Sunday, September 11, 2011

Baby did a bad, bad thing!

Several months ago I blogged about my failed attempt at making Oreo stuffed chocolate chip cookies. I have to say I was really bummed when they didn't work out because in my mind they were going to be EPIC and would transform me into some sort of kitchen diva! After the whole debacle I decided to step away from the stuffed cookie thing for awhile but today the urge struck. I was overwhelmed by the desire, nay, the need to make some sort of baked good stuffed with Oreo deliciousness so I headed over to my newest obsession, Pinterest, for some inspiration. I found the following, I made the following, I ate the following and I will be taking the following to school tomorrow!

All the images *as well as the basic recipe* were taken from, because I'm lame and left my camera at school. I attempted to capture a few shots on my phone but yeah, not so much! Amanda's site has lots of great recipes and photography, so you should take a few minutes and check it out!

So without further ado, here is what I found myself making this afternoon!! Chocolate Chip Cookie and Oreo Fudge Brownies!!!

How incredible do these bad boys look? They combine three of my favorite desserts so you know they're going to be fabulous! Thanks Amanda!!!
To get the ball rolling you need to make some chocolate chip cookie dough. I used the Nestle Tollhouse recipe because it is my favorite. Once the dough is ready get out a 9x13 pan and line it with wax paper; this will make removal from the pan so much easier. When the pan is lined, pour in the dough and spread it out so it covers the bottom of the pan like such...
Step 1: Cookie dough crust

Next, top the cookie dough with several rows of Oreos...
Step 2: Layer Oreos over the cookie dough
Whip up some brownie batter, according to the package directions and pour over the Oreos...
Step 3: Pour brownie batter over the Oreos.
Spread the brownie batter evenly over the Oreos. In her recipe, Amanda was very daring and added 1/4 cup of hot fudge sauce to the batter...
Step 4: Evenly spread the brownie batter over the Oreos and bake at 350 for 40 to 45 minutes

Bake these at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes. These are likely to be some of the longest 45 minutes of your life but your patience will be rewarded with these...

I ate one and it was FABULOUS!!! These are definitely not something that you can keep just laying around the house so I plan on taking them to school and sharing the deliciousness with my co-workers.

If you make these I promise you won't regret it one bit! I do suggest that you wait for a time when you know you'll have a ton of people coming over otherwise you'll eat them all yourself and that would be a bad, bad thing!

***This is obviously a lighthearted and frivolous post on what is a very somber day for our country. I would like to take a moment to thank everyone who acted so bravely and heroically on September 11, 2001 and to all the men and women who have sacrificed so much for our country in the days since. I'm a extremely grateful for your service and pray for your speedy return home! May you and your families be blessed!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Pinterest Craft Ideas (Autumn Edition #1)

Pinterest. I've mentioned this super addictive site several times in my last few blogs and I'm going to mention it again today. A lot.Because I love it. I love it more than my luggage *said in a southern accent a la Steel Magnolias*

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the awesomeness that is Pinterest, allow me to fill you in. Pinterest is a virtual pin board that allows you to find, organize and share all sorts of fabulous things from craft ideas, recipes, home decor and even entire outfits! It is a complete time suck BUT you walk away with great ideas and a ton of motivation and inspiration. Here are a few Autumn draft projects I'd love to tackle in the next few weeks!

MUST make immediately!!!
How cute (and simple) are these yarn candy corns? I wasn't able to track down the person responsible for these or detailed instructions on how to make them but they appear pretty straight forward. You could use some of those foam forms or even some sturdy cardboard. I love the button tops! All around simple, inexpensive and CUTE!!!

Fabulous Fall Rag Wreath from The Simple Standard shop on Etsy
I am in absolute L-O-V-E with this wreath. At first glance I thought this was tissue paper but upon further inspection it is actually made out of strips of fabric. You can find similar wreaths (bummer but this wreath is sold out) on another favorite site of mine, Etsy in The Simple Standard shop. I'm sure this is much more time consuming then the candy corn cones but I still plan on giving this a shot!

DIY Halloween Light Garland courtesy of Good Housekeeping!
Most of us have strands of clear Christmas just lying around our homes waiting anxiously for the month of December to roll around; well here's a way to give those suckers a little more use! Grab some Dixie cups (mouth wash size), adorable scrapbook paper and those aforementioned lights and make the above now!!! Seriously... holy genius Batman! Or Good Housekeeping I should say.  I love this idea because it's going to be relatively inexpensive, super simple and easy to change up for the different seasons and holidays.

I'm in LOVE with Amanda Buccola's yarn wrapped letters!
I'm on a yarn kick; maybe it has something to do with my overwhelming desire to wear big, chunky knit sweaters even though it's still in the 80s. Anyway, I think these are too cute! Amanda at TheWhimsicle had these in her Etsy shop, and while they're no longer for sale I thank her for the inspiration with which they have left me. I love the color combination she used to declare her LOVE and think it would be just darling for AUTUMN or HARVEST or BE THANKFUL. Swap out the green and gray for black and you would have a fantastic palate for BOO or EEK.

Visit Itz Fitz over at Etsy for more insanely awesome yarn wreaths!!!
And here's some more yarn preciousness! In general I love wreaths and these cuties are not helping! Can you guess which of the four shown is my favorite? If you said the purple one, well... winner winner chicken dinner!!! Itz Fitz is the genius behind these gorgeous wreaths and her Etsy shop is chock full of even more goodies. Her creativity is boundless and gives me something to strive for.

Well there you go ladies, and possibly gents, a wrap up (heehee, that's funny cause some many of these things are wrapped) of some of the fab things you can find on Pinterest that you can either buy or make yourself.

Enjoy your weekend and I'll see you back here real soon!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tasty Tuesday

Today was one of those days that seemed to go on forever. You know the kind; nothing horrible happens and it isn't a crazy, challenging, hair pulling day but it just doesn't seem to end! And wishing it was over only makes things worse! Today left me with just enough motivation to go to Pilates (which was awesome by the way; thanks Anna) and absolutely no motivation to cook. Normally I'd suck it up and cook something but I decided to take the night off and indulge in a long lingering craving for Chinese food. As I sat on the couch eating my Sweet and Sour Chicken I decided it was high time to plan out the rest of this week's meals. I hopped on to Pinterest (seriously I'm addicted to this site and I will be a pusher and try to get you addicted too) and took a look at my FOOD! pins for some inspiration. Below I'm listing the tasty treats I plan on making this week! Enjoy!!!
How fantastic does this peach margarita look?
 Cheers to the ladies at We Are Not Martha!
To starts things off... a little summer refreshment! This peach margarita from the lovely ladies over at We Are Not Martha looks fabulous! I love peaches; they're so juicy and sweet and even better so refreshing! While this is a traditional margarita it can be made sans tequila; try some Sprite or sparkling water instead.

A jalapeno popper in sandwich form? Get out!!!
Ben loves jalapeno poppers so when I stumbled across this recipe, again from the crafty girls at We Are Not Martha, I got super excited!!! Probably more so than is ok because it is only a sandwich! But come on; how beautiful does this look! Thick, crusty bread, cream cheese, bacon and jalapenos. Mmmm, I just made my own mouth water. I think this is what we'll be having for dinner tomorrow!

Baked risotto!?! Miracles do happen!
 Risotto. One of the most luscious, decadent and rich dishes ever known to grace mankind's palate. For all its deliciousness risotto is also UBER time consuming!!! If you've ever made risotto you know what I mean. An hour of standing over the stove stirring and pouring and stirring and pouring. You are the risotto's slave; it knows it, you know it and your frizzy hair lets the rest of the world know it.  This recipe from Dabbling in the Delicious, is amazing because 1) it tastes incredible and 2) it BAKES IN THE OVEN!!! No seriously, you bake it which frees you up for more important things like giving yourself a pedicure, watching a DVR'd episode of the Closer or taking a power nap.
Jen over at My Own Road had this fabulous idea.
Must say... LOVE IT!!!
Strawberries are a definite star of the summer season and I think twist on strawberry shortcake is genius! I dare you to go out into the world and find one person who doesn't love a kabob; especially when that kabob alternates strawberries with angel food cake and is drizzled with chocolate. If you don't like strawberries or have allergies try with raspberries, blackberries or even peach and nectarines.

Well there you go one and all, a peek into what I'll be serving up at home this week. Enjoy these last few weeks of summer and use as many of those gorgeous fruits and veggies as you can!

Monday, September 5, 2011

A Tasty Recipe... for your shower!!!

I have a confession to make. Are you ready for it? I love lemons. There I said it. The smell is so invigorating and inviting and fresh and clean (oh, did anyone else have that Outkast song start running through their head?). I adore the many tastes of lemon; tart, sour, sweet. I also love how many uses lemons have outside of cooking recipes so, today I'm going to share one of those uses... SUGAR SCRUB!!!

Sugar scrubs are fabulous. They feel so luxurious, smell so fabulous and leave your skin feeling so soft. I've been interested in attempting my own for awhile now but thought, "naw, it'll be really hard and complicated and I have no time for that." Well, you know what? Sugar scrubs are like the easiest thing ever to make. No joke! So simple!

I found this recipe during one of my (way too long) pinterest browsing sessions. *Pinterest, for those of you who haven't already been seduced, is an amazing site that will be the subject of a future blog I'm sure. If you have like 4 hours to kill I suggest you check it out!* Okay, okay... back to recipe. This was taken from Under The Table and Dreaming blog, which has a ton of great ideas and is just all around adorable. The ingredients couldn't be simpler; sugar, olive oil and lemon juice. That's it! How easy is that. Chances are you already have these things at home!

Here's whatcha do...
1. Juice 2-3 lemons for a total of 4 tbsp lemon juice
2.  Grab a big bowl
3. Pour in 2 1/2 cups white sugar
4. Pour in 1 cup extra virgin olive oil (you can use light if you are put off by the smell)
5. Stir sugar and oil together well
6. Add in lemon juice and stir again
7. Scoop into a container with a lid that can be securely shut.

***This makes enough to fill a 12 oz. container, or two 6 oz containers and so on and so forth.

Lemon Sugar Scrub taken from
I love that Stephanie put hers in a mason jar, a perfect choice! And if I had mason jars in my home I would have done the same thing! Instead I put mine in one of those see through kitchen storage jars meant for flour, coffee or sugar, which technically this is so I'm golden!

The lemon scent is subtle, sweet and, in my opinion, absolutely perfect. Because this has oil in it, you'll have to remember to give it a stir on occasion. You'll also want to watch out for slippery tubs!!!

Please make this for yourself and for loved ones. It's instant cheer and a piece of summer that can last through those long, cold winters!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

New (School) Year Resolutions!

Once again I've taken a long break from the blog to do lots of other things. I'm happy to announce that Ben and I are totally moved in and the house is almost set up to my liking! School has started and I'm having a blast reconnecting with my co-workers and catching up with my students. Moving up to 8th grade wasn't something I was thrilled about as last year wrapped up but I think it's going to be a blast. Ben and I have put his Big Green Egg (a giant ceramic smoker) to good use as we've hosted our first of many football Saturdays.  It's been a very busy August and September is shaping up to be crazy as well. I'm so excited for this year!

I've been making some New (School) Year Resolutions and one of them is to pay more attention to the blog. I started this to share recipes and what not and I've been a total slacker in that regard. Bad Megan! I think I'm going to have "spotlight" days where I highlight things I love, want, or just generally think are awesome. I'm open to suggestions of things you'd like to see on the blog; so don't be shy, share what's on  your mind!

Another resolution is to pack my lunch every day. I spent a lot of money buying lunch in the cafeteria because I forgot to pack a lunch last year. I'm not sure how well acquainted you are with jr. high cafeteria but to say it sucks would be a MAMMOTH understatement.

I am also going to work on being more organized; in my classroom and at home. I have an awesome "supply station" set up in my classroom and it's working out great. This was something I dreamed up because, once again, my room plays host to a giant printer which sits atop a giant desk with many pullout shelves. I'll post pictures when the super cute labels I ordered come in. The kids are loving because everything is in one place and all the goodies are store in brightly colored little tin pails.

Keeping with the organization theme, I plan on tackling the pantry and under counter cabinets. I've become slightly obsessed with Jen over at iheart organizing. In fact, she's the one designing my awesome labels. I can't wait to see how they turn out!!!

Alright, I'm going to play around with my new computer (big shout out to Mom and Dad for my awesome birthday present) and enjoy Ben and Brian's super witty banter. I'll be back tomorrow with a fun recipe. Enjoy your Saturday!!!