Wedding Wednesday: Do Bigger Weddings Mean Happier Marriages

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There’s now a scientific reason to increase your guest list at your wedding. A recent study by a pair of psychology researchers from the University of Denver has found that larger weddings may mean stronger marriages.

The study, called the Relationship Development Study, followed 418 people all of whom were single and between the ages of 18 and 40 when they joined the study in 2007 and 2008. Five years later when the researchers checked in with them, all 418 of the participants had gotten married.  The goal of the study was to identify what patterns of behavior tended to set people up for successful and fulfilling marriages. The researchers asked study the participants questions about their marital happiness, how much they confided in each other, if they believed or felt that things were going well in the relationship, and whether or not they had thoughts of divorce. The researchers considered those who ranked in the top 40%  to have “high-quality marriages.”

One of the things that top 40% had in common was that they had weddings with 150 or more guests. The researchers found that 47% of couples that got hitched in front of 150 or more guests had high-quality marriages, compared with only 31% of those who had 50 or fewer guests. That means that couples who had big weddings were 52% more likely to have high-quality marriages than couples who had smaller weddings. The researchers mused that perhaps making the promises to each other in such a public way, made people more likely to commit. Or it could be that having a supportive network that is also committed to your marrige provides a couple with more support.

But all is not lost for those who have more intimate weddings… it should be noted that the marital happiness was self-reported by the couples and there is no real way to judge the veracity. And it was only a 5 year study, so no sense yet of how these happy couples fare after 10, 20 or more years.

 

 

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Tomato And Peach Salad

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There’s a well-known quote that states: “Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit, wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.” While that generally may be good advice, it doesn’t take into consideration this delicious tomato peach salad. Both tomatoes and peaches are in peak season right now, and while it might seem odd at first glance, combining them takes these two disparate  items that taste totally amazing on their own creates a totally different flavor. This sweet and savory salad can be served as part of brunch, lunch or dinner and you can swap out the feta cheese for some mozzarella or burrata.

1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 pound peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced 1/2 inch thick
1 1/2 pounds tomatoes — large ones diced and small ones, like cherry or grape can just be halved
1 tablespoon red or white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
4-5 ounces of crumbled feta cheese
A handful of torn basil leaves

In your serving bowl, combine the onion, peaches, and tomatoes.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, and honey — drizzle the dressing over the fruit mixture, then add the feta and basil and gently toss.

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Pours And Tours: What’s At Our Winebar This Weekend

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Our Pours & Tours are one of our favorite parts of the summer. We love to welcome people into our Watsonville studios and give them a glimpse of how we make Annieglass. And also to highlight another form of local art by serving the really amazing, locally grown and produced,  Santa Cruz and Monterey County wines at our wine tasting bar.

Our free tours and wine tastings are every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, from 12:00 pm to 4:30 pm — tours are at 2pm. You can taste 3 wines for $6 or sit and enjoy a glass. And if you buy a bottle to take home, tasting fee is waived. It’s a great way to spend an afternoon, and explore some great wines. We are featuring wines from two of our favorite  wineries this weekend — Storrs Winery and Ventana.

Storrs 2011 Viento Vineyard White Riesling $17 bottle/$6 a glass
A very dry-styled Riesling bursting with flavors of peaches, apricot and orange blossom.

Storrs 2012 Christie Vineyard Chardonnay $30 bottle/$8 glass
Situated in a sheltered little valley nestled between Aptos & Corralitos, this vineyard has yielded grapes filled with luch varietal fruit, pineapple, pear and mango. Add to this, toasty French oak, hints of vanilla and spice.

Ventana Chardonnay  $17/bottle $7 a glass
Within the Arroyo Seco AVA, the cooler climate allows for longer hang time for the fruit, which translates into more flavor development. The wine is cold fermented to maintain the tropical fruit components present in the grapes. Deliciously light and fresh, but focused, with pineapple and mango notes, apple, pear and spicy tones. The balance of acidity and oak makes it an exceptional sipping wine as well as a perfect food accompaniment. The wine goes through a batonnage treatment on the lees in barrel, which accounts for the creaminess and texture, adding richness that allows it to pair with roast chicken to a roast pork loin.

 Storrs 2011 Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir $36 bottle/$9 glass
Earthy and medium-bodied with bright notes of strawberry. Due to its aging in small French oak cooperage and long-term bottle aging, you will find this wine soft and supple with lovely notes of vanilla.
Double Gold – San Francisco Chronicle 2014

Ventana Rubystone $18/bottle $7 a glass
This is a blend of 60% Grenache and 40% Syrah. The dark ruby color of the blend and the rocky soils where the grapes are grown gave rise to the name “Rubystone”. This is a very silky wine with intense flavors of black cherry and candied apple. It’s full bodied and flavored, with a nicely lingering finish. The Grenache vineyards were planted in 2000 and the Syrah in 1978. Aged in French oak. Pasta dishes with robust sauces, pork loin rubbed in coarsely ground pepper and rosemary, and braised English cut short ribs would be a great match.

Storrs 2010 Rusty Ridge Zinfandel $30 bottle/$8 glass
Big, Rich & Bold! Filled with abundant aromas of raspberry, ripe plum, a touch of spice and violets on the finish. Created from the fruit of old-vine vineyards – this wine will age gracefully for several more years.

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Wedding Wednesdays: Emily Miller & Nathan Weiner

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One of the loveliest things about creating Annieglass is knowing that these pieces will be part of people’s lives for a long time to come. Unlike paintings or sculptures, this is art that will be in people’s lives everyday lives. Tableware is an intimate thing, something that you touch every day and becomes part of your life. And I love when couples register for Annieglass as a wedding gift, knowing that these pieces will be part of their new families and traditions. I talked with Emily Miller & Nathan Weiner, who are getting married this fall about some of their choices. I know Emily’s mother and am thrilled that Emily & Nathan are carrying on the family tradition of Annieglass on their table.

Why did you pick Annieglass?
Emily grew up in Santa Cruz and was always interested in marine biology and the colors of the ocean. And Nathan grew up in both Santa Cruz and Hawaii and has an equal respect for the ocean and marine life. We both scuba dive and love how the Annieglass pieces remind us of water with vibrant natural colors and the forms of both water and marine life. The Annieglass studios have always been a welcoming place to admire new pieces as well as other art and we have always stopped in when passing by.

How do you plan to use what you have registered for in your your married life?
We love to entertain — we chose mostly pieces that we can use for events. However, we love these pieces due to their versatility. We are able to sit down the two of us and enjoy a nice salad or entertain many with beautiful platters. We plan on using the items we registered for  to entertain and also decorate our home, which has a beach theme. While these pieces work particularly beautifully in our coastal themed home, these dishes would be stunning in any décor.

You have great taste, I know that your mother raised you right! Were you influenced by your Mom’s decorating sense, was Nathan?
Both of our mothers have always loved Annieglass pieces, what better gift, stunning and yet classic. Rarely do kitchen and table items have both modern and timeless characteristics. To be honest, they were a large influence in both introducing us to the line as well as how affordable the pieces can be (a common misconception I am finding). While our mothers have had an influence there is a vast variety of items. Both moms recommended beautiful items and we chose appropriate styles that fit with us and our home. We love how the line has items as simple as everyday wear and items that could be used at a special event dinner.

Do you do much cooking and entertaining?
Yes, we love to both cook and entertain. Our favorite items to cook are varying appetizers for parties so the appetizer platters will be perfect for us.

We also make salads on a daily basis and therefore planning on using the (multiple!) bowls we registered for. We plan on entertaining with our registry items as well as using them on a daily basis, we could not be more excited to have more versatile art in our home.

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Bulgur Pomegranate Mint Salad

photo (5)Do you ever cook with bulgur? It’s wheat that’s been parboiled, dried, and cracked into tiny bits. It cooks fast, adds protein and fiber to healthy side dishes or summer salads— and it tastes good! It can be eaten warm with fruits or maple syrup in the morning in place of oatmeal, makes for a great impromptu grain salad for lunch with whatever leftover vegetables you may have from the night before, or it can be used to  create pilaf-style side dishes  at dinner. This salad combines bulgur with pomegranate seeds and shredded mint and it’s super versatile — it can be served warm, room temperature, or even chilled straight from the fridge.

1 cup bulgur
seeds of 1 pomegranate
1 small bunch of fresh mint, leaves chopped or torn
juice of 1/2 lemon
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil — you can also substitute walnut or pistachio oil

Put the bulgur in a bowl, and add about 3/4 cup of boiling water and let it sit for about 15 minutes. The bulgur will be tender but still a little al dente when it’s done. (All the water should be absorbed but if not, you can drain off the excess.) Fold in the lemon juice, oil, pomegranate seed and mint, and stir until well mixed. Transfer to a serving bowl and enjoy!

Put all the ingredients in a bowl

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