Wednesday, December 7, 2016


photo via Brown Eyed Baker
Hi guys - I am keeping this post short and sweet...heavy on the sweet;).  But I have really been wanting to share this yummy recipe!  Our oldest constantly asks me to buy Party Cakes from the store.  For those that do not know about Party Cakes - they are a Hostess (I think??) packaged, processed out the wazoo mini cupcakes that come 4 in a package.  I mean they are so good, and obviously Michael loves them.  But - I am a big advocate of not eating processed, packaged food whenever we can avoid it.  It's so frustrating to me when I am grocery shopping to read the labels on items and see all the crap that is in there - I don't understand how people can feel good about making some of these products that mostly aren't even real food - it's just a bunch of chemicals wrapped up in some pretty packages with a ton of sugar mixed in to make it taste good.  Do you guys read labels when grocery shopping?  Here is my PSA for the year:  if you don't - you should start.  It is eye opening.

So Michael and I have been on the hunt to make our own party cakes.  We have made a few versions, but this one has been our favorite so far.  I grabbed a mini cupcake pan from Target that makes 24 mini cakes at once.  I made this entire recipe and it made A LOT of mini cupcakes;) lol.  I think we made three pans of the 24 (I also squeezed in a few normal sized ones in the hopes of speeding up the process a much batter!).... I have a ton of party cakes sitting on my counter right now.

Ours didn't turn out as pretty looking as hoped, but man were they delicious!  We did not put any icing on these - in an effort to keep them as similar to the Party Cakes as possible.  I bagged these up after they cooled off, and are great after school snacks, or desserts for school lunches during the week.

After making these a few times, my next goal is to try and make our own sprinkles.  While I know these still have a bunch of sugar and butter in them - I at least feel better knowing EXACTLY what is going into these....and I also like using organic flour and sugar versions.  I also like to sometimes use almond milk versus the whole milk this recipe calls for (I never have whole milk around the house - so I will use whatever milk I have in the fridge).  I am also going to work on reducing the sugar amount I put into the batter and see how they turn out.

Here is the link to the recipe - enjoy!

What do your kids ask for from the grocery that you always feel guilty about buying?!  What do you do when they constantly ask you for it...??!!  Please share!


Monday, December 5, 2016


Do you all have annual Christmas traditions you do every year with your families?  We obviously had some when we were younger, but I wouldn't say we have too many right now...probably want to get some started  We have tried making gingerbread houses with Michael before, Gwen was too young when we had done it in the past.  However, I would love for one of our traditions each year to be to have each of the kids make their own house, listen to Christmas music, and just hang at our house for the evening with each other.  I think it would be fun to remember back each year how our houses got better and better as we learned the best ways to do them...and different candies to use, etc. Plus - any excuse for us adults to sit at home for a night in and drink wine is a win-win at this household.

This weekend Mike was out of town - and we were looking for something to do Saturday night, so the kids and I stopped by Target and grabbed some gingerbread house kits to work on.  When we got there - I noticed they were on sale for $9 and using the Cartwheel app - I was able to get them an extra $1 off;) - it's the little things, right?

Who knew these things were so dang difficult to put together?!  I mean seriously - wtf?!  The kids didn't mind too much, and they still got in to the decorating, but sheesh... I could not for the life of me get those walls to stay together.  I'm pretty sure Gwen ate about 45 pieces of candy and put about 5 pieces on her house.

The sugar high started to get to her after like piece #30....;).

It was still fun and definitely got me in the music spirit (we even had the Christmas play list going in the back ground;)).  However - next  year I am busting out my hot glue gun!  

Please tell me someone has tips on how to successfully put together one of these?!


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