Roasted Cherry & Ricotta Crostini | this heart of mine

When I think of crostini, I immediately think of Italy, a place I really want to visit, and its popular flavors of garlic, butter, basil and tomatoes. Yum! However, crostini does not need to be emphatically Italian-like. In fact it can be a mix of other flavors and textures like bright and savory, of crunchy and smooth, of tart and mild. I was given the opportunity to get creative with Montmorency tart cherries for a series of recipes and roasted cherry and ricotta crostini is my first creation.

During a meal out with family this summer, I was reacquainted with the gloriousness of smooth ricotta on toasted baguettes. It was life altering. It got me thinking about ways to modify it (so I can eat it all the time). The bright flavor of the tart cherries seemed kismet. Tart cherries are one of the boldest fruits you can find. Bright in color (red!!) with a characteristic taste, these super fruits are available year-round in dried, frozen, juice and concentrate forms. And awesomely, they are predominately grown in the U.S. Roasting the tart cherries with a bit of sugar softened them and created a lovely sauce. It’s fantastic actually. Thick and smooth and should be used to top everything. The tart cherries keep the crostini from being brain buzzingly saccharine.

Roasted Cherry & Ricotta Crostini | this heart of mine

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Applique Children Totes | this heart of mine

When my siblings and I were young, my mom made each of us a tote bag with a design on the front. We loved our bags. Like my children do now, we stuffed them full of all our worldly treasures so we could drag them around with us wherever we went. I used her very simple bag pattern to create a couple of totes for Love Bug and Sweet J for my entry in this month’s Cricut Design Space Star challenge. I was connected with a list of other bloggers to make up Team 15 and this month’s challenge was to create something fashion or gear related. Team 15 chose to create designer inspired projects. While the bag is inspired by my mom, the appliques are inspired by the darling appliques from Boden. I created a few of my own designs (and recreated a few of theirs) and used my Cricut Explore to bring them to life.

Applique Children Totes | this heart of mine

I don’t do it often enough but I love sewing. Despite some of the tediousness (jar of hearts, I’m looking at you), I couldn’t help but smile with glee at each step. I hope the children will be agreeable enough to allow me to borrow them once in a while.

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Endless Summer Projects: Photo Transfer Journals | Classic Play - Pars Caeli - Lulu the Baker - Alexandra Hedin - this heart of mine

This post is sponsored by Bing.

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Summer is coming to an end and I have a perfect way to keep those summer shots and travel photos close at hand. Using the same method as the transfer image canvases, preserve those memories by creating photo transfer journals. Transfer favorite photos from summer trips, family events or shots of every day life (those are my faves!) The journals will be beautiful and can hold writings of your travels, adventures and memories.

This is our last Endless Summer Project post of the summer though it seems like we just started. It’s been so wonderful to work with Ali of Alexandra Hedin, Jen from Classic Play, Melissa of Lulu the Baker and MJ of Pars Caeli. They are creative, supportive, kind and hilarious women and it was a treat to collaborate. School starts in less than two weeks for us so our summer days are numbered. It’s been a good one. And don’t you worry. Our little group has a few fun things in the works.

Now back to the project.

Endless Summer Projects: Photo Transfer Journals | Classic Play - Pars Caeli - Lulu the Baker - Alexandra Hedin - this heart of mine

The cover of the white canvas journals is very similar to the surface of wrapped canvases and the process is almost identical. The journal is on the smaller size which makes the work process less but the results are just as rewarding.

Endless Summer Projects: Photo Transfer Journals | Classic Play - Pars Caeli - Lulu the Baker - Alexandra Hedin - this heart of mine

The journals don’t just have to be summer or travel related. I made up one with images of Love Bug and one with images of Sweet J. The children were tickled to see their faces on the book covers and I hope to use them as journals for this year.

Endless Summer Projects: Photo Transfer Journals | Classic Play - Pars Caeli - Lulu the Baker - Alexandra Hedin - this heart of mine

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Recipe: Peach Butter

August 18, 2014

Peach Butter | this heart of mine

I’m still in love with the in season peaches. These stone fruits are presently ripe and juicy and full of flavor. Instead of a sweet something, I went more on the savory end. And full fat. :) This peach butter has a hint of sweetness, mostly to bring out the flavor of the peach, plus nutmeg and cinnamon, two of the fruit’s best companions. This recipe should not be confused with the similarly named “peach butter” that, in fact, contains no butter at all and is a (seemingly sad) butter substitute. My recipe contains the real thing, saturated fat and all. It’s divine atop still-warm-from-the-oven buttermilk biscuits.

Butter is a divisive dairy product. There was, and continues to be, the butter vs margarine dispute. I’m definitely Team Butter. Our motto is “Give us butter or give us death”. Or nothing. We’ll settle for nothing. Interestingly, butter can also be altered, in a non-science, non-molecular-level way. Any number of herbs, spices and other flavorings can be added to the softened spread to create a more flavor-filled spread.

Peach Butter | this heart of mine

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Endless Summer Projects: Printable Map | Classic Play - Pars Caeli - Lulu the Baker - Alexandra Hedin - this heart of mine

This post is sponsored by Bing.

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Eek!! I love this printable map by Melissa of Lulu the Baker! The older Love Bug gets the more conversations we have about geography and where places are located. My children especially want to know where our state is in relation to the states our extended families live in. I’m so excited they are beginning to be interested in the larger world. Melissa has a free printable available today on her blog and what you do with it is totally up to you! Color it all, color in the states you’ve traveled to, mark your vacation route or place the license plate game. It’s perfect for a frame too!!

Head on over to Lulu the Baker for the free printable and enjoy!

If you’ve missed our other posts, here’s a recap!

Summer Banner | Large Scale Modern Art | Scavenger Hunt | Collapsible Cardboard House | Mid Century Modern Birdfeeder | Backyard Circus Stilts | 6 Water Balloon Games | Firework Tablecloth | Screen Printed Tees | Outdoor Cooking with Kids | Vacation Mobile | Upcycled Camping Lantern | Shell Memories

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