• Girl and the Goat Brussels Sprouts

    Asian Brussels Sprouts Girl and the Goat Style

  • homemade red pepper hummus

    Roasted Red Pepper Hummus: an Easy Spontaneous Summer Snack

  • French Apple Tart

    Tarte Aux Pommes

  • tuna tartare

    Homemade Tuna Tartare

  • Chocolate Mouelleux

    Just a Simple Little French Cake: Moelleux au Chocolat

  • strawberry yogurt cake

    Strawberry Yogurt Cake: Great for Breakfast or Afterschool Snacks

  • Chocolate Pudding

    Milk Chocolate Pudding

Chocolate Meringue Cookies and a Hamilton Beach Giveaway

Chocolate Meringue Cookies and a Hamilton Beach Giveaway

Some kitchen appliances get no glory. In my case, the least appreciated appliance in my kitchen closet is my hand mixer. Until recently, mine dated back to my college days. To put things into perspective and make a painful confession, next spring will be my 20 year reunion. High time for a hand mixer upgrade.Continue Reading

Le Pain Quotidien Hits Chicago #LPQCHI

Le Pain Quotidien Hits Chicago #LPQCHI

One of my favorite casual places to go to brunch when I lived in New York City was Le Pain Quotidien. I’d spend hours at their rustic farm tables, dipping butter tartines in steaming bowls of cafe au lait and perfectly cooked soft boiled eggs. A morning at Le Pain Quotidien on Columbus Avenue would transport me backContinue Reading

The Bottle Fairy

The Bottle Fairy

My littlest may only be two and a half, but she has no doubt about her place in the world. She is the center of our family, adored by her big siblings, our undisputed princess, and she recently set our pediatrician straight when she dared to question Sophie’s world order. “Sophie,” said the doctor, “you’re aContinue Reading

Apple Ginger Chutney: Spontaneous Cooking at Its Best

Apple Ginger Chutney: Spontaneous Cooking at Its Best

Chutney is one of those side dishes that can radically transform your meal. A little goes a long way to take your dinner to a whole new level. Grab a couple of ingredients lying around the back of your fridge to make a small batch on Monday, and you’ll be kicking your dinners up toContinue Reading

The Starboard Sea by Amber Dermont

The Starboard Sea by Amber Dermont

As a graduate of a New England boarding school, I was very curious to read the Starboard Sea by Ambert Dermont. This was Dermont’s debut novel. I have a special appetite for boarding school coming of age novels, from a Separate Peace to Prep. I’m hungry to see how the author chooses to depict boarding schoolContinue Reading

So Lucky – Lessons from a Car Crash

So Lucky – Lessons from a Car Crash

The driver pulled out without paying attention, smacking into my boys in their candy red mini. Smacking them so hard that they spun around and plowed into a parked car. Time slows down in an accident. Steve saw him coming, knew the crash was about to happen, but had no time to do anything butContinue Reading

Homemade Bread Machine Pretzel Rolls

Homemade Bread Machine Pretzel Rolls

What are the little items you splurge on at Whole Foods or Trader Joes? The things you throw in your cart that you absolutely didn’t need? For us, it’s soft pretzel rolls. If my kids spot their beautiful dark brown crust, forget it. The rolls have to come home with us. There’s something about the salty sweetContinue Reading

Styling Tips for Moms: an Afternoon with Suze Solari

Styling Tips for Moms: an Afternoon with Suze Solari

Suze Solari is a personal stylist and the co-author of the newly published book, The T-Shirts and Jeans Handbook: Stylish Upgrades for your Daily Uniform. She recently came over to my house with her co-author, Michele Bua, for a styling session and interview. How often do you run out of the house in your workout clothes?Continue Reading

The Terror of Summer

The Terror of Summer

My yard is more mud than riot of color, but it’s trying. My valiant magnolia has exploded into its yearly pink fireworks, encouraging the rest of the garden to follow suit. The azalea joined in this morning with a few fluttering purple petals. Soon the lilacs and the forsythia will follow suit and spring willContinue Reading

the Nespresso Vertuoline Coffee Machine: a Review

the Nespresso Vertuoline Coffee Machine: a Review

Ever since Nespresso launched the Vertuoline, their new line of machines that makes both coffee and espresso, I’d been dying to try one out. This week I received a unit to review and put it through its paces. Since becoming a Nespresso ambassador earlier last year, I’ve served espressos and cappucinos to many guests inContinue Reading

Maple Glazed Salmon with Balsamic Macerated Strawberries

Maple Glazed Salmon with Balsamic Macerated Strawberries

As soon as the last snow melted, baseball/softball season began, and with two kids on teams, our weeknights are jam packed with games and practices. To eat a homemade dinner as a family, I have to plan way ahead of time and put my crock pot on overdrive. On gorgeous spring days, I don’t want slowContinue Reading

the Fault in our Stars – a Modern Day Romance

the Fault in our Stars – a Modern Day Romance

I’ll talk to anyone about books. No perfect stranger at the dentist’s office is safe from my enthusiastic recommendation of the page turner currently keeping me up at night. My 12 year old daughter is a different story. She loves books as much as I do, but is happiest keeping her opinions to herself. WhenContinue Reading

Homemade Chopped Liver with Golden Raisins and Hard Boiled Eggs

Homemade Chopped Liver with Golden Raisins and Hard Boiled Eggs

The lack of love given to chopped liver has always mystified me. How can something so good get so little respect? What is it… CHOPPED LIVER???? Yes, the word LIVAH isn’t the sexiest around and the brown mousse could be more appealing, but you shouldn’t be shallow and judge chopped liver on looks and nameContinue Reading

Vegas: Eating my Way Out of a Dirty Rabbit Hole

Vegas: Eating my Way Out of a Dirty Rabbit Hole

Vegas had always been on my bucket list. It seemed like a place that should be experienced by any reasonable adult. So when Steve and I were looking for a warm place we could fly to from Chicago for our first weekend without the kids in years, Vegas seemed like the perfect choice. Where elseContinue Reading

Sloppy Joes for 60

Sloppy Joes for 60

Cooking for 60, even when a time tested family recipe for Sloppy Joes, is never easy. Fresh from spring break on Monday, with suitcases still full of dirty clothes, I spent the day cooking dinner for 60. I was nervous. I wasn’t throwing an elaborate party, but I knew the crowd would be full ofContinue Reading

Cauliflower Cheddar Apple Soup

Cauliflower Cheddar Apple Soup

If routine is the friend of diet, then spring break is its death knoll. For the last month and a half, I’d been dieting quietly,being a good girl, not eating dessert and enjoying big bowls of vegetable soup for lunch. Pants were fitting better and I was feeling good, no longer cringing at pictures ofContinue Reading

The Secret to Great Homemade Fondue

The Secret to Great Homemade Fondue

The secret to homemade cheese fondue? No fondue pot necessary. Now that we’re officially in spring, it seems funny to be talking about fondue, a winter comfort food. But we fly West for spring break, to hit the slopes with fleeces and sun glasses, returning home proudly with raccoon tans. And when I’m skiing, IContinue Reading

Dauntless Chocolate Cake

Dauntless Chocolate Cake

For the last year or so, Bella and I have been in an informal book club, passing books back and forth, sitting down on a Friday night to watch the movie. For me, it’s a great excuse to read some really fun young adult novels. For her, it’s a chance to be welcomed to adultContinue Reading