Friday, June 28, 2013

So Good, You'll Be Begging for S'More!

Admit it. You loved them as a child, and never outgrew the gooey, sweet taste. Whether melting them over a campsite bonfire or preparing them on your grill at home, S'mores still melt your heart (and taste buds). And while the classic graham cracker-marshmallow-chocolate concoction is nearly impossible to beat, there are delicious variations that are definitely worth trying. 
These s'more recipes are a perfect treat for any Fourth of July celebration. The kids will love them, and you will too!
The Elvis: Graham crackers, peanut butter cup, marshmallow, and a banana slice (and if you're truly a die-hard fan of The King, add some bacon!)
Grasshopper: Graham crackers, Andes mints, and marshmallow
Turtle: The original s'more with caramel and chopped pecans 
Oreo: Chocolate graham crackers, marshmallow, white chocolate, and Oreo crumbles
Fruit Burst: Add fruits to the classic -- strawberries, blueberries, cherries, etc.
Mexican: Graham crackers, marshmallows, milk chocolate, cinnamon, and nutmeg
Caribbean: Graham crackers, marshmallow, caramel, and coconut
PB&J: Graham crackers, marshmallow, peanut butter, and jelly
Burst of Color: Add rainbow sprinkles to the classic s'more
Banana Split: Graham crackers, marshmallow, chocolate, strawberries, bananas, and nuts
Have you ever tried any of these recipes? Have you any other s'more recipes to share?
From your friends at Parrish & Company, have a safe and happy Independence Day!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

10 Steps for the Perfect Outdoor Room

American society has changed over the past few years as consumer spending habits have shifted to accommodate economic ups and downs. There has been a shift to more home-based activities, and many homeowners are opting to expand or remodel as a result. 

In place of a vacation, it’s possible to create an exterior living space with amenities like a patio, all-weather furniture, outdoor lighting, fireplaces, and outdoor kitchens. This allows for long-lasting enjoyment in the comfort of home, and increases the utility and value of the property.

Good design is the key to creating an outdoor room. By embracing the following steps, you will be on the way to attaining the yard of your dreams. 

1. Determine the purpose of the room.
Step one in the design process is to create a list of needs and wants for all residents, then prioritize. How will it be used most? As an outdoor kitchen, a cozy nook for two, an al fresco dining room, a gathering place for friends and family, a quiet place to read and write, or an entertainment center? 

2. See it as a room.
Don’t set limits while envisioning a room without walls – consider any option and think big. Some people have difficulty seeing how a room without walls can be decorated, but as soon as they picture a pergola or outdoor structure, it’s easier to define the space. 

3. Create a Landscape Plan.
Make efficient use of space and time by working with a designer or landscape architect who will analyze the site, provide solutions and develop a scaled plan that includes the desired elements. Besides offering valuable building and layout ideas, a professional will be able to provide a rough estimate on project costs.

4. Prepare a Timeline and Stick to the Budget.
Be sure that a savings plan and budget are in place to cover the cost for new items, renovations, and professional services. Determine which parts of the project can be done in phases to meet budgeting needs. With a structured plan, it is much easier to work in phases and not end up with a  mismatched or unfinished final result.

5. Take Inventory. 
There may be salvageable items for use that are currently available in a garage or storage space. What needs to be replaced or refurbished? Consider each component for the outdoor space in this inventory.

6. Do Your Homework. 
For some landscape projects and outdoor rooms, a city permit may be needed. Also consider any work such as pavement, gas lines, or installation that may need to be done by contract workers. Be sure you know the lay of the land – some items may need a flat surface. Also consider the climate, the direction of the sun, shading, noise and privacy factors.

7. Save Time and Money. 
Find local talent to help with set up, assembly and manual labor – especially the heavy lifting. Ask around to get recommendations for experienced, reliable workers. It may take time up front, but will save you time and effort in the long run. Another idea to consider is DIY (Do It Yourself) options. Everyone wants to save a buck, and while working on various phases, there may be elements homeowners can manage themselves. 

8. Entertain Outdoors.
Kitchens are the heart of the home indoors, and they are becoming an equally essential element outside of the home. Grilling islands now offer everything from storage space to refrigeration, sinks, even outdoor TV’s. Remember to check restrictions or codes related to use of open flames or any requirements for natural gas lines.

9. Light up the Night and Turn on the Heat.
People are naturally attracted to flame. Think of fire either as an anchor or centerpiece for the room. Setting a fire pit in the middle of the space creates a cozy focal point, while a fireplace just outside the perimeter brings natural warmth to the whole room. Lanterns, solar lights, infrared heaters, or hanging lights add ambience and a glow to the whole yard.

10. Pay Attention to Design and Detail.
Strategically placed plants and accessories add the finishing touches to an outdoor room. Now it’s all about aesthetics: hanging plants, outdoor rugs, art, lawn games, potted plants, candles, etc. Pull in colors and textures from the home architecture to create a seamless transition from indoors to out. 

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

No More Waiting for Water to Boil

Parrish & Company is excited to introduce yet another new product in our showrooms this Spring: the GE Cafe Series French Door Refrigerator with Hot Water Dispenser. In addition to chilled water, cubes, and crushed ice, this door dispenser allows you to pour hot, filtered water in minutes. With four preprogrammed settings for the most common food and drinks, hot water is available at a perfectly accurate temperature every time you need it. 

Simply select your temperature setting or customize the temperature you need, then use the knob to dispense up to 10 ounces of perfectly heated water. Water is purified through the only refrigeration filter tested and verified to remove 98 percent of five trace pharmaceuticals from water and ice, offering added peace of mind for you and your family. Plus, the ENERGY STAR rating means that both models of this refrigerator cost only $60 each per year to operate, on average.

Turn up the heat on convenience in your kitchen, and check out this cool (and hot!) new refrigerator from GE. Visit any Parrish showroom to see this do-it-all dispenser for yourself. 

Need a reputable local resource for help and ideas on an upcoming home project? 

Many homeowners go to for inspiration on renovations. Parrish & Company aims to be that go-to resource for San Antonio, Austin, and the surrounding areas. With your review and rating, we will be able to help others as we hopefully have helped you. Please visit our Houzz profile page,, and click on "Review Me." Your experience with Parrish & Company may help others, so thank you in advance!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Exciting New Products to Enhance Your Home

With the annual emergence of exciting new products from our vendors, Spring is always a fun time of year around Parrish & Company. Each manufacturer produces and introduces its latest and greatest products, which we love showing off to customers. Here are some of our favorites, which we hope to see going into your beautiful homes in 2013:

Slate appliances from GE. GE’s new fashion-forward finish, Slate, is just as stylish and sophisticated as stainless steel but with a stunning, earthy tone. The Slate line includes refrigerators, electric and gas ranges, microwave ovens, and dishwashers, all with brushed metal touch points. This unique color blends beautifully with other stainless, black, or white appliances, or truly stands out when used by itself. Visit to see a palette of complementary finishes and to learn more about a rebate offer that’s valid through April 24.

New and improved electric fireplaces. Every home deserves to have at least one fireplace, and if cost or installation is an issue, the electric fireplace can save the day. The newest electrics from Heatilator's SimpliFire line incorporate LED lighting for unmatched visual effects, including realistic flames and perimeter lights. They also provide 100% efficient heat for your enjoyment, and can be used most anywhere in your home. Wall-mount and built-in models can create any look you 
desire, from contemporary to traditional, and the average cost to operate using both heat and flame is 10 cents or less per hour. For more information: (Available Summer, 2013)

Customized outdoor spaces. Don't forget about Parrish & Company when it comes to your outdoor kitchens and living rooms. Our design experts can help you select the perfect fireplace, grill, and accessories to WOW! your family and friends and create a relaxing retreat when guests have gone home. To learn more about outdoor fireplace options, visit or stop by your nearest Parrish & Company showroom today!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Beauty of Stained Wood Without the Upkeep

High-maintenance homes are a thing of the past, and energy-efficient products that once were considered futuristic are now the norm. One thing, however, has remained the same throughout time: homeowners’ appreciation for the traditional beauty of wood.

If updating your home is at the top of your to-do list this spring, consider installing a new Clopay Ultra-Grain garage door. It delivers the best of both worlds, with the realism of natural wood and the low-maintenance and energy-efficient benefits of insulated steel.

Unlike real wood, however, it’s UV-resistant and impervious to moisture, so it won’t fade, rot, split, shrink or crack, saving you and the environment material, energy and resources necessary to maintain or replace door components.

Other benefits include:

* The painted steel surface simulates a real stained door without the hassles of staining and the ongoing maintenance of wood.

* The wood grain runs horizontal on stiles and vertical on panels for an authentic, natural look.
* Doors are available in Medium, Dark and Walnut finishes that complement entry doors and other exterior stained wood products.

* Doors are available in 8 3-layer models to meet a wide range of style preferences.

* The exterior surface has a stucco texture for a more natural wood grain look vs. a wood grain texture that runs in one direction.

* The qualified Gallery Collection doors are available in specific WINDCODE ratings.

* Window frames, grilles and inserts will be color matched to coordinate with each oak pattern. All window options are available.

For more information about Clopay garage doors, visit your nearest Parrish showroom soon.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Spring Is Here, So Let's Get Cooking!

Spring has sprung, and the season for outdoor entertaining has begun! If your deck or patio needs a simple update or complete overhaul, let Parrish & Company help you create a functional and fun outdoor oasis complete with BBQ grill and accessories, refrigerator, fireplace, and much more.  

One of our favorite cooking products is The Big Green Egg - the original ceramic cooker that can be used as a grill, smoker, or oven. The versatility of this product is legendary, and its many capabilities make creating delicious dinners a breeze. 

Check out the easy recipe below for Southwest Turkey Burgers, and come see us at Parrish & Company the next time you're hungry for a new outdoor retreat.

Southwest Turkey Burgers

(makes 4 burgers)

1 pound ground turkey breast
1/3 cup salsa
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 small ripe avocado, mashed
1 tablespoon reduced-fat sour cream
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon lime juice
Whole-wheat sandwich rolls, or your choice of buns
Lettuce leaves
Tomato slices

1. Set the EGG for direct cooking at 450ºF/232ºC.
2. Combine turkey, salsa, green onions, oregano, cumin and salt in large bowl. Shape into four patties.
3. Place patties on grid and grill 4 to 5 minutes per side or until burgers are cooked through.
4. Meanwhile, combine avocado, sour cream, cilantro and lime juice in medium bowl. Season with salt and set aside. 

5. Place lettuce on each roll or bun bottom. Top with burger, tomato slice and avocado mixture.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Induction Cooktops: The Hottest Thing in Cooking Technology

Homeowners — especially those who cook — are always looking for ways to save time and money in the kitchen, and induction cooktops accomplish just that. Cooks who are new to induction technology will realize its benefits immediately: faster, more responsive heating; safer, more energy-efficient cooking; and easier cleanup. 

Some Details:

1. Induction cooktops use electromagnetic energy to instantly and directly supply heat to your cookware. Imagine boiling water in just 90 seconds! Pasta is ready in less than half the time, which means more opportunity for spending quality time with your family and friends.

2. Induction technology only heats the cooktop surface that comes into contact with cookware, so the temperature in your kitchen doesn’t escalate.

3. Cooking with induction is 70% more energy-efficient than gas and 20% more energy-efficient than electric, according to Electrolux Appliances.

4. The induction surface not covered by cookware remains cool to the touch so spills and splatters do not burn onto the cooktop. This makes cleanup a breeze!

5. With preset touch settings you can immediately raise or lower the temperature so cooking can begin at any time – without waiting or preheating.

6. Sensors detect the presence of cookware, activate the induction field, and adjust it to the exact size of the pan, which reduces the possibility of burn injuries from open flames or red-hot coils.

Parrish & Company stores offer a selection of induction cooktops, and our friendly and experienced staff is happy to answer any and all questions about this technology. Call or come by today!