Saturday, September 17, 2011

Chocolate Covered Cherry Cake Pops

If the title of this didn't catch your attention, you must not have a sweet tooth like I do!! I'm telling you, these things were incredible!!

First of all, I got myself a cake pop maker. It saves a HUGE amount of time. To make traditional cake pops, you have to bake a cake and then tear/shred it and then add something to bind it together before you can create the "balls" that become the pops. You have to freeze/refrigerate them and it's a very long process.

With my handy-dandy cake pop maker... I just put the raw batter into the machine, let it bake for about six minutes and then take the balls out. Then they go onto a cooling rack, the fridge (optional) and then you dip and cool in the fridge. EASY-PEASY... total process took like 35 minutes before putting into the fridge to cool and set.

Here's what you need for my delicious recipe (not really mine... I found it online):
A cute little cake pop maker (doughnut hole maker)
Yep. Four ingredients

You need to get a 9 oz box of cake mix. Jiffy (made in Chelsea, MI) has the perfect sized boxes and they're found at most stores. Then you need one egg white, 1/2 cup of marichino cherry juice (I had cherries here but needed 1/2 cup of juice, so I had to buy more) and you favorite chocolate for dipping.

Cut a bunch of maraschino cherries (you can do as many as you'd like) and put off to the side

Dump the box of mix into a bowl and add the egg white and 1/2 cup of cherry juice (INSTEAD of the water that the box calls for)-- mix it really well and then add the cherries and mix again

You don't HAVE to spray your maker with PAM but it's helpful if you do... then you fill up each hole with the batter

Close the lid and let it work its magic for about six or seven minutes.
This is what the balls will look like.

Put on a cooling rack to firm up and settle

They actually firm up quite nicely pretty quickly
Melt your chocolate and start to dip each ball in the melted chocolate (I needed an entire box for 18 balls)
Place on wax paper (I put the wax paper on a small cookie sheet) and then put into the refrigerator for at least an hour to set

Absolutely delicious and super easy!

You can add a sucker stick to make it a "real" cake pop... but if it's just you eating them at home, don't waste the stick.

Day 259

September 16th, 2010
September 16th, 2011

What a beautiful day!! We had temperatures around the 60 degree mark... it was perfect. It was a bit overcast, but really, it was just the most welcomed temperature change and made me realize that fall really is only four days away!! Sometimes being in the South, it feels like it takes FOREVER for it to finally cool off... but I can't complain. I prefer the warmer weather to the cold. Soon enough I'll hear everyone bitching and complaining about how cold it is.  ;-)

Steve had to catch an 8:00 flight this morning and when he went to leave the house, the Beast wouldn't start. DEAD BATTERY. So instead, he had to take Chuck Dio. Normally it wouldn't matter, but we had plans to go to Lacey's this morning and play with the girls. I texted her and let her know that I was sans-car and she and I made plans for them to come over here in the afternoon.

Suzanne came and cleaned and the house NEEDED it in the worse way. It's nice and clean and wonderful again. Here are some pictures of Gus from this morning before his nap:
Quite pleased with himself that he can get on top of the table...

Coming down the stairs

We had lunch and I made Gus chicken nuggets and smile potatoes. He ate a TON of chicken and then crammed it all in his mouth like a chipmunk.

The girls came over to play around 2 and stayed for a few hours. Gus had a great time with them and I enjoyed the visit with Lacey.

Within seconds of their arrival... the sippy stealer had his first victim

Lacey had graham crackers...

Gus and his girls just hanging out

Reagen (on right) was his favorite but now he's decided that he prefers Hadley (middle)

He put his head on her lap and she was stroking his head... it was so cute!

Gus and Hadley reading

So cute

After the girls left I put Gus down for his afternoon nap. I got some schoolwork done, but this Pharmacology unit is a BITCH. I'm 70% done and should be able to finish it tomorrow.

Gus got up around 6 and we headed down for dinner. He had the rest of his chicken and potatoes from lunch and an apple. He ate all of it. :-)

After dinner we listened to music and danced and Gus practiced his sommersault skills.

 Then we went outside to enjoy the cool air and we played out there for a bit...

Then we came inside and watched an episode of The Backyardigans and Gus curled up in my lap and it made my day.

Steve got home around 9:45 and we had a late dinner together and talked about his day and then we watched an episode of Intervention. Tomorrow we're going to the 2nd Annual Holly Springs Chili Cook-off and then getting a new battery for the Beast. I have a nail appointment and I'm getting my eyebrow waxed too. :)

See you tomorrow! (I guess technically it's later today now that it's 12:06am!)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Day 258

September 15th, 2010
Today was a pretty good day. Gus got up around 7:30ish and we went downstairs and had breakfast. I was not able to get a shower this morning which totally sucked. We played for a bit and then headed over to Kristen's for our weekly 9:30 playdate.

Gus and Grace do so well together. It's fun to watch them interact and learn to share with each other. Gus is so easy-going that it's easy for him to get along with other children. If someone wants what he's got, he usually just gives it up and doesn't fuss. Occasionally, he'll decide to keep the object just the piss the other kid off, but usually it's not a big deal and he just goes with the flow. I hope his disposition stays and helps him with peer relationships as he gets older. 

Mind you, I don't want him to be a doormat, and just let others walk all over him... but I hope he stays as even-keeled and easy going as he is now as a toddler.

After Kristen's, we came home and had lunch and then Gus napped for a while. I was able to start back up with my Pharmacology until... it's LONG!! I worked for more than two hours this afternoon. I had thought about working on it after I blog, but I'm going to just go to bed. I'm tired.

Here are pictures from this morning and afternoon:
Breakfast on the screened porch

Playing in the exersaucer at Grace's... it was funny to see him in there!!

I taught Grace how to do a somersault! Gus did one all by himself today and I was so very proud!!!

Looking at herself in a tiny mirror

After his nap he was king of the livingroom!

Coming down the stairs

Dinner at Mamma Mia's

In the car on the way home from Rita's

We went to Mamma Mia's for dinner. I need to learn my lesson... each time I've strayed off my usual and ordered the special I've HATED it. Tonight I had the white eggplant parm and it was absolutely GROSS.  :(  On the positive, Gus had a GIANT piece of pizza and loved it. 

After dinner, we headed to Rita's for some frozen ice. It was delicious! I hadn't had Rita's in a really long time and it was just perfect.

So yesterday on Facebook, friends of mine congratulated my friend Kristen Curley (I taught with her at Oak Grove) for being WRAL's Teacher of the Week. I messaged her and asked how she was selected... was it a nomination or because she was one of the county Teacher of the Year finalists. She wrote me back and said that she was pretty sure that it was from the TOY deal. Then she told me that back in October, WRAL came to Oak Grove to film me (YES... ME) for the Teacher of the Week!! I didn't know this!!

She said that they came to film me, but because I wasn't teaching there anymore, and Oak Grove had just voted her as their 2011-2012 Teacher of the Year, my old principal sent them to her room to film her. When they got to her room, she couldn't be filmed because she was going on a field trip. However... she assumed that I knew this (I didn't) and she wanted to let me know that I was actually selected as the WRAL Teacher of the Week for a week in October of 2010.

Isn't that awesome??? :)  I guess I'm just glad to know it! Obviously since I wasn't teaching at the time, they couldn't use me, but it's still nice to know that had I been working, I would have had my 30 seconds of fame!!

Tomorrow we're going to Lacey's for a playdate with the girls. It's supposed to be a high of 63!!! I'm so excited I can't stand it!!!

Here are other pictures of Gus from a year ago:

See you tomorrow!