Saturday, March 27, 2010

hello again!

Well hello family and friends!
This blog has been on hiatus for a while now, but now I hope to be posting a little more regularly...sharing our adventures with 3 kiddos, fun recipes and craft ideas, cool pictures, and whatever else strikes my fancy!
Just a short little post for now, but I also wanted to give a plug for Garvan Woodland Gardens near Hot Springs...the source of these gorgeous pictures I just added to the blog. We visited with Nana and cousins, Bailey & Shelby, this last week. The camellias are still out (my fav-or-ite!). The tulips and daffodils are gorgeous! The Evans Children's Garden is just perfect for a little adventure for the older kids. It was a little big for Little T and Big L. Hope you can make it out for a visit.

Friday, January 30, 2009

A New Favorite Muffin

I make a lot of muffins around here. They are quick and easy and they boys love them. Particularly anything with chocolate chips in them. They are a nice change from our usual oatmeal or eggos.
I was a little over zealous in purchasing canned pumpkin during the holidays and was searching for a way to use it up. I came across the original recipe on and tweaked it a little according to our tastes and the reviews. They were really yummy and not too bad for you. Enjoy.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
adapted from allrecipes (

3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 and spray 12 muffin cups with nonstick cooking spray.
Mix sugar, oil, and eggs. Add pumpkin and water. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt. Add wet ingredients and stir in chocolate chips.
Divide evenly into muffin cups (about 2/3 full). Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
Let cool in pan for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack.
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Some Random Pictures from January

Grandmom and Granddad gave the boys this artist's easel for Christmas. They love to scribble on the chalkboard. Ty has only tried to draw on the wall far!
Landon's recent quirk is smelling everything. I caught him sniffing my boot. If something smells floral or sweet, he says "it smells like a strawberry." I don't think he made that comment about my boot.
Ty and his favorite book. He loves the Polar Bear, Brown Bear, and Panda Bear books from Eric Carle.
Ty sneaking a lick of icing at Grandmom's house. Landon would always be a little sneaky about getting licks or he would ask. Not Ty...he just goes for it.
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An Outside Day

A few weeks ago, we had one of those 65 degree January days. A perfect opportunity to let the boys outside to play. They raced dump trucks and drug out every ball we have.
When they play outside, it's really easy to see their personality differences. Landon is plays hard, but is cautious and doesn't like to get dirty. Ty just goes for it...crawling in the grass, muddy pants, dirty face.
Our future soccer star. If you ask Landon what sport he wants to play, the answer is soccer. If you ask him why, he just says "I love it".
Ty's favorite game is to throw or hit any ball down the driveway (which is a pretty good hill) and run to get it. He'll do it over and over again.
What does Mommy do? Kick back, watch, and enjoy...wishing I had that much energy!
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Beary Good Snack

Here are the pictures of the "bear" tuiles that I attempted to make. They're a little abstract and could be interpreted as a turtle too :) A nicer way to say that I'm not much of a pastry artist.
The boys are much more into bears so that's what they were!
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January Daring Bakers Challenge: Tuiles

Oops...I'm just a tad late on posting this challenge. Due to last minute change of plans, I didn't get to finish my tuiles until this morning.

This month's challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from The Chocolate Book by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux.

I chose to make the plain Tuiles from Angelique's recipe. I did make the batter a day ahead of time and it worked just fine. The cookies tasted great...just like a fresh fortune cookie (which would be a fun idea to do in the future with this recipe). I made a couple of simple bowls by forming them over the bottom of a muffin tin. I also played around and made a couple of snakes and bears for the boys (I'll post these a little later after snack time). I can see this simple cookie being a future favorite for baking with the boys. There are a lot of creative options you can explore.

We were also asked to accompany our tuiles with something light and fruity. I found a recipe for Simple Strawberry Mousse from Cooking Light (see below for link) and actually had all of the ingredients on hand. I did use frozen sliced strawberries in place of fresh. This time of year a much better option the the "fresh" ones available at our stores. The recipe calls for freezing the mousse. I was in a bit of a hurry, so I just scooped some of the soft mousse in the cup for the picture, but froze the rest. It does taste pretty yummy. A little taste of spring on this wintry Arkansas day.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Opening Gifts...

Landon helped pick out the goodies in Ty's stocking. It was a little hard to get him to understand the "giving is better than receiving" concept this year, but he did enjoy seeing that Ty liked his gifts.

Ty had to help Landon out too.

Landon has this gift unwrapping thing down.
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