These muffins ended up being a little bit of work, but resulted in a beautiful combination of pumpkin, cream cheese, and strussel.
Tuesday, December 08, 2009
These muffins ended up being a little bit of work, but resulted in a beautiful combination of pumpkin, cream cheese, and strussel.
Sunday, December 06, 2009
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 cup pumpkin
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice (I added a bit more.)
1 1/4 plus 1 tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 and place liners in cup.
Whisk together pumpkin, oil, eggs, pumpkin pie spice, sugar, and soda until smooth. Slowly add in flour and baking powder. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Stir together 1 tablespoon of sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. When muffins are done, brush melted butter over the tops of the baked muffins and dip into cinnamon sugar mixture.
Saturday, December 05, 2009
Friday, December 04, 2009
I had to go with pumpkin . . . right! This recipe rates second on Jon's list of favorite pumpkin pies. Number one, would be Costco . . . and who can compete with them? Here's the recipe:
(Food Network style)
Crust - I am lazy. . . I just use the store bought ones.
1 small can of pumpkin
3/4 cup brown sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/4 cup half and half
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. each of ginger, allspice
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
Whisk together ingredients and pour into crust. Bake 50 to 60 minutes at 400. Cool on rack.
Jon also mentioned that a Boston Cream Pie would sound yummy and he had several echos. So, I pulled my recipe out and got to work. I really didn't mind, because it is so very easy! This went fast from what I understand.
Boston Cream Pie
2 round yellow cake layers (9inch circles)
1 cup cold milk
1 pkg. (4 serving) instant vanilla pudding
1 1/2 cup whipped topping
1 square unsweetened baking chocolate
1 tbsp. butter
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 tbsp. cold milk
Trim your cake to make it even using a bread knife. Set aside. Pour 1 cup milk into large bowl. Add dry pudding mix. Beat with a wire wisk for 2 minutes or until well blended. Fold in whipped topping. Let stand 5 minutes to thickin. Place bottom layer on serving plate. Spread with pudding mixture and top with remaining cake layer.
Microwave chocolate and butter 1 minute. Stir until completely melted. Add sugar and milk. Stir until well blended. Spread over top of cake. Refrigerate 1 hour until ready to serve.
Lastly, I wanted to try a new recipe with apples. I usually bake my apple cheesecake, but really wanted to try a tart. This one was quite tastey and looked so pretty! You can find the recipe over at Joy of baking.
Thursday, December 03, 2009
Monday, November 30, 2009
2 weeks ago (yes, it has been that long!), I found this recipe for the most amazing pumpkin-chip cookies I have ever tasted! I am not a huge fan of making pumpkin cookies, because they just don't store right and are more like cake than cookies. These cookies ended up being amazingly delicious. I only made cookies with half the batter and saved some for later, because they don't last long in their moist, delicious state.
Excuse my picture, I took it on my phone with not the best light. But these really are quite good!
Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies
1 cup butter
1 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup pumpkin butter
2 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cardamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp orange zest ( didn't have one, so I used a lemon)
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
Cream butter and sugar. Add egg, vanilla, and pumpkin butter. Mix well. Slowly add dry ingredients, mixing well to combine after each addition. Stir in zest and chocolate chips. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Bake for 15-18 minutes at 350 degrees.
Friday, November 27, 2009
My 20's were filled with so many adventures that I thought I would take some time to remember them for a moment.
:: Moved to Fresno
:: Traveled to El Salvador on a missions trip with my church
:: Graduated from Fresno State with my BA
:: Received my credential from FSU
:: Spent 2 years subbing
:: Attended Urbana Missions Conference (where I met my husband)
:: Taught for 4 years, moving schools 3 times and classrooms 5 times,
:: Got married to my wonderful husband, Jon
:: Traveled to Las Vegas and Chicago,Seattle, Oregon, and many of the western states
:: Gave birth to one cute little baby boy
:: Traveled and explored San Francisco too many times to count
And now I am 30. I am not sure what 30 is supposed to feel like, but I do know that I am going to dive right in and continue living life to the fullest. There are so many things that I want to do. The first is to move into my new house. I am looking forward to this upcoming adventure of being a homeowner and the many more adventures that follow.
So, bring on the 30's!
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Now, although I love cheesecake, I tend to make recipes that only have minimal blocks of cream cheese because it just gets too expensive. This recipe, however, only called for two. I added the chocolate drizzle over the top for a nice look. You can find this recipe HERE.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Believe it or not. . . I started this one last January! I just have been so busy with other projects I completely forgot about it . . . actually, it has been staring at me for 9 months! So, when all other projects had been completed I took the time to get the last few stitches finished. All that waiting and it took me 15 minutes! But, It will look perfect in my new kitchen.
This one uses my Lizzy Dish and Red Letter Day fabric. I
Saturday, November 07, 2009
Until next time!
Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Pumpkin Pound Cake -
I made this on Sunday for dinner (we were supposed to have company, but they cancelled after I had already started making it. . . So, now we have this delicious dessert to eat all by ourselves (no complaints here!). It was really easy and is super moist. It has great pumpkin flavor and looks really nice in a bunt pan. I topped it off with a dollup of homemade whipped cream and some sprinkles of nutmeg. Delicious! You can find the recipe here.
I needed to come up with a quick card for the ladies at my MOPS table, so after deciding that I was going to use this scarecrow stamp, I put this together really quick. It was super easy, no hassle card. (Stamps are Happy Fall Y'll by Stampin' Up and paper I found at JoAnns.)
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
Monday, October 26, 2009
This recipe is one that I have always admired. However, I have been kind of a baking wimp when it comes to actually making it because it just looked too hard! But contrary to my long-lasting belief that this was super hard, it was probably one of the easiest things I have ever made. I even took enough pictures to make a tutorial, if anyone is interested. . . it was that easy! I was even able to leave it cooling in the towel while out running an errand! So simple and so easy and so very delicious!
1/4 cup powdered sugar (to sprinkle on towel)
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup Pure Pumpkin
1 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup powdered sugar (optional)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan; line with wax paper. Grease and flour paper. Sprinkle towel with powdered sugar.
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt in small bowl. Beat eggs and sugar in large mixer bowl until thick. Beat in pumpkin. Stir in flour mixture. Spread evenly into prepared pan. Sprinkle with nuts.
Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until top of cake springs back when touched. Immediately loosen and turn cake onto prepared towel. Carefully peel off paper. Roll up cake and towel together, starting with narrow end. Cool on wire rack.
Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla extract in small mixer bowl until smooth. Carefully unroll cake; remove towel. Spread cream cheese mixture over cake. Re roll cake. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour. Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving, if desired.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Outside my window... The sun is shining and it's very warm. 5:00 is approaching and people are beginning to come home from work. Less than an hour till the hubby comes home and our weekend begins (he works longer hours to get every other Friday off. . . so nice!)
I am thinking... that I should be finishing the vacuuming and getting ready for tonight. Instead, I would much rather be here, writing, and hanging out with my son (who just finished his snack).
I am creating... well. . . a clean house right now. But there is card making in my VERY near future. Just needed to get the house clean so I could start. Tomorrow, I begin!
I am going... to MOPS tonight. I am leaving Ethan and Jon home to fend for themselves and I am going out. It's going to be nice.
I am reading... so much right now. But, for Bible Study we are continuing with Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire, by Jim Cymbalta. So awesome! I think that sometimes we forget how much prayer is vital in our lives. I also heard a quote recently (ironically on facebook) by John Piper about how we won't be able to use lack of time as an excuse for why we didn't pray. . . we have Facebook and Twitter.
I am hoping... to have a great weekend! I think I will, lots of fun things planned!
I am hearing... Ethan clapping and giggling. . . and whining because he's out of snacks and wants to play and I am sitting here typing. In other words, he's bored! Poor guy!
Around the house... pumpkin! Lots of pumpkin! Many new recipes to try! Very excited!
One of my favorite things... Ethan! Seriously! He's a great kid! I am never bored. Today I went and checked on him at nap time. He was just laying there almost asleep, but his eyes were open and he saw me. He just layed there and waved to me! Priceless!
A few plans for the rest of the week: I guess I should say weekend, right? It is Thursday, afterall. MOPS, cards, Chocolate Fountain Night with the ladies in my Bible Study, Teen Valley Ranch Lunch, First Grade Sunday School, and Children's Ministry training. It's going to be a busy weekend!
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Being grateful is taking the time to rejoice in the little things. It is so easy to forget that we have roofs over our heads, food on the table, clothes to wear, families that love us, and most importantly a God that loves us enough to forgive all of our mistakes (and trust me. . . I make a lot of them!). I am so thankful for all the gifts that God has given me. As I look at all the times that God has answered “no” or “wait” to my wishes and desires, I find that his presence never fails and his love abundant! He is constantly blessing me with gifts. . . no, not gifts as in beautifully, and carefully wrapped presents for me, but blessings that encourage me. . . a kind word, a hug, a smile, and even something unexpected.
So, in this time of waiting I am going to wait patiently with anticipation. God will eventually open the doors in his timing, but until then, I am going to hang out and wait for God’s blessings to shower down and swim in the blessings that already surround me!
Here are some quotes that I found about being grateful:
"He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has." – Epictetus
"Life without thankfulness is devoid of love and passion. Hope without thankfulness is lacking in fine perception. Faith without thankfulness lacks strength and fortitude. Every virtue divorced from thankfulness is maimed and limps along the spiritual road." -John Henry Jowett
“The hardest arithmetic to master is that which enables us to count our blessings.”-Eric Hoffer
"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God."-The Bible Phil 4:6 NKJV
"If a fellow isn't thankful for what he's got, he isn't likely to be thankful for what he's going to get." - Frank A. Clark
Thursday, October 15, 2009
October is here and my dreams of pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin pies, and pumpkin . . . well anything else are coming true. I live for FALL. Well, I live for Christ, but I love fall! I look forward to it all year, especially when I start getting sick of triple digit weather!
Last week, I hosted a play date for the mom's at my MOPS table. I found the Starbucks Pumpkin scone recipe. . . mmmm. . . so delicious! I made mini ones for two reasons. . .
1. smaller ones make a batch go longer
2. I just couldn't see 560 calories in just one large scone. . . why not split them up?
After making the scones, I had a half of can (or about a cup) of pumpkin left and I just couldn't let it go to waste. . . especially since there seems to be a shortage of canned pumpkins out there (Many stores in my area are sold out!). So, I found this recipe for Mini Pumpkin Whoopie Pies that only called for 1 cup and a delicious cream cheese filling. . . so very tastey! I even added some nutmeg to the cream cheese filling that just added a little touch to the already delicious treat! My small group gobbled them up on Sunday night!
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
1 cup LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
CREAM CHEESE FILLING
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
6 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
PREHEAT oven to 350° F.
Lightly grease or line four baking sheets with parchment paper. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt in medium bowl. Beat butter and sugar in large mixer bowl on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add pumpkin and vanilla extract; beat until smooth. Stir in flour mixture until combined. Drop by heaping measuring teaspoons onto prepared baking sheets. Bake for 10 to 13 minutes or until springy to the touch. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Beat cream cheese, butter and vanilla extract in small mixer bowl on medium speed until fluffy. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until light and fluffy. Spread a heaping teaspoon of filling onto flat side of one cookie; top with flat side of second cookie to make a sandwich. Repeat with remaining cookies and filling. Store in covered container in refrigerator.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Yesterday was the first, truly fall day. We had our first rainstorm of the fall/winter season. . . and it was perfect! Today. . . well, today is sunny and humid. . . did spring come early? (It's 85 degrees out there!) To make yesterday even perfect, I was treated to a delicious pumpkin spice latte and got to spend the afternoon veggin'.
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
Outside my window... sun once again shining (hey, it's California, what can I expect?), the birds are chirping, and the road is freshly repaved.
I am thinking... that it is nice to hang out in sweats and a sweatshirt and it is okay that I just fell asleep with the kiddo curled at my side, while Jon is out doing my grocery shopping and buying pajamas for the kiddo.
I am wearing...hmmmm. . . sweats and a sweatshirt. I must note that I haven't taken a shower yet and am enjoying a morning of laziness while taking care of my sick baby.
I am creating...nothing at the moment. Although it might be nice to start on some upcoming birthday presents and I am really wanting to make some cards. Oh wait, I need to make a wedding card for tomorrow. I should get on that. . .
I am going... absolutely nowhere. I am not really sure how I feel about that. I had planned on taking the family to Apple Hill today. It just sounded like so much fun. . . and fall-like. Maybe another day.
I am reading... right now. . . just keeping up on the goings of facebook. So, very lazy today.
I am hoping... that God moves this house buying situation along. My patience is wearing thin. I know I am annoying my husband because I don't want to look at other houses. . . it just makes me so sad. Then I start thinking about Christmas and get so frustrated because there are boxes and bikes blocking the fireplace so no stockings to be hung and there are toys and stuff where the tree usually goes. So, I hope that God moves us soon, because I am not sure that we will be celebrating Christmas with decorations this year. . . and this makes me very sad!
I am hearing...absolutely nothing. . . until my cell phone rang.
Around the house... it's clean here. I cleaned yesterday. . . it's nice. Although Ethan has a few toys thrown around, it is nice. A great way to start the weekend. :)
One of my favorite things...my family. I am so very thankful for the treasures that God has given me with them in my life. I am looking forward to a long weekend spending it with them.
A few plans for the rest of the week: Well, it's Friday. . . the week is nearly over. So, I guess just hanging out with the family. I do need to make some treats for Sunday school on Sunday and plan my Sunday School lesson.
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Monday, October 05, 2009
I baked them for Jon. . . he loved them and would eat them again. . . really. . . he's my biggest critic! I also sent some home with our Breauna, a college student who is just such a great friend and help! She deserves all the study food I can whip up for her!
I had my eye on this fabric for a long time. I bought it right after Christmas. I just now started using it. This fabric is the colors of our living room, and so I thought I would start making a batch of coasters. They are basically two pieces of fabric lined with some really thin batting and sewn at 1/4 inch.
Now, it is new week and it looks busy. I am hoping for some time to create. I hope it works out! If not, I have a ton of baking to do! Have a great week everyone! Enjoy the beautiful fall weather that God has given us!
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Outside my window... the sun is shining brightly and there is a soft breeze blowing! Not to mention the temperature is only in the 70's today. Can I just say . . . Pure Bliss!
I am thinking... that if I take a nap nothing will get done and that a Pumpkin Spice Latte sounds delish!
From the kitchen... hmmm. . . right now the dishwasher needs to be filled. But there are some fresh baked chocolate raspberry bars (which will get posted tomorrow?) and leftover spaghetti (with homemade sauce! scrumdiliumptious!)
I am wearing...sweat pants, tank top, sweatshirt. . . my comfy's so that I can relish in the bliss of the weather!
I am creating...nothing right now. It feels good! I did make my list of Christmas presents. Kids and women are easy. . . men . . . not so much. Too bad they don't like ties.
I am going... to take Ethan to the met tomorrow night. Bob the Builder is there and tomorrow night during Art Hop it's free. . . and I am cheap. Oh, Jon's coming too!
I am reading... Acts chapter 4 this week, more Mandie, and some craft blogs!
I am hoping... to be in a new house by my birthday. It would be the perfect birthday gift!
I am hearing...construction workers. I have absolutely no idea what they are working on. I love my apartment, but there was no mention of construction going on.
Around the house... there is a pile of boxes waiting to be packed. I am getting tired of looking at them.
One of my favorite things...HULU and netflix. Who needs TV when you can watch shows the next day?
A few plans for the rest of the week: read, organize, grocery shop. Basically the basics.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
I spent some time this weekend playing with backgrounds and banners from CBOTB along with the free software paint.net. So much fun! I have to admit I am most impressed with the banner here. Let me know what you think. . . I am curious.
I hope everyone is having a great weekend! I am off to do a little bit of baking. . . some new raspberry chocolate bars while the hubby is doing the air forecast. Looking forward to it! I will post pics and recipe soon!
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Okay for the recipe you will need a 13x9x2 inch pan. You don't need to grease it, which is nice. But, I didn't want to take my chances, so I lined it with parchment paper.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Ingredients: 2 cups flour, 1 cup light brown sugar, 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup pecan halves, 1 cup chocolate chips, 2/3 cup butter and 1/3 cup light brown sugar.
Combine flour and brown sugar in a large bowl. Cut in butter until fine crumbs form. I used my food processor and pulsed. . . it took about 15 seconds to do this.
Press mixture into bottom of your baking dish. Sprinkle pecans over top.
Prepare toffee topping by combining 2/3 cup butter and 1l/3 cup brown sugar in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until it starts boiling. Allow it to boil for 30 more seconds and then, pour over your crust.
I doubled my toffee topping, because I felt that It didn't cover enough of the crust for my taste.
Bake for about 20 minutes or until bubbly and golden. Sprinkle with chocolate chips (I may have used the whole bag?). Cool completely, cut into bars, and enjoy!
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
These are not my most favorite cookies in the world. Easy. .. yes. Tasty. . . yes. So, why are they not my favorite. Well, I quite enjoy and gooey, soft, warm cookie that melts in your mouth whereas this cookie. . . well is dry (in a good way) and crumbly. It is more like a sandie cookie (you know those almond sandies you buy in the store?). So, yes, it is good (I am sharing it with you after all), you can do so much with the basic batter and they freeze incredibly well! They also look really nice stacked. . . a great gift idea possibly?
I found the this recipe at Smitten Kitchen. She just had the most adorable baby. . . so that may be incentive enough to check her site (she posted pics of their "almost" edible little guy! Very precious!). She also gives lots of different ways to make these cookies with a selection of add ins (kind of felt like I was at the cookie version of marble slab!). I used mini chocolate chips for this batch.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Monday, September 21, 2009
Outside my window... the sun is shining and it's already getting hot. Glad I got my morning walk in early.
I am thinking... that being patient is really hard!
I am thankful for...God's constant provision.
From the kitchen... broccoli chicken casserole (for dinner) and leftover toffee bars (to be posted later this week).
I am wearing...skirt and t-shirt, but not going anywhere. . . just cool and comfy for the HOT fall day!
I am creating...a rattle, something for Jon's cousin's upcoming baby, bibs for MOPS, and something for me.
I am going... to try not to procrastinate too much . . . it's just so easy!
I am reading...hmmm. . . a lot actually. I just started the book Fresh Wind Fresh Fire for Bible Study and am loving every minute of it! I am tempted to skip ahead. I am also trying to read through the Mandie series (a childhood favorite!)
I am hoping... to hear some news of the house this week. It seems like such a long time ago that we put the offer down and won that "war." I am ready to move and make our home a bit bigger. I am happy here in our tiny apartment but long for the opportunity to host play groups and gatherings in our new, bigger home. All in God's timing, right?
I am hearing...lawn mowers. . . they are sooo loud!
Around the house...toys. . . blocks. . . since Ethan's birthday there are blocks everywhere! I love it!
One of my favorite things...right now. . . quiet Monday. Jon has the car today (his carpool buddy ditched him on accident) and it leaves me to a peaceful day with no errands. That and semi-frozen water bottles!
A few plans for the rest of the week: sew, sew, read, read. I really want to stay more consistent with my quiet times. I do so well and then I get to the end of a study or really busy and somehow they just get put aside. I am trying to regain my focus on spending time studying God's Word. It is just so important. . . my source of peace, patience, joy, love, and endurance! My cup needs refilled.
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Now, for some random thoughts . . .
:::: This week was the first week I haven't had much to do, so I found some time to get sick (now better) and read! It has been so relaxing!
:::: This week I am going to get my sewing machine out and do some sewing. . . I have some new fabric that I can't wait to try out. I am really excited about my new Lizzy House Red Letter day fabric to go with her Lizzy Dish line. I think it will make some awesome hot pads . . . for my new kitchen (if we ever move!).
:::: Starting a new Bible Study this week (well, it started last week, but I was too sick to go. . . sniff sniff) going through Acts and reading Fresh Wind Fresh Fire, by Jim Cymbala. I just got my copy today and already Jon is hooked. . . must be a good read! I am excited to get started.
:::: I am wondering if it is possible to find do it yourself projects for men. . . that are actually masculine and fun. If anyone has any suggestions, please. . . please comment.
:::: I am really excited about a fun, fall toffee recipe I am going to try out tomorrow. . . if its any good, I'll post something soon.
I hope that you are able to take some time and just read a book. . . I definitely feel refreshed and ready to begin some sewing projects!
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Fabric Bunting - I made this out of Michael Miller and Amy Butler fabric. My inspiration was to have on that matched his bedroom. . . I can't wait to put this up when we move!