I mentioned on the last post that Greg's parents would be in town this week. They mainly came in for a special occasion; it was Greg's graduation on Saturday! Finally, all that hard work and sleepless nights have paid off...:D I am so very proud of you Greg, and more than anything, I am proud of the inner person and wonderful man that you are!
Let's play "Where's Greg"! Can you spot him? :P
Greg's momma. Isn't Sharon's dress so beautiful?! I love the color.
By the way, a cute little someone was present at the ceremony as well. Daniel is so big now--I just can't believe that he's already 2 years old. Two!! I still remember the olden days when he couldn't even eat solid food.
I should have warned you that there would be cuteness overload
This is one random observation. But have any of you noticed just how much smarter infants are getting nowadays?!
Daniel knows how to play with iPhones, iPads...you name it. During graduation ceremony, he was trying to "slide" the screen on Sharon's Blackberry just as he would with an iPhone, but I could tell that he was confused because sliding is "supposed to work". Obviously it didn't work. :P
He was such a good boy throughout the whole ceremony, and I am so proud of him!
Yea, brace yourselves. Because I am totally that aunt who constantly brags about her nephew. Haha! Not to mention, I also smother him with kisses and all I need now is a bright red lipstick.
Although Greg is still pretty busy with some business to take care of, Sharon, Russell (Greg's pops) and I have been enjoying each others' company. His grandparents also showed up to the graduation, and boy have we been eating a lot!
Many months ago I wrote that whenever Greg's family is in town, we tend to eat out pretty much most of the time. One of the ways that I try to keep my foods light and portions controlled, is by simply ordering the less creamy dishes.
For example, yesterday we all dined at Olive Garden. Instead of eating the heavier foods (which I don't usually eat much of, since the richness keeps me from being able to stomach all of it!) I like to order something more brothy or tomato-y. Of course, I still do want to eat other people's food as well, so I will have a few bites of their orders as well, even if they are creamy. No big deal.
Capellini Di Mare. My current fave! [Source]
always usually try to listen to my body and eat until I am just satisfied. Sometimes that is not an easy thing to do, but with practice it's definitely an achievable goal!
Not only do I try to have balanced portions for the sake of remaining fit, but the main reason I do that is because I easily get indigestion. There are times when one more bite of bread will give me cramps...even to the point of "having seconds or thirds", if you know what I mean. :P
Have I mentioned that I love to spoil people, particularly through food?!
More specifically, through baked treats like cookies. Mmmmm.
Terrible lighting+being in a hurry= blurry photos
Perfect Chocolate Cookies with Cinnamon Chips
Makes 16-18 cookies
Ingredients for Cinnamon Chips:
- 1 TBSP cinnamon
- 1 TBSP butter
- 2 TBSP brown sugar
- 1 TBSP almond milk
Ingredients for Cookies:
- 1 1/2 C organic pastry flour (or whole wheat pastry, or white)
- 1/4 C + 2 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 TBSP vanilla pudding mix
- 1/4 C brown sugar
- 1/2 C pure maple syrup
- 1/2 C butter (or Earth Balance)
- 1 egg+1 egg yolk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 C chopped pecans
1) Preheat oven to 350 F. Grab a small pan or pot, and heat it up on the stove at a low heat. Melt the "cinnamon chips" butter and quickly add the cinnamon, brown sugar, and almond milk. Stir for about 2-3 minutes. Then lay a parchment paper and pour the mixture on it. Put in the freezer for about 10 minutes or longer.
2) Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, vanilla pudding mix, and cocoa powder in a large bowl. Set it aside, and in a separate bowl or stand mixer, cream the butter. Then add the brown sugar, eggs, maple syrup, and vanilla, until the mixture is creamed thoroughly.
3) Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix with a wooden spatula. Finally, take the "cinnamon chip" mixture from the freezer and lightly break it apart and add to the batter. Lightly mix around. On a lightly buttered cookie sheet, drop golf-ball sized amounts of batter with 2 spoons. Keep them about 3 inches apart. Bake for approximately 12-13 minutes. Let them cool on the pan for 5 minutes because they will keep cooking.
***Note: "cinnamon chips" won't be too solid, just hardened enough to melt throughout sections of the cookies.***
This recipe may be rather rich in terms of taste, but it's super moist on the inside, and perfectly crisp on the outside and around the edges.
I'm planning to give these to Russell and Greg, and I will be making something else for Sharon since she gets headaches if she consumes chocolate.
What are your fave kinds of recipes and treats when it comes to baking for others?
-I would have to say, cookies and somewhat healthy cupcakes
If you know you're eating out a lot, do you try to be conscious of what you order? Tricks you have?
Are you a kid-lover?
-Greg fears that I'll want kids right away due to my extreme love for them! (In a non-creepy way) :D