Sunday, September 30, 2012

RECIPE: Pumpkin Snickerdoodles

My oldest is a HUGE Snickerdoodle fan. He has also been begging me to make pumpkin pie. So I decided to make a few pumpkin recipes and when I came across a pumpkin Snickerdoodle recipe, I knew I had to give them a try. I didn't alter the recipe at all (I know y'all are shocked but I actually followed a recipe)

Pumpkin Snickerdoodles

Yield: about 3 dozen cookies


1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated white sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
3/4 cup pure unsweetened pumpkin puree
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup granulated white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon allspice


1. Cream the butter until fluffy. Add sugars and pumpkin puree and beat well. Mix in egg and vanilla, scraping down sides of the bowl to incorporate all of the ingredients.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and ground cinnamon. Beat flour mixture into liquid mixture a little at a time just until incorporated.
3. Cover dough with plastic and chill at least an hour, or until dough becomes fairly firm.
4. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper (or spray with nonstick spray). Mix rolling sugar ingredients in a small bowl.
5. Remove cookie dough from refrigerator. Use a medium cookie scoop (1 1/2 Tablespoons) or a large spoon to scoop out dough and roll into balls. Roll the balls in the cinnamon sugar and make sure they're coated really well. Place 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Use a glass with a nice, flat bottom to dip in sugar and flatten the balls.
6. Bake at 350°F. for 10 to 14 minutes, or until they are slightly firm to the touch (mine were perfect at 12 minutes). Let cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes or so, then remove them to a wire rack to cool completely.


*Store in an airtight container. These cookies freeze well too. Place them in freezer zip bag and remove from freezer when the craving hits.

VERDICT: My middle son didn't like these but I have no clue why. My eldest LOVED these. They have such a light pumpkin flavor; it's not overwhelming, so it's just nice.

Monday, July 2, 2012

What to do on a 100+ degree day...

It's day 4 of 100+ degree temperatures. It's hot. It's humid. It's just yicky. Today is actually a cooler day with a high of 100. Yes, when 100 is the cooler temp, you know you're in trouble. Of course this is the weeks the kids are all home from school. Can't exactly play outside, so what's there to do?

Time for a movie treat! Polar Express & Iced Chocolate! Looking at snow while eating/drinking a frozen treat surely cools you off and makes you forget if you step outside, your skin will blister :)

All I did was take 6 packets of hot cocoa mix, about 1/4 cup of cocoa powder & added about 2 cups of boiling water to make it nice and smooth. Then I put it in the fridge to cool. I added about  pint of fat-free half & half and what ended up being another 1-2 cups of ice cold water. Mixed it up and poured it into my ice cream maker where I let it go for about 25 minutes. It filled it all the way to the top and when it was done, it was smooth, and EXACTLY what I was looking for! 

So now that we have happy bellies, we can watch the movie.

Remember: look out for CARIBOU!!!!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


2. Picture yourself at your child's age(s). Try to remember how you felt.

Me at 4: My passion & Love was my Cabbage Patch Kid, Jenny Bethany. My best friend was MaryAnne next door and we played, and played together for hours on end. 

Me at 6: I was loud and active. I did Brownies, and MaryAnne was still my bestie. I loved my CPS and Barbies but I was completely a tomboy and also liked to play with Derek across the street.

Me at 8: I had already learned about bullying and was semi-friendless because I was a 'nerd' and wore glasses. MaryAnne moved to SC and the closest friend I had became Derek. I read the entire set of World Book encyclopedias and yearbooks the summer I was 8. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


1. Ask yourself: " What is one thing that we can do together this month?"

Such a question gets more complicated with each additional child you have. Feel free to interpret this question as you wish; either "we" as in mom and all kids -or- "we" as in mom and each kid individually. 

My answer to today's challenge is make sure each kid can choose a game to play with mom. They set the rules as to if they want to allow their brothers to play with us but they don't have to. They can have just one-on-one mom game time if they desire. Once I announce this, I guarantee I will be playing games all day that same day (which might be today).


May is the month of Mom. 
It's the one month where there is one day to celebrate all we do as moms. One single, lonely day for others to show appreciation for what we put up with do.
I have a challenge for myself and for all you moms with a big to-do list. Somethings you may do already. Somethings make you think. Somethings may be a challenge.
Take the time to challenge yourself as a mother. 


It's May. May is CT's birthday. It's HT's birthday. My nephew's birthday. A bunch of the kids' friends' birthdays. There is the Mother's Day tea where i am hosting not 1 but 2 tables. Then Mother's Day. And End of preschool. End of the year for MOW (mom's group I am president of). Memorial Day of course.... Yeah. May is slightly packed. Add in the fact that the kids are tracked out for another 2 weeks and we have a bunch of appointments (dentists & doctors) made for while they're out. Oh and Boy Scout stuff (end of year coming soon). PHEW! And oddly, I've been on a cleaning streak where I am moving furniture and DEEP cleaning closets and bins and I'm insane!

I do have 2 plans. 1 I decided early last month and that is a special mom thing to do/blog every day for a month. The other was early this morning. I am giving up all HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) stuff for a month. That means the can of soda I opened will be drank by a child and I will stare at labels. I'm good at following through with things for the kids but when it comes to me, I fall to the wayside.

So follow my 'mothering" journey and watch for more posts when kids track back in.

Thursday, April 12, 2012


The Day before Easter (aka Holy Saturday), we went to Richland Creek Community Church for their annual Block Party & Egg Hunt. Afterward, we went strawberry picking at Hunt's Strawberry Farm here in Raleigh. We bought 2 large buckets which weighed a total of just under 20 pounds of fresh, succulent strawberries. The next day (Easter), we had brunch here... sweet, fluffy waffles topped with vanilla ice cream, the strawberries, and whipped cream. Simple and so yummy!

But now what to do with the rest of the berries? I had plans. 

Strawberry Muffins
Strawberry Sauce
Strawberry Quick Jam
Strawberries in Syrup (just chopped berries with some sugar to create a syrup)
Strawberry Fruit Leather


I picked up a packet of Ball's  RealFruit instant pectin to have on hand about a month ago and I found a use for it today. Following the recipe on the back, I made the quickest jam. I wasn't super pleased with the results in that it didn't gel up hardly but I think it will still work on those English muffins I bought. I might redo it but it's my fault for roughly chopping in the food processor instead of crushing it by hand. 

makes 16 ounces

1 packet of instant pectin
2 cups of chopped, crushed fruit (strawberries in this case)
2/3 cup sugar

  1. Stir sugar and pectin in a bowl
  2. Add fruit.
  3. Stir for 3 minutes.
  4. Ladle into jar(s) and let stand for 30 minutes.
  5. Enjoy now, refrigerate up to 3 weeks, or freeze up to a year.


This can be stored for about 3 weeks in the fridge, although it can be frozen up to a year. You can use it atop ice cream or pancakes/waffles. You can use it to drizzle over cheesecake, pound cake, or angel food cake. You can add it to some fresh lemonade for an amazing glass of strawberry lemonade. It's really a versatile things to have on hand. 

yields about 16 ounces

3 cups roughly chopped strawberries
1/3-1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Puree berries in a food processor.
  2. Pour berry slush into a medium saucepan.
  3. Stir in sugar and extracts.
  4. Bring to a boil/simmer over medium heat.
  5. Stirring constantly, simmer for another 5-8 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat & let cool.
  7. Pour into jar and refrigerate.

I love the plastic Ball Jars.
These are 16 ounces. Dry Erase markers work perfect & leave no marks.