We have recorded or first Facebook Live episode and what a fun experience it was! In this first episode you will meet:
UPDATED VIDEO February 23, 2017
Some pictures from the night... I think you can tell we had a good time!
With all my recent holiday hosting it has occurred to me that planning a successful party is a tad bit more difficult now that I have a baby. Both of my latest shindigs (Thanksgiving and an ornament exchange) were a success but it wasn’t until the very last moment when I was doing my final once over of the house when I realized I was completely flowerless. Such an amateur move and in the mad rush of trying to pull it all together, flowers were the last thing on my mind. At the time, I cursed myself for not being able to throw something together with props I had on hand but after spending the evening with the ladies from Sage Market & Design I realized I probably could have. They created a special and (simple) holiday DIY that you can put together on the fly.
We used greens as the base for the arrangement. The key is to add a variety of greens to create layer and depth. It’s also important to incorporate different size stems. Depending on your vase size, eye ball it by putting the stem up to the vase to see what the arrangement needs. One of the most helpful tips I learned was to create an arrangement that will look good from all angles. Typically, I would focus on what I would consider the front and put all my time and attention into that one spot. By creating an arrangement that looks great at all angles you aren’t limiting where you can put it.
Winter isn’t always considered the most floral of seasons but there are ways to create arrangements with beautiful natural elements like berries, twigs and acorns.
Begin the arrangement with the greens and start building, using different plants to add depth. Remember to incorporate different stem lengths. Work around the whole vase so it looks good from all angles. Make sure that the part of the stem that is in the water is free of greens, flowers etc. For some of the thicker stems you can split it at the very end, just slightly. It will absorb water more easily and stay alive longer. Once you have a base of greenery you can decide what else you'd like to add. For this arrangement, it could have been complete after all the greens were in but we added some extras to make it more festive. White and red flowers, berries, twigs, acorns are all festive options. An interesting vase like the one we used will also create more of a wow factor.
Thanks to Beverly & Jordan for hosting us and teaching us a few things that will go a long way. Sage also has pre-made arrangements that you can pick up for the holidays or call in and they can create custom arrangements that fit your aesthetic. Check their web site for a variety of events they host like wreath making classes, a fun ladies night out! Happy Holiday's!
http://www.sagemarketdesign.com - 58 Merrimac St., Horton's Yard, Newburyport MA
My favorite time of the year is officially upon us and though it can be a busy month, it doesn't have to be a stressful one. We often forget during this mad Christmas rush that the most important part is spending time with loved ones, embracing traditions and gift giving. It's not the amount you spend, it's the thought that went into it and stumbling around the mall is not my idea of holiday cheer. I've created a gift guide from my go-to Newburyport businesses. Bundle up, grab a coffee and stroll through downtown and hit up our local shops where you are sure to find something for everyone on your list.
One of my favorite events during this time of year is Newburyport's Invitation night - the first three Friday's in December. Local businesses and shops stay open till 9pm and host evening shopping with treats and drinks. It's a fun way to tackle your holiday list.
The best part of shopping local is finding something unique. I take care in the items I'm gifting and appreciate that by shopping small I'm giving an gift that isn't in mainstream stores. Newburyport is home to all kinds of shops and specialty items.
By shopping small, you are supporting our community. Happy shopping!
With Thanksgiving quickly approaching and it being my first year hosting a big holiday, I thought what better way to kick off my hostess with the mostess status than with a proper cocktail. The focus of Thanksgiving is always the food and while I’m determined to bring it home with a great menu - a specialty cocktail makes just as good of an impression. We asked our friends at The Poynt Newburyport to create something special and to embody all those autumnal flavors that we love. Brett, the bartender used his wizardly skills to create a flavorful twist on an Old Fashioned, The Courier. With a strong bourbon base and just the right amount of sweetness, it's one that all of your guests will be sure to love.
If I learned anything watching Brett, it's that cocktail making is an art form and at The Poynt the bar focus is to impress you with the details. I watched as he used a piece of wood to infuse the rocks glass with hickory flavor, light orange peels on fire and torch Pattypan squash just to go above and beyond in creating something unique. The best part about this cocktail is that it wasn't too strong for me to enjoy.
For One Drink
1 oz Michter's Bourbon
1 oz Christian Drouin Selection Calvados
1/2 ox Flag Hill Maple Liqueur (Lee, NH)
1/2 oz sage/brown sugar/squash reduction
2 dashes of Reagan's orange bitters
For the syrup - 8oz
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup water
1/4 peeled & diced acorn squash
20 sage leaves
In a medium saucepan boil brown sugar, water and squash until the squash has softened. Remove from heat and add sage. Cover with foil and let cool completely. Double strain the syrup once cooled.
Stir the bourbon, calvados, maple liqueur, brown sugar reduction and orange bitter in a Yarai glass. Strain over formatted block of ice into a double rocks glass. Garnish with orange peel.
Thanks to The Poynt & The Wish Basket of Newburyport. I hope everyone has a happy Turkey Day! Cheers!
Hello Friends! Let me introduce myself, I’m Laura and I am a writer here at NBPT.LIFE. A little about me, I am a native of the Northshore and until recently I was living in Newburyport with my husband in a tiny little apartment downtown. Now you can find us in Ipswich smack dab in the middle of suburbia where we bought our first house. Our move was inevitable but the fact that our precious baby girl arrived in August really gave us that extra push (no pun intended) to get going and settle into a bigger place. It's been a busy couple of months with our newfound roles as parents but I have to say, I think we've found our calling.
I have lots of passions that include – travel, cooking, entertaining, interior design and fashion. You can pretty much count on me talking about all of those subjects given the chance. Especially travel, I’ll really chat you up about the places I’ve been. I’m a steak & potatoes girl and my favorite drink is a Gin & Tonic but a close second is a Colaweisen which is Hefeweizen beer mixed with Coke don’t knock it till you try it. If I had to pick between a piece of chocolate cake or a bowl of salty chips, I’d pick the chips every time. The best gift I’ve ever been given was a world map from my husband on our wedding day. I’ve never met anyone famous but I did see a Lifetime movie actress once on the streets of New York City and my best friend and I followed her around for a while which wasn't creepy at all. My favorite season is autumn and favorite holiday is Thanksgiving - which we are hosting for the first time this year, wish me luck!
For the last few years I've been working on my personal blogs and doing freelance writing for local businesses. Here at NBPT.LIFE, I've been given the outlet to create content on the topics I love. I know this city and I love the community and I'm so excited to share my experiences with you. Thanks for reading!
A friend gave me a cider donut last week and I have been craving another ever since. So on this beautiful Columbus "Indigenous Peoples" Day I decided to make a quick trip to Cider Hill Farm. Cider Hill is a perfect place to visit this time of year. They have apple picking, a wide selection of pumpkins, fresh kettle corn, honey, jams/jellies, cider, and cider donuts!
It was such a nice day out I decided to bring my camera.
Mission Accomplished. I felt really good after visiting Cider Hill Farm. I don't know if it was the fall air, everyones excited energy, or the three donuts I ate waiting in line.
My question to you, who else has good cider donuts?
We wanted to create a local resource for our neighbors and visitors alike. We love our community and are proud to use our marketing to show everyone how lucky we are to live, work, & play here. #nbptlife
One of my favorite summertime activities is throwing together a picnic. Through trial and error, I've realized that finding the perfect location is key. The locale needs be quiet, pretty and for me, free from buzzing insects. With Newburyport's downtown being such a premiere attraction for locals and tourists alike, some of the most picturesque spots just outside of downtown go unnoticed. Atkinson Common is one of those spots. It's quiet with lush gardens, interesting structures and and plenty of shaded areas perfect for spending an afternoon. Recently, a couple girlfriends (and their babies) and I headed there for a lunch time picnic. We posted up in the grass under a family of trees where we could cool off, chat and grub.
Though Atkinson Common is hardly a secret spot, it is rarely busy and easily missed when driving down High Street. You are likely to see a few dog walkers and strollers but on a whole it is relatively quiet and private. The common boasts a fountain, gazebo and a stone tower fit for Rapunzel. It is a popular spot for low key weddings and is frequented by photographers for photo sessions year round. Spring & summer are ideal times to visit for a picnic but autumn is particularly beautiful with all the color changes. Winter months can be tough but if you play it right and visit during a light dusting of snow, you'll feel like you're in the middle of a winter wonderland.
I like to keep my picnic menus simple with small picky treats and one salad like option for everyone to share. To start we nibbled on lemon & garlic marinated olives and drank sparking lemonade. I made a big batch of my favorite pesto potato salad as a main course and we finished it off with mini chocolate crepes and peaches.
Pesto Potato Salad
- 1 lb. Fingerling Potatoes
- 1 dozen hard boiled eggs (discard the yolk)
- 1 lb. cooked green beans cut in half
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes
- 7 oz. jar of pesto sauce
Place potatoes in a large pot and add cold water to cover by 3 inches. Add salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until tender, 10 minutes. Drain and cut in half.
For the hard boiled eggs, place eggs in a pot to cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Place in a cold water bath, drain and peel. Discard yolk. Cut into small pieces.
Place green beans into a medium sized pot and cover with water – bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, 5 minutes. Drain and add to a cold water bath. Once cool to the touch, drain and cut in half.
Once all ingredients have cooled, mix in a large bowl with pesto sauce.
As long as you’re with good friends, eating good food and aren’t being buzzed by pesky bugs - a picnic in the park is a near perfect way to spend an afternoon. There’s just something about hanging in the grass that makes life feel carefree. To visitors, Atkinson Common is a hidden gem worth being discovered so pack up the basket and indulge in one of the best picnic spots on the north shore. Happy picnicking!