I have a confession y’all…I hate bananas. Even more odd…I love making banana bread. Right? Such a contradiction. Here’s the deal: from a very young age I would complain to my parents that bananas made my mouth itch. However, this weird itching thing didn’t lend itself to showing up on an allergy test so my parents chalked it up to this little girl being her dramatic self and just not liking bananas. So be it. But I still stand by my complaint – bananas make my mouth itch and I will not eat them. As much as I personally despise the fruit…my little girl has given me a new appreciation for them. They’re natures easiest food – soft for the early eater, loaded with nutrients and no packaging required. And thanks to banana breads, I can always get the most out of my bananas without ever having to eat them. I’ll take it…just don’t make me eat it.
Let me just brag for a moment…Texas is having an AMAZING winter this year (and now I’m sure I just jinxed it). In fact, I’m currently enjoying the sunshine and 65 degree weather as I write this (I’m pushing my luck at this point, I just know it). I think my favorite part about it so far are the abundance of bright, springy flowers in the shops around here. Bushels of bright yellow calla lilies can be seen everywhere! Perhaps this is the normal time of year for it but for some reason it just feels like this is the first time I’m thinking “yay!” versus the typical, “ok, you’re getting ahead of yourself spring.” Maybe it’s the calla lilies, maybe it’s the sunshine, but at this point in time all I can thing about is getting out from the heavy dark chocolate lava cakes and making springy, fluffy, bright desserts.
I know it’s not quite strawberry season just yet but nothing can stop Valentine’s Day from covering fruit in chocolate to convince everyone they’re getting a healthy goodie right? See …it’s not me…it’s that tricky Hallmark holiday, Valentine’s Day. Regardless, Trader Joe’s has my strawberries and I had an idea I just HAD to try. And now I just HAVE to share it with yall! I present to you…drumroll please…strawberry hearts!
So you got invited to a diaper shower huh? If you’re not a female over the age of 25 you probably don’t know what the heck a diaper shower is. And that’s ok! My husband finally just kept calling it, “that thing you’re going to.” So let me explain. Not to make you feel stupid but diaper showers are pretty much exactly what they sound like; you shower a person with diapers. The reason it’s not a baby shower is most likely because someone else is already throwing one of those for the mom-to-be so they’re diversifying or it’s not their first child and have the baby necessities. So, there goes the element of surprise with, “what could this gift be!?” If we can’t have that, why not have, “OMG! How cute!” Yes, that can be the reaction with diapers and wipes, I assure you 🙂
Get those leftovers out of my house!! Ok, maybe I’ll keep a couple of cookies and some stuffing 🙂 But seriously, we all know Thanksgiving is even better the second day around – a roll, some turkey, top it with some stuffing and a dab of cranberry? Forgeddaboutit. But if you’re having the typical American Thanksgiving, there will be enough food to feed five times the amount of people you actually have…that just means you’ve done Thanksgiving right in my book…NO SHAME. So on top of everything else you’re doing to host (or attend!!), snag some Dollar Tree bags, an armload of Chinese take out boxes from Michaels or drop down the tupperware aisle at Target and make these unforgettable Thanksgiving leftover bags to entice those guests (and yourself) that you CAN fit just ONE MORE piece of pie in there.
“I get by with a little help from my friends.” This has definitely been my theme song this year. I don’t know about you, but for my husband and I, our friends become our family, or “framily.” It’s taken more effort to keep up with them all once our little girl came along but opportunities like Friendsgiving are a perfect way to get everyone together for great food, good wine and some nice hearty belly laughs. Here’s some of the activities that made our first Friendsgiving a success.
It happened. We raised a child without killing ourselves or said child for a whole year. Actually – I think we did surprisingly well 🙂 And that’s cause for celebration. If you’ve been keeping up with me from the beginning here you’ll know we didn’t find out if we were having a girl or boy (see this post or this one if you want more details on gender-neutral baby world things) and we loved every moment of our beautiful surprise. That being said, I didn’t have any super girly or super boyish baby prep festivities. So for this little girl’s first birthday I decided to make up for it – the theme would be all things GIRLY. Bring on the pink, sparkle, flowers & frill!
White chocolate? Chocolate and strawberries? But some people are a salty sweet kind of person. How does one choose what to make for a birthday party? My answer is don’t! When it comes to sweets – make it all!! There’s only a few times a year you get to go totally crazy with your baking creations. Now if that’s just ridiculous, cool – choose whichever of these creations tickles your fancy – you can’t go wrong.
My best friend got married!! I know…she’s stupidly gorgeous right? So was her wedding. It was the perfect Texas Hill Country affair with peonies and lace to die for. And at the last-minute, while we were picking up the tidbits before heading back to the hotel I asked what her plans were with her bouquet. Lucky for me, she didn’t already have plans for it (because you know…she was busy planning a wedding and all) so I jumped on it and figured I’d try my hand at preserving it.
Have I mentioned lately that everyone is getting married and having babies? AND I LOVE IT! Seriously, two of life’s most life changing events you’ll ever go through: getting married and having a child. Experiencing these in your life is one thing…having the privilege to watch your friends walk this path too, almost at the same time, is just magical. And of course the fact that it all calls for parties is pretty great too!