Friday Things

Time for an installment of Friday Things:

1. I’m going to The Big Potluck this weekend and can’t wait.

75 bloggers will be in attendance, and we have a packed lineup of events, speakers, and of course, eating and socializing.

This day that I spent with Matt was a life-changing one and can’t wait to see him. And Ree. And 75 people who I either know and can’t wait to see again, or know virtually and will finally get to meet.

It’s in Southern California’s wine country, about an hour away from San Diego. I love the Temecula area and have plenty of fond pre-child impromptu winery tasting expeditions with my husband. An hour away, but world’s apart, and a perfect setting for a big ole potluck.

2. Freaker Vanilla Ice-Ing bottle insulator for your water bottle, wine bottle, or anything that gets sweaty. How freaking cute is that print.

Scott and I used to live in Wilmington, NC (13 years ago), where they’re made. Such fun memories.

3. Ben Affleck joined the Live Below The Line Challenge, bringing awareness to global poverty. Participants are only allowed to spend $1.50 per day for food and drink.

This article gives some tips on what to do, like going to Sam’s Club for free samples.

4. I’m a contributor in the free e-cookbook, Fresh, Fruity, and Fabulous Fruit Recipes: 25 Summer Desserts with Fruit

If you’re in need of some lighter, more summery dessert recipes, check out the free download.

They featured my Chocolate Chip and Cherry Blondies, perfect for all those summer cherries or use peaches, nectarines, or whatever is seasonal

5. This enameled cast iron Le Creuset Flower Cocotte, $150. The flower shape is just too cute and the color is so springy and fresh. I love yellow.

6. Loving the Haute Hippie look. The sunglasses, the red sequin jacket ($985) and gold sequin skirt. The beige light that screams dingy retro chic is right up my alley, too.

7. My Vanilla-Avocado Banana Ice Cream was featured in Parade Magazine’s Six Creative, Delicious Ways to Use Avocado

Thanks to Lori the RecipeGirl for including me.

8. Cookie Jar with Enamel Flower Market Lid – $54 from MacKenzie-Childs

Tea Kettle, $130

Their entire site and store is just a feast for the eyes. I could spend $20,000 in under 20 minutes. I wish I was joking. The store has some seriously gorgeous pieces but I’ll need to win the lottery first.

9. Tracy’s Cheddar Cheese Bread looks ridiculously good. And easy.

I’m all about easy, 5-minute loaves

Cinnamon-Sugar Crust Cinnamon-Ribbon Bread

10. DIY: Ceate a Sweet and Savory Dessert Crostini Bar – This sure beats the same chips and dips on the average party table

One of their suggested toppings is homemade nut butter. I’ve got that covered, and then some.

Honey Roasted Butterscotch White Chocolate Peanut Butter (GF) – My favorite nut butter that I’ve ever made

What are your Friday Things?

If you’ve made anything, done, seen, or bought anything fabulous recently, feel free to link it up in the comments.

Blogger meetups or events you’ve been to? Conferences or events you’ve attended or want to attend?

I’ve been on many, and am really excited that Big Potluck was capped at 75 people so it’ll be more intimate and less herd-like. I’m so excited to see old friends and meet people I’ve wanted to meet for years.

Eating on $1.50 a Day?

I could eat on $1.50 a day, and many days probably come close. Not eating meat is a huge cost savings, and I’m a frugal shopper in general. I buy whatever produce is on sale and buy store-brands of anything I can. With planning, not impulse-buying, shopping from a mental list of things I know I need and not things that I may want but aren’t practical (another expensive condiment for example), I try to shop as frugally as possible.

Even simple things like not eating out, not grabbing coffee out, not buying bottled water when out; planning ahead and doing it all at home slashes monthly expenditures, especially when you’re doing it as a family.

That said, some days I spend a ridiculous amount more when I’m baking all day and go through a pound of butter, sugar, and chocolate. Before noon.

Have a great weekend and check back for two great giveaways!


61 Responses to “Friday Things”

  1. Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious — April 26, 2013 at 12:11 am (#

    Happy Friday! Can’t wait to see you tomorrow! And wow, vanilla avocado banana ice cream? I’m there! Oh and congrats on the Parade feature – you rock!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 12:23 am (#

      Girl you too! So excited! And I made my cake! I figured it out. PB and chocolate are the stars…shocking, right? :)

    • Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious — April 26, 2013 at 12:36 am (#

      Haha I had a feeling you’d go that route! Still need to make my coffee cake – will make it tomorrow! :)

  2. Ellen — April 26, 2013 at 12:54 am (#

    Wow, the blogger thing sounds like such fun, and congrats on getting your recipe in the cookbook! Well played:)
    I myself am still on a major springtime produce bender, making more stuff with artichokes:

  3. Michelle @ Eat Move Balance — April 26, 2013 at 2:17 am (#

    I’m going to San Diego (and Temecula) for the first time this summer. I can’t wait. A very good friend grew up there, and has invited me and Bob to join her in a trip home. I’ve only heard wonderful things about the area!!

    Love that Le Creuset dish–how adorable!!

  4. Marie @ Little Kitchie — April 26, 2013 at 4:13 am (#

    Oh that flower-shaped Le Creuset! I’m in love!!! It’s my birthday next week, maybe I should fwd this post to my husband… ;)

    Have so much fun this weekend! Can’t wait to hear all about it!

  5. Colleen @ What's Baking in the Barbershop?! — April 26, 2013 at 4:37 am (#

    Have a wonderful time this weekend – what an amazing event!
    Now that you’ve got me hooked on making my own peanut butter, I totally plan to make the butterscotch white chocolate flavor – white chocolate is my sister’s FAVORITE, so I’m going to make a batch for her upcoming birthday :)

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 5:15 am (#

      It’s seriously THE BEST Pb ever. I love that one. I put like 25-30 versions in my cookbook and that’s my fave! I did make some with Baileys Irish Cream and that was crazy good, too. I have a recipe for homemade baileys, too. You can make homemade baileys and pour a little into the PB with some white choc :)

      But the butterscotch PB is killer. Lmk what you end up making!

  6. Paula — April 26, 2013 at 4:43 am (#

    Congratulations on the recipe features! I really enjoy cooking in cast iron so love the Le Creuset–great color, great shape. I’m planning to try making some homemade mayo this weekend–I’ve wanted to try that for a while and as for baking, I have to try your cinnamon bread. Have a great time at the Potluck–the setting sounds wonderful!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 5:17 am (#

      Homemade mayo. I do mustard, balsamic reduction, PB, and many other dressings but never mayo! I know you need to have a food proc running and drizzle in oil while beating eggs. Hope it turns out for you! LMK!

  7. Heather (Where's the Beach) — April 26, 2013 at 5:17 am (#

    That cookie jar is fantastic! But probably even better is your trip. How cool. Can’t wait to hear all about it.

  8. Mary Frances @ The Sweet Tooth Life — April 26, 2013 at 5:19 am (#

    That yellow pot is SO cute! And congratulations on all those features! You have such creative and delicious recipes. Thanks for sharing them with us. Please tell us about the blogger conference later- it sounds like it will be do much fun!

  9. Laura Dembowski — April 26, 2013 at 5:39 am (#

    The Big Potluck sounds so cool! Have an amazing time! Love that flower Le Crueset too.

  10. Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat — April 26, 2013 at 5:43 am (#

    I’m so excited about the Vanilla Avocado Banana Ice Cream! I’m lactose intolerant, so this will be perfect for me if I use almond milk. I can’t wait to make it!!!!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 6:29 am (#

      It’s excellent and so creamy! Dont be skimpy with the sugar and close your eyes and it’ll taste like ice cream…not kidding!

    • Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat — April 26, 2013 at 7:25 am (#

      I totally believe it! I think it’s going to be amazing! Yay!!

  11. Eva @ Eva Bakes — April 26, 2013 at 6:20 am (#

    Have a great time – can’t wait to hear all about your fun weekend!

  12. jackie @ marin mama cooks — April 26, 2013 at 6:27 am (#

    Have a rockin weekend girl! That blogger event sounds more up my alley with 75 people rather than a huge event with 200 plus. I’m sure you will learn tons and have a great time just hanging with fellow foodies :) I’m not a big crowd person at all. Big crowds and events just intimidate me and I feel like I get lost in the crowd. Ok, that Le Creuset pot is cute, but I don’t think it would be fun to cook in. I mean you would scrape around the sides and the grooves every time you gave your dish a stir. No thanks! I’ll stick to the basic, boring round shape, as It gets the job done! Ok, congrats on all your publications! You rock! xoxo, Jackie

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 6:28 am (#

      scrape around the sides and the grooves every time you gave your dish a stir <– spoken like a true chef but it sure is cute :) Have a great weekend too!

  13. Aimee @ ShugarySweets — April 26, 2013 at 6:49 am (#

    I love the dessert crostini bar. That is just awesome.

  14. Tieghan — April 26, 2013 at 6:50 am (#

    I am so jealous! I want to be headed to CA with all you guys. Maybe next year!

    That Le Creuset Flower Cocotte has my name written ALL over it So cute!
    Have fun this weekend!!

  15. Joanne — April 26, 2013 at 7:21 am (#

    Oooo have fun this weekend! I’m going to the BSP on the east coast in July and CAN’T.WAIT. Literally counting down the days.

    Also…I want those cherry chocolate blondies. In my belly. Now.

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 8:27 am (#

      Oh that is awesome you’re going, too! I can’t believe it’s already here…felt like months ago that I signed up and it was, actually. And it’s here now!

  16. sally @ sallys baking addiction — April 26, 2013 at 8:16 am (#

    So many things I want and need!! The tea kettle and cookie jar lid, to start – so cute. That red sequin jacket? Oh just $1K. Someday I’ll have that money. ;) And congrats on the avocado ice cream feature Averie! It looks amazing. Love avocados. And have so much fun this weekend, I want to hear all about it! I’ve never been to a blogging conference. I feel like I live in a hole. And last but not least – your cinnamon sugar crusted bread! We’re making it tomorrow! Today I’m getting a pedicure with my friend… feels good to indulge!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 8:27 am (#

      Please LMK how the bread goes! We need to go on our own blogging conference. To the mall or a tropical island :)

  17. Reba- Not So Perfect Life — April 26, 2013 at 8:16 am (#

    I am in love with several items on your post today… But seriously flower dish?!? I have been putting off buying one of those pots but I might HAVE to get one now.

  18. Kristin @ Dizzy Busy and Hungry! — April 26, 2013 at 8:30 am (#

    Congrats on your recipe getting featured! Vanilla-Avocado-Banana sounds like an awesome flavor combo!

  19. Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl — April 26, 2013 at 8:33 am (#

    Loving the Flower Cocotte so much. Such a unique shape and a great color!

  20. Jenny @ Paleofoodiekitchen — April 26, 2013 at 9:51 am (#

    Oh wow that Big Potluck event sounds like a lot of fun! Looking forward to the food pics that you would be posting. I will also be in Temecula tomorrow but for the Rogue Runner event at Vail lake =)

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 11:58 am (#

      Have fun at your running event! Wow, sounds like Temecula will be pretty busy this weekend! (and I didn’t know you were local to SoCal!)

  21. Alexandra @ Delicious Knowledge — April 26, 2013 at 10:38 am (#

    Happy friday! Have so much fun at the Big Potluck- looks like a great group of bloggers! I think I could eat on 1.50 a day as a challenge, but it would be very, very difficult to do. I eat lots of lentils, beans, which are cheap but I also eat lots of vegetables & fruit- 1.50 is as much as I pay for a # of apples! Im really happy to see more celebrities bringing this issue up.

  22. Sue/the view from great island — April 26, 2013 at 11:00 am (#

    The Big Potluck sounds like tons of fun, and that hotel is not half bad! Have fun!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 26, 2013 at 11:55 am (#

      I’ve never been to that property but I do love Temecula and the whole vibe. Wish you were coming to this one!

  23. Christine (The Raw Project) — April 26, 2013 at 1:24 pm (#

    Happy Friday and great list of things! Have a blast at the pot luck, sounds great!

  24. Angela @ Canned Time — April 26, 2013 at 1:32 pm (#

    Have a wonderful time at the conference Averie. And a HUGE congrats on the Pumpkin Lover’s Cookbook news
    AWESOME ! ♥
    Counting the days to get your Peanut Butter Book and now this news, SUPER!
    Travel safely Girl :)

  25. Katie — April 26, 2013 at 1:32 pm (#

    I have mixed feelings about the $1.50 thing. I mean, most days I probably spent three times that, and I rarely if ever eat out, pack my own lunch, and cook at home all the time. Still, if I eat a big salad (and I do daily), that’s got to be close to $5 right there. The thing about going to Sam’s for samples is just degrading, and ridiculous, in my opinion. Don’t you need to pay to just go in there anyway?

    Congrats on all the recipe features!

    My best thing of the week is the cashew butter I made yesterday. And the mountain bike I am currently shopping for. Bike #4, baby!

  26. Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — April 26, 2013 at 1:40 pm (#

    Have the BEST time this weekend, Averie! Looks like you’re in for a few days of beautiful scenery and great company!

  27. Liz (Little Bitty Bakes) — April 26, 2013 at 5:38 pm (#

    I keep seeing all these ‘big potluck’ related photos on Instagram – sounds so fun, and the location I’m sure makes it even more enjoyable. If I had to live on $1.50 a day, I think I would use $1 for a greek yogurt, and then eat spoonfuls of peanut butter with the remaining 50 cents. :)

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 27, 2013 at 1:45 am (#

      $1 for a greek yogurt, and then eat spoonfuls of peanut butter with the remaining 50 cents <– love the way you think!

  28. Taylor — April 26, 2013 at 8:08 pm (#

    I lived in Wilmington, NC 13 years ago too!! I feel like I’ve met a famous person now haha. P.S. I’m making that cinnamon bread soon!

  29. Linda — April 26, 2013 at 8:20 pm (#

    Have fun at the potluck…. I’d say your all pretty lucky!! I would love to win the lottery and shop at Mackenzie Childa too!!!

  30. carol | a cup of mascarpone — April 27, 2013 at 8:46 am (#

    I know you’re having an amazing time, Averie! I’m loving your photos on instagram…as I follow along!!!

  31. Sharon — April 27, 2013 at 10:41 am (#

    What an amazing weekend! Can’t wait to hear every detail!
    Enjoy! (and take lots of photos!)

  32. J.S. @ Sun Diego Eats — April 27, 2013 at 12:00 pm (#

    a) those cherry and chocolate blondies look amazing. I wanna eat them with Cherry Garcia for double cherry and chocolate-ness

    b) at first instead of “pre-child impromptu wine tasting” I read “childhood impromptu wine tasting” haha.

  33. marla — April 27, 2013 at 2:37 pm (#

    So many great finds Averie ~ I need that flower cocotte pronto!

  34. Trish - Mom On Timeout — April 27, 2013 at 8:56 pm (#

    Geez your life sounds exciting right now! Good for you Averie! I can’t wait to hear about the blogger event – sounds awesome!

  35. honeywhatscooking — April 27, 2013 at 9:56 pm (#

    wow, i’m intrigued. vanilla banana avocado ice cream? I gotta check out this recipe. I love healthy ice cream that doesn’t’ taste healthy. Love avocado, just made deviled eggs today with them.

  36. Good — April 28, 2013 at 1:08 am (#

    Ooh that le creuset flower-pot is soo pretty…I’ve decided to get a Le creuset, but I think that shape might be a little less practical. And that insulator?! So cute! Oh I had such a bless this week, a friend is visiting me, and we had some crazy shopping-tours! And I cooked&baked plenty yummy stuff for her, naked apples and vegan pancakes today for breakfast, the last day :( but we had so much fun!
    I bought a New Diana-mini camera, a backpack, and gray high waisted skinnies! I’m in loove :))

  37. Valerie — April 28, 2013 at 9:33 am (#

    Oh…I was wondering what all the #btp1 hashtags were about! (Sometimes I’m afraid to ask because it’s probably something I should already know.) :D Sounds like fun!!

    Love the Haute Hippie look too – especially those glasses! ♥

  38. Kristen — April 28, 2013 at 6:42 pm (#

    I hope you had such a wonderful time at the potluck! It looked like a great group of people were there!
    Those MacKenzie Childs items are so gorgeous! And the eating below the line challenge? Wow. That is quite the challenge indeed!

  39. Nutmeg Nanny — April 28, 2013 at 6:52 pm (#

    So many adorable products here :) love the tea kettle! The live below the line challenge is intriguing, I can’t fathom it.

  40. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies — April 29, 2013 at 12:18 pm (#

    I hope you had an awesome time at the Potluck! I love that Le Creuset cocotte–I totally need that. Their yellow stuff is my favorite too.

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 29, 2013 at 4:25 pm (#

      Yellow is my fave color for lots of things, especially kitchen stuff. Part of the reason I love your site so much is the cheery yellow :)

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