Archive for December, 2009

As mentioned previously, my brother Ben asked me for a chocolate cake with peanut butter filling for Christmas.

Any excuse to bake!

First, Steve baked a regular devil’s food cake in 2 8 inch pans. I was still under the weather.  But then I did the rest, since I figured I would be spending several days with those who would  be consuming it and they were bound to come in contact with my germs anyway.

I torted each layer, so I would have a total of 4 cake layers. Then I filled the layers with filling, of course!

Steve likes to take pictures of me spreading things, so here are a few of the many that are filling up my hard drive:

Someday I’ll own a program that allows me to make a collage with photos like this.

There are a lot of “somedays” in my life.

After putting it all together, I whipped up a creamy ganache and poured it over the whole thing, spreading it a little as I went to make sure it covered the whole cake.

Steve cut out the nativity stencil and we sifted some powdered sugar over it.

Oh, boy was this ever delicious.

Please try this filling- this whole combo. It was lucious.

Peanut Butter Filling:

3/4 cup soft butter

3/4 cup peanut butter

1 1/2 tbs honey

2 tsp vanilla

Beat to combine, and then add:

3 cups of sifted powdered sugar

Beat until combined, scraping the bowl diligently, then add:

2 tbs of whipping cream

Mix and spread on cooled cake.

Or get a spoon and a tall glass of milk and overdose in peanut-buttery goodness.


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Christmas Snippets

This year the Flynn family (us) spent Christmas with my side of the family in good ol’ Yakima.

Here are just a few snippets of the goings on:

I colored in Ben’s tattoos with washable markers and he looked very festive in red and green.

Remus joined in the festivity as well, but didn’t like getting her picture taken.

Of course there were board games…

And presents wrapped in silly ways.

Ben asked me for a chocolate cake with peanut butter filling. I was happy to oblige. Steve made the amazing nativity stencil.

This was our first Christmas with Rubi, she joined right in with the crazy Smith-family traditions.

Liz wrapped my gift like a wedding cake, and Ben did his best to distract you from looking at it.

And my beloved Steve spent hours knitting me this amazing hat of his own design.  It keeps the hair off my neck so I don’t itch.  He is simply wonderful.

I hope that you and yours had a fantastic Christmas as well.

Happy Holidays!

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Dear Readers,

While I am getting my Christmas pictures downloaded, unpacking from traveling around the state, and generally trying to get warm, here is my question for you:

If you were to leave your house for about six days and you decided to be frugal and turn off your heat completely while you were gone, how long will it take for a 2 bedroom apartment to become livable again?


Heather the Snowman

P.S. My portable heater is blowing cold air, any suggestions?

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Ninja-bread Men

I came down with a nasty bug.

Unfortunately, many our our holiday gifts this year were based on baked goods, and I can’t bake or I’ll make everyone sick.


Fortunately, I happen to be married to Super Steve.

We had decided to make our friends, the Bennights, a spice cake.  Steve took over, and did the whole thing himself.

The Bennights are in Karate classes, so Steve decided to go with that theme:

Uh oh, here come some ninjas!

And that give us- the Ninja-bread cake!

But, wait, is Steve going to get fancy with the sprinkles?

I think he is!

Beautiful! Let’s all have a ninja fight around the Christmas tree!

Merry Christmas everybody!

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Remember when I said I love ornaments?

Its all true.  I especially love the homemade ones.

This year I was lucky enough to be a part of two different ornament exchanges, which means I made more than 24 of them!

I decided on snowmen this year.  They were pretty easy.

I started with some plain white ball ornaments (hardest part of making these: finding plain white ball ornaments).

Then I made some noses out of Sculpy® clay- remember these?

They are easy to burn. If you decide to take a nap and forget they are in the oven and wake up 3 hours later because the phone is ringing and realize the house is full of smoke, you’ll know you baked them too long.

Anyhow, just glue the little suckers onto the ornaments in a nose-like position.

Make sure to drink mint tea and wear a big fluffy red bathrobe while you do this, it is important.

Next, they need faces.  Just draw them on with a marker.

I enjoyed making a variety of faces. My favorites ended up being the ones with tiny eyes and dotted mouths.

From there, cut a small length of pipe cleaner, glue it on and attach pom-poms. And there you have it- Ear muffs!

Below are  several of the other handmade ornaments on my tree.  The ones I’m featuring were made by friends in ornament exchanges over the last few years.

From Laura.

The butterfly in the back is from Mary, the Cardinal is from Connie, the Star is from Sharon, and the tree is from Jenny.

From Kim.

From my momma.

From Jenny.

I’m a horrible person for forgetting who made this little cutie.

From Sharon.

From Martha.

From Karen. Karen gave me an A in her class. Thanks, Karen!

And this lovely ornament was made by my dad.  He turned the wood parts on his lathe and attached them to a sea urchin.  The picture doesn’t do it justice.

Unfortunately I ran out of hooks and so the ornaments from my most recent exchange weren’t hung on the tree when I took pictures. They are there now and look lovely.

From Diana, Melissa, Katie, Karen, and Lora.

And here they are to show off their stuff!

Katie didn’t make it to the exchange because she was busy in the hospital having a baby.

People have different priorities, I understand.

Happy Christmas!  Show me what you are making!

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I was lucky enough to stumble upon the Brown Paper Package exchange hosted by Max and Ellie this year.

I put my package in the mail yesterday, and I’m excited to see what will come in mine.

Here is a peak into my package- we were to include:

A little something for the taste buds: a traditional holiday treat and the recipe.

These are my Chocolate Black Pepper cookies, and they will be the star of an upcoming recipe post.

Also included, a little holiday something for the home.

I made these felt beauties last year, I love poinsettias. I love felt. And I love ornaments. So I love them.

Finally, a little something for my partner.

No, not The Tale of Benjamin Bunny…

A sweet little mini book purse!  Perfect for keeping track of small items in a larger purse.

I sure hope she enjoys it!

I think it all came together very nicely.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of it all packed up and wrapped in brown paper.  Oh, well.

Thanks to Max and Ellie for hosting this fun exchange!

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Pot Pie Humor

There has been much going on in Christmas preparation around here.

Here are a few previews to upcoming posts:

Lots of baking!

Lots of  ornament making!

Lots of gift making!

But what I really wanted to share with you tonight was the pot pie lunch my husband (Steve) made for us today.  Can you see the S and the H?

He said the S was for she and the H was for he.

And I’m still laughing about it.

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