I didn’t like banana pudding. Most times I had tried it, there was this overwhelming fake banana flavor that I just hated. It reminded me of those banana flavored witches’ brooms that we got in our trick or treating bags as a kid. So gross. I was hosting Life Group at our home and one of the couples brought my least favorite dessert to share. Blech. But, I grew up in a home where I had to taste everything, even if I didn’t like it. So I did and I was shocked! It was delicious! I got the recipe that night and I’ve been making it ever since, to rave reviews. So here’s my recipe for the best banana pudding you’ve ever eaten!
There are certain things that I’ve been eating since childhood. They are recipes that were simple for my mom to whip up and made plenty for her family of 7. This is one of those family favorites. We call them buttermilk brownies and we are still in love after all these years! One thing my mom always told me was that when I needed something fast that fed a lot of people, this was the thing to make. There are no unusual ingredients, so I usually have everything in the house all the time. It only uses a pot and a whisk, so you don’t need big kitchen equipment. The biggest factor is that once you’ve done it a few times, it can be made start to finish in 30 min. That’s amazing!
I start by preheating the oven to 375 and getting out the 1/2 sheet pan, then separate the ingredients… butter, water and cocoa powder in the pan. This is my favorite kind of cocoa powder. I love that it’s fair trade, organic and affordable!
After the Easter baskets are raided and the ham is consumed, it’s easy to just veg out for the afternoon. But before you prop your legs up, grab your scraps from the freezer and throw your ham bone in a pot on the stove to make ham stock — the beginning of the most deliciously sweet boston baked beans! This meal isn’t much to look at. It doesn’t photograph well at all! BUT it was a dinner my whole family loved! If you’re a mommy, you know that it’s few and far between to get everyone on board to agree that a meal is amazing. This is one of those.
They say necessity is the mother of invention. That is so true! Four years ago, when my daughter was playing soccer, she could not keep those 4 year old baby flyaways out of her eyes. If I gave her a headband to wear, it slid out of her baby fine hair or it was too tight behind her ears. Slip-not Designs was born out of the desire for my daughter to stop touching her hair in the middle of the soccer field! Since then I have grown my business, mostly through word of mouth. People love the product, so they tell others about it!
There are times when I want to give a simple, inexpensive gift that will taste good days later. My normal carmel corn recipe is amazing, but it’s really only great the day you make it. I had a friend give me this popcorn in an adorable tiny paint can as a gift about 8 years ago and I’ve never forgotten that crunchy, carmel corn. So when my kids asked for crispy carmel corn a few weeks ago, I knew just what to make!
I know some people are completely freaked out about “trash picking”. I guess I view it more like, “I would buy that if they had a garage sale, but they threw it out instead!” Two nights ago, my kids and I drove by a house that was being sold and in front was a plethora of items. You could tell it was a home of an elderly person because the items were not what you would find in Target. They were rough hewn boxes, a sturdy dresser, heavy benches, a tall skinny utility table… For me, they were things I would have bought at their sale for sure! Here’s a peek at some of the items I found that I’ve already put to use.
It’s spring in NE Ohio. The days are getting longer. The sun is shining. The birds are building nests. After a long, hard winter there is great relief that comes in the form of spring. I went out hunting in my garden today and was moving dry, dead leaves to see if I could find green shoots peeking out. Suddenly, I was reminded of how much God speaks to me through my garden.
I love hanging out with newlyweds. They are so cute and in love. I think that people who have been married a while tend to dismiss that desire to serve each other, forgive each other, and be intentional about having a good marriage. They adapt the attitude of “Oh, just wait! Once you experience the real world of marriage, you won’t be like this!” That cynicism and jaded response seems justified. It is absolutely true that the cute couple in early wedded bliss has no way of knowing what is ahead. They haven’t seen the worst of their spouse yet. They haven’t been hurt by the one who is supposed to love them the most. They haven’t been exhausted with young babies, or in the throes of foreclosure on their home. They haven’t experienced the stress of a move or job loss or infertility.
In 2013, my goal was to change over as much of my household and personal care items as possible to natural alternatives. I didn’t want to buy the expensive ones that still use tons of packaging and cramp my budget! I mean low cost alternatives from things I already have around my house. While I made a lot of changes, the one thing I just couldn’t get used to was not having the disposable wipes for the bathrooms and kitchen. I really tried the spray with reusable rags, but it just annoys me for some reason. So, I kept buying the Clorox Green Works ones because they were a more natural alternative. But one day I sat down and went to work to find a reusable option and I found a great one!!!