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Vacation Wrap-Up!

Vacations are great! Trying to get back into the swing of things after vacation…not so great! I’m still trying to catch up on the laundry. Anyone else ever struggle with this when they come home from vacation? Whew! If you don’t hear from me in a few days come looking under the mountain of laundry!

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Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes With Fresh Blueberry Lemon Zest Topping

Vacation is over and it was wonderful! Sigh! 10 glorious days with my favorite person on planet earth! I promise the “wrap up” is coming but, in the meantime let’s chat about my love for pancakes! I have always…YES! ALWAYS…I’m not exaggerating… loved pancakes! I honestly do not know how any breakfast food with the word “cake” in it could not be loved?! After 9 days of vacationing and eating out every day, I woke up yesterday wanting a good ole homemade breakfast! (No offense to the new Carl’s pretzel breakfast sandwich. Which I may or may not have had…) When it comes to Saturday or Sunday morning breakfast it has to be something different than every other cold cereal breakfast day of the week! I think of… fluffy scrambled eggs, crispy fried bacon, and…pancakes! Like I said, I’ve loved them for as long as I can remember!

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie

Have you seen it? The million pins of the chocolate chip cookie pie on Pinterest this past month or have you been visiting another planet?! It’s actually an original recipe from Allrecipes.com. You can find it on their site by clicking here . (I also have the recipe below that you can print off) I love Allrecipes! I have found some of my nests very favorite recipes on their site.

Last Sunday, I REALLY wanted something ooey… gooey… rich… and chewy! Something that would make my eyes roll back in my head and personally thank my lips! You gals understand. Sometimes we just need a rich dessert! Well, I went to my Pinterest board “dessert heaven” and found this delectable mouth watering masterpiece! It was a cookie and… a pie! Brilliant! I decided to give it a try and see if it could live up to all the hype it was receiving! I mean sure, the pictures had me wanting to lick the screen but, I’ll be honest, I’ve tried some recipes that had awesome pictures only to find out that they were much better on paper than in my stomach! (If ya know what I mean?)

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Vacation For Two…Day Two

I like to call day two Venus vs. Mars! After surviving the cave (Mars) it was my turn to pick our next adventure (Venus)! I realized once again, that while Mars and Venus may be in the same solar system, there are millions of light years between the two! I thought I was a pretty darn good sport about cave exploring and my honorary position as “Ranger Norine”. So, I picked one of our favorite Southern Utah towns. Santa Clara for day two. I just knew that “Mars” was going to love my adventure as much as I was! (light years people, LIGHT YEARS!)…

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Vacation for Two Please

Several months ago Grill Master and I started planning a vacation. It would be our first “alone” trip in 17 years. Our last, was a cruise to Alaska in 1999. To be frank, I’m not sure that even qualified for “alone”? It was a couples cruise with all my siblings and their spouses! It was a wonderful trip but, we are WAY over due! With the nest empty we decided we would do something just for us! (Yes! It does feel good to be totally selfish after all these years. I’m not going to lie!) As we began planning our trip there were a few “unspoken” guidelines. First, any location requiring flight…OUT! (It’s a long story for another day! I might have “wings” but, not the kind needed for flying!) Tropical locations equal swimsuits…definitely OUT! (His legs have not seen sunshine since the great sunburnt feet incident of 1990, and my body hasn’t been stuffed into a swimsuit since…yeah, well…that long! Nuff said) Hot locations…totally OUT! (Me+ heat is SO not pretty! I make Godzilla look like an annoyed little lizard!) All that said … It had to be some where we love, could drive to, (fully clothed), in cool weather. We tossed around all kinds of ideas but, nothing appealed to us. Then one day while we were talking, I was on Pinterest, (I like to think of it as multi-tasking not ignoring Grill Master) Anyway, I saw a pin that read…

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Chili Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Apricot Glaze

Let’s talk pork! It’s finally grilling season here in cold country. I realize some of you can grill year round, but my “Grill Master” is not fond of standing in 6 inches of snow with a wind chill of 16! Not even for me! (Sad, I know!) Thankfully those cold days are behind us (fingers crossed) and we are warming up. That means it’s time to break out some of my favorite grilling recipes! I’m starting with one of my “Nests” all time favorites! This is hands down, one of the MOST AMAZING pork tenderloin recipes you will ever find! (Trust me! Pretty please!)

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bundt cake with a glaze and lemon flavored

Lemon Poppy Seed Bundt Cake

Lemon! One simple word, and your mouth begins to anticipate a flavor explosion! I love all things lemon! The zing of tartness, the smell of fresh grated lemon zest, and the plump bright beautiful yellows! Sigh…I always have and… I expect that I always will. Unless something drastic happens like a tastebudectomy!?? YIKES! (Yes! I know that isn’t a real word! It’s the beginning of the week. I’m being creative!) I have a feeling it is universal! This love of lemon. There are only 4.5 million flavors of lemonade, (o.k. maybe a slight exaggeration!), so I think I’m standing on some solid “lemony” ground here!

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chocolate cupcake with frosting and a cherry in the middle

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cupcakes

Cupcakes! (Que the heavenly music) Or, as I like to refer to them, Little Carb Cups of Joy! They make me… SO happy! I love, love, love to make cupcakes! ( Did I mention I love to make cupcakes?) Anywho… last week I signed up to make a bake good for a bake sale some girls at our church were having. I knew right away I would make cupcakes. It makes perfect sense if you think about it. You make a cake and you have to turn over all the “goods!”. It’d look kind of silly to hand over a cake with a couple of slices missing! (Not that I wouldn’t! Which is really pathetic when you think about it!) You make cupcakes…well…you can keep a few out for yourself! Which I did! I mean for crying out loud you HAVE to taste test the goods you are donating! It’s the considerate thing to do!

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Fresh Homemade Salsa!

Hold On! This is big folks! BIG! I’m going to share my “top secret” Fresh Salsa recipe! I learned to make this salsa from my “bestie”, my Aunt Janie. Well… I thought I did?! One day she was over visiting and I was whipping up a batch of “her” salsa, I told her I was making her recipe! She laughed and said “Oh, it’s great salsa but, this isn’t my recipe! I’ve never made my salsa like this!” SAY WHAT?!! Shut the front door and color me purple! I turned to her and said, What are you talking about?! I’ve watched you make this salsa a hundred times and this is EXACTLY how you make it! She laughed again and said “Nor, this isn’t how I make my salsa!” Hmmm! Maybe she did share “her” recipe with me that day but, if she did I don’t remember, and honestly as far as I’m concerned… this is HER salsa and I make it perfectly! Ha! Oh boy! I can hear her now giggling up above and shaking her head…

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