A Sprinkle of Love

Today is a special day, it is my mother in law Mary’s birthday! For months I have known that I would be making something for her and featuring it on my blog but I have had such a hard time deciding what to make for her special day. A few months ago she gave me a challenge to make that I was originally going to make, but I changed my mind, I will make it before the end of the year, I promise!

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Mary is one of my biggest supporters, not only did she make my fabulous banner you see at the top of this page, as a fellow blogger it has been great to bounce ideas off her, we even have a few projects in the works to be featured on here so stay tuned! This weekend is her class reunion and it really got me thinking because, ten years ago I was invited to the family picnic part of the reunion since I was her son’s girlfriend of almost a year. We have almost eleven years of memories and I am so grateful that Mary welcomed me into her family with open arms from day one.

Well this past weekend when I was in my baking mood I texted my trusty taster (Mary) asking what cookies I should make, when she replied with frosted sugar cookies, I knew I had a winner for her birthday, especially since I had just some across and intriguing recipe on Pinterest that morning. When I posted my puppy chow post I asked what your favorite treats were as a kid Mary mentioned sugar cookies and how she would make them with her mom at Christmas, so I wanted to make them a little different than her fantastic Christmas sugar cookies, seriously they are one of my two favorite sugar cookies, the other is my co-worker Sue’s, my mouth is watering just thinking of all these cookies! Well now I have a third favorite to add to theirs!

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For the cookies you will need butter, sugar, egg, vanilla, flour, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt.

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Beat together butter and sugar on low until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.

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Beat in egg and vanilla.

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Gently fold in flour, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt.

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Scoop out dough with medium scoop and refrigerate at least 2 hours. (I let it sit overnight in an air tight container in the refrigerator.)

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When you are ready to bake preheat oven to 350 and put cookies from the fridge on baking sheets.

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Bake 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely on baking sheets before removing.

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While the cookies are baking it is time to make the frosting! You will need butter, powdered sugar, vanilla and heavy cream. Oh and don’t forget the sprinkles!

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Beat butter on low speed until light and fluffy.

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Gently mix in powdered sugar and vanilla.

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Pour a tablespoon of heavy cream at a time, beating until you reach desired consistency. (I used all three tablespoons.)

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Now the fun part! Frost the cookies as desired.

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Cover with sprinkles.

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Share! (They are also delicious unfrosted!)

Frosted Sugar Cookies

For the Cookie:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

In a mixing bowl add butter and sugar, beat on low until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Beat in egg and vanilla, scrape sides of the bowl with a spatula. Gently fold in flour, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt. Scoop out dough using a medium scoop and refrigerate at least two hours, I recommend overnight. (Do Not skip refrigerating the dough, your cookies will not turn out the same!)

When ready to bake preheat oven to 350, place chilled dough onto baking sheets and bake 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely on baking sheets before removing.

For the Frosting

  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2-3 tablespoons heavy cream

Add butter to mixing bowl, beat on low until light and fluffy. Gently mix in powdered sugar and vanilla. Add heavy cream a tablespoon at a time to reach desired consistency.

Spread about a tablespoon of frosting over each cookie and decorate with colorful sprinkles.

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Look at how yummy those look!

Happy Birthday to the best mother in law!

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Positivity

When I first started this blog I promised myself I would never write a post that wasn’t positive or a post that I wouldn’t enjoy reading if I found it on someone else’s blog. Well I will tell you this past week I was not in a very positive mood, I even typed up posts but could not bring myself to post them, they were just negative and I didn’t even enjoy reading over them, why would I expect you to enjoy reading them? They were not really me, they were just a reflection of the negativity I was feeling last week. However the good news of my hiatus from the blog means I have several recipes to share over the next posts!

Recently I started following a blog called National Day Calendar every day has multiple National events, for instance October 2 was National Name Your Car Day and October 3 was World Smile Day. Well according to this blog today is National Do Something Nice Day, when I read that I loved the idea so much, I try to do nice things for others all the time but an actual day for it…that sounds like a fabulous idea! Well I woke up a little early this morning (not before Zach though) and made Zach’s favorite blueberry muffins…no not from scratch, it was the Jiffy brand in the little box, it is Zach’s favorite. Originally I wanted to get up early and make them and wake him up with them, but somebody was up extra early this morning. He was still happy I made him muffins and he thoroughly enjoyed them!

Since I was making a conscious effort to do something nice today it made me notice other nice things, it was fun, I noticed Zach took the time when he was rearranging some things in our living room to stop and play with our kitty because she was curious about what he was doing, she very much enjoyed play time. Not only did it make Toews happy, but it made me happy watching the two of them and Zach seemed to enjoy teasing her.

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This week had to start on the right foot so I wanted to make some cookies! I know I have mentioned it before but chocolate chip cookies always make me feel better, and baking always relaxing me so I decided to try a different recipe for chocolate chips cookies. Not to worry faithful readers, I am not abandoning my chocolate chip cookie recipe I posted back in July, I just wanted to try a different way of making my favorite cookie. Zach has given me the task of making a giant chocolate chip cookie for a future blog, with surprisingly specific requests, I will keep you guys updated!

Bisquick Cookies 1

For this recipe you will need butter, brown sugar, vanilla, egg, Bisquick and chocolate chips (I used a combination of milk chocolate and mini chocolate chips).

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In a large bowl mix softened butter, sugar, vanilla and egg.

(I was too impatient to wait for my butter to soften so I used my trick to grate the butter to speed up the softening, if you are wondering why it look a little different, but it works!)

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Stir in Bisquick and chocolate chips.

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Drop by rounded spoonful onto ungreased baking sheet, I used my cookie scoop. Flatten slightly, I just used my fingers (don’t worry when I bake I am constantly washing my hands).

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Bake 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheet to cooling rack.

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Enjoy!

Bisquick Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 2 3/4 cup Bisquick baking mix
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375.

In a large bowl combine butter, sugar, vanilla and egg. Stir in Bisquick and chocolate chips. Drop by rounded spoonful onto ungreased baking sheet, flatten slightly. Bake 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheet to cooling rack.

I definitely ate like six while they were cooling. These were so simple, who would have thought I could find an even easier recipe for chocolate chip cookies?

So now my question for you, What was something nice you did today?

How I Met Jason Segel

Oh did we have an awesome day today! Awhile back Mary sent me an email about Jason Segel, or as we like to call him Marshall from How I Met Your Mother, saying that she had bought us tickets to a signing for the release of his book, Nightmares, through Anderson’s Bookshop (Click on the link for more info and events). A few years back Mary and I went to and event through Anderson’s for Chelsea Handler, back when her book Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang came out. It was so exciting to meet her, I loved her show Chelsea Lately that recently ended. It’s funny because we are pretty much complete opposites but I just find her so funny.

Anyway, back to Jason Segel, when you buy the tickets you also buy a copy of the book so we had two books to get signed. When Mary told us she had bought us tickets we immediately knew we were going to get one book signed to Zach and I, and one for his parents since they were so generous to buy us tickets to meet Marshall! (I am going to apologize for the quality of the photos now, cell phone cameras are not always the best)

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We drove to Downers Grove and easily found the Tivoli Theatre and got in the long line that was already forming to see Jason Segel. Zach and I loved How I Met Your Mother, we even started watching the entire series again from the beginning on Netflix after the show ended in March, we just missed it so much! He was so entertaining, he described himself as a big kid and he totally was. It was nice to see he was excited to be there and he was so genuine. His reactions to the audience and the questions were perfect, he shared so many stories and by the time he was done I felt like I knew him. It is always nice when you meet a celebrity to find out you like them even more after hearing them talk.

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Zach asked Jason so sign the book for us with “Beercules” as a reference to How I Met Your Mother. When I got the book signed for Zach’s parents he asked if I was Mary, so then I had to explain that it was a “gift” for my In laws, he said it was always a good idea to get some bonus points with in laws. It was fun to talk to him one on one even if it was just for a minute.

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During his talk, Jason said something that really stuck with me, I even pulled my phone out to write it down so I would remember. You’re right where you’re supposed to be at all times. Some moments are clearer than others, but you are always right where you belong. Sometimes that is definitely easier to remember than others but I am going to make an effort to keep that with me everyday.

Now were watching the Bears game hoping for a win, a win is definitely where I belong…hint hint Cutler.

In case you were wondering this is how my kitty spends her time while I am blogging. That is her spot, we are not allowed to sit there, and that is also her blanket…now.

Toews

It’s the Little Things

Have you ever noticed that the little things people do for you stick in your memory? A few weeks ago Zach walked in on me standing in my closet with a flashlight looking at my clothes because the light bulb burned out awhile ago and I kept forgetting to ask him to replace it, usually our bedroom is light enough in the morning that I don’t need a light. He took one look at me and turned around, I was in hurry trying to get ready so I didn’t think a whole lot about it. Minutes later he comes back with a fresh bulb and replaced it for me in about 30 seconds, and I hadn’t even asked. I keep finding myself thinking about that and loving him more just or doing something so small for me, it took all of a few minutes of his day but it made such an impact on me.

More and more I find myself saying it’s the little things that make you happy, whether it is having a file on the closest end of the shelf at work, hitting all green lights on a drive, your mother in law making your favorite lunch for you when she knows you are having a long day, or having the girl at the café you go into from time to time remember your order before you can even finish saying hi. Don’t get me wrong when people do big things for me I appreciate it so much, but I find myself continuing to think about the little things because most of them happen without a whole lot of thought, they just happen. Zach didn’t spend days deciding to replace my light bulb, he spent seconds, but it totally made my day.

Speaking of little things, I know it’s kinda strange to say that food makes me happy, but on Monday Zach wanted to go to the store and get some French bread for sandwiches, we were wandering around deciding what we each wanted on our sandwiches. Zach was all about the lunch meat, but since I have found that lunch meat can trigger my migraines I stay away from it. I have been a fan of grilled cheese sandwiches forever, I mean bread and cheese, it doesn’t get too much better than that. Thinking along those lines I remembered of something I saw on Pinterest awhile ago, cucumber grilled cheese sandwiches, hold on stay with me, I know it sounds weird. BEST SANDWICH EVER. For real, I took one bite and looked at Zach and said OMG this is amazing. I seem to know a lot of people who grew cucumbers in their gardens this year and oh they have been delicious, so the garden fresh cucumber may have helped this sandwich be so fantastic, but believe me I will be trying it again and again eventually I will run out of home grown cucumbers. If I had any urge to garden I would be trying my hand at cucumbers next year, however my thumb is definitely not green.

Surprise, guess what I am sharing tonight? You guessed it! My new favorite sandwich! I have already made it again since Monday, I just can’t get enough! The two types of cheese, the crunchy cucumbers the toasted bread, I am hooked.

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For my grilled cheese I used French bread, cream cheese, Havarti cheese, dill weed and cucumbers. (I also used butter for the outside of the bread but didn’t think to include it in my photo)

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I buttered the outside of both pieces of bread, spread cream cheese on the inside of the slices, sprinkled a little dill weed on the cream cheese, covered it with half a slice of cheese on each side and placed the cucumbers in-between. I put the sandwiches on my Panini press for a few minutes just to toast the bread a little.

Honestly these are more guidelines than anything, you could add about anything you might like and I bet it would be delicious. I don’t necessarily recommend trying this with American cheese, I don’t think it would have the same effect. Let me know what you guys try on your grilled cheese.

Lazy Night

The title tells you so much about my day doesn’t it? I was not feeling making much of anything, so I decided to let someone else take care of that, but more on that later.

I am so excited to share some blog related news with you guys! The blog has a new home: koalafiedwife.com! Everything has been transferred and if you visit the koalafiedcl.wordpress.com it should automatically forward you here. This was a big decision for me to purchase this domain name and I am so excited about it! Please let me know if you experience any problems and I will try to fix them.

After work today I was talking with one of my coworkers, I was telling her how I had no desire to make anything tonight even though I had a great idea for this post. So stay turned this weekend for that idea! Anyway she suggested that I blog about how sometimes you just don’t feel like cooking and I thought that was a fantastic idea. Thanks Mary Kay!

I had the day off on Monday and ended up at the dentist because of some issues that were causing me problems all last week, don’t worry all is good and my dentist was optimistic. I don’t know about you guys but I am never particularly excited to go to the dentist, so I decided to reward myself for going to the dentist I would go to Panera, well actually my dad treated me to lunch since he gave me a gift card there, thanks Dad! I went through the new drive thru and accidentally ended up without two of my items, it was no big deal, who hasn’t had this happen? So I ran inside to get the items I missed and I was blown away by the service, they insisted on refunding me for the items I didn’t get at the drive through and they replaced them, I could not believe it!

I quickly came home and emailed Panera to let them know how much I appreciated the service, I thought they really went above and beyond.

Well tonight I was thinking I needed some pasta and since Panera has some delicious selections so I ended up at Panera, I had to go back after my superb service on Monday.

First I ordered a frozen caramel, which as someone who doesn’t really like coffee, I can’t get enough of these!

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Look at that deliciousness! (Don’t worry I wasn’t driving, I was sitting in the drive through.)

To go with my dose of caffeine I ordered mac and cheese and tortellini with alfredo, I couldn’t decide between the two, I figured Zach can have leftovers when he gets home from work or I can have leftovers later.

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Oh I was in pasta heaven!!

When I finally got my order the girl working the window apologized for the wait, I wasn’t in a hurry so it didn’t bother me in the least, and even if I had been it wasn’t too bad of a wait. I thanked her and put the bag next to me when I heard someone say hold on, I turned back to the window and a manager handed me a bag and again apologized for the wait, I told him it really wasn’t necessary, but he insisted. I called Zach and told him Panera is my new favorite restaurant, when I got home I looked in my little bag and found this huge cinnamon roll!

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Guess what I am having for breakfast in the morning! I can’t wait.

Hold on, it doesn’t end there, when I opened my large bag with my pastas, I found another little something, I laughed to myself and took a picture that I immediately sent to Zach.

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That’s right an oatmeal raisin cookie! I told Zach they must have known and gave him a little something too, you know since I refuse to put raisins in the cookies I make.

These days I don’t think we do enough to appreciate when we have a positive experience, I hear way more about negative experiences, so I think when you have an exceptional experience, like I did, it should be acknowledged. Thank you Panera!

Wow this was a long post just to say I got take out for dinner because I felt lazy but I just had to gush about how awesome Panera is, seriously if you are in the DeKalb and are hungry, I can’t say enough good things about our Panera. Now I guess I better go do something productive and finish up some laundry.

Where is the last place you had fantastic service at?

On a side note today is someone special’s birthday! Happy Birthday Judge Brady! I have clerked for Judge Brady since I first started my job 7 years ago and he also is the one who officiated Zach and my wedding last year!

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Time

This past week Zach’s Aunt and Uncle lost one of their two dogs. Their dogs are as much a part of the family as we are.

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Max & Kiwi

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He was always so happy

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And it never took much convincing to get him to snuggle.

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We love you Max.

With his passing it reminded me that I should cherish my kitty while she’s here. Time is one thing you can never get back so even when I am trying to blog and Toews decides that is the best time to cuddle although I want to blog in the end snuggle time with my little troublemaker is what I will cherish. Here’s some of my favorite moments with her so far.007 (5)

She likes to climb into purses. Yes she did that on her own.

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Help wrap her daddy’s Christmas present.

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Sleep adorably.

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Go for rides in the car.

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Hide in her daddy’s laundry.

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Play in bags and boxes.

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Help do dishes.

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Nap in random places.

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“Play” foosball.

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Spend quality time with her daddy.

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Toews says “Mommy that’s enough pictures.”

Thanks for reading my post, if you have a pet go give it a big hug and kiss and cherish the time you have with them.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip

Last year when Zach and I were planning our wedding celebration we were talking to a close friend who’s family owns a bakery and was going to provide the sweets for our party. We of course had to have cookies and he asked us what kinds we wanted, now as a cookie lover there aren’t many cookies that I don’t enjoy, except oatmeal raisin. When I said everything but oatmeal raisin Zach looked at me and said well what if I wanted oatmeal raisin, I laughed, thinking he was joking with me, he wasn’t. I was shocked to find out I did not know that apparently my husband likes oatmeal raisin cookies. Now cookies have never been at the top of his list if he wanted something homemade, funfetti cupcakes, brownies, Jiffy blueberry muffins, rice crispy treats, have all been requested over the years but never oatmeal raisin cookies.

In my opinion raisins have no place in a cookie, but after our party that was the only cookie we didn’t have leftovers of, so I guess I am in the minority. Now craisins in a cookie with white chocolate chips, that is fantastic. When I was trying to decide what to make today I came to the conclusion that I would compromise with Zach, I still can’t bring myself to voluntarily put raisins in a cookie but I could attempt to make oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, a compromise, and isn’t that what marriage is all about?

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies 1

For this recipe you will need butter, light brown sugar, white sugar, eggs, vanilla, flour, baking soda, salt, oats and chocolate chips.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies 2

In a large bowl cream together butter and sugars until smooth.

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beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in vanilla.

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Combine flour, baking soda and salt; stir into creamed mixture until just blended.

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Mix in oats and chocolate chips.

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Drop by heaping spoonfuls on to ungreased baking sheet. (I used my cookie scoop then flattened the cookies a bit before baking)

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Bake for 12 minutes or until golden brown on the edges. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on sheets before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

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Enjoy!

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups oats
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (I omitted)

Preheat oven to 325

In a large bowl cream together butter and sugars until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in vanilla. Combine flour, baking soda and salt; stir into creamed mixture until just blended. Mix in quick oats, nuts and chocolate chips. Drop by heaping spoonful on to ungreased baking sheets.

Bake for 12 minutes. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on sheets before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

As you can tell baking is much easier for me to attempt. As I am holding the plate to offer Zach a cookie he says to me I’m not really an oatmeal fan.  WHAT? Apparently it’s the raisins in the cookies that he likes so much. Oh well at least he was a good sport and still ate a few. Thanks Baby!

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How do you feel about raisins in your cookies? Love them or leave them.