Coffee Break

stack of drop sugar cookies with sprinkles

Let’s catch up. (Drop Sugar Cookies above!)

Update on Jude

Thank you so much for all your kind words and well wishes last month. All of your positive vibes definitely helped lift our spirits! In August, we learned that our older dog, Jude, has cancer. Jude had a cancerous tumor removed and has been recovering well since surgery. In fact, ever since his stitches healed, Jude’s been smiling, wagging his tail, chewing his bone, playing with Franklin, and doing his usual bark-at-the-mailman routine. We are ELATED that he’s acting like his old self again!

Vet says Jude’s blood work is healthy and physical shape is awesome. He’s doing well in his post surgery treatment, too! We understand the cancer will likely return, but we know Jude has more love and life left to gift this world. ♥

Thank you again!

jude dog smiling

New Sally’s Baking Challenge Email List

I’m so excited to announce that I started an exclusive email list for readers interested in my monthly baking challenges. If you’re on my Sally’s Baking Challenge email list, you’ll receive a few Sally’s Baking Challenge emails per month including the recipe announcement, reminder/details about the recipe, a preview of the following month’s challenge before anyone else, and participant’s recipe photos to keep you inspired.

If you’ve ever wondered how to join Sally’s Baking Challenge or can’t find the challenge recipe, this is it! It’s all sent directly to your inbox.

Sign up for Sally's Baking Challenge Emails

*If you’re already on my email list, you’ll need to sign up to receive these separate emails.

5 Year Anniversary

I can’t believe this day was 5 years ago! It was our 5 year wedding anniversary last weekend. We actually call it the Ultimate Celebration Week because it was my sister’s birthday, our anniversary, Sally’s Cookie Addiction‘s 2nd birthday, and Noelle’s 2nd birthday. WOW!

Wedding bride and groom photo on

To celebrate, we went out to a beautiful dinner. And now we’re headed to Stowe, Vermont for a quiet weekend getaway together. ♥

Noelle Turns 2

And the biggest celebration of all! Our sweet Noelle turned 2 earlier this week. We can hardly believe our eyes and ears as our nearly 36 inch tall (!!!) toddler talks in nearly full sentences. I feel like her speech grew 1000% just in the past month!

We celebrated with a fun morning apple picking, then had an Elmo themed birthday party. We kept her party fun and simple with homemade Elmo cake, easy Sesame Street party decor (the set I bought was so cute and easy), and a special Elmo shirt for the birthday girl.

child with apple

noelle eating Elmo cake nose

Franklin… so hopeful. Noelle… just eating the nose.

She was SO EXCITED about her Elmo shirt!! It shrank a bit in the wash, so I’m glad I bought the 3T. (Noelle is normally between 2T and 3T.) The little ruffle details are everything!

child's 2nd birthday Elmo shirt

Dinners Lately

We were in a dinner rut for awhile. You know the kind. But we’re finally back in a groove and here’s what we’ve been making lately:

  1. Pizza on the grill with homemade pizza crust. I always follow these instructions (steps 2 and 3) for grilling.
  2. Healthy Sheet Pan Sausage & Veggies – We loved this! Toddler approved! I used 1 sweet potato instead of regular potatoes and extra green beans instead of broccoli.
  3. Slow Cooker Chicken Chili – As soon as the weather dips below 70 degrees (even if it was for 1 day!!), I make a batch of this chili.
  4. Chicken Meatballs with Pesto Pasta – I actually used up 2 lingering zucchinis and made this with zucchini noodles. We all loved it and I was happy Noelle (messily!) ate the pesto zucchini noodles. Victory!

pizza on the grill

I froze half of the chili and I actually updated my old Freezer Meals post! I recently began using these glass freezer containersย and theyโ€™re fantastic for larger batch items.

chicken chili in glass container for freezer meal

Sugar Cookies Makeover

Sugar cookies got a little makeover. Same recipe, new photos, clearer instructions, and a new video tutorial. Master them for the holiday season!

decorated sugar cookies on a baking sheet

I also updated the photos for Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins. These are a total treat this time of year. I live for those brown sugar crumbles on top and know you’ll flip for the cheesecake filling inside too.

stack of pumpkin cheesecake muffins

September Baking Challenge

September Baking Challenge recipe:ย Homemade Cheese Bread

September’s baking challenge recipe combines bread and cheese. Need I say more? What you’ll love most is that it’s a completely approachable recipe, even if you’re a bread beginner. If there’s ever been a time to conquer your fears of yeast, this is it. Here’s my Baking with Yeast guide to help, too.

Absolutely salivating over your cheese breads this month.

collage of cheese bread images

collage of cheese bread images

collage of cheese bread images

collage of cheese bread images

Thanks for reading and have a delicious weekend. Happy Fall!


  1. My husband and I will be in Stowe this weekend celebrating our 2nd wedding anniversary! Have so much fun ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. How fun! Enjoy your anniversary weekend!!

  2. I am so happy to hear Jude is doing so much better! Wishing many more healthy and happy years for him.

    1. Thank you so much, Sandy!

  3. Hi Sally , Kevin,Noelle, Jude and Franklin, So very glad for Jude! Thank you for keeping us informed about his health and how he is doing! Your family is our family too LOVE LOVE LOVE your website – recipes, chit-chats, and all! One request Sally, I am so glad your recipes are given in weights as well as volume as I do baking by weight but is it possible to also give the (approximate) weight of the cookie balls either in grams or ounces and not just in volume ( 1 1/2 TBL. or 2 TBL. ?) Using a disher (scoop) is difficult if you have arthritic hands. Please keep giving us your excellent recipes especially cookies, cakes, squares etc! P.S. When are you going to publish a Cookie Palooza Recipe Book??

    1. Love reading this, thank you so much Susie!! I do have a cookbook all about cookies- Sally’s Cookie Addiction ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. Hi Sally, I have Cookie Addiction but you have so many more great recipes that warrant another FANTASTIC cookie book. Best regards to you all, Susie

  4. Beautiful post baked with LOVE! Thank you for sharing!

    1. So sweet, thank you Pamela!

  5. Sally,
    You were such a beautiful bride….and your sweet daughter is lovely! Happy Everything for you! BTW-your chocolate cream cheese bundt cake is in my fridge for tomorrow. I had to use my new bundt cake pan!

    1. What a delicious way to break in your new bundt pan! YUM!

  6. Love your maple cookies! My 94year old mothers new favorite for sure. We all in my big family loved them too. try them and thank you Sally!

    1. I’m so happy your family loves those cookies! Perfect for fall ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Happy anniversary! I’ve been following for a long time and remember when you got engaged.. time flies!

    1. Time sure is racing! Thanks for your loyal readership, Leela ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Thanks for the update. I’m so glad that you have so much to celebrate, including Jude’s recovery from surgery. We love our fur babies โ™ฅ. Happy anniversary!

    1. So much to celebrate! Thanks for your kind words, Deborah ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. My husband and I celebrated our honeymoon in Vermont thirty years ago! Time flies and it seems like you are taking the time to enjoy every minute. Mazel Tov (congratulations) to you and your family.

    1. It’s such a beautiful place!! Thanks for your kind words, Kathryn ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Oh I’m so glad that Jude is doing so well!! I know that I don’t actually know him but from following you all these years I FEEL like I do! He’s the happiest fella I know and always brings a smile to me when I see a photo of him. Happy Anniversary to you and Kevin! And of course Happy Birthday to sweet Noelle!

    1. So sweet, thank you for your kind words Shannon!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. I so happy to hear that Jude is doing so well. We lost our Skye last month. He was 13 and had lived a very long and happy life for a very large dog. It is so hard when your petโ€™s are not doing so well. Sending prayers to you guys for his continued good health.

    1. I’m so sorry for your loss- pets are truly members of our families. Thinking of you and sending your family prayers.

  12. Your dog is very cute my parent anniversary was on 9-18-19. This recipes look extremely good.

    1. Thanks Zoe!

  13. I love reading your coffee break posts and what a beautiful wedding dress, Sally! Love it

    1. Thank you so much, Mary!

  14. So many fun times ahead with Noelle, she’s a doll! I bet the leaves are beautiful in Stowe right now, enjoy!

    1. The leaves are truly stunning!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. I love Stowe!
    Did you do any hiking? Visit the Farmers Market? Thereโ€™s also a great kitchen store! Hope you enjoyed the weekend:)

  16. I’m so glad Jude is alright! He’s is so adorable! Seeing him smile just makes my day! My furry friend Coconut just passed away last month from a mysterious blob of air that somehow formed in her stomach. It pressured her lungs and heart and it was hard for her to breathe… She lived three years. Although it might be short, but for a hamster, it’s a very long life! I hope Jude has a long and happy life as well. I’m sure he is living his best with your care. Sending love from the other side of the world โค๏ธ

  17. I’m behind on my emails…..what a jam packed newsletter today! Congratulations on all counts and celebrations. I am so happy about Jude. I love all your pictures and your wedding picture is beautiful and love that Jude is there too. Best regards to all and love the recipes….I use your sight all the time. Thank you!

  18. Abbey McDermott says:

    So happy to hear Jude is doing better. Dogs are truly members of the family. Congratulations on the milestones. Stowe is the most quaint town – we just love it there!

    1. Thank you so much, Abbey!

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Welcome to my Kitchen!

Iโ€™m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally