A meaningful message...

There are fine things which you mean to do some day, under what you think will be more favorable circumstances. But the only time that is surely yours is the present, hence this is the time to speak the word of appreciation and sympathy, to do the generous deed, to forgive the fault of a thoughtless friend, to sacrifice self a little more for others. Today is the day in which to express your noblest qualities of mind and heart, to do at least one worthy thing which you have long postponed, and to use your God-given abilities for the enrichment of someone less fortunate. Today you can make your life significant and worthwhile.

Grenville Kleiser, 1868-1935

American Author

I've got a bunch of recipes to share with you so I'll be back later!


Five Faves Friday (on Saturday)

I haven't blogged my Five Faves Friday in a while so I'm totally due! I'm just one day late.

I just can't go another minute without sharing this find with you. It is by far my favorite find this year and it just goes to show you that I have spent the first part of 2009 in the kitchen, not my scrap room...

the kapoosh knife block

My biggest pet peeve in the kitchen lately has been my knife block. The slots are just not the right sizes for my knives, especially my big santoku knives. Problem solved. This knife block has no slots. You just put the knives in any which way! Love it!!

I'm also loving this pot. It's a big oval shape so you just throw your long pasta in it without breaking it. Nate is obsessed with "ghetti" so we use it a lot!

I love Bake It Pretty. I've been ordering lots of cupcake wrappers and cupcake boxes from them. Check them out!

I can't get enough of Chef Tyler Florence. He has this show on Food Network where he has the "Ultimate" recipe for all of your favorite dishes. I recently made his Chicken Cordon Bleu. Absolutely to die for!! You have to use the best ingredients when you cook for the best results and Tyler Florence always does.

I was given a challenge recently from my good friend Jenny L. to make a big, soft, chewy Snickerdoodle cookie. Well I came up with one that is pretty darn good. I'm not a big fan of the Snickerdoodle because there is no chocolate in them (lol) but everybody I gave them to loved them! Now my friends are blaming me for their weight gain! Whatever! So this is a fave of my family and friends.

Here's the recipe:

Lori's Big, Soft, Chewy Snickerdoodles

2 sticks unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar
3 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup Hershey's cinnamon chips

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Mix butter, 1 1/2 cups sugar and eggs thoroughly in a large bowl.
Combine flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl.
Blend dry ingredients into butter mixture. Fold in cinnamon chips.
Chill dough
Meanwhile, mix 3 tablespoons sugar, and 3 teaspoons cinnamon in a small bowl.
Scoop tablespoon size globs of dough and coat by gently rolling balls of dough in the sugar/cinnamon mixture and bake 12 minutes.
Remove from pan immediately to cooling racks.

Those are my faves! Hope you love them!

Special K's job is going great. One of the company he reps is a candy company which makes the most amazing chocolate. Starts with a d and is a type of bird. YUM! Loving the samples!


just a quote...

As a child
I was told and believed
that there was a treasure
buried beneath every rainbow.

I believed it so much that
I have been unsuccessfully
chasing rainbows
most of my life.

I wonder why
no one ever told me
that the rainbow
and the treasure
were both
within me.

Gerald G. Jampolsky, MD


A tragic death...

I had a wonderful time tonight with my best friends at Bunco. I came home, got my jammies on and read a few of my favorite baseball blogs. I didn't expect to read about a very tragic accident which took the life of a young pitcher for the Angels. Please read Cyn Donnelly's post here and Ted's blog here.

God Bless Nick Adenhart and his friends and loved ones.
I am so very saddened.

Cupcake Factory...

That's what my kitchen will be today. I'm making cupcakes for Bunco tonight, for Easter Sunday and well, just because it's FUN!!

I'll be making the Red Velvet, Chocolate Red Wine and these...

Carrot Cake Cupcakes


2 cups sugar (I use superfine sugar for baking)
1 1/3 cups vegetable oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 extra-large eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour (I use Softasilk cake flour)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
3 cups grated carrots (less than 1 pound)
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

For the frosting:

3/4 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 pound powdered sugar, sifted


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat the sugar, oil, and vanilla together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the eggs, 1 at a time. In another bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low speed, add 1/2 of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Add the grated carrots, and chopped nuts to the remaining flour, mix well, and add to the batter. Mix until just combined.

Line muffin pans with paper liners. Scoop the batter into 22 muffin cups until each is 3/4 full. Bake at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F and cook for a further 35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a rack.

For the frosting, cream the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the sugar and beat until smooth.

When the cupcakes are cool, frost them very generously and serve.



Happy New Year!

For most baseball fans, yesterday was New Years Day.


170 days since October 19th.
55.2 inches of snow in Boston.
34 games in Florida.
1 Opening Day postponement.
It's about time.


The Red Sox were rained out at Fenway yesterday so today is Opening Day! I'm watching the pre game show now and I am so excited for the first game of the season! I can only watch half of it and then I have to go to work so I will DVR the second half... bummer!!!

Go Sox! I love ya!

Peace, Love & Baseball!


I'm just quickly checking in to post a few quotes that I got in my inbox today. I'll be back later to post some wicked yummy recipes!

Serving only one's self is a petty and unsatisfying ambition. But serve a cause greater than self-interest and you will know a happiness far more sublime than the fleeting pleasure of fame and fortune.

John McCain

The place to improve the world is first in one's own heart and head and hands, and then work outward from there.

Robert Pirsig

How true! ♥♥♥


Can a cupcake make you cry?

These cupcakes can! They were so good, they brought tears of joy to my eyes!

Chocolate Red Wine Cupcakes with Mascarpone Icing

Recipe is inspired by Silvana Nardone
From Every Day with Rachael Ray
September 2007

I made a few little changes.

Makes approximately two dozen cupcakes.


1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup good quality milk or dark chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup water
2 sticks (8 ounces)unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar (I like to use superfine sugar for baking)
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cups flour (I use Softasilk cake flour)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup full bodied red wine
Two 8-ounce containers mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
Red grapes, halved, and chocolate curls for garnish


1. Preheat the oven to 350ยบ. Line 2 muffin pans with baking liners.
2. In a large glass measuring cup, microwave water until boiling, about 2 minutes. Add the cocoa powder and chocolate pieces. Whisk until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is combined. Whisk in red wine.
3. In a large bowl, cream the butter and granulated sugar. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until blended. Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt and mix until just combined. Add the chocolate mixture a little at a time, mixing well between each addition, until the batter is smooth. Divide among the muffin cups, filling each about three-quarters full. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Let cool in the pan.
4. Lightly beat the mascarpone, then add the powdered sugar and beat until creamy. Remove the cooled cupcakes from the pan, spread each with icing and top with a grape half and chocolate curls.

*To make the chocolate curls, just use a vegetable peeler. Works great!

These are hands down, the best cupcakes I have ever tasted!


Today is...

World Autism Awareness Day!


Go HERE to learn more.

I'm going to go HERE to download a Wow Wow Wubbsy coloring book for Nate today!

Love to you!
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