Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Five Favorites: It's June!

Playing with Hallie and her Five Favorite Fanatics.

Strawberry picking!
Eamon at 21 months

We haven't even gone yet this year, but it's on the summer to-do list!  The kids love gorging themselves on fresh strawberries while they pick a few, and I love coming home and making a cake with fresh strawberries.  Yummy!  Then in July, it's raspberry picking and blueberry picking in August, followed by apples in September.  Love!


If you want an easy and delicious white cake with white frosting recipe, here it is!  I've made it exactly as the recipe reads, and also with vanilla extract in place of the almond extract and they are both delicious.  I love sheet cake because the ratio of cake to frosting is perfect!

I just ordered this for Xander's 2nd birthday next month.  

(But I think we will have to break it out before then...he's too little to care, right?)


Going to the beach this summer needs to be streamlined for Phil or he can't handle all 5 kids and their stuff.  (What a saint, I can't handle 5 kids at the beach alone, never mind all their stuff!)  This beach cart makes it possible.  It folds up in the car, then you get to the beach (or pool) and throw everything in it and only have one thing to drag instead of towels and bags of sand toys and chairs and floaties and sunscreen and a cooler.  So much easier!

Anne from Bazin Chronicles nicely reminded me that I could join in their Mystery Ingredient Mondays, Mint Edition with my mint chocolate brownie recipe:

Mint Chocolate Brownies
 So easy to make but seem more complicated...which is exactly the kind of thing I like to serve to guests :)

Just bake these brownies as directed:

While they are baking, unwrap a whole box of these (this is a great kid cooking opportunity):

And when the brownies come out of the oven, layer the candies on top and once they start melting, just spread it around like frosting.

Let cool (sometimes I put them in the fridge to let the topping harden faster) and serve.

 I think the next mystery ingredient is jalapenos, which means I need to remember to have the milk ready for my eye ;)


  1. I adore how aware you are of how awesome it is that 'going to the beach' can be a regular activity in your home. The jealousy i feel about this particular thing is hard to describe :)

  2. My kids saw your #3. I'm doomed.

    1. AnonymousJune 19, 2013

      Ha! Bonnie, I was just going to comment that, "I am not letting my kids see this!"

  3. Those brownies look so dangerous!!!

  4. Strawberry picking ended here in the middle of May but we are already looking forward to blueberry picking!

  5. Your brownies are yummy:)

  6. that cake looks so good!

  7. Chocolate mint brownies are my all time favorite! I'm so happy someone else has discovered this secret because they're too good to not make.

  8. Strawberries, texas sheet cake and mint brownies...I'm hungry!

    This reminds me that we MUST go strawberry picking in the next week or so...strawberry season seems to last such a short time..and we love strawberries so much! Although the farm near us, doesn't let you eat a lot of berries (they say you can eat one as a taste..but not as many as you want.) :(

  9. I think I've seen you post that brownie recipe before...LOVE! I took 5 to the public pool last week...thought I might lose my mind, but the 2 oldest were as good as gold and such helpers. It was the almost-3 and newly-turned-4 year old that about pushed me over the edge! LOL

  10. Oh Colleen...Just when I began a small tiny change in my eating habits... that Texas vanilla sounds yummo...

  11. I have made your mint chocolate brownies two or three times since the original post and every time they barely last a day! :) They are delicious!
    I will be trying that sheet cake recipe soon!!

  12. When you break out the #3... I'm definitely coming over. I haven't gone strawberry picking yet, either. SOON! Christmas tree shop has beach carts like that. I think they're around 50.

  13. We have that SAME cart (for years) and it is one of the best things they've invented! I'm like your hubs :)

  14. Those brownies look amazing! And I'm not really into sheet cakes, but this one might change my mind. :)


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