‘Tis the Season

You know what I love about the Christmas season? Decorating. Cooking. Baking. Wrapping presents. Everything.

And (as you know) I’ve been on this blog kick, browsing recipes and dying to try them. I’ve already shared the Double Chocolate Chews recipe. I’ve also tried the Sugar Cookies recipe from Kate and Sara at Our Best Bites (so yummy!).

Well, what do I do with all of these yummy goodies that I’ve baked? It’s just me and The Nerd, and I’m not too keen on gaining 50 pounds this holiday season. So I’ve decided to give them away!

Tomorrow night is my office dinner, and I’m going to be loaded down with boxes of cookies for everyone. I thought I’d share some photos of the finished products:

Look at those cookies! I got lazy and used pre-packaged cookie icing.

Y-U-M. And I just love that polka dot wax tissue paper. Yes, you read right – *wax* tissue paper.

Side-by-side. I used decorator’s sugar on some of the sugar cookies and iced some of them.

The tins I’m packaging them in. I bought them at Wal-Mart. I love that they match the tissue paper!

A look at the top. The bow is made from the *most* awesome ribbon ever. It’s from the Container Store and is white. It’s perfect for packaging like this because it’s not easily smashed and will bounce right back up!
Well, that was my adventure today! Looking forward to handing them out tomorrow night!
Thanks for looking!

Video Game Nerds

Being the wife of a Nerd, video games are just part of my life.

I’ve never really partaken in the video game playing (except to play a few rounds of Mario Kart or Super Mario Bros. on the Super Nintendo back in the day), and to be honest, the whole first-person shooter thing makes me motion sick.

But alas, I’ve come to accept the role that video games play in my marriage. I like to call them “The Other Woman.” After we moved into our first house, I convinced James that we “needed” to buy another HDTV for The Nerd Cave (his room in the house for all of his “toys”) so that he could move all of the video game paraphernalia in there.

We have a lot of video game paraphernalia. I can’t count the number of games we own. We have an XBox 360 Elite, PlayStation 3 and a Wii. James also has a Dell XPS gaming laptop and a gaming PC in the Nerd Cave. He even has the HDTV set up to use as a monitor so he can play PC games on the TV.

James and his friends like to make fun of me because I never play the games. I watch. Or, if they’re playing first-person shooters (remember, motion sickness) I nap. Yeah, that’s right, I sleep and they play.

Last week, Ryan (James’ college roommate) was in town for work. He came over one night and the boys played Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2. I remember James waking me up at midnight (this was a weeknight, mind you) because Ryan had just left and it was time to move into the bedroom. Conveniently, there is a futon in the Nerd Cave that facilitates my napping.

Tonight, Ryan’s back. The boys are plaing CODMW2 again, and I took a few snapshots.

So, for your viewing pleasure, here are my Video Game Nerds:

Yup, that’s them. Concentrating *really* hard.
  
Hi, Ryan. Welcome to the Nerd Cave.
<3 That’s MY Nerd.
 Red is bad. Or so I’m told.
Love that face. He gets really into the games sometimes.
Yeah, that’s a Dr Pepper on the table. We <3 Dr Pepper.
Ah, the sounds of machine guns firing bullets into the air. I think feel a nap coming on…

Double Chocolate Chews

Oowey, gooey chocolate cookies. That’s what I’m talking about! ‘Tis the season for holiday goodies, and I spent the day trying out some holiday recipes that look oh, so good! The first was for these scrumptious chocolate cookies.

The recipe is from Southern Living’s Christmas at Home magazine.

Did I mention that my favorite part of the holiday season is decorating and baking? Oh yeah.

The Nerd was kind enough to spend the afternoon in the kitchen with me, helping me bake (and sampling!) these goodies.

The thing about these cookies is not their chocolatey exterior. Oh, no. The yummy goodness is on the inside when you find one of the many chocolate chips scattered throughout the batter. Y-U-M.

Ok, I know you’re dying to try these! So, here’s what you need to get started:

1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup sifted powdered sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
3 Tbsp. light corn syrup
2 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 large egg

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook 3/4 cup chocolate morsels and oil in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly. The magazine says this will take about 2 minutes, but it really took me like 10 minutes for all of the chocolate to melt. That’s what you want, melted chocolate chips. Sigh. Pour chocolate mixture into a large bowl, and cool 5 minutes.

2. Stir together flour, powdered sugar, cocoa, baking powder and salt. I used a whisk to do this, and it worked really well.

3. Stir brown sugar, corn syrup, vanilla, egg and 2 Tbsp. water into melted chocolate mixture. Then, stir that into the flour mixture. Now, add the remaining chocolate morsels for those sporadic, but oh-so-worth-it chocolate chips throughout the dough. The dough is going to be really stiff, and it takes a *lot* of effort to stir this all together. Your arm will get tired. Trust me.

4. Drop dough by level tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto lightly greased baking sheets. We molded them into little oval-shaped cookies. You’ll get about 3 dozen cookies out of the dough.

5. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes. Cook on baking sheets 2 minutes. Then, transfer to wire racks to cool completely (about 20 minutes).

When the cookies are cool, you’ll see cracks starting to appear throughout the surface. Yay! That will give you a little peek at the yummy goodness inside.

Just look at these:


So excited to give these out in my holiday goody boxes! What do you think?

What are your favorite holiday recipes to give away?

Thanks for looking! :)

the big bang!

Howdy! I have a confession to make: I’m a blog stalker.

Yes, I admit it. I can’t help it. I come home after a long day working (looking at a computer for most of it) and what do I want to do? Go outside and enjoy the lovely weather? No. Play with the minions (aka our two crazy puppies – Georgie and Kaylee)? Nope.

I stalk all of these crazy cool and totally talented women who blog about their lives. And I wish I was as cool as they are.

So, I decided to bite the bullet and join them. This is the beginning of a totally random adventure into my life. Are you ready for this? I hope so, ’cause here we go:

First, I guess I should tell you a little about me. I’m a twenty-something living in Dallas, Texas and I married the love of my life, who just happens to be a nerd. We’re talking won’t-go-out-on-Friday-nights-’cause-he-might-miss-Stargate nerd. There is a room in our house called “the Nerd Cave.” Yeah. That’s right. Kind of like the Bat Cave but with more Japanese models and video games.

Right now, as I’m typing this post, he’s on the other side of the room with his headphones on chatting with his online friends while playing a video game. Sometimes I think he’s talking to me. Then I realize how silly I am for thinking that he’s talking to the only person in the room. Of course he’s talking to the computer. Of course.

Don’t get me wrong: I love my nerd. It’s just hard to relate to him sometimes.

And hopefully, there will be some recipes and decorating involved in this adventure. Yay! I’m going to try my best to be like Amanda Bottoms and The Pioneer Woman. They make it look sooooo easy. Ha! So, I’m sure you’ll get to see a little of those adventures, too.

Stick around if you’re prepared for it. And bear with me as I try to figure this whole blog thing out.

Until next time, live long and prosper!



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