Monthly Archives: December 2011

I Heart Faces – Furry Faces Photo Challenge

I am a fan of I Heart Faces on facebook, and they post photo challenges each week. I have never done one, but once I saw this weeks theme I knew I needed to enter this photo of Milo. Taken when he was 8 weeks old right after we had gotten him, it’s still one of my favorite photos of him 🙂



If you head over to I Heart Faces, you can see all the sweet furry faces entries for yourself! Enjoy! 🙂


These are a few of my favorite things!

1. Hot Chocolate Cookies

I was introduced to these cookies last Christmas, and oh. my. goodness. They are SO good!!

2 sticks room temperature butter
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 1/4 cups flour
4 packages Hot Chocolate Mix (not sugar free)
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup mini chocolate chips
2 cups mini marshmallows

Cream together butter and sugars. Whisk together dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Add eggs and vanilla to wet ingredients. Gradually add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Mix in chocolate chips. Bake at 350 degrees for 9-11 minutes. Add marshmallows to the top of each cookie for the last 2 minutes of baking time. YUM!! Recipe from Baked Bree.

2. Peppermint Bark – my favorite part of Christmas! LOVE this stuff!! (also made this yesterday, but I don’t have a picture!)

1 package semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 package white chocolate chips
1/2 tsp peppermint extract, divided
candy canes

Melt semi-sweet chocolate chips in double boiler, add 1/4 tsp peppermint extract. Spread over parchment lined cookie sheet. You want it to be pretty thin, so it’s easier to break. Sprinkle about 1 crushed candy cane over the chocolate. Refrigerate or freeze until firm. Melt white chocolate chips in a double boiler, add the other 1/4 tsp peppermint extract. Pour over hardened chocolate layer. Sprinkle 3-4 more crushed candy canes over the top. Refrigerate or freeze until hardened. Once hardened, break apart and keep in the refrigerator. Enjoy!

To crush the candy canes, I find it easiest to do them one at a time. Put in a ziploc bag, roll the bag so there’s lots of layers, then crush with a rolling pin. Repeat.

3. Sweet, sleeping, snuggly puppies. These two laid in their bed on the kitchen floor while I baked. So, so sweet!

And then they wanted me to throw the toy for them to fetch…. 🙂

Not to be left out from the cookie baking, I also made the puppies some dog treats yesterday. I got the recipe from Whole Foods.

1 banana, peeled
1 cup whole wheat flour
2/3 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
3 tablespoons peanut butter
1 egg, beaten

Mash banana in a bowl, add other ingredients and mix well. Roll out on a lightly floured surface and cut with cookie cutters. Transfer to baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 50 minutes. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

I cut them out with a Christmas Tree cookie cutter – it was one of the only ones I had that was small enough, and they will be sharing some with their puppy friends for Christmas 🙂 and I thought the green parsley flakes looked cool!

The puppies got to try some last night and they loved them! They are so funny (and opposite!) about treats. Milo will chomp down any treat the second you give it to him. If he can’t eat it fast enough, he will swallow it whole. Torq thinks it’s a new toy. He will run around with it, throw it in the air, pounce on it… it is hysterical! He also almost never wags his tail (weird, I know) but when he is playing with a treat his tail is wagging and wagging! Eventually he will give up and sit down and eat it. Makes me laugh every time!

As I was rolling these cookies out I was thinking back to all the years of making Christmas cookies with my cousins on my dads side. We would spend and entire day and make TONS of cookies. One of our favorites to make were cut-outs. when we got to the end of the ball of dough and couldn’t possibly roll it out one more time, we made one last cookie. Called a “Grouch Cookie”. Do you and your family have any traditions like that? What do you call the cookie that is just smush of dough at the end of a batch of cut-outs?? The Grouch Cookies were always the ones we HAD to taste test 🙂 Fun memories!


What kind of cookies are you making this holiday season? Who will you be baking with? Enjoy!!

Puppies, Ice Cream, and Target – random thoughts for you today!

Torq and Milo would like to say “Hello” from Kansas City!!

[This is the FIRST time I’ve taken out my camera since we moved! GASP! I miss it!!]

A couple experiences from yesterday:

– We went out for ice cream (actually, frozen yogurt) last night. This, friends, is love. I LOVE ice cream. Andy…. HATES ice cream. 🙂 But he makes the sacrifice for me. And I was a very happy girl!

– We stopped at Target afterwards. I went in the bathroom (sorry if that’s TMI) and there was a lady with 3 kids and an entire cart in there. I walked in as she was trying to back the cart out of the stall. It was quite the sight! I had to quickly get into a stall to not laugh right there out loud. 🙂

I think that’s all I have to say for today! I’m off to start making some Christmas cookies – YUM! I’ll post the recipes later 🙂