Category: tasty treats

on your heart (day 18)

Ever wake up in the middle of the night and instantly someone comes to your mind, but you don’t understand why? 

I believe that God has placed that person on your heart

What do I mean? 

I feel that it is a call to prayer. 

To action. 

God has placed that person on your heart, so that you can remember them in prayer. 

Maybe even send them a card in the mail, (or email or text). 

Or bake some cookies for them. 

Just to let them know YOU were thinking about THEM. 

Maybe they need encouraged. 

Maybe they are going through something and they feel all alone. 

They need to know they are loved

They need to feel God’s love…..maybe THROUGH YOU!  

I encourage you, the next time someone comes to your mind, out-of-the-blue, 

stop & whisper a prayer for them. 

You don’t need to know the details.  God already knows. 

Today I baked some cookies.  Snickerdoodles.  (My hubby’s favorite.) 

Plus God had placed someone on my heart that was having some physical problems, so I thought that maybe some homemade cookies would help sweeten their day. 

Here’s the yummy recipe for Betty Crocker Snickerdoodles

This is the recipe, plus my timing for using baking stones instead of cookie sheets: 


  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose/unbleached flour
  • 2 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon


  1. Heat oven to 400′.
  2. Mix 1 1/2 cups sugar, the butter, shortening and eggs in a large bowl. 
  3. Stir in flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. 
  4. Shape dough into 1 1/4inch balls. 
  5. Mix 1/4 cup sugar and the cinnamon. 
  6. Roll balls in cinnamon-sugar mixture.  Place 2 inches apart on baking stone (or ungreased cookie sheet). 
  7. First batch (on cold stone) bake 12 minutes, removing from oven and allow them to rest on stone for another 3-4  minutes.  Then move to wire rack.
  8. Remaining batches (on warm stone) bake 10 minutes, removing from oven and allow them to rest on stone for another 2 minutes.  Then move to wire rack. 
  9. (Using cookie sheet, bake 8-10 minutes or until set.  Then move to wire rack.)

Yields: approx. 48 cookies 

*These cookies are peanut-free. 

Above is an altered clipboard that I made.  It can be used to display a favorite photo or a t0-do list.
I love wrapping homemade goodies in pretty cellophane.  I also made this tag to match the card & clipboard. 

Below is the finished “Warm Winter Wishes” set. 

Only 18 days till 40! 

my mocha biscotti

As we know, I love coffee.  I recently have discovered homemade biscotti.  Last year, my sister-in-law surprised me with her homemade chocolate biscotti…it was AMAZING!!!!  Never before had I tasted a biscotti that I liked, but hers was out-of-this-world. So, there was hope.  Store bought biscotti is nothing compared to homemade. 

This Christmas, my mom made biscotti for the celebration.  Her recipe was delicious also.  You can find it here, Chocolate Chip Biscotti, (she omitted the hazelnuts, because of food allergies).  I admit, I am not a ‘fruit with my chocolate’ kind of person, but this biscotti was really good. 

Tonight, I wanted to make some biscotti for a friend’s birthday, so I checked out the Betty Crocker website and found this one for Mocha Biscotti

I altered it a bit, here is my version: 

Ingredients for Biscotti :

  • 2 tbsp. instant espresso or coffee crystals, (I used 2 packs of Starbucks Instant Brew.  One Colombian flavored & the other Italian Roast…that was all I had on hand…it could easily use 1 or 2 more.)
  • 2 tsp. hot water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips, slightly chopped (The recipe called for 1/2 cup semisweet bakingchocolate.  To tell you the truth, I didn’t even notice that it said baking chocolate until right now, as I type the recipe…lol…that’s why I used chips.)
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted & chopped (I omitted these because of food allergies.  Instead, I substituted about 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips…there can never be too much chocolate!)
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Ingredients for Chocolate Drizzle :

  • 3 oz. semisweet baking chocolate, (I used some semisweet chocolate chips)
  • 1/2 tsp. shortening

Directions :

  1. Heat oven to 350′.
  2. Dissolve coffee crystals in hot water.  In a large bowl, beat sugar, butter, vanilla, eggs and coffee with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon.  Stir in all remaining Biscotti ingredients.
  3. Shape half of dough at a time into rectangle, 10 x 3 inches, on ungreased cookie sheet.  (I always use my Pampered Chef baking stones.  I also covered it with parchment paper this time.)  Bake about 30 minutes or until center is firm to the touch.  Cool on stone 15 minutes.
  4. Cut crosswise into 1/2inch slices.  Place slices, cut sides down, on stone.  Bake about 15 minutes, turning once, until crisp and edges are light brown.  Immediately remove from stone to wire rack.  Cool completely.  (Because I’m impatient, I proceeded to the chocolate drizzle as soon as they were moved to the wire rack.)
  5. In 1-quart saucepan, heat all Chocolate Drizzle ingredients over low heat, stirring occasionally, until melted and smooth.  Drizzle chocolate over one side of each biscotti.  Let stand until chocolate is set.

*Recipe claims to make 3 1/2 dozen.  I must slice them extremely large because my recipe only produced about 16.  I could slice them in half, but I’m giving them as a gift and I want them to be large and pretty. 

*This recipe was made nut-free by omitting the almonds and checking all ingredients for allergens. 

*Nutritional values are on the Betty Crocker website. 

I haven’t been on the treadmill since my bout with the stomach flu, but chilly weather makes me want to bake, so I better get back on it! 

chocolate soynut butter cookies

Found a yummy recipe online for “Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies”, but changed it up a bit, so that it would be peanut-free. 

Here’s the recipe:


  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup creamy soynut butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup canola oil (I used vegetable oil)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 large egg
  • 12 oz. all-purpose flour (about 2 2/3 cups)
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2/3 cup semisweet chocolate minichips (I used over 1 cup–1/2 a bag– of regular semisweet chips)


  1. Preheat oven to 350′.
  2. Combine first 8 ingredients in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth.
  3. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl; stir with a whisk.
  4. Add flour mixture to soynut butter mixture, stirring just until combined.
  5. Stir in chocolate chips.
  6. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart on baking sheets (I used a Pampered Chef Medium scoop and Pampered Chef baking stones).
  7. Bake at 350′ for 12 minutes or until golden.  (When using stones, I baked for 14 minutes, then removed from oven and allowed them to sit on the stone for at least 5 minutes before moving them to a wire rack.)
  8. Cool on wire rack.

Yield: approx. 3 dozen

Nutritional info based on using peanut butter:  Calories 128; Fat 4.5g; Cholesterol 6mg; Carbohydrate 20.5 g; Sodium 106mg; Protein 2.3g; Fiber 0.6g

my chocolate chip cookie recipe

(Wednesday evening) I was baking some cookies for a Christmas party that is today. 

I didn’t have any holiday M&M’s, so I went with my no-fail chocolate chip cookie recipe. 

I love these cookies!! 

Here’s the recipe:

Chewy Jumbo Chocolate Chip Cookies (adapted from an online recipe)


  • 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cake flour OR 1 cup minus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour ( I use the all-purpose flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, softened (I usually don’t use real butter, however this time I doubled the recipe and used half real butter and half margarine sticks)
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups to 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (ok, this is where I go crazy… the more chocolate the better is my theory, so I usually use at least 2 cups of semi-sweet chips PLUS 2 cups of either M&M’s or chocolate chunks, or mini-chips or mint chips…whatever chocolate chips I have on hand)


  1. Preheat oven to 375′.
  2. Combine all-purpose flour, cake flour, baking powder & baking soda in medium bowl.
  3. Combine butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar in large mixer bowl. Beat until creamy.
  4. Add eggs and vanilla extract.  Beat until well mixed.  Gradually beat in flour mixture.
  5. Stir in morsels.
  6. I use the Pampered Chef large scoop to place dough on Pampered Chef Baking Stone, a few inches apart….(my PC stones have never failed me….my cookies never burn…although, you can use an ungreased cookie sheet if you want!)
  7. Bake for 16 minutes on a stone.  Remove from oven and leave them on the stone for 5 minutes, before moving them to the cooling rack.  Cookies will look lgolden brown on the outside and ooey gooey in the middle.  Cookies will continue to bake slightly when left on the stone.  (If you are using a sheet, 10-14 minutes are recommended or until golden brown and cooling for 2 minutes before moving to rack.)

Yield: 1 batch using large scoop = approx 35 cookies

*My recipe is peanut-free.  *Make sure to check your chocolate chip ingredients if this is a concern for you. 

Do you enjoy holiday baking?  I do.  Chilly weather makes me want to bake.  Maybe I should move my treadmill into the kitchen so that as I am eating my cookies I can walk off the calories instantly! lol


my weekend thru food

whew! whatta weekend. 

i spent one night/2 days in Columbus with my mom & sister for a “girls’ weekend”. 

by evening, i ended up with the stomach flu.  yikes.  stomach flu at a hotel?  not fun. 

anyways.  lots of good food was eaten (& since i haven’t felt like uploading my camera pix, these phone pix will have to do for now….lol) 

above was my choice of cheesecake when we ate at The Cheesecake Factory. 

this was called chocolate tuxedo cream cheesecake.  it was good.  i wouldn’t call it fabulous.  there were so many choices to chose from…i just picked and hoped for the best.   

also at The Cheesecake Factory, before i ate the cheesecake, i ate this salad. 

it was calleda b.l.t. salad.  not the best.

after a night of the stomach flu, i enjoyed a few sips of mint tea from starbucks.  i’ve never ordered tea from starbucks.  i’m usually a coffee girl.  but feeling under the weather, this tea was quite good. 
i’m a huge fan of soup.  later we went to Red Robin, (which i love), and i ordered this french onion soup with bread. 


i love french onion soup, (so does my hubby), and this one was fantastic!  (even on a weak stomach) 

so, for now, that’s all i have to sum up my weekend away.  lots of good food.  hope your weekend was a tasty treat too!!! 

waiting for zucchini bread

ohhh yum. 

i love this time of year! 

fresh zucchini from the garden, zucchini bread baking in the oven, 

and chewy hardly able to wait another minute for it! 

chewy LOVES zucchini bread.  he’s so funny. 

he knows the cupboard where i keep my bread knife, he knows it all….one sound and he comes running for the kitchen. 

this bread recipe is fab.u.lous!  my BF lisa gave me the recipe a few years ago….it never fails!!!  it’s delicous!  (& the recipe is peanut-free, so it is safe for those with an allergy to nuts) 

i thought i blogged the recipe last year, but i couldn’t find the post….if you would like the recipe, leave a comment.   

as you can see below, it’s time to snack on some bread!! 

enjoy your day! 


yes, i know it’s summer

tried a new crock-pot recipe today. 

Vegetable Beef Soup (Makes 8 servings)  taken from “Fix-it and Forget-it Lightly cookbook”

(yes, i know it’s summer….maybe it isn’t the season for soup….but it’s good and low-calorie!!!)

great because you can stick it in the pot and forget about it all day, while you enjoy the sunshine! 


  • 1 lb. extra-lean ground beef
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 lb. potatoes, pared & chopped  (i only used 3-4 potatoes)
  • 1 medium-sized onion, chopped (i only used about 1/5 of the onion)
  • 2 (4 oz.) cans mushroom pieces, drained
  • 1 envelope dry low-sodium onion soup mix
  • 16 oz. jar low-sodium chunky salsa (don’t let the salsa scare you…my son hates salsa, but liked the soup)
  • 2 medium-sized carrots, chopped (i used more than that)


  1. Brown ground beef in non-stick skillet.  (i prefer to do it in the microwave and then use a slotted spoon to transfer the meat into the crock-pot so that the grease drains)
  2. Combine all ingredients in slow cooker, (crock-pot).
  3. Cover.  Cook on low 8 hours or on high 4.

Nutrition Facts per serving (1/8):

  • 200 calories, 5 g total fat, 2 g sat. fat, 0g trans fat, 20 mg cholesterol, 1230mg sodium, 22g carbs, 3g fiber, 5g sugar, 14g protein, 80% vitamin A, 10% vitamin C, 4% calcium, 10% iron.

This recipe is peanut-free.

Give it a try!!!!

let’s catch-up

well.  let’s catch up. 

it’s now summer break. 

above is one of my favorite summer spots.  our patio swing.  i love it!  i really enjoy swinging while enjoying a good book. 

i love spending time outside in the sun.  yesterday, i decided to take the camera outside and snap a few pix. 

(still having fun messing around on….love how easy it is to edit photos on there!) 

also made some monkey munch.  yum-o!  as blogged here we LOVE monkey munch! 

therefore, i don’t make it tooooo often because we easily eat wayyy too much of it! 

it’s soooo yummy!  & addictive.  can’t just eat one handful. 

(this version is also peanut-free) 

we store it in a XL 2.5 gallon ziploc.  reaching in, you get covered in powdered sugar!  (you would think that would deter us, but no!) 
the extra large pieces that stick together are the first to go….oh yum!!!
below, nick and i picked up our lunch today…current low-cal favorite, subway & starbucks.  

he, of course, dodged out of the picture as i snapped it. 


that would be his laptop.  in the car.  no, this wasn’t a roadtrip. 

simply a long line at the drive-thru, so he pulled out his laptop. 

isn’t that normal for a teen in 2009? 

well, i am REALLY wanting to scrapbook.  lots of ideas bouncing around in my head. 

feeling very creative.  just need to do it. 

maybe i will post some layouts tomorrow! 

hope you are enjoying your summer so far! 

thanks for stopping by!

ice cream cookie dessert

here’s an easy dessert recipe that i made on mother’s day!

Ice Cream Cookie Dessert


  • 1 (18 oz) package of Oreos, crushed & divided
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream, softened
  • 1 (16 oz) jar of hot fudge ice cream topping, warmed
  • 1 (8 oz) carton of frozen whipped topping, thawed


  1. In a bowl, combine 3 3/4 cups cookie crumbs and butter. 
  2. Press into a greased 13 x 9 x 2 dish. 
  3. Spread with ice cream; cover and freeze until set.
  4. Drizzle fudge topping over ice cream; cover and freeze until set.
  5. Spread with whipped topping; sprinkle with remaining cookie crumbs.
  6. Cover and freeze for 2 hours or until firm.
  7. Remove from the freezer 10 minutes before serving.

Yield: 12 servings

been busy baking

saw this pic online…funny…i used to have this exact cookbook when i was young. 

i’ve been busy baking cookies for our youth retreat this weekend. 

last night was monster M&M/chocolate chip cookies and today was oatmeal raisin with sugar glaze icing. 


i love to bake, but i don’t like having the temptation of yummy sweet calories sitting around… 

tomorrow will be brownie bars & chocolate chip bars…  

the next day with be blueberry muffins & cinnamon streusel muffins! 

*of course i also enjoy the baking because this makes sure that all items are peanut-free for nick. 

no worries.  that’s a +plus+ 

now go bake something sweet for your family!  : )