{Travel} Summer in Wisconsin

Yikes! It’s been a while- what a crazy month this has been. My parents are moving out of my childhood home this week {to Nashville!}, so Grant and I made the trip up to Wisconsin before the house has new owners! We had a wonderful long vacation, full of friends, family, good eats, new adventures, many memories, and even more “see you laters” {I don’t believe in goodbyes}. Since we’ve been back, I’ve been getting ready for my new school {nursing no longer!} and new job {at Vanderbilt’s Career Center} to start!

A few of my most favorite Wisconsin vacation moments {sorry for so many!}…

Summer Sounds – Cedarburg

Madison Farmer’s Market

A day of boating on Green Lake

Found all of my 1st grade lunch notes from my wonderful Mom while packing!

Lambeau Field – Go Packers!

Hello, Aaron Rodgers

Milwaukee Lakefront


Navy Pier Ferris Wheel


Happy Sunday!



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{News} HBSweets!

Introducing HBSweets… splendidly scrumptious sweet treats by request! After much encouragement and a little pestering from my friends and family, I have decided to offer my sweets for sale. I am officially open for business, taking orders, and happy to ship!

At all times, I will offer:

  • Monster Cookies: $8/dozen
  • Triple-Chocolate Chip Cookies: $8/dozen
  • White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies: $8/dozen
  • Sugar Cookies: prices vary depending on detail
  • Seasonal Items {starting in fall… pumpkin and cinnamon goodness!}

In need of party favors, shower treats, personalized sweets, holiday platters, or just a pick-me-up? I also offer sweets by request! I am more than willing to work with YOU, to create what you are looking for!

Find me on Facebook and place orders via hbsweets3@gmail.com. I look forward to making your day a little sweeter!

Be sure to “like” HBSweets on Facebook and think of me the next time you’re in need of a sweet treat.

HBSweets… adding a little sweet to each day!


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{Good Eats} Marinara Sauce + Homemade Meatballs

So, way back when I posted about how I don’t cook meat. Well that hasn’t really changed, if I imagine its cookie dough and I’m preparing to bake cookies instead of meatballs! It was a dreary, rainy weekend, so I decided to whip up my dad’s recipe for delicious marinara sauce. Nothing goes better with that than yummy homemade meatballs, so I toughed it out and made some. And it was SO worth it.

Marinara Sauce

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 fennel, chopped
  • 2/3 bottle of cheap red wine, drink the rest if you want
  • 2 cans of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • Herbs de Provence {or any blend of Italian spices}
  • Hot pepper flakes
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  • Dice onion, garlic, and fennel. Add to pan on medium heat with olive oil. Add herbs, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Let simmer 5-10 minutes {the longer it simmers, the better it turns out}
  • Add 2/3 bottle of wine. Let simmer 25-30 minutes.
  • Add crushed tomatoes and paste. Let simmer another 25-30 minutes. Add a small bit of water if too thick.
  • Serve with homemade meatballs and you’ve got yourself a delicious, somewhat nutritious, easy to prepare meal!

For dessert, I made cherry cobbler… Post on that coming later this week!

Happy Monday!



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{News} Blog Updates!

Happy Wednesday!

A rainy summer afternoon is perfect for 1) wishing I was on the beach in Cabo, and 2) for making some long overdue blog updates. If I can’t be on the beach, I might as well try to make my blog a little more “user friendly.” I’m so new to this blogging world, so it’s taken me a bit to get the hang of it. I think I finally found out how… I’m still looking to add more special touches, but take a look and enjoy!

Spring break in Cabo > hot, humid Nashville

Comments, suggestions, and questions are always welcome: hilarishappenings@gmail.com



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{Travel} Historic Tennessee Tour

What to do on a hot summer day, you ask? Well, how about a driving tour of historic Tennessee? Considering I’ve lived here for almost 4 years, its about time I saw what life was like in the “olden days.” Last week, Grant and I both had a free day, so we decided there really wasn’t anything better to do! We’re completely movied out, and with temps near or over 100, staying inside is really the only option, especially for a Wisconsinite like myself. I found the sights to see online, and we drove at our own pace on beautiful back country roads for a good 6 hours… bonding at its finest!

1) Donut Den. No, not on the “historic site” list, but its been in business since 1940-something, so that’s historic enough. I drive past it on my way to the gym, and am always tempted, but have never stopped. Good thing, because I’m now addicted!



2) Historic Franklin. I just love the little town square and main street of shops- it definitely reminds me of Cedarburg, where I grew up!

3) Lieper’s Fork. Supposedly a historic town, with really good almond butter from Joe’s!

4) Attempted to stop at the Rattle & Snap House. Unfortunately, its now a private home, and you need advance reservations. Otherwise the guard dogs will chase you out…

5) James K. Polk Home. The pictures speak for itself!

6) We passed a few civil war battlefields on the way to stop #7

7) Carnton Plantation. By this time, it was 4pm and still over 100 degrees. We decided to save this for a cooler day, but it looks beautiful and is sure to be another great adventure!



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{Party} Summer Soiree

This past weekend was HOT HOT HOT, so I decided there couldn’t be a better reason to have a little get together! I used a summery color palate… orange, yellow, pink, and red made up the decorations and party supplies. I wanted to keep it simple and fun, and I think that was accomplished!

I used cupcake liners from Michael’s, colored straws, and small Mason jars for margarita glasses, or as my friends called them, “adult sippy cups.”

Appetizer plates from Crate & Barrel make for easy clean up. Paired with themed napkins, you can’t go wrong!

For the margarita shaped sugar cookies, I used a new recipe from Pinterest in hopes of making my cookies hold their shape while baking. I topped them with a “salt rim” aka sparkly sugar crystals. I still need to perfect this recipe, but I think they looked pretty cute!

Dad’s famous guacamole was a must!

And, so were monster cookies

Who can have a party without cupcakes?

3 bottles of tequila later, it’s got to be a success, right?! Hope ya’ll are enjoying your summers, bring on the cool weather!



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{Travel} Weekend in the Big D

Longhorn Crossing!

Dallas. It’s been on my “go-to” list for months, probably because ALL of my friends somehow center around this city- they’re either born there, grew up there, have recently moved there to start a job, or have some connection to this great place! So, it was about time I made a trip to go see what all of the hype was about. I had been there once before, but I was 13 and it was for an ice skating competition, so needless to say I didn’t get to experience all the city has to offer like I could now. I went for a long weekend, Friday through Monday, and stayed with my sweet friend Kathryn! It was such a fun weekend and a great way to start June, and summer for that matter!

Directly from the airport, we headed to Fort Worth for some legit Tex-Mex at Joe T. Garcia’s and the RODEO! Yes- a real life rodeo. What an experience to say the least…

Joe T’s


The rest of the weekend was filled with shopping, eating, catching up, quality friend time, and even more tasty meals!

Out and About

Sweet Friends

Banana’s Foster Souffle

Thanks to my wonderful friends for such a great second-first trip to Dallas!

Mother and Daughter


A “must”… 3 is my FAV number!


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{News} Illuminating Blogger Award Recipient!

This morning I woke up to wonderful news… I am the winner of the Illuminating Blogger Award! As I am fairly new to this whole blogging world, and really just do it to keep in touch with friends and family, I was so touched to find out that YES, people other than my mom and dad ACTUALLY read this! How fun!

Many thanks to Thea from Organized Living Essentials for this great honor! I love her blog, and I have used many of her organizing tips as I make my first place a home. So, go check it out! Also, be sure to visit Food Stories, the founding blog of this award.

There are some steps I need to follow to pass this on…

First, I have to share a random tidbit about myself. I lived/studied in Copenhagen, Denmark for about 3 months, and LOVED every second of my time abroad. If I was presented with the opportunity to move back, I would most definitely consider it. There is something wonderful about the Danish lifestyle and the kind people that live there. I hope to make a trip back in the near future!

The next step is to share links to 5 of my favorite blogs to nominate for this award as well. I am kind of obsessed with reading blogs, so it was hard to pick only 5. I look forward to reading these and seeing what new posts they have every day, often for craft, baking, or cooking inspiration!

1) Baked Perfection

2) Kara’s Party Ideas

3) The Curvy Carrot

4) Under the Table and Dreaming

5) Eat. Drink. Smile.

That’s it- Happy Monday, friends! I think it’s going to be a great week!



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{Travel} Quick Trip to Chattanooga

Over Memorial Day Weekend, Grant and I decided to head to Chattanooga for a little fun. I had only ever driven through, and had been wanting to spend a little more time there, than just at a gas station. I didn’t know much about it before going, only that it was a 2 hour drive from my house. Its definitely still an “up and coming” city, but there were so many unique things to do, that we can’t do in Nashville. It was so hot out, that we definitely had to take advantage of all the touristy things the city offers. Some highlights of the weekend:

Tennessee Aquarium

Pedestrian Bridge

Ruby Falls

Lookout Mountain (the sign said you can see 7 states from the top. I’m not so sure about that…)

Good Eats

Let’s eat!

If you have a free day or two, I definitely recommend going- a quick weekend trip worth taking in my opinion. I loved every second of our trip, and am already excited for our next adventure!


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{Good Eats} Guacamole

Guacamole… I don’t think there’s a better dip/sauce/whatever you want to call it in the world. For the longest time, I refused to eat it, I thought it was gross and kind of reminded me of that icky green ketchup stuff. Anyways, that’s all changed, and I’m so glad. It’s good on just about anything! My friends have been asking for my recipe, and honestly, once I have the basic ingredients, I guestimate on how much of each to use, but here goes:

*Disclaimer: I definitely can’t take responsibility for this recipe… My masterchef of a dad came up with it, and deserves full credit!


2 avocados {The ripeness totally determines how good it will be. The riper the better, but not brown}

2 Roma tomatoes

1 small onion

1 jalapeno

1 lime {for juice}

2 tsp cayenne pepper {to taste}

Salt {to taste- definitely don’t go light on it, second to avocado ripeness, salt makes all the difference}


*All of these ingredients can be adjusted to what you like, there’s no set ratio, whatever you think tastes good! This is just my preference…


Mix all ingredients together, serve with your favorite chips and margarita of choice!

Happy Weekend and Happy Summer!


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