Month: April 2014 (page 1 of 7)

Just For Fun: Party Pleaser

A lot of times I lean on the same one dish to bring to someone’s home or a summer outdoor barbeque.  The same reliable Cooling Rack Bakery cupcakes from Whole Foods or a big bowl of fresh, chopped fruit.  While both options are still great, they have become somewhat stale.  So, if you are looking for something new, like me, try these easy to make mini-chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches on a stick; sure to be a party pleaser.

lollipop ice cream sandwich on cutting board blog pic

Things You Will Need:

  • One batch of mini-chocolate chip cookies
  • Vanilla ice cream
  • Lollipop sticks
  • Wax paper

cookies on cookie sheet blog pic{You can make your cookies from scratch or buy pre-cut mini-chocolate chip cookie dough at your local grocery store to speed up the process}

ice cream scoop blog pic{Make sure to let the cookies cool completely, otherwise the ice cream will melt too quickly when you are putting them together}

Instructions:

1.  Make your mini-chocolate chips cookies and let cool.  Line a baking sheet with wax paper.

2.  Scoop vanilla ice cream onto the flat side of one mini-chocolate chip cookie.  Gently press another cookie (the flat side) on top.

3.  Use a spoon to go around the edge of the cookie, scrapping the excess ice cream and smoothing the sides as you go.

4.  Place the lollipop stick, centered, in the ice cream and immediately transfer to the baking sheet.  Repeat with all ice cream sandwiches until complete.

5.  Freeze overnight.

lollipop ice cream sandwiches on cookie sheet blog pic

Serve them on a lollipop stand, like this easy-to-make one seen here on my blog to make the presentation as great as they taste.

lollipop ice cream sandwich final blog pic{Leave the mini-chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches on a stick in the freezer until the last minute and place in the holes right before you head out the door or before serving}

Enjoy!

Quick Craft: Lollipop Stand

Although I still have not set out to make a cake pop of my own, and although I still have never tried one either, their rise in popularity has been tremendous.  They have been featured at parties and in magazines; they even debuted on the shelves at Starbucks.  The thing I did pick up from this trend is how they are often displayed.  The simple stand can have so many uses from carrying the aforementioned cake pops, to holding decorative lollipops, to colorful sticks of cotton candy, to providing an easy way to carry mini-treats, like chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches to serve at your next event.

lollipop stand supplies blog pic

Things You Will Need:

  • Lollipop sticks
  • Pointed wooden or metal skewer
  • Floral craft foam
  • Wrapping paper of your choice
  • Tape
  • Scissors

wrapping and foam blog pic

{I chose a plain paper like this brown kraft paper so that I can reuse this stand several times, no matter the occassion}

holes blog pic{You can use a ruler if needed to space out the holes evenly}

Instructions:

1.  Wrap the floral craft foam like you would a present in any color or style wrapping paper your choose.  Keep in mind the theme or color scheme, if any, of the party you are making this for.

2.  Use the pointed wooden or metal skewer to poke holes in the wrapped foam.  Spread the holes evenly apart and make sure there is enough room between each for whatever you are going to be displaying.

3.  Add your lollipops, cake pops, etc.

lollipop ice cream sandwich final blog pic

Enjoy!

A Few Of Emma’s Favorite Things {This Week}…

{A few of my daughter, Emma’s favorite things this week that she either just discovered or already knows she couldn’t do without or some kid stuff that her mommy may love even more than she does}

easter sunday{The best part of this list: the following four things that Emma loves this week are all free}

 

1.    The Park – We visit our nearby park probably five days out of the week.  Sometimes we go in the morning after our walk.  Sometimes when it’s cloudy, so we have the place to ourselves or in the afternoon when it’s bustling with fresh, new faces.  But it is always open and there is always an abundance of things there to keep a curious toddler happy.
park blog pic 2

2.     Stopping To Smell The Flowers – When our family took a trip to Maui this fall, we were greeted by their famous lush landscape upon arrival and everywhere we went were surrounded by deep green hedges with big flowers equally bright in color.  It was there that Emma first fell in love with the fragrant buds and has been on the lookout for flowers here at home ever since.  Whether it’s in the market or at the park or on the lined walkway of someone’s home, my daughter will stop and lean in close enough for her nose to touch the soft petals, taking in that sweet scent.  And I love to watch her enjoy such a simple pleasure.

stop to smell the flowers blog pic

3.     Story-Time – I encourage every mom (and dad) I come across to check out their public library for a schedule of story-telling for babies or toddlers.  When their attention span allows, they sit and listen to stories, some interactive, some told in song.  And when they can no longer sit still, toys are spilled out onto the rug and put to use.  I love the sort of regimen it gives Emma each Friday morning.  It’s also a great way to meet other kids and parents and best of all (like the rest of this week’s list), it’s free.

story time blog pic

4.     Bath-Time – One of my daughter’s favorite places to be is in the tub.  She hears the word “bath” and her face literally lights up.  She dives into her little routine of grabbing her shampoo from under the sink and picking out a handful of toys to join her.  Sometimes I take a book in with me and and let her linger a little longer.

bathtime books blog pic

Enjoy!

It’s A New Dawn, It’s A New Day

haleakala sunrise blog pic{We woke up in the middle of the night in order to catch this unforgettable sunrise at Haleakala National Park in Kula, Hawaii}

That little line from the Nina Simone classic has become sort of a mantra of late.  A reminder that no matter how big a fail today has seemed, no matter how many tasks still remain on the perpetual to-do list, that the sun will set.  The sun will rise.  That tomorrow is a punctual, reliable friend.  It will be there, without a shadow of a doubt, and, if lucky enough, so will you.  So, take that new dawn for what it is.  Take that new day and do whatever it is, whatever it requires to get yourself that much closer to the person you want to be.

 

Happy Monday!

In The Kitchen: Nilla Wafers

A few years back, I walked into a friend’s home to find her making these tiny sandwiches using flat, round discs.  Luckily, I got there in time to help put the finishing touches on each of them.  It wasn’t that it was my first encounter with ice cream sandwiches or Nilla wafers, but it never dawned on me to use something other than two chocolate chip cookies to serve as bookends.

nilla wafers sandwiches final blog pic

These bite sized desserts are a great way to indulge in a sweet treat without going overboard.  And they are so easy to make, no baking required, although I hardly mind an excuse to whip up a batch of cookies.

nilla wafers sandwiches birds eye view blog pic

Ingredients:

  • Nilla wafers
  • Ice cream in any or all of your favorite flavors
  • Fun toppings, like mini-chocolate chips, rainbow sprinkles, sea salt, or chopped almonds, to name a few

nilla wafers sandwiches sprinkle blog pic

Instructions:

1.  Line a baking sheet with wax paper.  Place Nilla wafers, round side down, flat side up, on the sheet.

2.  Scoop your choice of ice cream onto one of the wafers and press the other wafer gently on top.

3.  Use a spoon or a knife to run around the perimeter of the sandwich, scrapping the excess ice cream and smoothing the edges as you go.

4.  Roll the sandwich over sprinkles or chips or your preferred toppings, so that they stick to the ice cream.  Place in the freezer immediately after completing and for best results, leave in overnight.

 

nilla zoomed blog pic

{My Favorite Combinations}

1.  Ben and Jerry’s strawberry cheesecake goes great with the Nilla wafers, no need for toppings!

2.  Haagen Dazs’ dulce de leche with a bit of sea salt is delicious.

3.  Ben and Jerry’s chocolate fudge brownie, no extras.

4.  Plain old vanilla (any brand) with rainbow sprinkles or mini-chocolate chips is classic.

 

Enjoy!

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