Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Starbucks Lemon Pound Cake

Good morning...eeeerrrrr afternoon :/ I have been watching the Olympics like crazy so losing track of time :)
I love the Summer Olympics! Makes me want to get out and run, swim, kayak in a river, etc. BUUUTTTT instead I have found the perfect recipe for lemon pound cake! 

So I have an obsession with Starbucks (as most people do) and I just love a Chai Tea Latte with a piece of their Lemon Pound Cake with Lemon Icing... agggggghhhh so good!

So I started making my own Lemon Pound Cake AND it tastes JUST LIKE the Starbucks!!!
Now I don't know Starbucks' recipe so I'm not claiming THIS IS or anything... just very similar :))

Here is my recipe below... ENJOY!

Lemon Pound Cake w/ Icing

Pound Cake
2 Cups Flour
2 Cups Sugar
2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon of Vanilla flavoring
1 teaspoon of Lemon flavoring
5 Eggs

Step 1: Mix all ingredients together.

Step 2: Spoon into greased bundt pan (or you could do two bread pans)

Step 3: Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour


Just mix powdered sugar with small about of milk. Add vanilla and lemon flavoring to taste.

Friday, July 27, 2012

something I never thought would happen...

There honestly is a FIRST time for everything... who wouldn't agree? Well a few days ago I made a peanut butter shortbread cookie. I thought it was REALLY good because I do enjoy shortbread cookies and then mix that with peanut butter...well you have got yourself a treat!
Joey didn't like it. NOPE. Not one bit. I thought he was joking at first so I just laughed and said 'yeah right'. However after he did not touch it again after that and said he REALLY didn't like it a few more times, I got the hint.
This is what I had left over after I ate it all :/ But it is like a wedge shortbread cookie.

I liked it... so I figured I would share the recipe with y'all and have you give it a whirl. Let me know if you like it too or if you side with Joey :)))

Peanut Butter Shortbreads

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 creamy peanut putter
2 cups all-purpose flour
Step 1: Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Step 2: Combine all ingredients with fingers in medium bowl until mixture resembles coarse meal. (What?!?! just mix it untill it's all crumbly)
Step 3: Press into ungreased 8-inch round baking pan. Prick decorative wedges in dough with fork.
Step 4: Bake about 1 hour or until very lightly browned. Cut into wedges while warm.
Makes 16 wedge-shaped cookies

***This is not my recipe. I made this from my Favorite Brand Name Best-Loved Entertaining Cook Book. They said that this recipe was favorited by the Peanut Advisory Board.***

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Busy Summer and Conditioner Trials!

So this month has been a crazy month! Last week I got home from Mississippi for our engagement party :) We had so much fun! It was so great to meet some of the people Joey grew up with, more of his (soon to be mine as well) family, and  shove our faces full of food that I will NEVER be able to cook. I have to say that while I enjoy cooking and baking, and THINK that I'm decent enough to serve it people... I will never be as good as Joey's mom! Maybe nope... not even maybe.

We also picked up our NEW car! Well new to us... it is not a brand new car but I'm excited because I have always wanted a BMW :))  I took some pictures but OF COURSE can't find them on my phone soooo like any "good" social media user, I took screen shots of my Instagram pictures (clever...I know)
P.S. Y'all need to follow me on Instagram! I'm obsessed with it :) @youngnasawife hhheeeyyyyyy!

Soooo, as I mentioned,or maybe didn't. I have been busy trying to get everything under control here so I have not been blogging that much. *Tear*
BUT I am on a conditioner quest! (yeaaaa I know.. I'm always on a quest...kinda feel like Don Q)
I have been trying to find a good conditioner for my hair that is very natural. No Sulfates. No Parabens.
I have gotten the question from some people... 'why don't you just use the matching conditioner to your shampoo?'
GREAT question! I'll tell you why. The shampoo that I use (as I have said many times over) is called Pureology and is expensive. Not outrageous but let's be honest here $40 for a not-so-big bottle... yeeeeaaa expensive. So I buy that shampoo because my hair loves it AND because the shampoo last 3X as long as conditioner does for me. I don't shampoo my hair everyday. I usually go every 3 days. However, I DO use conditioner everyday, plus I have thick hair, plus curly hair, AND PLUS my hair naturally snarls. Soooo therefore I go through conditioner that much faster, and I just can't justify spending that much on a conditioner when I fly through the bottle in a week.
There are so many great alternatives out there.

I told you about the Giovanni conditioner I used before so I won't go into crazy detail.
I liked it. Very silky feeling! All natural which is what I was looking for buuuuttt I had to use like 5 squirts of it for my hair. Something about the formula and my hair didn't take well. I used this bottle really fast and I didn't see AMAZING results to buy it again. I was on to try something else.
Giovanni Hair Care - Conditioner Smooth As Silk, 8.5 fl oz liquid

So the next conditioner that I have been using (and I'm still finishing this up) is the Organix Brazilian Keratin Therapy Conditioner.
This has, as you can see read in the picture, coconut oil, keratin proteins, avocado oil, and cocoa butter. All good stuff! The smell is basically coconut to me, but I don't notice it when I get out of the shower :( Doesn't have a long lasting scent. Which if it does the job I won't complain but the scent is nice to have. I bought this because it really emphasized the keratin proteins smoothing and strengthening curly or wavy hair. It did an O.K. job. I really wish I LOVED this conditioner because it has everything going for it... all natural, the packaging is Eco-friendly and recycled (even the labels are made from renewable resource corn, not petrochemicals) AND made in the USA! I might buy this again, but I still want to keep trying some other products.
Organix Ever Straight Brazilian Keratin Therapy Defrizzant Conditioner, 13 Ounce

So the final conditioner that I bought just yesterday (because I'm almost out of the one above) is Simply U.
I have NEVER heard of this brand before, but it caught my eye in the drugstore because it had one of those tags around the neck of the bottle that advertised NO SULFATES and NO PARABENS.
Had to look! It has no sulfates or parabens and has vitamins and antioxidents in it.
The packaging is simple but it is a really GOOD size. 25 oz and the cost was about $6. Compared to the Organix which is about $7 for 13 oz.
I have only used it a few times so I can't say "much" about it... ONLY that I LOVE LOVE LOVE the smell!
It has that floral/citrus smell to it, which is my favorite scent for the summer time.
SIMPLY U Website

Do y'all have any recommendations for good natural conditioners? I would love to hear what you use!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Summer Makeup Must-Haves :)

Happy Monday! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend. I have been getting ready for our trip this week so this blog post is up a little later than I wanted.

As summer is here, and in full force, many people across the country are experiencing the heat and summer conditions; so I wanted to share some of my summer makeup must haves! Now I have included some dupes that I have or alternatives in my collection to some of the pricey items.

So first thing on my list is foundation. Yes I know...foundation is an all year round thing...BUT having a foundation that is a bit darker for the summer time from being out at the pool or beach is a MUST HAVE.
So the L'Oreal foundation is my everyday, usually year round foundation...but I have been at the pool lately and gotten just a tad more color on my face. I can get away with the L'Oreal foundation, but I have found a better match in the Maybelline FIT me foundation.  This I have in my collection for when I'm a bit darker :)

Second summer must-have is eye primer! With the heat and humidity during the summer makeup can have a hard time staying put on your face, especially your eye makeup. Summer elements just tend to wear at it! SOOO use a primer. This will help your eyeshadow stay longer and keep from creasing from sweat or humidity.
I really like the Too Faced shadow insurance but it is about $20. If you don't normally use primer and really only need it for the summer months then I recommend the e.l.f primer. I have the stick form that came with the dual sided seal. This works as a pretty good base. 

Third summer must have is bronzer. Yes, yes, yes! We are all outside getting some color so why not own it and have a bronzer that will accent that :)  I have found the best matte bronzer. I prefer matte bronzers because they are the best for contouring the face AND don't have all that shimmer (I get the shimmer from my highlight).
NYC's  Smooth Skin Bronzing Face Powder is BY FAR the best MATTE Bronzer I have ever used! That is saying a ton! This is in the color Sunny. For the price this little guy gets the work done!

Fourth summer must-have, a setting powder. This will help your foundation and concealer stay put during the heat and humidity.
The MAC Skinfinish Natural is my favorite. There are many setting powders that will work.

Fifth is a nourishing lip balm.
One of my favorites!

And finally, for fun... some colorful eyeshadow to play with!

Keep enjoying your summer and stay cool!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

July 4th Goodness!

Good Morning America! I hope everyone had a great July 4th and that you were able to have some great food with family/friends celebrating America's birthday!
I had an amazing July 4th with my fiance! He had off yesterday like many people and we did a lot of work in the beginning of the day until finally Joey asked what we were doing.
I had no idea what to do for the 4th... I had bought some hot dogs to grill up and I figured that would be the extent of our celebration. BUUUUTTT Joey had other plans and an idea; a baseball game-the American past time :) (errrrr however they say that)
I was soooo excited, I have not been to a baseball game in years! We decided to head over a bit early and purchase tickets because we knew the crowd would be heavy at tonight's game. Mainly due to the fireworks that follow the game.
On the way over it was pouring down rain! Thunder and lightning storms were right over us :(  We got the tickets and ran some errands before the game time at 6:35pm.
We arrived at the stadium at 5:30 and all the cars were starting to file in...this was going to be a packed game.
What is really cool about the minor league team we were seeing the Brevard County Manatees, is that their team colors are red, white, and blue! ;)
So here were some pictures from the game! It turned out to be a great, clear night!
We got our photo taken! Now I just need to go stalk and find it on the website :)

God Bless the U.S.A!!! :)

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Baking for the Fall on a Summer Day!

Hellooo! I hope everyone is enjoying their holiday week! I can't wait for tomorrow when Joey is off from work. We have a few business things to do and then hopefully we will be enjoying the sun, good food, and fireworks! Normally back home today, July 3rd, is typically the day when we would celebrate the 4th of July! We did a ring of fire around our lake and everyone comes to see fireworks, families are enjoying picnic dinners at a local park, and it is so nice to see everyone out and about!

So yesterday I took a break from working to bake one of my favorite Fall desserts! I know it's not Fall but I'm ready for the Fall season and what better way to get in the Fall mood :) I thought I would share this great recipe with you and hope that you enjoy it.
*This recipe is not mine, I will cite the book the recipe came from at the bottom*

Pumpkin Pie Bars

1 and 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided
1 cup finely chopped nuts (this is optional I usually leave them out)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided
3/4 cup (1 and 1/2 sticks) butter or margarine
1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 Eggs, beaten
1/2 teaspoon ground all spcie
1/4 teaspoon salt

Step 1: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In medium bowl, combine 1 and 1/2 cups flour, nuts (if you are using), granulated sugar, brown sugar, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Add butter; mix until crumbly. Reserve 1 and 1/4 cups flour mixture. Pat remaining mixture on bottom of ungreased 13x9-inch baking pan.

Step 2: In large bowl, combine pumpkin, Eagle Brand, eggs, remaining 1 teaspoon cinnamon, allspice, and salt; mix well. Pour evenly over crust.

Step 3: Mix reserved flour mixture with remaining 1 tablespoon flour. Sprinke over pumpkin mixture. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until set. Cool about 10 minutes. Serve warm. Store leftovers covered in refrigerator.

Makes about 2 dozen bars.

Recipe Book: Favorite Brand Name Best-Loved Entertaining; Debbie Mumm