Salads for the Memorial Day BBQ

Salads with some unexpected flavor combinations to side with your bbq main whether its hot dogs, pulled pork, ribs, burgers or tacos…

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Creamy Cauliflower Mash

I tried my own version of mashed cauliflower this week as a less starchy side dish and I am very pleased to share that it was amazingly good…

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15 Spring Green Recipes

It's not hard to see why there's been a big push in recent years to "eat seasonally" — summer's strawberries and winter's leafy greens that have so much…

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The Benefits of Chia Seeds

This awesome little superfood has many health benefits for the whole body. Chia seeds are a great antioxidant…

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Valentines Day №5 | Delicious & Healthy Desserts

I always want to end a great meal with something sweet but without the guilt and if you're like me, the million questions to the kitchen about the ingredient list. Who's with me? Click through for our 15 favorite healthy Valentine's sweets (and yes, we're using the term"healthy" somewhat loosely here). But there's something for those of us who have food allergies or gluten-intolerances (me) or if you just prefer something on the lighter side.

1. Raspberry Ripple Coconut Ice Cream, Minimalist Baker (click here for recipe)

2. Raw Chocolate Raspberry Slice, Frankie's Feast (click here for recipe)

3. Avocado Chocolate Mouse, As Easy As Apple Pie (click here for recipe)

4. Vegan Mayan Drinking Chocolate, Minimalist Baker (click here for recipe)

5. Tart Cherry Cheesecake Parfaits, Love & Lemons (click here for recipe)

6. Cashew Dark Chocolate Energy Bites, Gimme Some Oven (click here for recipe)

7. Dark Chocolate Detox Bites, The View from Great Island (click here for recipe)

8. Einkorn Crepes with Fresh Berries, Naturally Ella (click here for recipe

9. Coffee Ice Cream, Primal Palate (click here for recipe)

10. Raspberry Rose Soufflé, Life is Great the Delicious Appreciations of Pick Yin (click here for recipe)

11. Chocolate Chip Cherry Meringues, Baked by an Introvert (click here for recipe from our Thanksgiving post)

12. No Bake Raspberry Truffle Tart, Bakerita.com (click here for recipe)

13. 3-Ingredient Flourless Chocolate Cake, Gimme Some Oven (click here for recipe)

14. Vegan Peanut Butter Cup Pie, Minimalist Baker (click here for recipe)


This week's Pin Board

I am a Pinterest addict and this week I've come across some inspirational and uplifting "made me smile" images. Something a little different than my usual blog post this Thursday is about sharing my mood board with you. Don't forget to follow me on Pinterest if you aren't already! You can find these and more from my photo libraries.

A well tailored blazer and baseball cap says it all...I know what I'm doing!! Lol.  (Photo: shop.emersonfry.com)
A well tailored blazer and baseball cap says it all...I know what I'm doing!! Lol.  (Photo: shop.emersonfry.com)
I can only think of Brooklyn and that I need to put a design together inspired by this photo. #brooklynbrownstone #comingsoon  (Photo: brittanyambridge.com)
I can only think of Brooklyn and that I need to put a design together inspired by this photo. #brooklynbrownstone #comingsoon  (Photo: brittanyambridge.com)
When you are accomplished it shows!!!  This just makes me happy and thankful for my own life and accomplishments. Not to mention this is a flawless photo capturing one of the best smiles in the world. #juliaroberts #blessed #legacy #womenpower (Photo: karinecandicekong.com)
When you are accomplished it shows!!!  This just makes me happy and thankful for my own life and accomplishments. Not to mention this is a flawless photo capturing one of the best smiles in the world. #juliaroberts #blessed #legacy #womenpower (Photo: karinecandicekong.com)
#KILLINGIT Whatever IT is....you killing it! Make the impossible possible. This needs to be on a t-shirt for the "Killing It" campaign. Haha! (Photo: uvre.tumbler.com)

#KILLINGIT Whatever IT is....you killing it! Make the impossible possible. This needs to be on a t-shirt for the "Killing It" campaign. Haha! (Photo: uvre.tumbler.com)

The heart of the home. This French-style kitchen featured in Better Homes & Gardens has it all. Don't you just want to cook and entertain in here?  #parisianstyle (Photo: Better Homes & Gardens)
The heart of the home. This French-style kitchen featured in Better Homes & Gardens has it all. Don't you just want to cook and entertain in here?  #parisianstyle (Photo: Better Homes & Gardens)
 (Silence.) Just look at the detail of this millwork. Breathtakingly beautiful. (Photo: koziel.fr) 
 (Silence.) Just look at the detail of this millwork. Breathtakingly beautiful. (Photo: koziel.fr) 
MMMMMMMmmmmmmmmmm! Raspberry Lemon cookies get in my belly! #sweettooth  (Photo: Bake.Eat.Repeat)
MMMMMMMmmmmmmmmmm! Raspberry Lemon cookies get in my belly! #sweettooth  (Photo: Bake.Eat.Repeat)

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New Year's Eve Dinner

I thought I'd share a few photos and a favorite beverage recipe from our New Year's Eve dinner. H-E-B had a crazy special on fresh lobster today I just couldn't pass it up. So here's Oven Grilled Garlic Lobster Tails with Sriracha butter! Mmmmm. Yes, Sriracha butter! These babies were rubbed down and basted with this butter then baked in the oven for about 9 minutes. Voila!

Oven Grilled Garlic Lobster Tails with Sriracha Butter
Oven Grilled Garlic Lobster Tails with Sriracha Butter

I also prepared a very simple angle hair pasta with lemon garlic butter and capers to side with the lobster. 

Angel Hair Pasta with Lemon Garlic Butter finished with grated parmesan cheese and fresh chives
Angel Hair Pasta with Lemon Garlic Butter finished with grated parmesan cheese and fresh chives

Here is one of my favorite beverage recipes I'd like to share with you. This drink adds another layer of satisfaction to any meal. But it especially pairs perfectly with seafood!

ELDERFLOWER & APPLE PRESS MOCKTAIL WITH MINT

This beverage is perfect during any season and with any meal. It can be modified very easily and requires no alcohol. It's refreshing and lite and for those that don't drink, this is a great option to serve, and only requires four ingredients. 

1 Lime

1 bottle of Perrier (no flavor)

Cawston Press Apple & Elderflower Juice (you can find this at H-E-B in the juice aisle)

Fresh mint leaves

Start by tossing a few fresh mint leaves into a cocktail shaker and pound the life out of them. The flavor and scent of the leaf will release and infuse the liquid when it's added. This process is very important, and isn't for looks alone, so don't skip!

Add one equal part of the Cawston Press Apple & Elderflower juice, about 8 ounces. This drink is pure so moderate ratio as desired.

Add one equal part of Perrier, about 6-8 ounces. Again this is where you can add creativity  with a flavored sparkling or tonic water. If you want the drink to be less sweet, add more Perrier. Next, squeeze half of a lime, add a few cubes of ice and give the mixture three gentle shakes and serve!

Happy New Year!!

-xo, #design.life.style


Homemade Scents

Thanksgiving is in just a few days...YAY!! Can't you just close your eyes and smell Thanksgiving? Get your home smelling…

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THANKSGIVING: Sweet Tooth

I'm sure you're gearing up for your Thanksgiving holiday feast. It's that time of year most of us want to impress the in-laws, our friends, and maybe even ourselves with something new and out of our realm of comfort in the kitchen. We have a long list of must-eats at the Neal house, which consist of my husband's famous Lamb Chops and now his Red Beans. Can you imagine an Irishman cooking Louisiana style Red Beans n' Rice! LOL. It's not your typical Thanksgiving menu at our home but my Mom and Dad never disappoint with Fried Turkey, Dirty Rice and Sweeeeeet Potato pie!! MMMMmmmm!

I'm soooo excited!! Not only to celebrate my favorite holiday and be with our family and friends, but it's the first Thanksgiving in our new home. Hubby and I love hosting and cooking. This year it's all about the sweet tooth and I want to add two of these new sugar addictions to our dining experience. Look at these sure to please dessert close-ups. I will post photos of how my attempts to re-create these unique sweets turned out.

Don't these just make your mouth water? What are you making this year or what are you looking forward to having someone else bring to the dinner table...LOL?

-Happy Friday & Happy Pinning!