Archives for summer

4 Survival Tips for Summer

As a kid there is nothing better than summer vacation–late nights, late mornings, no homework, more junk food, more TV and endless play time.  At least that is how I remember it in the 70s when I was growing up.  And while I never sensed that my mom was going out of her mind at the time, she had to have had her moments.  As I “work” through another summer with my boys, here are my four survival tips for summer that I learned from my mom! #1. Great Summer Care is Not Easy to Find My mom opened a

Slow Down to Go Fast

I do not like to be early.  I don’t like it when people are early to come visit me, and thus I don’t want to sneak up on anyone either.  I also think that it’s a waste of time (obviously this is a misnomer on my part).  So I’m famous for doing “one more quick thing” before heading out and invariably it puts me behind.  This then begins the domino affect into madness.  Like recently, when I was running out of the house, behind schedule, to pick up the boys and my hands were full of karate uniforms, my wallet

Zucchini Cupcakes

I am always trolling the “day old” section at the grocery store in the produce department.  They typically put out things that aren’t perfect enough to sell at the going rate, but still completely useable.  My favorite items to look for are brown bananas that I freeze for smoothies and banana “ice cream” and then zucchini.  The zucchini can be used for these decadent cupcakes that seem healthy in concept, but deliver on their dessert promise.  And then also my zucchini pancakes or zucchini bread–both family crowd pleasers!  These can also be made with any of the summer squash and/or with shredded

Loaded with Ginger Snaps

December is my favorite month when it comes to food.  I love to bake…mostly because I LOVE to eat sweets.  Everyone needs a vice…right?!?! Growing up I was not a fan of gingersnaps.  Likely because they truly were snaps.  Or would cause you to snap a tooth!  My gingersnaps are soft and chewy, not hard and brittle.  Enough said!   They are great in the fall wrapped up with raffia for gifts, and great with a cup of tea, anytime really.  And you can also sandwich two with vanilla ice cream, which makes them the most “year round” cookie around.

Banana Bread

I know that there are probably many ways I could use up “spent” bananas like freezing them and spinning them up in a kale smoothie.  But seriously, banana bread is so much better!  This is by far one of the easiest recipes I have.  You put all of the ingredients in the bowl in order while mixing them. Period. I of course bake them in mini loaves, because they get done so much faster and it’s easier to eat some and save some in the freezer.  Every one loaf of bread makes three mini loaves–for future reference.  But you can

Smores Toffee

I bought my husband a fire pit for Father’s Day two years ago with visions of smores dancing in my head along with campfire songs and family bonding. Needless to say, he envisioned hours of assembly, reams of newspaper, drying out wood and tons of blowing…and thus we’ve used it twice since! So for those of you that yearn for the taste of smores sans the campfire, this is the recipe for you!! This is a variation on cracker toffee, if you’ve ever had it. The difference being, in the “regular” recipe you use saltines instead of graham crackers, chocolate

Where’re Max and Ruby’s Parents?

The boys successfully “fasted” from hand held screens throughout Ramadan this summer and once the season came to a close, they didn’t really ask for them, so I’m certainly not going to offer them!  The only place that it has come up of late is at restaurants when they ask, “What are we going to do while we wait?!?!”. Hmmmmm…let me see, I have a novel idea, why don’t we talk to each other.  To their response, “Okay, what are we going to talk about?”. So randomly, we have been talking about popular children’s shows and the parts of them that make absolutely no sense.  For example: Why

Blueberry Peach Pound Cake

I have noted before that we get a farm share from a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), which we love, but there are times, during peak season, that we have some “abundances”.  Right now it’s blueberries and peaches.  Not that I am complaining!  So what better way to enjoy fresh fruit than in a pound cake–of course!  While this recipe can be found in our summer cookbook in the cakes section, it really is a breakfast item in my mind.  Zain would really have preferred icing over the powdered sugar–but who wouldn’t!  I think the batter would also work great

Fresh Cucumber Salsa

We have purchased a share from a local CSA for the past five years (Farmer Dave’s).  For the first year or two, we did the “half” share, but now that everyone is “growing up” we do a full share and I won’t lie–it’s a full time job keeping everything from going bad before we use it!  While I love the concept of farm to table meals and encouraging my kids to eat their veggies–one is WAY better at it than the other–it does take a concerted effort to keep creative when you are looking at 6 cucumbers, 4 giant zucchinis

Dover Pound Cake

I’ve noted this in my very first post on this site (Full Transparency) and it bears repeating.  When I post a recipe it’s because I just made it, or when I did make it, I took a quick snapshot of it before we devoured it.  This is no exception.  I’ve made this recipe twice of late, and both times it got eaten so quickly, that I wasn’t able to do a posed photo.  Actually, this photo is of me holding my portion that I’m about to down, as my uncle Rod took a quick shot from his phone and then