Jalapeno Jack and Cheddar Macaroni and Cheese Recipe

Do you have a recipe that you are known for?  You know…a recipe that others consider ‘yours’.  Maybe one that’s requested by others for family and friend gatherings, with such expressions as, “Oh, can you make and bring your ___________?”. 
My mother was known for her baked beans.  Some even called them “Jean’s Beans”.  My husband is already known for his homemade pizza; which is actually his family’s recipe, handed down.

I wondered for some years if I would ever have a recipe others thought of as ‘mine’, until I did. My Jalapeno Jack and Cheddar Macaroni and Cheese!  Granted, I think it might only be my own little family here who knows of and requests my fabulous macaroni and cheese but hey….we all start small.… Read More

Cherry Tomato and Cucumber Summer Salad

 When it is summertime, I want meals that are as simple and quick to make as possible. If we don’t have a tight schedule that day, then we’ve spent the day involved in some project or other. Especially on weekends, when Michael is home too. Usually it’s been it’s blazing hot out all day too, being summertime and all. And let’s face it, the heat and humidity really has a way of draining anyone’s energy and ambition that much more. 

That’s exactly how I happened to come up with this simplest of salads. Dinner was not even planned, never mind started!  Michael threw some steaks on the grill, and I just grabbed the vegetables we brought in from the garden that day, off of the counter, and threw together a cold side dish.… Read More

Oven Cooked Corn on the Cob – Perfect!

 For the 20+ years Michael and I have been together, we have been trying to figure out how to cook corn-on-the-darn-cob, so it comes out just right.  Sometimes it has come out really good, but most times it hasn’t.  It’s just a gamble. We have tried cooking it a few different ways; over the fire with wet husks, steamed, and boiled.  The fire method corn came out amazing the first time, and not as much the second.  The steamed method we only did once, because we didn’t like how it came out. More times than not, we have boiled it.  For us, perfectly cooked corn is- when the kernels are popping right off the cob as you eat it.… Read More

Striped Cucumber Salad


It’s a wonder, that our children have not turned into cucumbers, this summer. They love them, and our gardens have been so generous with them, that the kids have happily eaten them many days for lunch, dinner, and sometimes even as a snack.  They’ve had them as spears, sliced the long way and added to their tomato sandwiches, chopped up in a garden salad, and as this Cucumber Salad, which we are sharing with you today.

We know. It’s not the most inventive recipe, if we can even call it that. The ‘recipe’ is actually more about the dressing it’s in.  It’s one that I imagine has been around a long time, as my mother used to make it while I was growing up.  Recently we were at our friend’s house, getting our families together, and they made us the most de-li-cious dinner.  Part of that meal was a simple romaine salad with sliced fresh strawberries, and a dressing very similar to this one.Read More

7 Layer Salad, with Sides – Summer Light & Just Right

If you live in a climate where summers can be hot & humid, than you probably have days like me when you can’t even think of cooking dinner, in a hot kitchen.  You’re looking for a meal that is cool, light, and delicious.  We probably all have our regular stand-bys, but I just discovered a new favorite, and I’m here to share it with you!

One of the best parts of having link-up party on Tuesdays, has not only been the simple home decor or craft ideas, but the recipes shared!  This ‘7 Layer Salad’ was a link-up, and I thought it was so enticing, we made it right away, and then featured it!Read More

Bruschetta (Bread Topping)

Here’s another delicious little something, to make with some of those fresh summer tomatoes!


Bruschetta topping on toasted bread, is a perfect side to a nice salad (as shown here), or an appetizer for luncheons or cocktail parties. (Well, I’ve heard.  I haven’t been to a cocktail party in…..well, I actually can’t think of a time I have ever been to one, come to think of it. Or, maybe I’m not sure what one is.  But I know what bruschetta is!)

‘Bruschetta’ is an Italian word (Tuscany, to be exact), that means to ‘toast or burn’.  I prefer to toast my bruschetta.  ; )  There are many variations that can be made to this recipe, so don’t be afraid to experiment on your own!  That’s generally what I did when I made this bruschetta this evening a couple of weeks ago.Read More

Scallops and Grilled Zucchini

Here’s something you may or may not know about me.

I am not a mother that takes some time for herself now and then. I don’t go away, or even take a day, for myself, here and there. Most times, I don’t even just go shopping, without taking some or all of the kids with me. I just don’t care to be away from my kids. I like their company. I understand some mothers do like to go away, or take a break from their kids now and them. I’m betting that is normal, and I know there is nothing wrong with that.Read More

Waldorf Salad, Anyone?

You may or may not have heard of Waldorf Salad.  My mother made it all of the time growing up, and I always thought it was a rather odd concoction. But I loved it! So did my brothers and sister, as much as I recall. And now, my kids love it too.  Big hit. So simple.  No measuring really needed.


Participating ingredients:  apples, walnuts, raisins, mayonaisse.

How much you use of any of it, is a preference, and all in consideration of how much you are making, and so how many apples you use.  We used 4 apples and fed 7+ (Some had seconds.)


So chop up some walnuts.  (We were lucky to finally find walnuts not possibly contaminated by peanuts processed in the same manufacturing facility.)


We have this handy chopper.  Can’t say it chops very consistently sized pieces though.… Read More

A Perfect Summer Dinner

We had one of the best dinners of the season this past Saturday night, and for the most part, we can thank one man:


In The Big Picture section, we recently posted our trip the the Farmer’s Market this past Saturday morning, and our stop at Walter’s Specialty Foods stand.  That’s ‘the man’ behind the table there….Philemon Walters.  Phil sells a fine line of specialty items that can really put the magic in your cooking!   I told you all that we bought 3 things from Phil, and I’m about to tell you about 2 of them in this post!


Caribbean Spice Rub.  We’ve tried to make rubs ourselves, but they were always a little….lacking.… Read More