A Mixed Bag of Wedding Photos and Literary Tangents

A Mixed Bag of Wedding Photos and Literary Tangents

Every time this year that someone asks me, “Has your summer been relaxing?,” I want to respond as Mr. Beaver responded to Susan Pevensie:  “Who said anything about relaxing?  ‘Course it isn’t relaxing.  But it’s good.  It’s the summer, I tell you.”  (I think that I could probably use quotations from Lemony Snicket and C.S. Lewis to  describe everything in life. But I digress.)

The highlight of these busy weeks was my brother’s wedding.  After several days of heavy downpours in Sarasota, we worried that the outdoor wedding would be a mixed bag of love and rain — in the same way that “a trip to the zoo would be a very mixed bag if the weather were beautiful, but all the man- and woman-eating lions were running around loose”  (and there’s your Snicket quote for the day).

holding hands prayer before wedding Sarasota

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Green Mint Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

Green Mint Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

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I wonder why some ice cream companies dye their mint ice cream green and other companies make white mint ice cream.  Personally, I don’t think the color affects the flavor–I love a few scoops of white mint ice cream from Breyer’s as much as I love a green mint Klondike bar.   This month, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to make green mint chocolate chip cookie bars for St. Patrick’s Day.

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Oatmeal Cream Pie Pancakes

Oatmeal Cream Pie Pancakes

January is National Oatmeal Month

My mom loves coffee, and I don’t mean frilly frappes with sugary syrups. I mean a dark mug of steaming joe. No cream. No sugar. Just hot black coffee.

Occasionally, when I was in elementary, we would visit a local coffee shop in the morning before school. Mom would order the mandatory java; I would savor a homemade oatmeal cream pie.

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Although a soft, sweet oatmeal cookie isn’t the most balanced breakfast, my grades never suffered from the sugar overload.  Now that I am older and (supposedly) smarter, I desire to eat (slightly) more nutritious morning meals.

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So, to start off the National Oatmeal Month celebrations, we are making Oatmeal Cream Pie Pancakes (using Blind Spot Nutbutter of course). Stay tuned all month for more amazing oatmeal recipes!

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Oatmeal Cream Pie Pancakes

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice
  • 2 tbs. Oatmeal Raisin Cookie blended nut butter
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • rounded 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • dash of cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • vanilla yogurt for topping

Directions

  • Grind all ingredients (besides the yogurt) in a food processor until it is the consistency of pancake batter (or paint).
  • Heat a griddle or frying pan over high heat.  Lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Drop spoonfuls onto heated pan.  Once bubbles begin to form on the top, flip the pancakes.
  • Cook for an additional 1-3 minutes.
  • Stack pancakes on a plate, layering with vanilla yogurt (pancake, yogurt, pancake, yogurt, pancake, etc.)
  • Top with raisins, banana slices, syrup, chocolate chips, sprinkles, or whatever pancake toppings you like.
  • Eat and enjoy!

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Cookie Critique: Sheetz

Cookie Critique: Sheetz

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Sometimes you need a cookie the size of your face.


On Monday afternoon, I ate 2 cookies the size of my face.


I blame my love of a bargain.  Oatmeal Craisin Cookies at Sheetz were $2 for two cookies or $1.65 for one cookie, so it only made sense to get two.


And once you eat one, the other would be lonely without a friend, so I had to eat them both.


Really, it was very humanitarian of me to eat two cookies.

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Appearance: 4 – behold the massive, golden, round cookie!

Texture: 1.5 – it was moist, but I am not sure that the center was completely cooked.  It was more the texture of a really thin cupcake.

Taste: 1 – WWWWAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYY too sweet…but I still managed to eat two of them, so take my opinion with a grain of salt 🙂

Total: 6.5


 

See my other reviews:

 

Cookie Critiques: Jersey Mike’s Subs

Cookie Critiques: Jersey Mike’s Subs

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My mom is the real MVP.


Two days after she made the special Starbucks cookie delivery, she had a meeting near my school and offered to take me to lunch. After uncertain discussion, a u-turn, and changing our minds one last time, we ended up at Jersey Mike’s.


Like every good sub shop, Jersey Mike’s serves oatmeal raisin cookies, so I had to taste them.

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Appearance: 2.5 – They were a slightly oblong.  Also, you could hardly tell if it was a raisin cookie or a chocolate chip cookie.

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Texture: 2 – Way to go, Jersey Mike’s!  You perfected the cookie with a slightly crisp outside and chewy inside.  Success!

Taste: 4 – They nailed this as well.  I would have liked a little more oatmeal, but it tasted real, hearty, and pure!

Final Score: 8.5 out of 10 and two thumbs up!

Cookie Critique:  Starbucks

Cookie Critique:  Starbucks

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Last week, two facts were sure:

1. It was time for another cookie critique.

2. I was treating a dorm-mate to Starbucks at the end of the week.

In my mind, everything was aligning perfectly.


That ended when I walked into Starbucks. There were no cookies in their display case! 😳

So I made a special trip to Duncan Donuts a few days later only to learn that my local Duncan Donuts doesn’t sell oatmeal cookies! 😢


Thank you, Mom, for making a quick stop by the school after your Bible study to bring me Starbuck’s last oatmeal raisin cookie. You are a Godsend.


In the comfort of my dorm room, I made the following critique.

Appearance:  cookiejudging

Appearance:  2.5 – It wasn’t a perfect circle, and the raisins were not evenly distributed.

Texture: 3 – I know that my scoring only goes up to 2 points for texture, but this cookie was honestly perfect.  It was so soft that it earned bonus points!

Taste: 2.5 – it tasted like coffee. No joke.  other than that, it was delicious, wholesome and consistent.

Final score: 8 out of 10

Cookie Critiques: Firehouse Subs

Cookie Critiques: Firehouse Subs

cookiecritiques

It’s been a few months since I taste-tested a new fast food oatmeal cookie.  It’s time to take care of that!

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My latest victim was Firehouse Subs.

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Appearance: 3.5  – The cookie was almost a perfect circle, and it had a beautiful golden color.  It was also easy to see raisins evenly spread throughout the whole cookie.

Texture: 2 – The cookie was deliciously moist and chewy.

Taste: 2.5 – The cookie was far from disgusting, but it was overly sweet, and it tasted fake.

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Total: 8 – Overall, Firehouse Subs’ oatmeal raisin cookie is okay if you are just craving a cookie, but it is nothing special.

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