Tips For Organizing A Surprise Wedding Your Mom Won’t Even See Coming

Posted by on Jan 6, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

After months of flipping through bridal magazines and asking your married friends for advice on venues, caterers and flowers, you’re no closer to planning the wedding of your dreams. Instead of planning a “traditional” affair, you’ve decided to shock your friends and family by throwing a surprise a wedding that no one will see coming. However, the only problem is, you don’t know where to begin. Here are a few simple tips that will help you plan an unforgettable surprise wedding: Creating the Perfect Cover Story If your family and friends are spread across the country, the biggest issue you’ll face is creating an event or excuse big enough to warrant their time and the hassle of traveling. For example, ask your spouse-to-be to tell everyone they’re throwing a surprise engagement, and they want everyone special in the individual’s life to be there. Avoid telling everyone you’re throwing an anniversary party or a family reunion. Chances are they will want to help, which will ruin the real surprise! What ever you choose, it’s vital the cover story is believable! Mailing out invitations is another helpful idea, as this helps ensure everyone knows the event is as casual or formal as you want. Providing a specific time also helps ensure you get everyone to the venue on time, which allows you to make one, big reveal. However, if you’re having trouble getting the really important people in your life to commit, including siblings, parents and grandparents, consider letting them in on the surprise. You won’t get to see the looks on their faces when you say the surprise “I Do’s,” but at least you’ll have a little more help with the planning! Organizing the Event Once you have a rock solid cover story created, it’s time to start actually planning the event. If the affair is small enough to plan and execute on your own, go ahead and try to organize everything on your own, from the food to the decorations and dessert. However, if you’re planning a larger wedding, it’s important to find vendors that are both available and discrete. For example, when it comes to the venue, choose a space that your friends and family don’t frequent. In other words, don’t throw the wedding or reception at your family’s favorite restaurant or a venue owned by a friend or loved one. Here are a few simple tips that can help ensure your wedding is amazing, while staying completely secret: Make It Known The Wedding is a Secret – From the florist to the caterer, Brides urges you to let the vendors know over and over this wedding is a secret, and that when it’s time for the big...

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How To Safely Avoid Food Allergens In A Restaurant

Posted by on Dec 19, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

According to research, as many as 15 million Americans have food allergies, and the number is growing. Studies show that food allergies in children increased at a rate of 50% between 1997 and 2011. Food allergies can be life-threatening. Individuals with food allergies need to stay away from the offending allergen or they could risk going into anaphylaxis shock, which could lead to death. Given the risks, it can be difficult for people with food allergies to eat in restaurants. If you or a loved one has a life-threatening allergy, there are specific things you need to do when dining in restaurants. Here are a few tips that may help save your life. Speaking With the Manager Given the increasing prevalence of food allergies, many Italian restaurants are training their managers how to safely handle customers who have food allergies. Before you enter the establishment, call and speak with a manager about your food allergy. Sometimes, it’s best to avoid the establishment altogether if the offending allergy is used in many dishes. For example, a restaurant chain that places a bowl of peanuts on each table would definitely be a no-go for someone who has a peanut allergy. Tell the manager when you are expecting to arrive at the restaurant, and ask to reserve a table that can be prepared for you prior to your arrival. That way, the table can be wiped down before you arrive to reduce the risks of the offending protein being left on the table by the previous diners. This is important because a clean dishcloth should be used to wipe down the table. Ordering Safe Foods & Avoid Cross Contamination Of course, the offending allergen cannot be an ingredient in your meal. The manager can tell you which foods in the restaurant will be safe for you. However, even if the allergen is not an ingredient, there may be a risk of cross-contamination. Cross contamination can occur with just one small protein from the allergen ending up in your food. Many restaurants will need to prepare your food separate from other foods to avoid cross-contamination. For example, if you have a gluten allergy, your food should not be prepared with the same utensils that were used to prepare a dish with gluten as an ingredient. Sometimes, kitchen staff will simply rinse off utensils in between various foods, but this is not a safe practice for someone with a severe food allergy. A clean, disinfected utensil will need to be used. In some restaurants, the manager will prepare your dish for you to ensure there is no cross contamination. If this is not a common practice in the restaurant where you will be dining,...

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Preparing For Your First Restaurant Inspection

Posted by on Oct 3, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

If you have dreams of owning your own restaurant to share your favorite recipes and culinary skills with the community, your eatery will need to pass a health inspection before opening. You must purchase up-to-date equipment and make sure the facility is clean, safe and meets local health codes. The following guide can help you prepare for a pre-opening health department inspection and begin creating a checklist of tasks. Food Handling You will not be able to prepare food without proper food handling equipment. This includes standard items such as Cutting boards Knives and cleavers Film and foil dispensers Oven mitts Bowls Pots, pans and boilers Spoons, tongs and ladles Thermometers A health inspector will scrutinize the condition, quality and cleanliness of your food handling equipment. Even after you open for business, health inspectors may have the legal right to show up at any time and scrutinize the restaurant. Consequently, you need to make sure that your food handling equipment is always clean and stored in the correct place. An example of a common food handling hazard includes failing to sanitize a cutting board when switching between raw meat and cooked food. In fact, according to a study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control, 29 percent of restaurant managers indicated that they practiced inadequate chicken handling. Safety Equipment and Fire Prevention Approximately 5,900 restaurant fires occur annually according to the U.S. Fire Administration. Health and fire codes mandate that you equip your restaurant with safety features such as a sprinkler system, fire extinguishers, and fire detectors. Many restaurant supply stores will carry these items as well as wall brackets and extinguisher cabinets. You must also make sure that all of the electrical equipment in your restaurant has proper wiring and grounding. Inspectors can also cite you for not labeling electrical devices such as breaker switches and outlets properly. Storage Areas The key avoiding citations for storage areas is cleanliness and space. Your employees and cleaning crew need to make sure that aisles are always clear with proper clearance for moving safely in between shelves and cabinets. Surfaces and floors should also be free of debris. All of your shelving should be sturdy and in good condition. Refrigerated and cold storage areas must always be set at the correct temperature to keep food from spoiling. You can also be cited for storing food at an incorrect temperature, a violation that can occur if the thermometers in your refrigerators and cooling areas fail. Seating and Exterior Areas It is a no-brainer that you want the seating area and exterior spaces to be in good condition. You will not be able to attract customers if your dining area looks shoddy and...

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