Cousins’ Dinner

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

Hey there!

I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.


An in-depth, 4-week reverse dieting course for women who feel like their metabolism has slowed down, think they might have hormonal imbalance and can’t lose weight no matter what they do.

Hi, friends! Happy Sunday!

Last night, I went to my cousin Heidi’s house for dinner and drinks. She and her husband, Matt, just bought a house, so they invited Mal and me, her sister, Meeghan, and her boyfriend, and my sister and her husband over to see their new place.


The evening started with a wonderful spread of appetizers.



Roasted garlic —> mashed into a paste + olive oil = amazing!!!


There was also all sorts of drinks””beer, wine, and hard cider. (I got friendly with Kim Crawford.)


And a couple of dogs!



Kisses for Meeghan!


Baby bump! My sister finds out the sex of the baby next Thursday!


For dinner, we had salad with roasted chickpeas and homemade Caesar dressing.


And baked spaghetti squash with homemade turkey meatballs.


The sauce was made with fresh tomatoes and basil from Heidi and Matt’s garden. Mmm! So good!


Don’t you love the way Heidi and Matt served the spaghetti squash!?


For dessert, I made No Bake Caramel Cheesecake Bars from PaleOMG. A couple of my friends from CrossFit raved about these bars, so I just had to give them a try myself. They were so easy to make””just blend the various ingredients, layer in a dish, and freeze. OMG, delicious!


They were a huge hit with everyone last night.


Question of the Day

Do you have a big family or a small family?

My mom has 7 brothers and sisters, so family get-togethers are always fun and a little bit crazy!



  1. My immediate family is small, only 5 of us. But once you get into the extended family, oh my gosh! I have over 40 great aunts and uncles, so it’s a bit crazy around here! We have a country family, so get togethers always include a ranch, and some SERIOUS homecooking 🙂

  2. I definitely come from a big family. My mom is one of five and there are 10 grandchildren (11 including my cousin’s husband). On my dad’s side, he’s one of four, and there are seven grandchildren (9 including husbands and wives). We’re never all together at one time, just can’t fit us in one place!

  3. I love the spaghetti squash. Looks yummy!
    Those cheesecake bars look divine. I should make these for my next family get together.
    We have a pretty big family on my dads side so it’s always fun over there. My mom was an only child so there usually isn’t a lot to do. She always wishes she would have had a brother

  4. When will you be sharing Heidi & Matt’s meatball recipe? They, along with the spag. squash look a-nom-mazing!!!!!!

  5. Totally unrelated but just wanted to say that I finally tried your French toast breakfast scramble this morning and it was delicious! Thanks for the recipe. I’m going to attempt making it at nights and then packing it for breakfasts at work. Hopefully it’ll work out ok!

  6. I don’t have a real big family, but we can still get pretty loud and crazy when we’re all together! All of the food looks delish, especially those Paleo Cheesecake bars. I will definitely be heading over to check out the recipe.

  7. I’m technically the youngest of 5 kids-my dad had 3 in his first marriage then my brother and I in his 2nd. My brother went off to boarding school when I was 10, so sometimes I (ironically) feel like an only child! Lots of nieces and nephews now though!

  8. I have what I consider a medium sized family! Haha, my mom has 2 brothers and there are 10 cousins total (including myself). My dad’s side of the family lives on the east coast and we don’t see them too much so I don’t usually include them in family size assessment.

  9. My mom has 2 sisters and my dad has 3 siblings. Compared to your family we are small but we definitely get rowdy! I definitely want to make the bars. The only thig that keeps me from making some of the raw/vegan desserts is the Amt of ingredients and price. Have a good sunday!

    1. Oh, yea, these bars definitely weren’t cheap! I had most of the ingredients in the house, but even still I probably shelled out $20 for nuts. They are really good though! 🙂

  10. We’re definitely a small family. I have no siblings, my mom has one sister and her sister has 3 kids around my age (we’re all 23-31). Our grandparents/ great grandparents her gone, so not many of us! We do celebrate holidays/birthdays with my great aunt & her 2 children & son in law. When we’re all together, there’s only 13 of us. 😉

  11. Looks yummy and fun! I love the presentation of the spaghetti squash!

    My family is all spread out so we don’t get to do get-together like that very often.


  12. holy crap. I need to make that dessert.
    I’m a coconut and almond butter psycho and this recipe is making my mouth water. NOM.

  13. We have a small family but a close one! I love when I get togehter with my cousins and their kids! That roasted garlic and olive oil combo looks devine. I’d love some for dinner tonight : )

  14. Pretty darn small. My parents are divorced and we don’t associate with my father’s side of the family. My mom has a brother and a sister, whom are married, but never had any children. So, I have no first cousins. I have 2 sisters, and am expecting the first niece or nephew to be born in June 🙂

  15. I had a really small family until my mom got remarried. Holidays when I was little were always just my grandparents, mom and I. My mom only has one sister and she lived in NC, we lived in MN, so we didn’t get to see them to often.

  16. Congrats to your sister!! That’s exciting she’ll find out the sex of the baby soon 🙂
    Spaghetti squash with turkey meatballs looks devine! I’ve had turkey chili over spaghetti squash before, it’s so good with a meaty topping!
    Do you have a recipe for the roasted chickpeas? Those also look amazing!

  17. Everything looks so good! I’m also a big fan of Kim C! Sooo good!
    I’m the oldest of 7, my dad is the 7th of 8 and my mom is the 7th of 7….so I have a huge family and it is a blast!

  18. For some reason I always find it weird when I see New Zealand wines in foreign countries. But Kim Crawford is one of my wine brands.

  19. I always love seeing people’s responses when I answer this question 🙂 I’m from a family of 9, and my husband from a family of 10. My dad has 9 siblings, and my mother-in-law has 15!!! We are incredibly close to both families.

    It’s safe to say that we are extremely busy ALL year around! 🙂

  20. Those bars look great! I will try them soon! I’m an only child. :(. I didn’t mind it as a kid but I hate it as an adult. Also my mom raised me alone. So I’d say my family is pretty small!

  21. Yum, that all looks delicious! I have a small family. I really wish it was bigger, because it puts a ton of pressure on my sisters and I to live up to everyone’s standards.

  22. I have such a small family. I am an only child/grandchild. I have no first cousins. My mom has one brother who we never see who has no kids. Only one grandparent is still alive. It is sort of sad to have a little family and even the family I have we rarely see each other.
    I think it is nice when I see or hear of families that get along and do special things together. Though I know sometimes large families can bring stress too.

  23. Your sister looks so cute! Love a baby belly! I would LOVE the recipe for those meatballs! They look amazing! btw, I am SO addicted to your French Toast Scramble! I look so forward to it and my dog loves the leftover egg yolks!

  24. I have a small immediate family and a BIG extended family. I like it that way because we get together with the big family once a year and it is crazy loud and crazy fun. 🙂 I know when I get married in June that certain Aunts will be giving funny stories/toasts and embarassing me. I wouldn’t have it any other way! <3

  25. That recipe looks amazing, but I will have to wait for an event to make them because having a dessert lurking around my apartment makes for some bad decisions. Lunch dessert? why not?

    My family is mid-sized, but super spread out, so BIG family gatherings are far and few between.

  26. Fun!! Congrats to your sis!

    I have a HUGE family–I have 9 siblings -and a mom & a dad. So we’re all super tight. And, 5 of us are married & 4 of the 5 married ones have kids….so yah, it gets awesomely loud & fun!! 🙂

  27. My parents each have 3 siblings, so we have a big family feel, but we are a very manageable size 🙂 I want 4 kids so I can replicate the feeling…I have 2 sisters and my hubby has 1. I wish our kids would have more aunts and uncles!

  28. I have a small immediate family, just my parents and one brother. However, my extended family is pretty big. My mom grew up with six siblings and my grandmother grew up with 12 siblings. Lots of aunts, uncles, and cousins!

    I just recently discovered how delicious spaghetti squash is. I avoided it for the longest time because I’m really not a fan of squash. Now that I’ve made a couple dishes with spaghetti squash, I want to find more recipes to try.

  29. How good is that Kim Crawford? I bought a bottle this past weekend and LOVE it. It’s reasonably priced too. Those meatballs look amazing! I am the oldest of 4. 3 girls and 1 brother. We are a pretty big family. Stay warm this week…

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