Pecan Pie Muffins

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The girls are loving their new Kinectimals game. They put off getting this one because they thought all you did was “pet” the animals. Now it’s one of their favorites. I’m proud to say that Megan’s first pet is a Leopard named after me. Taylor’s is a Cheetah that she named after Lily. Lily and I had a very confusing day not knowing if they were talking to us or the TV. Lily had about 50 fetching false alarms. She missed out on a lot of napping time chasing all those fake balls.

If you could smoosh a pecan pie into a muffin, this would be it…..only 5 ingredients and tastes just like pecan pie.

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1 cup Light Brown Sugar, packed
1/2 cup Flour
1 cup Pecans, chopped
2/3 cup Unsalted Butter, softened
2 Eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Spray muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray (I don’t recommend using baking liners for these)

In a medium bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and mix well. Add flour and stir until just
combined. Stir in pecans.

Spoon batter into muffin cups. About 1/4 cup in each. Bake for 22 minutes.

Adapted from Paula Deen.

Servings: 12
Calories 228
Total Fat 17.5g
Total Carbohydrates 17.1g
Dietary Fiber 1.0g
Protein 2.4g
Nutrition Grade C

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Coach Chelsea Ocelot Print Jayden Caryall 21084M (Brown/Multi)

Gram’s Pumpkin Bread

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Yesterday we had our final Christmas party of the season. White Elephant, Just Dance 4, lots of food and fun times.

Our nephew got a Dublin Dr. Pepper as part of his gift, but he decided to drink it instead of making it a collectible.

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This is what we see at our feet the entire time we are hosting a party….

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and this….

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Twenty years ago (when I was only 8) my mom made me and my sister a cookbook of her Christmas recipes.

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This is one of the recipes….

1/2 cup Shortening
1-1/2 cups Sugar
1/2 cup Water
2 Eggs
1 cup Canned Pumpkin
1-2/3 cup Flour
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Cloves
1-1/2 tsp Cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cream shortening and sugar together. Add water, eggs and pumpkin. Combine dry ingredients, add to pumpkin mixture.

Bake for 1 hour.

Servings: 12
Calories 255
Total Fat 9.5g
Total Carbohydrates 40.4g
Dietary Fiber 1.3g
Protein 3.0g
Nutrition Grade C+

Today’s Leopard Find: Lux De Ville Lucky Me Kiss Lock Bag Faux Leopard with Rose Handbag Purse Retro Vintage

Mexican Salad

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Today we went to the Galleria to let Megan spend some more of her gift cards and for me to return the presents that she had changed her mind about. While we were there they talked us into ice skating. It was $24 for them to skate, then after about 5 laps around the tree, they decided that it was too crowded and they didn’t really want to skate after all. I would have forced them to go skate with a giant smile on their face, if it wasn’t for me waiting on the sidelines with 411 other people all crammed against the glass watching their kids too. Then we got to spend about 21 minutes trying to fight our way out of the parking lot. I’ve decided that during Spring Break, Thanksgiving Break and Christmas Break it’s pretty much best to just stay in the comfort of your own home.

I did find two more holiday baking posts but I thought I’d take a quick break to give you something to help prepare for the post-holiday weight loss.

6 cups Lettuce, shredded
5 cups (3 oz) Baked Tortilla Chips, broken into bite-sized pieces
1 cup Picante Sauce
1/2 cup (2 oz) Cheddar Cheese
15 oz Can Pinto Beans, rinsed and drained
2 oz Green Olives, sliced
1 large Lime, quartered
1/2 cup Cilantro, chopped

Warm beans on stove top for a couple of minutes.

Place 1-1/2 cups of lettuce onto each of the 4 plates or bowls. Top with 1/4 of the chips on each. Spoon picante sauce over chips and then top with cheese, beans, cilantro and olives. Squeeze a lime over each salad.

Servings: 4
Calories 251
Total Fat 7.1g
Total Carbohydrates 37.4g
Dietary Fiber 7.3g
Protein 11.2g
Nutrition Grade B

Today’s Leopard Print Find: 19″ Zela Leopard Print Decorative Glass Drink Dispenser

Chocolate Walnut Fudge

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This is the last of the holiday baking recipes. Thank goodness because I’m about ready to post salads, fruits and veggies. Still one more Christmas party to go though….

Today we took the girls to the mall to spend some of their Christmas money and gift cards. 5 hours of shopping. We went to Nordstroms, Justice, Lego, Best Buy, Target and Costco. Megan got her first pair of fancy jeans. She wasn’t happy about leaving them to get altered. Tomorrow is American Girl. :/

1-1/2 cups Sugar
2/3 cup (5 oz. can) Carnation Evaporated Milk
2 Tbs Butter
1/4 tsp Salt
2 cups Miniature Marshmallows
1-1/2 cups Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1/2 cup Walnuts, chopped
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

Line 8″ square baking pan with foil.

Combine sugar, evaporated milk, butter and salt in medium saucepan. Bring to a full boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Boil, stirring constantly, for 4 minutes. Remove from heat.

Stir in marshmallows, chocolate, nuts and vanilla. Stir for 1 minute or until marshmallows are melted. Pour into baking pan; refrigerate for 2 hours or until firm. Lift from pan; remove foil.

Servings: 48
Calories 72
Total Fat 2.8g
Total Carbohydrates 11.5g
Protein 0.8g
Nutrition Grade D-

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Sperry Top-Sider Bluefish Boat Shoe Womens

No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

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We were snowed in today so it was a pretty uneventful day of cleaning up Christmas, watching TV and praying that what I’m suddenly feeling isn’t the flu. So I’ll just leave you with this…part 2 of the Teacher’s Cookie Exchange.

1/2 cup Butter
2 cups Sugar
1/2 cup Milk
4 Tbs Cocoa
1/2 cup Creamy Peanut Butter
2 tsp Vanilla
3 cups Old Fashioned Oats

Add the first four ingredients into a 4-quart sauce pan.

Bring to a rolling boil and hold for 1 minute.

Remove from heat.

Add peanut butter into the hot mixture and stir until melted.

Add in vanilla.

Mix in the oats and drop by tablespoons onto wax paper.

Let cool until set.

Servings: 24
Calories 155
Total Fat 7.2g
Total Carbohydrates 21.9g
Dietary Fiber 1.1g
Protein 2.4g
Nutrition Grade C-

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Beige Leopard Cheetah Fashion Straw Cowboy Hat

Crock Pot Spiral Ham

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This was a very memorable Christmas. We had snow on Christmas a couple of years ago, but it was leftover from the day before. This year it actually snowed on Christmas! In Texas that’s a big deal! It hasn’t snowed on Christmas Day in about 83 years. I think the dogs enjoyed it even more than the girls did. We have a doggy door, so they keep going out and coming back in covered in snowballs.

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I decided to save money and not buy a honey baked ham. Putting it in the crock pot made it so moist and flavorful. It literally fell off the bone when we pulled it out.

1 Spiral Ham (I used a 10 lb ham)
1 Honey Glaze Packet
1 cup Coke

First make sure that the ham will fit into your slow cooker.

Place ham in the slow cooker. Mix the glaze ingredients and the coke. Pour over ham.

Cover and cook on low for 4 hours.

Today’s Leopard Print Find: TOMS Classics Silver Snow Leopard

Elf Shenanigans Part 3

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Well tomorrow is the day we say goodbye to the elves for a few months. At least I think it is…. The girls always have a hard time with them leaving and they leave notes begging and pleading for them to stay just a little bit longer. This one says please can you stay longer??

Here are a few or their latest escapades….

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This morning we found them riding the rooster in the kitchen and toilet paper streaming down the stairs. My camera was sitting next to them and we found numerous pictures of them rolling down the stairs in the toilet paper roll.

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They opened a brand new box of Trix and spelled out Feliz Navidad on the dining room table.

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They made miniature pancakes and a giant mess.

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They played miniature golf.

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They are in on the mustache trend.

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Hiding on the breakfast table.

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They were in the cookie jar.

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Drinking jelly beans.

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And zip-lining in the family room.

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Today’s Leopard Print Find: Fleece ML Animal Hat

Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Christmas shopping is finished! Everything is wrapped! Now the only thing I have left to finish is the 26 random acts of kindness. Since I’m not working, I have to do something without money. That makes it a little challenging. One down, 25 to go!

This wasn’t the one, but I had to make 3 dozen cookies for the teachers cookie exchange at school.

3/4 stick Butter Flavor Crisco Baking Stick
1-1/4 cups Light Brown Sugar, firmly packed
2 Tbs Milk
1 Tbs Vanilla Extract
1 Egg
1-3/4 cups Flour
1 tsp Salt
3/4 tsp Baking Soda
1 -1/2 cups Chocolate Chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine shortening, brown sugar, milk and vanilla in large bowl. Beat at medium speed until well blended. Beat in egg. Combine flour, salt and baking soda. Mix into shortening mixture until just blended. Stir in chocolate chips.

Drop by tablespoonfuls 3 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheet.

Bake 8 minutes.

Servings: 36
Calories 81
Total Fat 4.2g
Total Carbohydrates 9.5g
Protein 0.9g
Nutrition Grade D-

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Purple Leopard Fuzzy Dice

Gingerbread Men Cookies

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The girls had fun decorating gingerbread men tonight. We had icing, sprinkles and marshmallows to decorate with. Looks like we will be doing this again on Christmas Eve.

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1 cup Unsalted Butter, softened
1-1/2 cups Sugar
1 Egg
1 Tbs Dark Corn Syrup
3 cups Flour
2 tsp Baking Soda
2 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Ginger
1/2 tsp Ground Cloves
1/2 tsp Salt

Combine butter and sugar together thoroughly. Mix in the egg. Add corn syrup and mix well.

Add the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and salt. Mix until just combined. Place in refrigerator for about an hour, or until chilled enough to roll and cut cookies.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roll dough out between two pieces of wax paper and cut shapes with cookie cutter. Place on baking sheet and cook for 10 minutes.

Servings: 24
Calories 163
Total Fat 8.0g
Total Carbohydrates 21.1g
Dietary Fiber 0.5g
Protein 1.9g
Nutrition Grade D-

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Leopard Gift Basket Coffee TEA Cookies Mug Towel Coaster Candy Candle Safari Gift

Chocolate Mousse Parfaits

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We finally made it to see Santa tonight. Remind me not to put that one off ever again. I expected to stroll right up and hand him my list. Not so much….First we got there at 5:32. Just in time for his 5:30 break. So we left and came back after dinner. It only took us 2 hours to get through the line. All those procrastinators should have gone to see him a long time ago! Next year we are going the week of Thanksgiving so that the girls can give Santa more time and they won’t keep changing their mind. Megan has changed hers about 8 times in the last 3 weeks. She finally decided on Justice gift cards. Taylor asked for the Lego Pet Shop. Santa didn’t look too happy about whatever they told him….

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8 oz Philadelphia Dark Chocolate Indulgence
8 oz Cool Whip, thawed
3 Graham Cracker Sheets
Chocolate Sprinkles
Whip cream for topping

Process graham crackers in food processor.

Blend cool whip and chocolate.

In mini dessert cups, layer graham crackers, chocolate mixture and toppings.

Makes 6 minis
Calories 260
Total Fat 17.3g
Total Carbohydrates 26.1g
Dietary Fiber 1.2g
Protein 2.0g
Nutrition Grade D

Today’s Leopard Print Find: Women’s Leopard Design Flat Wellies Rubber Rain & Snow Boots RainBoots