D.Y.I. Valentine’s Day Bags

Hi y’all,

I love Valentine’s day, it is so much fun to look forward to giving goodies to loved ones. This year I have an adorable 22 month old grandson, Johnny who likes to do crafts with me.
We had fun making gift bags for family members.


We made 12 bags and Johnny loved placing the stickers.


I bought cat and dog valentines, adding Little Debbie Valentines cakes, and treats.
You can see our goody bags are not perfect but made with love by a toddler and his Nana.
I am baking strawberry cupcakes with white icing on Friday.
I hope this project inspires you to have fun with your itty bitty ones.
Happy Valentine’s Day! 🙂


Recipe: Chocolate Pots De Creme With Sea Salt

Christmas chocolate gnosh
Chocolate Pots De Crème With Sea Salt

5 egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 1/4 cup whole milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
Chop chocolate into small pieces
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Coarse sea salt

1) In a small bowl, whisk together yolks and sugar.
In a medium sauce pan over medium low heat, combine cream, milk, and salt mixture.
Stir constantly until the temperature registers that it will coat the back of a wooden spoon.
Don’t overcook or you will scramble the eggs.

2) Immediately pour hot mixture over chocolate in a bowl.
Cover with plastic wrap and let stand 3 minutes. Uncover, add vanilla, then stir to completely combine.

3) Pour into 8 four ounce ramekins and let cool.
When room temperature, cover each with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.

4) Before serving sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt.

Caloric information:
Calories 277 per serving
25 grams fat
12 grams salt
21 carbs

Recipes: Zucchini Bread and Banana Nut Bread

Holiday Menu Includes Sweet Breads this Thanksgiving at our home!!!
Zucchini Bread
Original recipe makes 2 – 9×5 inch loaves
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream
2 cups shredded zucchini
1 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease two 9×5 inch loaf pans.
In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, beat together the sugar and oil. Stir in the eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition, then stir in the vanilla. Blend this mixture into the flour mixture, alternately with the sour cream; stir just to combine. Fold in the zucchini and nuts; mixing just enough to evenly combine. Pour batter into prepared pans.
Bake in preheated oven for 80 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.

Banana Nut Bread

Original recipe makes 1 9×5-inch loaf Change Servings
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9×5-inch loaf pan. Whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt together in a bowl.
Beat the egg in a mixing bowl. Whisk in the mayonnaise, bananas, and vanilla extract until evenly mixed. Stir in the flour mixture until no dry lumps remain. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan.
Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes.

Cookie Recipe: Soft and Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies



Peanut butter cookies
Soft and Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies 

Original recipe makes 3 dozen Change Servings
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1 cup butter, softened
3 eggs
1 cup creamy peanut butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).
In a medium bowl, combine flour, soda, and salt. Mix well with a wire whisk set aside.
In a large bowl, blend sugars, using an electric mixer set at medium speed. Add butter, and mix to form a grainy paste, scraping the sides of the bowl. Add eggs, peanut butter and vanilla and mix at medium speed until light and fluffy.
Add the flour mixture and mix at low speed until just mixed.
Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto an ungreased cookie sheet. With a wet fork gently press cookies in a crisscrossed pattern. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until slightly brown along edges.

Tip: I plan to make these and add a chocolate kiss right before they are completely cooled.

Recipe: Chocolate Pecan Pie & Apple Pie Baking Tip


Chocolate Pecan Pie
1 (9-inch) unbaked pie shell
2 cups pecan halves
3 large eggs, beaten
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup dark corn syrup
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons good-quality bourbon
3 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Cover bottom of pie crust with pecans.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and melted butter. Add the corn syrup, sugar, bourbon and the chopped chocolate. Stir until all ingredients are combined. Pour mixture into the pie shell over the pecans and place on a heavy-duty cookie sheet.
Bake for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F and continue to bake for an additional 25 minutes or until pie is set.
Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

Apple Pie baking tip:
Your apple pie crust to puffy? I can tell you how to fix that right now.
If your apple pie has a gap between crust and filling each piece you cut is not uniform.
I don’t know about you but I want a thick, apple filled piece of pie every time.
First slice your apples as close to exact pieces as you can.
Layer the apple slices staggered but snugly on top of each other in the pie shell.
Placing the apple slices tightly will minimize air pockets that produce uneven pies.
Use 3 pounds of apple per pie. Cut three large slits across the top of the pie crust.
Let the pie cool completely before cutting the pieces.
Lastly ENJOY your thick piece of apple pie!

Drink Recipe: Low Calorie Raspberry Banana Smoothie

Raspberry Banana Smoothie

1 medium banana, peeled and sliced
3/4 cup fresh raspberries
4 packets Splenda
3/4 cup 1% low fat milk
1/2 tsp.pure vanilla extract

Place banana in freezer for 10 minutes or until slightly firm.
Process all ingredients in a blender until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides.
Serve immediately.
Serving size 8 fl.oz.
Calories are 120