I’m a summer girl and LOVE the Fourth of July!¬†

Bring on the heat, the cocktails, the grills and let the fireworks begin!! I poked around  PINTEREST PIN Pinterest today to find great recipes and entertaining ideas for your own fireworks celebration!

For an appetizer or a side course, check this out!

 PINTEREST PIN Patriotic Taco Salad from Taste of Home and Pinterest.

1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1-1/2 cups water
1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
1 envelope taco seasoning
6 cups tortilla or corn chips
4 to 5 cups shredded lettuce
9 to 10 pitted large olives, sliced lengthwise
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

In a large skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the water, tomato paste and taco seasoning. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
Place chips in an ungreased 13-in. x 9-in. dish. Spread beef mixture evenly over the top. Cover with lettuce. For each star, arrange five olive slices together in the upper left corner. To form stripes, add cheese and tomatoes in alternating rows. Serve immediately. Yield: 8 servings.

For the signature Cocktail, try the Watermelon Summer Splash!


3 CUPS TONIC (serves 8)6eebe614537afca01e44bfc913287270Incredibly delicious Beer and Honey BBQ Chicken Skewers  were chosen for the main event! (found from Jo Cooks on Pinterest!)


3 cloves garlic, minced
¬ĺ cup beer
‚Öď cup honey
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp Dijon mustard
¬ľ cup low sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp olive oil
4 chicken breasts, cut into small cubes
cilantro for garnish

Cut chicken in small pieces, about 1¬Ĺ inch cubes.
In a medium bowl whisk all the ingredients together. Add chicken, there should be enough marinade to cover the chicken. Cover with plastic wrap and place in fridge. Let it marinate for at least 2 hours to 24 hours.
Fire up the grill.
Thread chicken on skewers, about 5 pieces per skewer. Do not throw away the leftover marinade.
Place chicken skewers on grill and turn every couple minutes or so, at the same time brushing some of the leftover marinade over the chicken. Grill until chicken is cooked through.
Garnish with cilantro and serve.

On the side, try the 

Grilled Ranch Potatoes! (from Creme de la Crumb on Pinterest)

5e08db3c4eddf3ee8c1ad748e867fc322 pounds baby red potatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil (or other oil)
1 packet ranch seasoning

Wash, pat dry, and quarter potatoes (for larger ones you may need to chop into slightly smaller pieces, about 1 inch pieces).
Place chopped potatoes in a large resealable bag. Drizzle olive oil into the bag, seal, and toss to coat the potatoes.
Open the bag, sprinkle in half of the ranch seasoning, seal, toss to coat, then repeat with remaining seasoning.
Thread potatoes on skewers. Grill over low heat for 10-20 minutes (depending on your grill and the size of your potatoes) turning throughout to ensure even cooking. When fork-tender, remove from grill and serve warm with cold ranch dressing if desired. Enjoy!

Dinner wouldn’t be complete without this

 Watermelon Arugula Salad with Jicama and Blueberries! (from Two Peas and their Pod on Pinterest)

33f51fda44201e7ea3fdb940441b04bf6 cups baby arugula
2 cups cubed watermelon, 1-inch cubes
1 cup blueberries
1 cup thin jicama strips
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
For the Honey Lime Dressing:

1/4 cup olive oil
Juice of 2 large limes
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint leaves
Pinch of sea salt


AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST……(drum roll, please)

Fourth of July Trifle! (from The Girl Who Ate Everything on Pinterest)

2 cups heavy cream
¬Ĺ cup white sugar
2 cups milk
2 (3.4 ounce) packages instant cheesecake pudding mix
2 teaspoons lemon juice
¬Ĺ cup sour cream
2 (10.75 ounce) packages prepared pound cake
2 (16 ounce) carton strawberries, sliced
strawberries for garnish
blueberries for garnish
In a medium bowl, combine cream and white sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Set aside. You want a stiffer whipped cream for trifle so that it holds up over time.
In another bowl beat cheesecake pudding mixes with milk for 2 minutes or until thick. Mix in sour cream and lemon juice. Fold in one cup of the sweetened whipped cream.
Slice pound cake into one inch cubes.
In a trifle bowl, start by layering ¬ľ of the pound cake on the bottom of the trifle bowl (A large glass bowl can be used if you don’t have a trifle bowl). Next, layer ¬ľ of the pudding mixture followed by a layer of ¬ľ of the strawberries. To make trifle look presentable make sure each layer is distinct and separate especially on the sides of the bowl. Repeat layers four times or until bowl is almost full.
Garnish the top of the trifle with the remaining whipped cream, strawberries, and blueberries.
Chill in refrigerator for at least 4 hours.







My featured image is a cool 4th of July custom cut Patriotic scrapbooking available on Ebay


Thanks so much for visiting today, and I hope that you have a wonderful and memorable Fourth of July Celebration!

Cheers! Laura


MORE MEMORIAL DAY MEAL IDEAS: BBQ Ribs, Romaine Salad with Pear, Bleu Cheese & Walnuts, Grilled Potatoes


All of those delicious summertime treats remind us of warm sunny days spent outside grilling, gardening, swimming, baseball games and having cocktails on the porch with friends. I love seasonal cooking and summer foods are my favorite! BBQ chicken & ribs, especially baby back,  fresh salads and refreshing drinks make for the perfect meal.


Oozing with flavor, saucy, saucy meat, falling off the bone…yum. The messier the better. Everyone has their own special rub and sauce recipe. There are people who precook their ribs in beer, root beer, coke, and even Dr. Pepper, before putting them on the grill. Some like their ribs dry with well seasoned rub, while others like their ribs dripping with sauce.¬†Some like the¬†to cook them in the oven, some like to cook them¬†on the grill, but¬†I like a combo.. (this sounds like a Dr. Seuss book).


Makes 2 racks

Reading the ingredients on most ready made bbq rubs and sauces from the store, not recognizing or being able to pronounce some, have inspired me to make my own sauces which are more amazing, flavorful and healthy.



  • 2 racks baby back spareribs, about 7 lb.
  • 3¬†T. each brown sugar, chili powder, kosher salt & pepper
  • 1¬†T. each paprika, dried thyme
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
  2. Trim the excess fat, and pierce the meat between the bones using a fork.
  3. Place ribs on a baking sheet .
  4. Combine seasonings and rub on both sides of racks.
  5. Cover baking sheet tightly with foil & roast for 2 hours.
  6. While cooking, make the sauce.


  • 1 T. vegetable oil
  • 2 T. minced garlic
  • 1 C.¬†chopped onion
  • 1 C. ketchup
  • 2 T. brown sugar
  • 1/4 C.¬† apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 T. prepared mustard
  • 2 T. water
  • 1/2 t. siracha or Tabasco sauce (optional)
  1. Sauté onion  in oil in a saucepan over med. heat, 3 min. Add garlic and cook 1 min.
  2. Add vinegar and simmer 4 min. Stir in remaining ingredients & simmer 10 min.
  3. Season with salt.
  • Preheat the grill to med-high.
  • Remove ribs from oven & coat with sauce.
  • Grill about 15 min. total, flipping and basting with sauce.
  • Remove from grill, rest for 2 min. & slice between the bones.


tony romas ribs

Recently I was having last minute company with little time to prepare, so I ran across these ‘ready-made’ Tony Roma’s baby back ribs in the refrigerated meat section of the grocery store. They are also available at Wal-Mart. I¬†Recognized the¬†brand name and remembered¬† that I devoured these ribs at Tony Roma’s restaurant years ago, so I decided to try them. WHAT A HIT!¬†

These saucy, flavorful ribs come fully cooked & grilled,¬†and vacuum sealed in their own pan. Each pack contains 1 slab of ribs. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, peal the plastic & bake for 15 min. That’s it! Slice & serve! (& don’t forget extra napkins!).

Now for the sides:


Makes 4-5 Cupsgrilled redskin potatoes

Super easy, tasty and makes great use of the other side of the grill. While the ribs are cooking, toss 1/14 lb. red potatoes cut into wedges with 2 T. olive oil & salt & pepper to taste.

Grill until cooked through, turning often, about 20 min.


Serves 4

Salad with pears blue cheese & walnuts

  1. Wash and pat dry 1 large head of romaine lettuce.
  2. Tear into bite size pieces.
  3. Combine & put in a bowl:
  • 1 T. red wine vinegar
  • 1/8 C. crumbled blue cheese (about¬†1 oz.)

4. Mash the cheese with a fork & blend with the oil & vinegar.

5. Add & toss throughly

  • lettuce
  • 1/4 C. blue cheese
  • 1/2 C. coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 8 cherry tomatoes, halved

Place in individual bowls, or a platter and garnish with:

  • 1 pear thinly¬†sliced into 8 wedges

This is a refreshing salad that you can make ahead, and serve chilled.


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