Hey

Hey so…sorry I’ve been a little absent lately.

It’s all for good reason.

I have a little announcement :)

 

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Yep, we’re expecting our 3rd little bundle of joy in November. So I’ve been basically laid  up with the lovely morning sickness for like the last month.

**Knock on wood**  I think I’m getting a little better. I sure hope so because I have a big birthday coming up in 2 weeks and I don’t want to cancel it!

 

I’ve also been thinking of a possible change with the direction of this blog…but I’m not entirely sure on that one. We’ll see. :)  But that’s all for now!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lucky Charms Cupcakes

St. Patty’s day is right around the corner and if you’re still looking for  a fun and super easy treat to have to celebrate, look no further.

I present, Lucky Charms Cupcakes.

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In preparation for this yummy and fun dessert I had to buy Lucky Charms right? Look at this box I found!

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It’s vintage!

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General Mills has a few other cereals out on the shelves that have the vintage picture on the front and I believe the back of the box. Kind of cool I think.

Anyway, back to the cupcakes.

Basically, all you’re going to need is either  your favorite recipe for a white cake mix/yellow or you can cheat like I did and buy a box :) and your favorite recipe for frosting or again you can cheat and buy a can of frosting. And then obviously the Lucky Charms.

Mix up your batter for the cuppy cakes, and then if you have a toddler, let them lick the beater :)

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That’s an order!

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Cuppy Cakes!!

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Now I didn’t cheat when it came to the frosting, I actually just used a recipe I found on the internet, and this is the one I chose. Again, super easy to make.

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Getting closer to being done!

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I picked out the marshmallows out of the box and I felt like a kid only eating the marshmallows out of the bowl and leaving the rest of it to float in the milk.

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In retrospect I probably should have colored the frosting a bit to give it a little umph but oh well.

So there you have it, your treats for St. Patty’s day, they’re magically delicious!

Brain Dump

I’m going to warn you now.

I’m brain dumping on you people.

Some of those who really know me and have been reading/following my blog for quite sometime have known that I love love love, taking pictures. I don’t have photography business, though that would be awesome but I don’t want to step on my friends who are photographers and take business away from them. Honestly, that type of photography is not at all what I’m interested in either. I love taking pictures of random junk, nature and well my kids at random moments. But this isn’t the point of my brain dump.

Again, those who have followed me know that I have done photo-a-day challenges. One was with Fat Mum Slim. I have no idea how I got around to finding her and joining in on the challenge but it was fun and awesome..for a while. I did it mostly last summer when it was nicer out and I could actually go outside and take pictures using the wonderful natural light we do get in the summer and not have to put on a million things to stay warm. I stopped doing her photo-a-day thing because it was hard to see all the pictures that were posted that day and I honestly felt that more and more actual photographers were being brought into the group and my pictures looked like crap next to theirs.

Since then, I joined a different one, one that wasn’t strictly on Facebook but through a separate website. I loved being able to see all the pictures that were posted that day. More people were apt to post a comment on my picture if they wanted to than just the people who posted like a couple of minutes before I posted mine. I enjoyed it for a while but as of late I’ve noticed that after I post my picture, because I generally do it in the morning, other people in the group post pretty much the same thing! It’s like these people don’t have a creative bone in their body. For example, the list for the month is sent out like a couple of days before the month is to start ok? I looked at last month’s list and I noticed that there was one that said “Conversation” I knew what I was going to do for that prompt. I took pictures of those Conversation Hearts, days before the prompt came up,

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I even did some of these for the other prompts that were coming up like, ” Little Heart” “Red”

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Granted, yes I knew that it was around Valentines Day and Conversation Hearts were out, but there are other ways of conveying conversation instead of doing what everyone else is doing.

As far as the other two I posted here. The little heart one, so the one that looks like I drew it….someone totally copied that one. Like it was almost plagiarized. Color and all. I was pissed. And the heart one, someone else did this too..

Why do people have to copy each other? Really?

I mean I know imitation is a form of flattery but I don’t even know these people. Mr. N asked one day after I told him that someone copied one of my pictures, why I was still doing it. The only thing I could think of was that I really do like taking pictures and seeing what other people do for the prompt.

Another thing about my photo-a-day thing is that I’m getting burnt out. I really don’t have any motivation to get my camera out and take pictures. I think it’s the winter. I hate this winter, and I’ll be glad that it’s over. I just don’t know if I should continue. I started making a photo scrapbook with the pictures I’ve taken so far with this photo-a-day group. But I don’t want to quit, I want to be able to complete this, you know? I’m currently four days behind in this group and I don’t know what I want to do for the prompts.

I don’t know what to do.

Any advice?

St. Patty’s Day Crafts!

Now that we’ve got the first part down for our St. Patty’s Day funness, we’ll move on to part 2, crafts!

I love me some crafts!

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My friend Mrs. P and I are going to be doing some fun crafty stuff towards the end of the month and I can’t wait!!!

Anyway, here are your St. Patty’s day crafts, to do with the kiddies or without!

Shamrock Mason Jars

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I may do this one with the kids-Hand clover

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Lucky Charms Bracelet

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Rainbow Wreath

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Ombre Clover Shirt

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Mod Podge Plate

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Printable Party Circles–for cupcakes or tags for goodie bags

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A whole bunch of different printables

Handprint Rainbow–this one would be fun to do with the kids

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Another cute wreath!

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Candle Decor

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Last wreath I swear-Charmed wreath

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Paint chip shamrocks

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Rock, Pots and Shamrocks 

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These all look so much fun!!

St. Patty’s Day Goodies

St. Patty’s day is a little over a week away, and if you haven’t figured out what kind of fun activities to do with the kids yet or the type of goodies to have check this post out. Because it’s only going to bring the best ideas for this holiday!

I’m going to split this up between two posts, a.) the goodies and b.) the activities

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So let’s start with the first!

Marshmallow Pops–this looks so easy to make!

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Twizzlers and Rolo’s –fun for the kids

Rainbow Cupcake

If you like mint and Oreo’s try this one–Mint Oreos

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Lucky Charm Bars

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Irish Style Dirt Cake

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If you’re going the healthier route–rainbow fruit

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Clover-wiches

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Mustache Lollies

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Rainbow Ka-bobs

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Green Milkshake

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Grasshopper Cheesecake

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There are just so many recipes out there for green/Irish inspired treats! But there are some to get you started!

 

 

Minon Birthday Party Round-Up

So the Despicable Me has been a thing at our house since we watched the first movie.

Yeah.

We own the first and second movie and have the Minions Mini Movie too. It has a couple of shorts on it like this one.

My kids like to pretend they’re Kevin, or Stuart or Dave (you know, the minions).

My eldest is having a birthday party coming up and he loves loves loves the movies.

So I thought I’d round-up some of the cutest and fun Despicable Me birthday ideas floating around there on the interwebs and share it with you!

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Here are some cute invites that I found:

Customized Despicable Me 2 invites 

This one is super cute,

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Thought these were fun!

Ticket Despicable Me invites

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You can’t forget about the fun stuff!

Bowling Minions

Box of Shame

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Put the eyes on the minion

Or the decorations!

Despicable Me kit

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Photo booth props

Minion bunting

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Name banner

Printables

Last but certainly not least, the goodies!

Caterpillars 

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Minion Twinkie cupcakes

Shrunken Moon Pops 

Goodie Bags–there’s a ton of stuff from Party City and Etsy that I could throw into these goodie bags!

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I’m so excited! To start planning a Despicable Me birthday party!

Three Cheese Sausage Lasagna

How are we friends?

I’m well. This last weekend was a doozy for me and the Mister.

Oy.

I’ll try to make it short. Mr. N and I were going to a super awesome and super fun couples retreat through our church. Mama and Papa Newman were going to take the boys for a whole week (yes I said whole week, I’m blessed to have these people in my life watch my boys for that long), but…being that we live in the wonderful state we do, we had an awful snow storm the night before. I can’t remember exactly how many inches of snow we did end up getting, but the roads were awful, and there was blizzard conditions throughout most of the state the day of the retreat, ugh.

They are dubbing this winter we’re having the worst winter ever. I would have to agree. Mr. N and his family are a snowmobiling family, so they love winter right? Even he’s done with winter.

Don’t fret. Mr. N and I got the boys to their grandparents and we went to the retreat, but it took us 7 1/2 hours. Yep. Iit would have probably taken us 4 hours-ish. But being as the roads were just nasty, it took us longer. By the time we got to the retreat I was a tad grumpy. Any who, I calmed down and had an awesome time.

I’m enjoying my time without my boys but I do miss the little turkey’s.

Today’s recipe comes from my good friend Mrs. K.  Hi Mrs. K! *wave*

So there’s a funny story behind this recipe.  Mrs. K sent me and some of her other friends/family a couple of recipes for us to check out. They seemed interesting and I wanted to try them. I had it on our menu for this last Sunday, ok? Well on Saturday Mrs. K and her hubby invited Mr. N and I over for games and supper and we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to hang out with them more, because they’re just that fun! Anywho, she told me that she’ll be making her white sauce lasagna. Sounds yummy right? Yeah, I didn’t’ realize that this white sauce lasagna was one in the same as the recipe I’m bringing you today!

Without further adieu, three cheese sausage lasagna or white sauce lasagna.

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So you’ll need pretty much everything that in this picture, plus a couple of more items.

You’ll want to get your noodles going and cooked before you venture into this process. I like to cook mine before I dive into the rest of the parts to recipe. That way if I end of having to handle the noodles, I don’t burn my pretty little hand. :)

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Then you’ll want to start to brown your sausage. I probably had a little more than what was actually needed because where we get our groceries they didn’t have just one pounder italian sausage. But that’s ok, I like this stuff!

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Speaking of where we get groceries, in case you can’t tell from the product labels in the picture above, we go to HyVee. Yay HyVee! Earlier this week the company announced that they will be coming to the Twin Cities! WOOT!! I’m super excited.

Next you’re going to throw butter in a sauce pan and heat that up until it’s all melty.

Mmmm butter.

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Basically we’re making the white sauce here. Flour, butter, milk and salt -n-peppa :)

See? Sauce.

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Here comes the fun part. Layering!

I’m going to be honest. I totally screwed this part up. I don’t know how but I did.

I forgot the cheese.

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How can I forget the cheese? It’s the best part!!

Sorry cheese.

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All ready to go into the oven. You’re going to want preheat the oven to 350, throw it in for 35 minutes.

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**DROOL**

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This is soooo good. I’m really shocked though, when we did eat this at Mr. and Mrs. K’s house I saw the spinach and I had an inner monologue going “he’s not going to like it, he’s not going to like it”…Mr. N does not eat spinach and he loved it. So, thanks to Mrs. K  for making this and societal convention making  him eat it! :)

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Now its your turn to try it!

Three Cheese Sausage Lasagna

Ingredients:

1.5 pounds mild Italian sausage

1/3 c. chopped onion

6 T butter

6  T flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

3 c milk

9 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained

1 1/2 c shredded mozzarella cheese

18 slices provolone cheese

1/3 c grated romano cheese

2-3 c. fresh baby spinach (do not use frozen)

What to do:

In a large skillet cook sausage and onion, drain and set aside. In a small sausage, melt butter, whisk in flour, salt and pepper until smooth. Gradually whisk in the milk. Bring to a boil over medium-low heat, cook and stir for 2-3 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat.

In a greased 9×13 baking dish, layer a fourth of the sauce, three noodles, half the sausage, half the spinach, 1/2 cup of the mozzarella cheese and 6 slices of provolone. Repeat this layers once.

Spoon half the remaining sauce over the top of these layers. Then add remaining noodles, sauce, and mozzarella and provolone cheese and top with all the romano cheese.

Bake uncovered at 350 for 35, let stand for 15 minutes before serving. Makes 12 servings.

Tator Tot Hotdish

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There’s only one other type of meal in the winter time that’s better than soup and that’s hotdish. I mean the name of hotdish explains itself. It’s hot. It’s in a dish. And yes, I called it a hotdish, because that’s what we call it up here in Minnesota, doncha know now.

And in the wonderful world I live in now, it’s a great time to be eating something like this. The part of the state of Minnesota that I live in unfortunately is having yet another snow storm. This one is fun because we first got some sleet, then its supposed to snow between 3-17 inches. Yes I said 3-17. Every meteorologist in the state of Minnesota can’t pinpoint the amount of snow we’re expected because the weather models are all so different. And since the storm didn’t start until later than expected we’re in for an interesting day. I’m praying that it stops snowing later tonight and doesn’t pick up tomorrow because Mr. N and I have plans gosh darn it! So it is very much winter still here.

^Tangent

Sorry.

Today I bring you Tator Tot Hotdish. No, it’s not your Grandma’s hot dish, though it’s probably similar. I add in a little something to make mine special.

Can you guess what it is?

Hehehee.

It’s cheese!

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Yup. I love my cheese! Cheese makes everything better. And chocolate. But that I think might make tater tot hotdish a bit weird. I’m not going to try it either.

And that’s not just any ordinary cheese, that’s Velveeta. MMmmm Velveeta.

Anywho, this recipe super-duper easy. If you already know how to make tator tot hotdish then adding the cheese isn’t all difficult. If not, stick around.

First you’re gonna want to brown your beef, or turkey if you’re being healthy. I use beef because well a.) I like beef, and we have a quarter of a cow in our freezer (probably not so much of the quarter anymore) and b.) I paid for that quarter of a cow, Imma going to use it!

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I usually throw in some chopped onion to give the beef a bit o’ flavor.

While you’re browning your beef (turkey) you can cut up your Velveeta into cubes. Then throw it into a saucepan with a can of cream of something, I suggest using mushroom soup or possibly celery, and then fill that can you had, half full of milk. Heat that on medium-low heat to melt the cheese.

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Once your meat is browned throw it into a baking dish, this one I got at my garage sale finds last year. Then you can add in your veggies. I usually get the mixed veggies without lima beans but as you can see, there are some in there. Sad face.

Pour that cheesy goodness over the meat and veggies and give that good mix.

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Drippy!

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Throw some tots on top and chuck it into the oven. Ok, don’t really chuck it, that would make a huge mess. I don’t want to be responsible for any messes in ovens, because I hate cleaning ovens.

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It is sooo yummy in my tummy. This was and still kind of is my favorite meal. My mom used to make it all the time growing up.

Tator Tot Hotdish

1 pound of beef (turkey)

1 can of cream of  mushroom/celery soup

4-8 oz of Velveeta Cheese

Tator Tots

1/2 can milk

your favorite frozen veggies

chopped onion (optional)

I’m going to warn you, I don’t have exact measurements for the cheese, tots and veggies. Use as much as you want. If you want to use less cheese go for it. I love cheese so I used a full 8 oz and if you wan to use more, use more! I just threw as much veggies and tots as I saw fit.

Instructions

Preheat oven to 375°. Brown beef (turkey) until no longer pink, you can throw in some chopped onion if you’d like. Cut up Velveeta into cubes. Put into medium saucepan with can of soup, and half a can of milk. Heat on medium-low heat until cheese is melted. Pour beef into casserole dish approximately 2 quarts, and then put veggies on top. Pour cheese mixture on top and mix up. Throw some tots on top of everything. Put in a preheated oven and bake for about 45 minutes or until tots are golden brown.  Serve with homemade buns, bread or biscuits!

Chicken Parmesan Meatballs

How are we doing on this lovely President’s Day?

Did you have the day off? Did you go shopping and nab some awesome deals? Or did you stay inside where it’s nice and warm and catch up on long-awaited projects? Are we ready for winter to be over yet?

I sure am.

Here in Minnesota we got another snow storm. We approximately got 4.25 inches of that lovely white stuff today. Yay! *sense the sarcasm there* I’m just thinking it’s only 31 days until spring! Woot!

Tonight I bring you a delicious entrée that I stumbled upon a month or so ago. And it is yummy!

I got it from my brother, yes I said my brother. He’s been going to school at Le Cordon Bleu for the last month and since he moved to the Cities he’s been trying a bunch of recipes. This one I had the opportunity to nab a sampling of it so I can try it at home.

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So basically you start out with some ground chicken.

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Throw in some bread crumbs, here I used Panko Breadcrumbs, but you can probably use whatever you have on hand or prefer.  Add in some spices and mix it all up well.

Oh and don’t forget the egg!

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MEATBALLS!

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You can’t forget the cheese, that’s the best part! I mean, its cheese!

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Oh they’re going to be sooo good!

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**DROOL**

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Yes, that’s my dirty napkin there. I forgot to pull it out before I took the picture. Oh well, at least you know that I am not a clean eater. I usually make a hot mess of myself when eating. I should really wear a bib. ;)

There you have it. Go and try this recipe, you won’t regret it! I probably could have licked the plate clean it’s that good. Yes, I said lick the plate. I’ve done that before but mostly just with dessert. I think my friend Cathy could attest to an incident of me doing so. Or was it Mrs. K? Hmm…oh well. Now you know more of me than you wanted to. Sorry!

Chicken Parmesan Meatballs

Ingredients: 

1 1/4 lbs ground chicken

2 T onion, chopped

1/2 c. Parmesan

1/2 c. breadcrumbs

zest half a lemon

1 T parsley

1 minced garlic

1 tsp. chili flakes

1 egg, whisked

1-14 oz pizza sauce

3 T olive oil

4 oz mozzarella slices.

Preheat oven to 400°. Throw all ingredients-except pizza sauce, oil and mozzarella cheese-in a bowl. Mix well. Make large balls and then arrange on foil lined baking sheet. Mix one spoonful of pizza sauce and olive oil in a bowl. Brush pizza sauce mix on top of meatballs. Bake the meatballs for 15 minutes. Pour more of the sauce on the meatballs and top with sliced mozzarella. Return to the oven for another 3-5 minutes for the cheese to melt.

Serve with your favorite sides and enjoy!

Valentine’s Day

It’s Valentine’s Day!!

What are you and your snuggle bunny, sweetie pie, significant other up to today?

Well if you must know, Mr. N and I have huge plans! Yes…

We’re going to go grocery shopping after he’s done with work (real romantic huh?).

While we’re at the grocery store I’m going to pick up a Red Box movie that I had reserved. Tonight’s featurette will be Rush , starring the ever so talented Thor, ahem, I mean Chris Hemsworth and Olivia Wilde. It’s about a Formula 1 race car driver and some races.You know I really don’t know what it’s about. I saw a preview for it on Top Gear when the director Ron Howard was on it as their star in a reasonably priced car segment and it looked good. It’ll be a good movie for Mr. N to watch because it’s not chick flicky and it’ll be good for me to watch because it’s got some eye candy in it, I mean…

Then after we’ve got our lovely groceries for the next two weeks, we’re off to Papa Murphy’s where you’ve guessed it, we’re getting a heart-shaped pizza to go. After we’ve gotten our pizza we are going to head home, make our yummy pizza and bread sticks and then enjoy some deliciousness for dessert.

You may remember it from my post a week or so ago on Valentine’s Day treats. 

Basically you’re going to start out with one of these

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Or if you want to get fancy, you can make your own white cake mix, but I cheated and used a box.

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This was a super easy and fun cake to make. I’ve made something similar to this for a 4th of July a couple of years ago. This is quite similar to that except there’s a little twist to it.  Instead of dividing up the batter between three bowls and adding in food coloring to 2 of them, you only take part of the batter, pour it into a separate bowl than the white cake mix, and add in strawberry Jell-O.

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How cool is that? Not only is it colored, its flavored!

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I’m kind of bummed that my pan tried to eat part of my cake.

Bad pan. No cake for you!

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I tried to be fancy and make my own frosting. That didn’t turn out well. I was sad. I had to wait until we went grocery shopping so I can get some frosting from the store. These photos probably would have been better if I would have been able to use the natural light of the day but alas..

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It was so yummy even Jacob liked it. Of course he’ll eat anything that’s sweet.

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Valentine’s Swirl Cake from Julie’s Eats & Treats

Ingredients:

  • 1 box white cake mix
  • Ingredients to make cake
  • 1 small box strawberry jello
  • 1 container white frosting (I would recommend not using whipped frosting because it won’t drizzle well)

Instructions: 

Preheat oven to temperature on cake mix. Generously grease a fluted tube cake pan. Make cake batter according to directions on box.

Pour 1/2 of the batter into a small bowl; stir 1 Tbsp strawberry jello into cake mix until well mixed.

Pour 1/2 of the red cake batter into bottom of pan. Carefully pour remaining white batter over red batter. Top with the rest of the red batter. The red batter will not completely cover the white batter.

Bake as directed on box. Cool cake 5 minutes. Flip out of pan onto cooling rack and cool cake completely.

When cake is cooled, divide the frosting evenly into 2 microwaveable bowls. Microwave 1 bowl of frosting on high a few seconds until smooth enough to drizzle over cake. With spoon, drizzle all of the 1st bowl of microwaved frosting over the cake. Repeat microwaving second bowl. Stir in the rest of the jello mix. Drizzle over cake. *Note you do not need to use all the frosting!

Let the cake stand until frosting is set. Enjoy!