Thursday, September 23, 2010

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

These are the BEST! Better than any plain old chocolate chip cookie I have ever eaten. I made mine with half semisweet chocolate chips and half white chocolate chips. So delish.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

2 1/8 cups Flour
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
12 Tbsp Butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 cup light Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Sugar
1 large Egg
1 large Egg Yolk
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 cups Chocolate Chips (use your preference of semisweet, bittersweet, milk, white, peanut butter…the options are endless!)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Adjust the oven rack to lower-middle position. Line a 9X13-inch baking pan with foil, letting the excess hang over the edges of the pan by about 1 inch so you can grab those edges and pull the brownies from the pan after they have baked. Spray the foil-lined pan with nonstick cooking spray.

Mix the flour, salt, and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside. Whisk the melted butter and sugars in a large bowl until combined. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla and mix well. Using a rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the egg mixture until just combined; do not overmix. Fold in the chocolate chips and turn the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with the spatula.

Bake until the top of the bars is light golden brown, slightly firm to the touch, and edges start pulling away from sides of pan, 24-28 minutes. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature. Remove the bars from the pan by lifting the foil overhang and transfer them to a cutting board. Cut into 2-inch squares and serve.
Recipe Source:

Monday, September 13, 2010

Annie's Birthday, Part 2

Annie woke up with a fever on her birthday. It sucked because I had already given out all of the invitations to her party and I had planned and planned. I called all of the people with kids and told them not to come. In the end we still had people come, just none of Annie's cousins. In a way it was good because it was freezing and raining that day everybody wouldn't have fit in our house. So Annie ended up having 2 parties.

Party #1: Grandparents, some Aunts and Uncles, and Friends

The Cake. Not perfect but not bad for a last minute throw together.

Annie still wasn't feeling very good during her party but she was a good sport. . .

Annie got lots of presents, her favorite were some blocks, a table a chairs, and some dresses. Everybody enjoyed the blocks. . .

Lots of pictures. . .

Party #2: More Aunts and Uncles and Cousins

We had a beautiful warm day for her 2nd party. We had a second party because we had bought a pinata and lots of candy to go into it, so we needed kids to take it away!

The cake was the bottom 2 layers of the first cake.

We also had cupcakes, because kids love cupcakes. . .

Annie took her cupcake and sat in the middle of the lawn and ate all of the frosting off of it. . .

Lots of cousins came. . .

Finally the pinata. . .

Annie has a very girly hit. . .

Gavin got really into it. . .

Dallas was ready to bring that sucker down!

The candy went everywhere. . .

Annie found her one sucker and was finished. . .

Everybody else on the other hand had their bags pretty full. . .

It was a lot of fun. Bring on the next one!
I forgot I had my sunglasses on, thats why I am the only bug in the picture. Ha.

Annie's Birthday, Part 1

Three days before Annie's birthday we went to the aquarium. Annie loved it, and we all had a really fun time.

The octopus was huge!

We took a break in a canoe. . .

Maycie loved the fish. . .

Annie loved watching the penguins, they did have real ones. . .

It was a lot of fun!

We went to Five Guys for lunch. . .

There was way too much food but it was really good!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Annie is 2!

I am awake cleaning my house at 1am preparing for Annie's little party tomorrow(or I guess today). So I thought I would share a little about her since thats what is on my mind.

It is crazy how time flies! I feel like a blinked and she was 1 and now she is 2. Annie is one of the biggest parts of my life. She makes me happy everyday. 

We were on our way to the doctor today for her 2 year check and the whole way there she kept saying "mommy I'm scared". I didn't even know she knew what being scared was. I am happy to say we both got through that appointment because she didn't need any shots so it wasn't as traumatizing as I thought it was going to be. 

Stats from the appointment
Height - 98th percentile
Weight - 17th percentile
Head Circumference - 67th percentile

Brent compared her to a lollipop??

I am amazed everyday at the amount of things she knows. How she is able to put together 5 or 6 words and it makes sense.

- Annie loves animals. 
- She loves reading books. 
- She loves to play with her dollies. 
- She loves to be outside and kick the soccer ball.
- Annie loves to play with Maycie.
- She is getting better at sharing her toys.
- She loves to lay on her tummy while we read books before she goes to bed.
- She can say her prayers all by herself.
- Annie loves to go to nursery.
- She loves to do puzzles.
- She loves to draw.
- She loves to dance. I cant believe how much rhythm she has because I have none.
- Her favorite shows are Dora, Olivia, and Max and Ruby.
- She is so sweet and happy most of the time. 
- Annie LOVES fries and sauce. She balances that out with her love of broccoli, peas, and corn.

I love everything about Annie and her personality and everything that makes her who she is. I honestly am sad it is going by so fast but I am excited to watch her learn new things and grow into a bigger little girl.

I am now going to bombard you with pictures. . .

3 days old. . .

Annie's first Halloween costume. . .

We survived RSV. Annie was in the hospital for 3 days. We left the hospital on Christmas Eve. . .

Christmas Day. . .

6 Months Old. . .

1 Year Old!

2 Years Old!

We love you Annie! We love to watch you learn and grow and teach us how to be better everyday.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Double Chocolate Chip Cookies!

I have been looking at this recipe for a while now. It looked like it was too much work because I have never made cookies with melted chocolate in them. But it wasn't that hard and the end result was totally worth it. These are the softest cookies I have ever had. 

I had to take the picture outside because I told Annie I would take her outside and I wasn't moving fast enough. It turns out the lighting is much better outside than in my house, so now I am going to have to retake all my pictures of the food I have posted outside.

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

**Resist the urge to bake the cookies longer than indicated; they may appear underbaked at first but will firm up as they cool.**

2 cups Flour
½ cup Baking Cocoa
2 tsp Baking Powder
½ tsp Salt
16 ounces Semisweet Chocolate, chopped (it is best not to substitute chocolate chips since they melt differently; I use Baker’s baking chocolate usually found in the baking aisle above the chocolate chips)
4 large Eggs
2 tsp Vanilla
10 Tbsp Butter, softened to room temperature
1 ½ cups packed Brown Sugar
½ cup White Sugar
1 ½ cups Semisweet Chocolate Chips

Whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl; set aside.

Melt the chocolate in the microwave (50% power for 2 minutes, then stir and microwave in 20 second intervals until chocolate is melted – be careful not to overheat or chocolate will sieze). In a small bowl, beat the eggs and vanilla lightly with a fork; set aside.

Beat the butter at medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 5 seconds. Beat in the sugars until combined, about 45 seconds; the mixture will look granular. Reduce the speed to low and gradually beat in the egg mixture until incorporated, about 45 seconds. Add the chocolate in a steady stream and beat until combined, about 40 seconds. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. With the mixer at low speed, add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Finally add the chocolate chips. Do not overbeat. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature until the consistency is fudge-like, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, adjust the oven racks to the upper- and lower-middle positions and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 sheets with parchment paper or silpat liners (this is pretty important – if the cookies are baked on a greased baking sheet only, they will probably stick). Roll the dough into 1 ½ inch balls and place them on the cookie sheets, spacing them about 1 ½ inches apart.

Bake until the edges of the cookies have just begun to set but the centers are still very soft, about 10-11 minutes, rotating the baking sheets from top to bottom halfway through the baking time. Cool the cookies on the sheets about 5 minutes or until set and transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough.

Recipe Source:

Thursday, September 2, 2010

2 Years & 6 Month Pics

I got pictures of my girls. Annie will be 2 next week and Maycie is 6 months. My sisters best friend took them, and they turned out really cute!

Some of Maycie. . .

Some of Annie. . .

and some of them together. . .

also Annie's famous words, ALL DONE!
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