June 30, 2016


After 17 years of marriage, we’ve learned that we don’t always need fancy dinners or extravagant gifts to celebrate. So over the weekend, as Chris and I celebrated our anniversary, we marked the occasion with some of our traditions, homemade cards and flowers. When Chris brought home several bouquets, I did what I typically do. I stuck them in as many vases and jars as I could in an effort to spread them throughout the house. Walking into a room with fresh flowers is one of my absolute favorite things.






Flowers are just one of those gifts that don’t lose their appeal. (Chocolate and jewelry are also timeless treasures, right?) I’m hoping that our next 17 will be filled with some more of the same.




I remember back to our early years of marriage, finding and then holding onto some recipes that became traditions. When we entertained or brought something to a meal, I seemed to return to some of the same recipes or dishes. Entrées often involved some type of canned crescent roll. Apple pie and lemon bars topped the go-to list when it came to desserts. I also remember coming across a potato salad recipe with some non-traditional ingredients. It became a summertime staple.




It’s still a classic and a perfect potluck pairing or cookout accompaniment.

Take it along to your July 4th celebration. It may become one of your new traditions.




Ranch Potato Salad

*I’m not including specific amounts for the ingredients. Make a small batch for a few or go ahead and use five pounds of potatoes if you’re preparing for a crew. Adjust bacon and ranch to suit the amount of potatoes used.

Red Potatoes (peeled and diced into bite-sized pieces)

            *I always leave about half the skin on the potatoes for color and flavor.

Bacon, cooked and chopped

Ranch Dressing (Make your own or use bottled ranch as a timesaver.)

Fresh Parsley, chopped

Salt and Pepper


Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and add diced potatoes. Cook until fork tender.

Drain potatoes and cool.

Stir in ranch dressing until potatoes are covered. Mix in bacon and pepper generously.

Garnish with parsley.



**To save yourself some flipping and grease-splattering, try cooking the bacon in the oven. Bake at 400 for about 15 minutes. If you’re short on time, use pre-cooked bacon.

**Green onions add another level of flavor to the potato salad. I used to include them rather than the parsley. The boys aren’t crazy about onions so I swapped them out for the milder taste of parsley.




Whether you’re celebrating marriage, freedom, or everyday life, remember some of the best traditions are simple when made with love.


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