Brandon turns one!

birthday smash cake
I can’t believe that a year has flown by and now my little baby is one! Brandon has grown and changed so much over the last year. He continues to amaze us with his warm smile, sweet hugs and his sense of wonder and curiosity. We threw a golf themed birthday party for Brandon. It was nice to celebrate this milestone with our friends and family.  A very special thank you to Cathy of Gastronomy Blog for capturing the day through her beautiful photography.  All the photos for this post are from the talented Cathy.

I made a vanilla smash cake for Brandon and topped it with Skip to My Lou’s birthday cake bunting printable. Brandon really enjoyed his cake.  He ate about a third of it.  I brought the rest to work and my co-workers devoured the rest.

timeline collage 2

I made a timeline of Brandon’s 1st year to display.  He’s changed and grown so much in the last twelve months.  This was a pretty easy project.  I printed 5×7 photos at Costco and then matted the photos on white cardstock and then on scrapbook paper.  The hard part was narrowing down the photos for the timeline.birthday timeline

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Twice Baked Potatoes with Philly Chive and Onion Cream Cheese

This  recipe for Twice Baked Potatoes with Philly Chive and Onion Cream Cheese was developed as part of  a social shopper amplification for #CollectiveBias and its advertiser. I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community and I was compensated for this post.  All opinions are mine.

twice baked potato with philly chive & onion cream cheese

Twice baked potatoes are so easy to make especially with help from Philadelphia cream cheese spread. I salt and pepper the potato skins for extra flavor.  The filling is mixed with Philly chive and onion cream cheese spread, sharp cheddar cheese, a tad of butter and a bit of salt.  It’s fluffy and creamy with just the right amount of tang from the cream cheese.  It’s an easy side dish to put together that is full of flavor.  #spreadtheflavor

twice baked potato ingredients

 

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Chocolate Wine Sangria with ChocolatRouge

I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and their client. The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or over.Chocolate Sangria #cheerstochocolate chocolatrouge sweet red wine #shop

chocolate wine sangria #cheerstochocolate #shop

There’s something fun and festive about a pitcher of ruby red sangria.  It’s the perfect drink for a holiday party or entertaining.  Fresh fruit makes sangria fragrant and adds another layer of flavor.  I used ChocolatRouge Sweet Red for this recipe.  The sweet red is a blend of decadent rich chocolate and fine red wine.  As soon as your open the bottle of ChocolatRouge you can smell the intense chocolate aroma.  It’s kinda intoxicating.  The great thing about sangria is that you can easily make it the night before and pull the pitcher out when the guest arrive.  This chocolate wine sangria would be great for a cookie exchange and would keep to the dessert or sweet theme!

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Butter Cookies

chocolate chip cookie butter cookies

This is the first year that I participated in the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap which helped raise $13,778.40 for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer.  It was fun to connect with other bloggers, send and receive cookies and especially being able to contribute to a great cause.

chocolate chip cookie butter cookies

I sent a dozen of these cookies to Karla of The Pie Less Traveled, Mary Ellen of Recipes, Food and Cooking and to Meriem of Culinary Couture.  I hope they enjoyed these delicate chocolate chip cookie butter cookies and that it made it there in one piece.  The cookies are made with Trader Joes’ Speculoos Cookie Butter and laced with chocolate chips and coarse sea salt.  If you haven’t had cookie butter you are missing out on something wonderfully decadent.  Imagine spreading a layer of creamy spread made from gingerbread cookies and crushed biscuits onto a warm piece of toast.   Actually, you don’t even need the toast it’s great straight out of the jar!    The cookie butter has hints of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger and cardamom.  It’s warm, cozy and very addicting.

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Easy Bacon Chicken Mac & Cheese

This post was made possible through the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and their client. All opinions are my own.

Easy Bacon Chicken Mac & Cheese #shop

The holidays are around the corner and it’s such a busy time for many people.  It’s nice to keep a few items on hand to make entertaining or feeding your family a bit easier during this hectic time of year.  Nestle family size frozen  foods make putting hot meals on the table super easy.  With a few mix ins or sides the entrees become a satisfying meal to gather around.  The best part that it takes very little effort or time.

This bacon chicken macaroni and cheese is so easy to make and is such a time saver.   Rotisserie chicken and crispy apple wood bacon add so much favor to the mac and cheese.   A few dashes of hot sauce and fresh tomatoes help balance the richness of the cheese and gives the dish a little kick and pop of freshness.  If you don’t have chicken on hand you can use canned tuna.

Easy Bacon Chicken Mac & Cheese #shop

 

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