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Fuschia + Red

I'm always really reluctant to write in a public space that I'll be out of town and leaving my home empty heavily guarded by neighbors and association residents. You just never know when some Interwebs crazy is going to want to steal baby clothing, on-sale kitchen utensils, and a large collection of plastic Forever 21 accessories. They didn't know that the $2 leather skirt came with me.

I have lots of warm-weather outfits to make all of you cold-weather dwellers sigh in disdain (and by "all of you" I mean "me"), but those will have to wait a day or two until I manage to upload our hundreds of pictures. In the meantime, here's an outfit from before we took off. Aaand because we were getting ready to go out of the country, we were, of course, scrambling to get everything ready and took a few non-excellent shots in between.


Cardigan: Banana Republic
Blazer: J.Crew
Jeans: H&M
Belt: H&M
Scarf: France
Wedges: Target
Wedding rings: Husband via Jewelers' Row in Philadelphia

I'd been wanting to try this color combo for a while, and was hoping to do it in a way that didn't make me look like a giant Valentine. Feedback? Mission accomplished? Hopefully?

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap



I decided to participate in this cookie swap, in which we each received 3 matches, made cookies for them, and sent them off. Such a fun idea! I absolutely loved receiving cookies from such cool folks, and all were entirely delicious.

I got some amazing homemade oreos from Bethany. She sent along some store bought Oreos, as well, and asked whether to bake or buy. My vote? BAKE!

I also received some delicious gingerbread men/mitts/other assorted holiday shapes from Andrea. These were so cute!

Finally, I got some incredible lemon lavender shortbread cookies from Jamie that may be my new favorite cookies ever. I kind of have a thing for lavender - D made me lavender ricotta ice cream and a lavender cake for my birthday this year. I sort of did a happy dance when I saw these cookies because I know not everyone loves lavender and dark chocolate, but I totally thought I hit the jackpot.

Thank you thank you to you fabulous ladies!


As for me, I sent off some buckeye cookies to my recipients. I love peanut butter and chocolate together, so I thought these would be fun to try. I sneaked a taste and turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself, although I'm a failure and completely forgot to take pictures. If any of my recipients happen to have a picture, let me know. :)



Chocolate Peanut Butter Surprise Cookies (aka Buckeye Cookies)

(adapted very slightly from Sweet Pea's Kitchen)

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I used 1 cup all-purpose and 1/2 cup whole wheat)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar (plus more for rolling)
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter, divided
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375ยบ F. Spray a baking sheet and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together sugars, butter and 1/4 cup of peanut butter until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla and egg. Stir in the flour mixture, blending well.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix together powdered sugar and remaining 3/4 cup of peanut butter until smooth.
  5. Pull off a heaping tablespoon of cookie dough and flatten with your hands. Take about 1 teaspoon of peanut butter mixture and place it in the center of the chocolate dough. Wrap the chocolate dough around the peanut butter center, pressing to seal. Roll the cookie into a ball and roll the cookie in the sugar. Place cookies on the prepared baking sheet 2 inches apart. Using the bottom of a glass, flatten each cookie to about a 1/2 inch thickness (I made them a little flatter because I prefer slightly crispier cookies).
  6. Bake in preheated oven for 7 to 9 minutes. Let stand on the baking sheet for 2 minutes, then remove to a wire rack.