Peppermint Hot Chocolate Mix

Winter is…cold. (Thank you Captain Obvious) I’m not a fan. Therefore, there have been lots of hot bevvies filling my day – mainly coffee, but a little hot tea, some apple cider, a hot toddy here or there, and of course, hot chocolate.

I made these for Christmas gifts, and thought they turned out pretty cute…I do love a mason jar. Since my kids are constantly asking for hot chocolate, I am getting ready to mix some up to have on hand at home. It’s nice to have a dry mix available that the kids can prepare themselves.

You can layer it all pretty for gift giving, or mix everything together and store in a sealed container so it’s ready to go. One of my friends who received this did say it wasn’t quite sweet enough for her taste, so you may have to adjust the amount of sugar to your liking.

Peppermint Hot Chocolate Mix

1/2 cup dry (powdered) milk
1/2 cup cocoa, unsweetened
1/2 cup sugar (adjust to taste)
pinch of salt
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips
1/4 cup crushed peppermint candy
1/4 cup mini marshmallows

 Layer ingredients in order listed in a pint sized jar or mix all together and store in an airtight container. For serving, place 1/3 cup mix in a mug, add one cup (8 ounces) boiling water. Stir well. Enjoy.
Recipe Source and Printable from
*For adults, you may want to add a little homemade Peppermint Vodka!
Maybe this will get me through another six weeks of winter. Damn Groundhog.
I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday)  (Tuesday) , (Wednesday) , (Thursday)  (Friday) ,  ,

DIY Candy Flavored Vodka

I know, I know. This would have been nice to have posted before Christmas. But…uhm…yeah. Didn’t happen. See previous post for all the pre-Christmas drama. However, even though this was an awesome (if I do say so myself) Christmas gift, it would be an equally awesome Valentine’s gift, birthday gift, etc. For the over 21 crowd of course.

This is SO easy to make, and it doesn’t have to be candy cane…it can be any hard/sugar candy you like. For example, lemon drops are sitting on my counter right now, just waiting.
For Valentine’s Day you might want to use Red Hots for a Cinnamon Vodka, Cherry Sours for a Cherry Vodka, Starlight Mints for Peppermint Vodka…and of course, I’m sure there are still candy canes sitting in a clearance section somewhere!
All you have to do is add about a cup of candy to each pint of vodka. I put mine in mason jars. Because I love mason jars. Give it 2-3 days to dissolve, shaking occasionally, and viola! You’ve made your own flavored vodka.
I just love the color! I can’t wait to try other flavors. I will let you know how they turn out. Also, not only do they make pretty gifts, they taste really good too. I had just a tiny taste, before giving these away, but it tasted so much like a candy cane. The lushes friends I gave them to also gave them a thumbs up. They mixed it with a little Sprite, but you could also use this flavor to make Peppermint White Russians, or add to this Peppermint Hot Chocolate Mix! You can always pin them for next year! #betterlatethannever
I found this gem of an idea over at  and I found the label at . Thank you ladies, and thank you Pinterest!
I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday)  (Tuesday) , ,, (Wednesday) , (Thursday) , (Friday) ,,(Saturday) 

Easy crafts for gift giving

Somehow Christmas Day came and went in a blurrrrr. Wow! I can’t believe it is over! But, I figured I would go ahead and post these little crafts/ideas anyway. Just a couple of projects we had going on…

Scarf with ribbon
A couple of gifts my 10 y/o gave to her besties. All you need is a scarf (great deals can be found at Old Navy and Wal-Mart), then embellish them with your choice of ribbon. I sewed mine, but you could probably use the iron on adhesive too. I don’t know how well that would hold up with washing, etc. I’m not much of a seamstress, so I don’t know how well mine will hold up either! However, I thought the end result was pretty cute. (zebra print is still the thang with my girls.)
Candy Sleighs
My girls made these candy sleighs for some friends and teachers. Forgive the horrible photos, the lighting is terrible in my house at night, and these were taken with my cell phone. Always in a hurry around here!
My girls used the hot glue gun to hold them together, and no, my daughter does not have a tattoo. Why does she insist on writing on herself?!
We also tied some red curling ribbon around each one, but I didn’t get a picture of that. I think these turned out really cute! All you need is 2 candy canes for the bottom, a Kit Kat bar, some Hershey’s miniatures, and we used Hershey’s Peppermint Bark Bells for the top. Who doesn’t like a little chocolate for Christmas?!
Now, could someone send over some cleaning elves? My house is a wreck!
I hope you and yours are enjoying great family time and have a Happy New Year!
Time to think about NYEve appies!

Easy Gifts in Jars {No Baking Required!}

OHMIGAHHH y’allllll…’s Christmas time! I mean, like, it’s HERE. As I say every year, I’m not ready/It’s come too fast/I still have so much to do/I want to do more baking…yada yada yada. Well, I can freak out but it’s not going to change anything. Things have been really crazy these last couple of months (or ‘totes cray‘ if you will…) I haven’t talked about it on the blog because…well, I don’t know why. I just haven’t. I go through phases of wanting the blog to be more anonymous to wanting to share everything. It’s kinda weird putting all your business on the internet, but on the other hand, I’ve gotten a lot of inspiration and encouragement from other people’s business on the internet!

**Skip the following paragraph if you don’t want to hear my life story**
The short version is that my oldest child was diagnosed with , and has been in a back brace for the last month. Being that she is only 12, I was freaked out, as any mother would be. Plus seeing your children in severe pain is horrible. Thankfully the pain was short term (so far). I advise anyone with very active children to look this injury up and be aware of the symptoms b/c I was not at all aware that she was at risk. I’ve had my own share of health issues as well, and finally took my procrastinating self to the doctor. I am a nurse, and I knew something wasn’t right, but I guess it’s human nature to put bad news off as long as possible! Thankfully, it wasn’t that bad and there is an easy fix. My thyroid is out of whack, hypothyroidism, and it is amazing how many body systems your thyroid affects. So, all my life drama in a paragraph. Don’t get me wrong, I feel blessed beyond measure because I KNOW how much worse things could be and I feel so very fortunate. However, these little hiccups in life will derail your “normal” routine. Hence, very slack in the blogging department!
**pick up here for Easy Gifts in Jars**  

As much as I love to bake, especially during the holidays, sometimes (most of the time) TIME is an issue. That is probably one of the reasons I like mixes so much! Plus the fact I love the sweet and crunchy combo.
This one is super easy, and loaded with chocolate. My favorite combo of all! Just mix everything you see in a large bowl (add anything you like!)
Once it’s mixed, you can either sit it out for a party or for everyone to grab a handful as they walk by (which my kids did frequently!) or you can package it up in some little jars to give away.
Some of you may recognize those jars…yep, recycled Biscoff jars!! My local stores have only just recently started carrying Biscoff in plastic jars, so I have many glass jars that I’ve saved and use for storage. Or gift giving! Just slap a label on top and you are good to go.

Chocolate Lover’s Chex Mix

2 Bags Chex Mix (Dark or desired flavor)
1 cup Vanilla Chex Cereal
1 cup Chocolate Chex Cereal
1 small bag of Kit Kat miniatures (chopped in half)
1 cup semi sweet M and M’s
1 cup Gingerbread M and M’s
Mix everything in a bowl. Done!
I think a nice touch would be to spread the mix out on cookie sheets and drizzle with white chocolate. Once it cools, then add to jars. I plan on doing that with the 2 jars I have left. 
The great thing about this is that it is easily tailored to whatever you have on hand, or what you or the person getting the gift likes. I am thinking a good variation would be to add pretzel M&M’s and pretzels to the mix for some sweet and salty action. Or mini peanut butter cups and peanuts would be delish. The options are pretty much endless.
Last year, I made these-
Little jars from the dollar store, and I painted the tops with chalkboard paint. I added some ‘Christmas Crunch’ aka White Trash Mix to the jars. (Another easy, no bake mix!)
This year, for my son’s teacher gifts, I found these cute jars at Wal-Mart. They have a snowman and a snowflake on them. I filled them with peppermint sticks, marshmallows and homemade hot chocolate mix, along with some Hershey’s Hugs and Kisses. I can’t believe this is the only picture I took! I’ll try to get the hot chocolate mix posted soon b/c it was very good.
Just a few last minute, quick and easy gift ideas!

White Chocolate, Chocolate Chip, Walnut Cookies

I’ve been sitting here trying to come up with a name for these cookies…something short, but encompasses all the yumminess they contain. I failed. So, I guess I’ll just show them to you.

I love cookies. And I really love chocolate chip cookies.  I like this cookie recipe because it makes a nice fat cookie, that is soft but firm, and crisp yet chewy. Know what I mean? No? Wellll, make them and you will see what I mean!
These were some of the cookies we included in the teacher gifts I posted the other day.

White Chocolate, Chocolate Chip, Walnut Cookies

1/2 cup (1 stick) softened butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1-1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts
  • Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • In a bowl, beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy
  • Mix in egg, then flour and baking soda.
  • Stir in white and semi sweet chocolate chips, and nuts.
  • Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of dough (approx 1-1/2 inch balls), about 2 inches apart, onto greased cookie sheets or silicone mats.
  • Bake 13-15 minutes, or until lightly browned.
  • Cool 2-3 minutes on cookie sheets before transferring to wire racks to cool thoroughly.
These are A+ material in my book 🙂
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And they were chosen as a Host Favorite over at !!