Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Keep it simple....:)

A few weeks back this guy celebrated his 83rd birthday:) Meet Norm, my hubby's dad. Yep, he's as sweet as he looks:) I thought I'd have him over for a little impromptu dinner the night of his bday:) Only, I didn't reeally think it thru. See, I'm the queen of procrastination and the queen of wanting things to be perfect. Soooo at about 3:00 on the day of said dinner, I started to panic. Wha? What? And then I stopped and took a deep breath and said, Seriously Dorie? NO ONE CARES ABOUT THE RIDICULOUS DETAILS!! It's true. So often times I get worked up about silly little things that I feel like I lose focus on what really matters. The time spent together- THAT'S what matters:) (okay, and the WINE.)

So I set my table outside with what I had. The vintage tablecloth was Norm's mothers:) How lucky I am to have some of her linens!

I took a tag, wrote a message on it, used a fork for a holder and...done:)

I love to mix my really good stuff with inexpensive things to give it that casual look:)

-the plates are Match, the glasses are Reidel.

-the flatware was a TJ Maxx clearance and the glasses are Kerr jelly jars.

-the fab cloth napkins were a bday gift from my sis in law:) from Domestic Bliss:)

And just to keep it real, I'll show you the beast I have to fight off my patio all day-everyday!

She leaves me little gifts like this, and I don't like it:( Moving right along.....

I served my favorite go to meal. Pasta with Prosciutto and Peas. It's super quick and easy and really tasty:) I used leftover cooked chicken instead of the prosciutto, cause that's what I had!

A simple salad of arugula and pine nuts dressed with olive oil and sea salt- perfect:)

And the birthday cake? I stopped off at Fresh and Easy and picked up this tiny little cheesecake. I sliced some strawberries and sprinkled them with a little sugar and let them sit in the fridge for a while so they create that yummy strawberry syrupy stuff:)

Poured that over the top and added a sprig of mint- and there you have it:)

And yes, I made him blow that candle out twice cause I didn't get a pic the first time!

I'm writing all this to say, that it really is all about relationships. And people. And not sweating the small stuff. And not missing an opportunity to make someone happy. And taking the time to enjoy those around you. No matter what:)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Kale and Kayola...:)

OK, so you all know of my love for my local Farmer's Market. It takes place here in Mesa on Friday mornings, and it's one of my favorite things. I know, I need to get out more:) I just love the idea of supporting our local farmers and eating fresh and local. My daughter LOVES her some Kale chips, so last Friday I bought some bunches of Kale and made her some:)

Seriously folks, it's embarrassingly easy to make these! You'll need 3 items- kale, olive oil and sea salt.

Cut the leaves off the hard stems into bite size pieces. Drizzle with olive oil,

Sprinkle with sea salt,

and spread on a parchment lined sheet pan.

Put into the oven at 350 for about 15-20 min or until the edges are golden. I do not however recommend you sit down and watch your dvr'd episodes of Kitchen Nightmares while waiting. This will result in a little over browned kale chips:( Ugh Gordon!!

If your really feeling your inner Martha (or just need a cute blog pic) you can serve it up in a brown bag with a sweet little stamped saying on it:) And there you go. Kale chips. Super tasty and super good for you:) You can eat em up guilt free!!

Orrrrr- If you're like me and you love a little guilty pleasure, you could dive into these AMAZING cinnamon rolls made by a sweet blog follower of mine:)

Meet Kayola Skinner. She showed up at my doorstep one evening with these lovelies. Still WARM!! It was the sweetest thing! Literally. I had never met her before, she just reads my silly little blog and thought she'd stop by with her gift of handmade yumminess for me. We chatted about a lot of things and found we had so much in common. I loved how she came to my door a stranger and left a friend:) What a sweet woman that Kayola!

So if you're local, and have a hankering for the yummiest in sweet, buttery, cinnamon goodness- you have to give Kayola a jingle. Yep, she hand makes these scrumptious delights and sells them for $20 a dozen, or $25 a dozen with nuts. Order up!!

Trust me, you'll be glad you did :)

Kayola's Fat and Sassy Buns 480-643-0089 email: pkfamdmly@aol.com

Or check out her blog:)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Summer's a comin.....:(

So this was the lovely sight I took in this morning as I was having my cup of coffee. Why do I insist on believing I can keep a hydrangea alive here in AZ?? UGH!! I adore these flowers. But sadly, the Arizona heat is on my doorstep:( and looking at these sad flowers is just another reminder. **ooh and I just remembered that I need to start growing out my fingernails, you know- so I can drive with them this summer:( anyway....
After work I stopped by my local Trader Joe's for a few things for din. OF COURSE the flowers are the first things you see when you step in the door. Genius move TJ's!! Fresh flowers are one of my many weaknesses. I mean leaving TJ's without flowers is like shopping at Target without eating popcorn, or going to Costco without spending $100!

Hello lovelies!!

And welcome to my kitchen. Where you will be enjoying the next week or so before the AZ inferno takes you oh so prematurely from me:( and at which time I will most likely (sniff sniff) be replacing you with a succulent:(

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

My blog b**tch.... :)

Yep, that's what my hubby told me he was. To my face. Wha? What? Really?? Ok, so it's partly true. It's just that this guy can make ANYTHING out of ANYTHING !!! And besides being completely amazing for our house, it just so happens to make fantastic blog material:) Case in point....
A few Saturday's back, he decided to tackle this arbor that we had been talking about. So I'm thinking, cool- a couple 2x4's, some nails and...done! Au contraire mon frere!! There was even concrete involved! Who knew?

You seriously have no idea how exhausting watching him work can be!! Juuuust Kidding!!! Someone had to take advantage of this photo op, you know- for the blog!! :)

Yeah, little bully kinda watched the backs of his eyelids the entire time:)

The result? True craftsmanship. I mean seriously. He's a wonder that man 'o mine!!

So hubby? I thank you, and this little bloggy thanks you. For without you.....geez, that's a lot of responsibility for a little bully!!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


We have a winner!! The winner of the most fantastic of all cutting boards is......

Twiggy&goose! Email me your address and I'll spend my life savings shipping you your sweet treat!!

This is my mama. Zoraida, or Ida, or Grandma Sweets or just Sweets. My brother started calling her that in college and it just sorta stuck. She is the mother of 6 beautiful (as I've heard her say all my life) kids. I love so many things about my mom, but one thing in particular stands out for me. This woman can cook like no other, and will. For anyone. Anytime. She calls all us kids and offers to either cook us dinner at our house or at hers, all the time. Yes, she still spoils her babies!

This is what her house looked like this past Sunday. It was just a couple of her friends, my brothers family, and the hubby and I. I LOVE how she always sets her table. She has my whole life. Tablecloth and all. I don't know that she owns any paper plates!

She uses her silver:)

Just some of her many dishes:) Seeee, THAT'S where my dish disease came from!!

Her napkin drawer'S!

As you notice in the table pic, my mom doesn't have a centerpiece. She never does. I guess because there needs to be room for all the FOOD! My mom NEVER runs a short ship!!


The yummiest carrots:)

Cabbage salad:) and her yummy iced tea:)

Thank you mom for so many things. Like-

Thank you for not freaking out when I didn't brush my hair my entire 4th grade year! (STILL hate brushing my hair)

Thank you for laughing hysterically and telling me I was "so dumb" after I got busted for shoplifting in Dillard's in 8th grade!(seriously the stupidist thing I did ever!)

Thank you for rolling your eyes when I got a C in Spanish:( Ay! Que horror!!

Mostly? Thank you for just letting me....be me:)

A Very Happy Mother's Day:)