Back to School

It’s that time of year again. Our favorite little energy-filled four-year-old boy heads back to preschool next week. I am so ready and not at all ready to get back to the daily grind.


One of the best perks of having a professor husband has to be spending Summer together as a family. Summer has flown by, but we have lived our school-free lives to the fullest. We’ve gone for walks around the neighborhood, watched the fireflies dance in our backyard, stargazed (D has been obsessed with stars and space recently), taken full advantage of our neighborhood pool, took an amazing road trip across the country to see friends and family, and consumed way too much ice cream.

Little Man Ice Cream

Wait…is there such a thing as too much ice cream?

The time has come to get back to backpacks, markers, construction paper, pick-ups and drop-offs, school friends, afterschool snacks, and a consistent bedtime again. We’ve got this! Wishing everyone lots of luck for a happy, safe school year full of memory making!

S’mores Cookies

S'mores Cookies

S’mores = Summer in our family. We love roasting marshmallows to make classic S’mores and pretty much have to try any food that has “S’mores” on the label.  Every Summer we have to make a Dairy Queen trip when they bring back the S’mores Blizzard for a limited time. We love Target’s Market Pantry brand S’mores ice cream, and they’ve even started to sell the flavor year-round to feed our S’mores addiction. Give it a try if you haven’t already! This past Christmas, we even tried Stephen’s S’mores hot chocolate and it was surprisingly yummy. All this to say, a cookie creation that merges our love of S’mores with the beloved chocolate chip cookie was bound to be a hit in this house.

If you can’t find the marshmallow bits at the store, this recipe can be a little bit of work, but trust me when I say that the payoff is totally worth it. Ooey gooey marshmallow, chocolate, and a swirl of graham cracker crumbs. Yum!

We may have a new favorite cookie on our hands…


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 9 graham crackers, finely crushed (1 sleeve of graham crackers usually equals about a cup of crumbs)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup miniature Mallow Bits or torn marshmallow pieces
  • 1.5  cups chopped Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Bar or chocolate chips 
  • 1 tsp salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Using a mixer, cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy.
  3. Add in the vanilla and the eggs one at a time, mixing and scraping down the sides of the bowl.
  4. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Slowly add the dry ingredient mixture into the wet mixture.  Mix until just combined.
  6. Fold in the chocolate and marshmallow bits.
  7. Scoop dough by the spoonful onto a prepared baking sheet (parchment paper or a silicone mat — we love our Silpat!).
  8. Bake for 10 minutes. They may be a little soft in the center but will firm up after resting for a few minutes.

Recipe from Dessert Now Dinner Later

Roasted Vegetable & Orzo Tian

Vegetable Orzo Tian

This recipe is perfect for Spring and Summer as all of the farmer’s markets are opening up and full of fresh zucchini, squash, and tomatoes. With this dish, the fresher the ingredients, the better the flavor will be. I posted an impromptu pic of this dish on Instagram (it was just too pretty not to!) and after many requests decided to share the recipe here.

A good friend who knows me all too well gave me the Cook’s Country One-Pan Wonders cookbook for Christmas this year. I am always in search of quick weeknight dinner options that use fresh ingredients. A few weeks ago, I was feeling a little adventurous one night and decided to try something new. After skimming through the cookbook again, I found this vegetable and orzo tian that I had all of the ingredients for at home. Any recipe that doesn’t require a trip to the grocery store during the witching hour with two kids gets automatic bonus points.

I knew that I loved all of the ingredients in this recipe, but we were a little surprised at how much we enjoyed this dish. The kids opted for chicken nuggets and mac and cheese as usual, but we loved stepping up our dinner game for the night with the Mediterranean flavors in this dish.

Give the Vegetable & Orzo Tian a try this season and leave a comment below to let us know what you think or if you have any fun variations to try!


  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup orzo, uncooked
  • 2-3 Tbs fresh oregano (or 1 tsp dried)
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes (or add as desired)
  • 1 large zucchini, sliced approx. 1/4 thick
  • 1 large yellow squash, sliced approx. 1/4 thick
  • 2-3 large tomatoes, cored & sliced approx. 1/4 thick
  • 1 3/4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 Tbs fresh basil, chopped
  • salt & pepper as desired


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees and place oven rack in middle position. Spray 9 x 13 oven-safe baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Combine 1/2 cup Parmesan, orzo, oregano, garlic, pepper flakes, and 1/4 tsp salt in a bowl. Spread mixture evenly on bottom of baking dish.
  3. Alternate placing zucchini, yellow squash, and tomato in rows on top of the bed of orzo.
  4. Pour broth evenly over the top of vegetables. Bake about 20 minutes until orzo is al dente and most of the broth is absorbed.
  5. Remove dish from oven, increase oven temperature or prepare to broil.
  6. Drizzle veggies with oil, remaining cheese, salt, and pepper.  Cook for about 5 more minutes until slightly browned on top and bubbling around the edges.

Recipe from Cook’s Country One-Pan Wonders Cookbook