What a day! Zach and I headed out for Omaha this afternoon, to partake in the Family Fun Festival, where almost all of the downtown attractions open their doors with no admission fees and cater to the kids. And there's a trolley that takes you from place to place! And then you get passes to the Holiday Wildlights at the Zoo for that night. So Zach and I started at the Joslyn Art Museum, where he painted and made prints and decorated a cowboy hat and rode in a stagecoach, and then we went to the Durham Western Heritage Museum, where we did a scavenger hunt, panned for gold, and had a picture with Jack the Dog. Do you sense a western theme? It's because Wells Fargo was a sponsor. Then we went to the zoo, where we both got pictures with Jack the Dog, and Rudolph, and we looked at the lights and went through the aquarium and bought Bailey some birthday presents. Then we went downtown and walked around under the lights until we couldn't stand the cold anymore, and then we had dinner at Old Chicago, where the very nice server let me use her phone to call Mike, because I had left mine at home. We lost my gloves and Zach's hat, but all in all, we had a fabulous day. Oh, and we stopped off at Cabela's for some Christmas shopping, and Santa was there!
Here's the recipe for the Chocolate Peppermint Wafers:
Melt about 8 squares of Baker's Semi Sweet chocolate in the microwave. Add 1/4 tsp peppermint extract. Don't add too much, or it will mess up the chocolate. Then cover either Ritz crackers or vanilla wafers with the chocolate. Smash up some peppermint candy canes and sprinkle on top. That's it! Sometimes I get really motivated and I melt some white chocolate, color it with green food coloring, and plop a dollop of it on top of the chocolate. But mostly I don't. I know the Ritz crackers probably sound gross, but I'm telling you, they're as addictive as thin mints.
I am not making these for my cookie exchange on Tuesday. I am making something called Seven Layer Magic Bars, which are out of this world. YUMMY. I kid you not. They disappear as fast as I make them. Here's the recipe:
Melt one stick of butter or margarine in a 9 x 13 pan at 350 degrees. Cover with about 1 1/2 cups of graham cracker crumbs. Cover crumbs with a 14 oz can of sweet condensed milk. Cover that with a cup of butterscotch chips. Cover that with a cup of semi sweet chocolate chips. Cover that with 1 1/3 cups of coconut. Cover that with 1 cup of chopped pecans. Press down with a fork. Bake for about 22 minutes. Chill and when cool, cut them up. It works better if you put a thicker layer of crust, or if you line the pan with foil first.
And for the muffins - this recipe was on 2peas, so I can't take credit for it. Just mix a box of spice cake, a can of pumpkin, and a bag of chocolate chips. I add applesauce as a filler to make it more moist. Then bake at 350 for 25 minutes or however long it takes. I'm not very scientific, I just cook it and don't really write any of this stuff down. So I'm not good at giving exact measurements or times. But live a little and just give it your best guess. These muffins are cheap, easy, and really good!