Valentines Day Cookie Cake

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Happy February! The month of L.O.V.E.

Valentine’s Day can elicit a wide range of emotions. If you are single, it’s a day you dread – you may end up ordering pizza, watching Netflix, and eating a tub of ice cream (the complete opposite meaning of “Netflix and chill”). If you are dating, it’s a day for which you might spend an insane amount of money to show how much you love someone. Aaaand if you are married, you may celebrate the weekend before to avoid the crowd or at home with something low key.

This year we opted to hang out at home and do something low key. Yes, my husband and I will get each other cards – my husband’s is always funny and inappropriate and mine is always reallllly ridiculously deep. We will most likely sneak away for dinner weeks later, but for now we were perfectly okay with staying home in our PJ’s and watching a movie. And by movie, I mean 30 minutes of the movie at a time because we had to keep pausing to tend to the small human we so lovingly refer to as “the Boss.”

I may have jumped the gun with the Valentine’s Day plans with my little love…I wanted to bake with Avery, I wanted to craft with Avery…and then I remembered – she can’t even walk yet and she would be more interested in throwing flour around the kitchen than actually baking anything edible.

I thought it would be fun to attempt a giant cookie cake – that way when she gets older, I’ll know how to make one and she’ll most definitely think I am THE best baker in the world.

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I found this fabulous recipe on Life, Love and Sugar. What did I do with the leftover dough? Make cookies, of course!

While my Valentine’s Day wasn’t particularly exciting or full of bouquets and fancy dinners, it was perfect for where we are in life. I hope that yours was perfect as well! And if it wasn’t – just make this cookie cake and that will most certainly redeem it! Check out this simple recipe below!

Valentines Day Cookie Cake

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.
  2. Mix in egg and vanilla extract.
  3. With the mixer on low speed, add flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt.
  4. Stir in chocolate chips. Dough will be thick.
  5. Chill for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
  6. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  7. Spray a coat of baking spray to the bottom of the pan.
  8. Spread the dough out into the cake pan. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the edges are slightly golden.
  9. Remove from oven and allow to cool

Recipe adapted from Life, Love and Sugar

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Holiday Etiquette: A guide to being the perfect guest

Aside from holiday outfits, decor and drinking hot cocoa by the fire, holiday gatherings are about spending quality time with family and friends. To stay off Santa’s naughty list this year, follow these 5 important Holiday etiquette rules.

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Santa’s Hotline is back!

It’s that time of year again! The lovely people at FreeConferenceCall.com open up their Santa’s hotline for kids to call and leave their wish list. It’s absolutely free to call and the best part is, you can avoid those horrible lines at the mall.

Plus, if you’re a last minute shopper like me, you can go to the store and buy EXACTLY what you need! Hear the big man himself by calling the number listed below. Happy Holidays!

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Life with Avery: Family Halloween Costume

Avery’s first Halloween ever?!? You know I had to go big. She needed to know that we take Halloween incredibly seriously around here, and this year was no exception. The day of Halloween was very busy, as always. I had to get into full costume for my work Halloween costume party and transport my gypsy box to work all in one piece (this proved to be a rather monumental task).

Thennn I had to make sure everything was ready to go for the evening. It was only right that Bobby and I played a part in Avery’s halloween costume. We wanted to show her off to all 6 neighbors we know on our block (I know, we’re so social!)_and we had to do it early since kids start lining up for my husband’s Halloween haunted house around 6pm.

We decided to base our costumes on Little Red Riding Hood. The week before Halloween, I walked into my local thrift store and found the perfect grandmother’s dress/moo moo for just $7. I added a low bun, flats, and my mom’s reading glasses, and voila! My costume was complete for only $7. Avery’s costume was purchased HERE and fit her juuuust right. That girl is growing at a rapid rate and I thought by the time Halloween rolled around it might not fit. Thankfully, I was wrong – it fit her just right. It’s a good thing she hasn’t been on a growth spurt, though, because if she’d had just a few more ounces of milk that day, she may have busted the seams!

 

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I loved all the family costume ideas I saw this year – there was so much creativity! It was a long and exhausting day and if Avery could talk, she would probably say, “but Mommy, what tired eyes you have.” I love the way our costumes turned out – it was totally worth it.

I hope our costumes give you a little inspiration for next year. Only 349 days until Halloween!


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DIY Fortune Teller Halloween Costume

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If I am being completely honest, I was not feeling Halloween this year at all. Just the thought of finding a costume sounded exhausting! At the end of every day all I want to do is jump into my pajamas and snuggle with my little one. It’s so unfair they can wear onesies all day!

As Halloween got closer, the crazy competitive side of me began to emerge and I wanted to win my workplace’s Halloween costume contest. I searched online for some inspiration – I wanted to find something that wouldn’t require too many purchases or much time. Last year I was able to create my Halloween costume two or three days before the big day, plus I could wake up super early. I had no idea what would be in store the day before. We are officially teething here in the King home, which means short naps and cruelly long nights for me – I needed something easy!

My husband spent the week before Halloween prepping for his annual haunted house, which means all of the life-size mannequins that live in my attic come out to make their grand debut. I, however, took ages before I finally decided on being a fortune teller. The Friday before Halloween I went through my closet and found a few items I could use for my fortune teller idea. I also snagged two unused boxes from work and purchased 3 cans of black spray paint and some black duct tape. Once the box was assembled, I ran to Joann’s on Sunday evening to gather some material to pull it all together. It may have been relatively last-minute, but it was enough to win first place! Check out the pictures below!

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Madam Yvette predicts she will win again next year!


Halloween Party Fun!

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October is a very busy month in the King home. We host “King’s Haunted House” on Halloween night, and last year we hosted our second Halloween party. Our first theme was 70’s Disco, but last year we decided to nix the theme and keep it simple and scary. I was beyond excited to see everyone’s costumes!

Throwing a party tends to be way more work than expected. I learned a few key concepts about party-throwing, though: make food that can be prepared ahead of time, designate one responsible friend to monitor the music, and feed your husband a hearty meal before the party. If you know me at all, you can probably guess that my favorite thing about these parties is creating and displaying all the Halloween décor. To set the mood, we sent personalized toe tags for invites. They were perfectly created by my brilliant husband using Adobe Photoshop. We also made Halloween costume trophies for the winners of the contest using only dollar store skeletons, spray paint, felt balls and a glue gun.

They cost less than $10 to make.. Aaaaand they are the cutest trophies ever.

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It’s going to be hard to top these invites next year! We added blood to the toe tag for a spooky effect. Leave me a comment below and let me know what you think! Happy October, Friends!

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