Bliss, thoughts on love, a simple dinner, and a tribute to Jennie and her loss.

I just had one of the best weekends of my summer. P and I spent Friday-Sunday morning camping on Mt. Hood. We enjoyed meals, too much wine, and lots of laughs together. I missed him so much when I went to work this morning, my heart ached a bit. I honestly couldn’t wait to hug him before dinner. I couldn’t wait to talk about our days, our camping memories, and to plan our next adventure together. I am in a state of utter bliss today. I feel so lucky, loved, and blessed to be able to do what I want to do with my life, and discover the world with someone I love so much.

I was catching up on blogs that I follow, and have missed a whole lot in the blogging world over the last week. This place has such a special place in my heart, and I feel so connected to those I follow. We may not know one another in person, but I get to see into the lives of so many people from all over the globe. I’ve followed bloggers through first babies, marriages, and crazy happy online dating stories.

After showering away smoky campfire memories, I opened my Google Reader. The weekend bliss changed. My heart dropped, the back of my throat ached, and tears fell when I read that one of my favorite bloggers lost her husband recently. My heart goes out to her and her family. She makes incredible food and tells beautiful stories in each post. I’ve always admired her, and today I honor her strength.

I’m going to keep this simple. This is a very personal place for me. I wanted to post my camping meals tonight, but I think I’m going to hold off. I wanted a simple night with my friends, and P. I wanted to eat fresh tomatoes and mozzarella on toasted bread. I wanted to love my friends, and P. I wanted to make sure they know I love them. I didn’t want to spend too much time in the kitchen. I  wanted simplicity. You never know if you have tomorrow. Take some time to savor every moment you have with those you love.

This simple blissful dinner and post is in honor of Jennie, her family, and late husband Mike. I hope she knows people who don’t even know her truly love her, and have connected with her  through her writing, hope, and  strength.

Summer Caprese on grilled bread


  • 2 large slices of baquette, coated in olive oil, grilled until slightly charred with grill marks
  • 8 slices of your favorite variety of tomato
  • 6 slices fresh mozzarella
  • 12 fresh basil sprigs, chopped
  • sea salt, pepper
  • Good quality balsamic vinegar, and good quality Extra Virgen Olive oil
  • Grill bread
  • Slice cheese and tomatoes
  • Stack tomatoes, cheese, and mozzarella (bake in oven for a few minutes if desired, or if cheese isn’t melting from grilled bread)
  • Top with chopped basil
  • Drizzle with balsamic, and oil
  • Sprinkle with salt and pepper
  • Enjoy with loved ones, a bottle of wine, and happy hearts!!
I also made padron peppers, a steak for P, and a simple arugula salad with raspberries.

xoxo with all of my heart



3 Comments to “Bliss, thoughts on love, a simple dinner, and a tribute to Jennie and her loss.”

  1. I’m all about simple dinner these days, and taking advantage of the bounty Summer has to offer. I’m sorry about your friend, Sarah. I hear that…

  2. Hey Carmen!!

    I totally agree with simple Summer meals. The veggies are the super stars of the season, and totally make my dishes right now. I barely have to do anything to make them taste so great. I grilled nectarines, stuffed them with fresh goat cheese, and drizzled them in a habanero syrup. Delicious!!

  3. I’m glad you guys had such a great weekend! Sorry to hear about Jennie’s loss. Its terrible to hear about, but it makes people realize how precious their time with loved ones is.

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