bed of white stuffing and wrapped it in clear plastic cellophane. These tags were made from scraps of paper used in Tami’s classroom projects (seen on our previous post: A Sweet New Year) and tied together with lime green and burlap ribbon. A white fabric daisy finishes off the look.
At this time of year, Jewish people are reminded of their many blessings and how grateful they are to have supportive family and friends. This Rosh Hashanah, (among many other things) we are truly grateful for our readers. You keep us writing and wanting to create every day. We wish you all a sweet New Year.
 
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