Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Pillow Cookies & Me

I found this receipe at bakerella  and oh baby look at all of this yummy goodness. I am going to make them for our 4th of July Party. Can you imagine a chocolate chip cookie with a brownie inside, that is like winning the lottery, well maybe not the lottery but something pretty good! Besides isn't it true anything you eat on the 4th of July is freedom from calories? Well it should be because I am making these!  

Brownie Pillow Cookies

1 package brownie mix
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, plus 1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
12 oz. bag miniature semi-sweet chocolate chips

Make brownies according to package and let cool. Cut about ten 1 inch squares. Enjoy the remaining brownies. (I used a pan about 8 X 8)
For the chocolate chip cookie dough, beat butter with a mixer until creamy.
Add brown sugar and beat until smooth
Add eggs, yolk and vanilla. Beat until smooth.
Combine flour, baking powder, soda and salt in a medium bowl and stir together with a wire whisk.
Add flour to butter mixture and beat until combined. Stir in mini chips.
Let dough chill covered in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Use a measuring cup to scoop batter by the 1/2 cup. Since it’s chilled, you may need to pack it with a spoon. Then use the spoon to remove the dough from the cup and place it on parchment paper. Work quickly so the dough remains chilled or either prepare one cookie at a time so the rest of the dough remains cold.After the dough is on the parchment paper, make an indention and place a 1 inch square brownie in the center. Press the brownie down gently and work the remaining dough around the brownie. You can use your hands to shape the dough into a ball.
During this step, I found it easier to use a piece of parchment paper as a work surface since the dough can get sticky and then I used another piece of parchment paper for the baking sheet. If your dough gets too soft, you can chill the rolled dough balls for a few minutes right before baking.
Prepare six cookies at a time using a large baking sheet (15 X 20) and bake at 350 degrees for about 18 minutes. Return the remaining dough to the refrigerator until time to bake the second batch.
Cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes and then cool completely on a wire rack.
Makes about ten cookies using a little less than a 1/2 cup of dough for each cookie.
If your cookies start to get too brown before they are done baking, you can place a sheet of aluminum foil over top for the last few minutes.
and then it should read EAT THEM!

Happy 4th of July

Friday, June 25, 2010

SuMmEr FuN

I lOvE summer lOvE, LoVe, LOVE it! All the seasons have their own set of reasons to love them but summer just has so much more to offer me. Lots of fun, less clothes, flip-flops, swimming, all of my favorite fruits, long warm nights and of course ice cream. This year I decided to start my own Summer List. I got the idea from Meg at megduerkse/ whatever/the-summer-list.html . So of course, I wanted to make my own! My list is a little different from others as I don’t have little ones at home but ….I wanted each Grandbabe to know all the fun that we can have during the summer. After all isn’t that where memories are made when you are young going to Grandma’s, drinking ice tea with sugar, eating ice cream before dinner, wearing her jewelry, making great things in her kitchen regardless of the mess. Well that’s what I do! All the things I hated cleaning up after when I had my babes at home now they bring me joy. Now my house is always clean, no fingerprints on everything, no pattern marks all over the toilet (sorry I had boys), no used dishes under the bed, now my laundry is done in two hours. So I have lots of time to think of messes that my Grandbabes can do at my house. Funny how things change you work so hard when you are young to make your house so perfect for your family and then you get a little older your kids grow up, your house is perfect and then you work so hard to mess it up. Love this season of my life and especially... I love being Grandma Lolo!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

"Mini" and Me

If you have followed me or know me, you do know that at times I am a little cRaZy. My love of fun and laughter at times may seem a little over the top, I guess it comes from my past years of fighting depression and having so much sorrow in my life that I refuse to have a day that is not filled with joy. Joy was part of the blessings I received when the Lord gave me a new life, great package deal I might add. Well with all that said my Pastor is on sabbatical for 3 months from June1 to September 19, not only will we be praying for him during this time we have also been given this:
It is our “Mini Marty”
It is a kind of contest to take our “Mini” with us this summer to take pictures on our vacations or wherever and submit them. My photo was the first one submitted and shown on the overhead at church. OK I have to admit the quality of the photo is bad- but in my defense, first I had to put the “I voted” sticker on him, next I had a hard time getting him in a seat belt, then when I was taking this picture it was in the parking lot and people started really looking at me, can you say awkward…

I can’t wait to see how others will get creative too, but I have to admit I really want to win. Any ideas?? What makes this so great is it really does remind me to pray for Pastor Marty, I see him every morning on my fridge, and you know I am all about the reminders on my fridge. Life can be so hard sometimes we forget to have fun. When you think about it how can we share Jesus with others if we are not living a life that shows others joy. Now I am not saying you have to dress in a clown suit or be a stand up comedian, but have you ever heard someone laugh aloud and even though you have no idea what they are laughing at and somehow you feel like laughing? That is the kind of joy I am talking about the kind that others want to have just because they see it you, I call it contagious joy. So here is my challenge, go out this summer and have fun, share your joy, take pictures of you with your “Joy” make it be your “Mini Marty”.

Acts2:28: You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.

Friday, June 4, 2010

I'm Still HERE!

My 2-Year anniversary is June 6, the date I was diagnosed with an aggressive form of metastatic melanoma, cancer. I really think the moment you find out you have cancer is a bit like finding out there is no Santa (but worse). Your world grows up in a new and scary way. All I wanted was my ordinary life back, and it became utterly clear, that time becomes more valuable than anything else is. Well, I didn't get my “ordinary life” back if I did I think that would be the sad part of the story. I had a good life but not a great life. I really think I focused on some really crazy things. What I did get is more time to have an extra-ordinary life and that is just aMaZiNg! I have danced more, sang more, laughed more, loved more, and defiantly hugged more than I ever did B.C (before cancer). My days are just better! .My life looking back on it was like drinking flat Coke, it looked good but there was just something missing. Sometimes I know hearing about another cancer story from me is like hearing about another celebrity in rehab, it just might get old. But, I can’t help but share how really amazing God is in my life. It truly is my story about redemption, grace and love. Everybody has a story in his or her life, mine just happens to be cancer. I guess you might be saying, what a silly thing to celebrate that anniversary date. It sounds so dark and depressing and it would almost seem like I am focusing on the past. This date does not define me as a girl with cancer; this date is the milestone marker of my life. You know as a  marker set up on a roadside to indicate the distance in miles you have gone. So this is my two-year marker! I ask myself, what have I done with my life in two years? Have I shown others God’s love? Have I witnessed Christ salvation? Am I being all that God has called me to be? So I will aim towards the next marker, the next milestone, I will celebrate this day with hope that I can only have that in God. After all, I am still here!