TBT + Are you celebrating Valentine's Day?

Though I love all things red and pink for Valentines Day, we typically don't do much for the occasion. Last week we had a date night and this weekend we will be snowmobiling with my sisters, future BIL, cousins, aunt and uncle. So probably not so romantic this year. For the last couple of years we've just made good steaks and enjoyed wine and dessert at home. That's a great Valentine's in my opinion! We were never into the big dinner out where restaurants are overcrowded and menu prices and jacked out the wazoo (is that a phrase?) just for this one day. Although last week's date night definitely gave me a hankering to go out for a nice dinner again soon :)

We also don't exchange gifts, save for cards and maybe a candy bar or two. This year, I have a few sweet valentine shirts for P and she'll be getting a Sofia the First toy mailbox filled with pocky, stickers and other trinkets (--->why are kids Valentine's treats so adorable? Curse you Target One Spot).

I also may be enjoying a brownie batter doughnut tomorrow in honor of the holiday. Just sayin'.


Do you celebrate Valentine's Day? What's your favorite way to celebrate?


tbt above: last year/cherry oatmeal cookies/blood orange loaf cake/cinnamon sugar pretzels/red velvet oreo cheesecakes

TBT: Greek Layer Dip

Once upon a time, when I was just a married gal, my husband and I would really go all out for football Sunday. We'd spend the morning shopping and prepping an array of dips, baked chips, appetizers and cocktails. It would usually just be the two of us with more food than we could possibly eat, but we would have so much fun cooking together in the kitchen, dressing in our respective team jerseys, settling in for a day on the couch and picking on yummy game day eats all the live long day.

It was a simpler time.

Shaun and I stayed in for the Superbowl and it was a production. We ordered food in, which was a smart move on our part. But the third member of our party, lil' Miss P, refused to stop chatting through the entire first half, had a few meltdowns causing us to continually have to get up and deal with, and fall behind on watching. This also led to not being able to go on social media or answer any text messages or group chats about the game, since it was so close and we were so behind.

So...watching sports is not quite the event that it used to be. Instead, we had Frozen on the iPad in the background and toys all over the living room. We were both too lazy to go out for more chips, so we had a container of onion dip with nothing to dip. Luckily, we had a lot of booze leftover from Penelope's birthday dinner the night before. Score 1 for parents.

One of my favorite dips that we used to make back in the day is this Greek layer dip.


It is super fresh and full of amazing Mediterranean flavors. It does take a bit of work, since you have to brown the meat that goes into it. I don't recommend skimping on that part, but if you are in a pinch, this dip would probably also be awesome if it was meatless.

I love this dip because it also feels like a meal. And personally, I could and would choose to eat dip for dinner for all the meals if it were socially acceptable. Maybe when I rule the world, that can be a mandate. Dip for everyone!

But seriously, this dip is filled with hummus, tzatzikes, onions, tomatoes, olives {!!!}, lettuce, ground turkey...what is better than that? Though football is over, I think I'm going to make this dip this weekend. Maybe for Sunday dinner while we watch the Grammy's...that would be normal, right?

What are your favorite dips?

Did you watch the Superbowl?


TBT: 2 Years Ago Nostalgia

Monday marks Penelope's 2nd birthday. I have such nostalgia this time of year for 2 years ago when I was awaiting her arrival. Couped up in my apartment while Shaun drove to work every morning, I had set up a back pillow and towel on the couch and enjoyed my last days of alone time. I took short walks in the mornings for a decaf coffee at Dunkin and a little treat, often a brownie batter donut, afraid to venture too far away from home should I unexpectedly go into fierce and quick labor. I worked from home and answered daily texts from friends, family and co-workers, asking if I thought maybe today would be the day? I joyfully gave my symptoms of the day and wondered the same myself.  It all feels like a lifetime ago, yet I remember it like yesterday.

For today's Throwback Thursday I thought it would be fun to link back to some of the posts leading up to Penelope's birth day, and her actually birth story.


My due date + final nursery reveal

Penelope's birth story i/ii/iii

These citrus loaf cakes that I made to freeze before her arrival

Evidence of my crazy nesting

What I packed in my hospital bag

What I packed in baby's hospital bag


We decided not to have a big party for her birthday this year (we did that for her 1st birthday last year) and instead will have a small dinner and birthday cake with our parents and siblings this weekend. We are also planning a Frozen movie viewing with a few of the kids in our building, but that's about it.

It's crazy how fast time flies and I keep trying to pinpoint when Penelope began becoming more of a little girl than of a little baby. I feel so lucky and my heart overflows with love for this little girl. I never knew how much I'd love being a Mom until she came along. And so for the next few days, I can't wait to celebrate my sweet little P and shed a few happy tears for the light she's brought to my life.

Happy Throwback Thursday!