Family Happenings and Blueberry Scones

It’s been a crazy last few weeks which has contributed to my negligence in writing another blog post! I’ve been mentally writing this several days, and have really tried to get it here on the blog. This is the second time that I have sat at the computer to try to complete a post. I keep getting interrupted! You’d think that with just 2 of us in the house the majority of the time that I should be able to do this without interruption.  Guess I’m just not doing it at the right time. Maybe now I can get it done!  🙂

Here is what’s been happening with the family.

For Father’s Day this year I decided to replace our old tried and true automatic drip coffee maker. The old one was a gift to us for our wedding 29 years ago! I think that it is the last of the small-appliance-wedding-gifts that we received. I have burned out more crockpots, toasters, and hand mixers than I can count. The large appliances are are anywhere from 15 years to 25 years old, but the coffee pot has stuck around for 29! But not the carafe! We’ve replaced that more times than can be counted, too!


My sweet Little Man is rapidly approaching his first birthday! His latest accomplishment is crawling!! Time for my girl and her man to baby-proof the house!


Little Miss Mia is loving summer by playing outside in her pool and by jumping on the trampoline. She is doing pretty well as a big sister to sweet little Gracie Mae! Both the girls and their mommy are adjusting to life without Daddy for awhile as he serves our country. We pray daily for him while he is gone.

We are just 18 days out from the Big Day for my officer and his lady! I have my dress and shoes; the venue for the rehearsal dinner is reserved and menu chosen. I’m working on the center pieces for the tables and finalizing the number for the caterer. I can’t believe that this wedding is just around the corner!!

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For a few weeks I found myself falling off the THM wagon and realized that I was just not feeling well. Three weeks ago I got back on that wagon and have worked hard to keep the bad carbs out of my diet. It always amazes me how much better I feel when I eat the THM way!

I discovered this recipe not long ago and knew that I had to give it a try. The original recipe called for strawberries, but last week a friend gave me lots of blueberries! Using blueberries instead of the strawberries made a wonderful scone! Try it yourself using any of the berries. You will be glad that you did!

Easter Weekend and Berry Breakfast Crisp

Hello, everyone! I am finally taking the time to sit down and write a new post…this time including a new recipe!

But first—Easter weekend! I was thrilled that Barbi and her sweet little family were able to drive here for Easter! They not only got to spend time with us all, but they got to meet Baby Gracie! The only disappointing part of the weekend was that my 2Lt was not able to be here since he is still half-way across the country in training!

Here are a few obligatory pictures from the weekend!

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This morning I decided to have something different for breakfast than my usual sunny-side up eggs and fruit. I have been trying hard to get back on track with eating in a healthy manner since the guys brought in lots of sweets and other carbs over the weekend. And of course, I served our traditional Pavlova for Easter dessert!

This recipe makes one serving. It calls for baking it in the oven, but I used the microwave for about one minute. Either way is just fine.

  • 1 cup mixed berries (frozen or fresh)
  • 3 tbsp. low-carb flour blend (I used my own flour blend of oat, almond, and flax)
  • 1 tbsp. unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • dash of salt
  • 1 tbsp. sweetener (I used Pyure)
  • 1/2 scoop protein powder
  • 1-1/2 tbsp. coconut oil, melted

Place the berries in the bottom of a small baking dish. Mix remaining dry ingredients in a small bowl and then stir in coconut oil until it is a crumbly mixture. Sprinkle over the top of the fruit. Bake at 375 degrees for about 25 minutes, or put into microwave for about one minute or until the berries burst.

Serve topped with about 1/4 cup Greek yogurt.

Fruit Pizza

We had a fun July 4th on Saturday and tried to keep our eating on-plan through out the day. Unfortunately, the church picnic is where we fell off the wagon! It is so hard to eat right at a wonderful church buffet! But we are back on track today and hoping for a good week of proper eating habits! Tim and I can both tell a difference in how we feel when we eat the wrong type of foods!

My sweet Mia Joy is 10 months old now! We enjoyed having her and her mommy join us at the picnic Saturday. We missed her daddy who had to work! She was very interested in eating Mommy’s BBQ sandwich! With only 4 teeth, that’s just not possible yet!

027I discovered this amazing fruit pizza recipe several months ago but never made it until Saturday. It tastes wonderful! As you can see, I switched out the fruits from what is listed on the main recipe. I also used my flour blend of almond meal, oat flour, flax and coconut flour instead of using only almond flour. One other change was to add 1-1/2 tsp of Truvia to the cream cheese mixture to give it a little more sweetness.

You can find the recipe here. I highly recommend it! It is very easy to make and is delicious!


THM Friendly Lemon-Blueberry Poppy Seed Muffins

I love lemon-flavored breads and desserts especially in the summer! My mom made the BEST lemon meringue pie, and I find that I often crave it during the hot summer months. She was a pro at making pies and pie crusts! Last night we were remembering Mom and her wonderful baking skills. While I remembered her lemon meringue and pecan pies, the hubby remembered her peach pies! It really didn’t matter what kind of pie Mom made. They were all delicious!

I needed to take some muffins to a brunch last weekend and desired to make something lemony. After doing a little bit of research, I realized that there are tons of recipes for lemon or lemon-poppy seed breads and muffins. I found a basic recipe and then tried my best to make it THM friendly. While they didn’t rise like I would have liked them to, they tasted fabulous and received rave reviews!

1/2 c. butter, softened

2/3 c. truvia-blend sweetener

2 eggs

1-1/3 c. flour (I used a mix of oat flour; almond flour, and coconut flour)

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

2 tbsp. poppy seeds

zest from 1 large lemon

1/2 c. Greek yogurt (sour cream or buttermilk is fine, too)

2 tbsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. vanilla

36-40 fresh blueberries

Place paper liners into a 12-cup muffin pan. In a large mixing bowl cream butter and sweetener. Add eggs and beat well. In a separate bowl, combine all the dry ingredients including the lemon zest and the poppy seeds. Combine the Greek yogurt, lemon juice and vanilla. Mix well. Add half the dry ingredients to the butter/sweetener mixture and blend well. Then add half the yogurt mixture and blend well. Repeat using the remaining dry ingredients and yogurt mixture. Spoon into the prepared pan. Drop about 3 blueberries on top of each muffin. Bake at 350* for about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Let cool and enjoy!

Blueberry-Fig Sour Cream Pound Cake

When I came to the blog earlier today, I realized that I am just 421 views short of what I had set for my year-end goal! Several months ago I decided that through new posts and sharing of the blog, I would set 15,000 views as the goal to reach by the end of 2014.  Thanks to all those who have recently viewed this post, that goal will probably be surpassed by the end of September!!  Last weekend I was privileged to help as part of the Blue Shirt Army during matriculation day at The Citadel.  I enjoyed getting to encourage and help new parents whose children have chosen the road less traveled for their college career.  Many of them have viewed the post so that they can better send care packages to their knobs!  Here I am with my cadet. I can’t believe that he is now a senior!!! It seems like just yesterday that he was a scared knob and I was the one being encouraged by others in the Blue Shirt Army!


Last week I was asked to make a pound cake for a ladies gathering at our church.  I’ve not made many pound cakes…not at all.  I figured it couldn’t be too hard, but I would need a recipe.  I got out my recently-acquired Better Homes and Gardens cookbook and found a recipe that I could work with.  As you know, I almost always change up recipes!!  We have figs coming in now and blueberries in the freezer…the perfect combination for a delicious cake!   I will put (*) beside the ingredients that I added to the original recipe.

1/2 c. butter

3 eggs

1/2 c. sour cream

1-1/2 c. flour

1/4 tsp. baking powder

1/8 tsp. baking soda

1 c. sugar

1/2 tsp. vanilla

*1/2 tbsp. lemon juice

*1/2 c. crushed figs

*1/2 c. blueberries

Bring the butter, eggs, and sour cream to room temperature. Combine the flour, baking powder and baking soda in a medium size bowl and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, beat butter on medium to high speed for about 30 seconds. Gradually add the sugar, beating about 10 minutes or until very light and fluffy. (I used my stand mixer and did indeed beat the mixture for 10 minutes.) Add vanilla and lemon juice.  Add eggs one at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition and scraping the bowl often.

Add flour mixture and sour cream to egg mixture alternately, beating on low to medium speed after each addition just until combined.  Stir together the crushed figs and the blueberries.  Gently fold fruit into the cake batter.  Pour into a greased and floured 9x5x3-inch loaf pan.  Bake at 325 degrees for about 60-75 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Cool on a rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely.  Serves 10.


Blueberry Walnut Upside-Down Cake

Since having an empty nest is becoming more the norm lately, the hubby and I decided to have friends over for Sunday dinner this past weekend.  The menu was not a problem because we still enjoy our traditional Sunday dinner of roast beef, mashed potatoes and gravy, and broccoli with cheese sauce.  However, I don’t always serve dessert. I needed to find a good, but easy recipe using what I had on hand.

My thoughts turned to a cake, but I didn’t want something super sweet with icing.  I found a pineapple upside-down cake recipe in my favorite Fannie Farmer cookbook, made a few changes since I was without pineapple, and ended up with this amazing dessert!

This recipe would also make up well as individual servings using a cupcake pan.  After melting the butter and adding the brown sugar and juice, spoon a small amount into each cupcake space. Sprinkle with a few blueberries and spoon some batter over the berries to about 2/3 full. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

12 tbsp. butter, divided

3/4 cup to 1 c. brown sugar

1/4 c. orange juice  (lemon juice might be great, too!)

about 1 c. blueberries

1/3 to 1/2 c. chopped walnuts

1/2 c. milk

1 egg

1-1/2 c. flour  (can use 3/4 c. almond flour with 3/4 c. all-purpose flour)

2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 c. granulated sugar

Melt 4 tbsp butter in a 9 or 10-inch cake pan. (I would use the larger size, since mine over-flowed a little bit during the baking.)   Stir in brown sugar and continue to stir over low heat until it dissolves. Remove from heat and stir in the orange juice. Sprinkle blueberries and walnuts over the top and set aside.

Melt remaining 8 tbsp. butter in a small pan. Remove from the heat and stir in milk and egg, beating well. Mix flour, baking powder, salt, and granulated sugar in bowl. Add milk-egg mixture and beat until smooth. Pour over blueberries and bake for about 35 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Let cook in pan for about 10 minutes, then turn out onto a plate, fruit side up. Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!


Patriotic Desserts for the 4th

Happy Independence Day, everyone!!  I do hope you all are having a wonderful day remembering America’s history on this special day.  In spite of the fact that we seem to be  losing our freedoms, we have much to be thankful for here in the States.

Our celebrations have been postponed until the weekend because of the amazing amount of rain that we are receiving…and have been receiving for about 18 hours now! There is no thunder, no lightning, no wind…just buckets of rain coming down.

So if you are stuck indoors today, head to your kitchen to try some of these fabulous desserts shared from my niece’s blog.

Double-Berry Pie

This past Saturday found me doing a bit more baking than I have done in recent weeks.  I made my weekly coffee cake and sour dough loaves, a blueberry butter cream cake (from  for our church’s VBS this week, and this amazing pie!

Since one of my hubby’s favorite desserts is blueberry pie, I decided to make one for him as a Father’s Day dessert using not only our own blueberries, but also some of our own blackberries.  I sort of followed a blueberry pie recipe that I found in my Fanny Farmer cookbook.

pastry dough for a 9-inch, two-crust pie

4 c. fresh berries…I used 2 cups blueberries and 2 cups blackberries

3 tbsp. cornstarch (more would have been better since my berries were so juicy!)

1 c. sugar

1/8 tsp. salt

1 tbsp. lelmon juice

1 tbsp. butter

1 egg, beaten with 1 tbsp. water

1/2 tsp. sugar

Line a 9-inch pie pan with half of the pastry dough.  Wash the berries and put into a mixing bowl.  Add the cornstarch, sugar, salt and lemon juice.  Gently toss to coat the berries. Pile the mixture into the lined pie pan and dot with butter. Roll out the top crust and drape it over the fruit. Crimp or flute the edges and cut several vents in the top.  Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes. Lower the temperature to 350 degrees and bake for 30 more minutes.  Remove pie from oven and brush with egg wash; bake for another 5 minutes.  Brush with egg wash again and bake for 5 more minutes.  Brush with egg wash a 3rd time and sprinkle with the 1/2 tsp. sugar. Bake for 5 more minutes.   Cool on a rack.  Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped topping.

Light Lunch for a Summer Day

I just looked at our site stats and discovered we are only 27 views shy of 5000 total views to the blog!  Pretty amazing for just over 2 years!!  Who knows? Maybe today will bring us over the top!

One of my absolute favorite lunches for a hot summer day is cottage cheese and fruit.  I love cottage cheese with crushed pineapple or peaches.  Not having either of those in my pantry or fridge today, I chose some of our fresh blueberries and some strawberries….the perfect patriotic lunch for this Flag Day!

Road Trip and Blueberry Tea

On Monday evening we arrived home after a trip out to San Antonio, Texas.  Believe me, it was a l-o-n-g trip!  It has been about 4 years since I’ve done such a road trip, but I grew up taking road trips just about every summer with my parents, sister, and brother.  We lived in New Jersey, and my dad wanted to make sure that we kids knew our mom’s family out in western Iowa and eastern South Dakota.  I have lots of memories wrapped up in those trips!

I won’t bore you with every little detail of this trip, but I will share with you just a few observations and highlights.

1.  We drove over 2500 miles without a single issue with our vehicle…no car trouble at all.  This is truly a blessing.

2.  Taking road trips with teenage boys is much easier on the nerves than taking road trips with small children. I heard “Are we there yet?” only once…and it was in jest!

3.  Even though AAA tells you that the trip should take about 16.5 hours, plan on 24.  AAA forgets to add in stops.

4.  Texas is HUGE!  We entered near Houston (also huge) and still had to drive close to 275 miles just to get to San Antonio.

5.  The wind never stops blowing in Texas.

6.  Lackland Air Force Base is also huge.  Even though we had a map of the base, I was always getting turned around and wanting to go left when we should have gone either right or straight ahead.

7.  The military is all about hurry up and wait.

8.  The Air Force is good to its airmen! Four of the 6 of us got in free to Sea World. The other two were discounted rates.

9.  The Alamo is NOT out in the middle of nowhere like it was back in 1836.

10.  Seeing my boy for the first time in over 8 weeks was priceless!  It was definitely worth every mile.

I noticed just before we left for our trip that my blueberries were getting ripe and ready for picking. Because of the warmer winter we had, the berries are ready about a month early. I picked about a pint the day before our trip and put them in the freezer.  Yesterday I went out and got almost another pint.  Some of our bushes are looking poorly, and I don’t know what is wrong with them. Those that are producing are giving us some nice looking ones!

Having grown up in the south, I absolutely love sweet iced tea!!  It is quite refreshing on a hot summer day.  After picking the blueberries the other day, I decided to try making some blueberry iced tea.  I don’t have a recipe, so I just sort of figured it out as I went along.  The result was wonderful!

7 tea bags

1 quart water

1-1/2 cups sugar

1 cup fresh blueberries

1 cup water

Place the teabags in a saucepan with 1 quart water.  Bring it to a simmer and remove from heat. Cover and let teabags steep for a while.  (I’ve been known to forget them!  Ha!) I think the tea tastes better the longer the teabags sit.

Combine the berries with the one cup water.  Bring to a boil and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Pour through a sieve and press the berries so that you get some of the pulp but not the skins.  You should have about 1-1/2 cups of berry juice.

In a one-gallon pitcher, combine sugar and tea.  Stir to dissolve sugar. Add blueberry juice and enough water to make about 3/4 gallon.  I made a whole gallon, but one son thought it would have been better with less water.  Stir and refrigerate.  Stir before serving over ice. Enjoy!