Categories Archive

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope your Thanksgiving week is filled with lots of laughter and love, not too much shopping and lots of good food. Next week I’ll be highlighting a few more of our Simon+Kabuki holiday cards and gifts. Plus a few of my favorite gifts that I’ve found this...

Back to School and Back to Lunch

I’m sure most of the country is back to school now that Labor Day is over. We start really early here in the Bay Area, August 13th! So my kids have been in school now for almost a month. It took some adjusting – getting up at 6:30am, making lunches, getting homework done and clothes sorted for school. Have you ever seen the movie The Jerk? Do you remember how excited Steve Martin was about getting the new phone book? That is how my kids act on Tuesdays, which are grocery shopping days around our house. They text me from school to remind me to buy things and ask if I’ve gone yet. When they get home they rush into the kitchen like it’s Christmas Day so excited to see what I’ve bought. You’d think they live in a third world country and never eat! My kids tend to walk around at school lunch to visit with their various friends, so having a good portable/walking lunch is the way to go. Here are some easy lunch ideas that my kids love: 1. pre-made salad bowls, tortilla roll ups with either meat or peanut butter, banana and honey, pumpkin muffins, sausage muffins/quiche, apples with peanut butter, frozen peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (sometimes I make a weeks worth and throw them in the freezer). What about you, any great ideas to share? If you haven’t yet finished back to school supply shopping don’t forget to check out our fun collections on Frecklebox.com. Here’s a new collection we designed for tweens, the Prep....

Gluten Free Potstickers

Potstickers are super yummy! When I’m at Costco I usually pick up a bag of their potstickers to keep in the freezer. Yesterday I decided to make my own and make them gluten free for my daughter. Making them from scratch is a lot of work, so make sure you have a couple of hours to devote to this yummy recipe. Mine may not be the prettiest pot stickers in town but they tasted good. And since it was my first attempt we’ll call it a success! Dough 1 cup white rice flour or sweet rice flour 3/4 cup tapioca flour pinch of salt 2 tablespoons oil 2/3 cup boiled water (adjust if necessary) Filling 1 lb. ground pork 4 cups chopped cabbage (I used pre-packaged cabbage for cole slaw) 1 teaspoon ground ginger 2 tablespoons minced garlic 3 tablespoons gluten-free soy sauce Combine filling ingredients and set aside. Combine flours, salt and oil, add boiling water and mix to form a dough. Dust a cutting board with rice flour and roll out dough, not too thin. I used a mason jar lid to cut circles. Fill with pork and crimp closed either by hand or you can use a fork. You can also use a tortilla press if you have one to make perfect wrappers. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to a pre-heated pan and add potstickers. Cook for 1-2 minutes per side, then add a 1/2 cup of water and cover and let steam for 4-6 minutes. I like to take the cover off and cook them a little longer so they have a slight crunch to...

Grow your own Mushrooms!

For Christmas I bought my hubby an oyster mushroom growing kit by Back to the Roots. We like to eat mushrooms and I thought it would be fun to see them grow. I should have given it to one of my kids because it sat on the counter unopened until now. But… It’s pretty amazing and super easy to do, no green thumb necessary. Mushrooms grow damn fast, you can eat them on the 10th day! It’s like one of those time lapse videos. You spray them with water twice a day – in the morning and night time – and by then they’ve grown an inch. We had to put a little wedge under the box because the weight of the mushrooms will tip the box over. The concept was started by two UC Berkeley students using coffee ground waste. Check out the kits here. Now we can have some fresh home grown vegetables for dinner tonight,...

Gluten, Nut and Dairy Free Microwave Granola

My daughter loves granola either eaten with soy milk, topping ice cream and even mixed into fruit shakes. It can be hard to find a granola that is free of all of her allergens so I tried making some at home in a small batch this weekend. It was pretty easy and she loved. This way I know she can eat it safely and I save about $5 for a small bag! The other fun thing about this recipe is all of the things you can add to make it exactly how you like it. Ingredients 1 cup Gluten Free Oats 1 T Oil (or dairy free butter or coconut oil) 2 T Honey (or maple syrup or agave) 1/2 tsp. Cinnamon (if desired) 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract or other flavoring Mix-Ins (pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, cranberries, raisins, shredded coconut, chocolate chips, etc.) Instructions Mix oats, cinnamon and seeds in a microwavable container.  Microwave oil, honey and extract for 30 seconds and mix to combine, pour over oat mixture and stir. Microwave for one minute, stir. Return to microwave for another minute, stir. Microwave for thirty seconds, stir. All microwaves are different so you may not need as much cooking time. Let granola cool before adding fruit or chocolate. Alternately, you could put the mixture on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees, check often to make sure it does not burn (cook for approx. 10 minutes). Store in a covered container and...

Gluten Free Holiday Desserts

I usually bring a gluten, dairy and nut free dessert to family gatherings for my daughter. Coming up with something new is sometimes difficult and often I need time to test out the recipe first to make sure it is presentable once I use substitutes for everything. I think this year I will be making this gluten free Buche de Noel again. I made it for Christmas last year but I think it would work for Thanksgiving also. It was pretty easy to make and as my daughters would say “it looks fancy!” CLICK HERE to go to the original post with recipe and directions. Here are a few other good recipes I may try. Click on the titles to get to the recipes. Just use substitutes if necessary. Gluten Free Pumpkin Bread just add a powdered sugar glaze to dress it up. Flourless Chocolate Cake Gluten Free Apple...

Easy Caramel Sauce

I love caramel sauce. If I could, I’d keep an IV attached at all times. I sometimes can overdose on caramel and have to take a step back. I used to get caramel lattes at Starbucks but I always asked for extra sauce so basically I had a cup of caramel with a squirt of coffee in it. Those days I was usually bouncing off the wall! Making caramel sauce at home is really easy and it’s awesome to have it in the frig. It’s great for coffee, putting on ice cream, hot chocolate and cakes, YUM! I made pumpkin bars this weekend using the Trader Joes mix, which is pretty good. It was missing a little something so I whipped up some caramel sauce. I bought a plastic squeeze bottle from World Market and store my sauce in the frig ready to go! Caramel Sauce 4 tablespoons butter 1 cup brown sugar 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract Mix all ingredients except for vanilla in a pan over medium heat. Bring to a boil and lower heat, stir occasionally and let cook for about 5-6 minutes. Add vanilla and cook for an additional minute or so. Let it cool and then put into a container in the frig. It will keep for two weeks (if it lasts that long). Heat to...

Last Veggie Harvest – Got Green Tomatoes?

On Friday, I was cleaning up the veggie garden and I had so many green tomatoes. Last year I made fried green tomatoes but this year I wanted to try something new. I decided to try pickled tomatoes. It’s a very easy process and hopefully pretty tasty. I don’t like tomatoes but everyone else in the family does. Here’s what I did: 1. Sterilize your canning jars in boiling water 2. Wash tomatoes, cut off stem and cut in half (mine were cherry tomatoes) 3. Combine  and boil 1 cup white vinegar, 1.25 cups water and 3 tablespoons kosher salt for 1 pound of green tomatoes 4. Put a clove of garlic and 1 tablespoon of dill seeds and 1/2 tablespoon whole black peppercorns into each jar or one large jar (I used 3 smaller jars). You can also add other seasonings, like a chili pepper 4. Pour the hot mixture over the tomatoes to within 1/4″ of the top. Wipe the jar top, put the lids on and tighten. Age for at least 2 days in the refrigerator. ENJOY! I also had lots of left over basil, which I love and use a lot. I washed all of the leaves and let them dry than put them in the freezer on a baking sheet. Once they were frozen I put them in a freezer zip lock bag. By individually flash freezing them first you retain the green color, otherwise they often will turn black. Click for some other options.     I also had lots of basil that I wanted to...

Yummy Allergen-Free Cookies

This weekend I was making some gluten/dairy free cookies. Often times they turn into a flat blob and Sunday was no exception. I wanted them to look decent not like pancakes since I was bringing them over to my sister’s for family movie night. My daughter and a couple of her cousins are gluten free but my daughter has the added issue of no dairy and no nuts (and many other things). Luckily my daughter had a brilliant idea that saved the day. We got out cupcake liners and put a small blob of cookie dough in the bottom then added a gluten free oreo type cookie (we used Trader Joes Joe Joes, tongue twister) then put another blob of cookie dough on top. We cooked them for around 15 minutes at 350 degrees and everyone loved them. Even the non-gluten free family members. You can use any cookie dough recipe you want, even peanut butter. I like using recipes, mixes and flour from Jules Gluten Free Flour it is the best and easiest to use, in my...

Let’s get Baking!

I am in the mood to do some baking! Every time I look over my Pinterest recipes I have to clean the drool off of my keyboard. Here are a few that I’ve collected and I hope to try out at least one this weekend. Which will it be? Such a difficult decision. Which would you make? For recipes just click on each picture or the link below. Now I’m off to the grocery store. Pumpkin Fritters by Simply Delicious Homemade Snicker Bars by How Sweet it is Pull apart Cinnamon Bread by Matkonation Salted Caramel Rice Krispies by Cookies and...

Favorite new Kitchen Appliance

I recently got a NutriBullet. I bought it at Bed, Bath and Beyond and used a coupon so it was $80 instead of $99. We’ve been needing a new blender for the last few years and I thought I would try this out. I’d heard lots of stories and testimonials about how great they are. First off it is super easy to use and clean. My kids have been making smoothies for breakfast and snacks every day since I bought it. You can throw in lots of healthy stuff and it tastes really good. I am by no means an expert yet but here are some tips that we’ve found helpful: 1. spinach and kale taste great mixed with fruit, who knew! 2. cut up and freeze bananas in large quantities, they are added to almost every smoothie 3. almond milk, coconut milk and soy milk add great flavor so does vanilla soy ice cream 4. we also add honey sometimes for sweetness 5. adding peanut butter or almonds gives it a great flavor 6. if you want a cold (shake like) smoothie add frozen fruit or ice 7. check out Pinterest for some great recipes We’ve only had the bullet a week but there are so many treats I want to try, like soup, sorbets, mousse, etc. it’s a very versatile little product. You can also use it to grind various grain into flour, I may try this with rice. You can also make almond or any kind of nut butter. If you have any great recipes to share send them my...

psychokitty throws a california dinner party

I didn’t even realize I was being a psycho until most of my so-called friends called me that when I told them my plans for not one, but two, dinner parties in three days. I was thinking it was super efficient to entertain a couple of days apart since I was renting tables, dishes, etc. Am I right? The first group were U.S. members of my husband’s cult board and the second group was the international cult board. I like to be compared to Martha Stewart (but with a pinch of Jennifer Aniston) as often as possible AND I just traveled to Italy where every meal is described by region, so I decided everything had to be local. I dragged my husband’s sober ass to a winery about 15 miles south of my backyard to pick out wine. Did I mention that he doesn’t drink and my favorite wine is Coors Light? Luckily we have lots of alcoholic friends who are willing to educate us. We picked out a Pinot Noir (which is apparently what the Kool Kids are drinking) and a Chardonnay for those who prefer beer and juice boxes. Of course we had to have wine from Napa Valley, since it’s a stone’s throw away and known around the world. I thought beer tasting would be a nice start (not because I was trying to get everybody wasted in case they were no fun) so I got local beers too, from hubby’s college town and San Francisco (also in the hood) and one from San Diego just because it’s called Arrogant Bastard. How could I NOT serve that? I...

How does your Garden Grow?

As you may recall from this previous post, I’ve had some issues with our vegetable garden and was trying out a new spot. The larger raised beds are under a tree and get dappled sunlight most of the day. So our vegetables weren’t thriving as well as I would have liked. So this year we cleared out an area on the super sunny side yard to plant. This side of our house gets sun all day, which is the reason the previous owners put in a Sunroom! It must have been a weight loss method because when it is 90 degrees outside and 100 degrees inside we are all dripping sweat! I digress. Anywho, after putting in new soil, fertilizer and planting, we have a thriving garden, almost too thriving. Lesson learned, when it says plant 18 inches apart they’re pretty serious. We have lettuce, chard, basil, tomatoes and eggplant growing quite nicely. Next plantings though will be more spread out and less lettuce, how many salads can one family eat?!  ...

Ice Tea and Simple Syrups

As soon as the weather starts warming up, I like to always have a jug of iced tea in the frig. I use a large mason jar and make a batch a couple of times a week. Several years ago when we were vacationing in Sedona and the Grand Canyon, I had Agave Nectar at a health food restaurant. I loved the flavor and have been using it ever since, plus it’s liquid so it dissolves easily in cold drinks. Lately, I’ve been making simple flavored syrups. It is super easy to make, dissolves in cold easily and can add an extra punch of flavor. Yesterday I made lavender syrup, it adds an interesting subtle flavor. To make the syrup use equal amounts of sugar to water – you can use raw sugar or white whatever is your preference. I usually do 3/4 cup sugar and 3/4 cup water. Put that in a pot to boil with whatever flavor enhancer you want to add. Some ideas: basil, mint, vanilla, almond, rose, dried lavender, etc. Get creative! A small handful usually does the trick. You can add more or less of the flavor to your taste. Boil for a minute or two to make sure the sugar dissolves completely, then set aside to cool and steep the flavors. Once cooled strain into a container and store in the frig for up to two weeks....

Planting a Vegetable Garden

The last few weeks we’ve been doing a lot of gardening. I am an amateur gardener at best. I try lots of stuff and see what works. A few years ago we took out our kids play structure and replaced it with garden boxes, a bench and a fire pit. We were totally excited to start planting. What we didn’t realize is the big beautiful tree that shaded our kids area also made growing veggies more difficult. Live and learn! What I have found is that some veggies like the half shaded area. We grow cauliflower, strawberries, broccoli, leeks and a few other veggies here. Tomatoes didn’t do so well so we plan to set up another box on our super sunny side yard. I’ve also recently started tucking veggies into pots with flowers. On my front porch I am growing jalapenos and rosemary. I have a separate flower box that I’ve planted mint. Make sure to plant mint separately otherwise it takes over the whole garden. I have seedlings for basil, cilantro and chives that I plan on adding amongst flowers. I hope this year I finally figure it out and have a very bountiful season! If you have any gardening tips I’d love to hear...

Mother’s Day Recipes

We always get together for Mother’s Day – we have to squeeze it in between soccer games, lacrosse games and life in general and it may not always be the exact day, but you always have to celebrate mom! I have a few favorite recipes that I make that are pretty easy. Most can be made the night before and cooked the next day or left cold, some have been passed down from family and some I’ve tried from cookbooks and loved, here are a few. I love making French Toast Casserole. It’s super easy and everyone loves it. Paula Deen has a great recipe that can be found here. Make the day before, refrigerate it overnight and then top with the praline and cook it the next morning. Yum! We also make a cold, spicy pasta dish. Make the day before to let all of the flavors get absorbed. It’s a great dish to bring anywhere since it is served cold. Ingredients: 1 lb. spaghetti 1 T crushed red pepper (less or more to your taste) 2 T sesame seeds 1/4 C vegetable oil (I use slightly less) 1/2 C sesame oil 6 T honey 6 T soy sauce 1/2 C cilantro 3/4 C peanuts Cook spaghetti according to directions. Rinse with cold water, set aside. Heat oils and red pepper over medium heat for 3 minutes, add honey and soy sauce and heat for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and toss with spaghetti. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, add remaining ingredients, toss and serve. You can also add cold chicken or shrimp or make it gluten...

Got Zucchini?

Last week I bought a bunch of zucchini. It’s one of those veggies that the whole family loves. Normally I slice it thin and just cook it with a little olive oil. This time I decided to make zucchini chips and Zucchini-Chocolate Chip Muffins. Sorry no pictures of the chips we ate them too fast! And actually I didn’t save any of those for the kids, my husband and I scarfed them quickly while the kids were out. If you make them make sure to make a lot they are yummy. For the chips slice the zucchini thinly and toss with olive oil and salt. Cook at 250° for 2-3 hours depending on your oven. If they are still a little soft you can even microwave them. They are a delicious crunchy snack and healthy to boot! The muffins are a perfect breakfast snack and they are healthier than some of the other things they grab. Zucchini-Chocolate Chip Muffins – 24 servings 3 cups all-purpose flour 1-1/2 cups white sugar (I used 1 cup raw sugar and 1/2 cup brown sugar instead of white) 2 teaspoons baking soda 1 teaspoon salt 2 egg, lightly beaten 1 cup vegetable oil 1/2 cup milk 2 tablespoons lemon juice 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 2 cups shredded zucchini (I used a cheese grater) 1 cup chocolate chips 1 cup chopped nuts (optional) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 24 muffin cups, or line with paper muffin liners. Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Mix egg, oil, milk, lemon juice, and vanilla extract in another bowl; stir into dry ingredients...

Farm Fresh

The first day of Spring was March 20! It has been sunny and warm around here and with the warmer weather the Farmer’s Markets start opening up. Some are open year round but I hate the thought of walking around in the rain to buy my fruits and veggies. But a sunny Saturday morning with coffee in hand sounds so much better. My kids love going to the farmer’s market for all of the fruit samples. They go from stand to stand tasting and then decide what their favorite was and that is what gets bought that day. We have a new farmer’s market that just opened down the street from us, so that is exciting. They say it is best to buy local and organic so why not buy from the farms in your area, it benefits everyone! If you are looking for a market in your area check out Localharvest.org, a great site with lots of information. Plus now a days farmer’s markets have so much more than just fruit and veggies, you can buy bread, dips, fish, meat and all sorts of other fun stuff. Be adventurous and buy a fruit or veggie you’ve never tried...

Easy Peasy Snacks

Before I get into the yummy, easy snacks we made this weekend, I just want to bitch a little bit about daylight savings time. It is hard enough waking up in the morning and getting the kids up now we spring ahead and lose an hour and have to get up in the dark again? Yuck! Plus why Sunday, does Friday not make more sense? Why do it the day before school and work why not give us the weekend to adjust? For everything you ever wanted to know about daylight savings click here. While I’m on the subject of stupid things can we switch Halloween to the last Saturday in October? Done bitching. I recently bought some frozen pie crust so I could make a quick blueberry pie, but since berries last about an hour in our house I did not have blueberries for my blueberry pie. What to do? I decided to make little pockets of chocolate filled goodness. It was super easy I just cut the pie crust put some chocolate chips in and fork pinched them closed. I cooked them for about 15 minutes at 375°. They were super easy and super yummy. We also had some kale from our local farmer’s market and our favorite way to eat kale is to make kale chips. If you have not tried kale chips yet, you must! Delicious! Tear all the leaves off and toss with some olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic. Put them on a baking sheet and cook at 425° until crisp, about 15 minutes. Keep an eye on them so they don’t get...

Milfy Mondays – Look what’s Cooking

I get a farm veggie box delivered to my house once a month. Sometimes it’s a magical mystery tour and I have no idea what something is or how to cook and eat it. This week we got this alien, fractal looking oddball. I did like the bright green color but of course had no idea what it was or what to do with it. Guess what it is? Romanesco, a part of the broccoli/cauliflower family and its description sounds pretty yummy. I decided to add it and swiss chard to pasta. I roasted it with a little olive oil than tossed it with the pasta. I would say it has a very mild flavor so if you want to introduce your kids to a fun looking vegetable than Romanesco is the way to go. Last year we grew lots of cauliflower and broccoli in the garden so I am guessing this would also grow well, I may need to add it to my list of what to grow next. I think we’ll finish off the evening with pumpkin muffins. We did spend the day cleaning the yard of dead leaves and trimming unruly plants. It was a sunny day and it was nice to be outside and now my yard looks...

Superbowl 2013

This Sunday everyone will be tuned to their television to watch some hot girls eating doritos, frogs singing about beer, a baby talking about finances, and maybe to watch the Superbowl! There are plenty of websites that have which commercials will be playing and the scoop, here’s one to check out. I also love all of the fun (ny) facts that come out during the game, it’s kind of like the Olympics. Here’s a few random ones: 1. 1.23 billion chicken wings fans will be eating on Sunday (that’s 4 wings per person in the US), 2. Vegetables are the top food eaten in homes during Super Bowl (maybe they were drunk when they wrote these facts or they forgot about the wings), 3. Nearly one-third of U.S. adults are likely to bet on the big game, 4. Of the 10 most-watched programs in U.S. television history, nine of them are Super Bowls. In fact, last year’s Super Bowl tops the list with a whopping 111.3 million viewers, 5. 51.7 million cases of beer are sold to quench Super Bowl fans, 6. Antacids sales increase 20% on the day after Super Bowl, 7. For the first time in Super Bowl history, two brothers will face off against each other as head coaches. Are you having a party at your house? The one nice thing about football is that there are so many commercials it is pretty easy to eat, drink, mingle and go to the bathroom. Try putting a crockpot up with barbequed pork for easy make yourself sliders. Here are some other food ideas from FoodTV including some...

Holiday Cookie Exchange

Getting ready for our annual Cookie Exchange next week. Checking out some fun recipes I might try. Right now I am addicted to the Trader Joes white chocolate peppermint pretzels (thank god they only sell them at Christmas). I plan on making a version of those with pretzel sticks and just dip them in white chocolate and crushed candy canes. I also always make fudge, because it is easy and I like it (its all about me!). I think Molasses Crinkles will be on my list as well. I try not to make any cut-out or decorated cookies for the exchange just because they are more time consuming. We usually bring a few different sets of cookies each, we are not part of the super annal group who send out invites with specific rules on how many cookies and what kind to make. We are all about the camaraderie and eating and if a some get packed and saved for friends and family it was their lucky day. Here are some of the crazier rules I found online: 1. All cookies should be homemade, baked and the main ingredient must be flour (Flour? As opposed to what? I guess fudge is out!) 2. No plain chocolate chip cookies, cookie mixes, no-bakes, meringues or bars (some of those are damn good, and my sister makes a mean chocolate chip cookie) 3. RSVP as soon as you can and let me know what type of cookies you are planning on baking – no duplicate recipes allowed (yeah right, I’m baking the night before and they’re a surprise – so live with it)...

Soup and Pumpkin Muffins

This weekend California finally got the cold weather that everyone else was experiencing. Last week we had highs in the upper 80’s but this weekend it was more like 50-60 degrees. Which is cold for us California wimps. After spending most of Saturday and Sunday on soccer fields wrapped in a blanket, I needed something to warm up my bones. I made Matzo Ball soup (I just use a package) and for dessert pumpkin muffins and tea. It was yummy, easy and hit the spot just right. I guess it is time to drag out the crock pot. I love it when the whole house smells like yummy food all day! The pumpkin muffins make a large batch and are perfect for breakfast or a mid-morning snack. My kids take them to school to eat before after school soccer practice. You can also add in nuts or pumpkin seeds for a nice crunch. My next version I will try gluten free. I use Jules Gluten Free Flour (the best gluten free flour I’ve ever used!) and it usually works just like regular flour. Got any great recipes to pass on?   Pumpkin Muffins Heat oven to 350 Degrees 3 1/3 cups flour 2 tsp. baking soda 3 cups sugar 1 1/2 tsp. salt 1 tsp. nutmeg 1/4 tsp. ginger 1 cup oil (I switched out 2/3 of the oil for applesauce) 4 eggs 2/3 cup water 2 cups canned pumpkin 1/2 bag of chocolate chips (optional but yummy) Mix dry ingredients first and then add wet and mix. You can use cupcake liners or grease and flour a muffin...

father's day barbeque

This weekend we’ll be celebrating all the dads in our family by having a barbeque. We pretty much barbeque and swim all summer long but we like to pretend that we are getting together only for this special occasion. It’s nice to cook outside on hot days and not heat up the house and swimming keeps the kids entertained for hours. We usually throw chicken, sausage, corn and ribs on the barbeque. And then have some fruit salad and a green salad. For dessert we like the classic s’mores but we often make them as s’mores bars, see recipe below, very yummy and make ahead. S’mores Bar 24 graham cracker sqs. 3/4 c. packed brown sugar Dash of salt 3/4 c. butter 4 c. marshmallows 1 bag chocolate chips Line a 15 x 10 x 1 inch baking pan with foil. Arrange graham crackers close together in a single layer. Combine butter, brown sugar, and salt in small saucepan; cook until mixture is blended, stirring, for about 1 to 2 minutes. Spread mixture over graham crackers. Bake in 350 degree oven 10 minutes or until bubbly; top with one bag of chocolate chips (my sister the chocoholic adds two bags), bake a few minutes to melt, then top with marshmallows, bake 3-5 minutes than broil just until the marshmallows brown slightly. Be careful they brown very quickly so watch constantly. Cool 10 minutes. I usually refrigerate before cutting so it is easier. Very messy but yummy!   ribs, table setting, smores, invitation, drink station cookies, Superman Apron, Chef...

let's celebrate all of the moms in the world!

Hopefully by now most of us have planned out our Mother’s Day brunch, lunch or dinner and have the gift all wrapped and ready to go. Unfortunately I am not most of us! I still have to figure out what to get for my mom who has everything. The brunch part is a little easier to plan and you can always find great ideas on Pinterest, Better Homes and Gardens and other great web sources. If the weather is nice than an outdoor party is a must. You can use a couple of yards of  burlap as a table cloth and use potted plants or potted herbs as centerpieces. To keep the kids busy put out a bunch of pictures and have them make crafts with them. You can use the photo jars as centerpieces as well. And since it is Mother’s Day and you won’t be driving, how about a fruity cocktail? You can let the kids get in on the fun with shirley temples and pretty straws. Try to keep the menu simple even if it is just hamburgers and hot dogs. We often have a swim/bar-b-que on any warm holiday. Throwing corn, chicken, veggies and burgers on the bar-b-que is a great job for the men in the family! Men seem to be born to cook with fire outside. So now that I have the day/menu planned I just need to run out and get the ultimate “I love you mom!” gift. Got any great ideas? Ideas L to R: Cookies, straws, photo jars, table setting, french toast casserole, egg toast cup,...