Sunday, November 16, 2014

Nice to see you again!

Wow. My last post was in December of 2011!

Life threw me some curve balls but almost 3 years later I'm out of grad school with my masters and in a job I love. Something else that I love that has continued to grow is my love of sewing. Quilting in particular has won my heart. It's my therapy and my happy place! I've become a fabric hoarder as many quilters will understand it comes with this habit!

Here are some quilts I've finished or I'm working on.

Here's one that's been in the works for about 3 years. It's a WIP for my sister. Something else always comes up, but I want to finish it before the end of the year.

Today I had a proud moment regarding my skills to teach someone how to sew. My friend Melissa and I met in grad school and once school was done she asked me if I would teach her how to use a sewing machine and how to sew. I was slightly hesitant because I wasn't sure about my skills as a teacher. We have been meeting for about 2 months about 4 times and for a few hours. We catch up, chat, run to the fabric store, eat, drink, and then we tackle a skill or project. I could tell tonight that she was gaining confidence in her own skills which made me proud and made me think that maybe just maybe I am a good teacher! How cute is this dinosaur tail??

Which makes me think of possibly organizing some sewing classes. Something I've been thinking about. I want to build my network of crafty people and also spread my love for sewing and quilting. Hopefully this works out. Starting with one or two students and going from there. I wish there were some quilting groups around this area as well, maybe this will be another thing on my list. Possibly. This to do list is getting long! Thank goodness grad school is done!

Promised myself I would update this more often.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

It's been a while...

Man! Things have been a little hectic over here in my little corner of the world. I think a proper blog is due but tonight I just wanted to share one of the best cupcake recipes EVER. Ever since I was little Cinnamon Toast Crunch has been my favorite cereal besides Corn Flakes of course. I was browsing over on Pinterest and saw the recipe for these amazing cupcakes and knew I HAD to make them. I wasn't prepared for how delicious these would truly be! I had to share the recipe too good to keep to myself :) WARNING: the frosting is to die for so please do not try to eat and hoard the whole bowl of it before you decorate the cupcakes as I tried to do!

Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cupcakes (recipe from: Your Cup of Cake)

Cinnamon Cake:
3 eggs
1/3 cup oil
¾ cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¾ cup sour cream
Vanilla Cake Mix (not white cake mix)
1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup Cinnamon Toast Crunch, lightly crushed

Cinnamon Toast Crunch Buttercream:
8 oz cream cheese, softened
½ cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups powdered sugar
2/3 cup Cinnamon Toast Crunch powder (make sure it's powder if not it will clog your tip and frosting bag when you try to pipe the frosting on the cupcakes)
(Crush the cereal in a bag and then sift out 2/3 cup leave some for garnishing on top)

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line pans with 20-22 cupcake liners.
2.In a large bowl, gently combine eggs, oil, buttermilk and vanilla.
3.Mix in sour cream.
4.Add cake mix and cinnamon and mix until smooth.
5.Stir in lightly crushed cereal.
6.Fill cupcake liners ¾ full and bake for 15-18 minutes, or until an inserted knife comes out clean.
7.Buttercream: Beat cream cheese and butter until fluffy. Add Cinnamon Toast Crunch powder. Add vanilla and powdered sugar. Adjust the consistency using milk if it is too thick. ( I also added a half a teaspoon of cinnamon...cause I love the stuff!)
8.Pipe onto cooled cupcakes and top with some cinnamon toast crunch powder and Cinnamon Toast Crunch squares.

These were a major hit! Perfect for all those Christmas parties right now :)

Monday, September 12, 2011

copycat I am

         I'm not really one to really order dessert when I go out to dinner but whenever I go to Applebee's I have to order a Maple Butter Blondie. I mean I'm normally a chocolate girl but this dessert is sooooo yummy! So when I was browsing on Pinterest and saw that someone had pinned a copycat recipe of this dessert I nearly fell off my chair I was so happy! Of course the next day I ran to the store and got the ingredients I didn't have on hand like the white chocolate chips, syrup, and brown sugar. I have to be honest and admit that my first batch of this was a disaster but that was because of a minor error with the butter I melted it to almost liquid form and really it should just be room temp softened.   I didn't give up though and since I had all the ingredients on hand I gave it a second chance and it was a success.  Well I gave my friend Eva the first try from the second batch all done up with vanilla ice cream, maple butter sauce, and walnuts. Her response was "OH MY GOD. You are making this for me for every birthday from now on" It's her favorite and no it's not her birthday and yep it's that good. It tastes just like an Applebee's blondie, and I really think the sauce is what makes it. I had to share this amazing recipe with the world!

Finished result...

*note I omitted the white chocolate chips for the blondie that the original recipe calls for and used them in the sauce instead which I think is really how it should be and I used a different recipe for the sauce that I saw in the comments over at the source.

Copycat Applebee's Maple Butter Blondie Adapted from THIS recipe


1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour (sifted)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (or more if desired)
1/3 cup butter (room temp softened NOT melted)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg (beaten)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Maple butter sauce:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 pkg cream cheese
1/4 cup whole milk
3/4 pkg. white chocolate chips
2 heaping tablespoons maple syrup (or pancake syrup with 2% maple syrup)



Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Add baking powder, baking soda, and salt to the already sifted flour. Then sift dry ingredients again. Add chopped nuts and mix well. Set aside.

Add brown sugar to melted butter and mix well, use a pastry blender or two forks, it is not necessary to use a mixer for this recipe. Then add the beaten egg and vanilla extract. Mix well with a spatula. Add flour mixture a little at a time, until mixed well.

Spread out dough in a 9-inch pan. Bake for 20 to 35 minutes. ( I know it's a large range but it really depends on what size and kind of pan you use, I used an 8 inch pan and it had to cook for almost 35 minutes). Use a toothpick or fork to test if it is cooked in the center. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream, walnuts and the hot maple butter sauce.

Maple Butter Sauce:

In a saucepan add the butter and cream cheese and cook over low to medium heat making sure it's melted and stirring occasionally. Then add the white chocolate chips and milk. Keep stirring (I found that it was easier using a whisk to keep it all incorporated and melted and not at the bottom of the pan. Lastly add the syrup. Keep whisking/stirring until it's all incorporated and melted.  Don't let the mixture sit there cause it can burn.  When it's all hot and bubbly and looks like a buttery sauce do a taste test (don't burn yourself!).

NOTE: this will yield a good amount of sauce and it's great cause this dessert is amazing smothered by the awesomeness that is this maple butter sauce!


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

busy bee I am

Pineapple coconut mini bundt cakes. My mom has a few of these 6 count baking pans and they are really really cute. Been making these everyday since last Friday. No I'm not crazy. I make them so that my mom can make some extra money at her job. She sells them to her co workers and they are a HIT! My mom says they are GONE by the time she starts her shift, gone in 5 minutes! Yes they are that good. Light, buttery, fluffy and yummy!

In other news, the bf and I are going on 1 year :) Had a really nice coffee date to celebrate.

Also I haven't baked some cupcakes in a while so maybe I should get on that!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

an early birthday present to myself

If you craft or sew then you most definitely know about "that pile." You know the one you call your "to do", "to finish", "to start" pile. Whatever it is you call it you most likely have a few if not many (like me) projects that you started but haven't completed. Also if you are like me then you also have the habit of starting many other projects even though when you look at "that pile" you wince because you know you shouldn't start a new project and instead work on an existing one. I'm not sure if this has anything to do with procrastination or just too much inspiration!

Yesterday I woke up from a much needed afternoon nap and decided that I wanted to make myself a new purse. Oh I've made lots and lots of bags but I hardly ever keep one. My birthday is coming up so I thought that it would be nice to make myself a bag with that awesome fabric I've been hoarding for almost a year. So I did and I finished it very very late last night. I have to say that this is my favorite favorite bag I've ever made, and it's all mine!

Now...I really should do something about "that pile."

Monday, August 1, 2011

Pinterest and other addicting things

Pinterest...ok so it's really not what I need but I love it! I can be on there for hours pinning away! Now if you don't know what in the world I'm talking about go HERE.(<----CLICK) It's really not something I can easily explain. I get a lot of inspiration and ideas for many things, I find funny pictures or quotes, craft ideas, food recipes and many other things. BUT it does take a lot of time out of my day I have to limit myself if not I'll be on there foreeevvveeer!

So speaking of other addicting things, who would have ever thought I would one day call a Kitchenaid mixer my best friend?! Or who would have ever thought I would be so anal about my recipe binders, box. More importantly who would have ever thought I'd actually HAVE a recipe binder???? That I would spend hours organizing, spend money on the cutest recipe cards and more hours reading all kinds of food blogs? Not me! Baking and cooking is like therapy for me now, I don't even mind doing the dishes afterwards and BELIEVE me washing dishes was something I would NEVER in a million years would have said I wouldn't mind doing. Now it's like part of the whole cooking and baking thing.

Procrastination is another addicting thing oh wait I think I actually inherited that and have had it with me since I was born. Yep, I'm a HUGE procrastinator. I've been working in our garage the last few days and my plan today was to finish the last part of it and be done with it. Well of course I got on Pinterest, and read my daily foodie blogs and of course I got the itch to cook/bake something. What about the garage you ask? There's always tomorrow! :) Here's what I made today:

Garlic Cheddar Biscuits (aka Red Lobster Cheddar Biscuits)
recipe from HERE


2 1/2 cups Bisquick baking mix
3/4 cup cold whole milk
4 tablespoons cold butter (1/2 stick)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1 heaping cup grated cheddar cheese

Brush on Top:

2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
pinch salt


1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

2. Combine Bisquick with cold butter in a medium bowl using a pastry cutter or a large fork. You don't want to mix too thoroughly. There should be small chunks of butter in there that are about the size of peas. Add cheddar cheese, milk, and 1/4 teaspoon garlic. Mix by hand until combined, but don't over mix.

3. Drop approximately 1/4 cup portions of the dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet using an ice cream scoop.

4. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes or until the tops of the biscuits begin to turn light brown.

5. When you take the biscuits out of the oven, melt 2 tablespoons butter in a small bowl in your microwave. Stir in the garlic powder and the dried parsley flakes. Use a brush to spread this garlic butter over the tops of all the biscuits. Use up all of the butter. Makes one dozen biscuits.

*NOTE: I didn't have garlic powder so I used garlic salt.

Man did these come out tasting like cheddar biscuit heaven! So easy and fast to make, these are easily whipped up because of the cold butter and milk you don't have to wait for the butter to get at room temp and to me that is great! I also added a little more cheese and butter than it stated cause yes you guessed it another addiction CHEESE!

I also made Chocolate Toffee Shortbread bars but they are chilling in the fridge, will cut, photograph and post tomorrow!

Goodnight :)

Friday, May 13, 2011

why did I wait to make this???

Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars

These are so gooood! I was browsing some food blogs and came upon this recipe and bookmarked it. I had bought all the ingredients but forgot about it until now. I love everything about it. The thick crust, the creamy cheesecake filling, the tartness of the chopped apples, and the sweetness and crunchiness of the topping. I really don't know if there will be any left for the BBQ tomorrow!

Recipe adapted from: The Girl Who Ate Everything Blog (this recipe is so decadent that I wan't surprised it was a Paula Deen recipe!)