RSS Feed

Valentine’s Day 2023

This is going to be a short one.

Just like last year, the Super Bowl interfered with my Valentine’s Day baking!

Haha, I did get to make mini cupcakes:

And chocolate chip bars:

I also made some low fat strawberry cookies with white chocolate chips.

They were not pretty at all, but at least they were yummy!

And that was it. Can you believe it??

Don’t worry, I felt sad for about 5 minutes…

And then I started dreaming up some new desserts for spring– and totally forgot about the Valentine’s day desserts!

Now I’m off to bake. πŸ™‚

Christmas Desserts 2022

Posted on

Does anyone out there have great holiday time management tips they can share with me??

Last year, I said I would cut down on some things– and I did– but still, I ran out of time.

How does that happen??

Ok, so I did add a few new desserts this year:

These were Gingerbread cupcakes with mini gingerbread men cookies:

Chocolate chip cookies with sprinkles:

Snowball Cookies with mini chocolate chips:

Brown Sugar and Spice Cookies with cardamom glaze:

Maple Star cookies:

White Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies:

Coffee Cookies:

And Brownie Bites with chocolate drizzle:

And that was it for the new ones– but I didn’t remove any old ones from my list.

Which brought it to 26 different types of desserts, cookies, and chocolates.

Too much???

But I did cut down on the time for hot cocoa– I made cute little bags instead of full kits:

And I was done with all my goodies by Thanksgiving!!

So why was it that I still had no time and was stressing out during the last 2 weeks before Christmas?

I hadn’t even started shopping for presents or finished decorating!

One of my sons said it was because it takes so long to prep cookie plates for people:

That’s true, I made about 50 different plates, and it takes a while to take 21 kinds of cookies out from all the individual containers.

And I have to make a few plates at a time on different days because there’s no time to deliver them all at once.

What I can’t figure out is how to do it quicker!

Could that be the issue?

Or is it because I do a ridiculous amount of stuff?

I’ll figure it out someday!!

Maybe next year… as I always say. πŸ™‚

For now, here is some Chex Mix my family made together:

And that’s it for this year.

Hope you enjoyed your holidays!!

Halloween 2022

I spent most of October thinking of Halloween stuff, but ran out of time to do everything!

This happens every year.

But I did get to make some desserts!

Chocolate covered Halloween Oreos:

Brownie pizzas (I got a special request this year, so I made 2!):

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars:

And Pumpkin Cupcakes (these are always a hit!):

We also had some fun treats:

Just like last year, we threw candy in the neighborhood Halloween parade.

There were so many kids in costumes lining the streets!

Once again, I was super excited throwing candy out from the opposite side–and occasionally hit my son in the seat next to me, hit the truck door, and I may or may not have accidentally hit some of the parents who were waiting on the streets with their kids…

But no one cared– it was fun!!

Hope you had a great Halloween!

Valentine’s Day 2022

This year was way too stressful.

I was trying to make Valentine’s Day desserts but had to stop for Super Bowl desserts.

Why would the Super Bowl be the day before Valentine’s Day??

And since it’s on a Sunday, I didn’t have much time afterwards to do anything for Valentine’s Day.

I did make Italian Bakery Cookies:

My first time trying out White Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies:

Yum! I think I will make these for Christmas!

And my usual mini strawberry cake bites with chocolate chips (both white and semisweet this year):

In between all this craziness, I also had to bake birthday cupcakes and mousse bites.

I had such grand plans for Valentine’s Day, so I will just have to try harder next year!

And here are the Super Bowl dessert intruders:

Oh well, the Super Bowl better not get in the way next year!

At least everyone was happy. πŸ™‚

Christmas Desserts 2021

Posted on

I love to spread Christmas Cheer in the form of cookies, chocolates– and lately, also hot cocoa.

I make a few different types of cookies each time, to add to some of my usual stuff. This year, I added these:

Chocolate Covered Oreos
Mini Elf Bites (Shortbread with sprinkles)
White Chocolate Peppermint Snowflakes
Mixed Berry Thumbprint Cookies
Chocolate Almond Biscotti

And just like every other year, I ended up exhausted. And happy.

But this year, for the first time in many, many years– I realized I’m doing too much. I end up with no time to do more fun stuff with my kids– like watching Christmas movies, going to see Christmas lights, etc.

I made 46 hot cocoa boxes (these included 21 total teachers and bus drivers):

Ten chocolate boxes:

Ten sugar cookie boxes:

And about 35 plates of 15 types of cookies (including those above):

Don’t get me wrong– I love to do this. But I need to scale down a little to enjoy more of the Christmas season with my family.

Believe it or not, it was the hot cocoa boxes that took me the most time. I made all the little designs with my Silhouette, and it took forever (since I’m new to all that). Plus, I made stickers and designed the Christmas tree tag myself.

So, no hot cocoa boxes next time.

What else should I cut down on?

I’m not sure, because I’m already dreaming up more types of cookies!

Lol, we’ll see what happens when next November comes around.

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season, and Happy 2022!

Halloween 2021

This year felt a bit more normal, and it was so much fun!

Of course, I had to bake. I made some mini cupcakes:

Halloween sprinkle cookies:

And my annual brownie pizza:

Before trick-or-treating, we participated in a parade in our neighborhood.

We decorated my SUV with bats!

And I wore my new Halloween shirt!

I sat in the back and my plan was to take a bunch of pictures of my kids as they threw candy out of the window to trick or treaters. We had over 1,000 pieces of candy and hundreds of kids lined up in the streets!

And… I took 2 pictures. Yes, 2.

After those 2 in the first 30 seconds of the parade, I decided to throw a Twizzlers just for fun.

It was so much fun that I started throwing handfuls of candy– from the driver’s side of the SUV and past my son.

The kids cheered and it was so exciting!

So I kept throwing more and more…

Until my son told me to stop hitting him with candy.

Apparently not all my candy was making it out the window…

And my husband said we were going to run out before we even made it halfway. So I had to tone it down a bit (but I did keep throwing candy out for the entire parade. I couldn’t help myself). πŸ™‚

We also had fun Halloween food:

And I decorated a bit:

I hope everyone had a great Halloween this year!

Valentine’s Day 2021

I can’t believe I haven’t posted anything for Valentine’s Day for 3 years now!

This year wasn’t as hectic as usual because we are home anyway, but I still managed to run out of time!

I made these Linzer Cookies:

I also tried out these mini shortbread cookies and my kids liked them.

My husband wasn’t too sure if he liked them, but still kept eating them and called them “addictive.”

I think that’s a good sign!

And finally, I made these low fat cake bars:

But everyone was so stuffed from eating heart-shaped pizza (our annual tradition), that they could barely eat dessert. 😦

And to think that I had great plans to make even more!

Oh well, I’ll just have to make more desserts for the next holiday. (At least that’s what I always promise myself.)

As for last year, here’s what I made:

And here was 2019:

And now I’m caught up on Valentine’s Day!

Hope you had a great one. ❀

Christmas Desserts 2020

Well, this has been a crazy year to say the least.

But at least I was working from home, so no commute meant I had more time to make Christmas desserts to spread Christmas cheer!

I made a few new cookies/desserts this year!

Italian Bakery Cookies
Chocolate cookies with drizzled white chocolate (some had sprinkled candy cane bits).
Chocolate dipped marshmallows.

I had to make different kinds of bark (chocolate with M&Ms, chocolate with pretzels, and peppermint bark) for my family, because everyone likes something different!

Christmas Chex Mix
Trees with gold ornaments
And I got a new cute Christmas tree cookie cutter!

So those were all the new things I made– and it wasn’t too bad– no big mishaps.

I did manage to stab my thumb with a toothpick though. I actually had to pull it out of my thumb!

The lemon spritz cookies were insane– not only did I hurt my hand, but so did my oldest son! I even got a bruise on the palm of my hand.

Oh, and let’s not forget my non-baking injury: I managed to pull a leg muscle while sitting on the floor for hours wrapping presents! How does one do that??

Anyway, here are the other cookies I made:

I wanted to do something else to spread Christmas cheer, so I also made these little hot cocoa kits for friends, family and teachers.

They had cups, sleeves, hot cocoa mix, mini marshmallows, mini chocolate chips, and pretty straws!

And that’s it for this year!

I’m already thinking about what to do next year! πŸ™‚

Best wishes for a great 2021!

Halloween/ Fall 2020

This year was very different than usual, but I still tried to make it fun for the kids. I made these Halloween cupcakes:

There were no zombies running after us this year, and no trick-or-treating. 😦 But we made new memories! There was a Halloween parade in our neighborhood, and I did a Scavenger Hunt for my kids!

Halloween Sprinkle Cookies!

Of course I made my annual Halloween Brownie Pizza– but I wasn’t able to get orange Halloween oreos. So I decided to get dark chocolate ones instead– and I told my kids I got them as spooky “rotten pepperoni.”

And my kids asked me if they were really rotten. I was confused and said, “They’re oreos!” And they proceeded to ask me again if they were rotten. Blink blink.

So… let’s move along…

My youngest and I tried making some quick chocolate-covered pretzels, but it was a bit of a disaster. Still yummy though:

I also put some creepy, crawly spiders on our pizza! Ewww!

My kids made these awesome pumpkins:

And finally, I decorated the house a little to get into the Halloween spirit:

So I guess even though this year was very different, we still made it fun and special!

Here’s to making the best of everything! πŸ™‚

Christmas Desserts 2019

Posted on

Well, late again, but earlier than last year!Β 

Also, I didn’t have quite as many mishaps this year– so that’s an improvement.

My biggest ordeal was making Rice Krispies treats for my son’s class party.

We had a concert the night before, so I stayed up until 11pm making them.

I was soo tired!

But they’re pretty, aren’t they?

The infamous Rice Krispies Treats.

Anyway, I woke up and packed them up– and we got a call that schools were closed!

No, there was no snow.

No, there was no ice.

No, there was no frozen tundra.

You get the point.

There was the possibility of some freezing rain, which never came.

So… since there was no school, there was no party.

Brownie trees. As you can see, I had an obsession with drizzling chocolate this year!!

Not related to baking– but the school closing ruined everything!

I had to drive to work later and it took forever…

I had to wrap up the Rice Krispies Treats so they wouldn’t dry out (because it was a Friday)…

We had to reschedule the party for next week, when I was supposed to be working on cookies…

Pumpkin Cookies

Anyway, guess what?

I was going to take the Rice Krispies Treats in on Monday– and schools closed again!

I gave up.

Gingy!

But then my husband volunteered to deliver the treats on Tuesday.

They didn’t dry out, and the kids loved them.

So, yay!

Rainbow Cookies

Other than that, I only burned my fingers twice on baking sheets.

But I didn’t drop the cookies as I screamed and let go of the sheets!

Shortbread Cookies

And the last crazy thing that happened was when I baked some white chocolate peppermint cookies:

Very Pepperminty Cookies

I used 3 different silicone sheets to bake them– and the peppermint smell wouldn’t come out!

I soaked them, scrubbed them, used vinegar, etc.

So I had my husband just buy me more because I was running out of time!

And eventually the smell did come out…

Lace Florentines

Anyway, here are the rest of my desserts:

Soft Gingerbread Cookies

Italian Ricotta Cookies

Snickerdoodles

Chocolate Spritz Cookies

Lemon Spritz Cookies

Chocolate Cups with Peanuts

Low Fat Chocolate Chip Biscotti

Almond Biscotti

And believe it or not– I used 2 ovens for the first time ever!

It was so much quicker!

Maybe next year I’ll make even more.Β  πŸ™‚

 

Halloween/ Fall 2019

I’m super late again, but that’s my life!

Here are some brownie bites I made for my son’s school party:

I also made my brownie pizza (it’s a tradition now):

I feel like I have a recurring theme going on for Halloween.

Last year my son broke his collarbone at this time…Β 

And this year my other son broke his finger.

So running away from zombies at Fright Fest was a bit tricky.

He didn’t mind though.Β Β 

My 10-year-old, on the other hand, was freaking out.

Is it wrong that we laughed while one zombie chased him and his brother?Β  πŸ™‚

Good times!

Anyway, back to food.

I made pumpkin goodies:

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

And for school lunches, I drew these cute little faces on mandarin oranges:

For Halloween dinner, we made little pizzas with spiders on them!

I also drew a cute face on a pepper!

Apparently I was into drawing faces this year… they also went on fruit cups and bananas!

And finally, my kids’ pumpkins:

They went simple this year.

Oh, and by the way, my kids were fine at Fright Fest.

They got used to the zombies after a while and then it was just fun.

Well, except for the scary clowns that were apparently out to kill us…

But don’t worry, we all made it out alive!

Christmas Desserts 2018

I can’t believe I’m posting this in January, but better late than never.

One day right before I started baking Christmas cookies, my husband asked me to bake some brownie bites for work.

I don’t have pictures of the brownies in this post, but that day will beΒ this year’s Christmas List of Unfortunate Events (and I’m adding my Christmas dessert pictures).

Oh, and for those of you don’t know– my baking mishaps have become a trend!

Italian Ricotta Cookies

I was baking the brownie bites when one of my kids had a meltdown, so I went to talk to him.

Mini Cupcakes for a School Party

I didn’t hear the timer go off, and by the time I realized it, the brownies were overdone!

So I decided to make a second batch.

Crockpot Chocolate Peanut Cups

I stopped to talk in the middle of prepping, and then couldn’t remember if I had added one of the ingredients.

So I had to start again.

Soft Gingerbread Cookies

The third time was the charm– except the oven decided to go up to 387 degrees for no reason, and I freaked out.

But at least they were fine.

Peppermint Blossoms

Then I was trying to put red coloring in the frosting, but accidentally used maple extract instead.

Yes, I was stressed and the bottles looked similar.

And it wasn’t just one drop– I dumped a bunch in it.

Almond Biscotti

So I had to start again with the frosting.

There’s a pattern here…

Honey Coins

And then I needed some purple frosting.Β 

I used really nice purple food coloring, but it didn’t work.

I tried red and blue together, but it didn’t work.

No matter what I did, it came out grayish blue.

Lace Florentines

I finally settled for white frosting with sprinkles!

Mini Biscotti with Chocolate Chips

So for those of you who ever have stressful baking episodes, I can relate.

 

See you for the next episode of My List of Unfortunate Baking Events!

Here are the rest of my cookies:

Shortbread Cookies dipped in white chocolate

Rainbow Cookies

Snickerdoodles

Lemon Spritz Cookies

Chocolate Spritz Cookies

Oh, and one more thing, the Hot Cocoa station I set up:

Hope your holidays were great!

Halloween/Fall 2018

This year was different because my son broke his collarbone.

That meant no running away from zombies like other years...

Instead, I drove myself crazy baking for my husband’s office Halloween party.

He had asked me to bake pumpkin cupcakes on a weeknight (the horror!).

I got home really late from work and started baking.

This was a new recipe, and sadly only made a dozen cupcakes.

Pumpkin cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting.

My husband said that wouldn’t be enough, so I started making vanilla cupcakes, too.

But I only had enough cream cheese frosting for the pumpkin cupcakes, and I realized there was not one bit of powdered sugar in the house.

How does this happen??

Too late to run to the store, so I used a regular batch of buttercream I had made–instead of the cinnamon one I wanted to make.

In the meantime, my oven was acting crazy and stressing me out.

I kept running over to get lunches ready for the next day…

Eat a quick dinner in between baking…

Help kids with homework…

And so on…

Then I colored the buttercream frosting orange, piped the cupcakes, and by then I was about to run away screaming because I was so tired.

And that’s when it happened…

My husband told me his office wasn’t actually having a party at work after all– it was just people bringing in candy for Halloween.

So I threw the cupcakes at him.

OK, I didn’t really– but I wanted to!

But that’s ok, his office enjoyed the cupcakes.Β  πŸ™‚

The rest of Halloween was pretty hectic, but I got to bake some fall brownie bites for my son’s school party:

Brownie bites with fondant leaves.

We had spider personal pizzas and mummy hot dogs:

I also made pumpkin pancakes for the first time, and they were a hit!!

And of course, my kids’ pumpkins– didn’t they do a great job?

Valentine’s Day 2018

Another holiday, another chaotic day in my house…

All my holiday posts sound the same– never a dull moment.

I barely had time for desserts, but I did manage to make some.

These are sugar cookie bars.

Did I put too much frosting?Β  πŸ˜‰

My family liked them, so I was happy.

As for the craziness– my husband left on a business trip that night, my son had a meltdown, 2 of my kids were fighting about who got me one of my presents, and of course, the food got cold as I made everyone pose endlessly for pictures.Β  πŸ™‚

Isn’t that what typically happens at everyone’s house for Valentine’s Day??

Ok, it wasn’t all crazy.Β  We did have fun– Valentine’s Mad Libs and jokes, presents, heart-shaped pizza…

But I knew things would get crazy, so I planned a nice relaxing Valentine’s Day brunch the previous Sunday!

I think I’m onto something!!Β  πŸ™‚

No, I didn’t starve my family.Β  Aside from waffles and strawberries, we had pancakes, 2 types of bacon, sausages, and scrambled eggs.Β  But nothing else looked Valentiny enough.Β  πŸ™‚

 

 

Christmas Desserts 2017

I’m back, and going crazy as usual!

I feel like my Christmas posts should be called My Christmas List of Unfortunate Events.Β  πŸ™‚

So I thought last year’s Christmas baking/planning bad luck was a one-time thing, but apparently it’s meant to happen a lot!

Here is my list from this year (along with my desserts!):

Brownie Bites with chocolate drizzle

We moved into a new house this year, and I haven’t gotten used to the oven, it seems.

My lemon spritz cookies burnt. My chocolate chip cookies burnt. My snowflake cookies burnt. You get the idea.

Yeah, you would think I would’ve gotten the idea after the first two, right?

Well, at least the entire batch didn’t burn.

Still stressful though.

Shortbread Cookies dipped in white chocolate

Then I couldn’t find my favorite little snowflake cutter.Β Β 

I think my husband, son, and I spent over an hour looking.

Didn’t find it.

Italian Ricotta Cookies

The next day, I couldn’t find the black edible marker for my snowman cookies.

My husband ended up running to the store because I needed it for my son’s school party the next day.

Snowman Cookies

Then a few days later, I couldn’t find my piping tip to decorate the sugar cookies.Β Β 

That I did find– after a loooong time and some tears…

But as I was looking for it, guess what I found?

Yep, the cookie cutter and the marker I couldn’t find the other day!!

Ugh.

Chocolate Pretzel Caramel Bars

Oh, but it goes on…

My Christmas tree cookies turned splotchy, so I lost a half batch. (Anyone know why the glaze would get splotchy?)

Whimsical Trees

At another time, I knocked over the tall tub of sprinkles.

And they happened to be little round sprinkles, so they all bounced and rolled off the island.

Fun times!

White Chocolate Chip Cookies.Β  They don’t look very pretty, but they taste good!

My other son had a party and I spent the entire morning making his gingerbread men fondant toppers.

I don’t know why it took hours, but I needed to do so many other things!

Oh yeah, and I forgot to bring the cute gingerbread man cupcake carrier that I had packed to take to the party.

And during the party, I had to run out to move my truck because it was parked in the bus lane!

What craziness!

Gingerbread Man Mini Cupcakes. Do you see the one waving at you?Β  πŸ™‚

And let’s not forget the time the melted chocolate sprayed everywhere while I was trying to drizzle it on the brownies!

There’s probably more, but I’m too tired to remember because I’ve spent all day wrapping presents and packing cookie gifts.Β Β 

And I have a few more hours to go…

Snickerdoodles

So here are the cookies I make every year:

My favorite trees!

Little Snowflakes

Medium Snowflakes.Β  Made them a different color this year!

Big Snowflakes

Low Fat Chocolate Chip Biscotti

Almond Biscotti

Rainbow Cookies

Lace Florentines

Chocolate Spritz Cookies

Lemon Spritz Cookies

Hmmm, maybe now it doesn’t sound THAT bad.

But at the time I wanted to scream!

Well, it all worked out in the end, and I guess it was worth the heartache.Β  πŸ™‚

Happy Holidays!