gouda + bacon mac & cheese.

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on April 6, 2014


This morning D had his heart set on making chicken & waffles for a crowd and so I was tasked with making mac & cheese to accompany it. Naturally, I asked Reagan for a recipe since I knew she’d been making it pretty frequently and experimenting – nay, perfecting – her craft.

Here’s what I ended up making – x 2. Shall I re-emphasize “crowd”?


2 cups dry elbow macaroni
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups shredded smoked Gouda cheese
1 can (12 oz.) evaporated milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Cayenne pepper, because I use it on most everything

1. Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease casserole dish.

2. Boil and drain macaroni according to directions.

3. In sauce pan, add the cheddar cheese and gouda cheese, evaporated milk, salt and pepper. Stir until combined.

4. Meanwhile, cook bacon. Crumble and add to sauce pan once combined.

5. Pour into dish with macaroni. Add cheese and cayenne pepper to top. Cover tightly with foil.

6. Bake for 20 mins. Uncover and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until lightly brown.


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on the weekends we will stay outdoors.

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on April 6, 2014

We were blessed with gorgeous weather here in South Carolina for most of the weekend. I started it out with lunch outside at Drip with my friend Lauren.


That evening, Tuck, D, and I went to Real Mexico for supper + cold beer + a picnic table outside.


D got something monstrous – and involving cactus – to eat and loved it.


Saturday morning, Mary Beth, Katie, Amanda, and I gathered at my pool for a day in the sun.


That evening we picked up crab legs from Clifton’s and had the boys toss them on the grill by the pool.


It was all delicious and I’m fried … in more ways than one.

bachelorette party in folly.

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on April 4, 2014

This past Friday after a long day at work I headed to Folly Beach to celebrate my old roommate Emily’s bachelorette party.

We kicked the night off with dinner at Taco Boy.


I, of course, had to prove for a minute that I was queen before we headed out to the dance floor. I know, I know, I dressed really snazzy for a bachelorette party. Really I just dressed for the drive down and stayed that way.


Here I am proving the difference between hippie … and hipster.


Saturday, for lunch, I took the girls to the Bohemian Bull right down the street. I discovered the joint in January and was excited to go back for a meal! And a local brew, of course.


For lunch I ordered the Folly Cheese Steak.

Folly Cheese Steak

Tender Ribeye sliced thin, topped with pepper jack pimento cheese, grilled peppers and onions


We headed to Prohibition on upper King downtown for supper on Saturday night and enjoyed delicious – and fancy! – drinks and lots of eats. I sipped on the dartery and the strawberry smash. Both equally delicious.


For our appetizers we shared mushroom focaccia, baked oysters, and duck quesadilla. For supper I ordered the carolina roll – so much!


Sunday we stopped for lunch at Lost Dog before I headed back home and back to work! I enjoyed a mimosa and a burrito and a lot of fun with the girls.


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on st. patrick’s day, we dance.

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on April 4, 2014

Last year we started a tradition of not going to 5 Points for St. Patrick’s Day and it was a blast. We decided to do the same thing this year except first, we headed to 5 Points … at 9 am. A big group of us volunteered at a beer tent from 9-12 where our tips went to Camp Kemo.


After volunteering, we headed to the Vista for lunch at Ale House followed by dancing at The Woody. Check out this handsome fellow. So normal.


stuffed chicken.

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on April 2, 2014

It’s been a while since I’ve been in the kitchen so I made it my goal to cook tonight post logging a few miles in on the pavement.

Bacon and feta stuffed chicken breasts were on the menu. The recipe called for 6 chicken breasts so I modified it for 2 since it was just us.


Crumbled Feta Cheese – I just bought the herb kind I saw there because I love it.
1 package TJ’s Uncured Bacon, cooked and crumbled – I used 4 slices of bacon.
2 TJ’s Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, pounded flat
1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil – I just used the bacon grease instead since it was there.
Dried Oregano
Dried Basil – I didn’t have any since D keeps going to buy it and accidentally picking up a [4th] thing of oregano. I just tossed in some pepper instead. Lots of pepper. I gave it a kick.
1 can (14.5 oz) TJ’s Diced Tomatoes & Juice From Can – Used about 2/3 of this.


1. Combine feta and bacon in a mixing bowl.
2. Place the cheese/bacon mixture on the center of each chicken breast. Fold breast over to enclose mixture; fasten with a toothpick.
3. Heat a large sauté pan (with bacon grease or oil) to medium and add stuffed breasts; turn breasts while cooking to brown on all sides.
4. Add tomatoes and seasoning to pan. Lower heat to a simmer; cook about 15 – 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

Thumbs up from the man of the house so I think I might swing this recipe again!


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showers & babies oh my!

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on March 25, 2014

The only person I’ve lived with for more than 4 years that isn’t a member of my immediate family (although it often feels like she is) is my old roommate (and dear friend!) Emily. In celebration of her upcoming wedding in April, Mom and I threw her a shower!


It was complete with champaigne (and orange juice, too).


And the beautiful bride!


We had a great time showering the bride and celebrating all throughout the morning and in to the evening, too (following the engagement party).


{Emily, Emily, me, Katie}

The weekend was made extra special by me getting to meet my dear (and lifetime!) friend Caroline’s precious new baby, Warren. He is so perfect!


I love celebrating my friends and all the great joys in their lives!

acrylics, lately.

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on March 25, 2014

I haven’t painted as much or as often as I’d like to lately but with St. Patrick’s Day and showers galore and work, time just hasn’t allowed for much else. Here are a couple of things I’ve been able to finish.


You can bid at this in the silent auction at Kemopalooza at Edventure Children’s Museum on April 11th. This event raises funds and awareness for CAMP KEMO Programs of Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital.


I painted this for my dear friend Charles to give to his sister Elizabeth, a lover of octopi.

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katie’s baby shower.

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on March 24, 2014

My sister-in-law is due one month from today so recently we were able to shower her! Mom, my grandmothers, and myself all headed to Johnston for a baby shower for Katie. The week before I found myself on the floor at D’s like this:


Fortunately I was able to get my act together to finish my soon to be nephew’s painting in order to gift it to Katie!


It’s always an adventure when all of us get together.



{Grandmother, me, Katie, Nana, Mom}


Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on March 24, 2014

In February, D and I headed to Atlanta for my dear friend Sarah‘s nuptials. We got up bright and early Saturday morning and hit the road. I’d promised good barbeque for lunch to my date and I did not disappoint. We stopped at Fox Brothers as soon as we got into town. I had, predictably, only ever ordered grilled pimento cheese before there but this time I finally got my act together and ordered the pulled pork. And for D, lots of meats were in order.


En route to Roswell we stopped by [my favorite] Virginia Highlands so that I could stop in Dakota J’s for some new jewels. (I love that place!) Next up we arrived in Roswell to get dressed before heading over to the Founder’s Hall for the wedding!

I knew less than a handful of people and my bride was so popular that evening (her wedding – go figure!) but we had such a fun time. Each table had to sing a song lyric about love before we were able to get in line for our food. Here’s my group belting out:


We even followed it up with a kiss for the bride and groom!


It was such a fun evening. And – bonus – there were mini grilled cheeses!


Plus I had a pretty sweet date!


On the way home we swung through Athens and ate lunch at Clocked! I had the most amazing burger.

Bacon! Jam Burger

House blackberry bacon jam, lettuce, and clocked garlic-dijon sauce on 100% all natural, humanely raised beef

It was so delicious I slept the whole way home. And then we were back to our regularly scheduled power tool Sundays.


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happy heart.

Posted in Uncategorized by kristinblakely on February 28, 2014

For Valentine’s Day this year I had a quiet night at home filled with sunflowers.


And grilled cheese, too.


D whipped up 3 different kinds of grilled cheese.

1. Roast beef, bbq sauce, & gouda.
2. Avocado, bacon, & manchego.
3. Caramelized onions, garlic, sundried tomatoes, and goat cheese.

He also fixed homemade creamy tomato and roasted red pepper gouda soup. I think I’ll keep him around for a while.

Saturday we headed up to Charlotte for a day trip. We stopped at Kickstand for delicious burgers and beer before heading to Ikea. Afterward we visited NoDa Brewing Company.


Then we walked across the parking lot to Birdsong Brewing, which quickly became our favorite.


On the way out of town we stopped by Sleepy Poet – my favorite! It was such a perfect day wandering around and exploring a city I seldom visit.


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