Hi! I’m Blaire Wilson, Pleasant View Farm’s resident bloggerRead more for all things happening at my family’s bed & breakfast, restaurant, and farm. Read this blog to keep up on all of the biggest news at Pleasant View Farm and get inspired by videos featuring some my favorite recipes and crafts. Read less

Welcome to Pleasant View Farm!

Nestled in the beautiful Hudson Valley is the most wonderful place on earth: Pleasant View Farm. The farm house and land have been in my family for generations. Now my grandpa runs a pet-friendly bed & breakfast and my mom is the chef at our farm-to-table restaurant. Farm-to-table means we grow many of the ingredients right here on our landRead more. What we can’t grow ourselves, we get from other farms in the area. Mom cooks with what's in season so that everything is super fresh and totally delicious.

The best thing about Pleasant View Farm is that there’s always something new and interesting happening! Visitors come from all over to stay at our B&B, my mom is always inventing and experimenting with new recipes for the restaurant, and with each season there are new things to discover in the farm’s fields.

Pleasant View Farm wasn’t always so bustling. When my great-grandparents bought the land, there was just the house and orchard. They turned the surrounding fields into a working farm. Later, my grandparents renovated the rooms on the second floor and opened the B&B. A few years ago, my mom added a professional kitchen and big dining space to the house and opened her own restaurant. Now people from all over the county and the country come to Pleasant View Farm. I love greeting everyone who comes to our serene spot in the heart of the Hudson Valley. Read less

Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Brownies

I have a love-filled recipe to share, just in time for the holidays—Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Brownies! The holidays are one of my favorite times of year because I get to make extra wonderful food for the people I care about.Read more

This recipe is special to me. My friend Eli brought these dairy free brownies to school so that I could have the same class snack as everyone else.

  • You will need:
  • •   Cooking spray
  • •   1 cup vegetable oil
  • •   1 cup maple syrup
  • •   ½ cup soy milk
  • •   1 tablespoon vanilla
  • •   2 cups flour
  • •   1 cup cocoa
  • •   1½ cups sugar
  • •   2 tablespoons baking powder
  • •   ½ teaspoon salt
  • •   1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips

Directions First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9x13 baking pan with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, maple syrup, soy milk, and vanilla. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, sugar, baking powder, and salt.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until combined, but taking care not to overmix. Fold in the chocolate chips and transfer the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick can be inserted in the center and comes out clean.

Remove the brownies from the oven, let cool slightly, and have an adult help you cut into even pieces. Enjoy!

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Tis the Season

Wow! From renovating the barn into an event space to hosting our first wedding to creating Awesome Sauce, it sure has been a big year for the Wilson family and Pleasant View Farm!Read more

I can’t wait to celebrate the past year and the holidays with my family—it’s really a special time where everyone comes together and focuses on what matters. I’ve been joking with my brother, Beckett, that my presence will be his present. He doesn’t thing that very funny. Luckily, I’ve had awesome idea sparks for his gift. I’ve been working on crafty presents for him and everyone in my family.

Making holiday gifts is one of my favorite things to do. It’s fun to personalize presents and make them completely one-of-a-kind. It’s the thought and the care put into a gift that counts, not the price-tag or the size.

From all of us at Pleasant View Farm—Happy Holidays!

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Autumn Apple Pancakes

I never need an excuse to make pancakes. When the apples in our orchard are ripe, apple pancakes are my favorite. They’re perfect on a crisp fall day—for breakfast or dinner!Read more

  • You will need:
  • •   4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted. For a dairy-free option, use the same amount of coconut oil
  • •   1 cup all-purpose flour
  • •   1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • •   1 teaspoon baking soda
  • •   ½ teaspoon salt
  • •   1 large egg
  • •   1¼ cups of buttermilk, or for a dairy-free option, combine 1 cup coconut milk and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice!
  • •   Vegetable-oil spray
  • •   2 cups peeled and chopped apples

Directions In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. In a separate large bowl, whisk the egg and then add the buttermilk and melted butter and combine. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk together until just mixed into a slightly lumpy batter.

Coat a skillet or griddle with vegetable-oil spray and put over medium heat. When the pan is hot, have an adult help you pour ¼ cup of batter onto the pan and add 6 to 10 pieces of chopped apple and lightly press them into the batter with the spatula tip. Once bubbles start to form in the pancake, it’s ready to flip! Cook one minute on the second side, or until golden brown. Repeat these steps until you’ve used all the remaining batter.

Serve warm and with your favorite toppings! Fresh fruit, cooked apples, syrup, and powdered sugar are all great options! Enjoy.

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Lend a Helping Hand

My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving! I love to cook, so making a big meal is super fun. But the best part about Thanksgiving is the way friends and family come together to celebrate each other and everything we’re thankful for.Read more

One of the things I’m most thankful for this year is our fresh, home-grown food. My class did a community service project that reminded me how lucky I am to have easy access to a garden’s worth of healthy veggies and fruits. Not every kid has that. My whole class lent a helping hand to make Awesome Sauce with tomatoes, peppers, onions, carrots, and zucchini from Pleasant View Farm. We made over 70 jars of sauce and gave them to our local food pantry! It felt great to provide a delicious meal to people in the community who need it most.

So, on Thanksgiving this year, share what you’re most thankful for and think of ways that you might make a difference in your community.

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Chocolate Dessert Bowls

I made these dessert bowls as a surprise for my dad’s birthday. They were a huge hit and I knew it was a recipe I had to share! One of my favorite things about this dessert is all the different types of fillings you can put in the bowls. I love filling them with freshly-picked blueberries from our patch, and Bennett loves heaping globs of ice cream in his bowl.Read more

  • You will need:
  • •   1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (Because of my food sensitivity, I use dairy-free chocolate chips for this recipe. You can find them in the health food section of many supermarkets.)

  • •   1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • •   Fruit, candy, or ice cream or dairy-free frozen dessert alternatives for filling
  • •   Latex-free balloons
  • •   Cooking spary

Directions First, prepare the balloons. Wash and dry the outside of the balloons and blow up each balloon to the size of an orange. Spray the bottom of each balloon with a small amount of cooking spray. This will make it easier to remove the balloon once the chocolate hardens. Set the balloons aside.

Next, line a baking sheet with wax paper. To melt the chocolate, combine the chocolate chips and oil in a microwave-safe bowl. Set the power to 50% and microwave for 30 seconds with the power set to 50% (so you don’t burn the chocolate!). Have an adult help you stir the chocolate. Microwave for 20 seconds and then stir again. Continue until the chocolate is melted, decreasing the cooking time at each interval.

Let the chocolate cool for a minute or two before dipping the balloons. If it’s too hot, the balloons will pop.

Using the spoon, place a dab of chocolate on the wax paper. Use the back of the spoon to spread the chocolate into a small circle. This will provide a base for the bowl. Make four circles, spacing them about 3 inches apart.

Dip the bottom of each balloon into the bowl of chocolate, twisting it to cover the sides of the balloon. Place each balloon onto a chocolate base on the wax paper.

Freeze for one hour so that the chocolate can harden. With an adult’s help, use kitchen shears to cut a small hole in the top of the balloon, slowly let the air escape, and carefully pull the balloon from the chocolate bowl.

Fill the bowls with your choice of dessert and enjoy!

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Awesome Sauce

The kitchen at Pleasant View Farm turned into much more than that recently—it was the spot for some major “good-deed” doing! My classmates and I made seventy-six jars of this yummy sauce for our community’s food pantry for our school’s community service challenge. This recipe has a lot of wonderfully fresh ingredients from the garden and is a great sauce to serve over spaghetti or as a dipping sauce.Read more

  • You will need:
  • •   ¼ cup olive oil
  • •   1 cup chopped onion
  • •   6 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • •   1 cup peeled and sliced carrots
  • •   1 cup sedded and diced red or green pepper
  • •   1 cup diced zucchini
  • •   10 cups chopped fresh tomato
  • •   2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
  • •   1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • •   1 teaspoon dried basil
  • •   Salt and black pepper to taste

Directions Start by heating the olive oil in a small stockpot over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, carrots, pepper, and zucchini and cook until the vegetables start to soften—about 6 to 8 minutes. Add your tomatoes and spices and increase the heat to medium-high to bring the mixture to a boil. Stir occasionally and let the sauce simmer for about 2 ½ hours.

Serve warm over spaghetti or put the sauce into jars and refrigerate to enjoy at a later time!

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Back-To-School Dairy-Free Pizza

Pizza day at school used to be one of my favorites, but once we discovered I had a dairy sensitivity, I knew I wouldn't be able to take part in that anymore. So, after experimenting with a lot of different types of dairy-free cheese and pizza recipes, this one was the winner!Read more

  • You will need:
  • For the butternut squash sauce, prepare:

  • •   3 cups of butternut squash, cubed
  • •   3 cloves of garlic, whole but with the skin removed
  • •   2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • •   1 tablespoon of maple syrup
  • •   And salt and pepper to taste
  • For the pizza you'll need to prepare:

  • •   1 ½ cups of chopped broccolini
  • •   ½ cup of chopped red onion
  • •   ½ cup cooked chickpeas that are rinsed and thoroughly dried
  • •   1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • •   6 ounces of store-bought pizza dough
  • •   ½ cup of vegan or dairy-free mozzarella cheese
  • •   And salt and pepper to taste

Directions Start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees. To make the butternut squash sauce, place the cubed butternut squash and garlic cloves onto a baking sheet, drizzle with half of the olive oil, and sprinkle some salt and papper. Toss the ingredients together to combine. Bake the squash until it's tender—about 15 to 20 minutes.

After the squash is cooked, combine it with the remaining olive oil and maple syrup in a blender. Purée this mixture until it is creamy and smooth. You might need to add a little more olive oil or water if it's too thick and make sure to add salt and pepper to season the sauce.

When the sauce is done, it's time to make the pizza! Start by increasing the oven temperature to 425 degrees. Roll out your pizza dough into an even circle and transfer to a parchment-lined round baking sheet.

Then, in a large skillet, sautée the broccolini, onion, oregano, and chickpeas in 1 teaspoon of oil for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring frequently.

Assemble your pizza by spreading about 1 cup of the sauce to the dough, or enough to coat the dough, leaving space around the edges. Add the sautéed veggies and chickpeas mixture as toppings and spread evenly. Finally, sprinkle a bit more oregano on the pizza and add your dairy-free mozzarella cheese.

Bake the pizza for 13-18 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. To ensure a nice, crispy crust, lay the pizza and parchment paper directly on the oven rack.

Remove the pizza from the oven after baking, and have an adult help you cut into even slices. Enjoy!

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You Have GOAT to be Kidding Me!

The big wedding might be over, but the excitement never stops at Pleasant View Farm! This month, if you visited you might have spotted my brother, Beckett, rehearsing tricks with another kid—a kid goat that is!Read more

Beckett and our farm's pet goat, Dash, put on quite a show at this year's Bluefield Harvest Festival. It was a silly idea, but the crowds loved it! Beckett taught Dash how to give a high-five and how to get up and dance on his hind legs. Beckett didn't teach Dash how to grab a hot dog from a boy in the crowd and eat it in one bite. That was all Dash's idea.

Even though Beckett can be pesky sometimes, his funny show and tricks made me think about how everyone at Pleasant View Farm brings their unique talents to the table. Mom's an expert chef, Grandpa makes sure the Bed and Breakfast runs smoothly, Dad's always on the lookout for new ways to bring people to Pleasant View, and Cat keeps our crops in tip top shape. And, if you ever need a dairy-free recipe tested or a party planned, you know you can always count on me!

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We did it! Pleasant View Farm hosted its first wedding!Read more

Cat and Gabe’s wedding was perfect. Everyone chipped in during the last few days to get the barn ready for the event. Grandpa even helped, which was a big surprise since he was dead set against the idea of turning the barn into a party space. The ceremony was outside, in the gazebo, which we decorated with wildflowers and lavender-colored tulle and paper fans that shimmered in the sun. The decorations were simple, but pretty and romantic. Most important of all, they were exactly what Cat wanted.

That isn’t to say there weren’t a few surprises. My brother, Beckett, forgot to close the coop, so chickens invaded the barn right before the guests arrived for the reception! I made the best of the situation by dressing two of the chickens like a junior bride and groom. Cat and Gabe posed for pictures with them, and Cat joked that it definitely gave the wedding the “farm-fancy” feel she was going for.

A reporter from Empire State Weddings magazine came to write a review of our space. I think all the special touches, like the outdoor ceremony, the cloth napkins tied with twine and a sprig of lavender, and the homemade crème brûlée dessert (including a non-dairy version), really impressed her. I can’t wait to see Pleasant View Farms featured in a magazine! Here’s to many more people celebrating weddings and special occasions in this beautiful place.

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Forest giant fingers (AKA Crispy Green Bean Fries)

This tasty snack is a favorite in the Wilson house! I just love picking our own veggies from the garden and turning them into something yummy. Now that I’ve nailed this recipe, I think I might try to come up with my own special dipping sauces for it too.Read more

  • You will need:
  • •   Olive oil spray
  • •   ¾ cup breadcrumbs
  • •   1 ½ tablespoons seasoning blend (such as Italian seasoning)
  • •   ¼ teaspoon salt
  • •   ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • •   2 eggs
  • •   1 pound fresh green beans

Directions First, have an adult help you preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Lightly spray a baking sheet with olive oil spray.

Next, prepare the breading by combining the breadcrumbs, seasoning blend, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Use a kitchen shears to trim off the ends of the green beans. Rinse beans and shake off excess water. In a separate, shallow bowl, break the eggs and beat with a fork.

Dip the green beans, one at a time, into the egg, then transfer to the bowl of breadcrumbs. Use a spoon to sprinkle the beans with the breadcrumb mixture. Place the beans on the baking sheet, leaving space between them.

Spray the beans lightly with olive oil spray. Have an adult put the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Have an adult remove the sheet from the oven and use kitchen tongs to turn the green beans over. Have an adult put the sheet back into the oven to bake another 3 to 5 minutes or until the beans are crisp.

Try the beans with a dipping sauce, such as ranch dressing or marinara.

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I LOVE giving presents—from finding the perfect gift, wrapping it in beautiful paper, and then topping it all off with an extra-special bow. But, my favorite part of giving a present is seeing the other person’s face when they open it. I can tell from their reaction if they like it or not (and almost 100% of the time, they do!).Read more

It’s a little harder to tell if someone likes something or not via emojis and texts—and that’s what I found out the hard way this week. I was texting with my best friend, Thea, when she sent a confused-face emoji after I sent a super cute gif of a duckling waddling around and falling over. I just sent it because it was cute, but she thought I was making fun of her fall in her dance rehearsal earlier that week.

After lots of “sorry-face” and “whoops-face” emojis, I think Thea understood I wasn’t making fun of her. This made me think about how there can be big mix-ups when you can’t actually see someone’s reaction to something. So, I guess some gifs are just like gifts . . . they’re really best shared when both people are there.

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Cute Animal Alert!

There are two new additions to the Pleasant View Farm family—Dash and Penelope! The baby goat (Dash) and lamb (Penelope—or Penny for short) needed a home, and luckily, I was able to convince my parents that Pleasant View Farm was the perfect place for them to live.Read more

We’ve had animals on the farm as long as I can remember. My favorite is Dandelion, a super soft white silkie chicken. Her name was inspired by the feathers on the top of her head, which stick out in all directions like a dandelion puff. Whenever my best human friend, Thea, dresses up in her feather boa, I tell her she fits right in with the chickens. Dandelion’s coop is right next to Penny and Dash’s pen, and I can tell that they’re going to be good friends.

I can’t wait for our guests to meet Dash and Penny. We put my old plastic playset in their pen, and now they take turns climbing and sliding. I know the kids will get a kick out of it. I bet some grown-ups will find themselves smiling at the sight of a goat on a ladder and a lamb on a slide.

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“Blaire-berry” Vinaigrette and Summer Salad

Today, we’re making a Blaire Wilson original recipe; a summer salad with “Blaire-berry” Vinaigrette..Read more

  • You will need:
  • For the salad (adjust quantities based on how many people you're serving):

  • •   Olive Oil
  • •   Snap Peas
  • •   Mixed Greens
  • •   Strawberries, quartered
  • •   Blueberries
  • For the vinaigrette:

  • •   ⅓ cup fresh blueberries
  • •   ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • •   ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • •   1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • •   1 teaspoon honey
  • •   A pinch of salt
  • •   A pinch of black pepper

Directions To start, heat up the olive oil in a large nonstick pan over medium-high heat and sauté the snap peas. Stir occasionally and add salt and pepper to taste. Cook until the snap peas are crisp tender—about 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool.

To make the vinaigrette, simply add all of the ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth and combined. Season with salt and pepper.

Finally, toss all of the ingredients together; the sautéed snap peas, the mixed greens, quartered strawberries, and blueberries. Lightly coat the salad with the vinaigrette—tossing and adding more if necessary to coat evenly.

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Blaire’s favorite sights

Summer is a beautiful season at Pleasant View Farms. Our B&B guests come from all over the country to enjoy the Hudson River Valley. There’s so much to do! I love to recommend sights to see. Here are some of my favorites.Read more

  • Hudson Valley Rail Trail Enjoy a walk or bike ride on a former railroad track. The picturesque paved path stretches more than five miles through forests and over creeks. Look for the old railroad signals along the way.
  • Walkway Over the Hudson You haven’t seen the Hudson Valley until you’ve seen it from 212 feet above the river. Take a guided tour to learn about the history of the bridge and the area, or enjoy the view on foot, bike, or rollerblades.
  • Kingston’s Farmers’ Market Pleasant View Farm has a booth at the weekly farmers’ market in Kingston. There are vendors and farmers from all over the Hudson Valley. From fresh fruits and veggies to delicious baked goods to homemade soaps, this market is my favorite place for amazing local food and crafts!
  • State Parks Ulster county is full of fabulous state parks, and there’s something for everyone: hiking, horse-back riding, biking, swimming, boating, and more. Wait until you see one of the waterfalls. It will take your breath away!

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DIY Inspiration Board

Get inspired by this video on how to DIY your own inspiration board! I like to put my idea sparks—things that get me thinking creatively–on my board. What will you fill yours with?Read more

  • You will need:
  • •   Corkboard
  • •   Fun fabric
  • •   Tape
  • •   Safety scissors

Directions To start, lay your fabric (a fun pattern is recommended!) face down on your workspace and set your board on top. Ask an adult to help cut the fabric around the board, leaving an inch and a half around the edge.

Fold the edge of the fabric tightly over the board and tape each side down.

Prop your board up on an easel, against a wall, or ask an adult to help you hang it. Now your board is ready to fill with fun, inspiring things like fabric swatches, pictures, magazine clippings, and dried leaves and flowers!

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Spring chickens!

Spring has officially sprung at Pleasant View Farm! Our first chicks hatched this week, which is always a tell-tale sign of warmer days to come.Read more

My best friend, Thea, was hanging out at my house when the chicks started hatching. We took a picture and called it the perfect shell-fie moment! Thea tried naming all of the new little chicks, but we lost track of who was who. We decided to call all of them “Fluffy.”

I’m excited about the chicks because they will be so fun to show our guests—especially the kids. We always have lots of families visiting during spring break, and now, we’ll have even more cute little animals for them to see. Read less

Egg-stra cheesy scramble (dairy-free)

Start your morning off right with this yummy scramble. I used eggs straight from my family’s chicken coop for this recipe!Read more

  • You will need:
  • •   2 teaspoons olive oil
  • •   1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • •   12 large eggs
  • •   2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • •   1 tablespoon dairy-free margarine
  • •   4 ounces vegan mozzarella cheese, cut into small cubes
  • •   Salt and black pepper

Directions Put the olive oil in a large nonstick frying pan and set the pan over medium heat. Add the cherry tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally until hot and beginning to soften, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper, and cover to keep warm.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, 1 tablespoon of the basil, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper until thoroughly blended.

Add the margarine to the frying pan that you used to cook the tomatoes. Set the pan over medium-low heat. When the margarine begins to foam, add the egg mixture to the pan and cook until it begins to set, about 30 seconds. Stir with a heatproof spatula, scraping the egg on the bottom and sides of the pan and folding it toward the center. Continue to stir in this way until the eggs form moist, soft curds. Stir the vegan mozzarella and tomatoes into the eggs.

Remove the pan from the heat and let stand until the vegan mozzarella starts to melt, about 1 minute. Sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon basil over the scramble and serve right away.Read less

Ready, set, plant!

It may not look like spring outside—with piles of snow slowly melting and no pretty tulips dotting the garden—but spring is definitely in full swing at Pleasant View Farm.Read more

Cat, our farm manager, is busy planting and tending to new sprouts in our greenhouses. She and my mom work together every spring to plan what kinds of farm-fresh veggies and herbs my mom wants to use in her dishes at the restaurant. One of my mom’s favorite recipes to include on the menu is one of my own creations—the Summer Salad with a “Blaire-Berry” Vinaigrette! Cat has to plant enough salad greens and snap peas to supply the restaurant AND to sell to our customers at the farmer’s market.

My brother, Beckett, and I love to help out with the spring planting, too. We have competitions to see who can plant seeds the fastest and who can spill the least while watering the new sprouts. Beckett won the planting competition this year but more of my seeds sprouted so, I think I can claim the true victory! Read less

Seed starters

Get your own garden off to a great—and green—start with this fun craft.Read more

  • You will need:
  • •   A cardboard egg carton cut in half
  • •   A small bag of potting soil
  • •   Seeds
  • •   A spray bottle with water
  • •   A garden trowel
  • •   A covered workspace

Directions Use your hands or a garden trowel to scoop your potting soil into each compartment of the egg carton, filling it nearly to the top.

Poke a hole in the potting soil with your finger, add a seed, and cover it with the soil.

When you’ve finished adding your seeds, spray the soil generously with water.

Tend to your plants throughout the spring and summer and watch them grow. Enjoy using these garden-fresh ingredients in your cooking! Read less

Blaire Wilson, At Your Service

Each day at Pleasant View Farm is so unique. I get to help out with all sorts of fun and creative tasks around the bed & breakfast and restaurant. There’s always a special decoration to create, a travel-weary guest to greet, or an exciting recipe to experiment with and blog about in the kitchen.Read more

One of my favorite things to do is spend time at the front desk. When I’m finished with my homework and my chores around the farm, I join Grandpa to greet guests. While Grandpa gets them checked in, I make sure they know what’s on Mom’s menu at the restaurant and give them ideas for things to do around the farm and in the beautiful Hudson Valley. Our restaurant and bed & breakfast brings in visitors from all around the county and all over the country. I love to meet everyone! It’s fun to learn about the places they call home and to make them feel welcome in our home.

Since lots of kids come to visit, I decided to create a special place for them to play. With Dad’s help, I turned the storage space under the stairs into a play kitchen. We built a miniature pretend stove, sink, and fridge and filled it with toy dishes and food. Dad and I even made a kid-size table and chairs. We had a blast doing it, but it’s been even more fun seeing everyone use the play space and enjoy it. Read less

Raspberry Jam Heart Cookies

My mom always says that “cooking is a form of love”—and these cookies are all heart.Read more

    You will need:
  • •   2 cups all-purpose flour
  • •   ¼ teaspoon salt
  • •   1 cup butter or coconut oil, at room temperature
  • •   ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • •   1 teaspoon vanilla
  • •   ½ Tablespoon baking powder
  • •   1 egg
  • •   ¼ cup powdered sugar for dusting the cookies
  • •   6 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam

Directions In a bowl, cream the butter or coconut oil and sugar together with an electric mixer. Once combined, beat in the egg, baking powder, salt, and vanilla.

Once combined, add the flour to the wet mixture one cup at a time and mixing after each addition. Blend last flour in by hand.

Preheat the oven to 375º and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Then, sprinkle your work surface and rolling pin with flour and roll out the dough. Using the larger heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut out as many hearts as you can. Then, using the smaller heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut out the center from half of the cookie hearts. Repeat with any remaining scraps.

Place the hearts on the prepared cookie sheets, spacing them evenly. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until the edges are lightly browned, rotating the pans halfway through.

After letting the pan cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes, use a metal spatula to move the cookies directly to the rack to cool completely.

Then, spread 1 teaspoon of seedless raspberry jam on heart without a cutout, leaving a ¼ inch border around the edge of the cookie. Place the hearts with cut-out centers on top of the jam-covered cookies. Sprinkle the cookies with powdered sugar and serve. Read less

New Year, New Traditions

Running a bustling B&B and farm-to-table restaurant is exciting, but it also means that my family has to work hard to make time to really connect with each other. My mom’s the head chef at the restaurant, so she’s super busy during mealtimes. That’s why the restaurant is closed every Monday and the Wilsons all sit down for dinner as a family.Read more

My dad suggested that when we do have a meal together, we should connect with each other and not our devices. Now we all put our phones and tablets in a basket on the counter before we sit down at the table. I created a little sign for the basket that says “Be Present.”

At first, we just used the Be Present basket for Monday dinners. But now if Mom takes a break from the restaurant to have a snack with me, or if Dad makes us lunch, everyone leaves their devices in the basket.

How does your family create quality time together that counts? What do you do to be present? Read less

Broccoli Cheddar Hug-In-A-Bowl

This Wilson-family-favorite soup recipe will warm you from the inside out!Read more

    You will need:
  • •   1 ½ pounds of broccoli
  • •   5 cups of chicken broth
  • •   2 tablespoons unsalted butter or olive oil
  • •   1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • •   ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • •   1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • •   ½ teaspoon thyme
  • •   2 cups cashew milk
  • •   ½ pound vegan cheddar, shredded
  • •   Salt and pepper

Directions Pour the broth into a medium saucepan. Set the pan over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low to maintain a gentle simmer.

Place a large saucepan over medium heat and add the butter. When the butter has melted, add the onion and cook, stirring often, until soft, about 8 minutes. Sprinkle in the flour and cook, stirring often, for 1 minute longer. Add the heated broth, chopped broccoli, lemon juice, and thyme and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer until the broccoli is tender, about 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let the broccoli mixture cool until warm, about 30 minutes.

Transfer the broccoli mixture to a blender (do this in batches if necessary). Cover and blend until the soup is smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan. Stir in the cashew milk and keep warm over low heat. Sprinkle half of the vegan cheddar into the soup and stir until melted. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Ladle the soup into bowls and top with the rest of the shredded vegan cheddar. Serve right away. Read less

From Drab to Fab!

It’s official! After years of using the old barn for storage, my family decided to renovate the barn into an event space.

Before my dad ran the farm’s businesses, he was an architect. The barn renovation was his idea, and I’ve been super excited to help him. I started saving ideas on my inspiration board—that’s the gigantic bulletin board on my bedroom wall—and it’s been amazingRead more to see them come to life. I have a million more ideas for decorations, and once the space is finished, I can’t wait to try them out. But it will be a while before the “party barn” is ready. There’s still a lot of work to be done.

If you could host an event in a barn turned from drab to fab, what would it be? What kind of décor would you decorate with and what food would you serve your guests? Read less