Time Flies When You’re Having Fun

Somehow, my little lady has grown into a full-force tornado. No longer does she sit where I place her. No. Now she runs—that’s right, runs—to various places. Ninety percent of the time she makes it without a bump or a bruise. The other ten percent requires a quick “Are you OK? You’re OK!” from momma.

Toys are tossed without a care (though I will admit she loves to clean up, as long as you are helping her!) and socks get equal treatment. Death by toddler socks—not exactly how I thought I’d go.

Sixth grade has somewhat agreed with the kiddo. I still can’t believe I’m old enough to have a sixth grader. But then… some days I feel like I’m 90.

Happy 2013. If it’s anything like 2012, we’re in for it. :)

Poor little munchkin had her first "big" boo-boo.

The poor little munchkin had her first “big” boo-boo.

I’m a Facebook Master!

Well, according to smarterer that is. :)

Smarterer is beta site—that I got to test out thanks to BzzAgent—with crowd-sourced questions where you can take tests to let the world know just how much you know. Tests are available in a wide range of fields such as: Facebook (796, here, thank you), Twitter, Google Search, Excel, Photoshop, PHP, Gmail, Outlook… and the list really does go on and on.

Each question is timed, with points decreasing the longer it takes you to answer. But once you finish a question you can stop; you’re not timed on the test overall. (Which is a good thing because some of these tests go on and on and on – especially with people adding new questions all the time!) Answer right and your score increases, answer wrong and points are deducted (logical, eh?). Answer correctly once more and you’ll increase your score again. So don’t feel bad if you really don’t know the last four digits of Mark Zuckerberg’s social security number. You’ll have chances to redeem yourself. ;)

Smarterer also offers up ways for you to show off that master status. Share those scores on Facebook, Twitter, in email or on your resume. Signing up provides a personal profile page with all your tests and skill levels front and center. http://smarterer.com/momneedscoffee

So go ahead, pull up your chair and hit up the Facebook test. See if you can beat my score!

Health-Full® Nutty Grain Bread

This is the BEST healthy, low cal bread I have had in a very long time. I love my carbs (unfortunately) and just can’t give up my bread. It seems though, that the good, hearty breads are always full of calories. So it’s hard to lose weight while not denying myself. There are low calorie breads but they are NOTHING compared to Arnold’s Health-full® Nutty Grain (the version I had—thanks to being a BzzAgent!).

This bread is thick and moist. And BIG! Not teeny little squares. True, we’re talking 80 calories a slice, but since most plain bread is about 120 for 2 slices, you’re only adding a teeny bit more calories into the mix, along with: whole grains, 5 grams of protein per slice, and protein—5 per slice for the Nutty Grain. And have I said this bread is thick? You see and taste the grains (and in my case, nuts). The bread is filling. And that is what you want. There’s nothing worse than eating a sandwich and being hungry 20 minutes later. Doesn’t happen with this bread!

Health-full® comes in 3 versions:

  • Nutty Grain
    • 5g of fiber per slice
    • 5g of protein per slice
    • 80 calories per slice
    • Baked with whole grains
    • No artificial colors, flavors or preservatives
  •  10 Grain
    • 5g of fiber per slice
    • 5g of protein per slice
    • 80 calories per slice
    • Baked with 10 whole grains
    • No artificial colors, flavors or preservatives
  •  Flax & Fiber
    • 4g fiber per slice
    • 5g of protein per slice
    • 80 calories per slice
    • Good source of Omega-3 ALA
    • No artificial colors, flavors or preservatives


Have you tried this bread yet? What were your thoughts? If you want to try it, Arnold’s website has some great recipes to try with it! (I mean, check out that Autumn Turkey Sandwich!)

Yum.

My Birthday Cake

Well after two weeks of various family members being sick, we all finally got together for my birthday. I decided to go with a cake I saw on Pinterest. And while I was a teeny bit disappointed in how close two of the colors were to each other, I say “Bravo!” to myself for not only making my first 4 layered cake but also for making my own icing!

And there you have it. :) I had a wonderful time with family and yummy food.

Directions for cake:
2 boxes of white cake mix (I used the 4 egg whites option)
Add in gel coloring (I used Wilton’s Violet)

Buttercream recipe as follows, from Glorious Treats:

American Buttercream Frosting

1 cup (2 sticks) butter (salted, or unsalted)
1/4 teaspoon salt (if using unsalted butter)
4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (best quality available)
2-3 tablespoons heavy cream, half and half or milk.

*Optional- As mentioned above, I like a cream cheese version of this frosting best.  The cream cheese adds to the creamy texture, and cuts down on the sweetness just a bit.  If desired, for a very light cream cheese flavor add 1/2 block (4 oz). cream cheese, leaving the other ingredients (as listed above) the same.  For a more traditional cream cheese flavor, reduce the butter to 1/2 cup, and add 1 block (8 oz.) of cream cheese.  If using a full block of cream cheese, you can reduce the cream or milk to 1 tablespoon total.

Directions-
* In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, beat butter (on medium speed) until completely smooth (30 seconds to a minute). (If you are adding cream cheese, add it now, then beat until smooth)
* Add salt (if needed).
* One cup at time, add 2 cups of powdered sugar, beating after each addition.
* Add vanilla, or other flavorings and beat to combine.
* Add about 1 tablespoon of cream, and continue beating.
* Add the remaining 2 cups powdered sugar, one at a time.
* Add an additional 1-2 tablespoons cream until desired consistency is reached.  If you want to pipe the frosting on cupcakes, the frosting should be nice and thick.  Continue to beat another minute or so.  The frosting should now be smooth and fluffy.

I did go with the cream cheese option. I also made a thicker frosting even though I was just icing the cake (no piping involved). I was really shooting for a white frosting so I also added in a bit of Wilton’s White Icing Coloring. Made a world of difference (to me anyway, lol).