Saturday, March 29, 2014

It was a chocolate donut kind of morning!

This morning, I woke up to what seemed like a very quiet house.  It was almost 8:00 and there was not the pitter patter of little feet.  There was no 3 year old hopping into bed saying mommy, mommy, mommy.  I was not smothered with kisses at an ungodly hour.  When I finally emerged from my room, I found my husband and 5 year old playing video games and no sign of the little.  Apparently, he was still asleep.  Seriously.  BEST. DAY. EVER!!!!

So, I made donuts.  Because it's Saturday.  The kids voted on chocolate with chocolate ganache (they have great taste. . . I've done my job!).   I got on Pinterest and found a great pin (well, lots. . . this was just the one we picked).
It's mornings like this, I am thankful for a shelf full of sprinkles.  Because sprinkles make everything happier.

I think this guy just would eat frosting, ganache, and sprinkles all day if we let him.  I actually found him snitching a bite of another donut about 30 mintues later. . . after breakfast and this mess was already cleaned up.  I found him with another chocolate grin. . . couldn't hide that!

Baked Chocolate Donuts with Chocolate Ganache
adapted from King Arthur Flour

2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 3/4 cup flour
1 1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup milk
2 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. vinegar
1/2 cup melted butter

1 cup chocolate chips
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream

Preheat oven to 350.

Grease your donut pan with your favorite spray.  Do this each time you put new batter in them. 
In a large mixing bowl, mix together melted butter and sugar.  Add milk, eggs, and vinegar.  Stir until well mixed.  Slowly add your dry ingredients, being sure NOT to over mix.  You don't want tough donuts.  

Spoon mixture into donut pan, about 3/4 full.  Bake for about 13 minutes.  

 While donuts are baking, pour whipping cream into a microwave safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds (or so until just bubbly).  Add chocolate chips and whisk until dark and creamy.  Let it rest for a bit while donuts are cooking to allow to thicken. 

Once donuts are done, pop them out on to a wire rack.  I recommend using one that is raised about a half inch off the ground and putting waxed paper under it (less mess to clean up).  Let them cool for a few minutes so you don't burn them and then dip them in chocolate ganache and immediately sprinkle your favorite sprinkles on them.  Let sit until cool (if you can) and eat. 

This batch made 14 donuts in a regular sized donut pan (not mini). 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Target Love!

Confession:  I have been trying to write this post for 3 days.  Yep.  It's been one of those weeks!  But, here I am refreshed and energized after a morning of Starbucks and shopping. . . kid free.  I feel so blessed that my MIL watches the littlest so I can refuel.  And after this week of allergies and tired mornings, I was ready!   
However, have you seen these in the dollar spot at Target?  
Seriously, one of my favorite finds. ever!  I absolutely love the colors. . . Coral is really in right now and I am jumping on that bandwagon (if you don't believe me come look at my kids clothes. . . I blame Crazy 8!).
I made this one with some white card stock, a mypaperpumpkin stamp, and the coordinating paper.  I punched them out with the mini banner punch from SU's saleabration this spring.  I love how it came out!  I was completely inspired by a card I got in the mail from my SU demonstrator (and friend) Amy.  She's got tons of great ideas. . . check out her blog!  

In other news,
I got my hairs did!  My amazingly talented friend, Kiley, gave me a refreshing new do last week and I am just loving it.
And then, I found this inside one of my old Bibles.  Seriously. . . I have completely forgotten about this!  I was so encouraged!  Definitely not going to be giving this Bible away anytime soon!  I think it is was one of my favorite Bibles in high school.

I hope you all have a fantastically wonderful Friday and weekend!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Friday goodness {chocolate Chip Cookies. . . again!}

It has been a great day. . . and it's not even over yet!  I firmly believe that Friday's generally go down that way.  I mean. . . Fun Friday is a must in my house!  This morning, Ethan went to school, the hubs stayed home with Weston and I went and got my hair chopped off and then I ventured over to Target for a kid-free visit.  My husband asked me if I was ever coming home.  I told him someday.  Seriously. . . Target may just be one of my happy places.  My happy place list kind of goes like this: Beach, San Francisco, Target.  I'm not going to lie. . . it's a peaceful place, especially when I am there without any kids! I know there are others out there who feel the same as me!  Let's stand strong!  

So in honor of it being Fun Friday, let me share this new favorite recipe that I found thanks to my good friend Pinterest.  I had pinned these awhile back and the recipe was pretty awesome since, it was the last week of the month. . . you know the week, you are just trying to survive (that's why I call it survivor week!).   I didn't have a ton of flour (I think I actually had to borrow a 1/4 cup from my friend), but I had a ton of whole wheat pastry flour!  These cookies also used a bit of coconut oil, which is very quickly becoming one of my new favorite ingredients!  Coconut oil has so many amazing health benefits that is it just seems to fitting to add them into America's favorite cookie!  My favorite thing is that my husband (who hates coconut) couldn't taste the coconut oil and ate these up so quickly!
Seriously, I wish we had some left.  If I wasn't about to leave for some more Friday fun, I would totally whip up a batch right now.  But, instead I am going to share it with you.  You could make them. . . and then share them with a good friend!  Remember my "be a blessing" challenge?  Have you blessed someone this week?  I sure hope so!!!!  Let's spread some love, joy, and maybe some cookies!
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Coconut Oil Cookies
from Sugar and Grace

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup coconut oil
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup quick oat
1 cup mini chocolate chips

Cream together butter, oil, and sugar until smooth and combined.  Add eggs one at a time beating until smooth.  Add vanilla.  Then add, baking soda, powder, and salt.  Mix again.  Add in flour, mixing until just combined.  Scrape sides of the bowl and then add whole wheat pastry flour and repeat process.  Add in oats and chocolate chips and mix together until evenly combined.  Chill dough for about 20-30 minutes, while you preheat your oven to 350.  Use your cookie scoop or roll into balls and place on cookie sheet.  Bake for 9 minutes.  Let cool and then move to a cooling rack. . . our your mouth, whichever you prefer.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Monday Meanderings {St. Patrick's Day & a challenge}

Happy St. Patrick's Day!  I hope that you all are having a fun day wearing green, eating corned beef and cabbage, and devouring as many chocolate coins that you can find!

St. Patrick's Day is pretty low key around here.  We wear green, do themed crafts, and go on with life.  But, the one thing I really like is that it provides the perfect excuse to treat teachers, aids, and friends to something special.  Yesterday's post kind of bummed me out, but then I did these for the teachers and I felt better.
Please excuse the cell phone picture at night time with really bad lighting. I used my SU set, It's a Wrap Holidays to wrap a few Hershey Nuggets.  I stamped it with garden green ink.   I used some chevron washi tape and punched out hexagons to make the tag.  Then I added a YUM with dimensionals (because chocolate is yummy!).  I thought they turned out super cute!  

I can't begin to express how much I am enjoying blessing my child's teacher.  In a time when there is a lot of complaining towards public schools, teachers, and common core, teachers are under so much stress.  I think little things like this are ways to plant seeds of joy and excitement into your child's teacher.  It is NOT an easy job (trust me, I know!), and often times the littlest bit of encouragement will go along way.  So, I challenge you to do one thing nice for your child's teacher (or someone you know) this week.  Post it to the FB page or use #outoftherightbrainteacherchallenge on instagram.  I would love to see what you are up to, maybe giveaway a prize, and do a readers spotlight as a blogpost.  So. . . start pinning and get crafty.  

Sunday, March 16, 2014

St Patrick's Day Eve {Printable}

I am a huge procrastinator.  Seriously.  I have a problem.  I always wait until the last minute.  But, I feel like I work better under pressure.  Really, creativity just comes to me when I am under stress.  At least that's what I keep telling myself.  So, last night after the kids went to bed, I put this printable together so I could print it out and put little gold wrapped Rolo candies on each one (you know, a pot of gold).  I was going to do this for Ethan's classmates and yep. . . I ran out of yellow ink.  It printed out turquoise and said ranbow instead of rainbow.  But, since it isn't something that has to be done. . . I am just going to forget it and share it with you.  I even had an idea for how to  use it with a clear treat bag full of Rolos to give to my best friend. . . (sorry, it isn't happening after all).  

Well, you can enjoy my misfortune and maybe use it for yourself?  I will be back tomorrow to show what I did for the teachers.  It's going to be so cute (and it doesn't take printer ink. . . so I'm good!).  
If you use this, let me know how you used it. . . or send me a picture or share it on my FB page.  I would love to see your creativity!  Maybe I will even do a reader spotlight. . . 

 Click here to print the document

Friday, March 14, 2014

Paper Pumpkin {January love}

Okay, so I am soooo happy that it's Friday.  Today, my voice is finally back!  Kind of.  Thank goodness people can hear me, but I still sound like I am sick.  Darn allergies!  
Anyways, it's Friday and I feel like it's filled with some pretty fun stuff!  We get to start with birthday celebrations for my wonderful husband and some nice, relaxing fun!  I am looking forward to it!  
So, back in January my Valentine's Paper Pumpkin came and it was incredibly fun!  The possibilities were endless.  I still have a lot of stickies left and can't wait to use them in some other cards in the future!  The stamps were awesome:  arrows and the word LOVE.  I know that those are going to be useful in the future!  Wedding cards, love notes to the husband (and kids) are just a start!  And arrows are very trendy right now!
 These cards were 2 sided with Kraft on one side and a solid and printed on the other side.  I chose to use the Kraft for the outside and the printed showing through.  On this particular card, I flipped the corner up and taped it.  Then, I added a sticky embellishment (heart).  I also, cut the doilies in half so I had them for other projects, too.  

Here's all 4 of them, each a little bit different from the others.  It was fun and so simple.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

A new favorite {Vegetarian Enchilada Pizza}

Today, I woke up with hardly a voice.  It's hard sounding horrible but feeling pretty good.  I blame it on Spring.  It get's me every time!  Good thing it doesn't take a voice (except the ones in my head) to write a blog post. . . or this would never get done!  There's not a ton of really anything going on in my kitchen this week except looking for it.  I found the counters and tomorrow, I hope to find the sink.  It's good to take a beak every now and then!  I really, REALLY need to declare spring cleaning on my pantry!  I can hardly open and shut the doors. . . it's bad!  

So, on to the delicious yumminess that awaits you with this post.  And there is really good news:  this might be WAYYYY healthier than anything else I usually bring you.  Your Welcome.   This recipe was inspired by this post over at Two Peas & their Pod.  It looked delicious when I saw it, but I new right away it was missing protein, which for me is super important, especially on our Meatless Meal nights.  
 Gather all your ingredients:  tortillas, sliced olives, sliced onions, chopped red peppers, drained and rinsed black beans, corn, red enchilada sauce, and cheese (we have a variety from regular cheddar to soy and dairy free!).
 In your favorite skillet (I love my cast iron!), heat some olive oil up and then drop your sliced onions in for some sweating.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
 When they start getting soft, go ahead and drop your chopped red peppers in.  Continue sauteing until soft. It's going to smell sooo good!  Yo may even want to eat from the pan. . . go head, I won't tell!
 In your favorite raised baking sheet, lay out your tortillas and spray with baking spray.
 Go ahead and work out your frustrations, irritations, or joy by stabbing a fork all over your tortillas.  This will allow air to go through them as they heat. . . I think. . .  Bake in the oven at 400 degrees for about 5 minutes.
 Spread red enchilada sauce all over.  Add extra. . . again, I won't tell.
 Add your sauteed ingredients, corn and black beans. Cilantro too.  I love cilantro. . . it goes in almost everything.  Really!  At this point, half of them are missing the onions because the hubs is very anti onions, but the beauty of the recipe is that it's easy to adapt for the likes of your family! You could probably get the kids involved.  In fact, next time I think I am going to.
 Top with cheese.  Because cheese is wonderful.  Rice cheese. . . well, it's almost wonderful!  Bake for another 5 minutes, or until your cheese is melty delicious.
At this point your house is going to be smelling amazing and your stomach is going to be begging for food.  (trust me. . . it is!).  And guess, what dinner was so easy and it's time to eat!  Top with a dollop of sour cream and dig in!

My husband fell in love with this recipe and we've now eaten it several times!  So yummy and I don't think it's all that bad for you.

Enjoy!  I am off to go catch up on some Psych.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Monday Meanderings {favorite things}

Happy Monday!  Maybe I should rephrase that:  Happy Day after Daylight Savings Day!  Yuck, right?  Sometimes I wish I lived in Arizona where they don't have to worry about those things. . . then I think.  Nope.  I am happy where I am.  But, I could do without the whole loosing an hour of sleep.  My kids don't seem phased.  I, on the other hand, could use any extra sleep I can find.  Perhaps, maybe I should go to sleep earlier than I do instead of crafting, playing tetris blitz, or hanging with the hubs.

So, because I am pooped and I am sitting here motivating myself to get up and make some cookies and make dinner, I am going to share some of my favorite things.

1 .  Move over Matching with friends. . . Tetris Blitz has taken over!  It is now the one and only game on my phone.  I've always been a huge fan of Tetris, and this one is just as fun!  Perfect for laying in bed trying to fall asleep.  You can find it in the iTunes store for free.  (Free is good. . . it's pretty much the only way I tend to buy games).

2.  This morning I had to go to the doctor to check my thyroid (fun times) and purposely made an early appointment so I didn't have to wait.  I even was able to fit in Starbucks on my way home.  Best way to start a Monday (post daylight savings) in my book!  I tried the Cinnamon Dolce Latte out today and it was a fabulous decision.  I may be hooked!  Have you tried it?  What's your favorite coffee?

3.  Dee Henderson.  She is one of my favorite authors. ever.  I am currently reading one of her newest books, Unspoken and am loving it.  I don't get to sit down and read often, but today I enjoyed a little outdoor reading time while the little guy blew bubbles and drove his car around the back yard.  Her books give some great suspense and adventure as well as creatively weaving Christ's love into the picture.  Her books are great in so many ways!

And just like that nap time is over and I need to get some work done!  I hope to be back later this week with something fun. . . and tasty!  Happy Week!

Friday, March 07, 2014

for your Saturday {Peanut Butter Donuts}

Okay.  I am just going to be honest.  My week has pretty much sucked.  It's just one of those weeks that I really don't want to repeat.  Especially since in the first hours of the day it went from being a fairly decent day to have the garage door completely falling off it's hinge (not kidding!) and my oldest being sent home sick for a red eye (possibly pink eye) and picking him up and seeing no sign of pink eye.  The car was stuck in the garage until just a few minutes ago.  Seriously.  I am ready for Monday, just so a new week can begin and maybe. . . just maybe things can get back to normal. 

 So, if your week was like mine or if you just have a sweet tooth.  Then you should make these.  If you haven't gone out at bought a doughnut pan. . . go now.  Use your 40 percent off at JoAnn's and you can get it cheaper than at Sur la table.  Really. . . just do it.  You will thank me later.  
 Look at these.  Your mouth is watering already.  I know it is.  You don't have to hide it.  You don't have to wait until morning.  Why not make them now?  If my kitchen wasn't such a mess, I would go do that now.  But, oh, I am definitely making donuts in the morning!

You can find this yummy recipe over here.  And now, I am going to go and try to have a better day.  It needs to be done.  It has to be done. . . or I am just going to stay in bed tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

A birthday card

Wowzers!  It's almost the end of Wednesday and I am pooped!  I seem to be pooped a lot lately.  Oh well.  Today, my kids spent the majority of their time outside playing.  It's spring here in Sunny {overcast} California.  It was a very peaceful dinner making experience, watching my sweet boys play together from the kitchen window.  I have a horrible hankering to go to the beach. . . it's my happy place!  But, in the meantime, I will get stuff done. . . including this blog post.  
So, it is super hard to make a handmade card masculine.  I found an idea very similar to this on Pinterest and quickly dug out some coordinating scraps and started cutting.  Then I looked for some fun embellishments to finish off the effect!  I am loving the way it came out!

My mom did just buy me a set that will work perfect for creating a bit more man-friendly cards. . . although my husband lives in doubt.  We will see!

Monday, March 03, 2014

Monday Meanderings.

It's Monday.  I don't know about you guys, but I don't feel like doing a whole lot of anything on Mondays . . . especially THIS Monday!  Man, I am such a slacker!  I should be sewing right now, but I am sitting here blogging and watching While you were sleeping on Netflix.
I am exhausted, but that's probably because I waited til the last minute to prep some art projects for my son's TK class.  Last night, (after the Oscars, of course), I was so thankful for my Cricut.  Seriously, it makes prep time go so much quicker!  And, when I picked up Ethan from school, they were hanging up and they looked so cute!  I've mentioned ways to bless your child's teacher (if you have school-aged children) before, and here's another one:  offer to prep things at home.  It will truly bless the teacher, because that opens doors to more creative things in the classroom and more time your child's teacher can spend with their family.  Seriously.  It didn't take too long, either!
We've been spending a lot of time coloring at our new table.  I love it!  It makes me not want to cook though. . . Sometimes I would just rather color!
I also started the the lengthy process of painting our cupboards in the kitchen.  There are a lot of them!  It's going to take forever!  Good thing we aren't' doing the floors until the summer!  I'm doing Annie Sloan in Graphite. This picture is after first or second coat.  I'm only doing it in sections, but it's going to take forever!!!  I will try to keep you posted!
I finally sewed up my sister's project bag.  She is an amazing knitter and was wanting something to carry some projects when she goes to have coffee of sit and wait for her son to get out of school.  I am really loving how this came out!
And my garden is sprouting like crazy!  It has really enjoyed our sunny weather and last week's rain storms.  I have snap peas, lettuce, spinach, green onions, carrots, peppers, and tomatoes growing.  Oh, and some beets.  I love watching the progress!  

Pinterest is getting me in trouble with all sorts of yummy recipes and projects on my wish list!  I can't wait to show you some new things!!!  What have you been up to?  


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