Easy Dinner: Grilled Flank Steak Sandwiches

If you have any gatherings coming up, putting these Grilled Flank Steak Sandwiches on the menu is really good idea. They make a really great alternative to a burger, and feel much more special. So mouth watering, you may need to make these sandwiches tonight, just to “test” them for guests. : ) And don’t miss the White Cheddar Spread recipe that’s included below.

Living With Kids: Lauren Benninger

You’re going to love getting to know Lauren Benninger. She and her husband CJ live with their three kids in a suburb of Detroit. Lauren is a lawyer. CJ is a photographer. And because one of their children has a medical condition, they’ve really had to hunker down throughout this pandemic, and have had to rethink the ways they keep their family safe and healthy. Lauren’s home is a perfect mid-century treasure and they have styled it with thoughtful pieces, beautiful art (including stunning photos from CJ) and really charming touches that make it feel special. Welcome, Lauren!

Planting a Container Garden

It’s amazing what you can grow in pots! Containers can add a lot of interest in a landscaped yard, make apartment landings more beautiful, and make things cheery indoors. As I’m sure you can guess, comprehensive information about container gardening can’t fit into this single post. So consider this an overview that covers prep, planting essentials, and miscellaneous tips to get you started.

Bonus: the information in this post applies to both vegetable container gardens and decorative ones (sometimes gardens can be both!). And it applies to indoor gardens as well.

Living With Kids: Sara Davis

Meet Sara. If you’ve got a chalkboard in your house and you’ve scoured Pinterest for cute ideas on how to get it looking like…well…the cute ones on Pinterest, chances are you’ve already met her! I asked her a few questions and she answered them all perfectly, but I sensed that there was more content in her than charming chalkboards and fabulous DIYs. And here she is: the brave Sara who took a leap outside her comfort zone to share herself with us. I really hope you enjoy her.

Mini Baked Cherry Crisps

Cherry season is fleeting so let’s take advantage of it and make some mini baked cherry crisps. Cherries are often cloaked in a buttery double crust and baked to bubbling perfection. But who has time to wait for pie?! Let’s do a crisp instead. Crisp topping is essentially streusel. And as we all know, streusel makes nearly everything better.

Pecans are a go-to in this topping because they have such a delightful little crunch and marry well with the brown sugar in the topping. You’ll love the sweet, nutty crunch with every bite of juicy fruit. The cherries, especially if they are ripe off the tree, will have enough flavor on their own. They just need the teensiest amount of flavor boosters in the form of fresh lemon juice (to brighten), and vanilla and almond extracts (to ever-so-slightly enhance the cherry flavor). You can also add a little cornstarch to help thicken the juices. A little sugar helps too, but you can certainly leave the sugar out of the filling. The topping is perfectly sweet.

Living With Kids: Rebecca Brown

I like Becky Brown very much. Her design plans are fascinating, the fresh ideas she and her family have already executed in and around their home make me smile, and her interview reads like a welcome chat with a dear friend. But there’s more. Her style is seeped through with so much substance and pure love that it’s not hard to walk away from this tour feeling refreshed about so much more than her outrageously happy green homework table. Although that table is more than enough, isn’t it? Enjoy this gorgeous  interview, friends! (And the photos are pretty, too!)

Newsletter: How My Conservative Mom Raised Lots of Liberal Feminists

My mom is terrific. I got really lucky. I understood she was a better than average mom by the time I was a teenager, and as I’ve raised my own family, I’ve come to understand how really, really good she was at parenting. I’m one of 8 kids (four girls, four boys), and my siblings are kind, smart, creative, interesting, hard-working, and actively engaged in bettering the world around them. Here are 25 stories/observations about my mom that I hope paint a picture of how I ended up a liberal feminist designer and mother of six, even though my mom has always been politically conservative, and I’ve never heard her call herself a feminist.

Click here to read the full newsletter.

DIY: Monogram Soap Bottles

These Etched Monogram Soap Bottles are such a satisfying project. They look great, they’re functional, they work in kitchens or bathrooms or classrooms, and they make a great gift — a housewarming gift, a hostess gift, a neighbor gift at the holidays, a teacher gift — or make some for your own house.

The etching is so fun to do, you’ll want to etch every piece of glassware you have. Gather friends and have an etching party! Come and check out this simple project.

Newsletter & Link List

Gabrielle wasn’t always my name. When I was born, my parents named me Shoshanna. And then later they switched my name to Gabrielle. I had known about the name switch since I was very young — I remember seeing the name Shoshanna on some sort of form (maybe from the hospital?) in our family files. But a couple of weeks ago, when my mom was here visiting, she told me another part of my naming story.

Click here to read the full newsletter and find the link list.

Living With Kids: Meg Zaletel

Meg Zaletel lives in Anchorage, Alaska. Hers is a lovely, lovely story, and I found myself re-reading sections of this interview more than once. There’s a lot to take in, from wild paint colors and Alaskan decor to a wonderful philosophy on decorating with Zelda in mind from the very beginning. I know it will make your day better. I’m pleased to introduce to you this lovely family! Enjoy the tour.

My Twitter Thread on Abortion

Twitter Thread on Abortion by popular design and mom blogger, Design Mom
Twitter Thread on Abortion by popular design and mom blogger, Design Mom

Note from Design Mom: Two years ago, I tried something new. I wrote a Twitter thread for the first time. That first thread is about abortion, irresponsible ejaculations, why politicians who claim to care about abortion don’t really care, and how I think we need to approach the topic of abortion differently.  I’m republishing it here today to mark the anniversary (and because I know many of you don’t use Twitter).

I’m a mother of six, and a Mormon. I have a good understanding of arguments surrounding abortion, religious and otherwise. I’ve been listening to men grandstand about women’s reproductive rights, and I’m convinced men actually have zero interest in stopping abortion. Here’s why…

If you want to stop abortion, you need to prevent unwanted pregnancies. And men are 100% responsible for unwanted pregnancies. No for real, they are. Perhaps you are thinking: IT TAKES TWO! And yes, it does take two for _intentional_ pregnancies.

But ALL unwanted pregnancies are caused by the irresponsible ejaculations of men. Period. Don’t believe me? Let me walk you through it. Let’s start with this: women’s eggs are only fertile about 2 days each month. And that’s for a limited number of years.

Crock Pot Recipe: Teriyaki Pulled Pork Bowls with Lime Juice Coleslaw and Coconut Rice

Slow Cooker Teriyaki Pulled Pork Bowls

Pulled pork is one of those things that you can pretty much turn into any meal. It’s great in tacos. It makes the best sandwiches. And guess what? It’s great in a layered burrito bowl too. This is a version of a pulled pork burrito bowl, only it has Hawaiian flavors going on instead of Mexican.

The slow cooker is my preferred way to make this teriyaki pulled pork, but I’ve also tested it out in the oven. Both work great, but it’s nice not having to heat up the house, so slow cooker it is.

Living With Kids: Becca Garber

I’m not sure what’s most visually stunning in this tour: Mount Etna or the fireplace! (That shot above is the kitchen window view. Gulp.) But then there’s Becca’s super intentional style of parenting and innate gratitude for her life, and the views somehow become secondary.

The Garbers are an American family on a military tour that ends this summer, so I’m glad we have the chance to tour their home before they head off on another adventure. Just one look out that kitchen window, and I’m sure it’s going to be incredibly difficult to say goodbye to this space and pace of living with their kids in Southern Italy. Friends, welcome to the Garber home!

How To Properly Iron A Shirt

6 Secrets to a Properly Ironed Shirt featured by popular lifestyle blogger, Gabrielle of Design Mom

Secret #1: Start with a properly laundered shirt. Check the care label and follow the recommendations. Watch the temperature, because washing shirts in water that is too hot can cause the interfacing in the collar and cuffs to shrink, causing puckering and impossible wrinkling. And pay particular attention to any dirt on the cuffs or collar, or in the underarms, because ironing stains will set them permanently.

Newsletter: Why Are We Harassing Trans People?

Hey there! This newsletter is so long that I broke it up into Part 1 and Part 2.

In Part 1: Three approaches to thinking about gender and how strict gender norms limit all of us unnecessarily. Click here to read the full newsletter.

In Part 2: An exploration of gender and sports and what it would look like if all genders competed together. Plus a look at the paranoia around bathrooms and trans people. Click here to read the full newsletter.

Easy Natural Dye For Easter Eggs

Making easy natural dyes for easter eggs is super simple, but also really fun — it feels like a combination of science and magic. To get the full color spectrum you’ll need red cabbage, yellow onions, beets, tumeric, blueberries and vinegar. Making the dyes is quick, putting the eggs in the dye is quick. The only thing that requires a bit of patience is letting your eggs sit in the dye bath until they reach the desired color intensity.

Ready to get dyeing? You’ll find all the notes and tips below.

No-Bake Berry Cheesecake Recipe

Let’s start with the assumption you love cheesecake. Okay. Good. But there are two types of cheesecake eaters in this world. There are those who want their cheesecake slice to act as a sugar-bomb, satisfying every ounce of sweet tooth they have. They top their cheesecakes with syrupy fruits or decadent chocolate and caramel. And then there are those who really just want to sit down with a bowl of berries and slightly sweetened freshly whipped cream (possibly because they already had three cookies with their afternoon coffee earlier), and so they want a cheesecake that represents the best of summer freshness.

This No-Bake Berry Cheesecake Recipe falls into the latter of those two categories. It’s as simple to put together as it is fresh-tasting. The graham cracker crust comes together easily, with slight sweetness from both white and brown sugars, giving it a bit more of a sweet depth. The cheesecake mixture is on the fresh side, balanced with a pinch of lemon zest, but still plenty rich with that heavy cream, whipped into goodness. And then the berries come through in a jam layer as well as fresh berries on top.

These mini-desserts were put together in several layers, with an extra crust layer in the middle because it seems to be everyone’s favorite part of a cheesecake, and this way you get a little crust in every bite.

Living With Kids: Michelle Turchini

As Michelle describes it, she’s been living a semi-permanent life for the past eight years. Since she and her husband have added three daughters – four year old twins and a two-and-a-half year old – they’ve moved country three times to Hong Kong, Australia, and California, moved house five times, and completely remodeled their new home that we’re touring today. Whew!

Luckily, it looks like Michelle and her family have finally found home. And oh my…it’s a gorgeous spot. Please enjoy the beauty, Friends!

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