Ham & Potato Soup {recipe}


I needed some soup to warm me up the other day.. plus I just feel like the weekend is a good time for crock pot cookin'.. less time in the kitchen, and more time spent with family.  This is definitely a keeper.  My husband is not much a soup eater, but ate it anyway.. what a trooper.  ;)  I told him he better get used to it because the winter is my favorite time to eat soup.. and I love me some soup.  I changed it from the original recipe just a little.. I added one more chicken bouillon cube, to give it more flavor.  After I served myself some, I also added just a little bit of shredded cheddar cheese on top.  Because I like cheese.  :)

We'll be eating this again!

Ham & Potato Soup
adapted from WW Recipes
  • 7 c. diced potatoes (about 4 medium)
  • 1 c. diced onion (about 1 medium)
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 2 c. ham, diced
  • 5. c. hot water
  • 5 small chicken bouillon cubes
  • 1 c. milk
  • 1/2 c. sour cream
  • Garlic powder, salt, & pepper, to taste
  • Shredded cheddar cheese, optional

Add diced potatoes, onion, carrot, and ham to a crock pot. Dissolve chicken bullion in 5 cups hot water, then add to crock. Cook on low 7 hours, or high 3 hours. Then add milk and sour cream. Stir and cook an additional 15 minutes. Add seasonings to taste.  Sprinkle a little cheese on top if you want.

If you'd like a thicker soup (which I did), just before adding milk and sour cream, slightly mash the potato mixture.

Makes approximately 12 1-cup servings. 

How I Menu Plan


Menu planning.

If you know how to do it effectively, it can be a huge help instead of a huge headache.  Menu planning can be a good thing for anyone - those who work, those who stay at home, those who want to eat out less, or want to get their grocery bill within a reasonable budget.  There is no right or wrong way to meal plan.  It's all about what is easiest for you and what works for your family.  I will share what currently works for my family and I.

Why do I meal plan?  It helps me save money as well as time in the kitchen - that way I can figure out what we're having to eat without standing in front of the fridge trying to figure it out at 5pm, stressing over it, and then ending up spending more time doing all that rather than enjoying more time with my family.  Dinner time should be an enjoyable time, not a stressful one.  And I've also found that I enjoy cooking a lot more, when I'm prepared for it in advance.  Less stress and less money being spent on last minute out-to-eat decisions.  When I meal plan, I take into account what our schedule is like for the week.  If we have anywhere to go, appointments, or if my husband has a class.  That way I can plan to have a crock-pot meal that day, or something else easy and quick, and still know that we're having a good meal.

Coupons.  I only use a coupon on something if we need it or I'm already going to buy it.  Using a coupon on something that you weren't already going to buy, or you won't need/use.. even if it's cheap.. is still a waste of money.  I buy the Sunday paper, they have good coupons in there.  And I also print out internet coupons.  They're obviously even better when you use them when the item is on sale.  ;)

Things I Consider when meal planning:  What I currently have in my pantry/fridge/freezer, coupons/sales, new recipes, appointments/busy days, leftovers.

I normally meal plan for roughly 2 weeks at a time (every pay check).  There's just 3 of us - my husband, me, and my 16 month old.  My goal is to spend $170 or less at the grocery store, and that includes toiletries, diapers, wipes, etc.   I do 'schedule in' a time to eat out once every 2 weeks, sometimes more.. depends, really.  I feel like if I schedule it in, then I feel less guilty about it.  Plus, we love going out to eat and exploring new restaurants!  So I always make sure that fits into our budget.  We also eat leftovers once a week or so, so I take that into account.

I've used many apps for my meal planning - ZipList, FoodOnTheTable, SpringPad.  But honestly?  I prefer a plain ol' pen and notebook when I'm working on my grocery list, etc.  I also use a pretty printable, to write down our weekly menu.  I put the pretty printable in a frame, and then write on it with a dry erase marker.,, so I'm not constantly printing off new ones and wasting paper/ink.  Actually, now that I type this.. I have a really fun idea on how to display our menu in the kitchen (my husband likes it to be visible lol)... once I figure out how to put it together, I'll blog it.  :)

Here are some fun and pretty printables for you, this is where I printed mine off ----> click here.  Because pretty little things always make me happier.  :)

An example of my current menu, for this 2 weeks:
  • 11/1 - Out to Eat
  • 11/2 - Chicken Fried Rice
  • 11/3 - Ham & Potato Soup, with a side salad
  • 11/4 - Tacos
  • 11/5 - Leftovers
  • 11/6 - Chicken Alfredo Roll-Ups, with garlic bread and fruit
  • 11/7 - Breakfast (we love having breakfast for dinner)
  • 11/8 - Chicken Noodle Casserole (per my husbands request.. one of his favorite comfort foods;)
  • 11/9 - Leftovers
  • 11/10 - Turkey Chili & Cornbread
  • 11/11 - Beef & Broccoli over rice
  • 11/12 - Zuppa Toscana, with a side salad
  • 11/13 - Leftovers
  • 11/14 -  Salmon with wild rice and fresh veggies
  • 11/15 - Chicken Breast with Mushrooms & White Wine Cream Sauce, veggies

I try to plan around what meats are on sale (we eat a lot of chicken, and we try to replace ground beef with turkey when we can), or use up what I've stocked up on last time I bought meat that was on sale.  We love fresh produce, but it can be pricey if it's not season - so, we try to only eat what's in season.  We are eating a lot of apples these days.  ;)  I incorporate 3-4 new recipes, to keep things interesting.  I also try to make sure I have some quick and easy (and crock pot) recipes mixed in.. because I KNOW there will be nights where I don't feel like doing much of anything.  And we try to eat up our leftovers - whether it's for lunch the next day, or as leftovers for dinner.  It helps cut costs, and I really hate wasting food.

And, after every shopping trip, I clean out the fridge and the pantry.  Having a clean, organized space definitely makes things easier (for me, anyway).

I also try to plan for anything extra I might want to bake or create (and I love to bake).  We obviously keep the staples in our house (eggs, flour, sugar, choco chips, etc).. but if there's something I want to make that requires a special ingredient, I plan for that too.  For example, this paycheck I think I'm going to make a couple different types of muffins, some pumpkin oatmeal cookies, and I need to replenish our homemade chocolate sauce.  ;)

Do you meal plan?  How do you do it?  What works for your family?

Lean & Green Juice {recipe}


My husband has been on this juice/smoothie kick lately.  So I've had the pleasure of trying out a billion (ok maybe just a hand full) of different recipes.  Today I made one called 'Lean & Green' for him before he went off to his class for the night.  After working all day, then off to college at night, this should keep him refreshed.  Hopefully.  :)

Now I know things like this (with spinach) wouldn't work as well in our old blender.  But for my birthday in August, my mama bought me the Ninja Professional, and it pretty much blends anything.  And for those of you who have never tried a green smoothie - no, you can't taste the spinach.  I promise. 

I took it with me on a little stroll with Clara around the neighborhood.  I gave her a taste, too, and she loves it.  She kept asking for more, and of course, it's healthy, so I'm all about giving her more if she likes it!


Lean & Green Juice
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • 1 banana, peeled
  • 1 whole kiwi, peeled*
  • 1 1/2 cups pineapple chunks
  • 5 or so ice cubes
  • Splash of apple juice, or white grape juice

Place all ingredients in blender.  And blend/pulse on high until smooth.  Makes 2 servings.

*Did you know.. that ounce for ounce, kiwi is the most nutrient dense when compared to 27 other fruits?

glazed pumpkin scones {recipe}


With it being October, I feel like everything I bake must have some sort of pumpkin incorporated into it.  I love pumpkin, and only get to bake with it during the holiday seasons - so I gotta eat it up while I can.  ;)  I wanted to do something different for breakfast Saturday morning, and landed on this recipe.  It was something different than waffles, pancakes, or pumpkin bread.. and we really enjoyed it!  They were flaky, and moist.  The powdered sugar/maple glaze compliments it very well, too.  Even my lovely guinea pig (my husband) enjoyed it.  These would be good for a snack as well, not just for breakfast.  But I will tell you this - they go really well with a good cup of coffee.  Try it out, I don't think you'll be disappointed!

Glazed Pumpkin Scones
slightly adapted from Some the Wiser

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, frozen
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3 tablespoons plain yogurt (greek or regular)
  • 1 large egg
  • Powdered sugar
  • Milk
  • Vanilla extract
  • Maple syrup

Preheat oven to 400 F.  In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices.  Using largest holes on a box grater, grate frozen butter into flour mixture and mix until it resembles coarse meal.

In a small bowl, combine egg, pumpkin, and yogurt and mix well.   Stir yogurt mixture into flour mixture.  Using hands, shape dough into a ball, making sure to fold in all the loose clumps.

When dough is well combined and sticks together in a large ball, turn out onto a lightly floured surface.  Shape into a 7 inch circle, approximately 3/4 inch thick, and cut into 8 equal pieces.   With space between each triangle, place on a parchment covered (or silicone mat) baking sheet.  Bake for approximately 15 minutes, or until golden.   Allow scones to cool and prepare glaze.

Now, for the glaze... I never use exact measurements for things like this.. so I'm sorry to all of you who don't like to eyeball things.  Mix together milk and powdered sugar until it's at a glaze-like consistency.  Add about 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract.  Add in maple syrup, to taste.  Start with about 1 tbsp. and go from there.   Drizzle the glaze over the cooled scones, and enjoy!

September Love Club


LoveClub is a monthly subscription service... though, you don't have to subscribe... you can purchase 1 month at a time, 3 months at a time, 6 months, or even a year... of course, if you buy a longer subscription, it's cheaper.  They deliver accessories, beauty products, paper products, and fun little things from independent & homemade businesses.  A lot of these businesses also have an Etsy - and we all know that I love Etsy... and homemade goodies.  So I figured this box would be right up my alley. 

It's a fun way for independent vendors to get the word out about their business.  And fun for me because it's like a little Christmas present getting delivered to my doorstep every month... with fun samples and coupon codes.  I already have a couple ideas for Christmas presents now.. and coupon codes to go with it!

They have a wait-list to join, and I think that is closed at the moment.  But on their website it says they plan on opening it mid-October.  So if this is something you're interested (and it's totally worth it, I promise), then keep an eye out on their website for when they open the wait-list.  And sometimes they have random opportunities to join on their Facebook, which is how I was able to join.  And get this, the price for one month is only $12 (free shipping)!  If you get 3 months, it's about 10.50 a month, etc. 

So, here is what I received in my LoveClub box for September..

Mame Luxury Soy Candles.  Who doesn't love candles?
Wild Rose Herbs.  A moisturizing oil for me.  And a 'beard conditioning' oil for my hubs that can be used as a pre-shave conditioner.  Kind of fun to have something thrown in for the hubby too.
Pen & Paint.  Cute little notecards.
Studio 336.  Super fun decals!
Pamplemousse1983.  A sweet print.. in fact, I've found a fun little place for it already.

Also, some little candies, and lots of great coupon codes from all these vendors and more.  I'm ready to get my Christmas shopping on!

I'm already excited to get next months box!  I love surprises.  :)  What do you think?  Would you subscribe to LoveClub?

Have a HAPPY weekend!

toddler muffins {recipe}


So Clara is going through this thing, where all she wants to eat is bread, cheerios, and yogurt.  She doesn't want ANY vegetables.  Probably partly a phase, and partly because those nasty molars she has coming in.  At any rate, the girl needs some veggies in her life.  When I came across this recipe on Pinterest, I thought it was worth a try since it has bananas, squash, oats, and carrots in it.

She eats these up like they are the best thing on earth.  And that makes this mama very happy.

They do actually taste good... I had a few right when they came from the oven.  You can mainly taste the banana.  They freeze well too, so you can make a big batch of them and always have them on hand for a snack, or for breakfast.  I would highly suggest these to anyone whose kiddo refuses the veggies (because I know I'm not the only one!).

Toddler Muffins
recipe from AllRecipes
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 large ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 (4.5 ounce) jar baby food squash
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
 Preheat an oven to 375 F. Grease 24 mini muffin cups or 12 standard muffin cups.  I like the mini muffins personally, because they are just her size.  ;)

In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar until smooth. Mix in the mashed bananas, squash, carrots, and eggs. Stir in the flour, oats, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and salt until just combined. Spoon the batter equally into the prepared muffin cups.

Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes for regular muffins (8-9 minutes for mini - but keep an eye on them.. every oven is different). Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on a wire rack. Store at room temperature in an air-tight container for up to two days, or freeze.  To freeze, place muffins on a tray and 'flash freeze' in freezer for about 10 minutes.  Then place muffins into a freezer bag and back into the freezer.  Take out and thaw as you need them. 

Clara approved.  ;)

homemade taco seasoning {recipe}


Oh hey!  I'm back, and we're all moved into our home in Arkansas.  Still a few boxes here and there.. but for the most part, we're settled.  We just got internet a few days ago so now I can get back to blogging - so much to write about!

I've been living off caffeine and scrubbing the house like a mad woman.  And Clara has been right behind me making a mess again.  ;)  She's adjusted well to all the new surroundings and moving, and car trips.  I've said it before, but I'll say it again - she is such a good traveler. 

This post I really wanted to share with you the homemade taco seasoning recipe I've come across.  I know there are a few different ones floating around, but this is the one I use and it's spot on.  I used it tonight for dinner, actually, and my mouth is watering from the aroma coming from the kitchen.  In a few days I'll share tonights recipe.

Making your own taco seasoning is one of the easiest things you could do.  It takes next to no time, and you know there aren't any preservatives in it like there is in the packet you buy at the store.  Oh, and it's cheaper and tastes just as delicious.  I normally triple this recipe and store it in a mason jar.  It'll last a long time, as long as it's store in an air-tight container.  But we love mexican food in this house.. so it never lasts long.  ;)

Homemade Taco Seasoning

recipe from Mex Recipes
  • 4 tbsp. chili powder
  • 3 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. paprika
  • 3 tbsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp. plus 2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne peppers
Combine all ingredients in a bowl, and mix well to blend.  Store in airtight container until ready to use.

To prepare taco meat, use 2 heaping tablespoons in place of one package of taco seasoning.  Cook approximately 1 lb. of beef or chicken, add 1 cup of water with the seasoning, and simmer until the liquid is almost completely gone.

the next adventure


I know it's been forever since I've blogged.. I've been incredibly busy.  Tomorrow early (like, before-the-birds-start-chirpin' early), we head out on the road for Arkansas.  Our new home for the next few years.  And our next adventure.

Life is always an adventure, isn't it?  I wouldn't have it any other way.  I'm hoping to be 'back to blogging' in a couple weeks.. after our move, and we're settled, and I'm maybe half-way kind of rested.  ;)

I snapped a photo this afternoon, while I was relaxing in the house.. after my husband and dad hooked my car up to the back of our truck.. and stuffed it full.  It's sweet, right?

lemon blueberry bread {recipe}


I love blueberries.  I like them in my smoothies, pancakes, muffins, cupcakes, on top of my spinach salads, or in my cereal.  I had a pint of blueberries in the fridge that I kind of 'forgot' about.. when I noticed them the other day, they really need to be used up.  Like, ASAP.  So I did a little searching, and came across this recipe.  Now, I don't normally like lemon things (lemon bars, cookies, etc).. I don't know, it's just not for me.  I'd much rather have something sweeter.  But honestly, the blueberries and lemon compliment each other so nicely in this!  And then with the little glaze on top.. oh YUM.  This goes especially good with coffee in the morning.  Trust me.. it does.

Lemon Blueberry Bread
recipe from Erica's Sweet Tooth

  • 1-1/2 cups + 1 tbsp all purpose flour, divided
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest (from 2 lemons)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
 Lemon Syrup
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3-4 tbsp milk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease the bottom and sides of a 9x5" loaf pan, dust with flour, and tap out excess.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.  In a large bowl, whisk together the yogurt, sugar, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla, and oil.  Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet.  In a separate bowl mix the blueberries with the 1 tbsp of flour and then gently fold them into the mixed batter.  Pour the batter into the pan and bake 50-55 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.

Let bread cool in the pan for 10 minutes, and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.  While the loaf is cooling, combine the lemon juice and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat.  Stir continuously until sugar is dissolved, and then continue cooking for another 3 minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside.  Use a toothpick to poke holes in the tops and sides of the warm loaf and brush with the lemon syrup.  Continue to brush the loaf until all or most of the syrup is added.

To make the glaze, whisk together the powdered sugar and milk and pour over the top of the loaf (after it's completely cooled).  Let the glaze harden before serving.  Eat with coffee.  ;)

rootbeer revelry


This past weekend we took a little stroll in downtown Galena.  Not a good place to go if you're on a diet... chocolate, popcorn, and candy factories galore.  Which is exactly why it's one of my favorite places!  This time, though, I didn't get any fresh kettle corn, or caramel apples, or chocolate goodies.  We went to a new (since the last time I've been there) place called Rootbeer Revelry.

They had shelves full of every kind of root beer possible.  Most of which I've never heard of, but had really fun labels.  Really old root beer that I haven't seen around in a long time.. such as Dog n Suds.... and then they had my absolute favorite... 1919.  Best.  Rootbeer.  Ever.

Clara was eyeballing our root beer floats.  If anyone has any type of food, you are her new best friend.  We couldn't help but give her a little taste of the ice cream!

And this is her happy face after she had a taste.

I'm sure that's what my face looked like too.  This family loves rootbeer floats!

And then on our way out.. I saw this sign at a little store front...... and I think it was a 'sign' that, yes, I do need more yarn.  ;)  Lots of work going on these days at my etsy shop (FB page).

The Best (Texas) Chocolate Sheet Cake {recipe}


I'm a chocolate lover, and always will be.  Although I believe in eating healthy, homemade, and fresh foods.. I will never be one of those people who go on a diet.  I love my sweets entirely too much.  And by eating healthy and getting exercise (aka chasing my daughter around), I feel like I can afford to enjoy my chocolate cravings.

I made this sheet cake for a 4th of July family get together.  It was obviously nothing short of delicious.  This just might be my new favorite cake.  I had to stop people from diggin' in so I could snap a quick shot of it..

Texas Chocolate Sheet Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 4 heaping tablespoons unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 2 sticks butter
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • ½ cup buttermilk (Or use this tip to make a buttermilk substitute: Place 1/2 Tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice in a liquid measuring cup. Add enough regular milk to bring the liquid up to the 1/2 cup line. Let stand for 5 minutes, then use in the recipe.)
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 1 3/4 sticks butter
  • 4 heaping Tablespoons unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 6 Tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 pound (minus 1/2 cup) powdered sugar (about 3 to 3 1/4 cups)

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt.

Melt butter in a saucepan and add cocoa. Stir together. Add boiling water, allow mixture to boil for 30 seconds, then turn off heat. Pour over flour mixture, and stir lightly to cool.

In a measuring cup, pour the buttermilk and add beaten eggs, baking soda, and vanilla. Stir buttermilk mixture into butter/chocolate mixture. Pour into (lightly greased) 13 x 18″ sheet cake pan and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes (if using a 10 x 15″ jelly roll pan, you may need to bake 22 to 23 minutes).

While cake is baking, make the icing. Melt butter in a saucepan. Add cocoa, stir to combine, then turn off heat. Add the milk, vanilla, and powdered sugar. Stir together. Pour over warm cake.  If you made your cake in a 13 x 18″ pan, pour on all the frosting - you may need to spread it a little so it covers the entire cake; if your cake is in a 10 x 15″ pan, just pour enough frosting on to cover the surface of the cake without going over the edges of the pan. You’ll probably have about 1/2 to 2/3 cup of frosting left over (good for eating by the spoonful with a glass of milk... just sayin').

You can let the frosting cool and set before cutting into squares if you want, or cut into squares while it’s still warm and dig in! The frosting will start setting in about a half hour, but it needs between 1 and 2 hours to set more firmly; at 2 hours, it should be nice and firm.

I put little raspberries on the top of each square.. just to add a little color to my 4th of July dessert!  ;)

Want to print out the recipe?  Here is the printable version.

her first pony (tail)


I love summer time.  The sun, warmth, Iowa sweet corn & BLT's... bubbles, pony tails, and splashing in the pool.  Just the other day, we had all of these things..

And some pretty painted piggies...

We put in Clara's very first pony tail.  It makes her look so much older.  :')  She wasn't too sure about it at first, but she tolerates it a lot better than headbands (she is not a fan).

And she helped Nana shuck some corn.  We love us some sweet corn around here.. Iowa has some of the best, you know.  :)  I've waited to years to taste this again.

sweet Georgia peaches!


Have you ever gotten really excited over something that everyone else probably think is really silly to excited over?  I tend to get excited over really small things... and today that thing was about a big ol' box of peaches.. not just any peaches.. fresh GEORGIA peaches.  The best in the country.  Twenty five pounds of juicy goodness.

Every year a big refrigerated semi makes a trek up to the midwest to deliver these pretty little things to various cities.  I waited in the Menards parking lot... in 107 degree heat index.. for 30 minutes.  Completely worth it.

We have a lot of plans for these.  Pies, drinks (maragaritas, anyone?), cobbler, a good snack for Clara... but one of my favorite ways to eat them?  Just sliced up over some good vanilla ice cream.  And by good vanilla ice cream, I mean Blue Bunny Vanilla Bean.

tomato basil squares {recipe}


 We also had these for Clara's birthday party.  My mom had the recipe, and all of my mom's recipes are good of course, so I figured we couldn't go wrong.  ;)  But seriously, I think we've had this twice since Clara's birthday 2 weeks ago.  It's good.. a keeper.  Pair it with a little salad and it makes for a good, lighter dinner.

I think the key to this is juicy tomatoes.. and fresh basil.  My mom grows her own, so she was able to just go out back and pick some for me.. yum mmmm.

This definitely has to be one of my new favorite recipes.

Tomato-Basil Squares
recipe from Pampered Chef

  •  homemade pizza crust or 1 package (10 oz) refrigerated pizza crust
  • 2 cups (8 oz) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1/4 cup (1 oz) grated fresh parmesan cheese
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed
  • 4 tomatoes, sliced

Preheat oven to 375 F.  Roll pizza crust out onto a rectangle stone.  Once the oven is preheated, pre-bake your crust for just a few minutes (not so it's completely baked, but just so it's a little bit firm - to give the bottom a little more crisp).  Take the crust out and sprinkle with 1 cup of the  mozzarella cheese; set aside.

In a small bowl, combine parmesan cheese, remaining mozzarella cheese, mayo, basil, and garlic.  Mix well.

Slice tomatoes and arrange evenly over the crust.  Scoop the cheese mixture over the tomatoes, spread evenly.  Bake 15-20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.  Cut into squares and serve warm.

ENJOY.  I love the fresh taste of the tomatoes and basil.. with the parmesan cheese (my favorite).  

Want to print out this recipe?  Here is the printable version.

a little fro-yo in my life


Everyone needs a little fro-yo in their life.. aka.. frozen yogurt.  It seems that these little self-serve yogurt bars are popping up all over the place these days.  The first time I went to one was when we were visiting family down south.. my sister-in-laws and I went for a little girls day out in Memphis.  It was delicious, and I love anything that I can put my own toppings on.

Well, one opened in our town and I told my dad I would take him out for Father's Day.  So we went last Friday, and my little cousin came with too.  I really wish I would have gotten a 'before' picture of his yogurt concoction, but he ate it too fast.  ;)

I had white chocolate & chocolate frozen yogurt, with some heath bits and peanuts.  Topped with chocolate syrup, white chocolate syrup, and caramel syrup (yes, all three).  Oh, and a cherry.  :)

Joshua's creation consisted of white chocolate and strawberry fro-yo.. his toppings were gummy bears, m&ms, sprinkles, some jelly looking things, a couple sour worms... maybe a little kit-kat.  He was very creative.

Clara enjoyed the strawberry fro-yo.

 Clara was definitely dressed for the occasion.  She had little cherries on her dress, and the place was called Cherry Berry.  ;)

It was a fun night up.. and certainly a nice little change of scenery!