Monday, December 22

Season's Greetings!

Dear Friends,

I am taking this opportunity to wish you all a fabulous Christmas and New well as to send you good wishes for 2015.  

It has certainly been a year that raced on by, with so many accomplishments and so much more to come in 2015. Of late I have been taking some time to reflect, commence writing a book (more on that in 2015!), catch up with family and do what we call "building and setting the scene for the future to come."

As posted many times before, I am a big believer in being grateful for everything we have in our lives.  Keeping a Gratitude Journal has helped me get through rough times, as well to keep my chin up and to look forward to exciting times to come. If it is one thing you do in 2015, (besides making that long awaited booking for a fab vakay to Jamaica!) make sure you purchase for yourself a beautiful journal to record your daily gratitude.  I guaranty it will change your life.

Of recent I have had many opportunties to visit what is fast becoming my second home - Wellington, Florida where my step-dad resides.  it is one of those smaller, genteel and sweet towns that is well known for polo and equestrian events...but I have also fallen in love with the restaurants, shopping and people!  I have been able to make new friends, as well as to renew friendships with friends who I had not seen in many years (Hi Steve and Jer, miss you guys!) - let's just say 2014 gave me insights on what is truly important, and this next year will continue on the same trend.

Negative people, negative thoughts, and non-positive peeps are not really going to be let into my little world from hereon.  I have decided that for myself I am moving forward with some epic changes next year.  Have you ever decided to change your life for the better and realised along the way that there were too many negative forces around you?  Well trust me, once identified, run for the hills!  As a result, I can see how enriched my life has already become.

In terms of fitness and exercise - I intend to post alot more on my journey next year.  A recent setback (I got quite ill with something similar to dengue, caused by a mosquito and have had debilitating joint pain.) As a result, I have been unable to run or weight train for a month and it has been quite depressing, but I feel that in the New Year I will be back on track.  

I recently attended the Jamaica Inn staff party and caught up with an outstanding employee - Teddy, (pictured above with me) - he has been working at the hotel for 56 years this week, and he has known me since I was a teenager - literally watching me grow up. I love this picture as it really captured the essence of Teddy, his spirit and happy personality which is why the repeat guests just love him.  If you are planning a visit to Jamaica Inn soon, make sure you meet Teddy - he makes the best cocktails ever and loves to play croquet with guests.

I am also leaving you with a fantastic cocktail recipe for the Season, a Sorrel Cosmopolitan!  So divine this fab drink is.

And before I sign off until the New Year, I am sending you all best wishes and a BIG thank you for continuing to read this Blog.

Peace, Jeanine

Wednesday, December 3

{Fab Inspiration} The Season and what it means to me!

Hi Friends,

The Christmas Season is well upon us and there is so much to do, and time is flying by so quickly. I am just getting over a nasty bout of the flu but ready to get everything done that needs to be done this month!  Between a planned shopping trip in Florida (which was postponed as I was sick), decorating the house, parties to attend and everything else in between - I feel we can get super caught up in the "things that don't really matter." And by that I mean, it can all get so crazy...looking at TV while sick really made it all resonate so much more with me this year.  I want to concentrate on slowly making it all happen, without the craziness of this time, I want to slow down and focus on what really matters. My husband, my family, close friends, and the real reason we celebrate Christmas, which is to celebrate the birth of Jesus! It seems to have been forgotten along the way. For me, I realise that I need to catch myself.

In the meantime, I think it is fun to be part of a season of fun, and spending time not only with family - but people less fortunate than us who may not be having such a great time. There are so many suffering right now and I am talking about here in my home country of Jamaica. We need to open up our eyes and take it all in, and not become participants of a season gone awry!  For me, it is about the balance of it all.  It takes time to see it, but I am seeing it more and more as each year comes and goes and we enter into crazy time.

My balance is about the fun and hustle as well as sharing. It is also about reporting to you what is happening that is festive and lovely around and about. Some of lovely and unique places and happening's that I am recommending to dine out at, go to the Spa (to chill and take some time for yourself), and to check here is 'part one' of my festive and fun things to do for the season while here in Jamaica this month.  Part two will be published later on this week, and stay tuned for my pick of where to be this New Year's Eve.

Lunch or Dinner at the Exquisite Toscanini in Ocho Rios!
 The beautiful home of Toscanini, an authentic Italian Restaurant just minutes out of Ocho Rios. There is also a fabulous Art Gallery with works of well known Artists from Jamaica and the Caribbean.
The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner daily except Monday's - but offers a fantastic menu with home-made pastas, fresh seafood served up daily and wonderful salads and desserts - not to mention a premium bar and wine list. (Photo credit to Raquel Parke)
Alex, Lella (one of the Owners of Toscanini) and I - we caught up and had a lovely girlfriend's lunch recently - the perfect place to get together with friends!

Treat yourself to a Spa Day & More at Goldeneye

It is a well known fact that I am a HUGE Fan of Island Outpost hotels (having managed one for four years), including the fabulous and chic Goldeneye and have written about these amazing hotels over and over on this Blog.  Just check out my sidebar and you can click on the hotels to see more under the "Find it Fast" tab. As for the Spa at Goldeneye, it is the perfect location for pampering and chilling out in the height of the hustle and bustle of the Season upon us. There are also many amazing Spa Treatments that you can look into for gifts and I have attached that here:

The serene and amazing Field Spa at Goldeneye is my go to place to unwind and chill in the midst of the hustle and bustle of the Season upon us - make your reservations for some of these decadent treatments above!

Attend a Fundraiser this Season

And of course it goes without saying that giving back is so important at this time of year. My fundraiser choice to attend this Season is The Falmouth Heritage Renewal and the Falmouth/Trelawny Chapter of the Georgian Society of Jamaica's second annual Fundraiser to take place right at The Port of Historic Falmouth.  There will be a complimentary trolley tour of Falmouth,and then a cocktail party together with a silent auction and even an Arts and Craft Sale. All for a such a wonderful cause - to preserve, restore and maintain the exquisite Georgian Historic Buildings, monuments and artifacts of the Georgian period (1720-1850) in Jamaica. If you have never taken the Trolley or walking Tour of Falmouth, I highly recommend it -- it is so educational and eye opening.

The Trolley Tour of Historic Falmouth, with the beautifully preserved Anglican Church in the background. You will glean many Georgian buildings on this Tour as well as the Walking Tour of Falmouth.

The Fundraiser will take place this week Saturday, December 6th - hope to see you there, tickets are only $25.00 per person.

Have you ever been to Market on the Lawn?

The dates are now the 7th, 14th and 21st of December - make sure you attend one of the days if you are in Town, I highly recommend it!

If you are looking for a unique and beautiful gift and cannot find anything then make sure you attend one of the Market on the Lawn Fairs at the beautiful Devon House this month.  There are usually three days that the Craft Show is held, and features some of Jamaica's best known craft vendors as well as entertainment, wine tastings and food stalls. Last year I picked up some really lovely purses and sandals that were very popular Christmas gifts, and ended up having lunch at the sweet Bin 26 Wine and Tapas Bar located in Devon House.

I have more to report coming up especially what is happening in Jamaica this New Year, but in the meantime I do hope you all have a more slowed down, happy Season - not overdoing, over-thinking or getting too stressed out. I have to admit that the sight of the all the Christmas trees all over Facebook - so beautiful but so overdone almost.  Just my opinion, but at some point I feel we are missing the true meaning, it is up to us to ensure that our children do not get too caught up in the "Santa" madness, teaching them about the true meaning of Christmas if they are old enough is just so important - let us focus back on that!

Enjoy the Season!

Thursday, November 13

Brunch again at Jamaica Inn in Ocho Rios

Hi Friends,

Just wanted to share with you the news that the chic and award winning Jamaica Inn will be having a fabulous  Champagne Brunch on Sunday, the 16th of November.

I have included some wonderful pictures from past Brunches...this Brunch will have the champagne flowing and the rate includes a Kir Royale or traditional Jamaica Inn Bull Shot. 

The Buffet itself will be decadent with Chef's mouth watering dishes, which include an extensive array of hold and cold delicacies from around the world, a carving station with lamb, an omelette and waffle station (yum!), local faves like ackee and saltfish, roasted breadfruit and salads as well as an assortment of finest deserts from the pastry kitchen.

Live entertainment and an ocean-view complete the magical picture.

Rupert's Classic Jamaica Inn Kir Royal (so amazing for the Holiday Season)

Use a good quality champagne or Prosecco, with crème de cassis.  Start with a quarter glass of the liquor - and then fill the champagne flute almost to the top, and top with another dash of crème de cassis. Cheers!

Thursday, November 6

Popular Recipes (A re-cap)

Hello there friends,

I have decided to give you a synopsis on the popular recipes on this blog that you can click above the picture to take you directly to the recipe - enjoy!

This cream of pumpkin soup recipe is divine, I love this time of year when it is back on the menu at Jamaica Inn.

The jerk chicken pasta posted from Chef Stefan over at Couples has been one of the most popular recipes on the blog with people emailing me for the recipe.

Chef Conroy gave us his yummy poached egg on callaloo recipe, which is also absolutely delightful and if you want to order a plate just like this, be sure to make breakfast reservations over at Hermosa Cove in Ocho Rios.

This yummy escovitch fish and bammy also got raves, recipe here from Chef Maurice.  It is actually so easy to make too!

For the vegetarians, this delectable but simple dish - which can be used for a side or main, of callaloo and veggies is easy to make and yummy.

Not leaving out the vegans, so this delicious chick pea wrap will cover it! Recently shared on the blog.

Stay tuned for the popular cocktails that have been shared on this Blog! 

Wednesday, November 5

{Recipe} A Classic Mojito!

Hi Friends,

Rajay over at the chic Jamaica Inn is sharing his classic "Jamaica Inn Mojito" recipe for you.  There is one subtle change that makes it different to the usual classic mojito, and that is the sugar.  He has used brown sugar in this cocktail.

Ingredients: A light white rum, soda water, fresh mint, sugar (brown used here) and lime juice/ lime for a wedge.  For one drink you will need: 2 ounces of light white rum // a handful of fresh mint // 1/4 cup of soda water // 1/2 ounce of lime juice // 1 tablespoon of brown sugar // lime for a garnish// ice.
Here Rajay muddles the mint with the sugar and lime juice at the bottom of the glass to allow the mint fragrant oils to be released. You can also use simple syrup for a good combo also. Rajay's tip: Pack the ice over the mint leaves after muddling so as not to have the mint leaves floating around the glass. 
Add the soda water to the top half of the glass as Rajay has shown here...mix together -  and you are ready to go, cheers!

For more drink recipes like these check out the Blog at Jamaica Inn, or email me at me here for the ingredients.


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