The most incredible Red Velvet cupcake and Cream Cheese Frosting EVER!

I know I haven’t posted the last day of 14 Days of Love yet but I just HAD to post this right away.  I have been a red velvet cupcake connoisseur for quite some time and I’ve tried many different recipes but this one takes the cake. Pun intended.  Hee hee.

Christina from Mele Cotte so very kindly shared her Red Velvet Cake recipe on her blog.  I adjusted the time a bit to accommodate the cupcakes.  I baked them at 350 for 15 minutes, rotating  half way.

While the cupcakes cooled, I whipped up some of this UH-MAZING cream cheese frosting from Not So Humble Pie.    It’s so light and fluffy and the perfect amount of sweetness.  Seriously.  Amazing.

Just thought I’d share that with ya’ll right quick.  I’ll post more about my fabulous day of love later.

Happy Valentine’s Day and Happy Red Velvet Cupcake love-ing day!!

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14 Days of Love – Day 11 Valentine Cards

What a day.   And not in a good way.

First,  I wake up to an over dramatic  starving 4yr old having a tantrum on my bedroom floor.  Two seconds later, a screaming toddler furious that he’s getting his diaper changed.  God forbid my husband changes the kid’s diaper first thing in the morning.  Seriously babe, what were you thinking?  All the while grumpy hubby trying his best NOT to be grumpy (which never works).  I guess that’s what happens when you have a whiny 4yr old AND a squirmy, screaming toddler who won’t sit still while you change his diaper so you get poop all over your hands all before 6:30 on a Saturday – kind of morning.  I’d be grumpy too.

Who am I kidding.  At this point, approximately  2 minutes after opening my eyes, I was grumpy too.

I thought for sure our morning would get better after all of our tummies were full. Buuut no.  Still whiny, still grumpy.

We couldn’t go outside and play (it’s been raining all day) so I was trying desperately to figure out a way to brighten our moods.  Then I remembered I had completely forgot about our Valentine Card craft for today. Gasp! I know.   I already had planned to make these for all the grandparents and aunts and uncles.

I thought it would be the perfect thing to get the boys out of their slump.  Who doesn’t like to paint and get all messy?

Well, apparently Andrew (1.5yrs) doesn’t.   Hubby held him and I started painting his feet.  He started screaming.  And squirming.  And screaming some more.   At the time I couldn’t bare to take pictures of the torture I was putting him through but looking back now, I SO wish I had taken the pictures.  Needless to say, footprints did NOT get painted.  I wasn’t about to try the hand prints.

Okay so Andrew wasn’t having it, but maybe Braden would have more fun.  Not so much.  All he wanted to do was everything I was telling him not to.  “Braden, stop flinging the paint brush.”  “Braden, don’t touch the wet paint.”  “Braden, wait for mommy to help you.”  Forget it.  I give up.

So there went that brilliant idea.  After my already exhausting day, I had no energy left to try anything else.  Cars 2 anyone?

Sorry, no cute-sy Valentine’s this year folks.  At least not today anyway.

Just so happens tonight is my night out with the girls.  Thank Goodness.  There is a glass of wine with my name on it!

14 Days of LOVE – Day 7 Rice Kiss-py Treats

I made these adorable little goodies last year and my hubby loved finding them in his lunch. Buuuut, as usual, I wanted to step it up a notch this year. I was actually looking for a recipe when stumbled upon these from Ali at Gimme Some Oven! Perfect!

Cake Batter Rice Crispy Treats! I just HAD to try them.

Since I am obviously all about Valentine’s Day right now, I had to put my own little Valentine twist on them. I made mine with the pink marshmallows and valentine sprinkles.

Cake Batter Rice Krispies Recipe
(orignal recipe From How Sweet Eats)

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 (10 oz.) bag of mini-marshmallows (I used a 10 oz bag of large pink marshmallows)
  • 1/4 cup yellow cake mix (the dry cake mix, not prepared into a batter!)
  • 6 cups crispy rice cereal
  • 1 (1.75 oz.) container of sprinkles

Method:

Melt butter in a large saucepan over low heat and add marshmallows. Stir until they begin to melt, adding in (dry) cake mix one spoonful at a time so its combined. Stir in cereal so it is completely coated with marshmallow mixture. Sprinkle in half of the sprinkles and mix. Press into a baking dish (any size will do) and top with remaining sprinkles. Let sit for about 30 minutes before cutting. I find spraying a knife with nonstick spray helps to cut them.

Ali’s Tip: I actually increased the cake batter to 1/3 cup for my recipe to give it a little extra cake batter kick (the 1/4 cup seemed just a little too subtle to me), but add as much in as you like!

***Note: Many readers have asked what to do with the remaining cake mix. If you would like to use it to whip up a batch of cake mix cookies, just measure out 6 oz. of the remaining cake mix, and combine it with 1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil, and 1 egg. Stir until mixed. Then form into cookie dough balls, and bake in a 350 degree oven for 10-12 minutes.***

Darci’s Tip: Use Ali’s tip! And make the cake batter cookies. They are just as heavenly 🙂

To make these into a kiss shape. Instead of pressing into a baking dish, scoop a spoonful into a small funnel sprayed with cooking spray. Press down until funnel is full

(Sorry about the blurry pic. It’s hard to press down rice crispy’s with one hand while holding a funnel AND a camera with the other!)

Cut out 6×6 squares of foil. Place rice crispy in center and wrap with foil. To make it really authentic, you can insert an adorable little love note to peek out of the top. (I just printed mine on regular ol’ paper and cut them out with scissors).

Personally I’m not a big fan of regular Rice Crispy treats but these new Rice Kiss-py treats with all of their cake batter goodness are my new favorite!!

14 Days of LOVE Day 6 – Valentine’s Garland

I was perusing pinterest the other day(surprise, surprise) for some additional valentine decor and there are SO many beautiful and wonderful Valentine garland’s out there!!

I love this adorable tissue paper heart garland from Erin over at Sunny Side Up

Valentines Day Mantle - Oh how I NEED a mantle!

And this super sweet newspaper garland from I don’t even know where! I’ve searched and searched and can’t find the original owner of this pic.

Newspaper Heart Garland

Or how about this fantastic burlap pennant banner from iwishedforyou. I am such a sucker for burlap!

burlap banner with text hearts

One of these days, I am going to make ALL of these. But for now, since I have a 4yr old to entertain, I settled on this adorable and super easy heart garland.

I found the pic-torial here. I cut out my strips of paper from the collection I downloaded from Sara at Moonsteam Design the other day.

I folded and B stapled. Here’s an action shot of him “pushing down hard with his muscles”. 🙂

My little nook is looking pretty festive, huh?!

14 Days of Love – Day 5 Superbowl and Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Nothing says LOVE like chocolate covered strawberries! And can you think of a better Superbowl snack?!

I tried to make little footballs like these from Shari’s Berries

6 Hand-Dipped Football Berries

buuuuuut mine didn’t turn out quite as cute, so I just drizzled chocolate on them instead.

Cute or not, they were absolutely delicious.  And gone before halftime.

Gearing up – “14 Days of Love” is almost here!!

We did “14 Days of Love” leading up to Valentine’s Day last year and it was a blast.  Not only was it incredible fun for my sweet boy but I truly believe it was one of the things (in addition to some serious praying) that brought my husband and I out of a very long rut.  More on that later but for now here is a little re-cap of some of my favorites. (These were posted on facebook during my pre-blog days.)  

Valentine Mailboxes – Every day we would fill each other’s mailboxes with little notes. “You are my favorite Valentine because…”   We will definitely be using these again this year!  

Rice KISSpie treats – Alright this was probably one of my Hubby’s favorites – Braden doesn’t care for them too much (he’s weird, I know).  Still super fun to make though 🙂 

Love Muffin Pizza’s – Totally adorable and delish!

Heart Crayons – Braden still colors with his.  They were so cheap easy to make that we handed them out to all of his friends at church.  

Valentine – You ROCK! – I think I may have to upgrade this one to the iPhone this year. wink wink

Oreo Cookie Balls of HEAVEN! – OMG these are UH-MAZING!  Definitely making these again!

Cookie cutter art

Sweet shovel

Candy grams – Probably my favorite.  However looking back now, I have no idea how I’m going to trump last years!  

This year’s will be packed full of some more “crafty” additions as well so stay tuned!  Here’s to a very Happy 14 Day’s of LOVE!!

 

**Blog Disclosure**

As you may have already read about in my “Hi there” intro, I’m fairly new to the crafting/DIY world.  I mean, I guess you could say I’ve always enjoyed being creative.  However since having my two little munchkins, I’ve taken on a whole new love for creating lovely things.  Things that inspire me and make me smile.  Things that make my boys smile.  Things that make my husband say “you made that?!”

On that note, I hate to write.  In fact, this blog is my first shot at writing anything that the public eye will see (other than facebook status updates, which totally don’t count).  I never know the right words to say or even if what I’m saying is making any sense to anyone else but me.  I worry about spelling, punctuation and sounding ridiculous. I have a serious problem with writing extremely looooooong run-on sentences (if you haven’t already noticed).  AND it take me FOR-EVER  to get it just so (going on 2 hours for this little post, geez!)

So why a blog?

I asked myself the same thing.   I’m not really sure but I’m hoping that this blog will inspire just one person and make them smile.  The way thousands of fabulous bloggers out there have done for me.

One run-on sentence at a time.

Give Thanks Gratitude Board

A few weeks ago, I was scouring blogland for some fun but thought provoking Thanksgiving activities.  I was looking for something that I could use to teach the boys (well Braden anyway) about what it means to be thankful.  I came across this adorable Give Thanks Gratitude Board from Karly at Jellybean Junkyard.  I pretty much followed her directions exactly so I didn’t take any step-by-step pics.  Here is my version.

I just love it!  Every night at the dinner table we are going to pull a card out of the slot and write something that we are thankful for.  The best part is, next year we can just flip the card over and write on the back!  It will be so fun to look back and see what we wrote year after year.   But for now, I can’t wait to see all the sweet and funny things the boys come up with.  Happy November!