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How do you ring in the new year in Seattle? Like this:

Siiri Sampson in Seattle for New Years 2014

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

In full sequins, knee high Timberland boots, and a fur trapper hat in the middle of 6th Avenue while the fireworks go off the Space Needle behind you (it was foggy, but that’s what the pink lights are behind me). What you’re not seeing here is our glasses of champagne sitting on the sidewalk, and the crazy crowd of people that had the same idea, who are behind the camera. By far, one of my BEST New Years to date.

Oven roasted grape tomatoes by Siiri Sampson

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

The evening started off with roasting grape tomatoes in the oven for homemade pizza. And in true Sampson fashion, I made sure I set off the smoke alarm one last time before the stroke of midnight.

Homemade margarita pizza by Siiri Sampson

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

Then I pan roasted thick slices of zucchini (but was too hungry to bother taking a picture by the time everything was ready to eat).

Homemade Margarita pizza by Siiri Sampson

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

Once dinner was devoured it was time to walk around the neighborhood, enjoy a glass of champagne at a local watering hole or three (Clever Bottle, Rob Roy, TanakaSan)

Pink champagne at TanakaSan

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

And then back home with time to spare before the clock struck 12 and the fireworks climbed the stem of the Space Needle…

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

Pre-ball drop excitement!

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

With my buddy, Liz, equally clad in pearls and sequins – toasting to a New Year and a killer brunch to come in the morning….

Black Eyed Peas and Collard Greens

Copyright 2014 Siiri Sampson. All rights reserved.

A slow cooker recipe Liz found in Southern Living (Sans ham this time) for black eyed peas and collard greens. A classic New Years Day dish thought for ages to bring good luck and prosperity. And what do you drink along with this to celebrate making it through New Years Eve without losing your keys, your phone, your friends, your clothes or your dinner? If you know what’s good for you, make a Florida Citrus-Peach Mint Julep! I just got this rad, spiral bound cookbook (which totally takes me back, I love things that are spiral bound!) from the Florida Department of Citrus.

Florida Citrus-Peach Mint Julep

Source: floridajuice.com

I love a mint julep, but this one goes beyond and gets extra credit points for having three kinds of citrus juice, a nice healthy kick for the AM portion of Day 1!  They also have a recipe in the cookbook for Orange-jalapeño Corn Bread, which I’m dying to make in my cast iron skillet and have with a hearty batch of my white chili in the next week or two. But guess what?!?!? The Florida Department of Citrus wants to help all of us be awesome (including my blog) in 2014, so they’re letting me give away 5 more of the cookbooks to you all! SWEET! (get it? oranges? sweet? anybody???)

If you want to be a winner, just go check out the Florida Citrus website and leave a comment below this post letting me know which recipe you’d like to see me make on the blog. Then I’ll randomly draw 5 winners! I will also make one of the recipes for the blog, and I’ll even do a VLOG (are we using that term still??? It means video blog if you don’t know it…) of me making the dish!

So that’s it! You’ve got a whole week to enter the giveaway and of course, share your stories with me about how you rang in the new year!

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