Christmas cookies

Posted in Celebrations, Family outings, Food, Leah, Molly on December 23rd, 2015 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Per tradition, the girls went to Grams’s house to bake Christmas cookies. Sadly this year Aunt Caroline was not around to help since she no longer lives nearby. We miss you Aunt Caroline.

Christmas cookies

Baking cookies with Aunt EA meant they also got to hang out a bit with Charlie. Leah thought that was great, though Charlie seems a bit bored by it all.

Leah and Charlie

Charlie is excellent at staring. Molly’s smile doesn’t stand a chance at getting him to blink.


A night out

Posted in Food on April 8th, 2014 by c-had – 1 Comment

With G’Mom and Grampa in town, they let us head out for a fancy dinner at Woodberry Kitchen. This picture is in honor of E.A. and Scott, my sister and brother-in-law, as they love to post this pose again and again.

Fancy dinner

Dinner was fun. Lots of creative, farm-to-table yummy food.

Fun dinner

Hooray for our first fancy dinner out in a while.

For the love of cookies!

Posted in Food, Leah, Molly, Playdates on February 22nd, 2012 by jen – 3 Comments

On Monday, I hosted my second Drop In & Decorate party. The idea is simple: decorate sugar cookies, then donate them to a local non-profit agency.

My sous-chefs helped me prep our sugar cookies. I had 5 other moms baking for me and in total we had 18 dozen cookies to decorate!

Prepping cookies

The moms and kids were invited to drop in during the day and decorate for as long as they liked.

A cookie party

Molly enjoyed using a rainbow of colors on all her cookies.

One color is not enough

Leah and I worked together to decorate.


Adding sprinkles was a must. And even now that I have swept the floors three times, those sprinkles keep showing up!

Looking out for little brother

It was fun to watch and see what each of the kids created.

Watching the artist

Even the moms got into the decorating spirit.

Fun for moms too

Lots of giggles and laughter came from this table!

A table of friends

The kids were allowed to eat one cookie after they finished decorating. Apparently, the full plate of sprinkles were part of the deal too.

Sprinkles, yum!

Here's a sample of the decorated cookies.

A select few

In the end, thirty moms and kids decorated approximately 200 cookies to donate to Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center.

200 cookies later

Thank you to all of my cookie volunteers for making our party such a huge success!

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Party

Posted in Celebrations, Family visits, Food, Kid crafts, Leah, Molly on September 28th, 2011 by jen – 5 Comments

A told B, and B told C
“I'll meet you at the house
for Leah's party!”

“Whee!” said D to E F G
“Are you coming to see
the coconut tree?”

Chicka chicka boom boom!
Will there be enough room?
We'll find out when you RSVP!


When Leah consistently started choosing Chicka Chicka Boom Boom for a bedtime story, I knew it would be the perfect theme for her 2nd birthday. The party started with making Boom Boom shakers. It takes a lot of concentration to fill a shaker with beads.

Boom Boom shakers

Yeah, stickers!

The kids then sat for a reading of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom and used their shakers to go boom boom!

A reading

To the surprise of many, I did not make the cake this time. Chad convinced me to focus on the rest of the party prep and have it made by Oh What a Cake. It was great decision and a great cake.

Chicka Boom cake

The basic story of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom is about the alphabet climbing to the top of the coconut tree. So, naturally we had to have one present.

The coconut tree

Thanks for inspiring silly ways to play with balloons, Uncle J!

Balloon belly

Leah was so excited for the birthday song that she even sang it to herself!

Singing Happy Birthday

To fully appreciate the taste of the cake, Leah thought it necessary to close her eyes. Though, when you do that you must open your mouth as wide as you can to make sure it gets in.

Can't get enough cake

Who needs a fork? Icing, finger, tongue.

Who needs a fork?

Then it was present time and the kids were definitely present.

Gather round

Leah's very into baby dolls right now. This one came with a bottle, which was a big hit.

Baby doll and bottle

She also enjoyed reading a fun, new book.

Fun new book

And as a party favor, guests left with colorful alphabet cookies.

Alphabet cookies

Skit skat skoodle doot.
Flip flop flee.
Thanks for coming
To Leah’s party!

Making goodies and gifts

Posted in Food, Sewing on August 17th, 2011 by jen – Be the first to comment

These chocolate peanut butter cupcakes were for our Bible study. There is a debate in our house as to whether the peanut butter cream cheese icing plus the surprise peanut butter inside was ENOUGH peanut butter! And as a side note, chilled peanut butter cream cheese icing tastes extra yummy!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Leah's friend, Rachel, turned 2. So, I made her a Lucy jumper for her birthday. She can wear it now, and layer it with a shirt when the weather becomes cooler.

Fall dress for Rachel

I just can't resist making these whale jon jons for baby boys. This one is for Camp, our friends Gabe and Helen's little boy.

Whale jon jon again

Celebrating all things PINK

Posted in Food, Kid crafts, Leah, Molly, Playdates on June 28th, 2011 by jen – 1 Comment

We have a lover of all things pink in our house, so when National Pink Day came around on June 23rd, I knew we had to celebrate! I hosted a Pinkalicious Party in honor of the day.

I decided to make our reading of Pinkalicious a bit more fun. I had the girls stand-up or sit-down every time I said the word pink or cupcake. Do you know how many times those are said in this book?! A lot! They eventually gave up and just sat and listened.

We had some pinktastic treats: strawberry cupcakes and strawberry pink lemonade. I used these free printables for the cupcake toppers.

Happy PINK Day

And of course there was a pinkerific craft! The girls painted with glue to create Pinkalicious magnets.

Pinkerella magnets

The girls came dressed for the occasion and had a fun time celebrating all things pink!

Girls in pink

And Leah enjoyed getting in on the cupcake action too.

Mmmm, cupcakes!

Mom, Wife, Craftaholic

Posted in Crafts, Food, Sewing on June 26th, 2011 by jen – 1 Comment

That should be my title! Here are some of my latest projects.

The theme for my MOMS Club End of the Year Banquet was "If you give a Mom an M..." based of these books by Laura Numeroff. We had door prizes of movie tickets and a manicure gift certificate. I made these marshmallow pops as the party favor. They were a big hit!

Marshmallow pops

Molly saw me dipping the marshmallows in chocolate and asked if she could dip her pretzels in it too. Good idea, Molly (and a great way to use up the rest of the chocolate)!

Chocolate pretzels

My dad always has a book with him, so I made him these scrap fabric bookmarks for Father's Day.

Bookmarks for Grampa

And I sent a few more pillowcases to ConKerr Cancer. I had received the wrong fabric in an order, so they let me keep it and suggested donating it. So, that's what I did.

ConKerr Cancer pillowcases

Celebrating with family

Posted in Celebrations, Crafts, Food, Sewing, Trip on April 29th, 2011 by jen – Be the first to comment

On Monday night, I made cupcakes for a combined early birthday/Mother's Day celebration for my sister and mom.

Birthday cupcakes

There was a yummy surprise inside these cupcakes - chocolate chip cookie dough! My BIL said they were possibly the best cupcakes he'd ever had!

A surprise inside

Michelle was excited to finally get some homemade vanilla extract after waiting months for it to ferment.

An exciting gift

And by special request, I made these kitchen owl towels for her birthday.

Kitchen owl towels

For my mom, I embroidered all the granddaughters' handprints as a Mother's Day gift.

Handprints for G'Mom

You can see a lot more pictures from our trip on Flickr starting here.

English Toffee

Posted in Food on April 12th, 2011 by jen – Be the first to comment

As I've mentioned before, I am a staff liaison at my church. I wanted to make a birthday treat for one of the staff members, so I tried my hand at English Toffee. Our friend, Eric, made some using this Cooking for Engineers recipe a while back and it was so good. Mine got a big thumb's up in our house too.

English Toffee

I also brought some to a few of my girl friends who happen to be in our own Biggest Loser club. Chad asked if I was trying to sabotage, but since I'm not trying to win this time, I called it "A friend bringing treats." Right?!

Get Your Craft On Tuesday

Mickey Mouse Cake Pops

Posted in Food on April 3rd, 2011 by jen – 3 Comments

Molly's teachers asked parents not to bring in cake or cupcakes for birthday celebrations since preschoolers + icing = a big mess! So, in an effort to follow the rules yet still sneak in a bit of birthday cake, I made Mickey Mouse Cake Pops.

Mickey cake pops

You've never heard of cake pops, you say? It's cake mixed with icing and covered in chocolate. How can you go wrong? It's not the most healthy treat, but oh it's yummy goodness! Check out all the amazing cake pops at

If you decide to make some, here are a few tips from a rookie:

  • I melted my candy melts in a double boiler. When melted, I removed the boiler from the stove, but left the bowl of chocolate over the warmed water while dipping. This kept the chocolate warm and thin.
  • The chocolate coating cracked on several cake pops during my trail run. After much googling, I realized that the cake balls were too cold before I dipped them. So, when I made the Mickey ones, I let the balls sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before dipping. I'm happy to report there were no cracks the second time around!
  • I inserted the chocolate dipped lollipop sticks while the cake balls were sitting out. The coolness of the cake balls set the chocolate quickly so they were ready to dip.
  • I had some streaking showing up while dipping my Mickeys. I thought it was because of the 2 Tablespoons of shortening I added to thin out the melted chocolate. But I realized it was from the ears melting! I used milk chocolate candy melts for the ears, and dipped in dark chocolate. So, if you make the Mickey Mouse cake pops, I'd suggest using the same kind of chocolate for the ears and dipping.

Now go make some of this yummy goodness for yourself!