Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Survival Guide

Last week, the King was gone for three.  LONG.  days.  My mother-in-law was here to help one of those days and then stayed onto see the King when he arrived home.  Hence, my blogging hiatus.  

I did what any girl would to survive the absence and turned to baked goods, particularly cookies, to power through my short stint with single parenthood. 
Thanks to the cookies...and I guess the Princess' stellar behavior, we all survived. 
"It's not easy being good mom.  Don't I deserve a cookie?"

The recipe is very close to my Peppermint Bark Puddin' Cookies, but they have an Easter themed twist.  Cadbury mini eggs.  Much like peppermint bark, peanut butter cup Christmas trees, and candy corn, mini eggs are another one of my seasonal addictions.  

I usually buy a few small pouches of them to help pace myself through the season.  But this year, with reckless abandon, and probably an empty stomach at the grocery store, a regular sized bag made it's way into my cart.  And then the stress and worry of being home alone caring for an infant without any baked goods for 3 days turned them into cookies.  

And it was a good choice.

Anyone out there have any seasonal addictions?  

Mini Egg Easter Cookies


      1 cup butter, room temperature
      3/4 cup granulated sugar
      3/4 cup light brown sugar
      1 pkg (5.1 oz) Vanilla Instant Pudding mix
      1 Tbsp vanilla
      2 eggs
      2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
      3/4 cup old fashioned oats
      1 tsp baking soda
      1 tsp salt
      1 large bag of mini eggs

1.          Preheat oven to 375°.
2.         In a stand mixer cream together butter, pudding mix and both sugars. 
3.         Add in eggs and vanilla and mix until combined. 
4.         Turn mixer to low and slowly add in flour, baking soda, salt and oats.
5.         Stir until combined.
6.         Stir in mini eggs.
7.         Drop by tablespoon onto baking sheet and bake for 8-9 minutes. Let cool on baking sheet for 3 minutes before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.
***Recipe adapted from Cookies and Cups Oreo Pudding cookies recipe. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Gotcha Focaccia!

Last week, we had our routine quarterly appointment with the exterminator.  Our house is surrounded by trees, and sadly, crickets love our basement. Therefore, I look forward to these appointments 4 times a year!  

Wish our exterminator resembled Uncle Jesse circa Full House Season 2.  Mullet and all.

The hard part is that the Princess cannot be around for FOUR long hours after he sprays for bugs.  Keeping her out of the house through feeding and naptimes is pure torture.  Torture.  Especially if she doesn't nap.  So when the King offered to take her to work for the morning, I was all about it!

But alas, the King taking the Princess away meant a few blessed hours to myself.  At home.  For the first time since the Princess has been born.  I got to shower without a baby or a monitor.  I got to eat breakfast, sip my coffee slowly and bask in the glory of a quiet house!  It was wonderful.

Especially when she came home and did this for 2+ hours:
As much as I love being the Princess' favorite person alive and playing making a fool of myself everyday, extended naptimes rule.  Clearly, she had a rough morning at the office.  When is take your children to work day again?  Soon?

Because the King had so kindly taken on the added responsibility of bringing itty bitty to the office with him for the morning, I thought I sort of owed him.  

So I made him some delicious focaccia with roasted garlic and kalamata olives.  Thankfully, kalamata olives taste like pickles.  It's all other olives that utterly horrify me.

Speaking of things I hate (olives, mayonnaise, and Michael Buble), I truly hate how many times you have to let focaccia rise.  Thankfully, my mixer did all the dough work and the rising thing wasn't too horrible.  Just twice.
And the final product was pretty worth it.  I knew we would eat most of it, so being the genius that I am, I served it with a salad:
The fact that I served it with salad also made it okay for me to bake cookies after dinner.  Logical, right?  More to come on the cookie portion of the meal!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Egg in your avocado...

A couple weeks ago, I thought it would be genius to have the Princess try some mashed avocado.  This seemed like a great plan because then I would know exactly what my kid was eating.  It wasn't from a jar.  And it was super low maintenance.  Just mash it with a fork.

Well, it turned out that I was a little eager in the solid foods department and she wanted to stick to some basics for a few more weeks.  She has just started digging her oat cereal 2 and a half weeks later.  She'll learn.

I would much rather have some delicious mashed avocado.  They came in a pack of 3 so I had a whole lot of avocado to work with.  I looked up some recipes and came up with this:
Turns out baked avocado egg is delicious!  Top with bacon and it is even better!

Try it out:  Egg in your avocado

Thursday, March 7, 2013


Ok, now that "Snowquester" has come and gone and provided us a nice little snow day for my family to stay home together and relax, Winter can get outta here!  I am so ready for some Spring.  Bring on the sunshine, flowers, and fresh air!  
I tried to reflect this in my bright and sunny Spring mantel that I will probably leave up until Summer...or perhaps if I get lazy, until Fall.  My favorite item up there is my $4 owl.  Lucky that owls don't belong to any particular season, he will get his fair share of use!

I put way too much thought into this and am having way too much fun decorating this thing every season.  I clearly need a creative outlet.  Any suggestions?

The Princess would also like some more Spring sunshine so she has an excuse to further accessorize.  Please and thank you.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Pretzels + Chicken = Yum.

So I'm pretty sure that science says that any salty snack food that has an additional salty powder coating  is highly addictive and the nutrition label should read for one serving.  Because that's pretty much how it is going to go down.  

Last week, I bought Snyder's of Hanover pretzel pieces that were hot wing and buttermilk ranch flavored in the SAME bag. That bag probably should have been labeled crack.  

As soon as I had my first serving...aka half the bag, I realized something needed to be done.  I needed to use as many of these pretzel pieces as possible in some sort of meal and stat to prevent inhaling them in one sitting.  

This recipe for pretzel coated chicken had been lingering around my pinterest food board for some time and was begging to be made.  Done and done.

And it turned out delicious!  I may have definitely double dipped the chicken in the sauce and pretzels to ensure an additional crack coating on my chicken.  I served it on a bed of baby arugula/spinach aside some roasted potatoes.

For anyone doubting the combination of hot wing/ranch with honey mustard, it all worked out just fine and my taste buds thanked me.

Salty snacks are serious business.