dinner with five plates: beef brisket with carrots and potatoes


I was paid to create this recipe and write this post by Five Plates.

Something crazy happened here in Utah: we’ve had a whole week of fall—during the first week of fall!! Maybe that doesn’t sound so exceptional to you, but around here, it is. Normally, it’s the middle of October before we see any days in the 60s, and then by Halloween, the kids are wearing their winter coats and we have to run our trick-or treating route fast enough that our hands don’t freeze. I like fall to come in gradually, just like it is this year. So naturally, I’m pretty ecstatic.

Since the weather has gone chilly so early, I’ve already started craving slow cooker recipes with meat, just like this one.

quick summer dinner: spring rolls


I was compensated by Tyson Foods to produce this post.

I’m kind of loving the new look of my blog. It’s a little cleaner, a little lighter, and it was long overdue. Sometimes I think being a little lighter myself is long overdue. I really want to look fabulous this summer. The kids and I have a limitless water park pass right now, which means I’ll be in my bathing suit a lot in the next couple months. And I’d rather that were a pleasant experience for the other water park patrons.

a bit about me, and two simple pizzas


My friend had a little heart to heart with me last week. He said I should share a little bit more of myself in my posts, a little bit more of my story.

So, here goes—just hope he doesn’t mind he kind of is the story . . .

chicken quinoa soup


I need to drum up some serious positive thinking, ‘cuz I just came down with something and right now I feel like a blunt awl is tunneling into the left side of my skull.

Positive thought #1: Good thing I made this chicken soup for the kids last week. They had all taken the week off from school, with their little faces glued to shows like Kickin’ It and Good Luck Charlie, so they could get rid of this fever and sore throat they all had. They never ate (drank, whatever you insist on saying) the soup, so now I still have a big pot of it for me.

Positive thought #2: On Saturday night, when I was watching a movie with some friends, I started aching all over my body and shivering. I knew had caught what my kids had. Oddly enough, I kind of like fevers—they mean I have a provable illness and can take time off and no one will judge me—but the headaches that come with them . . . they’re maddening. (In case you missed the positive thought in there, it was the bit about taking time off.)

Positive thought #3: The people at Muir Glen sent me samples of their amazing tomatoes awhile ago, and I used them for the soup. And I’ll totally be talking about them again soon.

Positive thought #4: I awoke this morning to find my friend Jon shoveling my walkway at 7:15. I have good friends.

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