life around these parts

Last night we enjoyed our first s'mores of the season

complete with a bit of singing 'round the fire.

Our strawberry patch is looking quite promising!

It looks like we're ready for June around here.

And just this morning, one our painted ladies emerged from her chrysalis.

The kids are watching intently to see the amazing changes that are taking place within our live butterfly garden.


dinner with friends

I just found this picture and realized that I meant to post it months ago!

A few months ago, our family hosted an Italian dinner night with dear friends.

Each of us contributed something...

antipasto salad

bread sticks


tiramisu (my ultimate weakness)

sparkling Italian soda

and drippy candles.


stuffed french toast

This recipe for stuffed French toast (sent to me by the same friend who makes yummy pound cake) is oh-so-good!

I made up several little French toast "sandwiches," put them in the freezer over night, and then baked them on a well-buttered cookie sheet for about 30 minutes the next day.


a happy little party

Several months ago, I spotted tissue paper pom-pom kits in the craft section at Wal-Mart.

I wanted to make a few to decorate for a birthday party, but our Wal-Mart has scaled down its craft section and, sadly, they were all gone.

I searched online and found these super easy instructions to make them.

Seeing them suspended from my kitchen ceiling still makes me happy!

This also makes me happy...

A dear friend brought all of the ingredients to make yummy strawberry trifle.

The pound cake was made from scratch.

And it was real pound cake--she used a whole pound of butter. :)


des moines and back

white chocolate raspberry, mint chocolate and German chocolate cheesecake bites

Last month I was able to fly out to Des Moines, Iowa, to visit a friend from college.

Eating, shopping, napping, talking with an old friend--what could be better?

One day we stopped by her cousin's fabulous restaurant called flarah's.

I enjoyed quiche and a wonderful chocolate blueberry salad for lunch--it was amazing!

If you're ever in the Des Moines area you must stop by for a delicious bite to eat.