Honey Citrus Champagne Cupcakes

Happy New Year!! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season! My boyfriend and I had a New Years Eve party this year, complete with a champagne bar, dessert bar, and a DIY photo booth! Minted sent me the banner and signs as well as paper cups, plates, and napkins to really snazz up our party. Aren’t those signs so cute? The theme shown in the photos is “Sparkle Everywhere” Their party decor is really great; Minted has decor for any party you can imagine! You can build your own package or choose from three suites: unique party, perfect party, or dream party. Minted has you covered from the napkins to the table confetti to even adorable paper straws and cake plates. You can also order invitations that match your theme! The Champagne Bar was a huge hit. I included suggested champagne cocktails but creativity was encouraged. My favorite combination was St. Germaine filled with sparkling wine and topped with some cranberry juice. We had a blast in the photo booth and people had fun with all of the props! The dessert bar turned out great too! I will be sharing recipes that I made for it over the coming … Continue reading

Star Anise Snickerdoodles

Boy did I start my cookie baking late this year! I can’t believe Christmas is just days away. I was recently sent  a beautiful carved cinnamon bark box with 3 oz of Vietnam cinnamon by World Vision so I wanted to make a cookie recipe that would feature cinnamon so I had to make snickerdoodles! This recipe from Cooking Light adds ground star anise to traditional sugar cookies for a subtle different take on the classic. World Vision is a Gift Catalog that allows you to give a truly meaningful gift this holiday season.  The catalog is filled with items for every budget ($16 to $39,000) that help children and families in need worldwide. The World Vision Gift Catalog offers an alternative (or addition to) traditional holiday gift giving. You can choose a gift for these families that fits your financial abilities and personal tastes. For example, a gardener may enjoy giving hybrid or drought-resistant seeds to a farmer with a donation of just $17 to help one family. With a financial contribution, the gift giver can select one of 36 items that you will get while helping a person in need. The cinnamon used in this recipe comes with … Continue reading

Hot Cocoa Cookies

It’s that time of year again! I signed up for the  Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap again this year and got some great ideas for what to bake for Christmas! In its third year, the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap helps raise money for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, a national non-profit organization committed to funding new therapies used in the fight against pediatric cancer, which claims the lives of more children in the US than any other disease. The swap raised $13,778.40 this year, raised through blogger participants donations and matching donations from OXO, Dixie Crystals, Gold Medal, and Grandma’s Molasses. The goal was $10,000, so to get nearly $4,000 more in donations is amazing! So here’s how the actual swapping part of this works: I was assigned three food bloggers and made one dozen cookies for each of them. In return, I received three different boxes of cookies from other bloggers. Last year, I received a batch of hot cocoa cookies that were SO good I was craving them again this year. So I decided to make some myself! The chocolate cookies are topped with mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, and a touch of grated chocolate. I based my recipe off of Rachel Ray’s … Continue reading

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