Sunday, December 4, 2011

The hustle and bustle of December

December is always a busy month of party's, gift-getting, decorating, etc.  To add in the excitement, it is my husband's birthday on December 8th!  This year, he turns the big 3-0!!!!!!!!  To celebrate we are headed to Hawaii for a week and leaving this Wednesday the 7th!  We are so very excited!!  I told the hubs yesterday that it kind of feels like we're going on a 2nd honeymoon.

Here we are on our honeymoon in Jamaica in June of 2009...

Oh those youngins'   ;)
And in just a few short days we will be here....

Oahu, Hawaii

I am very much looking forward to some R&R with my hubby for a week.  We are going to rent a car so that we can explore the island.  We are also going to go to a real Luau one night....perhaps go to the Dole Pineapple Plantation, Pearl Harbor, etc.  I will report on everything when we get back!  :)

As on the cooking front....honestly, I haven't been doing it as much as I'd like.  I made this wonderful crock pot BBQ chicken on was perfect coming home to this after a long week.  Yesterday I made this crock pot apple crisp and it was good...not my most favorite apple crisp ever, but it was super easy and with a large scoop of vanilla icecream, it did the trick!  I love warm desserts in winter!  

I also made these brownies this past week...they were gone in just a few days.  So yummy, moist and the perfect cure for my sweet tooth!


  • 4 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Two large handfuls of chocolate chips
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8 x 8 inch baking pan. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the canola oil, sugar, puree, egg, and vanilla extract.
  3. In another bowl, combine the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until well combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 25 minutes. Final texture is very dense, moist, and fudge-y.

The hubs and I have had a great weekend of cleaning the house, getting the house decorated for Christmas, getting ready for our trip and relaxing.

Last night we met friends for Indian food...YUM (our favorite)!  And then we all came back to our house to watch the big football game VT vs. Clemson and ate the apple crisp.  Clemson won...horray ACC Champs...they are now headed to the Orange Bowl!!!!!

This evening I will be going with my Mom to help out the homeless for 4 hours.  This is always a very humbling and eye opening experience.  I don't know why I only do this once a year...should do it way more often.  I am so so SO blessed to have all that I have.  God is good and I am oh so very grateful.

*Today is a special day because it is my nephew's 4th birthday!  Happy Birthday, Peter!!!!  We love you!  We celebrated Peter and my husband's birthdays while we were in Raleigh for was a very fun time.

I hope that you enjoy this holiday season!  I will be back soon to report on our trip.

A hui hou

 (Hawaiian meaning, "Good-bye, until we meet again")


  1. Great pictures Laura! You did a fabulous job! Hope you take tons and tons of pictures in Hawaii! So excited for you guys, you're going to have so much fun! You'll have to tell us all about it over some boba tea when you get back. :)

  2. Have so much fun in Hawaii! I am jealous...never been!!! I will have to live vicariously through your blog and pictures! Happy Birthday to that special husband of yours!!