Pinspired Reviews- Baking Edition

Why hasn’t anyone been giving me a hard time for not letting you know what my weekly pinspired activity has been? Haha! You mean your life doesn’t revolve around my blog and…. me? Well, just so you know, I have been doing my self-required weekly Pinterest activity. I won’t overwhelm you all at once, so today you get my reviews of some baking I did from recipes found on my Pinterest cooking and baking board.

I was in charge of desserts for Easter and I thought this recipe for Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cupcakes would go over well with the kids.

Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cupcakes (and photo) from BS in the Kitchen

I didn’t have a ton of time and my big cupcake pan is in storage. So instead of doing them 6 at a time I decided to just make it into a cake. I did an eight inch double layer and it was delicious! The frosting calls for a lot of vanilla extract, but I don’t mind (although Sarah, I owe you a new bottle!).

A couple tips/ adjustments I made… I didn’t use the butter flavoring in the frosting. There is already a ton of butter in the recipe and I didn’t have any nor have I ever so I didn’t want to make the purchase for the one teaspoon called for. I also found the frosting to be super thick so in the end I added some regular milk. I think if I make this again I may try and just use milk instead of opening up a whole can of condensed milk just for this. And make sure you get the cereal crumbs super tiny or you will end up with some soggy cereal chunks in your frosting that are a little questionable when you bite one.

I decided that this would be the perfect dessert or side for a brunch and I brought the leftovers to our Easter breakfast at church and they cleaned it up. Delicious!

The other dessert I baked was this Chocolate Chip Cookie Delight. Oh. My. Goodness.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Delight (and photo) from Taste of Home

I did not have any leftovers of this one. It was so delicious. Andrew has been pretty strict about no sugar lately, but he has requested that I make this again in a couple weeks so that he can have some. I didn’t put nuts on top (I did chocolate powder instead) just because I wasn’t sure if everyone would like the nuts. I think they would be delicious though. The only tip I have is to make sure you have time to chill it properly so it doesn’t get too runny. Oh, and I did read in the reviews to take caution not to over-bake the cookie because it will get too hard to cut. I almost was afraid it was going to be too doughy but I’m so glad I took their advice. Not only was it easier to cut, but I think the softer cookie made the overall dessert better.

What have you been baking lately? I’m always up for some great recipes!

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Pinspired

Pinspired. That is what I’ve decided to call my weekly Pinterest inspired project. I really have loved finding so many fun things to do, and I’m so excited about how many I’ve done. Today’s post never even made it to my boards before I tried it! I found out around 1:00 yesterday that I wouldn’t have anyone baking for youth group that night. I wasn’t too worried because we have a little stash of store bought cookies that I could use, and I wasn’t feeling up to baking myself. I had just sat down for my naptime Pinterest fix and saw this recipe for Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars from The Girl Who Ate Everything. The pin description caught my eye because it said they were made using a yellow cake mix, and I just happened to have an extra one (and no frosting to go with it) so it seemed perfect. (On the subject of pin descriptions…. leave them! I am so much more likely to look at something if there is a quick note saying what it is and why it’s neat enough to be pinned.)

Now, put chocolate and peanut butter together and you are a winner in my eyes! Add in the fact that these bars were so simple to make… It just took a few minutes and I didn’t even need to get out the mixer. My kids loved them, and they were gone in seconds at youth group.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars

You can find more yummy looking ideas on my Cooking and Baking board. I’m pretty picky about what I pin, and only post things I actually think I will do someday. I want to keep it clean so I don’t get overwhelmed and partake in reckless pinning.

Have you been Pinspired? I would love to see your projects!

Pondering Pinterest (saying that makes me smile)

So part of the changes that have been going on with me the last couple of weeks is that I have found lots more time wisely used time and energy! (Well, the energy starts to go around 7pm, but until then it’s great. I think that may have something to do with growing a baby.) So some of that time and energy is going to go towards Pinterest! I’m not super addicted, and I don’t follow a ton of people. I’m honestly not concerned about who is following me or re-pinning my pins. (I guess I’m not really sure… does anyone care? Should I care?) I really just love the service that Pinterest provides and how much it helps me keep my thoughts organized. It is genius if you ask me. I try not to pin things that I know I’ll never do. I want to keep it clean and tidy so I can find the things I really want to do!

My conclusion after pondering Pinterst is that if I’m going to spend the time pinning then I better spend the time doing! So without further ado, I present to you…. Pinterest Project of the Week! (I can hear all the wild applause. Thank you, Fabulous, I know!) Each week I want to share at least one project that I’ve done from my Pinterest boards. Kind of a little accountability, plus a fun time of sharing.

My first project that I’m sharing is a bit of a mixture of this pin from my Valentine’s Day Board and another project I saw online but unfortunately cannot remember where:

Paper Heart Wreath from the Hybrid Chick

I teach 3D art at the YMCA on Friday mornings and so for one of our projects we made these:

Framed 3D Heart Decor

I cut pink, red and purple construction paper into 2 inch wide strips (although I would possibly recommend narrower…. maybe 1 1/2″) then we folded them in half and curved the tops (unfolded side) in. One quick staple and you have a heart! We then dipped them in glue and stuck them onto white cardstock. Make sure when you cut your strips you are super straight though or else it will be tricky to get them to stick. I had a bit of that problem, but we also left the Y before they were dry and so as you can see I had one that shifted majorly. It could be seen as cute though… If you look at it with your head tipped a little.

When we got home I took the glass plastic out of one of my surplus Ikea frames – sidenote, Ikea sells frames that fit your child’s artwork perfectly! They are sized for 8 1/2″ x 11″, not 8″x10″– and popped in our art! If you want to frame these, make sure you leave a little extra space on the edges so your frame has some paper to hold onto without hearts getting in the way.

Miracle's

Mine

We tried to glue some together in an attempt to make the wreath, but the construction paper and the glue did not work together and we just ended up with deformed hearts. So we used our remaining few hearts to put together this little piece for Axel. Miracle is so sweet, she always tries to make a picture for Axel when we are at art class because she knows he is bummed that he misses it because of school.

A Heart Flower For Axel

If you have an awesome pin board (especially crafty or sewing) I would love to get some fresh new ideas! Leave me a link in the comments and I’ll come find you. Happy Pinning!

Let’s put a pin in it…

Do any of you use pinterest? I found it recently and I am absolutely in love. I haven’t had enough time to really use it to it’s full potential, but it is so great. Do you have a long list of bookmarks for projects you want to do? or recipes you want to bake? And then you forget about them? Or you can’t find them when you are reading through your overcluttered bookmark list of titles that make no sense? Then pinterest is for you! (And, no I’m not getting paid for this. But don’t you think I should do an infomercial?)

Basically you create virtual pinboards. You find people who have similar tastes as you and you follow their boards so you can see all the fun things they pin. When you are out and about on the web and you see something you like you “pin it”. You can have several different boards and you can categorize them however you want.

So now when you want to find that awesome project you just go to your “Crafts” (for example) board and browse through the pictures and there it is right there! Just waiting for you. Or maybe you are in the mood to make a special treat. Go to your “Baking” board and browse through all those recipes you have been meaning to try.

Go sign up! When I did it, I think they had me give them my email and then they sent me an invitation. If I remember correctly it took a few hours. But it is worth the wait! Follow my boards while you’re at it. I haven’t filled in my boards too much yet, but I”m working on it.

Now for some exciting news! My facebook page passed the 200 fans mark and so I’m celebrating with an awesome giveaway. You can win one of two hot/cold therapy sacks. The giveaway ends Friday, so enter right now before you forget! These things are awesome for injuries as well as chronic pain, cramps, or just warming your feet up in this cold fall weather. It is super easy to enter, but unfortunately you can’t do it from your phone. Sorry! Click right here to enter.

And since I’m giving out links here… You should add me to your Google+ circle too. I’ve been over there for a while now, but I believe it is no longer invite only so sign up. I’m still laughing at all the Facebook drama, lol.