French Onion Dip

french onion dipOne of my most favorite new-found recipes….. French Onion Dip.

So I was visiting with my friend on the phone a few months back and somehow we always get stuck talking about food at some point in our conversations.

She mentioned that she had made this dip that was so easy and so delicious.  She described it as “1-2-3 Dip” and I do believe I recall her even mentioning it was like crack.

Ummmm…. yes. It’s like crack. I mean, I love eating it on baguette bread the most. But once it’s gone I will put it in celery sticks and then…. I’ll just eat it with a spoon!

It really is that good!

I think it’d be delicious on ritz crackers too. So many options!

So… for all your get-togethers with friends and family, take this dip along. And make sure you take along several copies of the recipe to hand out because they’ll all be asking for it.

French Onion Dip


  • 3 (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise


  1. Mix all ingredients together.
  2. Put into an 8×8 or 9×9 glass dish.
  3. Bake in preheated 400 degree oven for 30 minutes.

recipe from Stephanie


Much love,



Oatmeal Nut Pie

Oh. My. Goodness!

It’s that time of year when all I want to do is bake.

Give me all the sweet stuff!

oatmeal nut pie slice

And because we are nearing the holidays {I’m not ready}, I thought maybe I should start posting some pie recipes, maybe even do a tutorial or two.

{I need to get brave}

I love making pie! I love making the crust…mmmmm and maybe I make a batch or two extra just for “lady fingers”. My kids and I can devour them in no time. You must be real quick to be able to sneak one out from under us.

This pie is probably my favorite pie…right up there with Strawberry Rhubarb.

So oatmeal pie has been described as the ‘poor man’s pecan pie’.  It is full of a delicious filling containing coconut, walnuts, and of course oatmeal.

My suggestion is that you make 2.  Share one. Hide the other one. Wake up when everyone else is sleeping. Heat it up and add a couple scoops of ice cream. Eat it out of the pan with a fork. And enjoy every last bite!

That’s just my suggestion. {make sure to wash the pan and fork… hide the evidence. They’ll never forgive you} You can thank me later.

Oatmeal Nut Pie


  • 1 cup light karo syrup
  • 3 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup coconut
  • 1 cup oatmeal ( I use quick oats)
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Combine ingredients in order given.
  2. Pour into an unbaked 9″ pie shell.
  3. Bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes or until set.

Serve warm with vanilla ice cream. Or eat cold. It’s good no matter how you serve it.


Much love,








Fall Decorating: Free Printables

I love fall.

Pumpkins. Corn stalks. Pumpkin Spice Chai Lattes. The colors of changing leaves on the mountains. All of it.

I love all of it.

I love to decorate both inside and outside for most seasons and holidays. I try not to go overboard. Most of all…. I try to do it as inexpensive as possible.

That way I don’t feel guilty when I change things up every year.

One of the best ways I have found to add some décor is by finding some cute printables and printing them off and placing them in cute frames.  I am that girl that buys all the frames in the second-hand store. I like to keep them in a box and when I print something off, I find a frame that’ll work and take it on a date outside with a can of spray paint.

The easiest way to change up décor in a hurry and for a small price is with a can of spray paint.

I have found some adorable FREE printables for you and have linked them below. So much fun!

Simply find one you love, download it and then print it off and place it in a cute upcycled frame.


You have a fun decoration that you won’t feel bad about changing up next season, or maybe you’ll keep it around for awhile.

FREE-Fall-Printable pumpkin patch

This adorable Pumpkin Patch sign from Sincerely, Sara D.


I love this Anne of Green Gables quote found at kaylaaimee.


This chalkboard design from LollyJane makes my heart happy.


I’m pretty much obsessed with everything about this cute Pickup and Pumpkins print from my Someday in May.

Fall Subway Art

This Fall Subway Art by The Kurtz Corner is adorable.



This sweet watercolor print by Rosewood and Grace is so perfect!


Aren’t these all so stinkin’ cute?

Happy Fall!


Much love,





Korean Beef

Korean Beef

I have to admit… my husband doesn’t ask for much.  I love cooking for him because he will eat anything I put in front of him and he never complains.

He also very seldom requests anything. Well… except for scones. He will request scones.

He has told me of his Grandma’s delicious tuna fish sandwiches, her snickerdoodles that only she could make to perfection and this “Korean Beef stuff” that his mom would make and they’d eat it over rice.

I have seen this recipe floating around the internet and have decided that I needed to give it a try. It seems to have the elements he has explained in the dish his mom once made.  Anything with ground beef… I’m game. It’s simple and it’s filling…and relatively inexpensive.


Now… I have to explain. We have a schedule that would confuse anyone. Sometimes we wonder who’s coming and who’s going and when and where. But… we seem to make it work.  The mister works night shifts…long ones. So then I work from home when he is sleeping for the most part.  The days he is home, I work in the mornings from home and we usually do yardwork and hang out otherwise. We randomly fall asleep in the middle of the day. On nights like last night I’m up through the wee hours because I am not tired. My body seriously doesn’t know when it’s supposed to be sleeping or awake anymore.

On the days he works I usually have his “lunch” ready around 4:30 so he can get ready and leave by 5:30. It’s crazy some days because I feed him {dinner} but I pack him a {lunch}. Ya know… kinda backwards. But we make it work.

This was super simple to throw together and I cooked Jasmine rice to go with.  That’s our rice of choice around here.

And yes…. I garnished his dinner, because I’m cool like that. {and I needed pics}

Once again, Six Sisters’  recipe is a good one. No surprise.


Korean Beef


  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red peppers
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 bunch green onions, diced
  • Rice, cooked


  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and brown beef with garlic in the sesame oil.
  2. Drain most of the fat and add brown sugar, soy cause, ginger, salt and pepper and red peppers. Simmer for a few minutes to blend the flavors.  Serve over steamed rice and top with green onions


Recipe from Six Sisters’ Stuff


Much love,





Chinese Cabbage Salad

chinese cabbage saladI love salad.

Cabbage salads. Lettuce. Anything that resembles rabbit food.

I like the sweet salads too. But the green kind are more my style.

Give me all the salads!

The first time I tried this salad was when my Aunt brought it to a family dinner a lot of years ago.  I dug right in and it has been one of my favorites since.  I have changed it up a bit from the recipe I received from her. And sometimes if I want it to be a main dish, I will add cooked chicken to it.


What is your favorite salad?


Chinese Cabbage Salad


  • 1 head cabbage, shredded or finely chopped
  • 2 packages chicken flavored ramen noodles, crushed (reserve seasoning for dressing)
  • 1 cup salted sunflower seeds
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 2 lg carrots, chopped

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 4 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 2 packages reserved ramen noodle seasoning


  1. Place the cabbage, carrots, onions, sunflowers seeds and crushed ramen noodles in a large serving bowl. Mix well. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whish together all dressing ingredients and pour over salad mixture. Refrigerate several hours before serving.


Much love…






Delicious Cheesy Potato Soup

Delicious Cheesy Potato Soup


Fall is in the air. The mornings are cool and the breeze coming in the through the bedroom window is so cool.

My favorite part of fall is the flavors that come with it. The warm comfort foods and the smell of pumpkin. Oh. And blankets. I love me a good snuggly blanket.

My first thought as I tucked my feet back under the blanket in bed  this morning was that I needed to make soup for dinner.  Finally.  It’s soup weather.

I know there are all these recipes out there for this healthy veggie soup with clear broth. But I’m here to tell you that the ONLY soup I want right now is a creamy, cheesy, bacon-filled potato soup.

This is a soup I’ve made for several years.  Pretty much started with one of those kind of days that you’re using up the remainder of the groceries in your fridge and pantry and this is what came of it.  I haven’t written down the recipe til now because, let’s be honest, I haven’t used one.

There are so many delicious potato soup recipes out there. Many variations of the same thing. Well, I seem to do that on my own. I never make it the same twice. But after everyone was asking for the recipe, I decided it was time to pay attention to detail and write it all down.

First, you must know…. this is a variety for the crockpot.  I have a big crockpot and it was too full for the lid to go back on when I was finished.  So, this will feed an army. But on the plus side, you can either have lots of leftovers, you can share, or you can freeze it for a later time when you don’t want to cook.  I love to share hot soup.  Usually accompanied with fresh-from-the-oven rolls. Because it’s comfort food at its finest.

From my kitchen to yours, enjoy!

Delicious Cheesy Potato Soup


  • 20 small-medium potatoes- peeled and cubed (I used russets)
  • 1 Lg onion, chopped
  • 5 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 6 stalks celery, diced (I used the leaves too)
  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 1 lb bacon, cut in small pieces and cooked until crisp, drain, set aside
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups cold milk
  • 3+ cups shredded cheese (I used medium and sharp cheddar)
  • 1+ cup sour cream
  • additional bacon, shredded cheese and green onions for garnish


  1. Chop, dice, and slice the potatoes, onions, carrots and celery. Throw them in your crockpot and pour chicken broth/stock over them. Set on high and let it cook.
  2. Cook and crumble bacon, set on paper towel to drain. (hide… if you don’t it will be gone before the veggies are cooked)
  3. After veggies are tender, approximately 4 hrs, you will make your thickening rue. Start by melting 1/2 cup butter (no margarine!) in a frying pan. Add salt and pepper and stir until completely melted. Add the flour. Whisk together and continually stir until combined. Add milk, continue stirring. Cook for several minutes. The longer it cooks, the less you’ll know you used flour :).
  4. Add to soup and stir until completely combined.
  5. Now add your cheese.  This is usually where I’m dumping what’s left of several bags of shredded cheese.
  6. Add sour cream and gently stir.
  7. Add bacon. (make sure to leave enough to garnish)
  8. Chop green onions.. Garnish with shredded cheese, green onions and bacon pieces.

An original recipe by Teauna of becauseican.me


Much Love….




Homemade Oreos

homemade oreos

There is something about a chewy chocolate cookie sandwich filled with cream cheese frosting that makes me smile.

How about you?

I have used this recipe for years and shared it with many.

I prefer to use a milk chocolate cake mix, but if you prefer a darker chocolate, you can use a devil’s food cake mix or Betty Crocker’s Triple Chocolate Fudge is delicious as well.  I can’t say it enough… make sure you use a quality cake mix ie… Betty Crocker, Duncan Hines, etc. I have found the off-brand mixes to be grainy at times and they just never seem to mix up smoothly. So take my word for it. You’ll thank me later.

What makes these cookies so special {besides the delicious chewy chocolaty cookie goodness} is the rich cream cheese frosting. Because…frosting! Add some food coloring for a special touch or simply roll them in delicious sprinkles for a special occasion.

The BEST OREOs ever


  • 2 chocolate cake mixes (I like Betty Crocker Milk Chocolate best)
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup oil

Frosting Ingredients:

  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 2 2/3 cup powdered sugar (+/-)


  1. Mix cake mixes, eggs and oil together.  Drop by teaspoonfuls (or use cookie scoop) on cookie sheet. I like to line mine with a SILPAT but it isn’t necessary. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes. DO NOT OVERBAKE! Cool completely on cooling rack.
  2. Mix frosting ingredients together.  Frost the underside of a cookie with frosting and sandwich together. Roll in a bowl of sprinkles if you want to.






It’s that time again…

hello spring.jpg

I have always loved flowers. I love warm weather.  To me, the new beginnings of spring is like breathing new life. Every blooming flower makes me happy and fills my soul with happiness and warmth.

I planted some spring flowers in pots in the house so that I could enjoy them while I was healing up from surgery.  They have all bloomed now so today Kenzie is going to help me plant them outside so they can continue making me happy for years to come.

They deserve to be able to be outside reaching for the sunshine.

Happy Spring everyone!!

Much love,



A bump in the road….

Every once in a while, in the middle of an ordinary life when you think you’re finally on top of your game, the doctor throws you a curve ball and tells you he needs to operate in 5 days.

And that you’ll be down for 6 weeks.

Ummmmmmmm. It’s finally springtime and I NEEED to do some serious yardwork.

Well, I was expecting the surgery. And honestly I was thinking of asking for it.  I had it all planned out what to say to him. Like…. “Come on. I have good insurance. Let’s do it now.” Or “I’m not leaving here until you agree to just taking it all out.” But he beat me to the punch.

But because it was necessary. NOW.

And still. I was shocked and speechless.

I have had my fair share of issues over the years but this last little while has been awful and I knew that I was eventually going to be needing surgery.


I’m a week out of surgery now and I feel crappy. I really thought I’d bounce back faster than this and I’ve been seriously irritated that I really have had to spend so much time in bed feeling like crap on crackers.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

A hysterectomy….

I’m still young….. or am I?

I mean, I realize I have 2 teenagers, 1 being an adult teenager! He graduates in 2 months! What? I know that my child bearing years are over for sure.

But wow.

Okay. Well I just never had thought about it.  I’ve kinda had these parts my whole life. I mean, I was born with them. Which must mean I’m supposed to have them for life, right?

I remember that awful moment in elementary when they bring out the granny panties with an already attached big old pad and give you the “talk” about how to deal with your female reproduction parts you were born with. And the fear that’s put in place about what’s yet to come. Oh my. I still remember being so worried about the blood bath that was in my future. It all seems so dramatic and life threatening at that age.

As women, we just know that this is our life. We deal with it.

And now I don’t have to anymore. That part, I’m not complaining.

Okay… but really. I am so very glad to have it over and done with and I’m a week into the healing process. And I’m so grateful for my amazing doctor and his staff and their care they showed for me. I had a couple setbacks and am so glad I had such talented and caring people around me to make sure I was okay.10 things I learned about me

10 things I have realized thru this process:

1. I can do hard things.

2. I was blessed to carry 2 beautiful healthy babies in my womb. And so very grateful to have been able to do so.  So many women never get that chance.

3. I have an amazing support system.

4. I am hard on myself. When I’m forced to sit down and do nothing, I realize how much I actually do.

5. It kills me to watch my daughter and husband cook dinner and do the dishes and run to the store and run all the errands. They work and school all day. I’m home. That’s hardly fair.

6. I knew I was going to die to be outside in the yard so I planted tulips, hyacinths and daffodils that I bought for $1 each at Walmart in my pretty little indoor pots. They’re beautiful and all starting to bloom. So glad I thought to bring spring in the home so I could enjoy it.

7. I think my little Bella has earned her Service Dog cape. She is too smart for her own good and she has watched over me super close. She’s always walking in front of me while looking back over her shoulder making sure I’m okay. And Daizee, she is just my snugglebug. Bella has a way of making me giggle…

Bella smile

8. I don’t have a care in the world to who doesn’t love me because there are plenty of people that do.

9. My lack of appetite has helped me kick my soda pop habit.

10. I will never ever be a drug addict. Oh how I hate the way they make me feel. Pray I never have to do Benadryl thru the IV again. Not only does it burn like hell and leave your arm aching for days, but those planes bombing the hospital with flying cartoon foxes were brutal.

Thanks for being a part of my journey.


Much Love,



Shepherd’s Pie


I’m an Idaho girl.  My husband has lovingly called me “Spud” a time or two at dinnertime.  I guess this means I make more potatoes than he was used to eating before we were married. I use potatoes in my meals quite a bit. When you’re surrounded by potato farms in the summer and fall, it’s a good reminder to stock up on potatoes for the winter months.

Add some meat and veggies and a meal is made…. right?  Well it’s almost that easy.

I keep my freezer, fridge and pantry stocked with staple foods and I just love when I’m able to use these items to make a good healthy and hearty meal without making a trip to the store. And it’s even better when the meal makes it on the top 10 favorite list in our home.

We have had so much snow this winter and it’s been coooolllllllddd.  I, of course, just want to make warm comfort foods and make it all better.  This makes everything all better!

But… my favorite part of this meal is its nickname here in the Hawkes’ household.  It’s ‘Derek’s Pie’. Yes.. we are fans of Grey’s Anatomy.


Shepherd's Pie


  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 large onion, diced (approximately 1 cup)
  • 4 carrots, peeled and sliced thinly
  • 2 fresh cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 3 tsp sea salt, divided
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1/3 cup beef stock
  • 3 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 or 5 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 heavy cream (you could use milk)
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen peas
  • 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Add the potatoes and boil them for 10-15 minutes or until they are tender when you stab them with a fork.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, melt the butter and add the onions and carrots. Cook them over medium heat until they start to soften.  It should take about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and ground beef, using a spatula to break it up as it cooks.  Add 1 tsp sea salt.
  3. Sprinkle the flour over the top of the beef and stir well. Add the beef stock and Worcestershire sauce.  Let it simmer until the juices thicken.
  4. Drain the potatoes and return them to the pot.  Mash the potatoes to break them up. {**I use a Pampered Chef Mix ‘N Chop to mash my potatoes} Add the butter and heavy cream.  Continue mashing until the potatoes are smooth and the cream and butter are incorporated fully.  Season with the black pepper and 2 tsps. salt.
  5. Add the peas to the meat mixture. Place meat mixture in pie pan or 9×9 pan, whatever you have available.
  6. Top the beef mixture with the mashed potatoes and spread them into an even layer.  Sprinkle the grated cheese over the top of the potatoes.
  7. Turn the oven to broil. Place the pie on a sheet pan and place under the broiler.  Let broil just long enough for the cheese and the potatoes to become golden around the edges.
  8. Remove from oven and serve.


adapted from girl gone gourmet


Much love,