September 18, 2013

apple fritter overnight french toast

Okay, this was totally worth resurrecting the blog.

I made an egg nog version of this for Christmas morning last year and thought it was really good but not great. This apple fritter bread just takes this to a whole new level and we are officially hooked. The best thing is that it only takes about 10 minutes to throw together then you wake and bake.  


Apple Fritter Overnight French Toast 

1 loaf Archer Farms Apple Fritter bread (found by the produce)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2 tbsp corn syrup
1 cup milk
1 cup vanilla creamer (or half & half)
2 tsp cinnamon
8 eggs


melt the butter, corn syrup and brown sugar on medium high heat until it is liquid and begins to boil


pour the syrup mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 pan and layer bread, kind of laying it down and pushing it into the syrup


mix the eggs, milk, creamer, and cinnamon together in a bowl and pour over the layered bread 

NOW, cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate overnight


preheat oven to 325 degrees, bake covered french toast for 35 minutes; then uncover and bake for 10 minutes at 375

there is no need for syrup - can you see it there at the bottom? it's amazing!

this turns out somewhat like a bread pudding more than french toast but it is absolutely wonderful. try not to get addicted like we have. 

December 28, 2012

merry and bright

This has by far been the best Christmas ever. I think we have a certain little two year old to thank for that. She is such a blessing! Xmas family2

There was Cookies and Milk with Santa - minus the pic with Santa. She would NOT go anywhere near him. IMG 9010

She loved all of the games though. 

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There have been lots of days staying in pajamas and embracing the bed head. 

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And lots of Ho-Hos.

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There was a trip to the Enchanted Forest. 

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There were some theme-decorated trees and a gingerbread "house" competition. 

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There was some crafty time. We made a Santa face with cotton balls and a Christmas tree. She sang "Oh, Christmas tree" over and over again. 

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There was a fun and chilly trip to Zoo Lights.

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Still no luck with Santa pictures - but at least she talked to him.

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There was a night of our own gingerbread house decorating. It was a lot of fun and will definitely be a yearly tradition from now on. Can you guess which house is Chloe's?

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There was Christmas Eve baking during nap time. Just me alone in the kitchen with the music and whirring of Bessie. It has been a long time since I have been able to do that and I really loved it. 

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Then, I had a sweet little elf come help me make the peppermint cream cheese frosting. Yum!

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She may have gotten her hand stuck when sneaking another sample. Don't worry it wasn't spinning. :)

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She pulled these letters off the fridge and threw them on the counter. The v and second e were turned over. I was pretty shocked when i turned them over to find she had gotten the letters to spell eve on the biggest eve of the year! And they are red and green. Crazy coincidence. 

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We enjoyed a fun spread of finger foods and maybe some scallops because we love them so much! 

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We ate off fancy plates and used the fancy glasses while watching Elf in the living room. 

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Then it was time for family presents! Probably Chloe's favorite part. 

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Oh, and I can't forget Jacob's favorite - Red Velvet Cake with Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting. So good!

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This was our first "real" Christmas morning with Chloe. Last year, we were out of town and she was still too young to really know what was going on. *Yes, her pajamas are on inside out. She likes to strip in the night!*

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The baby and bed were the big hit. She hasn't stopped playing with them. Best $13 I have ever spent. 

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She wanted nothing to do with the tricycle. 

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Hamlet wasn't sure about all of the new stuff. 

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Christmas morning breakfast was Overnight Egg Nog French Toast (so easy and good!) on fancy plates and orange juice in fancy glasses. These were my families when we were younger. It felt good to pull in some old things to celebrate and remember my family. 

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It was a fabulous weekend full of family time. It was really nice to have a low key time at home enjoying one another. We spent the rest of the day with Jacob's family and we are having their family Christmas on New Year's. So, all of the celebrating isn't quite over. Here's to (truly) the most wonderful time of the year!

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June 6, 2012

dinner do's and don'ts

Eating at the table with a 17 month old poses quite a challenge most evenings. First, it was pray through the screaming. Then, it was "Don't throw your food." After that we moved on to "Put your food back on your plate" or "You eat it, don't give it to the dog." 

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But our latest challenge is new and a quick, stern redirection doesn't work AT ALL. We've been in Daycare Food Detox over the past couple of weeks and Chloe doesn't want her tongue to touch anything green right now. How do you handle that?

Dinnertime spinach

What happened? This girl used to gobble up broccoli, scarf down green beans, and even savor spinach! Now, it's all I can do to get her interested in anything other than carbs and carb sprinkled protein. Argh! 

But tonight, we had a breakthrough. Eggplant parmesan. Made from what we grew in our backyard. She was begging with her sweet little "Moh" after each bite. She seriously couldn't get enough of it until I broke out the grapes. 

Next time, I'll just slip some spinach in between slices of crispy eggplant and she won't even know what hit her.

I'm calling it a win! Beat that Chef Boy R Who with your hidden vegetables. Take that V-ate what! 

Mom - 1, Chloe - 267,413

May 29, 2012


I've been out of school for a week now, but if you know me or read my Facebook status then you may know why i couldn't let loose and really enjoy my time off. So, without further delay…..

Schools out

We are off to the zoo this morning. Do you have any big plans this summer?

May 15, 2012

farmergirl wannabe

My computer doesn't like that word…farmergirl. But it's sort of my goal/dream for this summer.

I remember the summer I was eight years old. My sister and I spent a few weeks at my great-grandmother's farm in South Georgia (Jaw-jah). It was a neat experience and I am glad we have the memories. It was just the two of us, hanging out with my grandfather everyday and doing what we could to "help" my great-grandmother. I remember her most at the big white sink with sideboards looking out into the chicken pin.

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It seemed like she was eternally working at that sink and in that kitchen. Every day, every meal was a smorgasbord of the best country cooking anyone could hope for. And what did I eat? Biscuits and honey. I couldn't get enough. Yum!

That summer I saw my great-grandmother, well into her 80's at that point, fling a chicken to kill. I watched her spend all day plucking and prepping that chicken in the back porch off the kitchen.

My grandfather would take my sister and I out on the tractor. It was blue and white. We would ride perched upon the wheel covers (gasp) and occasionally get to steer.

I remember sleeping in the squeaky, old iron bed laden with hand-stitched quilts and washing my face in the ancient pedestal sink with a little rubber stopper.

We traipsed around the farm checking corn, feeding the horses, and picking wild blackberries. Mostly, I remember the blackberries. I didn't like blackberries but I didn't mind picking them.

That's the kind of summer I want to have. Unglamorous work swirled with a heaping dose of carefree relaxation and homemade food.

Now, only 3 more days until I get to find a way to channel that mentality in the middle of the city with a 17 month old.

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What are your summer plans?

May 13, 2012

shiny shoes and the best card ever

How was your Mother's Day? Mine was pretty good. 

It started off with me giving Jacob grief about not saying Happy Mother's Day. (I can be a jerk in the morning!) Then, I helped keep the nursery during worship service. Chloe loved clinging to me almost the entire time. It didn't really bother me that much though. An absolutely thought-provoking Bible class followed. 

After church Jacob surprised me with some new shiney shoes. They are my first pair and I like 'em. So comfortable. 

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We ate lunch with Jacob's family and enjoyed spending the afternoon with them. His mother and grandmother are among the sweetest souls on earth! 

After Chloe woke up from her nap, Jacob surprised me with his very own homemade Mother's Day card. He even hand wrote the poem on the inside. 


In case you can't read it, it says:

"What a great mom you are Candace.

Chloe and I are lost without you to bond us.

Such a beautiful girl with a sweet spirit.

Chloe told me that, I know she means it. 

Sometimes overwhelmed and a little crazy

Normally my fault when I get a little lazy.

Cleaning, teaching and cooking on the oven

All these action show how much you loven.

Chloe and I love you, we know you are the best

Maybe this summer you can get some rest.

Happy Mother's Day, we are stuck to you like glue.

We're ok with that because we love you. "


Isn't that so stinkin' cute and hilarious? I think it is the best Mother's Day card ever made! I am so blessed to have both Jacob and Chloe and cannot imagine my life without them. I think that is what Mother's day is all about - remembering why being a mother is so important. It's because you are loved and get to give love in return! 

These two make me so happy and make me want to love more!


Happy Mother's Day to you!

May 1, 2012


this is my new favorite picture.

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my girl loves dirt. as we planted our garden about a month ago, she was right there with us each step of the way. we let her stay busy putting loose dirt in a small pot and then dumping it back in the large pot. little did we know, we were creating a bad habit. now, we cannot walk by a patch of dirt without Chloe lunging for the soil with both hands ready to be filled. 

case in point, we went to the doctor a week or so ago. Chloe was doing really well in the waiting room but soon got restless, so we walked outside. She did great walking up and down the sidewalk chasing me until she saw what lined the flowerbed - mulch. She was a goner after I wouldn't let her dig into her treasured dirt and take a sample to her doctor. 

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oh, and when we pick her up from "school" - which i call school because it makes me feel better - she has a diaper full of pea gravel that came from the playground. it pours out of her pants when we pick her up and she screams as we rid her of the tiny rocks she has been hoarding. 

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dirt. it makes her happy. 

silly little girl. she makes me happy.