Home, sweet home! I got back this weekend from an amazing vacation exploring London and parts of England. It was a wonderful trip, full of beautiful weather, tons of sightseeing, and my fair share of eating and drinking! But it’s true what they say, there is no place like home. It’s been a slow start to the week as I dig out of my inbox and ease out of the jet lag fog, but coming back to what finally feels like spring weather has helped with the adjustment. While I play catch up, I thought I’d share a few links and updates below: read more

The number one thing that gets me through winter (and let’s be honest, the very wintry spring we had this year!) is thinking about how gloriously wonderful summer will feel when it finally arrives. I start making a mental bucket list of all of the things I want to do when warm-weather hits, and at the top of my list is usually entertaining outdoors. My friends at Better Homes & Gardens have been getting me extra excited for some al fresco celebrations this summer with their annual Summer Entertaining Guide! It’s chock full of great entertaining tips, cocktail recipes and outdoor decor ideas (oh, and a giveaway for a $250 Crate and Barrel gift card!). Flipping through this inspiring guide got me thinking about a few of my own favorite summer entertaining tips: read more

We have been the biggest fans of the Chicco Bravo travel system since Jane was an infant– the stroller and car seat are probably our most used baby products we’ve had since she’s been born. The brand just launched a new version of this model that has many of the same features – like the quick fold mechanism that is SO key when you’re juggling a squirmy toddler and a bag of groceries in the parking lot – but it’s smaller and lighter. Now that Jane is bigger, we were looking for something a bit more flexible to throw in the car with us for quick errands and weekend trips, so I jumped at the chance when Chicco offered for us to try these new wheels out! read more

Around the time that Jane was born, we noticed how much trash we were creating as a family (bags of diapers will do that!), and we started to make an effort to do more to reduce our impact on the environment. We started buying our dairy products from a local farm that reuses their glass containers, my husband built us a big recycling center in our back hall, and we even started composting our food scraps.  These things are a just start, I know there is a lot more we can do, but our small changes were such easy swaps to be more eco-friendly. I thought that Earth Day would be a great chance to share a few of the items I use to be bit more conscious of my impact on the environment.  read more

Can we all agree on one thing? The absolute best reason to watch the Kentucky Derby is so that you can have an solid reason to mix up an ice cold mint julep! I realized this week that the derby is coming up in a few weeks, and decided to try my hand at mixing up a berry-muddled version of this classic cocktail. The most delicious mint julep I’ve ever tasted was made at the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia — the drink was brimming with crushed ice, fresh mint leaves, and a pretty dusting of powdered sugar — YUM! I gave the derby staple a slight spin with some muddled mixed berries in the bottom of vintage cut crystal glasses that my mother-in-law just passed down to me, and gave them some Kate-flair with horseshoe drink stirrers too! Scroll down for the full recipe.  read more

Let me let you in on a little blogger secret. When it’s super quiet on this site, it usually means that something good is coming soon! I’ve been busy working away on lots of spring content (you know, that season in between winter and summer where the weather starts to get warmer?) and can’t wait to share all of it. I’ve also been working on some behind the scenes projects for my cookbook– lining up some fun events for the fall and working on some website changes – it’s going to be exciting. We did have a few brief hours of sunshine and warmth yesterday and I’m happy to report I ignored about a dozen important items on my to do list and took Jane to the playground. We ran around in circles, picked daffodils, played with bubbles and sidewalk chalk, and it was bliss. Here’s hoping for a few more days like that in our future, and in the meantime, here is some weekend reading for you! read more

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The weather seems to be inching farther and farther away from a never-ending winter, and closer each day to the promise of summer parties and al fresco dining! Eating dinner outdoors has to be the number one warm-weather activity I look forward to as the seasons change. Living so close to the ocean, combined with my affinity for all things nautical and preppy, I more often than not like to give my outdoor table a festive sea-inspired spin when I’m hosting guests. read more

Wow! The last two days have been an absolute blur of excitement and energy after I finally got to share the big news about my upcoming entertaining cookbook! I have been in complete awe of all of the love and comments and calls and texts that came pouring in after I got to share this news. The book writing process can be a bit of an emotional roller coaster, and I’m happy to say that I’m riding the high of the coaster right now. If you haven’t gotten a chance to yet, you can check out more of the book on Amazon and Barnes & Noble where it’s available for pre-order, and read a bit more about how this all came to be in my blog post sharing the news. After you do that, keep on reading for a few more fun links from the week: read more

One of my more well-known personality traits is my complete inability to keep a secret. I really can’t help it, when I hear good news I want to shout it from the rooftops! Which is why it’s a giant surprise that I have been keeping this major secret under wraps for months. The day is finally here that I can tell you the BIG NEWS! I wrote a book! I’ll type it one more time because I honestly can’t believe it myself: I wrote a book! It’s an entertaining cookbook called New England Invite: Fresh Feasts to Savor the Seasons and it will be published this fall – October 2018! read more

I realized this weekend, as I was making a double batch of mac and cheese to bring Easter dinner, that I’ve never shared my go-to classic recipe for this cheesy, family favorite dish. It’s one of those dishes that I make so often (for nearly every holiday occasion) that I’ve never actually taken the time to measure everything out and write it down — until now! A combination of rich gruyere cheese, sharp cheddar, and savory parmesan cheese make the perfect coating for al dente pasta. read more