recipe: peanut butter cup brownies

An Instagram friend posted a picture of some peanut butter cup brownies that she had baked a few months back. I thought that they looked soooo delicious, and so I asked her to send me the recipe. She did, and after changing a few ingredients, I went on to make them for our family. I think that they were only in our fridge for about three days before we devoured them all. This is something that I will definitely be making again and again.

Peanut Butter Cup Brownies

Ingredients: 

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
¾ cup butter
½ cup peanut butter
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 large eggs
1 ½ cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
¾ cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp salt
9 peanut butter cups
butter, to grease

Steps:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9×9 baking dish with butter.

2. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine first 4 ingredients. Place in microwave and cook for 40-second increments until mixture is smooth.

3. Beat eggs, sugar, and vanilla together in a large bowl. Stir in microwave ingredients. Slowly add flour and salt and mix until well combined.

4. Pour half of the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Put peanut butter cups evenly on top. Then pour the remaining mixture on top. Place in oven for about 45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Do not overcook.

Emory

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nesting

This pregnancy, my nesting instincts have been kicked into high gear. Like most pregnant mothers, I constantly feel the urge to rearrange, remodel, or fix things around our home.

I think that my nesting might be more intense this time around because we weren’t living in our own place when I was expecting Remy. I remember nearing the end of that pregnancy and crying after every doctor’s appointment because we didn’t have a separate bedroom for our baby. I somehow had it in my mind that he/she deserved one, and I felt like less of a parent because I couldn’t provide that. Back then, Geoffrey was going to school full-time and I was only working part-time. To save money, we rented out our house and moved into the second home on my parent’s acreage. Once our renters moved out, we listed our house but kept living at their acreage. I desperately wanted to move back into our home, but by then I was “too pregnant.” I was beyond grateful to be living somewhere for free, but I still remember that feeling of helplessness.

This pregnancy, everything is so different! We are settled in our own home, Geoffrey is working, and Remy and the baby have a bedroom. In the meantime, I’ve been trying to perfect each room in preparation for a new baby. This includes the exterior as well. I know from experience that we won’t be able to really redecorate once baby is here, so I’m trying to get it out of the way now. It’s been really fun. Here is what we have tackled in the last few months:

Ever since we renovated our kitchen, I’ve been unhappy with the empty space above the stove. Above is what it looked like.

I asked my followers on Instagram what they would put there, but the polls came back with inconclusive answers.

After leaving it for awhile, I came across a crate that we had stored on our basement. I hung it up one afternoon and it’s been the right fit ever since. That is, until we get backsplash!

We also have been hanging other items on our kitchen walls, and adding a ton of plants.

Our backyard and front yard have received similar attention. Tired of the unstained deck and rotting trim on the garage, we chose to finally hang new wood and stain the preexisting decks. Above is a before picture.

Here is the result. Much better. We have been gardening like mad, replanting the sod, bought outdoor furniture, and hung a flower box in the front. We’re slowly but surely fixing the outside of our home. Next month, we get a new roof!

Our living room was next on my list. Here is what it looked like before the new flooring and paint.

This is how we had it for the last few months. That cord always bothered us, and it just felt like an unfinished space. I decided to turn it into a gallery wall. See below.

This is still a work in progress. We have hung three pictures so far, but are waiting for the birth of our new baby to hang the remaining three. I love how it’s turning out!

Remy’s room is also getting redecorated a bit. I’ve rearranged her shelves and walls, and this weekend we’re buying her a bigger bed.

Our room is going to serve as the nursery for the first few months. It is the only room in our home that we haven’t touched over the last few years. Above is how we had it.

This is what it looks like now. We hung curtains, painted the room, and are clearing a space for the crib. I’m probably most excited about this area, and will reveal more as we go along.

That’s it for now. There have been other recent changes but they will have to wait for another day.

Have a lovely week and weekend, all!

Emory

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a prairie pregnancy (and letting go)

Everyone goes through ups and downs in life. That is a fact. Before I became pregnant for the third time, I had gone through almost a year of lows. My contracted job abruptly ended, for a time we weren’t able to afford our bills, my husband moved away for 5 months, I stopped breastfeeding Remy and she became sick with multiple ailments, I suffered from depression, and I experienced a miscarriage, alone, at Christmas. Yet, I tried so hard not to complain to anyone. How I coped was through my tears. I would just cry and cry. At the time, I didn’t want to burden anyone with my problems. We’ve all got them. I knew that eventually, every negative thing would pass. I hoped that it would get better, and after a difficult year it did.

Since April of 2018, I have not felt depressed. We have beautiful weather, we have new life joining us, we are settled in our home, my husband is here and is working a great career, and more. I am thankful to have gone through so many recent lows in order to fully appreciate where we are at this moment. I’m not saying that it will last, but for now, we are rejoicing.

That said, a part of me feels a loss. I look at my child and my growing belly and it saddens me how I don’t have a closer relationship with certain family members (ie. my own parents). As I get older, these relationships only seem to worsen.

Yet, I am constantly grounded by this life growing inside of me. To feel its kicks every time I eat a meal or lay in bed, and know that it’s there every second of the day from this roaring heartburn. I feel as if it’s time to stop putting so much worry into what I can’t fix at this very moment, and to really concentrate on those who are present in my life. I do have hope that one day, these relationships will improve. Only time will tell.

So thank you to my friends and family who are there. Thank you baby for this renewal. I promise to be the best mother to you. Always.

Emory

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recipe: roasted chickpeas

This pregnancy, I seem to crave nothing but sweet foods during the day, and savory foods at night. Not wanting to gain a hundred pounds (I’m not a pretty pregnant woman), I’m trying to substitute healthy alternatives to classic salty snacks- ie. chips and popcorn. I remembered a recipe that I used to make back when I was a vegetarian and needed more protein in my diet. Enter roasted chickpeas. They are super salty and crunchy, and all sorts of healthy. Enjoy!

Roasted Chickpeas

Ingredients:

2 cups chickpeas, drained
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp seasoning salt
½ tsp chili powder
½ tsp garlic powder

Steps:

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. In a medium-sized bowl, combine all ingredients. Toss until chickpeas are well coated.

2. Spread the chickpeas onto a baking sheet. Place in the oven for approximately 45 minutes, or until desired crunchiness. Remove from oven, and put into airtight container. Eat whenever you are craving something salty, healthy, and delicious!

Emory

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24 weeks

Friends! I’m now 24 weeks pregnant. Or 6 months, if you are counting literally. This will also be the last month of my second trimester.

I have been so lucky over these last 4 weeks. I have had next to no symptoms, aside from daily heartburn, the nightly swelling of my legs and feet, and periodic Braxton Hicks contractions. Looking back at this time with Remy, I see that I was also feeling great and established a really productive routine during the day. This must be the magical time of pregnancy for me, at least. I cannot say the same for all mamas with great certainty. If only all pregnancies were this easy. ;-)))

Here are a few more facts about growing babe:

– he/she weighs about 1.3 lbs
– now measure him/her head to toe
– his/her skin has a pinky hue
– he/she can taste what I eat

So far, I’ve gained around 18 lbs. It’s more than I would have hoped for, but as long as we get a healthy little one, it is worth it!

Emory

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  • Welcome, friends! My name is Emory. I am a wife and mother to three (one on earth, one in heaven, and growing another). This is our life on the Canadian prairies.
    email: helloscarlettblog@outlook.com

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