Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Makin' Buckeyes - P Dub Style

This was originally posted Dec. 3, 2008. I made these again this morning. The only thing I did slightly different was to make them a little smaller and I only made 1 batch. It yielded not quite 8 dozen buckeyes.

Tomorrow is my monthly MOPS group meeting. I am enjoying having a reason to get out of the house to do something other than grocery shopping or running other errands. It even gives me an excuse to dress up a little and wear make-up (which I usually only do on Sundays or if Ande and I are going out somewhere). For this meeting, we're having a cookie exchange, where the participants each bring 3 dozen cookies to trade with each other. I didn't really feel like baking cookies, and I didn't want to go store-bought (not that there's anything wrong with store-bought cookies. Especially Pepperidge Farms.) I decided to, instead of making cookies, make Buckeyes. They're one of my favorite Christmas traditions. I remember watching my mom baking cookies and making such sweet delights as Divinity, Pecan Tarts, and of course Buckeyes. She only did this at Christmas, so it was a special treat. I thought I'd share the process with you, my faithful readers. I wanted to mix it up a bit, and thought I'd try to post the recipe A la Pioneer Woman. Now, I'm not nearly as entertaining to read as her, but I'll try my best. Enjoy!

When Pioneer Woman posts recipes, she also posts pictures and funny tips. Not that this recipe is all that complicated, but I thought I'd channel a little P Dub and do that myself. Please note, this Buckeye recipe is slightly different than Shelly's (which I'm sure is delicious, too. This is just the recipe I grew up with).

Mmmmm....Buckeyes. They're YUMMY. Not the Ohio State Buckeyes. Not the "hairless nuts with no commercial value" buckeyes. Peanut-buttery-chocolate-coveredy (yes, I did just make that word up, thanks for noticing) little round bits of heaven is what I'm talkin' about here!

Here's what you start with:


12 oz Creamy Peanut Butter

3/4 Cup Butter, softened (not melted)

1 tsp. Vanilla (I use Pure Vanilla Extract, because it tastes better)

1 LB Powdered (Confectioner's) Sugar

1 oz Paraffin Wax (Which is NOT located in the baking aisle. You can find it where you'd find the canning supplies) It sounds weird, but don't leave it out. Trust me.

12 oz Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

(Please note, I made a double batch, which gave me about 8 dozen Buckeyes - this recipe should give you around 4 dozen or so)


Combine first four ingredients in a large bowl. Here's the peanut butter - I weighed it to make sure I had the right amount.

The butter (well, I used margarine, but butter would work too)

The vanilla (OH MY WORD do I ever LOVE the smell of vanilla extract!)

And the powdered sugar. I really could have used a larger bowl...


Knead the ingredients with your hands thoroughly. It's pretty sticky at first, but after a few minutes it will turn into a large ball of dough. I would have taken a picture of the kneading process, but I would have needed an extra hand to do so, since both of my hands were covered in peanut butter...which is not very good for holding and/or operating a camera.


Roll dough into small balls. I usually just grab a bit of dough and roll it between my hands until it forms a nice little ball. You could make them a little bigger or smaller if you wanted. Place the doughballs onto a cookie sheet lined with waxed paper.


Refrigerate for one hour. If your fridge is like mine, you have no room to do that. I've got a side-by-side that doesn't really hold as much as I'd like. Of course, if I got rid of some of the science projects I'm certain are residing in the back of the fridge, I probably would have room. BUT, I live in Michigan where it's cold. So, if you live in a cold climate like me, you can use what I like to call the Redneck Refrigerator. My dough is currently resting (covered) on my porch, because it's currently 37 degrees F(feels like 29) outside. If you don't have cold enough weather to do that, then I guess you'd better get in the kitchen and clean out your refrigerator!
After your hour is up, take the paraffin wax and chocolate chips and heat over low heat until melted.

Make sure you stir the paraffin and chocolate chips while they are melting.
Once the chocolate is nice and smooth, you're ready to dip the dough balls. Using a toothpick inserted into the center, lower the dough ball down into the chocolate and cover all but the top.
Place the chocolate covered dough balls on waxed paper to cool.
Now, I don't like the toothpick holes in the tops of my buckeyes. So I set one doughball aside. Pinching tiny bits of dough off, I was able to "fill in" the holes. You can see at the top of the following picture how much better it looks with the holes filled in. However, you don't HAVE to do that if you don't want to.

Let the buckeyes cool completely, then store tightly covered in a cool place. (Mine will be returning to the Redneck Refrigerator!!)
So, I hope you've enjoyed the tutorial. If you make these, leave me a comment and let me know how they turned out!!

Friday, December 18, 2009

No excuses!

Stop the presses!

Puckey changed the toilet paper roll all by herself today.

Why is this a big deal?

Well, because she's:
  • 4 years old
  • was not asked to do it
  • has never been shown how to do it

Therefore, take no excuses from anyone over the age of four that they can't change the toilet paper roll. They can.

**Disclaimer** My daughter IS pretty much a genius, but even non-geniuses can do this, I promise!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Thinking of a dear friend

Today is the 2nd anniversary of when my dear friend Dev suffered the worst lost a mom can have. Thinking of and praying for her much today!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

This year I VOW that my Christmas will NOT suck!

For those of you who've been around long enough, you may remember last year, when I wrote about how my Christmas was kind of a train wreck. It was so bad I never even set up a Christmas tree, which is one of my favorite things to do! I felt so bad for the kids, because even though they didn't complain, I felt like I let them down. After the holidays were over, I made a promise to myself that I would not let it happen again this year.

So far, we're off to a great start!

Handmade paper garland and "star". Fortunately, I already had all the paper I needed for it, so it was a free project to make! YAY

Puckey helping to decorate the tree.

All done decorating! The girls are THRILLED, since neither of them remembers a Christmas WITH a tree...

The finished tree

It might be somewhat small, but I like my little tree. (However, I will hopefully be able to get a new, taller tree on sale this year after Christmas!)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

So...this was me last month. On the day I turned the big 3-5.

This is me today. The day I turned the big 3-5 + 1 month. :)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Tuesday Tip O' The Day

So...bet you all gave up on my "Tuesday Tip O' The Day" posts, huh? Yes, I've been pretty busy lately and haven't done much blogging. However, this was something I thought might be useful to my readers, especially ones with little girls.

How many times has your little one had a cute shirt like this...

Or this...I mean, could the picture on this shirt BE any cuter?
But then they get a stain like this:
Or both a hole (top arrow) AND a stain (bottom arrow) like this:
There's plenty of wear left in both of these shirts, so I don't want to throw them away! What to do?

With these helpful tools, a sewing machine, and a little bit of time, you can make the shirts a usuable part of your little girl's wardrobe again!

First you need to decide where to cut the shirt off at. In this case, I went slightly below the stain, which will end up in the seam allowance...

Using a rotary cutter and a clear ruler, I cut the shirt off. (Note, while you can use scissors, a rotary cutter makes a nice, clean cut REALLY fast!)

Since the stain was lower on this shirt, I just cut it off leaving enough space so that the embroidered design wouldn't be affected .

After the cut.

Now, why would I cut the shirts off? So I could make them into dresses!! For the green shirt, I chose this plaid flannel fabric, which coordinated pretty well. It was also on sale, so for the 1/2 yard I needed, I paid just $1.75.

I folded the fabric in half, matching the short edges. Using my sewing machine, I sewed a seam along the short edge of the fabric.

Then I pressed the seam open with my iron so it would lay flat.

Then I sewed a long running stitch along the top edge of the fabric. I set the sewing machine up to sew the longest, most loose stitch possible.

Holding one end of the thread, I gently pulled the other end of the thread tight to gather the material. I did this until the gathered area was approximately the same size as the cut edge of the shirt
. Pinning RIGHT sides together, I pinned the cut edge of the shirt to the gathered edge of the skirt.

This is before sewing the bottom hem of the skirt.

The finished "new" dress!

The fabric I bought for the melon colored shirt was a little more fancy (and a little more expensive, but still on sale - I paid $2.50 for 1/2 yard). I think the fabric type is called Moleskin. Super soft and easy to work with. I decided to get a bit more sophisticated with this one, so I created pleats approximately every 2 inches along the top edge of the fabric. Then I ran a stitch along the top to keep the pleats in place while I continued working.

Here is a view of the "right" side of the fabric with the pleats pinned.

Since the Moleskin fabric is a little heavier and the pleats leave less room for sewing errors, I used a piece of twill tape to keep the cut edge of the shirt from getting stretched out. I sewed this on the "wrong" side of the fabric with a straight stitch.

Here is the shirt with the twill tape sewn in place.

At this point, my camera battery died, so I don't have any more "in progress" pictures. *sigh*
Anyway, after sewing on the twill tape, I pinned the pleated edge of the skirt to the cut edge of the shirt (RIGHT sides together) and sewed a seam. Then I folded the bottom of the skirt up once (approximately 1/2 inch) then again to create a 3/4" bottom hem.
Here's the finished dress.

You could use this idea as I did, to get more use out of a stained shirt, or to create a "new" dress for your little girl. The total cost for these two "new" dresses was $5.34. The shirts used for these projects were 4T. I used 1/2 yard of 45" wide fabric for each one, plus a little less than a yard of twill tape for the melon/brown one. Depending on the size of your child, you might need more or less fabric.