Growing up, I thought living in the northwoods of Wisconsin was the worst thing in the whole world. I was jealous of my cousins in Chicago with their houses all in a row. The sound of airplanes and trains at night, the lightning bugs and the fact that it never really got dark outside.


[at home, last fall]

My dream was to move to a big city somewhere and escape the small town gossip, vast starry skies and eery silence that was occasionally disrupted by the sound of woodland creatures.

That childhood dream DID come true. I met the man of my dreams and moved to the big city that I love so much. But wow do I miss those cold mornings when steam would pour off the lakes and everything was covered in a thin layer of mist.

I took so much of it for granted and now I count down the days to when I get to be at home, wrapped in a blanket drinking coffee with my family. It is my favorite place on earth now. The things I hated, like the zero traffic lights and knowing literally every face at the grocery store are the things I miss and love about that town so much. Sometimes it takes something missing from your life to realize how much you love it and how much it has shaped the person you are.

I used to be embarrassed to admit that I was a cheese head who loved the Packers and could name over 30 cheeses…but now those are the things I’m most proud of. Maybe it’s the season, maybe it’s the crisp weather or the fact that I had an amazing trip last weekend…but I can’t stop sharing my love for the great state of WI! So here are the WI things I am loving on lately!

Obviously beer and cheddar are two major food groups in Wisco. Therefore, these garlic knots with beer cheddar sauce need to happen for the next Packer game! 13952896371_49f1f2ff98_c

Look how cute this little print from 1canoe2 is!


My favorite WI cocktail (a bloody mary isn’t a cocktail, right?) is the Old Fashioned. Whiskey or brandy, sweet or sour, I love them all if made correctly!


Then there is this perfection. For which I have no words.


And one of the most haunting, beautiful things I’ve ever seen. The Northern Lights. I remember my parents waking us up to go up in our field and watch them or my Dad turning off the headlights on our car so the vivid lights could guide us home. They are so breathtaking.


Pumpkin & Pretzel Seven Layer Bars

The title of these sweet treats may be a little confusing.

There is a pretzel crust and give or take about 7 layers…but all that really matters is that there is PUMPKIN!

And pumpkin can only mean one thing (at least for me)…that it’s fall!

I love the fall so much (sorry, I know I’ve been saying that a lot lately!).


I found these bars after hearing about a similar recipe from a friend at work. I was generally happy with how they turned out. Much to my surprise, I was out of graham crackers and had to improvise with the pretzel crust. I would have added another tablespoon of butter to it (I will include it in the recipe below). I also couldn’t find cinnamon chips and thought I had white chocolate chips, but I didn’t…so I used just semi-sweet (correct recipe below).

Sooooooooo even though these bars were good…they would have been way better had I read the recipe and looked through my pantry prior to going to the store.

Also, going to the grocery store on a Sunday is THE worst idea. I always think (hope?) it won’t be as busy as the week before…but sure enough, every Sunday is terrible.

There are no carts left.

There are people texting in the MIDDLE OF THE ISLE with their giant carts parked so no one can get by. People bunch around the free sample tables and leave their carts full of belongings (i.e. children) everywhere so you have to awkwardly move their cart and hope they A. don’t notice, or B. don’t super mean mug the crap out of you.

Then, everyone wants ice cream (including you)…so the cases are completely fogged up from everyone standing there with the door open while aimlessly searching for the newest flavor of Ben & Jerry’s (guilty).

Then, finally…there is the line that takes literally forever. And once you are up there the woman checking you out can’t find the code for your Tomatillos so she has to find help, which takes forever. And all the while, the same Dad who mean-mugged you for moving his cart earlier (so what if there was a child in it) is once again, giving you the death stare while silently judging the fact that you have ice cream, candy (baking supplies, duh) the largest bag of tortilla chips you could find, wine, 4 avocados, 4 bricks of misc. cheeses, tampons and a handful of other impulse buys (all high in fat/sugar). You finally finish, take your reusable bags from home (unlike angry, organic, beard-Dad) and make the super sweaty trek from the store to your house because no one in their right mind would try parking at that zoo on a Sunday.

End rant.


So take my advice: Make some fall treats and avoid the grocery store on Sundays :)


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Hey friends!

I hope everyone had a lovely week and that you are as excited about the weekend as I am. I’m headed up to Madison, WI for the night to hang out with one of my best girls, and see one of my all time favorite bands, The Head and The Heart. They are playing a free show on King St. and I Can’t. Wait.


If you have never heard their music, I super encourage you to check them out. Beautiful people with beautiful harmonies. Plus, Charity Rose Thielin is my hair/clothing inspiration. I think she may be the coolest person alive.

I’m also VERY excited to stock up on Staghorn Octoberfest from my favorite brewery, New Glarus. You can only buy this beer in WI and I can’t wait to load up!

PLUS it pairs well with: Swedish Meatballs, Friday night Fish Fry, and soft Cow’s Milk Cheese…YUM


I’m also just very excited to be in WI this time of year. In college, Mikey and I started dating and fell in love in the crisp fall weather in Madison, WI.  We have very fond memories of the cool weather, football, badger sweatshirts, dinners on State St, coffee dates (Mikey used to pretend he liked drinking coffee, ha!) and frozen fingers from outdoor drinking games and holding cold beer. I can’t wait to once again be in the place that reminds me of our early dating days.

Mikey and I are planning a trip up to visit my family later in the fall and I can’t wait to see all the beautiful leaves changing. I love this Fall Color Report map that shows where the colors are and when they will be at their peak. I can’t believe my home town is already at 40%. Fall is officially upon us!


Now that autumn is here, we have lots of seasonal fruits and root veggies to look forward to. This is a nice change from our usual roasted cauliflower. This Raw Cauliflower Salad with a horseradish and dill yogurt sauce looks so light and refreshing. I can’t wait to try this recipe out!


I love this bathroom. I am always so drawn to white! Our list of home renovations is growing by the minute and I’m now convinced we need to paint our bathroom completely white just like this (plus check out the sink).

c6adb330ce0a78d888f62ecdc41cf0d6Have a great Friday everyone! Get out and enjoy some delicious food this weekend!!!!



Turkey, Sweet Potato and Pea Curry

This chilly weather has me craving warm and hearty foods already!

Mikey and I are hugeeeeee curry fanatics and this turkey curry does not disappoint. It is a staple in our fall and winter dinner cycle and I thought I would share it with you today!


The combination of all the spices mixed with the jalapeno and ginger makes this curry a great cold-remedy. It clears your sinuses and calms you stomach. We like to serve this over jasmine rice and top it with a sprinkle of fresh basil or cilantro.

If you’re not a complete curry fan like us, you can try taming the spices down by about 1/2 teaspoon each. Or just omit spices you don’t like in your foods (cinnamon, cardamom) and gradually work up to those flavors!

You could add or subtract any of the veggies here as well as the ground turkey. Just as long as you let everything simmer in the coconut milk mixture until it is cooked through.



I hope you’ve started to mentally prepare for fall…I am almost there.

I bet Mikey a back rub that we still have one more 80 degree left before the cold and permanent fall weather sets in…It looks like this Saturday could be my chance at a victory…we shall see!

I hope to make some yummy fall dishes to share with you this weekend! Do you have any fall favorites? If so I would love to hear about them or see a link shared in my comments! I’m always searching for delicious new (or old to you, new to me) recipes!




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Malted Chocolate Whopper Cake

It’s a candy explosion! 

DSC_0191When I first saw this cake I knew I had to make it happen. 

And now I think I’m addicted.

I want to make every flavor of cake with every type of candy. I love the fun, messy and delicious way the whoppers and sprinkles look. 

I already have 3 other cake ideas that I can’t wait to try! Now if only I could find things to do with all this cake I plan on making!  


This is a pretty simple cake to make and the chocolate/malt cake is absolutely delicious. Who knew you could add malt powder to batter and glaze? A genius, that’s who. I am so in love. I recommend you make this cake whether you like malt powder or not. It is a light and fluffy chocolate cake but so so moist. Then the crunch from the Whoppers and sprinkles, plus the soft fluffy cake and sweet sticky glaze…I just can’t stop. 

Do yourself or someone else a favor…make this malted milk ball cake. You will be super glad you did :) 


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