To tell you a little about myself, I am a Jersey Girl from the beach.  I married my other half in October 2009, and "Mr. Vittles" has been the primary beneficiary of my love of cooking and baking - I'm happy to report that I haven't made anything inedible, yet!!!  If he's not sick of the question "How is it?" by now, then I guess we have many more marvelous years ahead of us.

 Mr. Vittles and me on our wedding day

Both of my parents love to cook, so it was pretty much inevitable that I ended up doing the same.  However, I must sadly admit that the majority of my young life was spent eating chicken nuggets and Kraft mac 'n' cheese.  Yes, I'm not proud that I once held the title of Pickiest Eater Ever Born.  Ah, my poor parents :(  But while I'm still no gourmet (and definitely never will be) I like to think I've come a long way from hot dogs with no ketchup.  Not only do I like a lot more foods than I used to, I have expanded my horizons from merely eating to actively creating!  I am always on the hunt for fun new recipes, and I like to adapt them to my taste and those of my husband.

But let's just get a few things straight - the Vittles' household is one of simple tastes.  We're all about what my mother would call "comfort food."  If a dish has pepper jack cheese and/or bacon, Mr. Vittles will be in hog heaven.  We also both love Mexican and, in tribute to my family heritage, I always love a good Italian dish.  BUT... while I know the saying is "Never say never," I can almost guarantee that you will never find a seafood recipe on this blog.  Sorry, I know - and yes, I did grow up at the beach... and yes, I did give seafood many opportunities to change my mind.  And... I still hate it.  So look elsewhere for seafood recipes, my friends!  Shrimp and lobster are not invited to this party.

Now that we've covered what you will NOT be seeing ... I will tell you that my family is everything to me, so you will probably see me post a lot about them, and also the amazing friends I'm so lucky to have.  

Momma Vittles is my number one inspiration for her Martha-like qualities and amazing culinary abilities.  She has so many wonderful recipes that she's collected and created over the years.  (I definitely owe my love for creativity to her as well.)  Plus she's a saint for putting up with my horrible food demands growing up!  Unfortunately, she passed away shortly after our wedding, and not a day goes by that I don't miss her dearly.  But I think she would be proud of me for starting a blog to share my culinary successes, trials, and tribulations.

Momma Vittles and my adorable stepdad

Pappy Vittles has some killer recipes of his own, but most importantly he is my kitchen organization guru.  He and my stepmom are back and forth between their two homes - both of which are wonderful, but neither of which has a large or ideal kitchen! Nonetheless, he always has the appropriate tools and ingredients, and despite his limited space, he manages to find a place for everything. The most impressive feat to me, however, is that his kitchen is near spotless even after cooking a huge meal.  He washes as many dishes as he can along the way, so there is minimal cleanup to do after dinner.  Just like I always do... er ... ok, so sometimes my kitchen looks like a train hit a flour factory.  But overall I really try to adopt this method! 

Pappy Vittles and my fabulous stepmom

Pammy Vittles, my mother-in-law, is an unbelievable baker.  The amount of sugar she uses in certain recipes might keep your kids up for 26 hours ... but her desserts taste delicious!  She is also a great cook and I've enjoyed many a scrumptious family meal at her house.  Mr. Vittles and I both have large extended families, and I will tell you now that the in-laws do not mess around when it comes to a feast.  PS - a recipe I could not live without is Pammy Vittles' chocolate cake... :)

Pammy Vittles and my awesome father-in-law

Lastly, Grammy Vittles, Yaya Vittles, and Nana Vittles (the Grandmas) deserve recognition too.  Mr. Vittles' absolute favorite birthday cake comes from the vault of Nana Vittles.  And many of my own favorite family recipes have been passed down from these amazing women.  Just hopefully not from Yaya Vittles' own hand, as she has a tendency to go too fast and forget ingredients or important information.  You know, like oven temperatures, baking times, and ingredient amounts... yikes!  But that's just one of the many reasons why we love her :)

 Me and Grammy Vittles

Yaya Vittles and me

 Nana Vittles

Other random facts include:; I am a total klutz (Mr. Vittles' term, not mine) in the kitchen - constantly dropping and spilling things and hurting myself, really I'm a trainwreck. I heart garlic more than a normal person should and tend to use way more than a recipe calls for.  I'm a sucker for pretty much anything with coconut, Nutella, and a combination of chocolate & peanut butter.  I get grossed out by whole animals (ie chickens, turkeys) and even just parts with bones.  No chicken wings for me, people.  Basically, the more closely it resembles the animal in its original form, the more freaked out I get.  Oh, and I am terrified of moths (nothing to do with cooking, just a weird fact that we may as well get out of the way). 

So there you have it.  Now that you know about the people I love and a few of my dirty little secrets, we're officially friends :)  Thanks for checking me out!


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