Valentine Cake Pops & Cake Balls

I made these cake pops for Valentine’s Day. These are just like the Christmas Cake Balls that I made, except these are (obviously) on a stick. Cake pops! They are just as good as the cake balls. Maybe even better because they are so fun to eat!

You can go to Bakerella’s blog for detailed directions on how to make cake balls, cake pops and cupcake pops. Her cake pop creations include Hello Kitty, reindeer, Santa hats & Christmas trees for Christmas, turkeys for Thanksgiving, pumpkins, mummies, werewolves, Frankenstein, skulls, black cats, bats, witches, ghosts, & spiders for Halloween, puppies, cows, smiley faces, cupcakes & many more. You will also find many other treats on her blog. She does some wonderful things!

A few were made into cake balls.

Chocolate Turtle Cake

I found this recipe for this Chocolate Turtle Cake
Being a lover of Turtle candy and all things
chocolate & caramel, I had to try this recipe.
With this cake, you get a triple dose of chocolate,
with plenty of pecans and caramel.
It was so delicious!

Chocolate Turtle Cake

(Recipe by Visions of Sugar Plum)
Makes: 8-10 servings

Cake Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup dark or regular cocoa powder
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 1 1/3 cups whole milk
Ganache Ingredients:
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 cups finely chopped pecans, toasted, plus additional whole pecans for decorating
  • 1 tablespoon mini chocolate chips (optional)
  • Caramel sauce

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Butter and flour 2 (9-inch) cake pans.
    In a medium sized mixing bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, using a mixer on medium speed, beat 3/4 cup butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar and vanilla, until creamy, about 2 minutes.
  4. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until well combined.
  5. Beat in 1 cup melted chocolate chips until combined.
  6. Reduce mixer speed to low and beat in flour mixture, alternating with milk, until well combined, about 2-3 minutes.
  7. Evenly scrape batter into prepared cake pans and smooth the surface with a spatula.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees F, for 35-40 minutes, or until cake edges pull away from the pan, and a toothpick inserted into cake comes out with moist crumbs attached.
  9. Cool for 12 minutes before running a knife around edges and inverting onto wire racks to cool completely.
  10. To make the ganache, melt 1/4 cup butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.
  11. Stir in heavy cream and bring to a boil; turn heat off and stir in 2 cups chocolate chips until melted and smooth.
  12. Spread ganache evenly onto first layer of cake and top with about 1/3 of the pecans.
  13. Place second cake layer on top.
  14. Spread the rest of the ganache over cake top and sides.
  15. Sprinkle and top with remaining pecans.
  16. Decorate the top with whole pecans.
  17. Sprinkle mini chocolate chips over the top, and drizzle caramel everywhere.


I found this site a couple weeks ago.
I just got around to trying it.
This is something fun to do when you need to waste a little time.
You just type in whatever words come to mind,
and a collage of those words is created.
You can then change the color, font, size and even language.
For this one, I typed in the url for my blog,
and it made a collage out of words that have been used in my blog.

For this one, I typed in a few of my favorite things
(and one of my favorite people!).
Check it out and see what you can create!

My Favorite Children's Book

This is my favorite children’s book. It has been for many years.
It’s such a humorous little story and so much fun to read!

The last time Elephant had to sneeze it was chaos! The fish lost their scales and almost froze. The zebra lost his stripes and the leopard lost his spots. The alligator’s snout turned inside out.
See what happens when Elephant declares to all of his animal friends that he has to sneeze and see how the smallest animal does the only thing he can to keep Elephant from sneezing!
This is the copy I have, but you can get a newer edition here.

This is another book by the same author that I have and enjoy,
though the story of Elephant is still my favorite!

Through It All

Danny Thomas, founder of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, said, "No child should die in the dawn of life." Yet, this unpredictable life brings unpredictable and unwanted tragedy to reality so many times.

In 2005, I began donating to St. Jude. In doing so, I have been touched many times on numerous occasions. In the pictures that I see of these children, I am continually captivated by the sweet smiles on their precious faces and the look of innocence in their beautiful eyes. And it saddens me to think that, in their short time, these innocent children have seen, experienced and felt more pain and suffering than most adults will in their lifetime.

Yet, the spirit of a child cannot be broken- even with cancer, sickness, pain and, sometimes, even death fighting against them. They have an unwillingness to waver or falter in the face of imminent danger and catastrophe.

I asked myself, "If these children can continue to smile as they rise and grow through all of this, then, why can't I?" I wrote this poem in dedication to all of the wonderful children who have been a part of St. Jude...the ones that have fought and the ones that are still fighting to live a full and happy life. May God bless them all...

Through It All
As I journey down the broken path of life
Everyday I face my share of sorrow, pain and strife.
The mountains rise before me, the ground shakes at my feet.
The circumstances of this life try to get the best of me.
At times my friends forsake me, and I feel alone.
I wonder if I will make it, as I try to carry on.
The road ahead is bumpy, filled with many twists and turns.
And I wonder if these struggles are there to help me learn.
Then, I look around me, and I see heartache all around.
I see a family that's lost a loved one; I watch dreams fall to the ground.
With each new day and step I take I think of all the suffering.
Some live their lives and they are full while others can only dream.
I realize then that all my troubles are not as bad as they once seemed.
Through the darkness, though sometimes dim, a light has always gleamed.
I've lived through lonely days, sleepless nights and moments of hopelessness.
Through it all, though, I have learned that I am truly blessed.
I face some storms, I feel the rain, and sometimes I stumble and fall.
But the storms will pass, the rain will cease and the sun will shine bright on us all.
And though my steps have faltered, I have stood the tests of time.
My faith is restored and I gain the strength each time to continue to rise!

Andes Chocolate Mint Cookies

If you or someone you know is a chocolate mint lover (like I am), these are the perfect cookies to satisfy your chocolate/mint craving. I love the way the mints look after they melt on top of the cookie. Sometimes you can still see some of the green swirled in with the chocolate. Yummy! You can find these cookies and so many more wonderful recipes at Stephanie’s Kitchen and Delightful Delicacies.

Andes Chocolate Mint Cookies
(recipe from Delightful Delicacies)

¾ c. butter (1½ stick)
1½ cup brown sugar
2 tbsp. water
12 oz. (2 cups) chocolate chips
2 eggs
2 ½ cups flour
1 ½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
Andes Mints (1 for each cookie)
I usually use the Andes Mint Baking Chips

  1. In a large bowl melt together the butter, brown sugar, water and chocolate chips.

  2. Beat in eggs.

  3. Add in sifted remaining dry ingredients until blended.

  4. Chill 1 hour or overnight.

  5. Shape into 1 inch balls and place on greased cookie sheet.

  6. Bake @ 325°F for 8-10 minutes.

  7. Place mint on top (you may want to place back in the oven for a second or two). Spread when melted.

  8. Transfer to wire racks to cool.


9 Ways to Handle Stress

Are you under stress? These days it seems like everyone is stressed about one thing are another. A friend of mine gave me this small list a while back. Next time you get stressed, give one of these a try.

1. Use your Mastercard to pay your Visa bill.

2. Pop some popcorn without putting the lid on.

3. When someone tells you to "Have a Nice Day", tell them you have other plans.

4. Make a list of things you have already done.

5. Thumb through National Geographic and draw underwear on the natives.

6. Drive to work in reverse.

7. Bill your doctor for the time you spent in his waiting room.

8. Read the dictionary backwards and look for subliminal messages.

9. Jam tiny marshmallows up your nose and try to sneeze them out.

Have a GREAT day!

Valentine Cards

I've been looking at all of the Valentine cards available out there. I thought I'd give you a short list of where you can find some of my favorites!

These sweetheart Valentines are a perfect way to let someone know you think they are cute or cool…or a QT Pie.

You can give someone this card to let them know you are WILD about them!

You can go here for a cute snail Valentine card.

Go here for some adorable free Valentines to download. If you want them black and white so the recipient can color the card, go here.

I love owls, so this owl valentine is my favorite.

Tricia Rennea’s blog is one of my favorites; she has the cutest drawings! Her
lollipop holder valentines are adorable!

These are perfect for little cowboys & cowgirls. They even have a tiny envelope that match!

All of these and more can be found here, here & here.

Valentine Envelopes

I found this cute template to make mini envelopes. You can make these for anything (mini birthday card, gift tags, etc.), but I think they are the perfect size for Valentine cards. You can print them on colored paper or paper with a design, or you can print them on white paper and decorate with markers and stickers. Whatever you decide, these are fun to make...and so cute! You can get the template for these envelopes here and an idea that uses them here.
The smitten hearts paper used to make the above envelope can be found on Tricia Rennea’s blog (one that I absolutely adore!).

Heart Shaped Paper Clips

Found this idea on stumbleupon. Of course, I had to pick up the nearest paper clip and try it for myself. The first few were kind of difficult, but I finally got it to go the right way! Cute! Now I just need to find some some more pink (and maybe red) paper clips. These would be cute attached to Valentine cards. You can find the stumbleupon article here, or you can click here for the original post over at How About Orange… (a Great blog I'm glad I discovered!).


I made this cake last weekend for Shawn's grandpa. Everything is edible except for the "fishing pole". It's yellow cake with buttercream frosting, and all of the decorations are fondant.

The Cross

This cake was made for 2 of my most favorite people: my parents. Mom's birthday is in October, and October is Pastor Appreciation Month. We always have a joint party for them at church, and there's always cake.
I decided to make the cake this time. It was an experience! We had to make a trip into town, so we didn't get started until late. We were up all night! I was working on the cake at the bar, then, at one point I decided to move it to the table. It broke in the middle and almost fell off the cake board, but we saved it just in time!

Despite everything, the cake was good, and I got GREAT compliments. That always makes it worthwhile.

Carol was a great help. She stayed up all night helping me. (She's the other half of the "we" I mentioned earlier.) It's great to have such a wonderful sister!

And such wonderful parents...I love my Mom & Dad.
Ian always ends up in the picture.


I love cupcakes!
Cupcakes make me happy.
Cupcakes with sprinkles make me extra happy!
So, for my birthday last year, instead of a cake, I had cupcakes.
It was a Happy Birthday indeed!

Jake helped me blow out my candles since his birthday was the next day.


This is my boyfriend, Shawn.
Shawn is one of my most favorite people!
He likes to fish. A LOT! It's his favorite thing.

I like to go fishing with him, but while he fishes,
I sit in the back of the boat and read (or sleep).
You know those fisherman...
they got to be out there at the crack of dawn!

I guess the fish are early risers, too.

Since Shawn had surprised me with a birthday party last year, I thought I'd return the favor. I had everything planned out. I was going to make him the cutest cake. I had been ordering stuff and planning for weeks. Then, Hurricane Gustav decided to pay us a visit. We were without lights for almost a week. Plans were ruined; time ran out, but we had the party anyway.

You think he's smiling because of the party?

Nah...I think it's 'cause he went fishing earlier that day!

Shawn, Me & Ian

Christmas Cake Balls

Bakerella makes the cutest and sweetest little cakes! She said it best when she said,

"They are super easy to make and even easier to eat."

They are also easy to make. Just bake a cake, and after the cake is cooked and cooled, crumble it up into a bowl. Then mix in a can of frosting. Roll into balls and place on a cookie sheet. Put the cookie sheet in the freezer for 30 minutes to an hour (until they are firm). Melt chocolate or vanilla bark, and dip the cake balls in the chocolate or vanilla. Place on wax paper or cookie sheet and let chocolate harden. Eat & enjoy!

You can go here for more detailed directions on how to make these. You will also find many other ways to decorate these little treats on Bakerella's blog.

My Font

Go here to make your handwriting into your own personal font.
Fun & simple. Anyone can do it!

This is my font-Antoinette:


I LOVE sprinkles! My boyfriend doesn't understand why I love them so much; they just make me happy! I'm always buying more, even though it will probably take me forever to use what I have. The only problem with sprinkles is that they take up so much counter space. It must be the round bottles. Ever since I saw Bakerella spice up her kitchen, I've wanted to do something similar with mine. The other day I found these at Michael's:

They come 6 in a pack, so I bought me a couple to get started. I'm going to get my Dad to build me a rack/shelf to sit them on (the preacher is a carpentar). Right now they are just kind of stacked on top of each other. But, soon....there will be order!