This and That


1. So I finally convinced Maria that we NEED a minivan. We test drove the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna. We like both vans and are having a hard time making a decision. Any suggestions?

2. It’s been a hot week and nothing tastes better than a toffee bar.

3. I’ve taken Caleb out on a few bike rides with the Chariot. He loves riding. We’ve even got the mommy out on a few rides.


1. Have you seen the summer issue of Foodie Crush magazine? It’s filled with tasty recipes, gorgeous photography, and fun stories. Make sure you check it out! I definitely have a huge crush on this issue! Congrats Heidi!

2. I love a good Caprese Salad, especially in the summer when tomatoes are at their prime. I can’t wait to make this Hasselback Caprese Salads! TOO cute!

3. The Red Faced Runners launched a website this week. Check it out and join the fun. You don’t have to have a blog to participate! The goal is to run a 5K on the weekend of September 8th and 9th. The peas are signed up!

4. Remember the Cherry Almond Cake I made without a cherry pitter? Well, I guess I don’t need one after all. Watch this video on how to pit cherries without a cherry pitter. No more red fingers! Such a great tip!

5. A beautiful box of Harry and David peaches showed up on our door step this week. Hello summer sweetness!

6. We are headed to Park City today for the EVO Conference. We are lucky we only live 20 minutes away! If you are going, make sure you find us and say hello!

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I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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  1. Love, love, love our Sienna. Have traveled across the country many times – Have transported 3 children and 4 adults in comfort – get decent gas mileage – ride in comfort. We have had no problems with the Sienna and I don’t believe they have had any safety issues.

  2. Check out the Nissan Quest minivan, too. We’ve had two different ones for at least 10 years and love the Quest. It’s also just a little more sporty/less boxy van looking.

  3. We’re in the same boat. We’ve had a Sienna for 9 years now and LOVE it! We have been looking at the new models of both the Odessy & Sienna. We love the Honda look and the Toyota’s have taken some storage away and added plastic which we don’t like. The engines though…the Toyota is supposed to be superior. Hmmm, I’ll be interested in hearing what you come home with!

  4. Hi Josh and Maria:

    I would go with the Toyota.

    I have been driving a Toyota (Camry) for twenty years (I’m on my second.)

    I rust proof for the winter, keep regular check ups and haven’t had a spot of trouble with them.

    Love how they drive and perform. Great for safety.

    They get 100% from me.


  5. I read in a car review article that the Sienna was a pretty bad polluter being made and the Odyssey was more “green” being made.

  6. We have the oddesey and love it. I never thought I’d love a car so much, but the minivan definitely makes life easier.

  7. Honda – no brainer. I’ve owned Honda’s for 23 consecutive years and if you check out all of the comparisons you’ll find that Honda comes out ahead!

  8. Try the Volkswagan Routan. I really had my heart set on an Odyssey, and the Routan beat it for me. Been driving it for a few years and LOVE it.

  9. We have always been a Toyota family, but we ended up getting an Odyssey about 5 yrs ago. At the time we were going to school out in Pittsburgh and the Odyssey was about $15K less for the options we wanted compared to the Sienna. We have had some minor problems … mostly things that are just irritating and that take time out of your schedule to have them fixed. And then we have both side doors power and something on those had to get replaced that was a few hundred $$’s.

    After owning a Honda for 5+yrs and numerous Toyota vehicles, I definitely like Toyota better BUT if I’m shopping around again and there’s a big price difference again, I may go for the Honda again knowing that the kids are hard on it & once my kids are old enough, I’ll be happy to say adios! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Either way, you can’t go wrong!

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