Monthly Archives: February 2013

Skinny Brownies

Skinny Brownies. Life Changing – for the baker with a sweet tooth that can’t really eat butter.

All in the food processor. You start with some oats (for my grandpa and I, gluten free rolled oats). Blend those until they’re closer to flour than oats.

Add EVERYTHING else (but the peanut butter) to the food processor (or even blender). Melt the peanut butter, pour and mix lightly with a knife into a greased 8×8 baking sheet. Bake.

Easy right? And so, so, so tasty. I found the recipe here with tons of other tasty looking recipes.

Skinny (butterless) Peanut butter Swirl Brownies

3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (I used Jif Natural I believe!)
6 oz. low fat vanilla greek yogurt (could use fat free – I used fat free)
1/4 cup skim milk (or almond milk – I used it to use some up in the fridge!)
1 large egg
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 8×8 inch pan with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
(I pre ground the oats before this step because the first time I found them not ground up enough by just grinding with all the ingredients)
Place all of the ingredients except for the peanut butter into a blender or food processor. For easier blending, place the liquid ingredients into the blender first. Blend until mix is smooth and oats are ground up. You will have to stop the blender and scrape down the sides a few times.
Pour batter into prepared baking dish. Batter will be thin. Microwave peanut butter for about 30 seconds. Drop melted peanut butter by spoonfuls onto the batter, swirling gently with a knife to create a marbled effect. (Try not to overmix!)
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until brownies begin to pull away from the sides of the pan. Brownies will be extra fudgy, so be sure to wait until COMPLETELY cooled. I stored them in the fridge, you can put them there, then cut them. Cut into 12 squares and taste the lovely, somewhat healthy brownie goodness. (that does not tasty “healthy” in any sense of the word!)

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Skinny Brownies and Graham Cracker Pie


Please excuse the iPhone picture. I’ve been baking! Monday night I made dinner for my grandpa and he LOVES graham cracker pie, which is just a basic vanilla custard, graham cracker crust, and meringue topping. Here’s the pie, pre-meringue. I did not make the crust, however, and grandpa says it’s not the same…. so next time I’ll just make it. I used this recipe for the pie, but I used 1/2 cup sugar, because I remember my mom’s recipe only used that much. Also ran out of sugar for the meringue, so I used honey.

Those brownies are the best brownies I’ve ever made. I’ll share the recipe when I can take more pictures of the process but they’re part of my recent realization that not cooking or baking at all was leading to me eating worse foods for me then baking and cooking! I stopped baking in December – my doctor told me I have high cholesterol. I’m young and I know I have a family history and genetic pre-disposition to it, but still butter has lots of saturated fats, which is what I was told to stay away from. Easiest way to cut fats in my diet was to stop baking.

These brownies have no fat or gluten, I made them with things I had readily available, and they’re tasty. Finally. Something to satisfy the sweet tooth without 40 grams of fat.

I’m probably going to go home right now and eat some!

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Rings Today

Rings Today

Lizard ring, owl ring, penguin ring, spoon ring and a chilean ring.

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Julep Box Review

During the snow storm we had the other week, I didn’t shovel or do ANYTHING on Saturday. I did, however, shop online. Besides Graze, I’ve found a couple other monthly/weekly subscription box online things. Birch Box is another and I hope everyone’s heard of it (I’ve signed up for the waiting list for it). Graze, and then Julep is another. Julep is a nail polish one. There are good and bad reviews online if you search them, but if you use the code FREEBOX you can get your first box for free, just pay $4 for shipping. Go here to get your’s!

So I went to the website, took the style quiz, and I don’t remember what “style” I was supposedly, but I figured, $4 for two nail polishes? Plus, they gave me an option to add on three items for about 50% off of the price. This, this is why I’m writing about them. I added a Freedom topcoat to my cart. It advertised itself as a gel-like top coat for normal polish. It dries in 2-5 minutes in sunlight or in 2 minutes under a bulb. Like, just under your normal lamp. Yes, your polish itself has to be dry and it won’t dry nicely if it’s not but my nail polish has been peeling off my nails constantly. I can’t even paint my nails at night and expect them to be chip-free the next morning.

I’ve gotten a shellac manicure since which should last until next week so I’ll test it again next week, but I was very impressed over all.


I have not, though, tried any of the colors out. I love the look of them, though!


This is my manicure with the freedom top coat over it – it lasted two days (then I took it off because of the shellac I had scheduled), with no chips. With my oily nails, this is a near miracle.

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New York Yarn

Loft Yarn from Purl Soho. I got two skeins. I’m hoping to make a scarf (lace?) for myself.

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Add new experiences

My normal routine goes like this: Tues-Sat: work. I might go and spend time with my boyfriend after work, but normally I go home. I sometimes make myself dinner, normally just have a big meal during the day and have a snack at night. I work late two nights a week, and days I don’t, I like to spend time watching hulu or netflix and knitting.

Now, Friday nights are hard sometimes because I have to work the next morning and sometimes I’ll go to a party or out to dinner or dancing so, sometimes, that’s interesting (like Saturday mornings I’m sometimes the teeniest bit hung over. Not often!). Saturdays, weather permitting, I go running after I get out of work, then, I’ll have some “me” time (paint my nails, do a hair treatment, eat some chocolate, you get the idea!) then I might go out to dinner with my boyfriend or friends maybe go to a party. Sundays are for laundry and putzing around the house. Mondays are for errands, grocery shopping and sometimes cooking.

And that’s it. I’ve been doing that for about three months now. I do things I enjoy but day trips are so easy to do where I’m located (two hours from Boston or New York).

So, yesterday, Christana and I took a bus to NYC for the day.


We went to Soho.


Everyone knows Purl Soho is the best, at least I hope you do! I love this store. I wish it was my local yarn store. Almost as much as I wish WEBS was my LYS but Purl always has niche yarns – I picked up some Loft by Brooklyn Tweed. Hoping that I will be back soon – there was some more yarn I wanted just didn’t want to buy ALL the yarns on this one trip.


We did meet up with some other people for a bit and then went to the met. This girl was on a mission to instagram this shot.


I’ve never been to the met and it was very much fun – hoping to go again and soon. Maybe on a less crowded day!


All and all it was a good day, we ate good food and chatted as we headed to our various destinations  It was definitely a day made possible by the introduction of an iphone into my life – I used it constantly to look up where we wanted to go was! I do have more various moments and share as well as yarn, more later. (we DID miss our bus – somewhat epic and crazy taxi ride, stressful running through port authority and waving after the bus – still did miss it. LUCK us – it was not the last bus – so we just had to wait 2 hours for the next, so at least we made it home, though at 1am)

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What’s more than this?

What's more than this?

I went to New York City yesterday with a good friend. We went to the Met and this is the Egyptian section. It was nice to get out of my normal routine of everything and go somewhere that’s more than me, more than Connecticut.

Although I did meet some people that blamed me for the world’s problems (a.k.a harassed us then called us racist. Weird combination but it happened), we also met some people that helped us with no second thought. Nearly unheard of for New Yorkers. I got to see a good friend and I got to go to Purl Soho and other various stops – more about that later.

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I think I heard about through Tumblr. It’s invite only in the US right now (I think I still have two invites, comment if you’d like one!) and I thought it was a very neat and afforable idea. They send you a weekly box of snacks, four little compartments and you can choose if you like them or not. What’s nice is that real people make this real, delicious food and send it to real people. I like how much “real” there is involved here. I loved mostly everything I got, and what’s nice is it’s all relatively low-calorie snacks. I was sad about the amount that was in the box, I’m hoping as they expand I can maybe have an option to order a “full sized” version of some of the more delicious snacks.


I loved, loved,loved the oatcakes and caramelized onion dip. I want so many of them. I also was pleasantly surprised that I loved the tutti-frutti mix of dried fruits, it was very flavorful. I can’t wait for the next one. Also, if you’d like an invite, your first box is FREE (comment below!). They cost $5 after that including shipping, which is so cheap! And all the packaging is recyclable!

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Back to Reality

Really, what happened Saturday? I made my brother and sister go out and shovel, immediately felt terrible and though they did the bulk of the work, I did go out and direct for a bit. Then. At about 4pm, I decided I did. not. want. to. cook. and we went to a chinese place next to the grocery store which happened to be open. We walked. The car was still against the garage, and held there by approximately three feet of snow.


We came home and about 6pm I found out it was probably going to be an impossibility for anyone to plow our driveway. Our friend that I had spoken to for a bit said he’d be able to possibly help but was unsure when and the other person that said they could help initially now said that the plows were having trouble pushing this much snow, let alone getting into our driveway at the right angle. And, my parent’s driveway is on one side adjacent to the neighbors driveway and on the other side there’s a 3 foot wall (which was now 7 feet). I had my siblings shovel off the wall four different times, just so we could put the snow somewhere. My dad has a snowblower but it’s small. We had to break up the snow and shovel off the top layer to get it to go through the snow blower. Otherwise, it would get buried. It was a lot of work but we finished in about 4 hours.


That was Sunday after three hours of work.

I did make the young kids shovel mostly and I worked the snow blower, which honestly wasn’t that easy because mostly I had to push it through drifts!


But I made myself some grapefruit/orange white sangria as reward.



And (baked) doughnuts too.

Hope everyone else in the northeast was able to shovel out!


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Today: The Day I Refuse to do Anything


So, that is the front of my parent’s house. I’m staying here for a week because they’re in the bahamas (right? poor them!). We got probably three feet of snow. I couldn’t see my dad’s car. Well, I still can’t. I sent my brother and sister out to shovel. I’m the best big sister!

We’re supposed to have a friend come and plow but he hasn’t come yet soooo we’ll see what happens. I hate shoveling so so so much so I really hope he comes soon!



I did get to go home early yesterday. I left at three and I was happy I did because it wasn’t easy getting home even two hours early!


I did finish this sock this morning – it’s for my cousin in California who has very, very large feet. I’m hoping to get a lot more of it done this weekend. I have today off (I’m normally working right now!), and I’m watching movies. Maybe I’ll sew later!

Everyone if you see what I see out the window, only go out to shovel!!!



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