IT'S NATIONAL CHOCOLATE DAY!

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It's basically the greatest day of the year. National Chocolate Day calls for some serious decadence! So after slaving away tirelessly and having no fun at all, I've put together a round-up of some pretty fine looking chocolate recipes for your viewing and eating pleasure. Enjoy!

ABOVE: Chocolate Buttermilk Frosted Brownies via Food52

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Gjelina's Chocolate Tart with Pine Nut Crust via InStyle Magazine

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Not Messing Around Chocolate Cake via Whisk and Whittle

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Triple Chocolate Bakes Donuts via The Little Epicurean 

Chocolate Caramel Tart via Saveur

Chocolate Pots de Creme via Martha Stewart

Grain-free and Refined Sugar-free Chocolate Chip Cookies via Sweet Laurel Bakery

Salted Peanut Caramel Ice Cream Bars via Not Without Salt

Chocolate Bourbon Caramel Macaron Cake via Half Baked Harvest

Perfect Hot Chocolate via Food52

10 AWESOME HALLOWEEN DIY'S TO DO THIS WEEKEND

We've got one more official week before Halloween! Though we can't take credit for any of these radical Halloween DIY's, I've put together a round-up of some of the very best Halloween projects to get you in a spooktaclular spirit this weekend! Get your friends or the kids together for these awesome crafts and recipes. 

ABOVE: Yarn Spider Webs via 100 Layer Cakelet

Ghost Emoji Balloons via Aww Sam

Homemade Tootsie Rolls & Salted Caramels via Little Peanut Magazine

Matte Black Pumpkin via Sweet Paul Magazine

Oragami Vampire Lips via Pink Stripey Socks

Bats Taking Flight via Country Living

Ghosts on a Stick via Oh Happy Day

Haunted Dolls House via Mr. Imprintables

Pineapple Jack-O-Lantern via Style Files

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Blood Spatter Cookies via Annie’s Eats

Hope your weekend is fun and spooky!! xx

4TH OF JULY FOOD AND DRINK IDEAS

Time to get your patriotism on! Here are some fun and festive food and drink ideas for your Independence Day bash!

Photo courtesy of Little Peanut Magazine

Photo courtesy of Little Peanut Magazine

Let's just go ahead and have dessert first. How gorgeous is this cherry and blueberry pie from Little Peanut Magazine?

 

Photo courtesy of RipAndTan.com

Photo courtesy of RipAndTan.com

Now we need an icy cold beverage. This beautiful Cherry Margarita from Rip And Tan looks perfectly refreshing.

 

Photo courtesy of MarthaStewart.com

Photo courtesy of MarthaStewart.com

Looking for a non-alcoholic beverage option? This Watermelon Punch and Bowl, from Martha Stewart, is genius and simple. And sugar free!

 

Photo by Sierra Prescott - Courtesy of Petty Cash

Photo by Sierra Prescott - Courtesy of Petty Cash

Guacamole and chips are my quintessential summer foods. Let's try this recipe from one of the best Mexican restaurants in town. Here's the recipe from Petty Cash Taqueria, via Los Angeles Magazine.

 

Photo courtesy of FoodNetwork.com

Photo courtesy of FoodNetwork.com

Time to get the grill going. Bobby Flay's Green Chile Cheeseburgers with homemade queso sauce look like they'd be a perfect fit at our party. 

 

Photo courtesy of Fruitcake.com

Photo courtesy of Fruitcake.com

After those green chiles, cool your mouth down with these homemade firecracker popsicles from Freutcake. The kids will love them!

Happy 4th Everyone!! xx

 

2 HOME-COOKED DINNERS WITH BLUE APRON

After having Blue Apron recommended to me by several friends, I decided to give it a whirl. I think it's a great idea -- having fresh food, already measured and accompanied by a recipe, delivered to your door each week. I had three meals-worth delivered but was only able to cook two. The two dishes that I made each took about 45 minutes to make and tasted good. The part that I liked the best was that they inspired me and gave me ideas for future cooking at home. I actually used the roasted veggie/kale salad idea (from my second meal) when cooking for a dinner party a week later. My one gripe -- They don't offer an organic option. Other than that, I think Blue Apron is a great way to learn and inspire new home-cooked dishes. I enjoyed it!

Ingredients and recipes delivered to my door in a cold, insulated box.

Making maple-glazed carrots was simple and yummy.

NIGHT 1: Pan-Roasted Chicken with Mashed Potatoes and Maple Glazed Carrots.

NIGHT 2: Steak and Miso-Roasted Vegetable Salad

If you need a little inspiration, I think Blue Apron is an easy, inexpensive way to up your cooking game.