can food bring good luck? new year’s eve menu for two

This year was the first time Nate and I stayed home for New Year’s Eve, just us. I wasn’t sure what to make for dinner because it’s not just the evening before 2017, it’s also when Nate (finally!) proposed to me six years ago. 

I say finally because it felt like EVERYONE was getting engaged but me, and we’d been dating for eight years at the time. Eight. Years. If you know me, I had serious ants in my pants. But at our first apartment with good friends in the other room, Nate proposed in his sweet and simple way with the prettiest ring he designed himself. Six years later, here we are.

So back to the meal! I found this story on Reader’s Digest about 7 lucky New Year’s foods and wanted to see how many I could incorporate into our meal. So, here goes:

1. Cake

We had donuts from Glazed & Infused that morning, so we didn’t need more cake. Have you tried the apple fritter? My new fave! 

2. Grapes

I know you’re supposed to have grapes at midnight, but they looked too good on my cheese platter with prosciutto to pass up!

3-5. Pork & Greens & Noodles/Grains

I made my own fresh tomato sauce for the first time from this recipe from the New York Times, and I liked how it turned out. I sautĆ©ed some mushrooms and spinach, as well as pork strips, and added them all to the sauce. Incorporated that with some parpadelle pasta topped with fresh basil, and it’s time to mangia!

6. Fish

Well, I didn’t want to worry about how to incorporate fresh fish into this meal, so I cheated, and we ate Swedish Fish in honor of Nate’s heritage. Right…works for me!

I was bummed I forgot to add the beans to the charcuterie platter, but I’ll take 6 out of 7!

2017: a new chapter

Happy New Year! Oh, 2017, I have a good feeling about you. Mainly because the roller coaster ride that was 2016 is over, and I’m ready for some goodness.

So, before I continue, it feels right to do a life update because it’s been so long:

  • 4: how many years I’ve had this blog. šŸŽ‰šŸŽ‰šŸŽ‰šŸŽ‰
  • 18: number of months my daughter is now! She walks, she talks, and her sweet smile can light up a room.
  • 5: number of years I’ve been married to my college sweetheart, and the number of times we’ve moved in the city (just moved again thisĀ September!).
  • 3: how old my handsome little pup George is. He loves homemade treats, long snuggles, and snoring.
  • Me = tired.

Last year was a lot of navigating a new normal. Working full-time andĀ being an attentive mother and wife took a lot of my energy. New favorite things became going to Target (mom haven), farmers markets, and HGTV’s Fixer Upper.

Don’t get me wrong, I love all of those things, but there are also the things I used to like to do that I don’t do much of these days.

Like, have dinner with my friends.


Explore this city we live in. (Michigan Avenue after the CUBS WON THE WORLD SERIES was pretty awesome!)


Try new creative projects. (This feels like forever ago…)

Or, I don’t know, blog more often??

When I started this blog, I was younger, didn’t haveĀ real responsibilities, a dog, or a child. But things have changed in the past four years–I have changed in the past four years–and I want to share more of that with you.

When I told Nate I want this to be more of a lifestyle blog, he said somethingĀ like “I’m not sure people will want this lifestyle.” And…that’s okay. But I do try to beĀ clever and resourceful and creative. “This lifestyle” means a lot more photos, and my favorite fast and easy meals, our city adventures with Ellie and maybe George, birthdays, anniversaries, hard times, happy reflections, and lots more.

I’m not a rock star [insert mom/wife/employee here], but I try. I’m figuring it out just like everyone else. And this blog will continue to follow my journey.

Cheers to making 2017 a better year!

Xo. Stephanie

PS-I love this sweet little pic of me and my girl (and the view!) on the rooftop of our new apartment building.

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