Creative Thank You Notes

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This post is long overdue, you can’t exactly tell, but it’s from Christmas. Fortunately, it’s an always relevant topic! My mom ALWAYS made us write thank you notes. I have vivid memories of packing thank you notes in our bags we packed for Christmas so we could write notes to everyone on our way back home. I think thank you notes are important and unfortunately, a lost art.

Since baby girl can’t exactly write thank you notes at her age, I thought a great way to show our appreciation for all of her Christmas goodies was to have pictures of her playing with everything!  

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I still wrote a little thank you on the back. I am of course thankful too! So, there you have it…they are creative, cheap, and thoughtful, plus Chickadee got to play a part! I think I’ll do them for her birthday too. I can’t believe she’ll be 2 in less than 3 months!  

 

Flax Seed Waffle Mix

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Thank for sticking with me as I post one recipe after another, there will be more DIYs and crafts soon….but for now cooking is the only “project” I have time for. Well, cooking and raising a 21 month old and 3 month old. We do have an occasional house project here and there that I can’t wait to share with you soon. I’ll try to get a post together when I am not trying to dig my way out of the endless pile of diapers and laundry!

We are HUGE breakfast eaters around here. III and I love it so much we served breakfast for dinner at our wedding. I’m always trying to find new and different ways to jazz up old recipes. A delicious waffle recipe is definitely necessary. I’ve tried several, but this one I am sharing today, has to be a favorite!

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You can always cook with a box mix, but I prefer to make my own…this way I know exactly what we are all eating. It’s really simple to do!

Flax Seed Waffle Mix
Yields 8
The best waffle recipe you'll ever try! Crisp on the outside soft & warm on the inside. You'll never buy a box waffle mix again.
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Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 and 3/4 cups of whole wheat all purpose flour
  2. 1 tsp baking powder
  3. 1/4 tsp salt
  4. 1/4 cup flax seed
  5. 1 tsp nutmeg
  6. 1 tbsp cinnamon
  7. 2 egg yolks
  8. 1 and 3/4 cups of milk
  9. 1/2 cup canola oil
  10. 1 tsp vanilla
  11. 2 egg whites
Instructions
  1. 1. Heat waffle maker
  2. 2. In a medium size bowl mix all DRY ingredients (running the flour through a sifter makes the waffles more smooth!)
  3. 3. In a separate bowl mix milk, canola oil, 2 egg yolks, and vanilla
  4. 4. With a hand mixer beat egg whites until they are white and stiff peaks form
  5. 5. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix well.
  6. 6. Fold in egg whites
  7. 7. Spoon batter onto a greased waffle maker
  8. 8. Serve and enjoy!
A Step In The Journey http://astepinthejourney.com/

 Serve with toppings of your choice! We prefer syrup and fruit usually…and if we feel like getting crazy, powdered sugar! And if you are looking for a waffle maker, we use this one…and my mom has a Belgium one similar to this onewhich I love too!

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Homemade Croutons

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As I’ve mentioned before I have a privilege of staying home with Chickadee and Sprout. One of our activities during the school year is attending MOPS (Moms of Preschoolers). MOPS is a great group of Christian women who meet all over the country to discuss their faith, children, family, and marriage. I made some great new friends this year and even though the program is over for the year, my table group has still gotten together. Most recently we met for dinner at our mentor mom’s house. 

She had a great idea for a pot luck dinner. A BIG salad where we all brought different toppings. She had lettuce and chicken and everyone else brought a topping of their choice. I signed up for croutons and decided to make them myself (with a little help from the one and only, Ree Drummond).

They start with french bread.

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Cut into slices.

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Then into cubes. I actually used my kitchen sheers to cut the bread slices into cubes.

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Drizzle with olive oil, garlic salt, and pepper. Then toss into a hot skillet.

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You want to toss the croutons until they start to brown on all sides. Then store in a sealed container until reader to use! They turned out really great. One loaf of french bread made enough croutons for all 10 of us. 

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The Color Box

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I have to give all the credit to my husband. I was feeding Sprout and he was heading out to cut the grass. We needed to contain Chickadee for a few minutes so he put her in an empty Amazon box and gave her a box of crayons.

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Yall, she had the BEST time. She loves coloring and will sit at her table in the playroom and draw for hours minutes. So think of the color box as a coloring book with endless possibilities. 

III and I have both joined in the fun! We’ve added shapes and labeled colors since those are what she is learning right now. She loves pointing to things and saying “color?” 

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We are on our third color box now….thank goodness for Amazon Prime and my ordering addiction :) 

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Don’t you love free toddler entertainment? Speaking of coloring, you should check out this “almost” free coloring matching activity I created last week. Also these paint sensory bags are still a hit!

 

Sea Salt Caramel Apple Trifle

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We moved into the BEST neighborhood. It’s movie like really…Easter Egg hunts, 4th of July parties, Hayrides on Halloween, and neighbors that bring you delicious baked bread and leave freshly picked strawberries on your front porch. Everyone has been so welcoming & even gone the extra mile and invited us over for cookouts. They really were the Hostess with the Mostest! I already shared these “Kitchen Sink” cookies that I brought to one get together, and now I want to share my newest creation that we brought to our most recent neighbor get together!

This trifle is so easy to put together! Hostess really did all the hard work for me because I didn’t have to bake the cake layer usually found in trifles! 

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You see they are doing a limited addition Sea Salt Caramel flavor in both their CupCakes and Zingers. Each cupcake if made of yellow cake, a caramel creme filling, iced with caramel icing, and topped with the Hostess known Original Squiggle® & a dash sea salt. They will be on store shelves nationwide until July 31.

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I was a little skeptical at first, because my grandmother pretty much makes the best caramel icing that ever graced the earth, but I must admit Hostess did a pretty good job on theirs! 

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For the Sea Salt Caramel Apple Trifle you’ll need: 1 box of Hostess Sea Salt Caramel CupCakes, 1 large can of caramel apples, 1 large box of instant vanilla pudding (and milk), 2 tubs of whipped cream, and caramel sauce. 

Prepare the pudding to package instructions.

Once you have everything ready it’s time to layer. Start with half the apples on bottom, then half the pudding, 1 tub of cool whip, now place the 8 cupcakes. Repeat ending with the whipped cream. Refrigerate. Drizzle the caramel sauce on top right before serving. 

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 The Hostess Sea Salt Caramel Cupcakes really made this dessert delicious. I can only imagine how good it would be if you added in a layer of the Zingers as well!

For more information about these limited time treats, be sure to follow Hostess on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!

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Hostess sponsored this blog post, but as always the opinions are all mine.