Monday, August 29, 2011

A New Semester

It's been over a week since I have blogged, but I've been really busy! Driving down to Cincinnati, Louisville, and finally made it to Bowling Green-WKU

I think this blog post is all about this new school year. I'm taking 18 hours, no classes on Friday, and an online class. It's going to be a different and great semester. I'm taking 12 hours for my Communication Disorders major including: Phonetics, Development of Speech and Language, Audiology, and Anatomy/Physiology for Speech. (It's supposed to be the hardest semester of the major!) I'm also taking Advanced Oral Spanish and Exceptional Education. 

Today I had my Phonetics and Spanish class. I think I'm really going to enjoy both of them. It was great to be back in a Spanish class-listening and speaking. 

I have a new room as well. I'm in new dorm and I really like it. It's a little bit bigger and is closer to the top of the hill. 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Brownie Pizza

After baking chocolate dipped peanut butter cookies, I tried a new recipe that I found from the blog: How Sweet It Is.  It's called Brownie Pizza. There are several ways that you can make it, but I will share how I made mine today.

1 Box Brownie Mix (I used Pillsbury Chocolate Fudge)
Carmel sauce 
Mini Candy Bars- cut up (I used Snickers)
1 tub of Cream Cheese Frosting (I used Pillsbury)
Chocolate Chips

Ta Da, it's done! 

I believe this was Chris's piece
Bake the brownie mix as directed. I used a 9 x13 pan, but a round pan will do too. I added chocolate chips to the batter to make it more "chocolateie." Let the brownies completely cool. Put in the refrigerator, if you are short on time. 
Spread on the cream cheese frosting. Add the carmel sauce- as much as you want. I put the carmel on in stripes and moved the pan around so the whole brownie was covered. Then add the candy bars and chocolate chips. ENJOY!! 

There are several other "pizza" ingredients you could add- coconut (like cheese!), fresh fruit (strawberries like pepperoni), nuts etc. Anything sweet would probably work. 

Easy Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Cookies

This was one of the two desserts that I made today. I was in the kitchen baking all afternoon! These cookies are kind of "famous" in our family. If we need to make something sweet for an occasion or give to friends we usually make this. We always get lots of compliments. Try them  out!

Becky Crocker Peanut Butter Cookie Mix (requires egg, oil, and water)
Baking Chocolate- Almond Bark works great! Use either Chocolate or Vanilla flavor (need 1/3 of the pack for one mix)
Sprinkles (optional)

Follow the directions on the mix packet. I like to add 1/2 Tablespoon extra of oil to make the cookies more moist. After baking the cookies, let them completely cool off. 

Once the cookies are cool, melt the chocolate in the microwave for around a minute. Use a wide mug to be able to dip the cookies in. Make sure not to burn the chocolate or it won't work (and will taste funky). Dip the cookies halfway, and then place them on wax paper for them to cool. If you want sprinkles add them for some color and fun. Chopped nuts are always a great topping as well. Cool completely and enjoy! 

 Final Product!

Today I used the chocolate and vanilla flavored melting bark. Both are DELICIOUS! I made these for my aunt and uncle and a family friend that my mom and I will be seeing next week on our way down to Kentucky.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Today I made a collage on a poster board of my trip to Spain this summer. I developed over 400 pictures- some going in my scrapbook, picture box, and now a poster for my room! I put on a bunch of pictures, postcards, stickers, metro passes, receipts, and a few other things from Spain. I'm excited to hang it up in my room. It was great to spend the afternoon doing something I love- crafts especially scrapbook related. 
The entire poster

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

HP6 and The Last Summer (of You and Me)

I recently finished two books: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling and The Last Summer (of You and Me) by Ann Brashares.

I only have one book left to read in the Harry Potter series! I had never seen the 6th movie so when I read the Half-Blood Prince it was all new to me. It wasn't one of my favorite of the series, but it was still action-packed like all of the other ones. 

The Last Summer was written by the same author as Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, so I thought that I woul read it. This book was written for adults rather than teenagers. It was a quick and easy read. I couldn't put it down because I had to see how it ended. I really like the three main characters in the book and see how they developed throughout the novel. Below is a summary of the book from: Amazon

"The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants author delivers her first novel for adults, a treacly tale about the tribulations a trio of longtime friends encounter. For as long as she can remember, 21-year-old Alice has spent summers on Fire Island with her parents and older sister, Riley. Riley, 24, is a beach lifeguard, more boyish in both looks and spirit than sweet, feminine Alice. An island neighbor and Riley's best friend, Paul, whose father is dead and mother mostly absent, returns to the island after two years away and must decide whether to sell his family's house there. More importantly, he and Alice finally act on an attraction they've felt for years, but they keep their frequent nuzzling quiet so as not to hurt Riley. Riley, meanwhile, has her own problems that could ruin Alice and Paul's clandestine romance and just about everything else. Brashares's YA roots are on display: the girls and Paul act like high school kids (Riley threatens to move out of the house unless everyone butts out; Paul and Alice are stricken with the most saccharine of puppy love), and anything below the surface is left untouched. It's a beach read, for sure, but a mediocre one."

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Another zucchini recipe- pasta

Yesterday I tried out another recipe with zucchini. We still have three more zucchinis in the fridge! I made zucchini pasta and used the recipe from the blog: Eat, Live, Run. Check it out! I made a few changes- I used parmesan cheese in place of marscapone cheese. I also added 2 TB more of olive oil, because if not, the pasta is dry. 

 All the ingredients
 There are different flavors, but I chose the Spinach & Feta

Final result- My family enjoyed it!

We had plenty of leftovers so the serving is probably for around 8 people!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Too much zucchini = time for some baking!

This year my dad added zucchini to his little garden in the backyard. We have so much zucchini now!!! I think we have 3 plus a GIANT one in the refrigerator. I had a request to cook or bake some food that included zucchini so we don't waste them or just eat cooked zucchini every night. My mom found a recipe in USA Today newspaper called "Norah's Brain-Booster Zucchini Muffins" They were featured in an article about healthy breakfast foods, I decided to try it out!

1 1/2 sticks butter, unsalted
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 TB vanilla
1 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups of white all-purpose flour
2 tsps. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 TBs. ground flaxseed (didn't use this in mine because I didn't have it)
1 TB. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
3 cups zucchini, grated
1 cup of raisins (optional- I just put a few in some of them)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter and sugar on high for 2 minutes with electric mixer. Reduce speed and fold in eggs and vanilla. 
In a separate bowl, whisk together flours, baking soda, salt, flax seed, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Gradually pour dry ingredients into wet ingredients and slowly combine on low. Fold in zucchini and raisins.
Distribute evenly into muffin tins prepared with vegetable oil. Bake until thoroughly cooked. About 25-30 minutes. Make about 20 muffins. 

Giant zucchini

They are Deeelicious! (Even if you aren't a fan of zucchini give it a try because I'm sure you'll love them!)

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Outer Banks

Last week I went to the Outer Banks in North Carolina with my family for a family reunion on my mom's side. We rented a big house in Corolla and there were a total of 19 of us that enjoyed the vacation. Our house was only a 5 minute walk from the beach so it was really close! We had beautiful weather and it was great to see my family!

Highlights of the vacation:
- Going to the beach (almost everyday)
- Riding the huge waves in an inner tube
- Swimming in our OWN pool!
- Walking up the big sand dunes in Kitty Hawk
- "Discovering the Lost Colony"
- Celebrating my grandparents' 50th wedding anniversary- including a wedding cake and the newlywed game.
- Riding bikes
- Going for runs on the beach
- Watching fireworks on the roof
- Time to read and listen to music while sitting on the beach
- Getting to talk and catch up with family members I haven't seen in awhile
- Seeing Friends with Benefits with my aunt, great aunt, grandma, and mom

To end this post I want to say that I am so grateful and lucky to have lots of opportunities to travel this summer. (Thanks Mom and Dad!) I've been to all over Spain, Dominican Republic, Outer Banks, Boston, Newport, and of course still exploring my new home state CT. 

Friday, August 5, 2011

Friendly Fires - Hawaiian Air

I really like this song!