I have one last recipe to share from our Taco Date Night party, and of course I saved the cocktail recipe for Friday! These orange mango margaritas are going to be a summer staple, I just know it.  I loosely chopped up 2 small ripe mangoes, and squeezed the juice of two giant oranges into a food processors, and blended the mixture until it was a smooth puree. Then I strained the remaining mango pieces out of the mixture, leaving just the juice behind in a measuring cup. Over ice in a cocktail shaker I mixed 2 ounces of tequila, 2 ounces of the mango-orange juice, a squeeze of a fresh lime, and a half an ounce of Grand Marnier. Shake it up, and strain it into a glass, and serve with a lime wedge. With all of that fruit in there, it’s basically like a healthy smoothie (with tequila), right?a aDSC_0051 aDSC_0054aDSC_0062

To help you recreate this party look at home, Hattie Sparks has a special offer for my readers: 20% OFF your online purchase with the code DOMESTIKATE today through Monday 3/17 – happy shopping!

Please note: I was gifted some of the materials used in this post. All opinions and recipes are my own. 

Summer may be coming to an end, but while the weather is still warm, I’m planning to make the most of it with some picnic-ing! Check out my post over on Wayfair with all of my tips for throwing a picture perfect picnic.

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I spent my Labor Day at the most gorgeous, love-filled weekend wedding up in Maine on a tiny little island. We ate lobsters upon lobsters, and sat around the fire roasting s’mores, and danced our hearts out to big band under the tent. Then after the wedding was over, we spent the rest of the weekend as little reunion of sorts with old friends and had some laughter-filled dinners on the porch of our little rental cottage under the stars (throwing an impromptu dinner party at a rental house called for some crafty touches — like place cards made out of local mussel shells). It was one of those weekends where I don’t mind coming back to reality after a few days off because I’m just so satisfied by all of the fun moments we made.  Summer’s over, but we sent it out with a bang!

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This weekend, I let the Farmer’s Market be the inspiration for Sunday dinner and decided to make whatever looked good — and a pretty little container of colorful tomatoes caught my eye. We scooped some up and then hit the fresh pasta tent for some lemon basil linguine and we were on our way to making a tasty meal. While the water was heating for the pasta, I cooked the tomatoes over high heat with a little EVOO and a tablespoon of butter, salt, and pepper. After the tomatoes cooked down and started to burst, I lowered the temperature and sauteed in three cloves of chopped garlic and a handful of pine nuts. Then after a minute, I added in a quarter of a cup of white wine, and three tablespoons of pesto, plus a few spoonfuls of the pasta water. Then I drained the pasta when it was just about cooked and finished cooking it in the pan with the tomato mixture. We served it with freshly chopped basil leaves and a little Parmesan cheese — perfection!

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This was one of those blissful summer weekends where we had no plans but to kick back and relax. I wanted to go back to The Sinclair in Harvard Square to try the full menu after tasting a few of their bites at our Boston Blogger meet up earlier in the week. Spoiler Alert: It was delicious. I had oysters, a mustard-y steak tartare and some phenomenal mac and cheese (which is a high praise, as I consider myself a bit of a mac and cheese connoisseur!) We sat out on the roof deck and enjoyed the cool, end-of-summer breezes, and tasted just about one of everything off the cocktail menu. As a result, I was moving a little bit slow on Sunday — but still managed to make it to SOWA Market — my first time this summer! — to check out the food trucks and farmer’s market. Guys, I’m just not ready for summer to end yet — I’m soaking in every last bit! 

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Luckily summer is almost over, because this Saturday I am confident it peaked — I had the.best.day.ever.  We went with some friends for a day trip out to Nantucket and had the most perfect summer day. It  was my first time there, so we explored the quaint little cobblestone streets and did some window shopping, we took a ride out to the Cisco Brewery and did a tour and some tastings, and we had a delicious seafood dinner as the sun was setting over the island. At one point we were sitting outside with the sun shining, eating oysters and enjoying some drinks while listening to a live band play at the brewery, and I just felt so overwhelmingly happy — I mean, does it get any better than that? photo5photo2photo3photo4photo

I had one of those weekends where I felt like I was a kid again. My little brother was up visiting to tour some colleges with us, and we had so much fun together just taking in the simple joys of summer. We entertained ourselves with a round of (competitive) mini-golf, indulged in giant bowls of ice cream (black raspberry for me!), played lawn games at a BBQ, and enjoyed a seafood lunch by the water on a warm, sunny day — what’s better than that?

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The summer is halfway over and I have a major item to tackle on my “Kate’s Summer of Fun” bucket list (why yes, I have come up with a theme name for this summer). That item? See an outdoor movie and throw a fabulous picnic while I’m at it. Luckily my neighborhood has a whole movies-in-the-park series this year, I just need to get myself into gear and make it to one. I clipped this great cheese pairings piece from a recent Martha Stewart magazine to use as inspiration for some picnic treats — don’t you just want to try them all?

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I’ve been feeling a little uninspired in the fashion department lately — wearing professional clothes in the heat of summer is a bummer, and when I get home all I want to do is get into the comfiest (and lightest) outfit possible and park myself in front of our AC. So in an effort to muster up a little more effort, I’m going to try to mix just a tiny bit of prints this week. I like the combination of these quintessential preppy patterns: pink gingham and soft postal stripes, with natural tones of cheetah and tortoiseshell. Spicing up accessories is just enough effort for 90 degree weather, right?

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Photo credit: Shorts, Top

I couldn’t bear turning the oven on in our apartment this weekend, (it’s been quite the heat wave) so I had to get creative making a dessert to bring along to a friends BBQ. I picked up a frozen cheesecake at the grocery store and chopped it up into small cubes, and layered the cheesecake bites with fresh blueberries and raspberries in pint-sized mason jars. To make them look a little more special, I used cut up fabric pieces from bandanas to top the lids, and used washi tape to affix mini spoons to the jars. We kept them in the freezer right up until they were ready to be served, and the result was a cool, handheld treat for our day by the pool!
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