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Monday, May 1, 2017

BLT Salad with a Creamy Lemon Chive Dressing

Summertime means long days at the beach, kids home from school, and meals made from fresh ingredients that are most likely cooked on the grill.  
One of my favorite things to do in the Summer is host our friends and family for a cookout (or BBQ if you're from down south)! Nothing says Summer more than gathering around the fire pit, hot dogs and hamburgers on the grill, and a drink to cool you off after a long day in the sun!

One of my favorite new recipes is this amazing Creamy Lemon Chive Dressing.  We stopped buying bottled dressings years ago and the recipe goes amazing with my version of a BLT salad!

I've added a special twist with Young Living's Lemon Vitality Essential Oil.  It really adds a wonderful depth and brightness of flavor to the dressing!*  

Check out these facts about Lemon Essential Oil
  • Can be substituted in any recipe that calls for lemon juice, zest, or extract.
  • Adds a zesty flavor with just 1-2 drops!
  • Contains the naturally occurring constituent d-limonene.
  • Aids in digestion.

A powerful punch in such a small bottle! 

*Be sure to store your dressing in a glass jar or bottle.

yield: 4-6 servingsprint recipe

BLT Salad with a Creamy Lemon Chive Dressing

Ready to kick bottled salad dressing to the curb? Give this Creamy Lemon Chive Dressing a whirl for your next weekend BBQ. This twist on the typical BLT is sure to please at any outdoor gathering!


BLT Salad
  • 6-8 slices bacon, cooked
  • 1 head lettuce, chopped
  • 3 large ripe tomatoes, cut into wedges or 1 container of cherry tomatoes
  • 1 baguette, sliced and toasted
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup fresh chives, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1-2 Tbsp. milk, optional
  • 2-4 drops Lemon Vitality Essential Oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  1. On a platter, arrange lettuce, tomatoes, bread slices, and bacon.
  2. In a small glass bowl, combine dressing ingredients. Adding milk to desired consistency. Season to taste, then drizzle over salad. Sprinkle with additional chopped fresh chives and serve.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Want more recipes?

Check out these amazing recipes for your next BBQ and join me tonight @ 9pm EST for another live event with other top bloggers!  
We'll be sharing our favorite cookout recipes with Young Living Essential Oils!
I hope to see you there!

Keep your cookout annoyance free with this amazing recipe!

Citronella Candles from Practically Functional

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Master Bedroom Mini Makeover

I'm calling this reveal a "mini" makeover because we've made some big changes to the space but still have a few more to go.  It's amazing how a fresh coat of paint can really change the feel of a room along with just some small decor changes

Before we see what it looks like now, let's take a look at what it looked like when we bought the house (seller's furniture in photo):


Can we say "yellow"?  We affectionately called it Big Bird yellow because it was just that bright.  About 5 other rooms in the house were yellow when we moved in, but this was the brightest. Not exactly calming for a room where I spend most of my time trying to sleep!

After 4 years of living with it, it was finally time for it to go.  And I couldn't be happier with the result!!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Chocolate Toffee Matzo "Crack"

Though, I am not Jewish, Matzo crackers have always been a staple in my home every Passover/Easter season. There is something about the dry, unsalted cracker that I absolutely love! Though they come in a lightly salted version, my husband thinks I'm nuts because I get the whole-wheat, unsalted version and will snack on them before bedtime. Nommmm...

I must admit, I had never even considered turning the crackers into a dessert until I was scouring Pinterest and came across a similar recipe.  Apparently, Matzo "Crack" is a did I not know this?!! I've had the version made with graham crackers, but Matzo seems genius to me!

Thin, crisp crackers, coated in caramel toffee and dark chocolate...yes, please!  

print recipe

Chocolate Toffee Matzo Crack

prep time: cook time: total time:
A simply sweet dessert perfect for your family's Passover Seder!


  • 4-5 matzo crackers (unsalted)
  • 2 sticks butter
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1-12 oz. bag chocolate chips
  • 1/2-1 cup pecans, chopped
  • sea salt, optional


  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment or lightly greased aluminum foil. Cover baking sheet with matzos, breaking them apart, if necessary.
  2. Combine butter and brown sugar in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly. Once boiling, continue to cook and stir for about 10-12 minutes or until mixture reaches 305 degrees.
  3. Carefully pour hot sugar mixture over top the crackers, spreading to cover. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top and place in over for 2-4 minutes, until chocolate gets shiny and slightly melts. Remove from oven and spread over top. Sprinkle with sea salt and chopped pecans.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Vanilla Almond Cake with Vanilla Buttercream & Raspberry Filling

Perfect for parties & holidays!

This past weekend was my mom's birthday! Since they moved about an hour away and with both girls in school, we don't get to see them as frequently as we would like, so we chose to host her and my dad for dinner and cake Saturday evening!  It was a fun evening chatting about life, playing with the kids, and surprising them with my husband's first tattoo (haha, they laughed...*whew*)!

A beautiful cake for any celebration!

I love baking cakes. Though I am not a skilled in any way at decorating cakes, I really enjoy whipping up the batter, slathering it all in frosting, and adding a few extra touches to make it special!

I came upon this recipe in America's Test Kitchen: TV Show Cookbook and it seemed like a simple white cake recipe (my favorite!) that could easily be customized for any occasion!
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A beautiful cake for any celebration!

It's moist, buttery, and simply sweet!

A decadent slice of cake!

yield: 10-12 servingsprint recipe

Vanilla Almond Cake with Vanilla Buttercream & Raspberry Filling

prep time: 15 minutes cook time: 30-35 minutes total time:45-50 minutes
A super moist & buttery cake that is sure to please everyone at the party! Whip this recipe up for your next celebration and customize it with your favorite filling to really impress your guests. It's fool-proof and sure to be your go-to cake recipe!


  • 2 1/4 cup cake flour, plus extra for pans
  • 1 cup whole milk, room temperature
  • 6 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. almond extract
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 tsps. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 12 Tbsps. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 12 pieces and softened
  • 16 Tbsps. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp. milk
  • 1/3 cup seedless raspberry jam


  1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8-or-9 inch round cake pans, then line the bottoms with parchment paper. Whisk the milk, egg whites, and both extracts together in a small bowl.
  2. In a stand mixer, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt together on low speed until combined, about 30 seconds. Increase the speed to medium-low and beat the butter into the flour mixture, one piece at a time, about 30 seconds. Continue to beat the mixture until it resembles moist crumbs, about 1 minute.
  3. Beat in all but 1/2 cup of the milk mixture, then increase the mixer speed to medium and beat until smooth, light, and fluffy, about 1 minute. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly beat in the remaining 1/2 cup milk mixture until the batter looks slightly curdled, about 15 seconds.
  4. Give the batter a final stir with a rubber spatula to make sure it is thoroughly combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared pans, smooth the tops, and lightly tap the pans against the countertop two or three times to settle the batter. Bake the cakes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs attached, 30-35 minutes.
  5. Cool the cakes in the pans for 10 minutes. Run a small knife around the edge of the cakes, then flip them out onto a wire rack. Peel off the parchment paper, flip the cakes right side up, and cool completely before frosting, about 2 hours.
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, confectioners' sugar, vanilla, milk, and salt on low speed until the sugar is moistened, about 30 seconds. Increase the speed to medium high and beat, stopping twice to scrape down the bowl, until creamy and fluffy, about 1 1/2 minutes.
  2. Line the edges of a cake platter with strips of parchment to keep the platter clean while you assemble the cake. Place one cake layer on the platter. Spread 1/2 cup of frosting over the top of the cake then carefully spread the jam on top, then cover with the second cake layer. Spread the remaining frosting evenly over the top and sides of the cake. Remove the parchment strips from the platter before serving.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Pin this recipe for your next celebration or get-together!
What is your favorite type of cake?

Monday, March 13, 2017

DIY Non-Toxic Cleaner Recipes That Actually Work!

Round-up from top bloggers

Spring cleaning is just around the corner at my house. I'm getting set to scrub our windows, siding, freshen our mattresses, carpets, and even the air!  No more closed windows in our home. Yay!

Since finding essential oils, I've discovered a whole new world of natural cleaning.  Not only do they smell great, they work amazingly well...and without all of the harsh chemicals like bleach!

Since I'm always on the hunt for all-natural, DIY recipes that actually work, I've rounded up 5 great recipes that I absolutely love and will quickly replace any chemical cleaners you have lying around your home!

1. How To Clean An Oven Like A Boss from Unskinny Boppy
2. Father's Day Car Care Kit from Shaken Together
3. DIY Tub Scrub from Weeknight Dish
4. Mason Jar Gel Air Freshener from Shaken Together
5. DIY Potty Pods from Weeknight Dish

If you're all about essential oil recipes then I've got you covered:

Handmade Holiday Recipes
If you'd like to replace your toxic cleaners with healthy alternatives and receive your oils each month for FREE, check this out!

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