I'm daughter to Lissie, sister to Jess, wife to Brien, mom to Hannah, Lily and Eleanor. I am a stay at home mom to my girls, and my free time is dedicated to gardening (I confess I'm still a novice and look to Lissie and Jess for advice), baking and cooking, and card making. I'm doing my part to make the earth a bit greener, trying hard to avoid processed foods and HFCS, and find the "slow food" movement intriguing and inspiring. I love visits to my local farmers' market, fresh produce, reading, getting out in nature, and spending time with my family.


Catholic, homeschooler, lover of books and great wine and an amateur gardening addict.


I'm Melissa aka "Lissie", mother of Rachael and Jessica, and grandmother to a passel of the sweetest children on the planet. I'm a semi-retired public educator and professor who works from home for a small publisher. I am a lover of all things beautiful ... flowers, the mountains, nature scenes, the innocent faces of children, and my rock and fossil collection, to name a few. I enjoy shopping at the farmers' market for fresh foods and then experimenting with new recipes. Good food and good wine delight me. I love to travel so my suitcase is always packed. Like my daughters, I take pleasure in simple things ... clothes drying on the line, tomatoes so fresh they are still hot from the sun, good books, and interesting movies. I'd like to know everything before I die.
Bob's Best Salad

*This is a variation on a Food Network/Emeril's seafood salad recipe. Bob has kept the basics the same but tweaked it here and there and we have never put any meat on it. I love this salad so much that if I had to choose my last meal, this would be part of it.

For a family sized bowl of salad:


1-2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped and minced. Then add it into a bowl with olive oil and red wine vinegar (2:1 ratio or best estimate). Let it sit while you prepare the veggies.


2 heads of hearts of romaine
1 handful of chopped flat leaf parsley
2-3 spring onions, sliced
green olives (to taste, I'd say we use 1/4 cup!)
kalamata olives (also to taste, 1/4 cup for us again)

Once you've chopped all the veggies and tossed them, whisk briskly the dressing and immediately pour over the salad and mix well.

Bananas Soft Serve

I am a weird sort of girl who loves to read about food, loves to peruse cookbooks and food magazines yet I don't really like the mechanics of meal planning and cooking. I just like the idea of good food, I'm rather lazy when it comes to getting it onto my own table. With that said, I follow a few foody blogs, one of which is called Choosing Raw and it is written by a younger woman who lives in NYC and is a raw foodist/vegan. Am I ever going to be a younger woman, living in NYC and choosing to eat a vegan/raw diet? Nope! But her posts are interesting and I find that I am very interested in learning about extreme food lifestyles, whether it is Traditional Foods, Raw Foods, Calorie Restriction or what not. I am impressed that people can choose a diet like that and stick with it over the long term. Raw foodists do seem to be glowing with health, if they manage to squeeze in enough protein and calories (I would imagine you would have to be eating all day long) and I'll admit that I don't feel quite right myself if I don't get at least one serving of greens in a salad every day. Raw food bloggers have also introduced me to green smoothies, something I haven't been brave enough to try but I will, oh I will!

This "recipe" for banana soft serve is so ridiculously easy that it isn't really a recipe at all. You just freeze cut up ripe banana chunks and then whip them into oblivion in a food processor. The result? A little bit of heaven in a bowl. The best replacement for ice cream that I've found - it is the same texture and consistency and surprisingly the banana flavor isn't overpowering considering the entire dish is made out of bananas. I did add a couple tablespoons of milk while processing to make it a bit smoother and Bob thinks adding a bit of chocolate sauce on top would send it over the edge in deliciousness.

You've got to try this!

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