Tag Archives: party

Festive Breakfast-In-Bed Table

18 Jun

We celebrated a wonderful Father’s Day this past week-end.  Usually Father’s Day in Italy is on March 19th but for some reason or another we’ve always celebrated it on the third Sunday of June like in Canada.  Seeing as the kids were all away last week on various school trips they hadn’t really managed to prepare anything special for their beloved Papa.  The panic started setting in on Friday evening so by the time I woke up on Saturday morning all three kids were standing by my bed ready (and stressed) to start crafting.IMG_9161

They decided they wanted to make a really special breakfast in bed.  They wanted to serve fresh fruits, poffertjes (miniature Dutch pancakes), freshly squeezed orange juice and they wanted it served in an extraordinary manner.  After some discussing and sketching we had come up with what we wanted to do and a list of things needed to be bought at the local diy.

IMG_9166The idea was to make a festive breakfast-in-bed table with some over the top decorations.  We bought a piece of wood, 4 wooden furniture legs, a long wooden rod (which we cut in half) and some screws.  For the whole afternoon we were busy sanding, sawing, drilling and painting before it was ready for the fun part.  Decorating.  We used Washi tape to decorate the edges of the table, some ribbon for bows and to wind up the poles and then we sewed our much loved tassels (bought in Morocco) to some pompom string.  The end result was exactly what the kids had in mind.  It may be a little kitsch (ok a lot) but it definitely  let’s the person being served breakfast-in-bed know (loud and clear )that they’re special and loved.  We even managed to only spill one full bottle of juice on our bed during the ceremonial breakfast.  That’s serious progress from last time.IMG_9204

And of course the little one of the family insisted on being served lunch in bed to get the full feel of the festive-breakfast-in-bed -table experience.

This will become standard practice for any special occasion, vip visitors or just when we feel a family member is in need of little extra attention and love.  We’ll be able to easily change the decorations for every occasion as well.  I’m thinking miniature garlands, pompoms, special placemats and napkins!  The options are endless.

Gnocco Fritto

20 Sep

This past week-end the parents of an Italian friend of ours invited us to their annual end of summer party.  It’s an occasion for the extended family and friends to get together before winter starts and it, of course, revolved around food.  But not just any food.  Aunts and cousins from the Emilia-Romagna area of Italy came up to prepare the famous gnocco fritto.

Gnocco fritto is a fried dough that is served with cold sliced meats and cheeses.  They are absolutely delicious.  And addictive.  And rich.  Imagine eating a piece of fried dough with cheese and pancetta on top?  I managed to scoff down a good 4 or 5 but I did see some people who were closer to 20.  I’m surprised I didn’t see some of them passed out under the various fruit trees by the end of the afternoon (especially since there were many bottle of Lambrusco consumed as well).

These ladies started preparing the pasta early in the morning and worked straight through to late afternoon frying up pan after pan of these light and crispy gnocco.

My dainty daughters who have miniature sized stomachs managed to eat 1 1/2 gnocco.  This is Nico eating his 8th (and they wonder why their little brother who is 2 years younger weighs more than them!).

I took along some mini cupcakes.  The Italians thought they were the sweetest looking cakes they’d ever seen.  I’m pretty sure only my kids actually ate them though.  I saw many of the Italians eating the gnocco fritto with fruit salad on top for dessert.  They told me it “cleaned the gnocco out of their system”.

The party took place in a lovely field with fruit trees of every kind.  And 6 alpacas staring us from the other side of a fence.  I think they were probably thrown at least one gnocco fritto during the party.

Preparazioni…

20 Mar

The time has come to start the planning, organising and decorating for my twin daughters’ birthday.  And this year being the big double digit birthday means they’ll be a lot to celebrate and with a lot of people.

I went into my sewing room with plans to organise laundry and iron.  This is what I did instead.  Not sure if it’s going to be a pinata (all that work to be bashed to pieces!?) or a decoration to hang from a tree.   Now off to organise some surprise activities for the girl’s party this week-end…

Fred’s Mini Cupcakes

11 Jan

My mother catered my grandmother’s 90th birthday party last week and there were these mini cupcakes that were divine (baked by Fred’s Salon Cafe & Gallery in Halifax).  There was Chocolate Pomegranate and Salted Caramel (or Apple butterscotch…dang I forget).  So delicious.

I think I’ll be giving these recipes a try very soon.

Dolcetto o scherzetto

1 Nov


I live in a very small Italian town.  I think the latest population count was around 3000.  Usually Halloween isn’t celebrated or even known in Italy but in our little village it is the most awaited evening of the year for at least 150 of the 3000 inhabitants.  I guess the fact there are a few North Americans living here has helped the adoption of Halloween (fun fact…we are 3 North Americans with twins in this ever so small paese…something in the water?).

Halloween is my opportunity to make all sorts of delicious North American specialties for the locals to try.  So far they’ve been very fond of all the new desserts.  Cheesecake, cupcakes, pumpkin pies, Hello Dolly squares….it’s possible they all went to bed with a bad case if indigestione.

Black and orange aren’t my favourite colour palattes to work with so I’ve decided to use the colours that inspire me.  Plus, we’re in Italy…it’s not like they know Halloween is all about dark and dreary.It’s amazing what kids can do with a few used greasy pizza boxes.

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