Momma Told Me: April 2013

Blog Archive

Less Words Wednesday: Pigpen Cake + Birthday Berries

kit kat cake
Momma Told Me: Sometimes you've got to roll (with the punches)

For those tracking Jawmaggeddon (how I am referring to my extra tooth extraction), the big surgery was yesterday; thus this early Wednesday post. I hope to be back to my regular reviewing and foodie blogging self tomorrow, or Thursday at the latest. In the mean time my jaw is swollen to the size of a modest Grapefruit and I find myself laughing at the term 'pain maintenance meds.' (What a joke for me) In any case, I thought I'd bring you all up to speed on the calamity of a week we've had in the past 7 days.
It began with my recovery from a rather persistent chest cold. Knowing I'd planned a surprise party for Jay on Saturday (seeing as I was to spend his birthday in oral surgery), I began working on the marzipan characters for his cake. Seen above the 2 pigs swimming in 'mud' with my handcrafted penguin (representative of Jay), amid scattered bowling pins. The cake itself is Devil's Food, while the outer 'pigpen' is made of Dark Chocolate Kit Kats, and the 'mud' comprised of Dark Chocolate Frosting. It was quite rich to say the least.There are various other versions of this concept out there, but I'm fairly pleased with how mine turned out.
On Wednesday of last week there was a bit of monkey business with my bank account. I received an email from PayPal informing me that my Business Mastercard transaction for $903, in North Carolina, did not go through. An hour later a smaller $9 charge posted to my account from a phone authorization to Kmart/Sears. I had been hoping I could avoid canceling the card until my dentist payment came out the following day, but it was clear something had to be done much sooner. Thankfully the people at PayPal are amazing, and much quicker with these circumstances than my physical bank. They were happy to expedite a new card and refund the fraudulent transactions in less than 5 minutes on the phone!
Saturday, the day of the big surprise party, we awoke to discover the power had been out since 4AM. In addition to the lovely background noise of our 'vacation home' neighbor's alarm below us, I was a bit worried about the meticulously crafted cake and refrigerated goods. Southern California Edison remained confident, every 4 hours, the power would be restored in....4 hours. At hour 10, I transferred our fridge contents to my father's house on the way to pick up Jay's mother and brother for the surprise party. As it turned out this was a smart move, for the power did not resume until 17 hours after the initial outage. Luckily the party was a hit, and a genuine surprise. Above you'll see the polymer clay penguin and 'egg' holder Sabrina had made for Jay during Spring break. (There is a fish in his mouth.) Shortly after returning home Jay 'misplaced' his wallet, which has not resurfaced since.
dipped strawberry
On Monday, Jay's actual birthday, I awoke to a notification my oral surgery would be delayed a half hour. It turns out I did not get into surgery until 3 hours after my initial appointment, but it is what it is. In any case, there were some leftover strawberries and graham crackers from our Hobmother trap, so I made him some chocolate dipped berries in lieu of a cake. Outside of surgery I have remained fairly resilient to the aid of any pain management meds, and my antibiotics have kept my appetite away since. I remain confident each hour will prove me feeling better- and let's hope so, because there are lots of wonderful things here I'm excited to share!

What Daughter Says: Despite the bumps along the way, this week, smiles were shared by all.

@Gevalia Molasses Coffee Pork Chops + My #CupOfKaffe Moment

 ***I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias®  and Kraft Foods. Regardless, all opinions are authentic and unaltered. #CupOfKaffe #cbias #SocialFabric

Momma Told Me: Coffee is like a purse; you can put a number of things in it, but at the end of the day, it's still judged for what it is.

For years my coffee moment has been a Gevalia moment. It all started way back in my childhood (my love of coffee, that is). Like most things worth recollecting, the memory of my first sip of coffee was marked by the poignant realization of my sharpest senses. The first, of course, was the sense of smell; marked by the wafting aroma of full bodied Columbian beans, slow roasted to perfection after being freshly ground in my parent's kitchen. Next came touch, the almost too hot, but not quite, stream of steaming deep brunette liquid sliding through my lips and splashing against the developing palette of my tongue. Then my eyes widened as that palette began to explore and dissect this new flavor, 'coffee,' as it was called. And finally, what I consider the sixth sense, Satisfaction- with nothing more than a splash of cream I fell in love with that caffeinated beverage right then and there. I could feel my limbs being to tingle, invigorated, inhaling the flavor in the form of scent, the warmth rushing down my throat and tickling my tummy. What brand that first sip has been, I don't know; but it began a torrid affair that has defined many mornings, afternoons, and nights since.

 In 2009, newly married and gently tapping the box of my prized wedding gift, a state-of-the-art Cuisinart brewer, I wondered where the new world of brewing at home might take me. Up until that point I'd always rented rooms in houses with other college students; counter space int he kitchen had been limited, and so had my coffee drinking habits to expensive coffeehouse stores. Then, one day, by fate perhaps, I decided to click on a little revolving ad on my internet sidebar. The ad had been for a premium coffee brand that specialized in direct-to-your-door monthly delivery of over 40 Gourmet Coffee flavors. Gevalia, as it turns out, was established in 1853 under a simple business design of harvesting the best beans into small batch, handcrafted, blends. The number one brand in Sweden for over 150 years, their commitment to premium beans, and full bodied, never bitter, flavor, is almost regal. It goes without saying that I followed that ad to an unbelievable trial offer of their monthly delivery service and have been sampling the over 40 flavors and roasts throughout the years since.
When single cup brewers began gaining popularity soon after, they failed to appeal to me for the expensive sticker prices, and the minimal brand selection. Why would I want to invest in a pricey brewing system when I was quite content with the variety and flavors of my home delivered Gevalia? (As a side note, if you're wondering what I mean by flavors ponder; Raspberry Danish, Dark Chocolate Truffle, and Pecan Torte) It was something I wrestled with for near 3 years, until my grandmother gifted me a new coffee maker (ironically celebrating my divorce), for Christmas 2 years back. Our Keurig came with a variety pack of over 15 different K-Cups, and we slowly weeded through them. The other half is much less particular about his coffee, and had made a decent dent; but I remained loyal to brewing my Gevalia ground coffee in an eco-friendly single serve cup.

  There is something simple to be said about the rich, never bitter, full bodied flavor of Gevalia. Whether it's one of their Heritage or Passport collection blends, or the classic Columbia roast, Gevalia always tastes smooth on my palette without a drop of added sugar or cream. That's precisely why I quite literally let out a squeal in the coffee aisle of our local Walmart when I saw the classic golden hue nestled atop the single serve, K-Cup, shelf. Gevalia Kaffe single serve cups are now sold at Walmart chains nationwide in 3 uniquely bold blends; Columbia, Dark Royal Roast, and Signature. Featuring 12 single serve K-cups per package, these Gevalia Kaffe boxes seamlessly merge the convenience of my Keurig brewer with the smooth taste and flavor I already love. Unfortunately, it seems I am not the only Gevalia addict excited about this development; I visited 2 local Walmart locations and found only the Columbia in stock (and in minimal stock at that). I had hoped to have a chance to snag some of the new Dark Royal Roast for my homemade Tiramisu, but someone had beat me to the punch! See more of my shopping adventure and Gevalia indulgence in my Google+ album here.
tiramisu recipe
Gevalia Kaffe Tiramisu
**click here for printable recipe.


* 2 C Gevalia Kaffee Brewed Coffee (Dark Royal Preferred)
* 3 OZ Amaretto Liqueur
* 3 Egg Yolks
* 1 3/4 C Whipping Cream, Divided
* 1/2 C Sugar
* 1 3/4 Mascarpone Cheese
* 40 Ladyfinger Biscuits (or 14 individual Angel Food Cakes, sliced 2" thin)
* 2 TBS Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
* 1/4 C Shaved Bittersweet Chocolate


1.) Combine the Gevalia Kaffe and Amaretto liqueur in a shallow baking dish and set aside.

2.) Bring 2" of water to a boil over large heat, in a small saucepan. In a heatproof bowl (that will fit over the saucepan), combine the egg yolks and 1/2 C of whipping cream. Place over the boiling water and whisk continuously until the mixture reaches 160F or coats the back of a spoon (5-6 MINS). Remove from heat and whisk for 3-4 minutes to cool. Set aside and allow to cool completely (10-15 MINS).

3.) In a mixer add the remaining whipping cream, prepared yolk mixture, and sugar; beat until soft peaks begin to form (3-5 MINS). Add the mascarpone and  mix well.

4.) Place 1 layer of ladyfingers in a 9" x13" pan (should fit approx. 6 rows of 3). Next, dip both sides of each ladyfinger quickly into the coffee mixture and place back into the pan. Spread half of the mascarpone mixture over the ladyfingers and sprinkle with half of the cocoa powder. Repeat with another layer.

5.) Cover tight with plastic wrap and refrigerate 6-12 hours. Serve with shaved chocolate sprinkled atop.
gevalia recipe
Molasses Coffee Pork Chops
**click here for printable recipe.


* 1 C Gevalia Kaffe brewed Coffee (Columbia blend prefered)
* 1/2 C Molasses
* 2 TBS Apple Cider Vinegar
* 1 TBS Dijon Mustard
* 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
* 1/2 TSP Ground Ginger
* 4 (6-8 OZ) Bone Out Pork Chops
* Sea Salt and Pepper (to taste)


1.) Combine the coffee, molasses, vinegar, mustard, garlic, pinch of salt and pepper, ginger, and pork chops in a gallon sized, zip-top, bag. Seal and shake well to combine. Marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours, minimum, or overnight.

2.) Preheat the grill to medium-high. Remove the pork from the bag and pour the marinade into a saucepan; boil gently over medium-high heat. Stir constantly until reduced to approx. 1/2 C (12-15 MINS). 

3.) Grill the pork chops until they reach an internal temperature of 145F, flipping every 3-4 minutes. Let rest for 5 MINS and serve with prepared glaze.
cooking with coffee
As you can see, my love for coffee, and my #CupOfKaffe, goes way beyond the occasional mug of afternoon brew. With Gevalia single serve Kafe cups on hand I find myself drinking much more coffee at home (which naturally trims pennies off the spending budget), and experimenting more with coffee infused recipes. Baking with coffee is something I am not a stranger to, as my beloved grandmother first shared her recipe for German Chocolate Sauerkraut Cake, when I was still a child. Most Germans are raised with the knowledge that coffee in baking can be a wonderful flavor additive when taking the place of water, and also increase the general moisture of a baked good. A few months back I recall seeing a dark roast incorporated into a glaze for pork, and was tickled to try this technique in my own home. The result was nothing short of 5-Star Cuisine, with flavor the other half raved about, surely thanks to the smooth, well rounded, flavor of gourmet Gevalia Kaffe. Try Gevalia Kaffe K-Cups today with this easy to print coupon for $1.50 off your next purchase.

What Daughter Says: I am tickled to find one of my favorite brands of coffee now stocked in Kaffe K-Cups at my local Walmart, and look forward to future flavored blends.

My Mom Is The Best Giveaway Hop: DYMO LabelMaker~ 5/7

 Please Note: This giveaway item was provided by Penny Wise Office Products, in addition to a review unit, in exchange for my honest opinion and review. Regardless, all thoughts and images are original, honest, content represented in the fairest manner. This giveaway is part of the Fashionista Events My Mom Is The Best Giveaway Hop, brought to you by Still Blonde After All These Years and Modly Chic.

Momma Told Me: Every thing has a place and every place a thing.

Spring is officially here, and with Spring comes that nagging urge, feeling of obligation, to organize and tidy up for the ongoing year. I wish I could say I observed this habit in Momma, growing up, but she had a knack for keeping my little hands busy with a duster or filing cabinet, no matter the season. Personally, I never minded much; I found organization to be particularly fulfilling and therapeutic. Whenever Pop would receive a parts order for work (his job title requiring him to tinker and repair a variety of commercial appliances), I would willing offer my time to meticulously check off each and every item received. Sometimes these were giant rotors, others they were hundreds of individually packed O-rings of varying sizes. Yes, everything had a place in our home, and I found comfort in singular truth. Unfortunately this is not so much true in my own household today. I wish I could be as much of a Wonder Woman as Momma, but alas my 2 bedroom condo seems overrun with piles and projects I hope to attend to 'someday.'
LabelManager 280
There's the old adage about offending a wife/mother by gifting her a practical item for Mother's Day. The way I see it, it's not in the type of item, but the quality received. For example, receiving an old model Hoover with a tedious turning point, excessive hoses, and clogging brush head (in my humble opinion), as opposed to a beautiful yellow workhorse like the latest Dyson. When you gift a woman a practical, or utilitarian, object for any special holiday it's always best to first most consider if the object will instantly make her life easier, through innovative design and intuitive use. If the answer is yes, then this item along with a simple bouquet of flowers will likely be the key to a tickled Momma. I know whenever Jay makes any form of gift purchases for me I am also always looking at the bottom line. I usually have a good idea how much was spent; and since our money is ultimately combined, savvy buying decisions (even in gifting) are essential. That is why we love to shop the Penny Wise Office Products catalog. Not only is this a beautiful full color catalog of every home and work office need, but a great way to get a heads up and the latest innovations and take advantage of FREE Shipping.
Call it the 'Type A' in me, but I have longed for a simple, yet proficient label-maker ever since I  heard the gentle click of my Pop's device, back in my tweens. For me, high school was categorized by a high level of obsessive organization; intended to mange the several addictions, collections, I carefully curated. I recall the teachers in school often had label makers too, and there was something simply exciting about bring able to 'slap a label' on something. Penny Wise recently sent me a DYMO LabelManager 280 for a feature here on Momma Told Me, and it couldn't have been a better selection for my basic needs. While many label makers can be found in the Penny Wise Office catalog, I love this particular model best for it's versatility in charging options (included AC adapter, or PC/MAC charging cable). I also love that there are 3 simple steps to set up; insert the battery, insert the label cartridge, and connect to the computer to charge and update necessary drivers.
Penny Wise Office
The DYMO LabelManager is incredibly easy to use; while it's true some may want the fuss and frills of smiley emotes and multi-ink cartridges, I use mine to label, and label alone. The physical size of the unit is a little bigger than I'd anticipated, though the device is fairly lightweight, and still handles well with one hand. The front face features a flat screen with hidden buttons beneath printed icons and symbols. The bottom half of the screen is a raised button keyboard with fairly large letters (easy to read), and operates much like a classic cellphone text pad. When the unit is turned on the main screen displays a plain black and grey LCD prompt which features a charge indicator, USB connectivity, font size, and additional options tabs. Out of the box the LabelManager will function immediately for basic font labels with common punctuation (including accents and numbers). The software can be added to through a PC connection to include additional fonts and even smiley symbols. If this is desired I suggest navigating the label maker through the included on (computer) screen program window.
label maker
I'll admit, my computer (Windows 7, HP Laptop) did not want to install the drivers automatically. I disconnected the device 3 times, then went to do a manual driver search through the DYMO website. This seemed to work much better and the proper programs/drivers installed instantly without issue. The DYMO LabelManager 280 handles labels at 1/4", 3/8" and the included 1/2" width, though the font has over 20 size variations and even the 1/2" tape can be cut to fit your project's needs. I was a bit concerned about the ease of peeling the label from the backing, but DYMO uses a simple 2 piece peel system that always ensures a fuss free application. The LabelManager 280 includes a limited one year manufacturer's warranty, when registered upon activation, and software updates are provided free through the website. In all, I am impressed with the initial ease of use that will have Momma marking items in no time; with the option to expand on technicalities down the line.

What Daughter Says: The LabelManager will make getting organized this Spring a breeze!

One Momma Told Me reader will win a DYMO LabelManager 280, courtesy of Penny Wise Office Products!

Fashion Angels: Tapeffiti- Mini Decorative Tape Rolls

designer tape
 ***Note: I was provided the following product by a PR agency in exchange for my opinion. Regardless, all opinions are genuine and original. No other compensation was offered.
Momma Told Me: Less is more (expensive).

If you've ever set foot in a lingerie store you understand Momma's gem for today. Why does it seem the smaller something gets (phone, bathing suits, dogs), the larger the price tag? In high school I recall becoming obsessed with the Japanese subcultures for Harajuku and Manga, it should come as no surprise the pop culture trends hailing from Asian continents feature tiny replicas of ordinary things, called Kawaii. That is to say, many of the adorable things that force their way into American trends originated overseas, particularly in Tokyo, Japan. When I was a teenager the 'hot' must have was a combination of bejeweled cell phone charms and tiny erasers shaped like food. I must've spent well over $100 in allowance collecting those 'randomly' packaged miniature erasers, and never used a single one for it's actual intention. Much like the Silly Bandz fad of recent years, we actually traded these like currency on the campus, social status' impacted by the quantity in possession.
It may seem silly, but every generation has similar crazes; I unexpectedly walked into 'tiny tapes' when we were sent a Tapeffiti 30 PC Decorative Tape Caddy from the brand Fashion Angels. For those unfamiliar with the brand, Fashion Angels partners with many popular licensed brands (think Barbie and Monster High) to bring young girls fun fashion oriented crafts and activity books. Sabrina (10) is constantly toting around her fashion journal and coloring unique outfits she designs on her Fashion Angels pads. One of the things I especially like about this brand is their wide age range and appeal. Some of the more elaborate, Project Runway, kits require beginning sewing skills, while others are more free in creativity and serve as tools for project inspiration. When it comes to Tapeffiti, however, I seem to have stumbled upon a fad very popular with the tweens. Sabrina knew right away what these mini decorative tapes were and instantly divulged that they were so popular in her school several young girls sold these mini rolls for $1 each!
Knowing that, you can imagine Sabrina's thrill to inherit an entire caddy of 30 mini Tapeffiti rolls; there was no question how popular she would be in upcoming school projects. I have to say, though the 2" long tape dispensers proved a bit of a challenge for my adult hands, I quickly fell in love with the trendy, and sometimes plain silly, prints. There was one roll full of smiling little peas, and several colored animal prints, as well as Sabrina's favorite, the Purple Camouflage print. I was surprised to see that the tape was actually quite easy to work with, and had a dull tacky consistency that easily removed from surfaces during a mistake, yet bonded fairly long term when properly affixed. Of course, this discovery was in the middle of Spring Break, and I quickly took Sabrina's enthusiasm and turned it into a craft. I had a few stray glass containers laying around from empty candle holders and preservative jars. We set out to wrap these items entirely in Tapeffiti.
decorative tape
homemade pencil jar
For such a simple project I was really surprised how much Sabrina enjoyed herself. It may have been from the overwhelming variety and options, but she patiently sat there and wrapped the thin decorative tape around her jar for near a half hour. Every now and then I would feel a nudge in the side, "Hey, check out this one, it's really cool," she'd exclaim as she presented her 'new favorite' Tapeffiti roll. I was also surprised with just how much tape was on each one of those itty bitty tape dispensers- we used each and every one at least once and still have over half the roll left! In the end our projects turned into a makeshift pencil/pen holder, and a new remote control caddy for the couch. Sabrina has used the Tapeffitis several times since to line the spines of her school notebooks and decorate creative class projects. There are countless Tapeffiti products in the Fashion Angels line, and we're looking forward to acquiring some of the Monster High ones next!

What Daughter Says: I, too, have a thing for tiny; luckily Tapeffiti is an affordable way to feed my addiction.

How I Beat The Heat Naturally + Strawberry Kiwi Colada Recipe

Fruti drink recipe
 ***Note: This post has been a compensated piece on behalf of Collective Bias and Fruti.
Momma Told Me: Fruit is naturally sweet, it doesn't need any added sugar!

Growing up my friends and I referred to my father as 'The Ice Cream Man.' For as far back as I can remember, some 23 years now, Pop has worked for a company that manufacturers and services soft serve units found in commercial and fast food restaurants. As a child I always found it glamorous, as I'd listen to his tales of just how tedious 'testing' the product for quality control was. I'm sure I imagined my father driving from place to place eating cups of ice cream all day. Naturally, that wasn't the case, but it certainly fostered a sort of mysticism in my child's eyes. Living in Southern California, just minutes from the beach, didn't hurt either. While we had air conditioning, Momma was insistent I play outdoors the majority of the days during Summer and Spring Break. I didn't mind; this meant plenty of ice cold, and frozen refreshments. Whether we had shopped at Sam's Club or Smart and Final that week, there was always a commercial size box of frozen treats in our freezer.

Ironically enough, for the daughter of the 'Ice Cream Man,' I preferred fruit based bars over ice cream cones and Fudgecicles. I recall there was one brand, who's name escapes me, I particularly enjoyed for the chunks of real fruit hidden inside the semi-translucent bar. Not only was this strawberry banana flavored treat smooth and creamy, but every now and then a sweet and juicy slice of strawberry would peak through the melting surface and tickle my tongue. I loved the texture, and I loved the natural sweetness. As an adult, I've had the delight of filling my own freezer with various frozen refreshments throughout the years. In all honesty, we keep ice cream bars on hand year round- they don't call it Sunny California for nothing! The past few years I've been making more deliberate purchases and educated snacking decisions. I've hunted relentlessly for a natural fruit bar that best imitated those favored childhood bars. I was frustrated to find, time and again, even the closest replications were full of corn syrup and color additives.
frozen fruti bars

Recently I learned about a whole, new to me, brand of 100% natural fruit bars; Fruti. With a simple name that sums it up quite well, Fruit bars are NON-GMO verified and feature a simple list of fruit-first ingredients that ensure consumers are indulging in 'the real stuff,' rather than sugar and water. Their Chunks O' Fruit bars, found at my local Sam's Club, feature generous portions of real fresh harvested fruit frozen among a naturally sweetened fruit and water puree blend. (See more of our Sam's Club excursion in our Google + album, here.) 2 of the 4 featured flavors, Caribbean Mix and Strawberry, are less than 100 calories per bar, and receive minimal added (natural) sugars during processing. If you're like me, and shy away from value buys at big club stores like Sam's, you'll be tickled to know the cube of 16 Chonks O' Fruit bars featured in this variety pack are packaged by flavor in individual boxes. That is to say there are 4, smaller, easy to store boxes inside the large colorful package. This is something I've rarely found when buying frozen treats in bulk, and a great stress saver for me!
Strawberry Kiwi Colada

Judging the packaging, I would never anticipate the quality or flavor packed inside one of these fruit on a stick wrappers. Fruti has a lot to brag about with their corn syrup free, all natural, frozen fruit bars, but closely resembles something I would buy from the local ice cream bicycle cart. On the Sam's Club variety package there are a few recipe ideas intended to help you expand beyond frozen fruit bars to flavorful snacks and even alcoholic drinks. Of course the Fruti website has an even larger plethora of ideas and recipes to ponder. I'll admit, I was inspired to perhaps craft my own Fruti cocktail, but wanted to try the product on it's own first. Late one night I wandered into the bedroom with a Strawberry Fruti in hand, knowing it would pique the interest of the other half. Sure enough, no more than 3 licks in I heard "What's that?" I smiled coyly and ignored the question, intent on enjoying my treat. As it turns out, I could sense the chunks of real, natural, fruit as early as those first initial licks. Strawberry seeds tickled my tongue and the natural tartness of the frozen berries played tricks with the extra sweet frozen fruit bar casing.

As it turns out I am a very nice and generous individual; I shared my secret indulgence with Jay who promptly retrieved one of the Caribbean bars. The Caribbean Fruti has the largest variety of fruit and flavors with strawberries, pineapple. mango, passion fruit, and real coconut flakes. I tend to shy away from tropical flavors, though this was a very complex treat on the palette. Jay remarked multiple times about how he would voluntarily replace many of his everyday snacking options with that particular bar. At just 90 calories, compared to our favorite chocolate shelled Drumstick (260), we could enjoy 2 a day and still shave calories off the bottom line! And just think of the extra vitamins and nutrients naturally derived from additional fruit servings. Yes, the bars, themselves, were an instant #FreshNFruti hit.
frozen fruti snacks

The following day, with temperatures breaking 80, I decided I would create a little afternoon delight for Momma, and a special chilled treat for Sabrina. Combining a dash of new Bacardi Rock Coconut (coconut and melon) Rum with fresh Kiwi, Coocnut Milk, and Fruti Pina Colada and Strawberry Cream bars, I made a Strawberry Kiwi Colada in less than 2 minutes. Not only was this smooth blended frozen cocktail free of tedious preparation (and expensive fresh from the market fruits), Fruti brought the perfect balance of natural sweetness. While Fruti bars are great on their own, they can easily be incorporated into drinks and snacks by simply setting them on the counter for 2-3 minutes to defrost. The bar will still retain it's shape and texture, but easily bend off the stick. I broke a Caribbean Fruti into chunks and tossed it with some chilled fresh fruit for a healthy afternoon snack Sabrina inhaled. The simple addition of the fun frozen treat helps encourage children to eat the added fresh fruit!

What Daughter Says: Fruti proves no 'extras' are needed, just natural, delicious, Chunks O' Fruit.

How To Trap The Fairy Hobmother + Strawberry Cheesecake

Momma Told Me: Fairies are things of childhood dreams and laughter.

I suppose there are some things one simply never grows out of; believing in fairies, for example. Okay, perhaps not the literal representation of a 3" humanoid flying around with sparkles and wings. But that simple taste of magic, the belief that unexpected things can happen at the most unlikely of times. It's the same sense of wonder that keeps us rooting for our favorite team, or prompts us to invest just one more dollar in this week's lottery. So far, 2013 has been a little rocky for me, with what seems like a never-ending parade of health setbacks. Whenever I take on a new life change, such as investing in dental insurance, or cutting sugar consumption, I find another hurdle thrown in my path. Such is life; hurdles and surprises, wonderful surprises. And it's those little sparkles of the unexpected delights that make it all so very much worth it.

You've likely seen those posts floating around about the Fairy Hobmother. Unless mine is the first and only blog you've ever read, odds are you know something about him. Granted, even those of us who have come in contact with this mythical blog character know so very little. The legend tells us bloggers will be visited at random by this playful sprite who exchanges Amazon currency for their efforts in spreading his story and name throughout the Blogosphere. He finds these bloggers by piggybacking the comments of other bloggers on said posts; and so it goes on and on into infinity. Because I have only ever commented on one such post, though I have seen dozens, I know my recent visit was thanks to a mention on Still Blonde After All These Years. I don't normally pay much attention to these blogging fads, which is what I consider it, but I value the Chief Blonde (Shelley's) take and thought I'd give it a whirl.
We waited for what seemed like ages, but the Fairy Hobmother did not come. In our boredom and desperation, we decided to craft a trap of sorts; perhaps we could catch the Fairy Hobmother spying on us through the blog. I'd heard from a little birdie Mr Hobmother, aka Matt Mitchell, favored strawberries. My loyal readers already know that our hometown happens to be the Strawberry Capital of the US. Not only are we surrounded by the smell of sweet strawberry fields, and stands on every block, but we host the annual Strawberry Festival. This is no ordinary event as tourists flock here every year to take part in the unique strawberry culinary creations and festivities. Just next month this event will bring thousands to our small coastal town, though I can already enjoy the fruits of fresh picked berries at home today.
Fairy hobmother

So we got to work and whipped up a mini Strawberry Cheesecake appropriately sized for the Fairy Hobmother and rigged an old Bigelow Tea box with some birthday candles as a trap. It might seem desperate to some, but that Amazon gift card could really help me buy some new furniture, or perhaps a new washing machine. Momma has bills to pay, and raking in some extra dough on the side helps offset the cost of living; even if it means trapping and shaking down a little sprite. Unfortunately, we failed to anticipate just how fast a Fairy Hobmother can truly be, and Matt escaped our contraption with plenty of time. We did, however, catch the culinary praise and attention of said fairy, and received a prompt visit in our inbox. I was thanked for the delightful Summertime treat (who doesn't love cheesecake?), and told to share the Hobmother's mission with my fellow bloggers. If you've yet to receive a visit from the Fairy Hobmother be sure to leave a comment, he just may visit you next!

What Daughter Says:  I don't usually trust grown men in spandex, but how can you argue with one who's shorter than an apple?