Letter to My Daughter – Happy 11th Birthday!

by Cate on February 14, 2019


I went to go look up my last “Letter to My Daughter,” and just noticed I’m missing two years. UGH.

As for this year, I’m a few days late, but I wanted to make sure to get the words and photos here. I hope that one day when she’s older, she’ll look back on these letters with fondness and know how much I love her.

And so this is 11.

Two weeks ago, she sent me a link of a simple pearl necklace and asked me to buy six of them. She wanted to give them to five of her closest friends, so they would know how important they were to her. Giving FRIENDS a gift right before HER birthday just so completely sums up the type of person she is.

A kid with the hugest heart I know.

She continues to be the pickiest eater around, but her brother was at her age as well, so I’m clinging to the hope that she will eventually grow out of it. In the meantime, she basically eats buttered noodles, chicken fingers, chocolate croissants, Nutella toast, Nutella waffles, ham and cheese sandwiches from Panera (which is what she requested for dinner on her birthday), and tacos with just meat and cheese.

And seriously, that’s, like, it. [click to continue…]

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Tater tots scream old school comfort food to me, and there’s nothing like a Cheeseburger Tater Tot Casserole to celebrate National Tater Tot Day!

Cheeseburger Tater Tot Casserole

There is a restaurant in town that has an entire section of their menu devoted to Tater Tots. It’s like a little secret peek back into the 70s, and I love everything about it. I don’t go that often, maybe a few times a year, but every time I do, I get a different tater tot selection … slowly working my way through the many different varieties.

I mean, TATER TOTS! What’s not to love? A crispy exterior giving way to a softer potato center, and a reminder of everything that was good about your childhood.

And oddly enough, my kids really don’t like them.

If it wasn’t for the 39 hours of combined labor to deliver both of them, I’d wonder how we could possibly be related.

So … today happens to be National Tater Tot Day! Don’t you just love random, nonsensical holidays that you instantly feel the need to celebrate?


And so here we are … I made a Cheeseburger Tater Tot Casserole for dinner tonight to celebrate Nick’s half birthday (16 AND A HALF!), and perhaps I got the best present of all because my kiddos actually ate a dinner I made, which doesn’t happen a lot lately!

The recipe couldn’t be simpler to make, and is delicious tummy-warming food. Is it the healthiest thing in the world? Nope, not a chance. Especially when it was chased by an ice cream cake. But this is one of those once-in-a-blue-moon recipes that you just give yourself permission to enjoy.

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Visit: Empty Sky Memorial {Jersey City, New Jersey}

January 8, 2019

The Empty Sky Memorial is the official New Jersey 9/11 memorial located at Liberty State Park in Jersey City. Let’s take a look. I had seen pictures of Empty Sky Memorial on Instagram over the past few years and made a mental note that I wanted to stop by and visit it with my kids. […]

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Christmas Day {2018}

January 2, 2019

For Christmas Day, we always celebrate at my parents’ house. Our tradition is we convene there in the morning, have Dunkin’ Donuts (I have NO idea how that tradition started, but we’ve been doing it for a good ten years), open presents, and then have our “big meal.” Happy organized chaos in the best possible […]

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‘Twas the Night Before the Night Before Christmas {2018}

December 25, 2018

My kids are with their Dad on Christmas Eve, so since it used to be my holiday to host my family, I switched a few years ago and host Christmas Eve Eve instead. Truth be told, I don’t celebrate Christmas Eve at all anymore. It’s just not the same without my kids here. I sometimes […]

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