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Fresh Fruit Waffle Cones Make an Easy Summer Fruit Snack

Are you looking for easy summer fruit snack ideas that your kids will LOVE? Make them Fresh Fruit Waffle Cones and check out this the other great ideas to make eating fruit fun this summer!fresh fruit waffle cones - fruit in cone on a platter

Fresh Fruit Waffle Cones Make an Easy Summer Fruit Snack

Does anyone really have trouble getting kids to eat fruit? I sure don’t. In fact, I have to sometimes yell at my kids for eating too much fruit. They’re eating me out of house and home right now! It’s hard to get upset over eating too much fruit, but sometimes, enough is enough already.

sliced fruit for Fresh Fruit Waffle Cones

That’s one reason I love these fresh fruit cones. It stretches the fruit a little bit further! Instead of each kid eating one peach, one apple, a quart of blueberries, and a bunch of grapes, I can cut up a reasonable amount of everything and serve them a little bit less. They really don’t need to eat all day long!

My kids love fruit in waffle cones. Waffle cones make everything better, don’t you think? Maybe if I was a really nice mom I would get all fancy and dip the cone in chocolate and sprinkles, but I’m not really all that nice. 😉

fresh fruit cones

Aren’t they pretty? To make these, I just filled medium-sized waffle cones with blueberries, blackberries, grapes, strawberries, and peaches, kiwis, and apples.  Then we ate them with fresh whipped cream. So tasty! the sky’s the limit as far of what you can put in these fun fruit cones – and instead of whipped cream, you could also add ice cream. These fresh fruit filled waffle cones are totally easy and versatile.

I’m sure you don’t really need a recipe to learn how to make fresh fruit waffle cones, but just in case, here you go!

Easy Summer Fruit Snack
Save RecipeSave Recipe


  • 1 cup grapes
  • 1 cup berries
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1 cup apple, sliced
  • 1 cup peaches, sliced
  • Waffle cones
  • Fresh whipped cream, optional


  1. Clean and prep all fruits.
  2. Add to waffle cones.
  3. Serve with fresh whipping cream, if desired.
  4. Enjoy!

Looking for more summer fruit snack ideas? Here are several to enjoy!

frozen srawberry yogurt cupcakes

Strawberry Yogurt Cupcakes

Layered Fruit “Cake”

Healthy 4 Ingredient Fruit Dip

What fruits would you put in these delightful fresh fruit waffle cones?

Are you looking for easy summer fruit snack ideas that your kids will LOVE? Make them Fresh Fruit Waffle Cones and check out this the other great ideas to make eating fruit fun this summer!


Delicious Omaha Restaurants to Try This Weekend!

Earlier in April I was treated to a surprisingly delicious culinary tour of Omaha Restaurants. On this amazing trip, a lovely group of bloggers was treated to some of the best restaurants in Omaha! If you’re looking for a new restaurant to try this weekend, all of these are great ideas! And if you need a reason to add Omaha to your bucket list, here are 10 delicious reasons to visit this fun city! I recommend wearing stretchy pants. 😉

Fresh Scallops at Dante Omaha Restaurants

*This post is sponsored by Visit Omaha, but all delicious opinions are mine!*

Delicious Omaha Restaurants to Try This Weekend!

If you think the Midwest culinary scene is boring  – let me assure that it’s not! Local, fresh, innovative, and very diverse! That’s how I would describe the food scene in Omaha which boasts an insanely large number of restaurants!

Every one of the Omaha restaurants featured in this list serve delicious food, wonderful drinks, and a fun atmosphere. If you have the chance, you should try them all! For a Culinary Feast, here are 10 of the best restaurants in Omaha to add to your list of places to try!

Dante OmahaDante

Located in West Omaha, Dante is a restaurant you must try! Chef and owner Nick Strawhecker provides an authentic Italian experience, serving a delicious Italian-only wine list, authentic wood-fired Neapolitan pizza, and a seasonal, rotating menu using fresh produce from local farmers. If Nick is serving up scallops the night you go, I highly recommend eating them! So, so good!!

Reservations are recommended at this beautiful restaurant, so click here to make one!

Blackstone Reuben from Cresent Moon Alehouse - one of my favorite Omaha Restaurants

Crescent Moon Ale House–

The Blackstone Reuben served at Crescent Moon wins the prize for Omaha’s Best Reuben by the Omaha World Herald. It was originally created at the famous Blackstone Hotel right around the corner from Crescent Moon and is really good. I thought I didn’t like Reubens, but after trying the sandwich at the Crescent Moon, I am singing a new song!

Make sure to head out to Crescent Moon for a delicious Reuben and a craft beer. They have an amazing collection of beers that every beer lover will enjoy AND a yearly Reuben Fest! Don’t miss it this year.

Stirnella Bar & Kitchen

Stirnella Bar & Kitchen

Stirnella describes itself as a refined gastro pub with an approachable global menu. It’s a beautiful restaurant and bar. And, I love that it also sources fresh and local ingredients and embraces its Nebraska roots. I recommend trying the burratta with grilled peasant bread and the spätzle with onion confit and roasted mushrooms! Delicious!!

You can also make a reservation to eat at Stirnella. Click here to reserve a table online.

Le Bouillon Omaha

Le Bouillon Restaurant and Raw Bar

If you’re looking for a fun casual French dining experience, Le Bouillon in the heart of the Old Market is the place to go! Featuring one of a kind art and a fun bar, we really enjoyed learning about the history of this restaurant and sampling their delicious sandwiches and fries. The bartender also makes delicious drinks.

Make your reservation here.

Monarch Prime Omaha - Looking for some delicious Omaha Restaurants to try this weekend? This list of 10 restaurants for drinks, meals, and sweet treats includes some of best restaurants in Omaha! Be sure to add them to your list of places to try and make it to all of them!Monarch Prime

Located in the beautiful Hotel Deco in downtown Omaha, Monarch Prime can be described as a modern steakhouse featuring their own dry-aging program and delicious seasonal ingredients sourced from local farmers. Monarch Prime serves lunch and dinner and daily, as well as a Sunday brunch.

You’ll also want a reservation at Monarch Prime. Details on making one are here.

Looking for Delicious Drinks?

In addition to the drinks I mentioned above, the following restaurants in Omaha also serve up an amazing drink! Be sure to check out:Brickway Brewery & DistilleryBrickway Brewery & Distillery

Brickway Brewery & Distillery is the perfect place to take the ultimate beer and spirits connoisseur! Located around the corner from Le Bouillon Restaurant in Omaha’s Old Market, Brickway is proud to distill and brew some of Omaha’s best craft drinks. They make a mean flight of Moscow Mules and their pretzel is delicious. Sign up to take a tour and learn first hand how Brickway approaches spirit distilling.

Howard Street Wine Merchant in Omaha

Howard Street Wine Merchant

Looking for a delicious bottle of wine? Make sure to stop in a Howard Street Wine Merchant for free tasting and a nice selection of wines to take home. Howard Street Wine Merchant is accessible through Le Bouillon Restaurant and Raw Bar and is a fun place to spend a few minutes on a rainy afternoon!

Laka Lono Omaha


For a fun experience, make sure to head downstairs to LAKA LONO Rum Club. This fun tiki bar boasts an amazing bar experience with fun seating and lots of rum based drinks. For the ultimate experience, go with a group and try the Volcano Bowl! You will enjoy this flaming group drink.

For a Sweet Treat:

The Cordial Cherry in Omaha

The Cordial Cherry

The Cordial Cherry is a confectionery that sells fine artisan chocolates. If you like chocolates and chocolate covered cherries, you must stop in and visit this cute little shop located next to Dante. As the name suggests, the specialty here is handmade chocolate covered cordial cherries, decorated into the cutest little works of art. They’re almost too pretty to eat, but not really. Make sure to pop in when you go to Dante!

coneflower creamery in omaha

Coneflower Creamery
For a delicious ice cream treat, you have to head over to Coneflower Creamery! Located in the Blackstone District, this cute little ice cream shop’s motto is Farm to Cone Ice Cream and it is absolutely delicious. I really love Brian Langbehn’s commitment to local. He’s the founder, chef, and scoopologist at Coneflower Creamery and is committed to the highest quality ingredients sourced from local farms. I can attest that the homemade Smore’s Ice Cream treat is absolute perfection!

For the Ultimate Omaha Culinary Experience!

cooking class at Provisions by the Grey Plume

If you want the ultimate Omaha culinary experience, sign up for a cooking class at Provisions by the Grey Plume with Chef Clayton. Making homemade pasta was amazing. But the  the upcoming classes look fabulous too. A Couples Pho’ Class class and a sausage making class would be so much fun! Chef Clayton is knowledgeable and entertaining, and the food we made was delicious. Learn about all the classes Chef Clayton teaches here!

Another really fun way to experience Omaha’s culinary scene is to sign up for a tour with Omaha Culinary Tours. OCT arranges the culinary tour, and you eat! Like steaks? Take the Classic Steakhouse Tour. Want to try craft brews? Take the Brews and Bites Tour. They’ll drive you to and from each location on the trip and take care of all the ordering ahead of time. Prepare for a lot of fun, laughter, history, and delicious food. The prices are pretty reasonable so sign up for one today!

If you liked this list of some of the best restaurants in Omaha, you might be surprised by all the amazing activities your family will love in Omaha too. Check out this Weekend Getaway to Omaha post and start planning your Omaha getaway!

What do you think are the best restaurants in Omaha? I’d love to hear!Looking for some delicious Omaha Restaurants to try this weekend? This list of 10 restaurants for drinks, meals, and sweet treats includes some of best restaurants in Omaha! Be sure to add them to your list of places to try and make it to all of them!

New Orleans Hot Muffuletta Sandwich Recipe

Treat yourself to a taste of New Orleans with this Hot Muffuletta Sandwich Recipe! It’s quick to make and delicious to eat. Best of all, you can make these sandwiches in advance and freeze them! Add these ingredients to your shopping list and enjoy the wonderful flavors of New Orleans you’ll experience with my take on the Central Grocery Muffuletta Recipe.Pining for New Orleans? This Hot Muffuletta Sandwich Recipe is perfect! It's quick to make and delicious to eat. Add these ingredients to your shopping list and enjoy the wonderful flavors of New Orleans you'll experience with this Central Grocery Muffuletta Recipe.

Many thanks to Ken’s Dressings for sponsoring this freezer friendly sandwich recipe. All opinions are mine. #KensDressing

New Orleans Hot Muffuletta Sandwich Recipe

It’s that time of year when life goes absolutely bonkers for me. With four kids who run track, are active in spring ball and have lots of music lessons, nights and weekends fill up. Every year I think our schedule will be less hectic, but it never is. Life is always crazy for us in the spring, which is why recipes like this one come in very handy.

To survive this crazy season, I really rely on the homemade food I keep in my freezer. Otherwise, it’s ball park popcorn for dinner almost every night. Been there, done that, don’t judge. Since I started cooking freezer friendly recipes, though, it’s so much easier to have a dinner ready on very busy nights. Freezer sandwiches are a family favorite, and this Muffuletta is absolute perfection.New Orleans and Central Grocery

Central Grocery Muffuletta Recipe

I first tried this sandwich at Central Grocery a few years ago when I was in New Orleans for Shiftcon, a wonderful conference I go to every year. If you get the chance to try the original, I highly recommend it!! If it’s not possible to get to New Orleans, though, never fear. It’s easy to make something very similar to the Central Grocery Muffuleta Recipe. Here’s what you need to know:

This sandwich is made on Italian bread with Italian meats and cheeses, but the icing on the cake so to speak, is the Italian olive salad. I love the olives on this sandwich. So good! I can’t find a great olive salad in my Iowa grocery stores, but I’ve found it’s very easy to make my own. And it only takes a few minutes if you get the right ingredients.

Muffuletta Sandwich made with Ken's Simplfy Vinaigrette

To make an olive salad, I use pre-sliced green olives with pimentos, add in a few spices, fresh garlic, and three tablespoons of Ken’s Simply Vinaigrette Garlic and Basil. The longer you can let the salad sit for the flavors to really come together, the better it will be. But I’ve made it only a few minutes ahead of time before and it’s still good.

Ken’s Simply Vinaigrette Garlic and Basil works so well in this Muffuletta sandwich recipe. It’s a fresh and flavorful dressing that is just as good on a simple salad as it is on this easy freezer friendly recipe.  Ken’s is a family owned business that traces its roots to Ken’s Steak House, a longstanding Boston-area favorite since the 1940s.  Ken’s new lineup of Simply Vinaigrette dressings is made without artificial flavors, preservatives or sweeteners and are very tasty. With over 60 winning dressing combinations, you’re sure to find a variety of Ken’s to suit your taste buds.

muffuletta sandwich recipe

After you make the flavorful olive salad, all you need to do is find the right bread, meats, and cheese, and get layering! I like to heat the final sandwich in the oven to get the cheese all melty. This step is different from Central Grocery Muffuletta recipe – they instead smash their sandwich for several hours with a heavy pan! I don’t personally do that, but if you want to, be my guest!

Printable Hot Central Discount Muffuletta Recipe



1701 cal


147 g


42 g


78 g
Click Here For Full Nutrition, Exchanges, and My Plate Info

Yields 4 -6 servings

New Orleans Hot Muffuletta Sandwich Recipe

A freezer friendly hot sandwich, perfect if you like the flavors of New Orleans, and great for busy evenings.

5 minPrep Time

15 minCook Time

20 minTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe
Recipe Image


    For the olive salad
  • 10-ounce jar green olives with pimientos, drained and chopped (or buy one that's already prechopped)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons Ken's Simply Vinaigrette Garlic & Basil
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • For the Sandwiches
  • 4-6 sesame seed topped rolls, or one 10" Italian sesame seed topped round loaf
  • 1/4 lb Genoa Salami
  • 1/4 lb Capicola or 1/4 lb deli ham
  • 1/4 lb Mortadella
  • 1/8 lb Sliced Mozzarella
  • 1/8 lb Provolone Cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine chopped olives, dried oregano, minced garlic, fresh parsley, and Ken's Simply Vinaigrette Garlic & Basil dressing in a small bowl. Stir until combined.
  3. Slice the bread and top with the olive salad - make sure to spread the oil mix from the olive salad on the top and bottom of the bread.
  4. Then add the cheese, then the meat.
  5. Wrap the sandwiches in aluminum foil and bake for 15 minutes or until the cheese is nice and melty.
  6. Enjoy!
  7. Freezer Options
  8. If you want to freeze these, just wrap them and freeze. Let them thaw in your freezer overnight and cook as directed above. Or, place them in the freezer completely frozen and cook them for about 25-30 minutes.


Note: if you'd rather eat this sandwich in the traditional manner, don't bother heating it. My family loves the heated sandwiches though, and I like that it's freezer friendly.

Have you tried a Muffuletta sandwich before? If not, you should especially since it is so easy to make thanks to Ken’s delicious salad dressings! Many thanks to Ken’s for sponsoring this post. Please connect with them on their website, facebook, instagram, pinterest, and youtube.

If you liked this freezer friendly oven sandwich recipe, you might like these too:

Our favorite taco meat – perfect for the freezer

Spinach Mozzarella meatloaf

Another Easy Oven Sandwich recipe

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Last updated: May 24, 2018

One Meal a Day For the Planet Eating Challenge

What is veganism? Curious about vegan travel? Want to join along in the One Meal A Day Eating Challenge? This post will tell you about going vegan from a non-vegan perspective. Why, how, and travel tips for vegans. You’ll get it all in this post!What is veganism? Curious about vegan travel? Want to join along in the One Meal A Day Eating Challenge? This post will tell you about going vegan from a non-vegan perspective. Why, how, and travel tips for vegans. You'll get it all in this post!

*This post is sponsored by One Meal a Day for the Planet. All opinions are mine.*

One Meal a Day For the Planet Eating Challenge

I was inspired to join the One Meal a Day for the Planet Eating Challenge because of actress, mother, and author, Suzy Amis Cameron. Her new book, OMD: Add One Plant-Based Meal Every Day to Save Your Health, Save Your Waistline, Save the Planet (coming out in the fall of 2018) challenges people to make small dietary changes. For many of us, going full vegan is just not possible or attractive for one reason or the other. Instead of telling people it’s all or nothing, Cameron advocates swapping out just one meal a day an idea I can fully support.

When I met up with the One Meal a Day Crew at Shiftcon back in February, I knew I wanted to join in. I often lament about modern ag in Iowa. I don’t like the chemicals that permeate our air and water to grow corn and soy for animal feed. I’ve seen the statistics about modern agriculture being a top five contributor to green house gas emissions. I just think we eat too much meat in our society.

Eating plant-based meals is a great way to cut your carbon “foodprint.” One of the reasons I’m a huge propenent of eat local is to reduce our carbon footprint. You can have an even bigger bang for your buck, so to speak, by eating just one plant-based meal a day.

vegan meal for the one meal a day for the planet eating challenge

So what is veganism, anyway?

You’ve all heard the joke about vegans, right? How do you know someone is vegan? That’s all they talk about. It’s similar to crossfitters. How do you know a crossfitter? It’s all she talks about. {I happen to be a crossfitter, so I can totally joke about them.} I am not vegan, though. I was a vegetarian for about two years in college and I really liked it. But then I married an Iowa Farm Boy who liked meat.

And you know what? I like meat too. And cheese. I really like cheese. I’m not about to give it up full time. But I will totally give it up for one meal a day. I already prioritized one vegetarian meal a day – usually breakfast or lunch, but sometimes dinner. How difficult can going vegan really be?

Well, let me tell you, vegan is quite a lot more difficult than vegetarian. And I decided to undertake this One Meal a Day Eating Challenge during one of the busiest times of my life. I have been traveling almost non-stop since Earth Day when I announced this challenge on Instagram. It has not been easy. But it is totally doable, and despite all the traveling and yummy food I’ve been eating, I’m maintaining my 10 pound weight loss from earlier in the year!

So what is veganism, anyway? Veganism means avoiding any and all animal products from food to clothing. That means no eggs, honey, meat, cheese, or milk products. I’ve heard from many vegans that they chose the lifestyle for health reasons. Other people choose to go vegan for the health of the planet. Still other people choose to go vegan out of concern for animal rights. 

Whatever reason you might choose to go vegan, over the last two weeks, I’ve found that it can be tricky – particularly when traveling.

old quebec city - navigating vegan travel

Navigating Vegan Travel Opportunities

During this challenge, I’ve realized that vegan travel is not really that easy, but it can be done. In the last couple of weeks, I spent almost an entire week in Charleston, South Carolina, and another {almost entire} week in Quebec City, Canada. Here are a few tips I have for the vegan traveler:

  1. Choose ethnic cuisine. Certain ethnicities are just really conducive to veganism. Do you like Mexican or Thai food? You’re in luck! They both have lots of vegan friendly options. One of my favorite vegan lunches has been the rice and bean bowl. Add sauteed veggies, guacamole, and spicy salsa and I hardly miss the meat or the cheese! Yum! Phad Thai with tofu? Also yum!
  2. Check out HealthyCow.net – a phenomenal database of vegan and/or vegetarian restaurants.
  3. Pack your own snacks for those times when you really can’t find any vegan options at all. They do exist, but if you take along your favorite granola or have access to hummus and veggies, you’ll be all set until you can find a restaurant or shop with vegan options.
  4. Book a hotel with a fridge at the least, or a kitchen, so you can prepare your own food if you’re in a pinch.
  5. Ask restaurants for substitutions. I found more vegetarian options than vegan, but it’s totally acceptable to ask a restaurant to leave off the cheese or the honey topping to make a dish vegan.

tropical nice cream - vegan dessert

Vegan Food Ideas I already had on the blog before starting this challenge!

Turns out, I already have several vegan snack ideas on this blog before I started this challenge. If you’re looking for vegan meal snack ideas, check out all of these recipes. They’re either already vegan, or can be simpy by leaving out an ingredient or subbing an easy ingredient – like almond dairy for milk dairy.

Pineapple / Pomegranate Smoothie

Tropical Nice Cream

Blueberry Nice cream

Almond Milk Pancakes

Olive Garlic Hummus in the Instant Pot

Want to join me in this 21 day OMD Challenge? Click the link and sign up to receive the newsletter! It’s filled helpful info, sample menus and more. It’s pretty easy to do and you might be surprised by the benefits of changing your diet for just one meal a day!

 “The very same foods that protect your health also protect the health of the planet.”–Neal Barnard, M.D.


5 Must Know Tips for Transplanting Tomato Plants

Homegrown tomatoes are the best!! And it’s not that hard to grow them, but you can do a few things that make a big difference in growing successful tomatoes from the very beginning. To get your tomato seedlings off to the best possible start, you must know these five tips for transplanting tomatoes! It all starts with the transplanting.Must know tips for planting tomato seedlings

*This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a small commission on your purchase.*

Welcome back to Tuesdays in the Garden! Today, you’re in for a treat. Not only do we have lots of great gardening tips to help you get your spring planting right, but we also have a few homemade gifts you can quickly put together, just in time for Mother’s Day! Make sure to read to the end of the post and check out all the great ideas from my dear gardening friends.

5 Must Know Tips for Transplanting Tomato Plants

Have you planted your tomatoes yet? It’s generally safe to plant them around your frost free date.  Our official frost free date (May 15) is right around the corner, but I always check the long range weather forecast before deciding when to tansplant my tomato plants. Fro the last three years, we have had a killing frost after May 15, so quite often, transplanting tomato plants has to wait. If you’re looking forward to transplanting tomato plants, too, make sure you read these must know tips!

pinch off bottom leaves
1 .Dig a deep hole and pinch off the tomato plants’ lower leaves.

I like to plant my tomatoes deep for a couple reasons. First, it’s super windy out here in the Iowa Prairie and planting them deeply gives them better support from the wind. It  allows roots to develop all along the tomato stem which helps make the plant stronger. So, dig a hole deep enough that only the top leaves will be showing on the ground. Pinching off the lower leaves also encourages roots to develop too, so carefully pinch off the leaves before you put the seedling in the hole.

Make sure to support the stem as you cover it with dirt. Be careful when you’re covering the plant with dirt so you don’t accidentally harm the little seedling. I like to support the stem with one had and fill the hole with dirt with the other hand. You don’t want to break the stem as you cover it – I’ve done it and it makes me very sad. Make sure you cover the seedling up to the top leaves.

2. Wondering how far apart to plant tomatoes?

Make sure you give your tomatoes enough space to grow.

  1. Dwarf tomato varieties only need to be about 1′ apart, with 2′ – 3′ between rows.
  2. If you’re staking your tomato plants, they’ll need about 2′ of separation to grow, with 2′ – 3′ between rows.
  3. Using large cages? They’ll need to be about 3′ apart, and probably 4′-5′ between rows.
  4. Want to let your tomatoes grow without support? You’ll need a lot of room! About 3-4′ between plants, and 4′-5′ between rows.

water the tomatoes after planting

3. Water tomato plants generously after planting.

Newly planted seedlings need a nice drink of water immediately after planting so make sure you water right away. I like to make an indent in the dirt around the plant so the water stays near the seedling instead of running away. You’ll want to continue watering for a few days if you don’t get a rain pretty quickly after planting.

mulch tomatoes

4. Mulch right away.

Since you’ve gone through the effort of planting tomatoes, just go ahead and mulch them right away. I’m often tempting to skip this step and get to it later, but I’ve found later sometimes never comes. Mulching right away is a great way to keep down the weeds and it also helps keep them moist. I used old hay we got for free in this picture, but a better mulch is straw because it’s weed free. My hay is very, very old, so I hope nothing will sprout from it. I could be wrong though, and end up seriously regretting the use of this old hay. I’ll let you know if that’s the case!

support tomatoes with homemade tomato cages

5. Add a support trellis or basket immediately.

Another key to tomato success,  is to add support right away. Tomatoes like to be supported and I know from experience that if I don’t support them right after planting, I won’t ever get back to it. Pretty soon I end up with a huge tomato jungle – and while I don’t think that’s a terrible thing, it does make picking the beautiful fruits more difficult and a lot of them end of smashed by my big feet. In years past, I used these homemade tomato baskets last year. They are easy to make and easy to use, but they take up a lot of space so you need a large growing area if you want to use homemade tomato baskets.

tomato trellis from moss mountain farm

This year I am hoping to use these homemade support systems I saw a Moss Mountain Farms. I love that this tomato system takes up less room than my huge cages and I think it’s awfully pretty too! Also, it’s a way to grow more tomatoes in less space since you don’t have to set the tomatoes so far apart. Do you have a favorite tomato trellis you like to use?

And that’s the start to a successful tomato season! Have you planted your tomatoes yet? I’d love to hear your ideas for success too. 

tuesdays in the garden

Tuesdays in the Garden

Want more garden tips from my friends from around the web. Make sure you click over to everyone’s posts and check out what’s going on in different parts of the country! We’ve got a couple homemade gift ideas that might be perfect for Mother’s Day this weekend, as well as growing tips too!

frugal family home

Shelly from Frugal Family Home is sharing a mini green house idea for small spaces!

hearth and vine

Patti from Hearth and Vine is sharing a cute DIY Gazing Ball – what a great gift is this?

an oregon cottageJami at An Oregon Cottage is sharing her homemade Salad Dressing Gift Basket

homemade food junkie

Diane from Homemade Food Junkie is sharing tips for growing strawberries in DIY towers

angie freckled rose

Angie the Freckled Rose is sharing tips for adding visual interest in your garden!

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Fun Things to Bring Camping for Ultimate Camping Fun

In these days constant electronic use, camping can be a great way to connect with your family and with nature. If you’re going camping this year, make sure to check out this list of fun things to bring camping for ultimate camping fun!Fun things to take camping shown on a picnic table

*This post on fun things to bring camping is sponsored by EcoSurvivor by Jasco. All opinions are mine. #ecosurvivor*

Fun Things to Bring Camping for Ultimate Camping Fun

Dan and I used to camp a lot, pre-kids. After having four kids in quick succession, though, we got out of camping because it just seemed like an awful lot of work with so many young kids. Last year we finally got back outside and had a blast camping in the Cascades of Washington State. This summer we’re very excited to head to Yellowstone for a week of camping too.meat on a grill and a bunch of camping chairs around a campfire

Essentially, we’re starting over on the camping front. Last year my sister took care of all the camping supplies but this year, we’re on our own. So I’m putting together lists and gathering camping supplies now to make our camping adventures as awesome as possible.

Here are items I think we’ll need to take along for ultimate camping fun. I’m not talking camping supplies per se, just a few necessities for FUN – like a good attitude, a willingness to try, and a few tangible items:

  • Small games, because the goal is to put electronics down, right, and rely on each other for amusement
  • EcoSurvivor USB Lantern & flashlights, because we’ll need to see to play those games and find things in the dark!
  • A portable speaker, because music is always nice

reading a book in a hammock at a campsite

  • A ukulele, they’re just so fun and easy for campfire amusement
  • A hammock, because they make things right in the camping world
  • A book you’ve been meaning to read for ever
  • A journal for doodling, writing, and pressing flowers

playing in the Cascade River

EcoSurvivor’s Water4 Mission

Camping is a great way reconnect with family, and it also does wonders for appreciating the beauty and wonder of nature. It helps us realize that we need to be good stewards of the earth, too. One reason I’m excited to partner with EcoSurvivor on this post is because of their commitment to clean water. If you’re a long time reader here, you know that clean drinking water is one of my passions. I know what’s like to worry about drinking water, because our own well water is unsafe to drink.

EcoSurvivor Water4 Purpose

Millions of people around the world don’t have access to clean water either. While we take safe drinking water mostly for granted in the USA, women in Africa walk an average of 3.75 miles to collect their water. Their kids don’t get to play in clean water like mine did last summer in the Cascades. Sadly, 80% of illnesses in developing countries are linked to poor water and sanitation conditions.balancing rocks in the cascade river

I’m pleased to tell you about Jasco’s Water4 mission –  a nonprofit organization empowering people to eradicate their own water crisis through entrepreneurship, education and technology. To support clean water for everyone, EcoSurvivor by Jasco will donate 50% of their net profits to help nearly 1 billion people improve access to clean water and help prevent over 3 million deaths each year. That’s a mission I can get behind. Learn more about Jasco’s Water 4 Mission here.

EcoSurvivor USB Lantern & Bluetooth Speaker by Jasco 

EcoSurvivor USB Lantern & Bluetooth Speaker by Jasco 

It’s easy to support Jasco’s mission because they have some really cool camping products. We’re excited to add a few EcoSurvivor items to our camping kit this year and support clean water at the same time. They’ll come in really handy when we’re camping at Yellowstone in July. Eco Survivor Bluetooth Speaker and EcoSurvivor USB Lantern

The nice thing about the EcoSurvivor gear is that its rugged construction means my kids (who break everything) won’t be able to break these. They are dust, impact, and water resistant.

We really like the USB Lantern that includes three different light levels and can also charge a cell phone in an emergency. It’s dimmable and battery operated, so we don’t need fuel or matches to turn it on. On the lowest light level, the lantern provides 200 hours of light.

While we prefer fair weather camping, we’ve been in some pretty nasty weather at campsites before. It’s comforting that this lantern will continue to work even in the rain or splashing water. It’s rated IP54 and also protects against sand and dust in addition to water.

The other EcoSurvivor item we really like is their portable speaker. It’s powered by a rechargeable 4,000 mAh battery and can play music for up to 12 hours. It’s easy to see how much battery is left with the fuel gauge button and the handle comes in really for carrying it around.Campfire at a campsite

Are you a camping family? I’d love to hear what fun things you take along camping and I’d also love to hear your thoughts on this EcoSurvivor gear! Have you tried their products? What did you think?

If you liked this post on Camping Fun, you might like these posts too:

Global Water Crisis

What’s in YOUR Drinking Water

Custer State Park, South Dakota

Must have items for fun camping trips

Delicious Olive Garlic Instant Pot Hummus without Tahini

If you’re looking for a delicious and easy Instant Pot Hummus without tahini, you’ve come to the right place. It’s so easy to make instant pot chickpeas – and once you have those, you’ll love how frugal and delicious this Instant Pot Olive Garlic Hummus really is.  Make it the next time you need a healthy snack or a party appetizer!You will love this delicious and easy Instant Pot Hummus without tahini, It's so easy to make instant pot chickpeas - and once you have those, homemade hummus is really quick! Make it the next time you need a healthy snack or a party appetizer!

Delicious Olive Garlic Instant Pot Hummus without Tahini

Why make Instant Pot hummus without tahini? Well, you certainly don’t have to. Tahini is a Middle Eastern Paste made from ground sesame seeds. But if you’re like me, you don’t often have tahini on hand. It’s really good, but it’s also a little pricey. If you’d rather add it, I recommend using 3 TBS tahini to make this hummus. But if you don’t have, leave it out! It doesn’t impact that taste of this delicious homemade hummus.

Hummus without tahini

First, let’s make the Instant Pot Chickpeas!

It’s not hard to make chick peas in an instant pot. You can cook them soaked or unsoaked, but unsoaked will take longer to cook. Click here to learn cooking times for all kinds of beans – both soaked and unsoaked. I usually cook unsoaked beans in my Instant Pot. The trick is to increase cooking time and use a natural pressure release.

instant pot chickpeas

To make these instant pot chickpeas, combine chickpeas, broth, oil, and salt in the Instant Pot. Cook on manual high for 40 minutes if you’re using unsoaked beans, about 20 minutes if they are soaked overnight. After 15 minutes of natural pressure release, manually release the remaining pressure. Drain the chickpeas, but do reserve 1/2 cup of the broth to thin the hummus.

Now, let’s make the Olive Garlic Instant Pot Hummus 

use an immersion blender to combine the ingredients to make the hummus without tahini

It’s so easy to make homemade hummus! All you have to do is blend the chickpeas til creamy with an immersion blender or food processor. Then add in remaining ingredients and continue blending, adding in one tablespoon of broth at a time, until you’ve reaching the desired consistency. That’s it! Wasn’t that easy??

You will love this delicious and easy Instant Pot Hummus without tahini, It's so easy to make instant pot chickpeas - and once you have those, homemade hummus is really quick! Make it the next time you need a healthy snack or a party appetizer!
Serve  delicious homemade hummus with this cracker and cheese board for less from my friend Nicky at Little Family Adventure, fresh homemade naan, or sliced veggies and you’ll have a real hit.

Here are a few supplies you’ll need to make this hummus.

Instant Pot – you don’t need one, but it does make cooking the chickpeas so much easier. If you don’t have one, just cook them on the stove instead.

Immersion Blender – this is the one I use.

Real Salt – not all salt is created equal. This is my go-to salt brand.

Organic Chickpeas / Garbanzo beans – I’ve read they’re pretty much the same thing. What do you think?



877 cal


67 g


52 g


23 g
Click Here For Full Nutrition, Exchanges, and My Plate Info

Yields 4 servings

Instant Pot Hummus

Delicious garlic and olive hummus made from dried chickpeas in an electric pressure cooker.

5 minPrep Time

40 minCook Time

45 minTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe
Recipe Image


  • 1 cup dry chickpeas , rinsed and sorted
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tsp real salt
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped kalamata olives


  1. Add chick peas and chicken broth to the inner pot of the Instant Pot.
  2. Turn pressure valve to sealing and set manual pressure on high for 40 minutes.
  3. Do a natural release when pressure time has finished, letting the rest of the pressure out after 15 minutes.
  4. Drain chickpeas, reserving a half cup of chicken broth to thin hummus.
  5. Using an immersion blender, blend chickpeas to a creamy consistency. You could also add all ingredients to a food processor.
  6. Add in remaining ingredients and blend them together until smooth. Add in a tablespoon at a time of the reserved cooking liquid for a thinner consistency.
  7. Chill for an hour prior to serving.


**You'll need to add a little bit of time to this recipe to account for the Instant Pot reaching pressure, and also releasing pressure.

**If you'd like to add tahini, add 3 TBS Tahini in this recipe.

**If you'd like to make this recipe vegan, swap out the chicken broth for vegetable broth.

If you liked this Delicious and Easy Instant Pot Hummus without Tahini, you’ll like these posts too:

How to Cook Unsoaked Dried Beans in the Instant Pot

Balsamic Rosemary Instant Pot Pork Roast

Instant Pot Beef Roast with Rigatoni

Old Fashioned Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup

Beginner’s Guide to Raising Baby Chicks for Your Backyard Homestead

Raising baby chicks at home is one of my family’s favorite homestead activities. Everyone loves the adorable little balls of fluff and even my kids enjoy helping raise them. If you’d like to get started raising baby chicks, here’s everything you need to know about baby chick supplies, bedding for baby chicks, a chicken feeding guide, and care tips. Plus there’s an exciting giveaway at the end!!

*This post is sponsored by Scratch and Peck Organic Chicken Feed. All opinions are mine. #organicfromday1*Raising baby chicks at home is one of my family's favorite homestead activities.If you'd like to get started raising baby chicks, here's everything you need to know about baby chick supplies, bedding for baby chicks, and a chicken feeding guide with care basics. Make sure to check out this useful info!

Beginner’s Guide to Raising Baby Chicks for Your Backyard Homestead

What a reward backyard chickens are! Not only are they hilarious and entertaining, but they also provide you with a delicious supply of the freshest, most delicious farm fresh eggs you’ve ever tasted. If you’ve ever had an organic egg from a free-range chicken, you know there is absolutely no comparison to its store bought counterpart. You will love taking a little more control of your food supply when you start keeping chickens on your backyard homestead. Here’s how to raise them from baby chicks!

baby chick three days old

First, Gather your Baby Chick Supplies!

You don’t need a ton of baby chick supplies, but there are a few things you will need before bringing your baby chicks home:

  • Brooder Box
  • Bedding for baby chicks
  • Heat lamp & heat light bulb
  • Feeder & Waterer
  • Organic chick starter feed
  • Optional: thermometer & mesh wire for a lidbaby chick in hands


Brooder Box Set Up 

Before your chicks come home, you’ll need to set up a brooder box. You can use wooden boxes or plastic totes. As tempting as it is, cardboard is NOT a good choice. It it will absorb all the moisture, fall apart, and stink. I generally start my chicks in a large plastic tote and then move to them to a bigger wooden box as they grow. And they grow FAST! You will be shocked by how quickly they grow.

Raising baby chicks at home is one of my family's favorite homestead activities.If you'd like to get started raising baby chicks, here's everything you need to know about baby chick supplies, bedding for baby chicks, and a chicken feeding guide with care basics. Make sure to check out this useful info!

Make sure your brooder box is big enough for them to move around in. Sadly, chicks can be trampled to death by each other if they’re over-crowded. I also recommend that you keep the brooder box in your house or garage in the beginning so you can keep a better eye on them. A good way to set up your brooder is the put the heat lamp on one side of the brooder (instead of in the middle) and your food and water on the other side. That way the chicks can be as close or far from the lamp as needed and they can regulate their own temperatures. See the picture above for how I set up my brooder boxes.

Raising baby chicks at home is one of my family's favorite homestead activities.If you'd like to get started raising baby chicks, here's everything you need to know about baby chick supplies, bedding for baby chicks, and a chicken feeding guide with care basics. Make sure to check out this useful info!

Heat Lamp For the Brooder Box

Along with the brooder box, you’ll need a heat lamp and an infrared light bulb. Baby chicks need a lot of heat until either the weather is hot, or they’ve lost their chick down and grown their feathers (usually around 6 weeks of age). I sometimes use an old camera tripod to hang the light. In the first week, the brooder temperature needs to be between 90-95 degrees for the baby chicks.

You can buy a thermometer if you’d like, but you’ll be able to tell if your chicks are too hot or too cold by their behavior. If they are all huddled together and chirping loudly, they’re too cold. When they’re spread apart and look like they’re panting, they’re too hot. If you notice that your chicks are too hot or too cold, adjust the light higher or lower  to change the temperature in the brooder box.

Raising baby chicks at home is one of my family's favorite homestead activities.If you'd like to get started raising baby chicks, here's everything you need to know about baby chick supplies, bedding for baby chicks, and a chicken feeding guide with care basics. Make sure to check out this useful info!

Bedding for Baby Chicks

Make sure to have bedding in the brooder box. Pine shavings work best, but shredded paper is also an option. Do not use cedar shavings. They are not good for chickens! Every couple days clean out the bedding by moving the baby chicks to one side of the brooder box, scooping out the old bedding (it’s great for your garden!), and putting fresh bedding down.

food and water for baby chicks - chicken feeding guide

Chick Feeding Guide – Organic from Day 1

Before you bring your chicks home, get a chicken feeder and waterer like the ones pictured above. You can find them at your local farm supply store or order them online. You’ll also need baby chicken food called chick starter! Think of chick starter as a special baby food for chicks. It’s higher in protein than food for grown chickens and it’s formulated with nutrients the chicks will need to grow strong and healthy. Make sure your baby chicks have access to chick starter food and clean water at all times.

scratch and peck organic chick starter

Feed your baby chicks the chick starter food until they are around eight weeks old. I highly recommend Scratch and Peck’s Naturally Free Organic Starter for the first eight weeks. It’s a special blend of cracked organic grains, organic flax meal, wild caught fish meal, and necessary vitamins and minerals and it’s a really nice organic chicken starter option. Click here to see where you can buy it locally. If you can’t find it in your area, you can buy it online and have it mailed directly to your house for free! It’s also available on Amazon Prime and Chewy.com.

If you prioritize organic food for your family, you’ll also want to make sure your chickens eat organic food as well. Scratch and Peck Feeds is a Certified B Corp that sells Certified Organic, Project Non-GMO Verified, Animal Welfare Approved feeds. Scratch and Peck’s mission is to “make honest, wholesome organic animal feed products with the most heartfelt regard for our planet and fellow living creatures.” 

Not only does Scratch and Peck sell organic chick starter, but they also have Naturally Free Organic Grower, Naturally Free Organic Layer,  Cluckin’ Good Grubs (my chickens love these!),  Organic Pig Grower, Organic Turkey Grower, Organic Goat Feed, and more!  Click here to learn more!
chick learning to drink - chicken feeding guide

Care Tips for Baby Chicks

The day you get your chicks, gently dip each chick’s beak in the water so they know where it is. You might have to re-fill or clean out their water dish several times a day as they get bigger. They often knock a lot of bedding in the water by scratching around in the brooder. It’s a good idea to put the waterer on a brick or elevate it in some way to keep it cleaner. Just make sure the chicks can reach it. It’s also important to use a waterer specifically for chicks as they can drown if the water is too deep. Adding a little apple cider vinegar to their water is also a really great way to help keep them healthy with natural remedies.

dried poo on a baby chicken

Another thing you need to be mindful of is dried poo on the the baby chicken butts. Make sure you keep a close eye out for this, and when you see it, you will need to get it off. A gentle way to clean dried chicken poo is to use a wet towel to loosen it instead of yanking it off. Dried chicken poo can cause blockage and is dangerous for baby chicks. Make sure you get that dried on poo off your fluffy little chicken butts. 🙂

featured beginners guide to raising chicks

And that’s really all there is too it! Set your chicken area up before you get your chicks, keep them warm, feed them high quality organic feed from day one, and enjoy them. Your baby chicks will grow up into hilarious egg-laying chickens and provide you with fresh eggs and hours of entertainment.

scratch * Peck organic from day 1Win an Organic Chick Starter Kit from Scratch and Peck Feeds!

How would you like to win an organic chick starter kit from Scratch and Peck Feeds? It’s simple to do, just use the rafflecopter form below.This giveaway is open to US residents 18 years of age and older. Giveaway ends at midnight on May 15th.

The Organic Chick Start Kit Prize contains the following:

 Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you liked this post on raising baby chicks for your backyard homestead, you’ll like these posts too:

20 Delicious Instant Pot Desserts You Need in Your Life!

The Instant Pot is a very versatile kitchen appliance. Not only can it make quick dinners on the double, but it’s also great for making desserts. If you really want to put your Instant Pot to great use, try these twenty Instant Pot desserts (with gluten free options) and add a few handy Instant Pot Accessories to help you up your game! Your family will thank you.If you really want to put your Instant Pot to great use, try these 20 instant pot desserts! This list includes gluten-free options too so get cooking!

*This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a small commission on your purchase.*

20 Delicious Instant Pot Desserts You Need in Your Life!

Have you ever had those nights when dinner just isn’t quite enough? You want to make a quick dessert, or maybe you’ve been craving cake all day, but don’t want to spend another hour in the kitchen baking. If you are looking for something delicious, quick, and easy to make for your next dessert, you are going to love these instant pot recipes! All of them are a delectable sweet treat that will leave you wanting more every single time! Here are 20 of the best Instant Pot desserts for a sweet treat.

Instant Pot Accessories you’ll need to Make these IP Dessert Recipes

Before we get to the dessert recipes, let’s talk Instant Pot Accessories for a minute. In addition to your Instant Pot, you’ll also need the right sized pans to fit inside your IP. A good rule of thumb is 6″ and 7″ pans will fit inside 6 qt Instant Pots and 8″ pans will fit inside 8 qt Instant Pots. Make sure your pans fit your instant Pot before you try these recipes. 🙂

The other Instant Pot accessory you may want to invest in, is a set of colored sealing rings. One of my favorite things to cook in my Instant Pot is unsoaked dried beans. If you’ve used your instant pot a lot, you probably noticed that it retains an odor that can transfer to other dishes. If I don’t want my lovely flourless cake to taste like the dried beans I love to cook, all I have to do is switch out the rings. You can get a set of three different colored sealing rings on Amazon for $15 or less. Here’s a set for a 6 qt Instant Pot, and here’s a set for an 8 qt Instant Pot. instant-pot-dulce-de-leche-lava-cake-recipe-1

Let’s see the 20 Delicious Instant Pot Dessert Recipes!

Now that you’ve checked your instant pot accessories, it’s time to chose your favorite recipe and get cooking! From cheesecake to coffeecake, to brownies and cobbler, one of the next fourteen recipes is sure to pique your interest. And if you’re looking for gluten-free options, scroll on down to see the next six options. Enjoy!

      1. Pumpkin Cheesecake
      2. Instant Pot Dump Cake
      3. Dulce de Leche Lava Cake
      4. Pineapple Upside Down Cake
      5. Peach Cobbler
      6. Chocolate Lava Cake
      7. Passion Fruit Pie
      8. Instant Pot Cake
      9. Key Lime Pie
      10. Peanut Butter Brownies
      11. Blueberry Coffee Cake
      12. Angel Food Cake
      13. Monkey Bread
      14. Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake

The Instant Pot is a very versatile kitchen appliance. Not only can it make quick dinners on the double, but it's also great for making desserts. If you really want to put your Instant Pot to great use, try these 20 instant pot desserts and add a few handy Instant Pot Accessories to help you up your game!

Gluten Free Instant Pot Desserts

Looking for gluten-free options? All of the following recipes are gluten-free, or can be with careful ingredient selection.

    1. Orange Chocolate Cake
    2. Chocolate Pudding with Fresh Berries & Omega 3s
    3. Chocolate Orange Cheesecake – can be gluten free if you use gluten free cookies
    4. Keto Cheesecake
    5. Caramel Popcorn
    6. Vanilla and Jam Rice Pudding

If you liked this post on Instant Pot Desserts, you’ll like these dinner recipes too

Instant Pot Chicken and Rice with Lemon & Feta

IP Pot Beef Roast w/ Rigatoni

IP Pork Roast w/ Rosemary & Garlic

I’d love to hear from you! What type of instant pot dessert recipe have you made before? Or what would you like to make?