Registry Must: Holiday Dishes, Linens and Decor

My Pasture Bunny plates make me so happy every time I pull them from our credenza just as winter’s chilling out, warmer days start creating those flowery-scented breezes, and pasty arms bravely go out without a jacket. When these little guys get on the table, it usually means spring cleaning has happened, and we’re getting ready for another Easter dinner at our place.

These special plates, linens, and ancillary items like pillows and even little wooden spring signs call out the fanfare for a bright, springtime mindset with lots of texture and color, just like the scenery outside after such a long season of blah.

I’m sure your bridal registry is going to be amazing with all of those awesome kitchen gadgets (can I just tell you how much I love my cookie dough/meatball scoops?!) and I wanted to remind you before it’s too late to add into your registry some great, seasonal/holiday dish and linen sets like our super-cute Pasture Bunny pieces from Pottery Barn.

They’re just lovely, and don’t forget that wedding and shower guests are always looking for holiday-centric gifts to give you, knowing that you’ll feel just like this — always thrilled, joyful and renewed when you pull your holiday dish sets, table runners, napkins, pillows, etc. from storage, ready for party season to begin. They know how happy holiday items will make you, and maybe you’ll even be reminded of them each time you use them. That’s way better to the sentimental gift-giver than 1/8th of your bedding set. 🙂

So load up your registry with holiday items that turn a regular room into a festive, cheerful scene where so many new memories are made with family and friends. Load them on your registry, and remember to check into your registry’s completer program that could give you a nice-sized % off on any items remaining on your gift list after the wedding. And keep checking back year after year. We’re on Year 11 of our marriage and still finding cute Pasture Bunny set additions that we HAVE to have. We’ll definitely boost our tabletop adorableness with more of these fun finds — even now, they connect us to that fun season of building our gift registry and sneaking looks to see which items were disappearing from our registry as the big day approaches. New Pasture Bunny takes us back there, and it’s a springtime joy!

Happy registering, happy spring, and happy shopping!

Something New! Ayesha Curry’s “The Seasoned Life” for Your Registry

Bridal shower guests LOVE giving cookbooks as gifts! You simply can’t lose with a buzzy, beautiful cookbook that captures a celebrity chef’s sparkle and skill and whichever kind of recipes you’re hungry for now — keto, GF, quick, comforting, southern, and so on.

Here’s my pick:

blog books ayesha curry seasoned life

How lovely is Ayesha Curry? She’s got that fun-girl energy, excellence in the kitchen, family-friendly dishes, and always a mix of inspiration. I set her TV show to record even if it’s going to be all reruns all day. Don’t care. Love it that much. Recipes to die for, intros to kitchen gear, family visits, al fresco dining, and those cutie kids. All of this great energy, sparkle and great taste comes through in “The Seasoned Life,” and here are my picks for some of the best dishes in this cookbook: Smoked Salmon Scramble. Seriously. Made easy, and finished with a mastery of garnishing that creates a wish to get better at the garnish. Delish, and a fab pick for any bridal brunch or the wedding morning breakfast. Love this one.

Her Making Dinner Happen is one of the warming chapter openings, inviting you into Ayesha’s kitchen with her family, and you just have a seat at the table, or giving her in-progress recipe a taste. “Dinner is also the meal that draws in the most memories” gets you in a reminiscing mood with Ayesha, and this is a great time to look back with gratitude on all of the family dinner memories you have with your inner circle. And White Chocolate Bread Pudding at the end of this book with the desserts (many of them impressively low in sweet stature) completes the equivalent of a great meal. Fabulous finds happen everywhere in this cookbook, on so many levels and in so many categories, with helpful charts and lists like the mix-ins salad chart that’s going to send you right to the crisper. This is a good one, sure to get lots of ooohs and ahhhs if you’re among the brides who open their bridal shower gifts in front of the shower guests. (Not everyone does. We didn’t. People lived. Cake was had.)

I’m excited to open the doors of my book reccs starting with Ayesha’s gorgeous book, for your wedding registry or for a self-bought treat to stave off wedding stress. Books can always rescue you, so I’ll share more of my favorite registry books coming up here!

Hey, as always, thanks for following me here on the blog, and on my social media spots. Many of you know that I’ve been dancing with grief the past few years, and no one tells you that it’s going to take a long time to not just get back to normalcy but to see some slivers of color in the clouds where new joys are coming through. I haven’t really enjoyed a book club novel for years, understandably. I’ve started a few, then put them down, picked them up, then put them down and fired up Netflix. I just couldn’t connect, just couldn’t be there. Then I chanced upon Ashley Spivey’s Book Club and a DM from Ashley led me to her bubbly, energetic, kind, and generous circle of readers. It was exactly what I needed. Exactly exactly. So I am re-reading those sputter-stop novels (Tea Girl?! Really?! I couldn’t get into Tea Girl?!) and jumping into the big names of now (Where the Crawdads Sing, etc.) with my love of reading — and reviewing and recommending — all shined up with a vibrance even my husband has noticed. I’m sure there’s some kind of article out there somewhere on how reading fulfills the soul, in part helping to add extra light to a relationship. Don’t need an article on that. It’s just true.

So if you’re hurting in your wedding planning season, or any other kind of straining season, grab a great novel, crack open a cookbook and some farm-fresh eggs, and just breathe in all that new energy. That’s what I’m going to be doing here on the blog for a while. I published by 38th wedding planning book, I’m turning 50 in about 3 months (!!!) and I’m navigating a post-grief life. Book titles are popping up in my mind, and I’m editing my next novel, so this is a coasting with sea air blowing my hair around after a loooong pedal up that hill.

Happy reading, and hugs to you and yours!

Check Out My Wedding Registry Tips in This Fab Guide by Wedding Paper Divas and Best Buy!

WPD_RegistryChecklist_1200x628

It’s an excellent morning here! We’re so excited to share this fabulous Wedding Registries Guide, created by Wedding Paper Divas in partnership with Best Buy. It’s filled with phenomenal gift registry tips from an array of wedding experts, and WPD included a great collection of my own wedding registry tips and trends!

Check out all the sections of their amazing wedding registry guide, and get ready for your gift registry to surpass your expectations, for your wedding guests to be really impressed by your gift list, and for each wave of wonderful gifts you receive to fully delight you both!

Thank you, WPD and Best Buy, for including me in this awesome guide!

Fab Find! Pottery Barn’s Easter Bunny Tableware

pottery bunny 4

Yes, you can add holiday items to your bridal registry! Wedding guests always want to get you fun, fabulous bridal shower and wedding gifts you’re definitely going to use, and it’s so fun for guests to know you’ll think of them every time you DO use their gifts — especially for a holiday celebration!

During an excursion to the Short Hills Mall, my husband and I stopped in at Pottery Barn, and we impulse-bought a set of Pasture Bunny dishes that are so adorable, we changed our Easter brunch plans from a lavish hotel brunch to a party at our house…just so we could use our bunny plates!

When you add holiday items to your wedding registry, you add a dose of fun to your gift selection, and you get all of those magnificent holiday décor and serveware items to enjoy forever.

Here are some more of my faves from Pottery Barn’s bunny collection, on sale right now for 20% off — which makes them even better [sale is active now; check to make sure sale prices are still available when you shop!]

Pasture Bunny Dishes: http://www.potterybarn.com/products/pasture-bunny-plate/?pkey=cgifts-easter&

pottery bunny

Twig Charger: http://www.potterybarn.com/products/twig-charger-sp15/?cm_src=AutoRel

pottery bunny2

Pasture Bunny Napkins: http://www.potterybarn.com/products/pasture-bunny-napkin/?cm_src=AutoRel

pottery bunny 3

Pasture Bunny Serve Bowl: http://www.potterybarn.com/products/sculpted-bunny-serve-bowl/?pkey=cgifts-easter&

pottery bunny 5

Bunny Cupcake Stand: http://www.potterybarn.com/products/bunny-stoneware-cake-cupcake-stand/?pkey=cgifts-easter&

pottery bunny 6

Fab Find! Mastrad Macaron DIY Baking Set AND Whipper Mousse Gift Set

mastrad macaron set

Here’s another double-find that really impressed me as I searched for the coolest new items to add to gift registries and use for your budget-cutting DIY party prep: Mastrad has an amazing collection of fun and modern cooking and baking kits and supplies that really stand out, and when I tried this ultra-fun Macaron Baking Set, it became a Must for the baking bride’s bridal registry!

mastrad macaron baking set 1

mastrad macaron cookbook

Here are the Mastrad site’s details on it:

For the creative baker in all of us! The macaron baking set has all the proper accessories to make homemade macarons just like the pros! This apart of our silicone bakeware and cookware products.

– The set comes with a macaron cookbook, 1 silicone macaron baking sheet (small ridge), and a silicone pastry bag with accessories.

– Use the silicone pastry bag (with 6 different nozzle options!) to fill the silicone baking sheet; the flexible, non-stick baking sheet holds the baking mixture in place and guarantees perfectly sized macarons every time.

– Macaron Cookbook comes with over 30 sweet and savory recipes

And now for my other Fab Find item….

mastrad whippermastrad whipper boxmastrad whipper mousee cookbook

Next up is one of my favorite Add This fab finds for your bridal registry, since you’re going to use this baby all the time, for party treats and special accents to romantic desserts you’ll make for each other.

The Mastrad Whipper Mousse Gift Set  helps you whip up creamy, dreamy mousses and toppings for your favorite desserts, and also add some presentation flair to your dessert dishes, at, say an engagement party, bridal shower, the wedding, and all parties you’ll host in your happily ever after. The whipper canister lets you make hot or cold, sweet or savory mousses and creams and I found my husband volunteering to take over mousse-whipping duty for our recent cocktail party!
Mastrad’s Mousse Gift Set includes:

0.5L Gourmet Mousse Whipper
1 Whipper Stand
Mousse Recipe Book

Check out the Mastrad site to see their huge collection of fabulous items for your bridal gift registry, and keep a special eye out for their kits — which wedding and shower guests love to give. One of my fun finds is this Crepe Making Kit:

mastrad crepesYou’ll find a lot to shop from here, and your gift registry can turn into a DIY chef’s delight if you load it up with Mastrad items and fun picks, and here’s a great tip: if you make sure these are on your registry very, very soon after you get engaged, friends and relatives will surely snap those gifts up off your registry for engagement presents, sending them to you NOW, which means you get to use them in your pre-wedding party DIY preps!

Share them with your bridesmaids, so that they can plan your bridal shower and bachelorette party for less, and personalize the snacks, bites and desserts to the party theme!

bridesmaidonabudget

www.sharonnaylor.net/books.htm

Wedding Registry Smarts: Register for Christmas and Holiday Items Now & Use Them Forever

xmas plates etsy

Now’s the time to add lots of Christmas, Hanukkah and holiday decor, party serveware and other festive items to your wedding registry, so that your registry has a fabulous holiday flair to it, and so that you’ll get terrific items you’ll use during every holiday season all throughout your marriage. Every time you pull out these Christmas dishes, for instance, you’ll remember the person who gave them to you as a fun bridal shower gift pick. Guests LOVE it when they can get you items you’ll adore, and that will become a great part of your holiday memories.

Check out my list of Christmas and holiday items to add to your wedding registry list, starting with great holiday-themed dishes like the ones shown above.

1. Holiday-themed dishes, platters, bowls, chip and dip set, cheeseboards, and other party serveware in a matching design. They don’t have to be winter white…bright jewel tones are in right now, as are silvers and other neutrals.

From Overstock.com

From Overstock.com

2. Champagne glasses, stemware and barware

3. Cheese slicing knifes and appetizer utensils

4. Appetizer plates in sets of 12, for when you host holiday parties

BedBathandBeyond.com

BedBathandBeyond.com

5. Festive holiday table linens, table runners and napkins — in 2 or 3 different designs, for when you’ll be hosting multiple parties!

6. Hot chocolate mugs

PlowandHearth.com

PlowandHearth.com

7. Hot cocoa making machine

8. Tea caddies and tea pot sets

9. Tree stands

PotteryBarn.com

PotteryBarn.com

10. Tree skirt

11. Mantel fabric decor runner

12. Fireplace candle holder stand

13. Tall pillar candle stands

14. Candle holder votive sets

Houzz.com

Houzz.com

15. Napkin rings

16. Centerpiece vases

17. Place card holders

PlowandHearth.com

PlowandHearth.com

18. Holiday pillows

19. Holiday throws

20. Holiday decor items

21. Gift wrap supply organizer and storage bins

wonderful life 222. Collection of holiday movies on DVD for family viewing nights

23. LED outdoor lights

24. Holiday card display stands

BakedCo.com

BakedCo.com

25. Holiday cookie press sets, and other baking supplies like cookie sheets, springform pans, cupcake tins and tiers, rolling pins, cookie cutters, the works.

Book Expo Report 2012: Fab Books You Have to Add to Your Registry!

Waking up on Book Expo day is like waking up on Christmas morning, knowing I’m about to enter a wonderland filled with amazing newly-released books (putting the panic about books going ‘under’ to bed) meeting celeb authors, the spectacle, the excitement, the mingling with my top editors at all the big houses…how the majors set up their massive booths like living rooms. PR genius create bigtime shows for their authors, and I find amazing picks for you to add to your bridal registry.

The first from the 2012 show has to be Rachael Ray’s new cookbook Burgers, which created a line around the room, and Jane Seymour looked gorgeous signing a paper clock item for her new book. No book, but the chance to meet Ms. Seymour, who did have the Open Hearts necklace on.

The cookbook Queens of publishing, like Chronicle and Shadow Mountain, had gorgeous cookbooks that have to hit your registry list to create a packed kitchen library of books, and I spotted terrific travel guides and cultural titles.

Book Expo can be a bit of scrum, with publishers piling up giveaway books in pre-edited bound form (called galleys) that librarians and book editors like myself are invited to take, and when those freebie piles are spotted, there’s a lot of diving and pushing to get a copy. I only take the ones I know I can review for my bridal audience, and understand the publisher’s frustration when attendees grab everything in sight, like Willy Wonka’s chocolate garden room at the factory. I’ve found some great stuff at Expo and included fab find books in my Bridal Guide roundups, featured authors in my Creators Syndicate columns and more, but most of all just like being in the book mecca to hang out with my editors and pore over the new releases, beam at the sight of buyers sitting down with the special teams groups to place mega-orders of books.

Here is one of my own books, which I was invited to sign at Book Expo two years ago! And I noted a bunch of the fitness and wellness books new from my publisher GPP to feature on my many bridal blogs.

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bride tide badgeMy book reviews went up on so many of the top bridal blogs, as well as on my Aisle Files column at New Jersey Bride, and you can look forward to my next report from the 2013 Book Expo at the Javits, where I’ll find the best books on cooking, home, travel, floral design, fashion, DIY brilliance, and especially awesome novels and novel series that will transport you out of wedding world, relax you and get you totally into a new series or author. That’s a terrific wedding present!