Search Results for: label/hospitality


About Our Blog

Welcome to Feathers in Our Nest!  I’m Aliesha, wife to Tad, and stay-at-home mother to Vera, Cordelia, and Jude.  This blog shares our family’s story and our journey from newlyweds to a family of five (so far!).  We share milestones, we share struggles, we share sweet memories, and we share about our Savior.  I write almost all of the posts, but Tad will occasionally pop in with a post of his own (and he certainly provides lots of input to the other posts and feedback on new recipes!).

At Feathers in Our Nest, you can expect to find delicious recipes, homemaking tips, practical advice for frugal living, resources for those who are in ministry, inspiring links, and cute photos and stories about our children.  You can browse older posts by checking out the Tips & Tutorials Page or the Recipes Page.


My favorite way to engage with readers is through comments!  I read every single one and I try to answer all your questions!  You can also email me if you have a longer question or want to reach out in another way.  Connect with us on Facebook, and you’ll be updated the moment a new post is published, plus you’ll get fun little bonus “tips” and ideas as well (make sure you add Feathers in Our Nest to your “interests list” so you don’t miss a post).  You can also subscribe to our RSS Feed for daily posting updates.  I post almost daily on Instagram, sharing fun little moments from throughout our day, so even when I’m not blogging, you’ll know what we’re up to.  If you follow me on Pinterest, you can find gift ideas, craft projects, recipes, organization tips, and home decor ideas.  You can also find me writing at She {hearts} It, a product showcasing site, as well as at Baking Whole Grains, a recipe blog.

About Our Family

We have been happily married since October 2009, the fall after we both graduated from Liberty University, Tad with a degree in Philosophy and Religion, and I with a degree in Religion: Women’s Ministry.

We are unashamed followers of Christ, and we boldly share His truth with others whenever we can.  Tad served for four years as a Youth and Children’s Pastor at church in eastern North Carolina, and now he is a computer technician as we wait on God’s direction regarding a future ministry opportunity (we have a heart for church planting).  I am a homemaker and enjoy caring for my sweet (busy!) girlies and precious boy.

We both love to read (and if we weren’t disciplined, we’d spend all our money on books!).  We also love spending time with people, showing hospitality, and playing board/card games together!

We joyfully celebrated the arrival of our first baby, Vera Evangeline, in August 2010.  (You can read her birth story here.)  We were thrilled to welcome our second daughter, Cordelia Mae, into the world in February 2012.   (You can read her birth story here.)  Jude Micah was born in September 2013, and we are excited to have our first boy!  (You can read his birth story here.)  We fully embrace children as a blessing, and we believe that God has a perfect plan for the size of our family!  We look forward to educating our children at home from the moment they are born and training them in the ways of the Lord.

We are so thankful for God’s sovereign grace in our lives, and know that anything we are is because of what He has done in and through us.  We marvel at His faithfulness to our family!

It is our hope that this blog would be a little peek into our lives, and that our testimony would encourage you in your journey as well!

family photo by the talented Andrea Wood

Hospitality Resources

This post is part of my ongoing series on hospitality.

As my hospitality series draws to a close, I wanted to share some of my favorite resources with you if you’re interested in continuing to grow in practicing hospitality!  These are not in a particular order.

Favorite books:
The Art of Hospitality by Yvonne G. Baker (practical, and filled with recipes and menu plans)
Practicing Hospitality by Pat Ennis and Lisa Tatlock (biblical support for hospitality, plus recipes)
A Handbook for Minister’s Wives by Dorothy Kelley Patterson (not all about hospitality, but that’s definitely a big part of the book)
The Christian Homemaker’s Handbook edited by Pat Ennis and Dorothy Kelley Patterson (great book for any Christian woman; includes extensive sections on the home and meal planning)
Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist (nothing will make you want to throw open the doors of your home quite like this book… truly inspirational, plus it includes some of my very favorite recipes)
Homemade Memories by Marita Littauer (about creating family memories in your home, but includes many menu plans that are perfect for hospitality occasions)
The Hospitality Commands by Alexander Strauch (thorough biblical support for WHY to show hospitality)
Open Heart, Open Home by Karen Burton Mains (I haven’t read this one yet, but my mom recommends it)

Favorite blogs/posts:
practical tips for practicing hospitality at Generation Cedar
hospitality posts at Radical Womanhood
hospitality posts at Girl Talk
top 13 ministry meal ideas at Comfy in Kitchen
how to start a weekly meal ministry at your church at Comfy in the Kitchen
creating a hospitality and entertaining notebook at A Plate at My Table
how hospitality helps or hinders relationships at Moms in Need of Mercy
top ten ways to save money on entertaining at The Family CEO Blog
10 budget-friendly dinner party ideas at The Local Cook
how to feel at home in your house and your skin at A Holy Experience

And don’t forget that I will continue to be pinning great ideas for showing hospitality to my Hospitality Pinterest Board!

Do you have any favorite hospitality resources to share?

Hospitality Basics

This post is part of my ongoing series on hospitality.

While you can certainly show hospitality on paper plates (I encourage doing this often!), it actually becomes more cost-effective over time to invest in some great dishes and serving pieces for showing hospitality.  Here are my top picks for the basics!  (I won’t call these essentials because you don’t have to have them in order to practice hospitality… but they are nice to collect over time!)

To start with, buy enough to serve as many people as your dining room will hold.  (Work up to this over time if money is tight.)  For me, this is sixteen.  Sixteen people in my dining room is totally pushing it, but we’ve done it twice (once for a ladies Bible study dinner and once for a youth Christmas party).  I recommend and use white Corelle dishes.  I bought most of mine at an outlet store before we got married and the rest were a gift.  I have two patterns (plain white and white with a raised swirl design), and no one cares that they aren’t a perfect match (I actually like the look!).

Buy enough to serve as many people as your dining room will hold.  We received lovely flatware as a wedding present, and it is one of our most-used gifts!

Buy enough to serve as many people as your dining room will hold.  I’m still working on getting up to sixteen matching glasses, but I have twelve that match plus another similar set I could use in a pinch.  I like the $4.79/6 red wine glasses from IKEA.  They are lovely for serving ice water and they are SO cheap that if one breaks it’s just no big deal.

-Bread basket
Useful for chips, bread, rolls, or buns, this can be as simple as a basket from the dollar store lined with a napkin, or it can be something fancier (handmade basket, fabric liner, etc.).  I just use a simple basket lined with a colorful paper napkin.

-Serving platters
I’ve been collecting white serving platters so that I would have the appropriate sized plate/platter to serve food on.  I love getting serving pieces as gifts, so I’ve acquired some that way as well.

-Serving dishes
I was blessed to receive a whole bunch of beautiful white serving/casserole dishes when we got married, so I definitely put those to work on a regular basis!  Dishes with handles are great for serving meals family-style.

-Water pitcher
I like to leave the water pitcher on the table so that refills are easy.  I have several beautiful pitchers that are appropriate for almost any gathering.  I also have some plastic pitchers for more casual gatherings.

-Cloth or paper napkins
We use cloth napkins all the time at home, so I often use those when we have company too.  But because some people aren’t used to using cloth napkins (and it causes parents of kids to stress out a little bit), I often use cute paper napkins too.  This is a fun way to add some color or seasonal inspiration to your table!

I use swirly “wrought-iron” trivets and green woven trivets to keep hot dishes off the table.  The woven trivets are useful for passing dishes as well, since they can act as a potholder.

Depending on your “style,” tablecloths can be a nice addition to your hospitality collection.  I have a really
long table, so it’s a little harder to find tablecloths that are long enough.  I have a few in neutral colors that I use regularly (the white one is my favorite), but I don’t always use a tablecloth.

-Decorative items
I like to have a pretty centerpiece on the table that is appropriate for the season and the occasion.  I usually just utilize items I have on hand (candles, vases, a pretty cloth napkin, etc.).  Sometimes I can afford to get some fresh flowers for the table.  Of course, if you garden, you can use flowers more often than I can!  In the fall I will use a pumpkin and some beautiful leaves.  I like to bring in holly or evergreen branches in the wintertime.  Get creative using what you have, but also watch for clearance sales after holidays when you can pick up pretty seasonal items on the cheap.

Here are a few of my favorite places to shop for the above items:
-IKEA (glasses, paper napkins, candles, vases)
-Ross (serving platters and dishes, tablecloths, decorative items)
-T.J. Maxx (baskets, serving platters and dishes, decorative items)
-Marshall’s (serving platters and dishes, decorative items)
-Home Goods (paper napkins, baskets, serving platters and dishes, pitchers, decorative items)
-Target (silverware, cloth napkins, serving dishes, pitchers, decorative items)
-Dollar Tree (baskets, woven trivets, some seasonal decorative items)

Where are your favorite places to shop for these hospitality basics?