If there is one must-have on my menu for an Oscars viewing party (or really, just for sitting at home and watching the red carpet alone in my jammies) it’s a fabulous cocktail. I’m a fan of a batch cocktail like a punch so you can prep everything in a pitcher and bring it with your snacks to have in front of the tv — no running into the kitchen for refills during commercial breaks! This punch recipe was actually what I served at Jane’s birthday party and it was a hit with my friends. It’s since been rebranded from the Curious George-themed “georgie juice for moms” to an Oscars-appropriate: Ruby Red Carpet Champagne Punch. The flavors are the same though: tart grapefruit juice, orange notes from Aperol, and a splash of red from the grenadine. The whole thing is topped off with a bottle of champagne for that bubbly touch you need to watch the most star-studded night of television — get the recipe below to make your own batch!  read more

Recently I made a big batch of roasted chickpeas using this peppery new seasoning I got for my birthday and served them on top of a chicken and rice dish. Since then I’ve been dreaming up ways to add them to other meals. My newfound love for these spicy little legumes inspired a pretty appetizer idea that is a perfect addition to my Oscars viewing party menu: Roasted Chickpea and Hummus Cups.  read more

Puff pastry has to be my all-time favorite entertaining secret! I always keep some in the freezer and you can pull it out to make an endless combination of easy desserts, brunch treats, and appetizers. I was brainstorming some new appetizers to make for the Oscars next Sunday night, and I always love to include a puff pastry snack (because you know all of those skinny actresses LOVE buttery, flaky pastry dough — ha!). This puff pastry creation has just 5 ingredients: asparagus, prosciutto, black pepper, and an egg wash over that buttery, rich dough. Check your frozen puff pastry’s ingredients for real butter and you’ll know it’s the good stuff, it makes a huge difference when you bake these these savory little snacks off for your celebration. Get the full recipe below:  read more

One of my favorite occasions of the year is coming up next weekend: The Oscars! It’s the best excuse to snuggle up on the couch, live-tweet my expert opinions about ball gowns and celebrity hairstyles while wearing a sweatshirt and yoga pants, and of course: eating special on-theme snacks! I had so much fun sharing my Valentine’s Day Grazing Board, that I thought I’d create another one full of movie-theater sweets and red carpet themed snacks. I’ll be accepting my Academy Award for Best Supporting Snack Tray any time now, don’t you think? read more

Oh boy guys, I’ve had this week on my calendar for almost a year now! This week marked my TENTH anniversary of starting this little ‘ol blog. I’ve sat down to write about a dozen variations of blog posts to commemorate the occasion, but funny enough, I’ve bene at a loss for words to explain it. Partly because it feels like any other week — after a decade of working on this site, it’s one of the most steady parts of my routine and life. And partly because it also feels SO monumental. read more

We are just about a week away from Valentine’s Day and I have all of the sweet, heart-shaped, pink and red, love-dovey inspiration to share today! My husband and I don’t generally make a big deal out of Valentine’s Day. We usually exchange cards, and use it as an excuse to abandon healthy-eating for the night and replace our usual meal-plan with something a bit more delicious. The idea I wanted to share today definitely falls into the delicious category: a Valentine’s Day grazing board. read more

My goal of sharing more Instant Pot recipes this year is going well (you can check out a few more in my Instant Pot recipe collection) and I have one more to add to the line-up: Green Chili Beef Tacos! Tacos are the most-requested dinner in our household, and even more so since we got a tortilla-maker kit for Christmas (they’re so delicious). I’m constantly brainstorming recipes that I can quickly throw in the Instant Pot and then walk away from until it’s time to put dinner on the table — these easy green chili tacos are one of those dishes. read more

I feel like January has been a bit of a struggle for just about everyone I know. It can be hard to find your rhythm again after the holidays and the quiet days around the New Year. On top of that, I find that parenting toddlers during cold winter weather is about 100x harder than warmer months – we have been cooped up, and I’ve just about run out of play-doh. By the time bedtime rolls around I’m ready for a vacation. Tropical getaways aren’t in the cards for me this week, so my solution for resetting is a little bit of hygee and indulgence after she goes to bed. I’ve been curling up with a good book under a warm fluffy blanket and having a little sweet treat to take the edge off a crazy day. My friends at TruMoo just shared their new After Dark line with me and it’s been a perfect fix for my sweet-tooth while I flip through my latest chick-lit novel.  read more

I have a nagging resolution that I have made for the past few years and never really did anything about: updating my make-up routine. I’m slightly embarrassed to say my make-up bag contents are nearly identical today (at 34 years old) to what I was using in college. Those products that I’ve probably been using for the better part of a decade are about as simple as they get, and I keep telling myself that I’m going give my routine a revamp to feel more age-appropriate.  My friend Amanda is a talented make-up artist and esthetician, and she offered to give me a little make-up therapy session to finally tackle this resolution of finding a refreshed make-up routine. I learned SO much from our lesson that I had to share her wealth of tricks, tips and favorite products here – it was too good not to share! read more

I am recovering from the bonanza of calories that came with testing my Super Bowl recipes and have this meal in mind for a healthy-option to get me back on track! One-pan meals have so much appeal to me for weeknight dinners because I know the second we finish eating it’s a race to get the kitchen cleaned up, and start Jane’s bedtime routine. Anything that I can do to cut down on the clean up process is a huge win. I’m also a fan of these sheet pan type meals because they use up leftover vegetables from other recipes. A half an onion, a few pieces of broccoli – whatever I have in the veggie-drawer can get tossed on the pan and roasted with seasoning for tons of flavor that elevates the produce leftovers. read more