Cookie Mania


We love cookies! We spent yesterday checking out some new recipes.  First, I found a really simple 3 ingredient no bake cookie.

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup chips (chocolate, butterscotch, white chocolate, whichever you want)  we used butterscotch
  • 4 cups crushed potato chips (oyster crackers also work)

Oyster crackers?

We made a batch made with oyster crackers and another with ruffled chips.  Really simple to make.  You simply put your peanut butter and butterscotch chips (or whichever flavor you choose) into the microwave, 30 seconds to start, add in 30-second increments until you can stir the liquidy peanut butter and chips together until smooth, once you have a smooth liquidy blend, slowly stir in your chips until they are all well coated.  Once well coated, drop by tablespoon full onto waxed paper and chill for 10-15 minutes until set.   That’s it!  Easy peasy and so versatile to whatever your taste may be and what you may have on hand.

Super Yummy Hedgehogs

Second, we made some super cute Hedgehog Cookies.  They take some time and only make a small batch of a whopping 12 cookies but, so much fun and super cute.  I added a link to the recipe below.  We shaped the dough into a teardrop shape to make the basic shape with a nose.  Finally, when they cooled, we dipped the back-end into some melted chocolate, I added a tablespoon of Nutella to my melted chocolate chips.  Once the backend is coated, roll it in your chocolate sprinkles to create the hedgehog body.  The front pointed piece is left plain so you can use a toothpick to make the nose and eyes.

Nailed it?

Yep, we clearly could have one of those Nailed It after shots but, it was just too much fun to sit with my 9-year-old and make these.  The fished product was perfect in her eyes and that, to me, was all that counted.  Bonus, they tasted so good with a cup of coffee!


Snow Day

Snow Day!

I can remember the feeling of snow days from back when I was a kid.  They were the best!  My brothers and I could play, sled, freeze our fingers and noses of until we had to go inside.  Good times!  Now, as a homeschool parent, I pick those magical days.  Sometimes that works in my favor but other times it makes me the villain.  My oldest helps with shoveling the sidewalk and steps.  I love that, she is great at helping in the snow and around the house.  My youngest has a smaller shovel she uses to shovel off the back deck for the dogs to get to the yard.  I can not emphasize enough how she looks forward to snow so that she can use her special shovel and do that all important job.  I have to force her little red-nosed self to come in for some hot chocolate.  Kids and snow, perfect together!

 Ice Day?

Just doesn’t have the same ring of excitement to it.  Today, we are having an ice day.  Everything is covered in ice.  I woke at 5 am to put the dogs out and expected to see snow.  Except, there was no snow.  Instead, I witness our boxer mix slide across the back deck as she charged out the back door. The sky is gray and overcast as the wet sleet and rain mix pings against the windows.  Just makes it all a bit gloomy. So, I called it.  Snow day or ice day, in the end, it means a day off.  A perfect lazy day with hot chocolate and popcorn.


It is a perfect day to set aside the books, crawl under blankets and read aloud, snuggle and laugh.  Chocolatey drinks with cool whip on top just seem to bring it all home.  Snow days are what memories are made and bring joy to kids of all ages.  Even if today’s snow day isn’t really about the snow but instead about that shiny coating that makes it look like the neighbor’s trees are made of glass.  We’ll take it.


The R Word

Responsibility is a funny thing.  As they age, we want our children to become more responsible.  Our job as parents is to raise them and prepare them for the world outside of our protective circle.  My oldest child is about to get her driver’s license.  A scary thought indeed!  If we are about to trust her with a vehicle, shouldn’t we trust her with a puppy?


For her 16th birthday, my daughter did NOT ask for a car.   Instead, she asked for a tiny puppy.  First, we spent weeks searching breeds to find what she wanted that would fit with our lifestyle and other pets. Second, we searched all the local shelters for months to see if they had any mixed breeds with the breeds she was looking for.  Finally, we found her.


Yes, I said it.  A puppy! After years of older dog and young dogs past the puppy stage, our house has an honest to goodness puppy.   I had forgotten how much work they are.  The late-night whining and so many checkups, last but not least,  the house training.  She is so adorable to watch and my daughter loves her.  I will admit, I will be happy when the puppy phase passes and she moves into the young dog phase.

So Lucky

We have been lucky, they are all adjusting well together.  With a shelter dog, you are able to introduce everyone in advance.  Not so with the pet store.  It is funny to see all three dogs together now.  Our oldest is nearly 14 years old and he is a shaggy white dog.  Our second dog is a nearly two-year-old boxer mix. If you were to cross them, you would have the new puppy.  She has the coat and colors of our boxer mix but with long hair.  She has been so wonderful with the puppy and leads her around, teaches her how to properly shake a toy and is just like a mother to her.

D O G the Cat

We also have an awesome cat we have raised since he was a one-day-old orphan.  He is very sweet and loves the dogs.  I honestly do not think he is aware they are different breeds.  He is larger than our 3-pound addition.  He never fails to astound me with how gentle he is with her.  He is patient and watches her, he rolls around with her on the floor but never lets out his claws.  It is as if he knows how small she is and wants to protect her.  He is showing his own responsibility for her early training and accepting her into our family.  This cat so in tune with my daughter and shares a birthday with her.  Yet, after 2 years with him, he still astounds me with his personality and intelligence.


This may seem to be random rambling but, I do have a point there.  As parents, we have opportunities and it is up to us to seize them when they come.  Exhausting as the puppy can be, she is a great learning experience for my daughter.  Not only are they bonding and making lifelong friends but, she is learning responsibility for another tiny precious life.  We have always had pets around since before she was born.  As she has grown, it has gone from dogs and cats to include a rabbit and a hamster, even a few fish over the years.  But, with Annie, this is our first puppy.  This is my daughter’s tiny shadow and a window into responsibility for more than just herself.

Take for Granted?

It is easy to look at an animal and see just an animal.  To do so would be taking everything they have to offer for granted.  We have three dogs and each is so different in looks and personality.  Two cats, again, each is different in their looks and personality.  Even the rabbit, he is moody and packed with personality and his own fluffy charm.  Our hamster is always fun to watch, she is a little beggar for sunflower seeds and such a daredevil about climbing the bars of her cage.  Animals may seem like just animals but, when you let them in and open your heart, they give back so much in love, trust and absolute faith in us.  They know when we are sad and offer comfort.  They entertain us, join us and complete us in ways we didn’t know were incomplete.