Valentine’s Day Brunch

Even though it is the last day of February, I had to make sure I shared our brunch this month because it turned out AMAZING! You’ll notice the item we focused on the most from Valentine’s Day is the iconic heart shape. We used it for the finger sandwiches, the strawberry pastries, and even attempted to give the sausages a heart shape! This felt like the most successful one since our Halloween themed brunch back in 2019; that one still taking the first place spot because of the decorations.

I have included a lot of great stuff for you below! There are links to the recipes for Strawberry Nutella Cream Cheese French Toast and the Strawberry Breakfast Pastries. Also included are the instructions for folding the heart shaped napkin, and how we made Raspberry Cupid’s, our boozy beverage!

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6th Birthday Pawty

I cannot believe that our little pup is already 6 years old! We have a photo frame with her sweet face in our living room and on the frame it says “who rescued who”. It’s so true, 5 years ago I adopted her from a local shelter and I’m 100% sure she saved me too. After adopting her my life took a wonderful turn; I met and fell in love with my fiancé, I graduated from college, started my career, and I even got a new phone number all in the same year! This year for her birthday, we still made her a special cake to celebrate and had a small party with us and both our parents.

I’ve included the recipe for this meat cake below. Do you have any special traditions for your dog on their birthday? Comment below!

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Easy Biscuits and Gravy

This last weekend my fiancé and I had a few of our close friends over for a Christmas brunch and gift exchange. We couldn’t have everyone because of current circumstances but the few we did have over was special. It was a group of the guys (all are in our line at the wedding), so it seemed like a perfect time to test a few recipes out. This one ended up being my favorite that I tried and since I only had a small piece by the end of the meal, it was everyone’s favorite.

The hands on time was minimal and it was super easy. If you are a fan of biscuits and gravy I highly recommend trying this out. Make sure to subscribe to Take2Create for more recipes and craft ideas!

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1st Day of Cookie – Glazed Cider Cookies

There’s a special chill to the air around Christmas for me, almost like the cold winter air is mixed with holiday spirit making it crisper and somehow more welcoming against my bare face. This Christmas might be a little different in how it is celebrated but the Christmas chill is a comfort this year to me. So while I snuggle under a blanket writing this with a half-eaten glazed cider cookie next to me, I hope you all feel the warmth of the holiday season like a hot cup of spiced cider as well.

Merry Christmas Eve!

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2nd Day of Cookie – Gingerbread Teddy Bears

We couldn’t help ourselves when we saw these cute teddy bear cookies! With Christmas only a few days away, we were excited to make a little toy lookalike cookie in the famous gingerbread flavor. While it may not be as fancy as when Queen Elizabeth I would make gingerbread characters for her honorary guests, these little bears are too adorable not to try. These cookies are prepping me for the next holiday activity tonight with my fiancé, gingerbread house decorating!

These gingerbread teddy bears are such a fun activity for little kids! The trick was that we used 3 different sizes cookie scoops to make our lives easier. We made these with my nephew and it was a blast!

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3rd Day of Cookie – Malted Sugar Cookies

One of the shake flavors I love in the summer is a vanilla malt, all thanks to my dad. That’s his favorite flavor and even though chocolate is always a good option for me, I find myself ordering vanilla malt shakes when asked now. Dipping french fries in a vanilla malt? Perfect mix of salty and sweet and a little bit of caramel (how I feel malt tastes). We are always looking for a twist on a sugar cookie that will beat our classic almond sugar cookie, and this one is definitely a contender!

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4th Day of Cookie – Carrot Spice Thumbprint Cookies

While my mom and I are adamant about chocolate cakes on our birthday (and really all things chocolate), my dad and brother have always preferred carrot cake. I remember the first year I made my brother a carrot cake for his birthday all by myself. I was so proud, it was probably more than a little rough on appearance and I likely made the cream cheese icing too sweet because that’s what I thought frosting should be at 12. His birthday is the day after Christmas so making this cookie to celebrate the 4th day before Christmas reminds me of how far I have come in my baking skills from that very first carrot cake for him.

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5th Day of Cookie – Eggnog Butterscotch Stained Glass Cookies

I love when I get to go on a learning adventure about something that has happened in history. Whether it’s a large sequence of events or in this case the history of eggnog. This research project I stumbled upon on accident. I was looking up questions for a virtual Christmas trivia game for my team at work and “Where did eggnog originate?” was a suggestion. Of course, a history enthusiast will always fact check so I began digging. It’s the truth! I had no idea how old the traditional drink was though.

It originated during the medieval times as a hot wintertime drink for the aristocracy. The famous name evidently came from two words – grog, another word for rum, and noggins, a word for the small wooden mugs that it was served in. We have to go back to that wintertime drink again. Eggnog was served hot for most of its existence! Who knew? It wasn’t until around 1960 that it became a cold, non-alcoholic drink that we see at grocery stores today. Forbes has a great article on the history of eggnog, including a bit about The Eggnog Riot of 1826 (it’s true, it’s a thing that happened in the US). It definitely convinced me to make my own homemade eggnog soon, maybe George Washington’s (He loved eggnog and had his own recipe)!

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6th Day of Cookie – Pecan Pie Bars

My favorite pie during the holidays is easily a pecan pie. A cold slice of homemade pecan pie is the best leftover from Thanksgiving, am I right? I’ve even thought about asking for pecan pie for my birthday in April! This little bar is packed with all the ooey gooey crunchy pecan pie tastes and textures. If you are a fan of pumpkin pan like my family and I, you should definitely give this one a go!

Is pecan pie your favorite? What is your favorite around the holidays?

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7th Day of Cookie – Chocolate Amaretti

I’ve come to love marzipan after I tried a slice of cake with it at a famous local bakery near my house. I have had it before in desserts however, it was normally overpowered by whatever flavor it was with. This sweet slice of cake had the marzipan as the star and it has since become a favorite of mine. Between my new found love of marzipan and my Italian heritage, this Chocolate Amaretti cookie seemed like the perfect 8th day of Christmas cookie.

This cookie used a food processor and only took 5 ingredients to make! Super fun, easy, and they are delicious! We did make them a little big larger than tablespoonfuls, the cookie scoop used was 1 ½ tablespoons. I preferred these to be larger than the normal cookie and would highly recommend trying it as well. 

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