Category Archives: cookies

Chocolate Espresso Cookies

CEC4Spring is just around the corner.  And honestly, I can’t wait.  We’ve had some snow flurries the past two weeks, and that put my kids in a tizzy.  Matthew was jumping around the house saying, “No school! No school!”  I think in his head, just a few drops of snow equals schools closing.  To be fair, this winter in the Pacific Northwest has been quite unusual, and every time it snowed, school was either cancelled or delayed.

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I think I told you about this crazy puppy we decided to adopt.  He has been fun, but, he is, well…a puppy.  Potty accidents have become a daily ritual, kid stuffies have been mauled, and my dining room furniture has turned into a chew toy.  And this is after having him sectioned off to just the kitchen.  My happy place is currently not so happy, as I can’t turn my back to him because I need to constantly self-direct.  Sigh…it’s okay.  This too shall pass and he’ll grow up, and the vigilance I am trying to do now should pay off down the road, right? Continue reading

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Linzer and Chocolate Sandwich Cookies

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It snowed an inch in Portland yesterday.  For those of you who live in areas where lots of snows is normal in the winter, one inch is probably a dusting to you; but out here, it shuts down the city.  And that is what it did yesterday afternoon, today, and most likely, tomorrow.  As a teacher, they ended school early yesterday, and cancelled school today and tomorrow.  It was nice having a “day off” today, but I am actually quite bummed that I don’t have school tomorrow.  December, as a teacher, is my second favorite month.  (And in case you’re wondering, September is my favorite.  I LOVE the beginning of the school year!)  All the winter festivities, merriment, excitement, and joy that accompanies this month is contagious.  And I just wanted one more day of it with the students before they go on their merry way to Christmas Break.

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Anyway, because today was a snow day, I thought, what better way to spend the afternoon than baking?  I was out of a few ingredients, so Eric and I trekked a mile to the grocery store with kids in tow.  They had so much fun tromping around and kicking up the snow, not one of them complained that it was too far (like they usually do when we take walks).  Grace even made up a song and sang it the whole way there–something about how she was snowboarding.

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The cookies I was making was to take in to co-workers tomorrow, but since I have no school, I guess I’ll have to eat them all myself.  Darn.  The sugar cookie recipe comes from the book Cookie Craft and if you don’t have the book, I highly suggest you do buy it.  It’s chalk-full of great advice on decorating sugar cookies, especially if you’re a newbie.  I use this recipe every time I make decorated sugar cookies, and I used them in these sandwich cookies too.

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Kitchen Sink Cookies

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The older my kids get, the more they notice things.  Here’s just a few things that have been asked of me of late:

“Why do I have to eat my vegetables before I can have dessert if Daddy doesn’t have to?”

“Mommy, go faster! You need to go faster than the speed lemon!” (limit is the word I think is meant here, but it’s too cute for me to correct)

“Are there dinosaurs in heaven? I’d really like to ride one.”

“Where do birds poop?”

“Can I take classes to be a better ninja?”

Now that summer is here, I feel a little less stressed.  I am not racing out the door to get the kids to school on time, frantically yelling, “Hurry, hurry! You’re going to be tardy!” (Which I have found every time I say that, in the hopes it motivates the kids to move faster, it inevitably causes Matthew to break down and cry. So I have learned to say, “Let’s see who can be the fastest to the car!” in the calmest voice I can muster.)  Nor am I feeling the urge to fill the calendar with play dates and activities.  Just letting the kids play in the yard, dig in the dirt, and ride their bikes in the cul-de-sac is enough for me.

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Baby Boy Sugar Cookies

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My younger sister had her baby boy a few weeks ago.  I haven’t been out of the “baby stage” for that long (my youngest is 3), but as I was holding this tiny baby, I had such a hard time picturing my kids when they were that young–even though their baby pictures are still hanging on the wall in the hallway, haha.  Time can be such a deceiver, you know?

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My daughter came with me to see this precious baby in the hospital, and it was so cute to see the care and dedication she had holding and caring for the baby.  Though, she did have a hard time understanding that you couldn’t put the hat over the whole face and that eyes were made for looking, not for poking.  (What is the fascination with toddlers wanting to poke eyes?)

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Last month I helped host a baby shower for her, and the only thing my sister requested was decorated sugar cookies.

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I decided to go with a light pastel palette, and found some cute inspiration on Pinterest. Ahh, gotta love Pinterest. A few of the cookies got dented in transit, but on the whole, they turned out well.  Continue reading

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

IMG_3344My family and I just came back from camping–in 90 degree weather.  In the Pacific Northwest, we usually see temperatures this high late in July or early in August, and it normally lasts about a week.  Well, the heat spell here started towards the end of June and lasted almost 3 weeks.  I can’t remember a 4th of July watching the fireworks in shorts and a t-shirt.  We are usually in jeans and a sweatshirt!  I was planning on making chocolate chip cookies to snack on while camping, (and use to sandwich a s’more or two) but I didn’t for two reasons–one, we have no air-conditioner in our house, and two, I had no way to keep the cookies from melting once we arrived at our campsite, and for those of you who tent/cabin camp, you know how valuable cooler space is!  In fact, we only had a campfire twice because it was so hot.  The last night of camping we started the fire early so our kids could have s’mores.  My two-and-a-half year-old daughter had never had s’mores before and I was excited for her to try it.  I thought she’d love it as much as my son.  Unfortunately, the only thing she liked was the chocolate squares, as you can see in this picture. Continue reading

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Grace’s Second Birthday

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My baby girl’s birthday was yesterday, and it was all I could do to not cry.  Why do the teenage years seem to drag on forever, but when life really begins, does it go so fast?? It seemed like only yesterday that I held this tiny girl in my arms, staring into her sweet, newborn face.  Anyway, enough sappy-sweet stuff.  We celebrated Grace’s big milestone by having a bird-themed birthday party.  Right now, she is really into birds of all kinds, so I thought it fitting.

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I made vanilla sugar cookies and hummingbird cupcakes, and had caramel apple cider and lemonade for drinks.  My husband told me that all previous birthday parties I made too much food and sent goodie bags of desserts home with guests, so I decided to agree with him this year and make it simple.

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I purchased these really cool apothecary jars from Amazon as an early Christmas present and loved putting candy in them.  My original plan was to have the malt-ball robin eggs and chocolate eggs wrapped in the shiny foil, but I think they are only out around Easter.  Gumballs, sixlets, and Jordan Almonds worked as a close second.   And the birch straws added a nice touch.  (It was also nice that I happened to have them in the pantry. Yeah to reusing!) Continue reading

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Easter Desserts

p1020282[1] So in early March, I came up with a list of Easter treats I wanted to make and share.  Tutorials on fondant Easter bunnies, little carrots, and cute eggs, all to go along with carrot cake cupcakes.  (And I don’t know why I like carrot cake, because I certainly do not like carrots.  In fact, they are the number one food on my list of Foods I Don’t Like, but there’s something about adding sugar that changes everything.)  I also wrote down ideas for decorated Easter sugar cookies and even a cake.  Last post I said that we are moving, and in fact we are.  We get our keys April 5th!  It’s our first house and we are so excited.  However, it was a last-minute decision to list our condo before we move, instead of after.  As a result, my mom came over last Friday and helped me pack almost everything in my kitchen, to get ready for the open house.  And with the boxes being moved to the garage were my ideas for Easter treats.  The only baking “things” in my kitchen are cookie sheets and a 9″x13″ pan.  It’s really sad. So what I’ve decided to do is give you a list of a few things I have made for Easter and some recipes from around the web that I think are fantastic.  They’re certainly ones I’ve wanted to make, and some are even on my Pinterest board.  Speaking of Pinterest, if you want to see more Easter or spring dessert ideas, check out the board titled SPRING.  Enjoy, and Happy Easter! xoxo

From the blog

Lemon Poppyseed Cake–Light and sweet, this is a nice cake with a raspberry filling. 081[1] Carrot Cake Cupcakes–These cupcakes are super moist and paired with a cream cheese frosting–yum! Continue reading

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