Food

A Fun Summer Dessert (and a Fourth of July Recap)

The fact that the Fourth of July fell on a Wednesday this year meant the day stayed simple without feeling obligated to cram travel plans into a three-day weekend. We stayed home, walked down to our small town’s parade, and hosted my parents for a cookout on the deck. We were asleep before the fireworks and that was OK.

July 4 2018 (1)

July 4 2018 (2)

July 4 2018 (4)

July 4 2018 (3)

I made this super tasty no-bake dessert to celebrate the birthdays of both America and my mother. It’s a variation of a recipe I found in an old family cookbook, the kind where church potluck favorites reign supreme. I used strawberries and blueberries for a patriotic look, but you could play around with all kinds of fruit combinations. Keep enjoying summer, everyone!

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Recipe:

  • 3 sleeves of graham crackers (whole)
  • 8 ounces of cream cheese, softened
  • 2 3.4-ounce packages of instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 2 1/2 cups of cold milk
  • 1 carton of fresh strawberries, sliced
  • 1 carton of fresh blueberries
  • 12 ounces Cool Whip (or homemade whipped cream)
  • 1/2 cup of white chocolate chips

 

  • With an electric mixer, cream together the instant pudding mixes and the cream cheese.
  • Gradually add the cold milk.
  • Fold in the Cool Whip, reserving enough Cool Whip to coat the bottom of a 9×13-inch pan.
  • Spread a small amount of Cool Whip in the bottom of the pan.
  • Place one layer of whole graham crackers in the pan, breaking them apart if needed.
  • Place a layer of pudding mixture over the graham crackers and sprinkle (or carefully place if that’s your thing) the fruit over the pudding layer.
  • Do another layer of graham crackers, followed by pudding, followed by berries.
  • You’ll do three layers total, ending with the pudding/fresh berries on top.
  • Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave and spoon over the top layer. (I spooned it into a plastic bag and cut off the corner to create a little piping bag.)
  • Chill at least four hours (overnight is even better.)
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In My House

Happy Fourth of July Weekend

The Fourth of July has always been one of my favorite holidays. I love the togetherness with family and friends without the pressure of buying gifts, complicated meal preparation, and travel plans ruined by blizzards.

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I will admit fireworks paired with dry weather make me a bit nervous. I grew up on a ranch where grass fires and spooked cattle could be the result of firework play. I love that so many small communities put on public firework displays often with the local fire department helping. Fun and safe? Sign me up. Now if I can keep my pyro husband away from the fireworks stands…

This year I am cherishing the holiday even more because it marks my last few days before returning to work after maternity leave. I plan to soak up every single moment with my girls (in their matching outfits because I can) and husband. Happy Fourth of July!