The end of my stay in Pennsylvania was just what the doctor ordered: R&R, shopping, and time with the family. Oh, and all’s well that ends with sushi.
I even found the time to try a Pinterest-inspired snack that I’ve been wanting to make for months – Cinnamon Honey Fried Bananas. They’re simpler and even more delicious than they look! Definitely a new go-to sweet snack/dessert.
This morning I hopped on a train back to the city…where I may or may not be writing most of this post from
Gorgeous view, isn’t…it…?
The rest of my off-from-work day consisted of an allergy shot (glamorous, I know), errands, and packing for my mini vacation.
Speaking of which, the point of this post is to let you know that I’ll most likely be back to regular blogging on Monday. Lugging my huge laptop with me just seemed incredibly unappealing. Woof.
BUT I’m sure I’ll be doing my thing on Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram! So feel free to keep up with me if you so please Enjoy the rest of your week, babes.
Have you tried a recipe found via Pinterest? Was it a success?
Finally being roommates with my best friend: took about 2 years.
Having a best friend who I can be silly and weird with but will also challenge me when I need it most: priceless.
Making the last minute decision to go to a Friday night comedy show: $24 cover.
Laughing my butt off for two hours straight: priceless.
Having an adventure day from 3pm – midnight on Saturday: way more than I’d like to admit.
Having an adventure day from 3pm – midnight on Saturday: priceless.
Deciding to stay in and cook Sunday brunch: stopping at 3 different stores for the needed ingredients.
Taking the opportunity to whip together a killer new concoction: priceless.
(That would be shrimp sautéed in bacon grease, topped with goat cheese, served with homemade guacamole. Unreal.)
Tickets to the Mansions on the Moon show: $10 each.
Spending a Sunday night seeing one of my favorite bands (and discovering a new one): priceless.
Not knowing what the future holds: confusing and kind of scary.
Knowing that the victory has already been won: priceless.
What experience have you found to be priceless lately?
What was the highlight of your weekend?
The rest of the world may be starting season 6 of Mad Men, but this cable-less chick is just beginning season 5 now that it’s finally on Netflix. And that makes me happy.
My love for obnoxious jewelry is more acceptable than ever. That makes me happy too.
I’m going to Pennsylvania this weekend to celebrate Easter with my family. Yay!
While I’m there I’m going to take the opportunity to try a new recipe or two. Considering I haven’t done so in months, that makes me really, really happy.
(Healthy Cookie Dough Bites? Yes please!)
Summer is around the corner. And the swimsuits this season are extremely cute. Happy about that.
Last but not least, I cannot stop reading this quote! We have full freedom in Christ, and to say that that makes me happy is an understatement…
What’s making you happy today?
Best new recipe you’ve tried lately?
I have experienced a milestone.
That would be the first cake I’ve baked from scratch – ever! And not just any cake – Snickerdoodle Cake with Brown Sugar Cinnamon Buttercream, discovered a la Pinterest.
Sure, there are more important things I could have accomplished on my Sunday morning. But considering baking is one of my favorite hobbies…and I’ve done little to none of that over the past few months…and I’ve never mastered the basic art of baking a cake…
Well, it felt good.
I enjoyed my cake for breakfast with a green smoothie because, well, that’s what bloggers do.
I can’t tell you the next time I’ll bake a layer cake because – let’s be real – it’s quite the project (and considering how lopsided/messy mine turned out, clearly not that easy either). But I might as well take the opportunity to share some tips if you decide to take on this massive cake any time soon.
- my cakes had to bake 10 minutes longer than the recipe called for.
- I read in the comments that some people didn’t like the grittiness of the brown sugar in the buttercream, so I dissolved mine for a few minutes in about 1/4 cup water before adding to the mix. It seemed to work!
- I also read that others’ frosting turned really brown, so I kept the cinnamon in the buttercream at 1 teaspoon rather than 2.
- Lastly, I also read that others thought the buttercream was too sweet, so I used about 6-7 cups confectioner’s sugar rather than 8-9.
…See guys? I’m like, totally a cake expert now.
Have you ever baked a (layer) cake from scratch? Any suggestions for my next cake endeavor?
Who says the cookie baking has to end after Christmas? I say keep ‘em coming.
(Looks like I’m not the only baker in the house – my sister made these Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies!)
Good old fashioned hellos. Who knows what could happen? Keep ‘em coming.
Selfies get a bad rep. So you take a picture of yourself that you like? Who cares? Own it. And I want to see it. Keep ‘em coming.
My best friend Jessi always has good advice for me. Sometimes it’s from her own experience, and other times it’s just pointing me to what God has to say. Text messages like this? Keep ‘em coming.
Oversized sweaters with fun prints and patterns for the winter? Definitely keep ‘em coming.
What do you love lately that you want to keep it coming?
And what are your thoughts on selfies??
Hello from Pennsylvania!
Last year I didn’t go home for the holidays until Christmas Eve and…well, I didn’t love it. To me, one of the best parts of Christmas is the days leading up to it! So this year I made it a point to come home a few days early to enjoy those favorite pre-Christmas things with my family.
The most obvious of which – braving the mall for some last minute Christmas shopping. My dad and I went out early Saturday morning to finish shopping for my mom and sister. Despite wanting to get sucked into the fascination that is the “as seen on TV” section…
…we somehow managed to get the job done in less than 90 minutes. That’s a win, my friends.
Later in the day my mom and I headed to a different mall for a bit more shopping and pedicures (you know…to get our feet back in shape from all that shopping).
Also to get “in shape” for Christmas – this monster salad has been my go-to meal. In the mix: romaine, spinach, shredded cabbage, broccoli sprouts, avocado, goat cheese, and mango peach salsa. Yeah.
But let’s not forget to leave room for the essentials. Godiva chocolate and truffles, anyone?
Before moving onto the very important pre-Christmas cooking and gift wrapping, I’m making it a point to squeeze in the crucial watch-as-much-TV-as-possible…ing. My current obsessions:
Hey there, boys.
I must say, though, that my favorite pre-Christmas thing is just relaxing around the house. Although I love New York during the holidays, there’s nothing quite like a cozy suburban home with candles lit and a decorated tree.
(How cute is that new owl ornament? My mom got all trendy this year )
What is your favorite thing about the days leading up to Christmas?
It’s been a long time since I posted one of my Cake Batter recipes.
Too long, in fact.
Luckily for all of us, the holidays are a perfect reason to remake some of our favorite treats with a festive twist. So here’s a re-post of my favorite Cake Batter Fudge recipe…only this time, Christmas-ized.
- 2 cups yellow cake mix (I used Betty Crocker) *
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 stick butter
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup red and/or green sprinkles (either add into mix or just top with)
- optional mix-ins: white chocolate chips, M&Ms, etc!
directions: Place cake mix and powdered sugar in a large bowl and combine. Pour in the milk, top with stick of butter, and microwave for 2 minutes. Immediately begin mixing everything together – the butter may not be fully melted but will as you continue mixing. Lastly, mix in the sprinkles, then pour fudge into a greased round cake pan (I topped mine with some extra sprinkles). Chill for at least 2 hours before cutting. Store in the refrigerator.
* I’ve had some people say that their fudge didn’t harden well. The only thing I can think of that might make a difference is the brand of cake mix you use. A few commenters have also noted that Funfetti mix DOES NOT harden!
Although nothing can really beat good old traditional holiday cookies, Cake Batter Fudge is definitely a delicious (and simple) alternative until the baking begins…
What’s your favorite holiday treat?
I’ve been on Pinterest for a while now, but not until recently have I become obsessed with it.
OBSESSED, I tell you.
Lately I haven’t had as much time as I’d like to experiment with trying new recipes (as I’ve mentioned recently, I’ve pretty much been living on frozen meals), but I have had the time to sneak over to Pinterest and swoon over the amazing Thanksgiving recipe ideas that people come up with.
Although I can’t 100% vouch for any of these, I can say that they look incredible, and worth checking out if you’re wanting to switch up your traditional Thanksgiving spread this year.
For an impressive starter: pear slices topped with cream cheese, cranberries, and pistachios.
Sweet Potato and Honey Dinner Rolls look ideal for soaking up gravy.
Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes. The ingredients are the same as your traditional mashed potatoes, but according to Jessica, the flavor is anything but.
For a pasta dish, you could swap macaroni and cheese for Sweet Potato & Caramelized Onion Stuffed Shells or Pumpkin Ravioli with Hazelnut Brown Butter Sauce and Balsamic Drizzle.
You can’t have Thanksgiving without the turkey, but who says it has to be a whole turkey? This Roasted Rosemary Orange Turkey Breast looks like a delicious alternative.
Dressing or stuffing? Stuffing or dressing? Either way, if it includes apples and sausage, it’s probably incredible.
Although it’s impossible to get sick of good old pumpkin pie, Pumpkin Dream Cake and Pumpkin Spice Truffles seem like quite the tasty new way to get your pumpkin fix.
And for the day after…Turkey Cranberry Monte Cristo.
I don’t know about you, but I just went from looking forward to Thanksgiving to counting down the minutes…
What’s your favorite Thanksgiving dish? Do you prefer the traditional foods or updated versions?
Cake Batter Blondies can be made without using egg! Simply follow the original recipe, omit the egg, and double the amount of milk. Boom.
It’s officially cold enough to wear layers upon layers from day into night.
(coat – Jack. romper, beanie, and socks – H&M. boots – Necessary Clothing)
Despite being quite the dramatic one…Jessi lived
One of my favorite restaurants, Delicatessen, is serving a full brunch menu just a day after power being restored. Eggs Benedict + avocado…don’t mind if I do.
Last but most certainly not least…
Almost all power has been restored in NYC!!!!!
Although there’s still a lot to be done to return “back to normal,” the city has come together and united like it always does. New Yorkers are helping pick each other back up, and it’s an inspiring thing to see and be a part of.
What’s some good news you’ve gotten lately?
DO: take advantage of the colder weather to rock your favorite boots.
DON’T: have them be these boots.
DO: save money by making your own oat flour. Oats + food processor, easy enough!
DON’T: use that oat flour as a replacement for regular flour in Classic Pumpkin Bread.
(it was okay, but not as good as regular ol’ all purpose).
DON’T: go to an overly packed sports bar full of sweaty guys on a Saturday.
DO: admit that you don’t really like sports, and go somewhere where you can actually sit and enjoy your company. And grub, of course.
What’s a do/don’t you’ve learned recently?