A group of colorful summer cocktails outside on a wooden table

WOW WOW WOW! I can’t believe how long it’s been since I posted one of these little updates/short list of a few things I’m loving lately. I blame working on my cookbook, which completely occupied a full year of my life, two if you count the time I spent working on the recipe index and book proposal. We also just finished redoing our kitchen (see the finished product here), so that was quite the side project as well.

I turned in my cookbook manuscript (all the final writing, tested recipes, and photos) back in February. Since then, it’s been quite a bit of “hurry up and wait.” Our first round of edits was in May/June. In two weeks, I’m due to receive the final round of copyedits, which from what I hear, will totally and completely devour every ounce of my energy and time.

Until doomsday edit day, I’m trying for a mix of a) getting ahead on recipes so you won’t go hungry, b) spending time with friends, with c) a trip to EUROPE thrown in. I’m heading to London and Copenhagen soon, so be sure you are following Well Plated on Instagram. I’ll be sharing our adventures on my story! (And, if you have any recommendations, specifically breakfast spots, I’d love to hear about them in the comments below.)

On a more personal note, I’m fighting end of summer FOMO. Because June was so cold and rainy, the city didn’t come alive in Milwaukee until July. Rather than mourn all the things we didn’t do (we never made it camping, I missed at least half of the festivals on my list, and many a patio goes un-cheersed upon), I’m working to open and fill my heart with gratitude for all that we DID.

From outdoor music, to lazy lake days, to baking not one but TWO summer fruit pies, to a fun wine trip with girlfriends, it’s been a beautiful season. AND, it’s not over yet!

Here are some of my favorite finds of the summer.

IT’S NOT TOO LATE TO ENJOY THESE! I’m excited to use them year-round. I’ve also included a few late-summer recipes I’ve loved to help you take advantage of the weeks (and produce!) that still abound.

THIS REUSABLE COFFEE/WATER CUP. I am legitimately obsessed with this cup. It works for both hot and cold drinks and comes with two lids, one with a straw for cold drinks and one “sip” style lid for hot drinks. Any liquids you put in this cup will stay either ice cold or piping hot for hours. Also, ALL THE COLORS. After an embarrassing amount of debate, I went for the Sweet Taffy. It’s super pretty in person.

Related: This Wine Cup. It also works with both cold and hot beverages, and was my faithful companion at the lake and picnics. My neighbor loved mine so much, she bought one too. I have the unicorn magic color. Despite the amazing name, it’s not that sparkly in person, so just be warned. My neighbor bought the pink one, and it’s lovely.

Books I Loved. Where the Crawdads Sing; Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine. I just started Flight Behavior (<—Barbara Kingsolver is one of my favorite authors).

The Lip Gloss That Looks Good on EVERYONE. It’s not sticky. It lasts for hours. Every girl I know who’s tested it out ended up buying it. (I have the color “glow.”)

Sephora VIB Sale Top Picks (15% off HAPPENING NOW! Use code “SUMMERSAVE” for an extra discount across the site). The ultimate dry shampoo (works even when your hair gets sweaty from working out!); this serum ($$ but it lasts forever, and I feel actually helps my skin); this translucent setting powder (total game changer for my makeup routine! Fights shine and sets makeup without looking cakey).

The Best Basic Tee. This cropped tee. I don’t usually go for boxy, but I love this one. The material is the perfect weight. Not too thick, not too thin. I really hope they come out with more colors soon!

Best Jeans I’ve Ever Bought. They don’t stretch out, the denim color is ultra versatile, and they have just the right amount of distress. They run a little big, so consider sizing down.

Cute, Comfy Shoes I Just Got for Europe. Fully embracing this ‘90s resurgence.

Other People’s Recipes I Made and Loved. My friend Kathryne’s Ultimate Gazpacho. Use homegrown tomatoes, and try it topped with Greek yogurt; Ina’s Moroccan Grilled Lamb Chops from Cooking for Jeffrey. This recipe (and learning to grill lamb!) has been on my bucket list for a while, and it did not disappoint.

Personal Favorite Recipes from my Blog Lately. Crock Pot Creamed Corn (I don’t even like creamed corn that much, but THIS?? So good); Eggplant Lasagna (healthy, low-carb comfort at its finest); Healthy Zucchini Muffins (the best zucchini muffins ever); Tomato Farro Risotto (new and already so many glowing reviews!).

How a Professional Restaurant Critic Uses Technology. I totally agree with the restaurant iPad comment (and yes, I use Yelp).

How Often To Clean Your Phone. Um…I should do this more.

Articles, products, or recipes you are loving lately? Life tips? Please leave a comment. It makes my day to hear from you!