Category Archives: Recipes

Halloween Spider Cupcake Tutorial

Halloween is approaching and I wanted to share an easy and super cute spider cupcake tutorial. Last weekend, I was invited to a Halloween party and I thought it would be fun to make some cupcakes with a little Halloween twist. This one is really easy and a fun one to do with the kids.

HollyDays Halloween Spider Cupcake Tutorial

Halloween Spider Cupcakes Tutorial

Here’s what you will need for the cupcakes:

- Boxed cupcake mix + ingredients (I don’t make homemade cupcakes, you can, though!)
- Icing (I did make buttercream – 1 cup butter, 1 cup powdered sugar, 1 tsp vanilla, 1/2 tsp almond flavoring + 2 TBSP milk) + food coloring
- Sour Punch Straws (in the candy aisle – I happened to find them at the checkout of Hobby Lobby)
- Candy Eyeballs (you can get these online or at your local craft store or bakery store)
- Sprinkles (of course!)
- Cupcake Wrappers (I think they really finish off the cute look – you can get ours HERE)

Halloween Spider Cupcakes

First, bake your cupcakes (chocolate, yellow, whatever flavor you wish) and make the icing. My recipe is add 2 sticks butter (unsalted real butter, yes) softened. (I always forget to leave out on the counter to soften and yes, even when I did this tutorial, I had to pop them in the microwave for a few seconds.) Then, cream the butter with the vanilla and almond flavoring. Add the powdered sugar a cup at a time so you don’t get a big poof of white stuff in your face (highly recommend not doing that) then add the milk 1 TBSP at a time to reach the desired consistency. When I made mine, I used the full 2 TBSP. Add the food coloring, just a couple drops will do. I wanted to do my spiders blue because I just think they are cuter that way and not nearly as messy as a black spider could be (seriously think about that before you jump at making them look really realistic – your couch and anything else little fingers will touch and stain will thank you).

HollyDays Halloween Spider Cupcake Tutorial

Then, put the cupcakes in the wrappers. I recommend putting the cupcakes in prior to decorating so you will not mess up the icing when you are picking them up to drop in the wrappers. Now, frost those cupcakes! This is the fun part and thank you to a sweet friend who was helping me. She decorated them beautifully. I like to use a 1M tip to decorate cupcakes. It is a large one, so this is how you achieve a nicely decorated cupcake.

Spider Cupcakes Tutorial

Ok, now cut all the Sour Punch Straws in thirds. This will give you 3 legs per straw and ultimately a lot of spider lets. Don’t forget, each spider takes 8 legs!

Spider Cupcakes Tutorial

Then, add the eyes and stick the legs in the icing and a little into the cupcake so they will stay and not fall out… and don’t forget about the sprinkles!

Halloween Spider Cupcake Tutorial

There you have it! Halloween spider cupcakes! Oh, and did you see the adorable Happy Everything Mini Platter and Halloween towels? We have an exciting giveaway coming on Friday!

Signature_Holly

 

 

 

 

 

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Gobble! Gobble!

November is my favorite month of the year. It’s finally acceptable to listen to Christmas music, it brings Thanksgiving (my favorite holiday), the start of the Christmas season and all things pumpkin. Today I made pumpkin bread for the teachers at our church’s preschool. I have the absolute best recipe for pumpkin bread. I have a friend who doesn’t even like pumpkin and likes this bread!

My best friend from childhood’s mom has entrusted me with her family recipe. It wasn’t until I moved out of state, and with some begging, that she finally shared her secret. I recently found out that her own daughter has not even been given the recipe! (she recently moved out of state and so she is hoping to soon make it into the inner circle) I am telling you all this only to say, I have been sworn to secrecy. However, I have the next best thing! The best recipe for banana bread. I don’t like banana’s and I like this bread. (Really!)

Banana Bread

Ingredients:

1 cup of butter softened, 2 cups of sugar, 7 large ripe bananas mashed, 1 3/4 tsp. vanilla extract, 4 eggs slightly beaten, 3 cups flour, 1/2 tsp. salt and 2 tsp. baking soda

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl with beater attachment. Blend in the mashed bananas, vanilla and eggs. Sift together flour, salt and baking soda. Add dry ingredients one cup at a time to banana mixture until well blended. Split into 2 greased 9×5 inch loaf pans. Bake for 45-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool bread in the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.

This bread is extremely moist and will be gobbled up quickly!

Happy Thanksgiving!

 

 

 

P.S. The little loaf pans are from Micheals craft store. They have a variety of fall and winter pans for $1 each, can’t beat that!

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What’s for Dinner?

I used to dread that question  . . . what’s for dinner? I love to cook and actually like grocery shopping, but deciding what to make is something I could do without. I was so blessed after we had Emme to have friends and family bring us dinner just about every other night for six weeks. Yes, six weeks, and it was amazing! I knew that couldn’t and wouldn’t last forever so I had to figure out how I was going to get back into the kitchen while managing two year old and a newborn.

A good friend of mine shared her strategy for doing exactly that, she suggested creating a monthly menu. At first I thought, I have trouble deciding what to make for dinner tomorrow let alone 3 weeks from now, but it really helps! It eliminated that dreaded question, time spent each week deciding what to make, and last minute trips to the store for ingredients. Plus those multiple trips to the store got increasingly challenging with two kids in the cart!

Holly was gracious enough to use her time away from unpacking boxes to design this printable calendar for October. This is what I will be using to create my monthly menu. There are two different color choices, just click on the link below each image to print your calendar.

 


click here to download


click here to download

Each month I will also be sharing one recipe from my dinner menu with you. I of course have some ‘reliable’ options on my monthly menu, but I also love to try new recipes. Don’t worry, I will let my husband be the guinea pig for testing those before I share them with you. Check back soon for October’s recipe!

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Candy Making for Kids Book Giveaway!

Candy Making for Kids by Courtney Dial Whitmore

I am so excited about this today… I have a super cute book to GIVE AWAY! You may have seen that we were featured on Pizzazzerie this week! Well, Courtney Dial Whitmore of Pizzazzerie has a new book, Candy Making for Kids! The book is filled with bright, colorful photos and easy recipes for making adorable candy creations for kids and with kids! Here are some of the beautiful images in the book:

Candy Making for Kids Candy Necklaces

Candy Making for Kids Candy Caterpillars

Doesn’t it make you want to make some candy with your little ones today?

Are you ready to win this book?

Candy Making for Kids by Courtney Dial Whitmore

Enter to Win Here:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Where to Buy the Book

You can buy the book Candy Making For Kids here (at Amazon) or here (Barnes & Noble).

Good Luck!

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Cherry Limeade Recipe

A couple years ago, for my daughter’s first birthday party we had pink everything- from the decorations to the drinks! One of the drinks we served was a yummy Cherry Limeade. It is almost impossible for me to drive past a Sonic during Happy Hour without giving in to my Cherry Limeade obsession. This week, I decided to remake this recipe (as found on Allrecipes.com) for a refreshing drink on a hot summer day. I wanted to share it because, well, it just wouldn’t be right if I didn’t!

Cherry Limeade Recipe

2 (12 fluid ounce) cans frozen limeade concentrate
1 (2 liter) bottle lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage (I used Publix brand)
1 (10 ounce) jar maraschino cherry juice (juice only from the jar of cherries – you can add the cherries as garnish) (I used Publix brand for this as well)
1 lime (if you want an extra lime for garnish, it is optional)

Directions

Stir all ingredients together. Squeeze Lime into mixture. Add lime slices and cherries as garnish. Pour over ice into a mason jar & enjoy!

 

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DIY Sprinkle Ice Cream Cones

There are three things I really love: sprinkles, chocolate and ice cream. Put them all together and I’d say you have one winning combination! If you saw our 4th of July Party on Monday, then you may remember the oh so yummy sprinkle ice cream cones. Well, I wanted to share this quick tutorial to do them yourself.

Sprinkle Ice Cream Cones

Here are the supplies you will need:

Ice Cream Cones
White Chocolates {I like to buy mine from a bakery supply store or a craft store vs. “Almond Bark” – my Almond Bark always gets clumpy!}
Sprinkles in a Bowl
Wax Paper
Double Boiler
Spoon

Add your white chocolates to your double boiler on medium heat. I use a Pampered Chef Double Boiler on top of my pan, but you can always stack two pans and put water in the bottom one. Just be careful with them and also make sure the water doesn’t touch the bottom of the top pan.

Stir your chocolates.

Continue to stir until they are nice and smooth.

Then dip the top edge of the cone in the white chocolate.

Then quickly dip the top of the cone in your sprinkles. These were for the 4th of July, so we used red, white and blue, but you could always change the color of the white chocolate and use any color of sprinkles! You may need to “roll” the cone a little to make sure all the white chocolate is covered.

That’s it! Now you have a super cute cone that adds an extra yummy treat!

They need to dry, so the cones with a pointy end need to stand up (I used a small juice cup). The regular cones with the flat bottom can stand up on their own on the wax paper.

Enjoy!

Have a great day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Busy Weekend

I just returned from a weekend Hugh O’Brian Youth (HOBY) Leadership Seminar. We volunteer with the program every year. My husband is on the Board of Directors and I take pictures and help with some behind the scenes responsibilities during the year and at the seminar. I spent most of last night editing and going through pictures I had taken during the weekend seminar… final count – over 600 photos. It was truly a great weekend. We had 278 students attending from all over the state of Alabama. Alabama has the largest seminar in the country and we are proud of that.

 

Here’s a graphic I made to share on the HOBY Facebook Page.
It is the quote we all had on the back of our t-shirts. I love this quote.


During the weekend, the students did a service project and donated 7,462 nonperishable food items to a local food pantry. The food will feed the families they help for the rest of the summer… wow, chills.


I am always amazed at the students and how much change you can see in them after just three days. HOBY truly changes lives. That is why I am such a big supporter and fan because it changed me when I was in 10th grade and every time I return to give of my time, it changes and encourages me again.

On another note, for Memorial Day yesterday, I spent the day with my husband and daughter. We had fun having lunch and then splashing in a little pool in the backyard. We made some homemade peach ice cream. It was so YUMMY!

Homemade Peach Ice Cream (from AllRecipes.com)

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 pounds fresh peaches – peeled, pitted and chopped
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 pint half-and-half cream
  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups whole milk, or as needed
 Directions
  1. Puree peaches with the sugar and half-and-half in batches in a blender or food processor.
  2. In a gallon ice cream freezer container, mix together the peach mixture, sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, and vanilla. Pour in enough whole milk to fill the container to the fill line, about 2 cups.
  3. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to freeze the ice cream.
Enjoy!

 

 


 

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{Real Party} Low Country Boil

My husband celebrated his 30th birthday last week.  He grew up shrimping with his dad, so a Low Country Boil was a fitting theme for his party.

I created a shrimp design that was used on the invitation, stamped on heavyweight napkins and on favor bags.

We had Low Country Boil (shrimp, corn on the cob, potatoes and Conecuh sausage), Pasta Salad, Oriental Salad and Broccoli Salad.

For dessert – Toasted Butter Pecan Cake, White Chocolate Pretzels, Brownie Muffins and Caramel Corn.  The Pecan cake and Caramel Corn are SUPER delicious!  Sweet Tea and Lemonade were served in Mason jars and we used our Water Bottle Labels that coordinated with the invitations.

A HUGE thank you for all the help from family and friends to pull off a successful event!

My Father-In-Law actually caught all the shrimp for the party!

And thank you to Chad Hall, for creating a perfect party atmosphere with his amazing talent!

 

Have a great week!

 

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