The Secret Life of Devon Delaney By Lauren Barnholdt

If Devon Delaney’s mom is right about karma coming back to bite you, then Devon knows she’s in big trouble. Devon isn’t unlike most kids her age. She’s not aloud to wear makeup; she isn’t part of the popular crowd, but she does have a great best friend, and she’s got a crush on the most popular boy in school–Jared Bentley. The problem is, he doesn’t know she’s alive. When Devon gets sent to live with her grandma for the summer, while her parents work out their “issues,” she befriends a girl named Lexi. Caught up in the whole “summer … Continue reading

Authentic Turkish Tava

This delicious recipe was given to me by Lisa Pietsch. She told me, “I had this stew in Incirlik, Turkey, back in 1992 and never forgot it! I’d never had chicken and vegetables that tasted so good in my life!” A Turkish food lover myself, I couldn’t resist sharing this recipe with you. As with American cuisine, Turkish cuisine also differs depending on which region you’re in. Because I’ve mostly tasted dishes from the Istanbul region, I’m anxious to dive into this delicious meal. This dish is typically either served over rice or with Turkish-style flatbread. In Turkey, the restaurant … Continue reading

Thinking of Italian? Think Bruschetta!

I admittedly love almost all Italian food. It’s delicious. It’s comforting. It’s succulent and yet usually surprisingly easy to prepare. This recipe is no exception. All you have to do is a little slicing, a little dicing, and a little baking. The result—an amazing appetizer, light lunch, or finger food to nibble on or serve at your next get together. Try baking the baguette ahead of time. Then all you’ll have to do is assemble and enjoy. For this recipe you’ll need: 1 baguette (you’ll use half) 3 TB olive oil for brushing bread 5 seeded and chopped Roma tomatoes … Continue reading

Like Eggs? You’ll Love This Frittata!

Eggs are one of the most versatile foods. They can be enjoyed any time of day, from morning until late at night. With a few twists here and there, a basic dish can be transformed into an elegant meal fit for your favorite guests. The next time you’re in the mood for Mediterranean flavors but don’t want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen, try this Mediterranean frittata. For this recipe you’ll need: 1 cup chopped onion 2 cloves garlic, minced 3 tablespoons olive oil 8 eggs, beaten 1/4 cup half-and-half, light cream or milk 1/2 cup crumbled … Continue reading


Today has been one of those days where my emotions have run all over the place. I have my own two children at home and invited my four-year-old niece to spend the night. Now, anyone who has children can likely relate to the utter chaos and destruction caused by having three children under the age of six in one tiny apartment. I admit, I’ve had a few moments where I longed for a fairy godmother to come rescue me and send in a nanny—but something else happened today. Something that momentarily made me wish I had a dozen children. Something … Continue reading

Minty Brownies—Just in Time for St. Patrick’s Day!

If you’re a chocolate lover, you’ll likely agree with me when I say that brownies are delicious, no matter what you do or don’t add to them. Some of my favorite additions include chocolate chips, caramel, peanut butter, and walnuts. But that isn’t to say I’m not also a fan of traditional, no-frills brownies. They’re all delicious in my book. I came across this recipe today and am thrilled to share it with you. For this recipe you will need: 1 ounce semisweet chocolate 1/4 cup butter or margarine 1 cup sifted powdered sugar 2 tablespoons creme de menthe 1/2 … Continue reading


Decidedly French, crepes are light, fluffy, and delicious. Often thought of as a super-thin pancake, crepes can be filled with any number of toppings. They are simple enough to make on a weekday morning, but elegant enough to make for guests or as a holiday breakfast treat. This weekend, instead of the usual pancakes and eggs, why not try some delicious crepes? They’ll transport you to a little village in France, there the light shines on cobblestone streets and people are happy to see you when you walk by. Here’s my recipe for crepes, shared by a friend who lives … Continue reading

What’s on Your Valentine’s Day Menu?

Today, as cards are being handed out around schools and boys and girls are reading the sayings on those little candy hearts wondering if the message was really meant for them, I finished my last batch of chocolate truffles. Truffles to me are the ultimate in chocolate indulgence. They are so rich that one is indeed enough (not something I often say) to leave you more than satisfied. I made the truffles for my husband as part of my Valentine’s Day mini-feast, which will also include a nice bottle of wine and some homemade bruschetta. What’s on your Valentine’s menu … Continue reading

Tiramisu and Brownies—Not As Hard As You Think

Tiramisu is a classic Italian dessert. Characterized by Lady Fingers soaked in espresso, this dish is typically even enjoyed by those who aren’t big sweets fans. The reason—it’s not too sweet. Sure, there’s sugar in it, but the creaminess of the Mascarpone cheese custard evens out the flavors, providing a mellow yet deliciously decadent dessert. Serve this dish the next time you have guests over—they’ll think you’re a culinary genius, and you’ll never have to tell them how easy the dish is to prepare. For this dish you’ll need: 6 egg yolks, room temperature ¼ cup sugar ¼ cup dark … Continue reading

A Valentine’s Treat: Truffles

Have you ever eaten a truffle? If not, you must try one. They’re creamy, rich, and delicious. A good truffle can cost you more than $2.00 in a chocolate shop. But the good news is that you can make them at home and surprise your sweetheart for much less. Sometimes truffles are served in gourmet chocolate shops with a hard chocolaty coating, but more popularly, they are simply rolled in cocoa powder or confectioner’s sugar for a melt-in-your-mouth treat you won’t soon forget. If you’re wondering what sweet treat to make the love of your life this holiday, truffles are … Continue reading