Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Episode 09: Wine Pairing for the Holidays with Vicki Miller from Vinocity Events



During Episode 09 of Gatherings Podcast we talk with Vicki Miller, the founder of Vinocity about wine pairing for the holidays. Actually, we start by asking about wines for the holiday and end up asking every question we've ever had about wine when it comes to party hosting. Just for you. (Alright, alright, and a little bit for us.)

Vicki Miller is a long-time student and teacher of wine.  She was a practicing attorney in Philadelphia for 16 years at a major U.S. firm and has studied wine for over 20 years.  She is WSET Level 3 Wines & Spirits Certified.

Five years ago Vicki founded Vinocity and began teaching about wine.  Vinocity plans and hosts wine tasting events for corporate clients, non-profit institutions, and associations, but with a unique approach.  Vinocity events combine the educational aspects of a wine course with the socially engaging aspects of a wine tasting with friends.  These events tell the rich story of wine, from the grapes, to technology, to the natural perils that challenge the winemaker.  Guests gain information they can use the next time they select a wine and a few stories they can tell at their next cocktail party. 
  • Meet Vicki
    • How she got started with wine
    • Starting Vinocity 
  • Wine for the Holidays
    • Wine for Thanksgiving
    • Pairing Wines: Red vs. White, Bold vs. Light
    • "Middle of the Road" Wines
  • All our Wine Questions Answered
    • How much wine should I buy?
    • How do I save open bottles of wine?
    • Jess' weeknight Bolognese sauce recipe
    • How do I pair wines with my menu?
    • Should your wines be consistent through the meal?
    • How much should you spend on wine?
    • When should you take wine out of the fridge to serve?
    • How do you chill wine really quickly?
    • Are there any foods that you should avoid pairing with wine?
    • What wines should you pair with spicy food?
    • What's your favorite wine to bring to a party?
  • More about Wine
    • More about wine for the holidays
    • More about sparkling wines
    • New Year's
  • What are you planning right now?
    • Chrystina: A trip to Texas
    • Vicki: A birthday dinner party!
    • Jessica: Hunting season
  • What's going on in your kitchen?
    • Jessica: Cooking food from new cultures
    • Vicki: Homemade hummus
    • Chrystina: Cleaning up the pickle juice (literally)
  • How are you staying in touch?
    • Chrystina: Conference follow up emails
    • Vicki: Phone calls with friends
    • Jessica: Christening thank yous and Christmas cards
  • What are you into right now?
    • Jessica: Anthony Bourdain's Parts Unknown
    • Vicki: New granddaughter and The Crown
    • Chrystina: Project MC^2
  • Find Vicki online:
  • Find us online:
We hope you learned something about wine from this conversation, and that it makes pairing wine for the holidays just a little bit easier this year. Stay tuned for our next episode in December!

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Episode 08: The Perfect Tea Party with Andy Hayes




During Episode 08 of Gatherings Podcast we talk with Plum Deluxe founder and creator, Andy Hayes, about hosting tea parties, our favorite teas, thoughtful conversation starters, where to even begin when you're hosting a tea party, and many tea party logistics. You're definitely in for a treat!

Andy Hayes is the founder and creator of Plum Deluxe.  When he's not blending teas or baking up something yummy in the kitchen, he's hiking in the hills around his home of Portland, Oregon.
  • Our love of tea parties
  • Meet Andy
    • Starting Plum Deluxe
    • A Discussion of Tea - Why Tea, the Tea Lifestyle, and Tea Culture
  • Our Favorite Teas
    • Andy: White Tea
    • Jessica: Black Tea & Herbal Tea, Mindful Morning
    • Chrystina: Rooibos & Chai
  • Andy's Party Hosting Style & Moments That Matter
    • Type: Relaxed Eclectic
    • Food Bars
    • Taco Parties
  • Thoughtful Conversation Starters
  • Where to Begin When Hosting a Tea Party
    • The Intention
    • The Tea
  • Tea Party Logistics
  • What are you planning right now?
    • Jessica: Her son's Christening
    • Andy: Couples nights
    • Chrystina: Wine tasting dinner party
  • What's going on in your kitchen?
    • Chrystina: Making peach jam
    • Andy: Tomatoes, figs, and plums
    • Jessica: Preserving, canning, blueberry thyme jam, ears of corn, tomatoes, jalapenos, zucchini bread, and more!
  • How are you staying in touch?
    • Jessica: Birth announcements
    • Andy: Postcard swaps
    • Chrystina: Flying to Nashville
  • What are you into right now?
    • Chrystina: Back into blogging and her new podcast
    • Andy: Baking and pumpkin spice
    • Jessica: Going through cookbooks
  • Find Andy online:
  • Find us online:
We (clearly) loved talking about tea with Andy. And so much more fun ideas for parties came out of this discussion. Can't wait to see what fun tea parties you all decide to host! We'd love to hear about it!

Friday, September 1, 2017

Episode 07: Sunday Pancakes with Roaa




During Episode 07 of Gatherings Podcast we talk with Roaa Elgabrouny about hosting Sunday pancake parties. She's been hosting them for months, but it started long before then when she was inspired by her family's parties in Egypt. We learn a little bit about how parties in Egypt differ from those in the U.S., the strength that mothers have, and how hosting parties is all about the people.

More about Roaa: My name is Roaa elgabrouny. I am an Egyptian international student at Drexel University. I am an avid globe wanderer, a rent-less nomad at heart, and a committed pacifist with strong humanitarian views. I believe in the power of knowledge. Knowing is the only irreversible act: you can love then hate, but you can never know then un-know. Nothing makes me more excited in life than meeting a new person. It’s the most enjoyable experience and it is what I live for. My goal is to meet as many humans around the world from different backgrounds, as I believe that this is the best way to grow my personality and open my mind. I see humanity as a piece of art where every single dot of paint is equally important for the entire picture. Everything and everyone is interconnected through an invisible web of stories. Whether we are aware of it or not, we are all in a silent conversation.

So it's super clear to see why we interviewed her for this episode - a true party planner and people person.
  • Meet Roaa
    • Background
    • How she got interested in hosting parties
    • Sunday pancakes
  • Differences between Parties in Egypt and Parties in the U.S.
    • Favorite foods
  • Pancake Breakfasts
    • How to prepare
    • Handling other people in the kitchen
    • Keeping food warm
    • Egyptian breakfasts
  • Advice for Beginner Party Hosts
    • Know your goals
    • Decide the location
    • Determine the atmosphere
    • Making it feel like home
    • Wash dishes right away
    • Keep it simple
    • You can never make everyone happy
  • What are you planning right now?
    • Chrystina: The Blog Connect 2018
    • Roaa: YouTube Channel
    • Jessica: Family Vacation & Baby
  • What's going on in your kitchen?
    • Jessica: Herbs
    • Roaa: Quinoa 
    • Chrystina: Trying to use all the food
  • How are you staying in touch?
    • Chrystina: Coffee & breakfast dates
    • Roaa: Celebrating Eid & first Sunday pancakes after Ramadan
    • Jessica: Inviting people over
  • What are you into right now?
    • Jessica: Automatic chicken door
    • Roaa: Traveling
    • Chrystina: Spring cleaning
  • Find us online:
We loved (and love) the idea of this Sunday pancake breakfast. It's such a simple way to get started - especially if you remind yourself that it's about the people, not the food. Let us know if you host one of your own!

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Episode 06: Planning the Ultimate Themed Party with Miranda from Spooky Little Halloween




During Episode 06 we talk with Miranda from Spooky Little Halloween about her annual Halloween party, Halloweenie Roast, how she comes up with her themes, how she incorporates that theme through the decor, and the best place to shop for supplies. Also, don't miss our discussions about craft stores, wolf pack emails, watermelon pumpkins, and grilling in the questions at the end of the episode.

Miranda Enzor is the writer and Halloween lover behind spookylittlehalloween.com, the blog dedicated to celebrating October 31st all year long. Halloween has been one of her favorite holidays to celebrate for as long as she can remember. Miranda also host an annual party called Halloweenie Roast and teaches fellow Halloween lovers how to host killer parties through her e-course, Killer Halloween Party.
Do you love Halloween as much as Miranda does? (Or even 25% really, that would still be a heck of a lot.) We'd love to hear about it in the comments below.

PS. Thanks for sticking with us as we figure out the minor sound quality stuff on our podcasting journey. There's still a heck of a lot of great content in here and we hope you enjoy the episode!

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Episode 05: Cookbooks & Pizza Crawls with Sara Cornelius from Cake Over Steak




During Episode 05 we talk with Sara from Cake Over Steak about her favorite cookbooks - as well as how to plan a pizza crawl with your 25 closest friends. We asked her questions about logistics of planning a pizza crawl, who pays - and how they pay, how you keep people moving from location to location, and how to build the schedule for the day. Also, we apologize if you end up filling your Amazon cart full of cookbooks. (Sort of.)

Sara Cornelius is an artist who has combined her creative abilities with her love for home cooking into her illustrated food blog, Cake Over Steak. When she's not at her day job listening to hours of podcasts, she's dreaming up new recipes, testing them in her kitchen, photographing them, illustrating them, and then writing about them on her blog. In the rest of her spare time she enjoys working out (for #balance), reading, planning weird dinner parties and foodie excursions with her friends, and spending time with her husband and their socially awkward dog.
What are some of your favorite cookbooks? We'd love to hear about them in the comments below.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Episode 04: Dinner Party Etiquette with Lizzie Post




During Episode 04 we're chatting with Lizzie Post from the Emily Post Institute about party etiquette. We came prepared with all of our party questions and she was able to help provide insight, tips and tricks, and a few sample scripts along the way. We can't wait for you to check it out!

Lizzie Post, is the great-great-granddaughter of Emily Post and co-author of Emily Post’s Etiquette 19th edition as well as Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette 6th edition and The Etiquette Advantage in Business 3rd edition. She and her cousin Daniel Post Senning are co-presidents of the Emily Post Institute as well as co-hosts of the Awesome Etiquette podcast, where they answer listener questions, and explore the topic of etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty. Lizzie does speaking engagements across the country sharing advice about entertaining, weddings, dating, dining etiquette, tech-etiquette, finance, and lifestyle. She has worked as a spokesperson for companies including Bob Evans, Bank of America, American Express Platinum, AirBnB, and Genentech. She is a columnist with Women’s Running magazine. Lizzie offers a fresh, relatable, perspective with an engaging voice. She delights in tackling etiquette’s taboo topics with the media, making her a popular source. Her interviews include NBC’s The Today Show, Katie, Fox & Friends, Live with Kelly and Michael, The Gayle King Show, The Wendy Williams Show, Slate, Vanity Fair, Time Magazine, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Chicago Tribune, Harper’s Bazaar, Travel & Leisure, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, The Huffington Post and more. 
  • Meet Lizzie
  • Emily Post's Etiquette, the 19th Edition
    • Find the book here on Amazon
    • Keeping etiquette relevant
    • What makes the 19th Edition different
    • Etiquette in the work place
  • Our Etiquette Questions
    • What is the number one most asked question about entertaining at home?
    • What do you think it takes to be a great host?
    • How do you recommend handling situations when there are people who don't know each other at parties?
    • What is your go-to dish to bring to a potluck?
      • Dumplings
      • Artichoke Dip
      • Roasted Red Pepper Dip: Roasted Red Pepper, Clove of Garlic 1-2 cans Chick Peas, Parmesan Cheese, Salt, Pepper
      • Homemade Pita Chips
    • Do you have any advice to deal with the battle of getting people to RSVP?
    • Do you have any hard-and-fast rules that you always hold to when hosting a dinner party?
    • Do you have any advice for being the center of attention at a baby shower?
    • Do you have any housewear guilty pleasures?
  • What are you planning right now?
    • Jessica: Visiting friends
    • Lizzie: Etiquette 19th edition launch, horses, golf, & home repairs
    • Chrystina: Scheduling coffee dates with everyone
  • What's going on in your kitchen?
    • Chrystina: New spice rack
    • Lizzie: Keeping it clean & gifting banana bread recipes
    • Jessica: Baking and foraging
  • How are you staying in touch?
    • Jessica: People are staying in touch with her
    • Lizzie: Message bombing, Facebook messenger, and home visits
    • Chrystina: Sending snail mail
  • What are you into right now?
  • Find us online:
We would love to hear more about your etiquette tips, tricks, and questions below!

Monday, May 1, 2017

Episode 03: Networking Events with Lauren Caselli




During Episode 03 we're chatting with Lauren Caselli from Lauren Caselli Events about life stories, event planning, benefits of facilitation, and all the things. 

Lauren Caselli is a strategic event marketer and facilitator that works with creative corporate and tech companies to help them build brand awareness through top-notch event experiences. In 2015, she founded the Boss Lady Bash, an event for creative female entrepreneurs starting their own businesses without taking big business loans. Selling out 7 times, the Boss Lady Bash is a premier example of how to create connection in an increasingly digital world, and is proof of the continuing value of in-person experiences.

We would love to hear about networking events you've attended (or planned!) in the comments below!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Episode 02: Our Ideal Dinner Parties





  • Our Ideal Dinner Parties
    • Chrystina: indoors, 6 people, one cop out course, no decorations.
    • Jessica: outdoors, +6 people, fire, live music, potluck, dessert cop out.
  • Our Dinner Party Rules
    • Chrystina: be super detailed on the invitation to tell your guests what to expect, what to bring, what to wear, and a general understanding of the menu - and don't forget to offer your guests a hot cup of tea before the night is out!
    • Jessica: make sure there's something for everyone, always have a salad course
  • How to keep the conversation going
  • Other things:
    • Chrystina only made it 16 days on the Whole30.
    • Jessica tells a story about Chauncy's blackout juice.
    • Jessica is answering questions about her baby shower.
    • Jessica got baby chicks.
    • Chrystina tries to figure out how to store tea.
    • Everyone's spring cleaning.
    • Sign up for Jessica's newsletter to get her cookbook.
  • Jessica’s Loving:
    • Organizing
  • Chrystina's Loving:
    • Reading: Strength Finders 2.0
    • Listening to: Ed Sheeran's new album
    • Watching: 30 Rock, Chef's Table
We would love to hear about your ideal dinner party in the comments below!

Episode 01: Our Party Hosting Styles




Show Notes:
We would love to hear about your party hosting style in the comments below!