Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you and your family a safe and happy Christmas.
And a happy and blessed new year!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Peppermint Mocha Cupcakes

Anything with crushed candy canes in the batter at this time of the year is a good thing. Plus earlier this year I fell in love with mocha cupcakes. So when I saw this recipe, I just had to try it.

Mocha Chocolate Goodness
Candy Cane Fun
Ready For The Oven
Lots Of Little Goodness
Super Sweet Treats

I found the recipe here. And by no means went 'all out' as you will see if you click on the link. I did a simple butter icing with peppermint essence. Sprinkled crushed candy canes on top with a M&M to top it off.

They were lovely. I guess we are always our own worst critic. The only thing I would change is to make them in bigger paper cups. They were about a 2 to3 bite size, but not big enough to really enjoy the cake underneath the icing. I like to have the mocha flavour come through more, so next time I would use less peppermint in the icing, if any. Or a stronger coffee in the mix. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Candy Cane Biscuits

A soft cake like dough that transformed into some soft tasty cookies. Although I think I got way too excited about taking them out of the oven that they needed just that little longer to harden up.

Sadly these cookies were never given the opportunity to become what they were meant to be. They were soft and unless eaten straight from the fridge, flopped and broke apart on attempt to consume.

These were extremely tasty though. Another fantastic chocolate cookie with real candy canes crushed and mixed through the batter. Then some more on top just to top them off. I look forward to trying these again hopefully with some more crunchy success.

I did have to stand guard to keep cheeky little boys from trying to swipe them off the tray just out of the oven :-)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Cookies For Santa Recipe

In my mind these are officially one of the yummiest 'true American' style cookie recipes. I made these into Cookies For Santa Jars and gave them out as gifts this year. Here is the recipe for those who are chasing it.

Ingredients & Method
1 1/3 cup all purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup & leveled
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup cooking oats
3/4 cup m&ms
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 – 1/2 cup chopped pecans
Stir all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Then add the following:
1 slightly beaten egg
1/2 cup butter (melted slightly in the microwave)
1 teaspoon vanilla
Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Use the back of a large spoon to work it all together. You may even need to use your hands to get everything incorporated. Then roll the cookie dough into 1 1/2 inch balls, place on a parchment covered baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes in a preheated 350 degree oven.

Adapted from the super creative Bakerella


Saturday, December 17, 2011

Candy Cane Reindeer

Christmas crafts, oh so fun. The boys had a great time making these Candy Cane Reindeer. I guess they look more like funny little characters that escaped from some crazy Christmas kids TV show with over sized bells. But they were fun and we had all the supplies handy... so why not? And it was lovely for the boys to have the opportunity to give something to the ones they love, that they had made all by themselves. 

To make they are pretty self explanatory but here is the link if you need more details

Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas In Our Home 2011

Part of the dining table centerpiece...
Love IKEA Christmas goodies.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Harvest Time

A few fresh goodies from the garden. 
Aston likes eating the cherry tomatoes straight of the vine. 
Jonah likes chewing on the shallots and chives.

The beefsteak tomatoes will be ripened inside to make sure I don't lose the fruit to pests. The smaller ones are closer to an average size tomato in the shops.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Cookies For Santa

I saw these at Christmas 2010 and have waited a year to be able to make these gorgeous homemade gifts. A jar labelled 'Cookies For Santa' filled with the ingredients to make delicious and truly American Christmas cookies. I think they might be called cowboy cookies... You need Christmas M&M's, so as soon as I found some at the shop I stocked up.

I will be honest, they were time consuming and after all that effort you really only want to give them to those who will appreciate it. But that is what gift giving is about: giving your time and effort to show your appreciation to those special people in your life.

I am so pleased with the result and look forward to handing out these special gifts. I will put a post up with my Christmas cookie results and the recipe. With 2 types of sugar, choc chips, m&m's, these are a real treat if you manage to save any for more than a day once they get out of the oven.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Wool n Wire Christmas Craft

Christmas Craft #2 as seen in the Better Homes and Gardens magazine. It was very hard to photograph because I used quite dark wool. After 3 hours of wool winding this is the result.

Simple enough to do, just time consuming. Shape some bendy wire into a word and wrap wool around and around, and around and around....

Friday, December 2, 2011


I go through phases with my shells. There are times that I like to collect particular 'types' of shells. At the moment I love the look of these types of shells. I wonder if God gets bored and decides to make new colour schemes with His shells. I have seen alot of chocolate colour shells lately. Although I think that it is simply because I go through these phases with the shells and don't notice the others that I am not interested in at the time.