Coconut Water Iced Coffee

September 1, 2014 by Ali

Tomorrow marks my 31 1/3 birthday. Par-tay!!!

(What? You don’t celebrate 1/3 birthdays? You must.)

Ok ok, I usually don’t either. But I was checking in the other day with the list I made of 31 Things I want to do at age 31, and realized that I’m already 4 months in. Which means that it’s already September (what?!), which means that my summer of fun and sun and crazy adventures is drawing to a close, which means that items like #19 on my list had better happen stat, along with the other remaining items that I want to have the satisfaction of accomplishing (and crossing off).

Speaking of, are you a list person?? Do you like to make “life” lists? Or annual lists? Or daily lists? Or grocery lists?

I am definitely a through-and-through list LOVER. Evernote and stickies are my friend, and definitely reel in the natural scatterbrained-multitasking-ness of my mind and help me focus on making the things that are important to me. This is especially true when it comes to planning out my everyday life, which happens at my dining room table every morning. I’ve mentioned on here that I’m totally not a natural morning. But taking time to sit in the stillness, and reflect, and intentionally design my day is one of my favorite ways to begin the day. So I have found that the key to helping myself wake up and get things moving is a strong cup of homemade coffee. And my favorite version as of late?

Coconut water iced coffee.

Oh yes. It’s a thing. And it will rock your mornings.

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15 Comforting Casserole Recipes

August 31, 2014 by Ali

Alright, let’s be honest. There are a few retro food trends that are probably better left firmly in the past. (Ahem.)

But lest you think that the days of the beloved casserole are over, think again. Casseroles are back, baby, and better than ever! And there are plenty of stellar casserole recipes filling up the blogosphere — and this blog — to prove it.

The idea behind these modern casseroles is still the same — basically, throw all sorts of ingredients in a pan and bake it. But the old-school processed and bland ingredients are getting replaced for all things fresh and flavorful. And many more options are popping up too for those looking for healthier or vegan or gluten-free options. (Half of the list below are GF recipes.)

So today I thought it would be fun to do a roundup of 15 recent casserole recipes from Gimme Some Oven and a few other food bloggers I love. The recipes are all what I consider total comfort food, and will be perfect for the winter months and busy school nights ahead. So grab a casserole dish, and get to cookin’, good lookin’!

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Chorizo Queso

August 29, 2014 by Ali

Just when you thought chips and queso couldn’t get any better…

chorizo joined the party.

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Grilled Chicken with Pineapple Avocado Salsa

August 28, 2014 by Ali

We’re 3 days away from September, and I finally went swimming for the first time of the summer last night.

About. Dang. Time.

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Italian Orzo Spinach Soup

August 27, 2014 by Ali

This past Sunday, I woke up on the wrong side of the bed. The Let’s-Be-Unusually-Hard-On-Yourself-About-Everything-Today side of the bed.

First of all, I woke up to the sound of my oven timer beeping loudly at me at 6:30am because Forgetful Here accidentally left my phone (a.k.a. the only “alarm clock” I own) at book club the night before. Lovely. Then I hopped in my car to head to church for early band practice, and got completely annoyed after something crashed in the trunk that I still hadn’t cleaned out the clutter in my car for a few weeks. Then, despite getting to play with the most encouraging and awesome group of guys in our band, I started getting super down about my singing and felt like my voice wasn’t strong enough or versatile enough or simply good enough. And then during church, my mind began to wander into the spiral of project deadlines looming and laundry piled up and friends who I hadn’t seen in awhile and a mega load of dishes waiting in the sink and books I couldn’t find time to read and on and on, and before I knew it, it was like – POOF!

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Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

August 25, 2014 by Ali

This recipe goes out to all of you rad parents with kiddos heading back to school this week. You asked for quick and easy recipes in our recent reader survey here. And let me tell you, this one’s a keeper. If you were a child of the 80′s like me, you can even pop it in your Trapper Keeper to hold onto for busy school nights ahead.

Ohhh yeah.

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Easy Blueberry “Cheesecake” Bites

August 22, 2014 by Ali

I made you a new snackity snack!

And I hereby name them “cheesecake bites”. Aren’t they cute?!?

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Lemon Meringue Pie

August 20, 2014 by Ali

Last week, there was a birthday in da house at #neighbornights — my friend, Liam!

Talk about neighbors turned into good friends. I can’t really imagine life in our loft without this guy. Liam is a born-and-raised New Yorker who followed a job to Kansas City and ended up living across the hall from me. And during the past two years that I’ve lived in this building, he has been my #1 neighbor.

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