Friendsgiving: Gelato Caramel Brownie Sundaes

Did you catch the Friendsgiving post I shared on Saturday? Well today I'm excited to be partnering with Collective Bias, Inc. and Hagan Daz to show you what served for dessert. All opinions, like always, are mine (but the great tasting ice cream dessert can be yours too ;) #Feast4All #CollectiveBias

Before we get to this delicious dessert, a little update: Ben and I are having lots of fun in California (you can follow along on instagram here) and it really blows my mind that some people expect seventy degree weather in November. Can it really be just a week ago that we were waking up to a winter wonderland in the frozen tundra of Ohio? If I wasn't so excited about the idea of a white Christmas (and, you know, if Ben didn't have to go back to work), we might not ever leave. 

Anyway, back to this deliciousness. One of my favorite desserts is a classic brownie sunday. It doesn't get much better than a fudgy brownie smothered in vanilla (or mint chocolate chip) ice cream. I like the brownie warm and the ice cream frozen solid and I'll savor the whole thing with a fork. 

So, in an attempt to put a spin on a classic favorite, I switched out the ice cream for HÄAGEN-DAZS® new Gelato Bars in the Caramel Vanilla Pizzelle flavor for our little friendsgiving last week. It was like having a delicious vanilla ice cream, ribbons of caramel, and shavings of really good chocolate and crunchy Italian-style pizelle cookies stacked over a warm brownie ...yum! 

All you need: 
  • 1 pan of brownies (you can opt for the box, or try our favorite homemade recipe here
  • 1 box of HÄAGEN-DAZS® Gelato Bars in Caramel Vanilla Pizzelle (I used half a bar for each serving and grabbed them from the frozen section at Walmart)
  • a bit of chocolate sauce (or caramel sauce) 
  • whipped cream optional

All you'll do: 
  • Chop up each gelato bar into cubes using a chef knife after removing the stick (I wiggled mine right out)
  • Arrange on top of a piece of warm brownie
  • Drizzle with your choice of chocolate or caramel sauce and top with whipped cream if desired. 
  • Serve immediately

**You could make them beforehand and put them back in the freezer if you're willing to give up your warm brownies

^I thought about serving them in mason jars but realized I'd need quite a bit more brownie + gelato bar per serving if I wanted to do that (which would be totally fine if we hadn't just stuffed ourselves with lots of dinner)

^I might not have gotten kid friendly awards for the dinner dishes, but the little ones liked these as much as the adults  

^Ben digging in

for more thanksgiving recipe ideas check out here and here 

Friendsgiving in our new place!

Last week's motivation to get unpacked was a little friendsgiving we had (and our first dinner guests) before heading out to California. I sure do love cooking in our new kitchen and was pleasantly surprised with how most of the dishes turned out (plus we survived a dinner party without a working dishwasher). Other than the crescent rolls, which have been our favorite since I made them for a family thanksgiving a few years ago, everything we made was new. If it had been a higher profile dinner that might have been a bit stressful, but I loved the excuse to try out recipes and friends who took seconds on the ones that were less than awesome (ahem, the salmon).

A few pictures of the dinner + what we cooked:

What we served:

The verdict:

The honey glazed carrots were awesome (and I really liked the touch of balsamic). We'll definitely be making those again. I realized I prefer salmon with a sauce seasoning and not crusted in cheese but the disappointing part of this dish was more in the way we cooked the salmon than in the actual flavoring (lesson learned - I'll go back to letting Ben cook fish the way he wants to). The potatoes were great, and the rolls are always the hit of any dinner.

CorningWare kindly sent over a few pieces from their new CW line for our dinner and I love the fun, vibrant colors! The contemporary design made them perfect for our less traditional friendsgiving but they're also something I'll use for regular day-to-day cooking (I only wish I had more open storage in the kitchen because I love the way the colors look when the pieces all nest together).

^the dishes are made from durable stoneware and are microwave + dishwasher safe -- now we just need to get a working dishwasher so we can take advantage of that
^I was excited to pull out these fun crystal napkin rings we got for our wedding (they sat at my parents' house for a few years and we just got them this spring so this was their big debut ;)
^caramel, gelato, brownie, chocolate ....more details on the dessert coming soon 
^my favorite leftovers were these potatoes - I'm not sure why I don't cook with red potatoes more often (side note: they were sooo much cheaper to buy at Walmart than at Kroger) 
^One thing I've never had to do is think about kid friendly meals ... this little guy was a trooper, trying a bit of everything at dinner :) 
^and a quick shot of my plate (although after eating the best salmon of my life today in California, pictures of this fish make me cringe a bit :)

So I want to know, are you having a traditional thanksgiving with family this year or celebrating with friends? Would you ever consider branching out from Turkey? Or is the bird a must? 

Street Art and Flying


Happy Friday!

Yesterday Ben and I packed up (a natural thing to do after unpacking for a full week) and traded the snowy tundra of Ohio for some lovely California warmth. I'll be much too far along to travel at Christmas so an extended Thanksgiving trip it is!

Did you know that everyone is incredibly friendly when you're pregnant and traveling? From the middle aged couple in the security line who wanted to know if it was our first to the sweet lady at the cafe who showed me a picture of her brand new grandson (whose mother was told at all three ultrasounds that her child would be a girl....), everyone wanted to strike up conversation. The cake goes to the stewardess on our five hour flight who told the other Southwest passengers the back of the plane was full and didn't let anyone come sit in the row with me and Ben. You better believe with that extra seat I busted out my body pillow (I wasn't going to be caught sleeping without it for two weeks) and took the best two hour nap I've had in awhile. Bless that woman (and body pillows, and husbands that let you sprawl out over them).

Other than a bit of back pain, some crazy turbulence, and a small incident of lost luggage (they got it to us a few hours later), it was a relatively easy day of flying. One of my favorite parts was having all those hours to just sit on the plane and feel Baby move all around. I haven't done much sitting in the past two weeks and I'd almost forgotten how much I enjoy just treasuring these simple moments. At thirty-two weeks tomorrow, I don't have that much longer to do it.

Have a wonderful weekend - and enjoy a few pictures of our favorite street art in downtown Findlay (who knew Findlay had such neat art?):

^just blending in

^I've been wearing this rose gold watch non-stop and I really love not having to check my phone when I want to know the time :) 

on me:
sweater: sheinside, c/o
blouse: Adrienne Vittacini
denim: Pink Blush Maternity, c/o
boots: Michael Kors
watch: Aeropostale, c/o

do me a favor and check out this giveaway


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