Some flavors just stay with you forever. Some flavors have the magical culinary power to transform you to a different time, place, age, and mindset. Blueberry pancakes bring me to Nickerson State Park, peppermint will always make me think of Christmas, certain alcohols bring me back to Westfield State, and mac and cheese will always make me feel 6 years old.

Nolan and I are certainly not beginners in the kitchen and we often have mouthwatering ingredients on hand. But yesterday I found myself staring at a meat infested freezer and a fridge overflowing with fresh fruits and veggies only to reach into the pantry and pull out the box of Kraft mac & cheese that I have been craving all week.

I decide to class it up a bit and give it some reminiscence of nutrition.  For one, I prepared it with skim milk and about 1/2 the “cheese” packet and without the butter. I  reached into the depths of the fridge and found some leftover hot dogs from this weekend’s cookout which I added to the mix (that basically is the “butter and remaining cheese packet” which I omitted). Then I turned to my trusty bag of Shaw’s mixed veggies to add some color and nutrition.





I know this isn’t a ground breaking culinary creation, but it’s a great last minute meal that is sure to satisfy the 6 yr old is all of us. 🙂

Question of the Day:

What flavors tansform you back to your childhood? For me it’s mac & cheese, tuna helper, and brownies.


Before Baby Bucket List

….No I’m not pregnant. Let’s get that out of the way ASAP!

I recently stumbled upon Emily’s post titled “Before We Have a Baby” where she talked about all the things she hopes to do before starting a family with her new husband. It fit so nicely into my current situation that I just had to create a post of my own!

Nolan and I have been married over 7 months now and we inevitably get the frequent question most newlyweds do…. “So when are you two going to start a family?!” With the birth of our niece last month, the questions have been rolling in about our future bundle of joy. Although my new niece is freaking ADORABLE and her parents are beyond ecstatic, we respond while stifling the terror in our eyes with ” A few years at least.”

In today’s world more and more people are waiting until their mid-late 30’s to have children. While we are not planning to wait THAT long, there are many things we wish to accomplish before we break out the bottles.

1. Get a house- Buy, rent, whatever the circumstances, we want a space to call home. We have already outgrown our current place, but the thought of moving makes me want to throw up. I HATE moving, and I plan to do it as few times as financially and humanly possible. Nolan and I have very strict expectations for our future house. It needs to have the following- A big kitchen, a porch or deck, a backyard, a fire pit, and a meat freezer in the garage. Pretty tall order huh? Now most of these things we can add ourselves so when the time is right, I’m sure we will find what we are looking for.

2. Say goodbye to Sallie Mae. Ok, not goodbye, goodbye, but maybe wave to her from a distance. Paying off our student loans is priority one right now. We currently pay a combined $1,200 a month for past education and until that number is substantially lower, nothing else on our list can be accomplished.

3. Travel- Not to the Swiss Alps or anything, but we want to enjoy the time we have to be a bit selfish and see/eat new things.

4. Get a dog. We desperately want a canine companion to care for. Once we have the time and space, we plan to get 1 or 2 rescue dogs.

5. Grow Up. I’m still a Toys R Us Kid! I hardly consider myself an adult, and Nolan’s nowhere near the ballpark. Ok, that’s a gross exaggeration  but we still enjoy being a bit selfish and lazy. We are infamous for waiting until the last minute to get things done, letting the laundry pile up, and dishes? just laughable. We currently enjoy the ability to be immature, and that certainly needs to change before we are responsible for another life.

Now, is anyone truly ready to have a baby? Probably not. Is it imperative that all these things get accomplished before we have a baby? No.  Would it be nice? Very. Are we going to try? Yes!

So, my question of the day, what do/did you hope to accomplish before starting a family? Mothers and fathers, is there anything you wish you had done before procreating?