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  • Game Day Snacks: Walker’s Dip

    Oct 27, 2015 CATEGORIES: AL, Alabama, Alabama SEC Football, Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, Oh My!, Recipes, SEC Football, Southern Tailgating

    In 2012 I was on my first book tour and was scheduled for my first appearance in Andalusia, AL at a little place called Walker’s Business Machines.  Why I had agreed to promote the book at a business machine store was beyond me but I was young, and green, and any chance to showcase the book, I took!  Upon arrival, I was greeted by the type of people who are so sweet they give you diabetes. The red carpet was rolled out, the store promotions had been done, and the owner and staff all found time to visit with me in between signings.  Did I mention that “business machines” really meant beautiful office furniture on one side of the store and adorable home decor and game day gifts on the other?  

    Also at my signing table was an addicting dip that I’ll admit that I ate more of than the visitors. Whoops!  Which meant I couldn’t leave the signing without the recipe so Suzanne Williams wrote it down for me. (Handwritten recipes are always my favorite).

    Below are all of the instructions for Walker’s Dip.  It’s simple. It’s quick. It’s a crowd pleaser that disappears before half time. 

    Thank you, again, Walker’s and Ms. Suzanne Williams.  I’ve never forgotten about my second home in Andalusia!

    Xs and Os,

    Christie Leigh

    Ingredients:

    1   16oz Sour Cream

    2   Packs Ranch Dressing mix

    1   Package of Hormel Bacon Bits (Must be Hormel)

    1    Package of shredded sharp cheddar cheese (or two heaping handfuls)

    1 Sprinkle of red pepper flakes to spice it up!

    Directions:  Combine sour cream, bacon bits, cheddar cheese in bowl.  Once mixed, add ranch dressing. Mix again.  Serve with Freetos or a hearty chip/cracker of your choice.

     

     

  • Pumpkin (Muffins) Mandatory, Footballs Optional

    Oct 14, 2015 CATEGORIES: Food, Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, SEC Football, Southern Tailgating, Tailgating

    For tailgates and watch parties, I prefer bit-size everything. It’s easier for the grab-and-gab tendencies of tailgaters and serious fans alike.

    Because it isn’t fall (or September or October) without pumpkin everything, here is a semi-healthy pumpkin treat for your next game day dish.

    Pumpkin Muffins (Footballs Optional)

    3/4 Cups of granulated sugar

    2 cups of all purpose flour

    2 teaspoons baking powder

    2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

    1 teaspoon salt

    1 teaspoon baking soda

    1 cup vegetable oil

    4 eggs

    1 29 oz can pumpkin (or two smaller 16 oz cans)

    1 jar of Pillsbury Cream Cheese icing

     

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all liquids (pumpkin, eggs, oil and sugar) in large bowl, using an electric mixer until smooth and airy.  In a separate bowl, combine the remaining dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, salt, baking soda, cinnamon).  Fold in dry ingredients and then use electric mixer to combine all ingredients until batter is smooth. 

    Spray muffin pan with non-stick spray (or if you’re using muffin papers, spray those as well).  Fill each section 3/4 full of mix. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. (Keep an eye on these and set a timer!)

    Apply Pillsbury cream cheese icing liberally once muffins are cool.  Place pre-bought football shapes on top of iced muffins for game day festivities.

    For a heartier muffin, add one cup of chopped walnuts and or half cup of raisins.

  • RECIPE: Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Sandwiches. YUM.

    Aug 17, 2015 CATEGORIES: Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, Oh My!, Recipes, SEC Football, Southern Tailgating, Tailgating


    At its core, tailgating in the SEC is equal parts food, friends and football. Of course you can always show up right before kickoff without food or friends, but we don’t recommend it!

    Because the food is one of the best parts before the football, we are already getting our game day recipes together so that our in-season grocery shopping and menu planning is as easy as beating a PAC-10 team. Keep an eye out for Gridiron Belle recipes on Mondays and don’t forget to send in your favorite recipes to be shared!

    Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Sandwiches

    By Molly Carter of Duchess of Fork as found on www.DuchessofFork.com

    Originally found in Vie Magazine

    ….ever so slightly tweaked by the Gridiron Belles kitchen

    INGREDIENTS:                                                                                               Gridiron Belles INGREDIENTS:

    100 tiny twist pretzels                                                                                        150 tiny twist pretzels

    1 cup creamy peanut butter                                                                               2 cups creamy peanut butter

    ¾ cup brown sugar                                                                                            1 cup brown sugar           

    ¾ cup powdered sugar                                                                                      1 cup powdered sugar

    1 box semi-sweet baking chocolate                                                               2 (12oz) bags semi-sweet chocolate chips

    DIRECTIONS:

    Mix peanut butter, brown sugar, and powdered sugar with an electric mixer until ingredients are well combined.  Sandwich a heaping teaspoon of peanut butter filling between two pretzels.  Store sandwiches in the fridge for an hour or two.  Melt semisweet chocolate according to package directions.  Dip sandwiches into melted chocolate, covering only half of the sandwich. Place sandwiches on wax paper and store in fridge until chocolate hardens and you’re ready to eat. Makes 50 sandwiches—but you’ll need more!  So Gridiron Belles made 75 using the list on the right.

    Best if served cold and freezes well. We recommend making a large batch early in the season and freezing until you need more!

    You’ll be lucky if you have this many left!

  • Belles In Biz: Meet the Belle Behind PIZZAZZERIE!

    Aug 14, 2015 CATEGORIES: Belles in Biz, Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, SEC Football, Southern Tailgating, Vanderbilt



    If you’ve been wondering who is the brains–and the beauty— behind the awe-inspiring entertaining blog, Pizzazzerie, look no further! We are honored to feature Ms. Courtney Whitmore in Belles in Biz as the epitome  of a creative, ambitious, dedicated and oh-so-talented Belle who has been inspiring pizzazz for all occasions for over six years.  We already love her–and get LOTS of ideas from her website– and we know you will too.  Please, allow us to introduce and welcome, Ms. Courtney Whitmore.

    Name: Courtney Whitmore

    Team: Vanderbilt University

    Graduated from: Vanderbilt University

    Name of Your Biz: Pizzazzerie

    Explanation of Your Biz: I’m a food and entertaining blogger, cookbook author, and I style and create recipes and party ideas for brands!

    How did you get your start? After throwing lots of dinner parties for friends, I launched a blog to share photos from the parties. A few months later, I was lucky enough to land a book deal and get noticed by Tori Spelling as well as several local news channels. From there, I left my job and gave Pizzazzerie.com my full-time focus! And I’ve never looked back!

    So tell us, what exactly is your role? I’m in my 6th year with Pizzazzerie. My role is pretty much everything. I’m creating blog posts, styling and photographic shoots, prop shopping, working with clients, social media, and everything in between. There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes to running a site and styling.

    Most challenging/rewarding part of your biz? The most challenging part of the biz is the ongoing momentum. It never ceases. There is always a holiday around the corner or more ideas to be styled. There aren’t very many lulls so it can get overwhelming. The most rewarding is seeing my creations up on the site for everyone to see. I love to get an idea, style it, photograph it, and then hit that publish button! I get such a thrill when I share ideas with readers!

    What is one thing your biz would not survive without? My laptop! It goes with me everywhere I go!

    What’s next? That’s a great question! This is such a fast moving industry that it’s hard to know exactly where it will go but I’d like to do another book at some point (maybe a children’s book) and continue to style for brands that I love and admire!

    Work-life balance, fact or fiction? Fiction, I love my job too much!

    Business advice to other Belles? For your own business to be wildly successful, you better eat, sleep, and breathe it! If you would choose that work over taking a nap or shopping at the mall, then you’re on the right track! You have to love it and have a huge passion for it because it’s a lot of work!

    Favorite part about being a Commodores fan? I love my alma mater! We’re a small but mighty group and my favorite part is our location (right here in Nashville, TN) and our colors (black and gold)!

    Favorite tailgate dish? Mini burgers!

    Game day drink of choice? Tailgate punch (a beer based punch).

    What do you always have in your touch down purse? My phone – so I can share pics on social media!

    Coach Crush? Kliff Kingsbury

    Heads or Tails? Heads

    Who wins it all this year? Auburn! 

    Don’t miss out on any of Pizzazzerie’s latest and greatest– follow here!

    Website, Facebook, Instagram, Pintrest, Twitter

     

  • We’re baaaackkk!

    Aug 2, 2015 CATEGORIES: Belles in Biz, Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, Oh My!, SEC, SEC Football, Serious Football, Southern Belles, Southern Tailgating, Southern Women

    What an off-season!
     
    It’s been a tremendously action packed off-season full of travels, Triple Crown winners, coaches-musical-chairs, coordinator hires, and SEC-themed weddings. Alas, it’s time to re-submerge ourselves into the glory of the fall and the highly anticipated SEC football season.
     
    This year brings new things to Gridiron Belles and we couldn’t be more excited.  What you can expect on the blog this season:


    MONDAYS: Outfits, Recipes and Tailgates, Oh My!
     
    You can never plan your outfit or tailgate menu too early.  Mondays will give you ideas of outfit suggestions, our favorite recipes, interesting SEC sightings or recent photos of Gridiron Belles tailgating around the SEC. This gives you all week to wrangle what you need and to be inspired by what’s going on around you. 
     
    If you have a favorite game day recipe you want to share, by all means, send it in and we’ll test it out!

    WEDNESDAYS: Serious Football.  
     
    We’ll post the weekend’s match-ups, schedules and why in the world it’s important for you to watch, or not watch, the gridiron grit that weekend. 

    FRIDAYS: Belles in Biz.  
     
    We know that there is more to us Belles than being great on Saturdays. We are smart, motivated, talented and successful in a million ways outside of tailgating and being able to call plays for coaches.  Here at Gridiron Belles, we celebrate strong women and want to highlight the Gridiron Belles in Business around the south.  
     
    If you, or someone you know has started their own company, has made a difference in the community, or is otherwise pretty awesome, we want to hear about her!  Drop us a line about her and we’ll feature her success story.
     
    Note, you want to pay attention to Fridays, because sometimes these are going to be accompanied by product giveaways! See instructions on how to win on each individual post.

    As always, keep up with our whereabouts and going ons via Instagram: @GridironBelles, Twitter: @GridironBelles and Facebook:  Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie.
     
    We always look forward to hearing from you so don’t be a stranger, you hear?!
     
    Xs and Os,
     
    Christie Leigh
     
     
  • Game Time(s) Week 11

    Nov 7, 2014 CATEGORIES: Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, LSU Football, Nick Saban, SEC Football, Southern Tailgating, Tailgating

    They don’t call it the Bible Belt for nothing! Ole Miss is getting it’s rest on Saturday while they play Presbyterian at noon—don’t change your plans for this one.  Our adoration for the DAWGS and Coach Richt (what a gent!) has to take a back seat to pulling for the home team. Georgia lines up against Kentucky at noon which will potentially give Stoops’ Troops a chance to regain momentum from early in the season all the while giving the DAWGS a “can’t lose” battle.

    The Aggies head to the plains in an attempt to rattle the No. 3 Tiger’s cage.  In typical Auburn fashion, they will likely use every minute of the clock to pull off the win. Auburn fans get the faith and Aggie fans don’t start “gigging” too soon… this will be a surprisingly long game.

    The number one team in the country, Mississippi State (I still can’t believe I get to write that sentence), will put in their 3rd string against Tennessee Martin at 4pm on Saturday. A great move to rest up before the Starkville Bulldogs make the trek to Tuscaloosa next week.

    Florida at Vanderbilt may be the highlight of the season in Nashville.  With the Gators not exactly brimming with confidence and skills and Vandy looking for a win, this might actually be a good game. Might.

    The game we’ve all been waiting for has the 8pm prime time spot.  Every year this game has more on the line.  Despite LSU’s 16th spot in the rankings, expect a battle for the history books.  LSU has home field advantage, but don’t forget Saban knows how to play in Tiger Stadium as well.   For some statistical talking points, here is what Edward Aschoff from ESPN wrote.

    “Since 2007, this annual game has been decided by seven points or fewer five times, with LSU winning three of those games. Four times since 2007 the winner has worn the SEC crown. They’ve met as top-10 teams five times in that span and twice have been ranked No. 1 and No. 2. The winner played in the BCS title game four times, going 3-1, with the only loss coming at the conclusion of the 2011 season when Alabama beat LSU 21-0 in the BCS National Championship after losing “Armageddon” 9-6 at home earlier in the season.”

    Happy Game Day eve, Belles!

    Xs and Os,

    Christie Leigh

    PS- Don’t forget to send in your tailgating photos!  info@gridironbelles.com

     

    12:00pm               Presbyterian @ Ole Miss (No. 11)

                                       Georgia (No. 20) @ Kentucky

    3:30pm                 Texas A&M @ Auburn (No. 3)

    4:00pm                 Tennessee Martin @ Mississippi State (No.1)

    7:30pm                  Florida @ Vanderbilt

    8:00pm                 Alabama (No. 5) @ LSU (No.16)

    Bye Weeks


    South Carolina

    Tennessee

    Missouri

    Arkansas

  • It’s Game Time

    Aug 28, 2014 CATEGORIES: Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, SEC Football, Southern Football, Southern Tailgating

    Game week is here and your Thursday/Saturday schedule should follow accordingly…

    If you want to watch other conferences, you’ll have to go elsewhere for information. Below are all of the times for our beloved SEC kickoffs.  So wake up early for your workout, get ready while watching Game Day, make a tailgate snack and get comfy for a full day of gridiron glory.  It’s baaaaackkkk!

    Xs and Os,

    Christie Leigh

    Thursday, August 28:

    6:00pm ET            Texas A&M (No.21) at South Carolina (No.9)

    8:00pm ET            Boise State v. Ole Miss (No. 18)

    9:15pm ET            Temple @ Vanderbilt

     

    Saturday, August 30:

    12:00pm ET            Tennessee-Martin @ Kentucky

    3:30pm ET            West Virginia v. Alabama (No.2)

    3:30pm ET            South Dakota State @ Missouri (No.24)

    4:00pm ET            Arkansas @ Auburn (No.6)

    5:30pm ET            Clemson (No. 16) @ Georgia (No. 12)

    7:00pm ET            Idaho @Florida

    7:30pm ET            Southern Miss @ Mississippi State

    9:00pm ET            Wisconsin (No. 14) v. LSU (No.13)

     

    Sunday, August 31:

    7:00pm ET            Utah State @ Tennessee

  • QB CRAM

    Aug 15, 2014 CATEGORIES: Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, SEC Football, Southern Tailgating, Uncategorized

     QB CRAM

    It’s time.  You aren’t even sad to say farewell to summer. You know kickoff is less than two weeks away (13 days to be exact) and you’ve got nothing but your team’s colors on your mind. And well, probably on your body.  (I’m currently in a navy dress with orange sandals…)  

    Not our photo, but we’re ready for the line of scrimmage!

    Since Gridiron Belles prefer brains (knowing about your team and conference) AND beauty (looking classy on game day), we’ve given you the ol’ QB Cram below. 

    Here are the basics about each team in the SEC: current coaches, potential starting QBs, season opener times and SEC openers. We’ll keep prepping you as the season unfolds, for now, dive in, study up and clear your schedule for August 30! (QBs and game time subject to change).

    Xs and Os,

    Christie Leigh

    Mizzou made a quick adjustment into the SEC. Ready to see them succeed again!

    Alabama

    Coach: Nick Saban

    QB: Jake Coker (JR)

    Season Opener: Saturday, August 30, West Virginia in Atlanta

    SEC Opener: Saturday, September 20, Florida

    Arkansas

    Coach: Bret Bielema

    QB: Brandon Allen (JR)

    Season Opener: @ Auburn

    Date: Saturday, August 30, 4:00pm

    Auburn

    Coach: Gus Malzahn

    QB: Nick Marshall (SR)

    Season Opener: Arkansas

    Date: Saturday, August 30, 4pm

    Florida

    Coach: Will Muschamp

    QB: Jeff Driskel (RJR)

    Season Opener: Idaho

    Date: Saturday, August 30, 7:00pm

    SEC Opener: Kentucky

    Date: September 13, 7:30pm

    Georgia

    Coach: Mark Richt

    QB: Hutson Mason (SR)

    Season Opener: Clemson

    Date: Saturday, August 30 5:30pm

    SEC Opener: South Carolina

    Date: September 13, 3:30pm

    Kentucky

    Coach: Mark Stoops

    QB: Patrick Towels (SO) or Drew Barker (FR)

    Season Opener: UT Martin

    Date: Saturday, August 30 12:00 pm

    SEC Opener: @ Florida

    Date: September 13

    LSU

    Coach: Les Miles

    QB: Anthony Jennings (SO) or Brandon Harris (True Freshman)

    Season Opener: Wisconsin

    Date: Saturday, August 30, 9:00pm

    SEC Opener: Mississippi State

    Date: September 20

    Mississippi

    Coach: Hugh Freeze

    QB: Bo Wallace (SR)

    Season Opener: Boise State

    Date: Satruday, August 30, 8:00pm

    SEC Opener: @Vanderbilt

    Date: September 6, 4:30pm

    Mississippi State

    Coach: Dan Mullen

    QB: Dak Prescott (JR)

    Season Opener: Southern Miss

    Date: Satruday, August 30, 7:30pm

    SEC Opener: @ LSU

    Date: September 20

    Missouri

    Coach: Gary Pinkle

    QB: Maty Mauk (Jr.)

    Season Opener: South Dakota State

    Date: Saturday, August 30

    SEC Opener: @South Carolina

    Date: September 27

    South Carolina

    Coach: Steve Spurrier

    QB: Dylan Thompson (5th year senior)

    Season Opener: TX A&M

    Date: Thursday, August 28, 6:00pm

    Tennessee

    Coach: Butch Jones

    QB: Justin Worley (SR)

    Season Opener: Utah State

    Date: Sunday, August 31, 7:00pm

    SEC Opener: @Georgia

    Date: September 27

    Texas A&M

    Coach: Kevin Sumlin

    QB: Kyle Allen (FR) or Kenny Hill (SO)

    Season Opener: @South Carolina

    Date: Thursday, August 28, 6:00pm

    Vanderbilt

    Coach: Derek Mason

    QB: Stephen Rivers (SR) or Johnny McCrary (FR)

    Season Opener: Temple

    Date: Thursday, August 28, 9:15pm

    SEC Opener: Ole Miss

    Date: September 6, 4:30pm

  • Cocktails (and Football) At The Beach

    Oct 30, 2013 CATEGORIES: Georgia Football, Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, SEC Football, Southern Tailgating, Tailgating, UGA

    While the rest of us may be battling dropping temperatures, inclement weather and an over all struggle to stay warm and presentable for all of game day, the lucky Georgia and Florida fans are heading to the beach for a cocktail party.  

    If we can’t go with them, we’ll just put together some gridiron-beach-chic outfits for them to use while soaking up the sun and beverages at St. Simon’s before kick-off. After all, you can’t wear just anything to the world’s largest outdoor cocktail party.

    Don’t forget the sunscreen!

    Xs and Os,

    Christie Leigh

     

     

  • The (Wardrobe) Battle of the Columbias

    Oct 24, 2013 CATEGORIES: Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie, SEC Football, Southern Belles, Southern Tailgating

    If you’re heading to COMO (“Columbia, MO” the nickname for the newest Columbia of the SEC) for the game this weekend, you’re going to need to bundle up.  But, that doesn’t mean you don’t need to dress up.

    Spurrier and his Gamecocks are making the cross-country trip to visit Coach Pinkle and his undefeated Tigers. Trust us,  you don’t want to miss a play. And you certainly don’t want to be inappropriately dressed so use these outfits as some spirited guidelines.

    Don’t forget to Tweet us your game day wardrobes wherever you’re watching the game.

    Happy Game Day!

    Xs and Os,

    Christie Leigh

     

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