Monday, September 30, 2013

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes {Lowfat/Low Calorie}

As we're vastly approaching Halloween and pumpkin season and being fall and all, I've been craving my Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes.  Someone I worked with a few years ago told me this recipe and even though I was a bit skeptical and hesitant at first, I gave it a shot and Holy YUM.

List of Ingredients:
1 Can of Pumpkin
1/4 Cup Water
1 Box Spice Cake Mix

Now here, I used my own pureed pumpkin from a few years ago.  Being freshly pureed, I omitted the water since it is a bit runnier than the canned pumpkin is.  I used 2 cups pumpkin puree because that's about 16 oz which is like a can of pumpkin.

Add the cake mix to your Pumpkin and stir together.

I made cupcakes.  The cake mix said to preheat the oven to 350 degrees so that's what I did.

Make sure your batter is completely mixed.  As you can see I had a few lumps still...

Then place in the cupcake liners.  I saw on Food Network they said to use a big ice cream scoop to get uniform sized cupcakes.  Works like a charm.  In fact, that's the reason I bought this ice cream scoop.  Silly I know :).

Bake like the package says.  The package I use said to bake 18-20 minutes.  18 was the lucky number.

Now, not having the eggs, they don't quite rise like a regular cupcake would, but heck, who cares :)  They're delicious!

I topped mine with Light Coolwhip to keep down on the calories that you might get from a traditional icing.

For a little extra some thin some thin I grated Nutmeg on the top.

Then I loaded them up to take to Sunday Night Dinner.  That way I got to eat my cupcakes and share so I didn't have to eat them all :)

Oh, and someone needed to worry about clean up :)  It's a tough job but someone has to do it.

I've been telling Jill about these and then they got stuck in my head.  Holy YUM!  Thanks Jill for going on your pumpkin quest so I could tell you this recipe and then not stop until I made them for myself!

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Saturday, September 28, 2013

The Saturday Post {16}

Top 5 Posts of the Week
1.  Same ol' Same ol'

2. Stuffed Jalapeno {with Cream Cheese, Bacon & Cheddar} Stuffed Chicken Breast

3. 10 Things to Smile About - September

4. Ride for Life {part 1}

5. Ride for Life

This Weeks Posts
Ride for Life {part 1}
Ride for Life
10 Things to Smile About - September
Same ol' Same ol'

Blast from the Past
2012 - How to Create a Watermark Brush in PSE
2011 - How Do You Spend Your Tuesday's?,
           Chapter 3 Nutrition Test - Wanna Study with Me?
2010 - Chicago - Monday - Part 1

Recipes made from the Blog this Week
**Nada, all new**

Instagram Lately

Week's Happenings
++We participated in the Ride for Life
++Baled Hay
++We finished reading the Faerie Queene, now starting Titus Andronicus
++I had my first HEL (History of the English Language) test
++I went shopping at Target.  Exciting, right?
++Is it sad I'm excited for the Christmas season?

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Thursday, September 26, 2013

Same ol' Same ol'

  September 25, 2013

Friday Nights: 
We haven't had a normal Friday night in ages!

Hair Style:
I typically wear it down and straight or up in a ponytail.  
Every now and again I curl it with my Chi.  
I have long bangs that are growing into the rest of my hair and I'm in desperate need of a haircut.  
Sadly my roots are growing out again and need to be fixed, so right now I have the whole Ombre look that was (maybe still is?) quite popular but it really wasn't intentional on my part! 
Favorite place to dine out:
Oh heck, I don't know...

Favorite Outfit: 
Sadly I've gained weight and seems most of my clothes don't fit anymore.

Love Life:
Our marriage is strong.
Life is too short to argue all the time.
Remember, The first part is exciting, the second part is where the real depth comes in!

Home Life: 
Our life is taking a different turn than we thought it would three years ago when we got married.  
Our dogs still LOVE to litter our yard with their latest finds so we aren't ever quite sure what we'll find.

TV shows: 
 The Pioneer Woman's cooking show on Food Network
Dancing with the Stars
The Middle
Grey's Anatomy
Friends Reruns
Big Bang Theory

Extra time: 
What extra time?
I got myself a blogging gig for our local dive shop, until they don't like my posts I guess :). 
I still love to cook but sometimes feel like I have NO time.

What excites me: 
 *Playing with my camera 
*Spending time with my husband
*Riding horses
*Tbug cooking with me

A moment I never want to forget:  
*Just spending time with my family
*Scuba Diving
*Making new friends
*Going back to school and feeling really dumb
*My Morelli Dog, we lost him a few weeks ago :(

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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

10 Things to Smile About - September

So technically Emmy's 10 things to smile about for the month was yesterday, but, well, when have I been on time? I was born 2 weeks late and I might as well just realize I'll be late for the rest of my life?!?!

So better late than never, right?

1. Hubby and I celebrated our 3rd Anniversary

2. We went on our first Dive Trip since we were certified, Mermet Springs

3. I volunteered for a blogging gig for our local dive shop. Sweet!

4. We got to see Kellie Pickler in concert

5. We participated in the Ride for Life

6. We're about done reading the Fairie Queene, as in Friday and I can't wait!

7. My Sister-in-Law actually came to have dinner with us.
*Stolen from her Facebook*

8. I absolutely LOVE our new bed. I've gotten good night sleeps lately! I don't feel like this pooch anymore!

9./10. Um... I became addicted to Frappuccino's again. Dang it! But I got through one paper. Paper number 2 is due on Thursday/Friday of this week. Yikes! Help!

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Ride for Life

After a kind of long night because Aloha thought it would be fun to paw at the trailer all night (silly horse) we were up and at 'em first thing Saturday morning. Actually we slept fairly decent, except the 4ish times Aloha was making racket so hubby went to check on her. I'm not sure Pete was real happy with that... lol, just kidding. 

Friday night got down around 59 degrees for a low. Being in a valley like we were, that created a gorgeous morning with the fog hanging low. Hubby and Grady went up to get us some breakfast and the dew on the grass was so thick their boots were soaked. We swore mud boots would have been nice at that point.

We were actually with the Missouri Mounted Guard in our group. They were spread throughout the trail of riders to make sure nothing happened and if it did (ie bucked off a horse, etc) they were there to help all the patrons of the ride. They were easily spotted by their yellow.

The ride was to start around 8, or so we thought. Closer to 8:30 they started calling for all campers to move toward the front of the area so we could head out. Our group chose to stay toward the back and bring up the rear.

The purpose for our ride was to raise money for St. Jude Cancer Research. Everyone had different reasons for riding, but we were all riding for the cause at the same time.

Tbug had a party to attend the night before for her half sister so my parents picked her up afterwards, she stayed the night with them and then they brought her down to us Saturday morning because she didn't want to miss this for anything.

Since our group was at the back, we had to wait for everyone else to head out. Sadly there were a few rodeo's but everyone was Okay and that's the main thing!

When we lost Squirty last fall, we're down to 3 horses to ride, one being a stud. Mini Me hasn't been around a whole lot of other horses so we figured it wouldn't be a good idea to try him out this day, so J-rod was able to snag us an extra horse, hubby got to ride the Appaloosa. They got off to a bit of a rough start together, but they survived with only minor bruising on hubby's leg. As hubby says, "Pain Heals, Chicks dig scars and Glory lasts forever," (name that movie).

Tbug was to the back side of me, then we have Hubby, SW, Grady & Deb. There were a few who got behind us so we were waiting on them to catch up so we could close the gate and go grab some grub... aka lunch.

I wanted proof that I was there so here's my shadow, leg and the side of KG. Then hubby snagged the camera from me so that I could "really" be seen.

Annie decided she wanted us to share our BBQ Chips and our Chocolate Chip Cookies with her.

Then they started comparing why 2 of Deb & Grady's horses were different weights... Callie (left) took a bite at a time to eat it while Annie took an entire mouthful and before she was done she was eating another entire plant... lol :). Then Grady thought he'd help the Annie hold on to her grass and she got testy with him. It was hilarious. Have I ever told you how much I LOVE horses?

After lunch we closed up the gap and all headed out again. Our crew was still toward the back but we moved up just a bit.

Some of the beautiful landscape we saw throughout our ride.

This guys shirt says it all!

We rode hard. We wound up riding around 6 hours or so, 14 miles, up and down slopes, through wooded areas, and all of the above. The scenery was gorgeous. The day was fabulous. The cause was good. I can also say that we were tired when it was over and poor KG, the old man, got his workout! :).

Once we got back to camp, Deb started working on the potatoes. We first cooked them in the microwave and then finished them up in the oven and on the grill. We also started green beans to cooking. She and I both had trouble with the can opener so I took them out to hubby for some assistance... hey he enjoyed them to so I let him help... lol.

At 6pm we headed up toward the front to the tent because they were having an auction to help raise money as well.

I saw this sight too. Don't worry, the horse is just laying there on command as I saw the horse moving and saw them lay the other horse down. I think they were just enjoying some resting time :)

As we got to the tent we had to go register for a number and of course see all the loot to auction off.

A couple items were auctioned twice as once the buy got it, they said re-auction it to raise more money. I saw cookies bringing $50-60. A Peach Pie went for $110. The recliner was sold twice. Remember folks, this was for a fabulous cause!

One thing that was pointed out to me, we had to wear the striped bracelets to show we checked in for the ride, but my diver bracelet looked a lot like the ride bracelet. I also have a nice huge white band on my arm now :). Plus I got one from my watch. Poor SW got one from her headband on her head. Shhhh don't tell her that I told you!

After the auction was over, we went back to our camp area and ate steaks. YUM!  Plus green beans, bread, chips, cookies and probably more desserts than you could shake a leg at... lol.

Hubby, Tbug and I headed home Saturday night. By the time we got out of there and got horses dropped off at their respective places, it was around midnight when we got home. I had Tbug jump in the shower first and when I went in to take mine, I was greeted by this cute little note. I know the poor girls thoughts exactly. We were all exhausted and didn't wake up until well after 10 on Sunday morning.

This was a great weekend, for a fabulous cause and we had some excellent company. Once my muscles quit aching I'm ready to go again. I did learn this weekend that I'm not spring chicken anymore... lol.

Oh and dun dun da dun.... the total I heard raised was $15,000.

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