Connecting Over Coffee (Recipe: Toffee Caramel Dessert Coffee)

Written by Kristen Doyle of Dine and Dish.

Since becoming a mom, coffee has become more than just a hot beverage to jumpstart my morning. Coffee has become an integral part of my personal social time. It has become an excuse to take time out of my day to get together with other moms. Coffee at home or at the local coffee shop has become something I look forward to because I know it will mean the chance to re-charge and reconnect with friends I care about.

For hundreds of years, coffee has been a social connector. There is something about sitting down with a steaming cup of Joe and chatting with friends that just feels right.

We have recently started serving a cup of dessert coffee to guests after dinner parties. Dessert coffee slows things down, allowing guests to continue to savor the ambiance of the meal and the company. Conversations continue to unfold, relationships continue to form, bonds continue to be made… all over a cup of coffee. [Read more…]

Introducing…Bloggers without Borders (and a giveaway)

My parents raised me to give generously of my time, my abundance, my life; yet it’s all too easy to get caught up in the Busy. There are many instances when I have longed to do more, be more. But how to do so from my own home, my little corner of things?

I can’t abandon my own family to go volunteer in a famine-stricken country. I am not a political figure, nor am I independently wealthy. I am just a mom, doing what I can for those close to me. And so, I continue to write my food blog, encourage others to give their kids a nourishing breakfast, support their partner in the kitchen, and cook from scratch, among other topics.

Writing Simple Bites is incredibly rewarding, but for some time I have wanted to do more, to touch others, to do good. It is with a full heart that I am blessed beyond belief to share with you today about Bloggers without Borders.

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My Favorite Things Giveaway Winner!

It turns out that my favorite things are also pretty popular with the rest of you! What a response to my birthday giveaway!

Over 2700 of you commented for a chance to win my biggest giveaway basket ever, and a ton of you also stopped by my Facebook page and wished me a happy birthday, which was really, really sweet. Thank you for that!

Now I truly wish there could be more than one winner, but for this particular giveaway, just one lucky person will walk away with the grand prize.

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Eat Well, Spend Less: Back to School Breakfast (Recipe: Baked Oatmeal)

My lazy summer mornings are about to come to an end. Oh, how I have enjoyed not having to hustle my kindergartner out the door with a lunch and a school bag during these summer months.

I’ve been pregnant for the entire summer and mornings have not been my forte. The kids come and jump on me and we snuggle and read in bed until their tummies start rumbling. Yes, summer has been sweet.

However, as I slowly move out of the first trimester (can I get a high five?!) I feel my strength returning, just in time for fall, school, and those action-packed school-day mornings.

Energetic or not, pregnant or not, I need to have a morning plan. In this post I’ll show you my strategy for providing nourishing breakfasts this fall and throughout the winter. It’s simple, organized, and cost effective, perfect for the next installment of our Eat Well, Spend Less series.

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My Favorite Things – A Sweet Birthday Giveaway!

**This giveaway is now closed and the winner has been announced.**

It’s the middle of August, which means wild chanterelles are growing in the back forest, the hot air balloons go up twice a day at the nearby balloon festival, and it’s my birthday again.

Now that I’ve gotten over the shock of turning thirty (it took me a few years; you’ll understand if you too have recently left the twenties behind), birthdays are no big deal. Tomorrow I’m turning 33 and can’t wait to celebrate with a group of dear friends.

I also wanted to celebrate here, with you. One evening back in June, I scratched out a list of things I was currently obsessed with and thought ‘Wouldn’t that be a fun idea for a post?’. It didn’t occur to me that a giveaway of my favorite things would be even better, but eventually I put two and two together, contacted some of my favorite companies, and here we are!

This giveaway is epic. But first, do scroll through my list of current favorites things – everything from beauty products to iPhone apps, kitchen knives and shoes. Plus the all-important ingredient of a girl’s thirties – chocolate.

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