Happy Tuesday! I hope all of you folks in America had a great Labor Day weekend. I actually had to look up why exactly we celebrate Labor Day (should I admit this?) and found that it’s a “yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.” I’ll take it!
I drove home on Friday and spent the long weekend hanging out with my family, catching up on sleep, doing schoolwork, playing with my puppy, and even taking an accidental nap. A low-key weekend was exactly what I needed after the whirlwind that the past 5 weeks or so at school have been.
Of course, one of the ways I love to unwind is cooking. On Monday, I made baked sweet potato fries to go with our burgers, salads, and steamed broccoli for our Labor Day cookout. I used my favorite crispy sweet potato wedges recipe and just extended the cooking time by about 5 minutes. It had been way too long since I’d had sweet potatoes and I’d forgotten how good they can be!
I also whipped up a batch of soft and chewy monster cookies. (squash-free monster cookies, thank-you-very-much).I wrapped some of them up to take back to school for thank-you presents and surprise gifts for a couple of friends. I placed stacks of cookies in clear plastic bags and tied each one with craft-store raffia, which seemed appropriate for fall.
I also experimented with a new type of energy bite, oatmeal raisin, since I love these peanut butter chocolate chip energy bites. They’re actually the most popular recipe on the blog to date! The oatmeal raisin version was great, too, and I’ll be sure to share the recipe soon.And although I did a few small cooking projects, I mostly just enjoyed my mom’s fabulous cooking, like her awesome fajitas.
And the best ever chicken parmesan with whole wheat angel hair pasta. We usually follow Rachael Ray’s recipe for grilled chicken parmesan with a spicy tomato sauce, and it’s one of my all-time favorite meals.I love our family dinners and that’s actually one of the biggest things I miss when I’m at school. Hopefully, I won’t be disinherited from posting this picture, but I love it because I caught everyone while we were all cracking up. And I couldn’t end a post about being at home without including a picture or two of Gracie, who was most likely under the table in the above picture. Aren’t sleeping dogs the cutest?Questions for you:
How’d you celebrate Labor Day weekend?
Favorite use for sweet potatoes?
Favorite thing your mom makes?
Ellen @ My Uncommon Everyday says
Sounds like you had a great weekend at home! Family dinners are definitely one of the things I miss most when I’m at school, too.
I think I just love sweet potatoes in general, but I especially like roasted sweet potatoes and sweet potato fries 🙂 And my favorite mom-made meal is stromboli!
I think I’ve only had stromboli once or tie, but I remember it being SO good!
Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy says
Okay, so I have a HUGE sweet potato fries craving now. Fries are my favourite way to use sweet potatoes, although I do like it as mash too.
Emily @ My Healthyish Life says
Family dinners are my favorite thing. We had them every night growing up and still do when we’re all together. Glad you had a great weekend! Favorite thing my mom makes: I don’t know the proper term for it but I call it “chicken in the red pot.” She knows what I mean 🙂
We had family dinners every night growing up, too, and they’re definitely extra special now that they don’t happen so often 🙂
I totally relaxed and enjoyed a staycation at home! It was nice to just sleep in and get done what needed to be done 🙂 And I made some Butterfinger fudge 🙂 Now to get rid of it and out of my kitchen so I stop eating it!
That fudge sounds AMAZING!
Aw Gracie! What a cutie.
Once I went to college, I began to really want family time! I soak it up the best I can now.
Those fajitas look banging. Now that all the kids are out the house, my mom prefers going to a restaurant to cooking. Haha!
Sweet potato fries are definitely the best way to eat sweet potatoes, in my opinion.
I think I can definitely appreciate family time more now that I’m in college..and home-cooking!
Alison @ Sweetly Petite says
Gracie is just adorable! I love love love the picture of you and her together- cuteness overload 😉 Your food looks amazing especially those energy bites. Yum!
I didn’t go home for Labor day weekend, but my family did come visit me on Sunday evening and we all went out to dinner. It was definitely nice catching up, my family dinner table looks a lot like yours- lots of laughing and joking all around 🙂
Aw I love when family comes to visit at school! So glad you had a good time with yours 🙂
Courtney @ Running For Cupcakes says
Mmm those monster cookies look delicious. I wish Chapel Hill was just a liiiiitle closer to Wilmington 😉
Right?! I would totally make some monster cookies for you 🙂
We had a similar Bank holiday in the UK a couple of weeks ago and I always find that an extended weekend is the best way to recharge the batteries 🙂
Your little gift bags also look really cute and I apologise in advance for stealing the idea for some of my Christmas presents this year! xx
Feel free to borrow the idea! It’s an easy way to make cookies look extra cute 🙂
Those little cookie packages are so cute! Super sweet of you :). I love sweet potatoes in all forms, but Thanksgiving sweet potato casserole with melted marshmallows and maple pecan topping has got to be my fav!
The maple pecan topping is to die for! I’ve definitely been guilty of just eating the topping before…
Lauren @ ihadabiglunch says
Haha squash-free monster cookies…that’s the way to go. I love Labor Day food! Sweet potato fries are a favorite of mine but I haven’t made them in so long! I have to get back on the sweet potato train!
GiGi Eats says
Aren’t you so sweet with your cookie gifts!! 🙂 I made cookies for manfriend the other day and he was SOO thankful! haha cause who doesn’t love sugar?
Haha I bet man friend loved that 🙂
Georgie Morley says
Your pup makes my heart melt – so cute!
All your food looks delish and I definitely gotta make me some sweet potato fries because it’s been way too long.
Alison @ Daily Moves and Grooves says
That’s so nice that you were able to go home!! Love that candid photo of you eating with your family. Um *raises hand* I’ll take some of those cookies if you have extra leftover… 😉
Haha! Wish I could send you some cookies! 🙂
Dani @ Dani California Cooks says
I spent Labor Day with my family as well! And Gracie is the CUTEST. Omigosh. Looks like a little simba 🙂
She’s totally like a little Simba! Love it 🙂