Monday, January 19, 2009

DO NOT make this cake...

(Picture source:

You are on a diet and need an excuse to get off it.
You don't mind eating at least two pieces of this evil cake in one day.
You don't mind hiding in the kitchen with the lights turned off while eating your THIRD piece of cake.
You want to hide the remainder of your cake in the oven for fear of the rest of your family finding out that the cake you made has 3 missing pieces.

Here is the recipe, courtesy of Southern Plate. Don't say I didn't warn you.

Chocolate Velvet Cake

1 Box any flavor of chocolate cake mix (I use Duncan Hines)
1 Cup sour cream
1/2 Cup milk (I used half and half -- only because I was out of milk)
1/4 Cup oil
3 eggs
1-2 tsp butter flavoring (can substitute vanilla)
1 cup chocolate chips
2 heaping T cocoa powder, plus more for dusting pans

Preheat oven to 350.
Grease pans with shortening and dust with cocoa powder. Combine all ingredients into mixing bowl, except chocolate chips. Mix about two minutes, or until well blended. Mix in chocolate chips. Divide evenly among prepared pans and let cook until done, about 25 minutes. Let sit in pans for ten minutes before turning out to cool completely.

Cream Cheese Icing

8 ounces cream cheese
1 stick margarine or butter
3 1/2 to 4 cups confectioner’s sugar
1-2 tsp butter flavoring (can substitute Vanilla)

Soften cream cheese and margarine by leaving out on counter until it reaches room temperature. Combine the two in a mixing bowl and mix until well blended. Add sugar. Mix until smooth. Add flavoring and mix some more until well incorporated and icing is creamy. Ice cooled cake.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


I have met some amazing women on the wonderful world web. Debbie from From A Creative Heart is just one of them. She is one of the most talented, gracious, down-to-Earth women I know. Despite life's daily challenges, she still manages to hold her head high, recognize all of the blessings God has given her and still has the ability to laugh - even through tears. Her blog, if you haven't checked it out, totally encompasses the true spirit of who she is.

So it came to me as no surprise that Debbie was given this award and was delighted to receive it as well.

'This blog invests and believes in the PROXIMITY - nearness in space, time and relationships. These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in prizes for self-aggrandizement! Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propogated. Please give more attention to these writers!'"

Wow. Thanks Debbie. I luv ya hun :-)

So in the spirit of paying forward, I'll like to pass this award to:

  1. Tiffany from Making Room for Serendipity. Tiffany is one of my BFF from the internet. Her blog is filled with some of the most real, compassionate writings you will find on blogspot.
  2. Melissa from Heart and Home. Melissa is such a positive gal with a fabulous house, a great outlook on life and a very warm and inviting blog.
  3. Ruth Anne from Warm Pie, Happy Home. This blog encapsulates the word "cuteness".
  4. Sandy Toes from Shell In Your Pocket. A new blog that I have started to blogstalk LOL It's such a nice, warm place to visit - full of decorating, cooking and fun girl talk.
  5. And one of my favorites.. Chris from Just A Girl. Her blog is filled with inspiring home decor ideas, style and friendship. What else could you ask for?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Retro Tuesday

I've been listening to way too much digital music today as I catch up on some cleaning and have heard many songs from my youth. It's funny how one song can transport you back in time *smile*.

So here's my question... think ... think far back... back to your junior or senior year of high school. No excuses, I know you can do it. Humor me. Try. What music is playing inside of your head? Where are you?

Here... at the risk of embarrassment, I'll got first.

I'm at a rollerskating rink in Massachusetts, holding my first boyfriend's hand and sharing my first kiss during "couples skate". Yes Danny, I still think about you over twenty years later :-)

Friday, January 9, 2009


And now something a little different :-)

My DH emailed me a recipe (which he rarely does) so I thought I'd suprise him by making it for dinner tonight. While it is not your conventional pizza, it is complex, cheesy and incredibly wonderful. We will be making this pizza again!

Pizza a la Carbonara


1 10-ounce package refrigerated pizza dough
3 green onions, sliced
1/2 pound (10 to 11 slices) bacon, crisp-cooked, drained, and crumbled
Parmesan Pizza Sauce
1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
1-1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese (6 ounces)

1. Lightly grease an 11- to 13-inch pizza pan. Unroll pizza dough and transfer to greased pan, pressing dough out with your hands. Build up edges slightly. Prick generously with a fork. Bake in a 425 degree F oven for 7 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

2. Spread Parmesan Pizza Sauce over hot crust. Top with bacon, mushrooms, and green onions. Sprinkle with Monterey Jack cheese. Bake about 12 minutes more or until cheese melts and sauce is bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Makes 4 servings.
Posted by Picasa

Why I'm playing with only a half deck

Happy Friday everybody!

So ever wonder what happens when half of a deck of playing cards takes a spin with your colored laundry and sits overnight in your washer? You get one giant, pulpy mess. Good grief. Anybody know how to get fix pulp mashed all over your favorite pair of blue jeans and knit capris? I mean seriously... I pulled my jeans out of the laundry and they look like a pair of acid washed jeans from 90s.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Wacky Wednesday

So it's been my first week back in the wonderful, wacky world of Preschool. As usual, my own children have been less than enthusiastic to return to Elementary school but we're slowly making it over the hump.

January has already brought me many challenges but I'm feeling rather brain dead tonight. So instead of masterminding a more meaningful post, I decided to cook LOL.

Tonight, I made Asian Chicken Slaw. If you like this kinda thing, you definitely need to make it. It came out restaurant quality! The presentation of this salad is a sight to behold. I woulda/shoulda taken a picture of it but alas my camera would not cooperate. Bring it to your next party. You'll get lots of ooooos and awes :-)

Asian Chicken Slaw

1 (16-ounce) bag coleslaw mix
1 pound cooked chicken, shredded (I cubed it into small pieces)
2 cups broccoli florets, blanched
1 cup sugar snap peas, blanched
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 cup sliced scallions
1/2 cup chopped cashews (optional) ... I used rice noodles (similar to lo-mein noodles)

Dressing: (I doubled the sauce and served it on the side. Warning: this is one gianormous salad LOL so I would recommend serving the dressing on the side to prevent the remainder of the salad from wilting before consumption).
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons white vinegar
2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1. In a large bowl, toss together the coleslaw mix, chicken, broccoli, snap peas, red pepper, and scallions.

2. In a medium bowl, stir the soy sauce, vinegar, peanut butter, sugar, minced garlic, and grated ginger until well blended. Slowly whisk in the canola oil and sesame oil. Season the mixture with salt and pepper to taste.

3. Toss the salad with the dressing. Offer chopped cashews on the side as a crunchy topping, if you like. Makes 10 servings.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

I've been cooking again!

Okay, I'll confess... for some time, I had been going through a cooking funk. Those of you who know me personally, know this is not like me all. Along with the seemingly neverending holiday parties and school functions came many fast food meals, not-so-fast restaurant meals and quickie sandwich meals at home. It's a wonder I didn't gain 50-lbs LOL.

But thanks to great websites and blogs like Southern Plate and A Year of Crockpotting I am officially happy that I'm over my slump :-)

A new family favorite is Southern Plates' Butterfinger Cake. Now I will warn you. This cake is "to die for". It probably has a 5,000 calories per serving but it is so worth it. Make it for the next pot luck or family gathering. It'll make you the cooking Diva that I know you are. Here's the recipe:

Butterfinger Cake

1 box devil’s food cake mix
1 bottle caramel topping (I used Smuckers)
1 can Condensed milk
1 large tub cool whip
1 Butterfinger bar (Oddly I couldn't find a single "large bar" so I bought a 8-pack of mini butterfingers)

Prepare cake according to package directions. Immediately after removing cake from oven, poke several holes all over the top with a fork. Mix sweetened condensed milk and caramel together, pour over hot cake, spread it over the entire cake. Chill well. After cake has chilled completely, spread cool whip over the top and sprinkle crushed Butterfinger bar on top of cool whip.

Friday, January 2, 2009

My first post of 2009

Happy New Year Everybody!

I apologize for my absence. Here in the land of Preschool, school is about to start up again *sigh* which means for teachers we get to spend our last days of vacation doing "teachery" type of stuff like tweak our curriculum, generate newsletters and calendars... oh and did I mention adjust to our new puppy :-)

Here is the latest addition to our family. Her name is Chloe. Aren't they sweet?

Chloe is a wire haired daschund. We rescued her from the local animal control center. She's 2-years-old and a lovable sweet doggy :-) We feel very blessed to have her!

Now on to a completely different subject matter...

Thanks to my friend, Jen... I decided to sign up for Aloha Fridays. So my question to you today is "What is your favorite memory of 2008"?

My favorite memory was our first camping trip in our pop-up camper! By the grace of God, my DH's boss let us borrow his pop-up camper for Spring Break. We camped in Yogi Bear Campground. I caught 5 bass fish that trip.. DH, (the self-proclaimed almighty fisherman) caught ZIPPO LOL Little did I know that this single trip would hook our family... hook, line and sinker into the wonderful world of pop-up camping. We are now proud owners of the aforementioned camper and cherish every camping trip we have. It is truly a gift of family bonding time surrounded by God's blessing of natural beauty.

Wishing you and yours the very best in 2009.