30 Months!

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Our boy is 2.5 years old today! Wow how time flies. He is officially our little man and no longer a baby. It’s hard to believe how fast the time goes. Jude weights 29lb and is 36in tall. He wears 2T and 3T tops and bottoms (depending on the brand) – Carters he is mainly wearing 3T – pants are still a little long and Gap he is wearing 2T pants and both sizes in tops.

He is full on boy and loves to run and jump and climb. Lots of climbing and jumping! Bounce houses and climbing walls are some of his favorite things. He loves using his “skateboard” (kitchen step stool) to help make pb&j or pizza for dinner. He still loves his paci but only gets it at night time. He likes to talk about the potty a lot and knows he gets candy if he goes but he is still holding strong to those diapers and usually says “its broken” whenever we sit him on the potty to try. 🙂

He loves balls and trucks and so many of his toys. His favorite color is currently purple and his favorite shirt is Superman and favorite pjs are Christmas or spiderman with a cape! He is super sweet and hugs his sisters when he sees them in the hallway at school and always wants to know why they are crying or upset. He is a big helper and will bring them toys as long as they don’t want one of his!

Halloween was a big hit and we are still watching Toy Story’s and Mickey’s Halloween shows on repeat. Hoping we can transition to Thanksgiving and Christmas over the next couple of weeks.

I love our happy and growing boy!

Pumpkin Patch Palooza

I love fall. I absolutely love it. I’m not really into the pumpkin spice lattes and pumpkin breads and treats that most other people love- my thing is all the outdoor fall activities! There is so much to see and do and I’m a huge fan, especially when you have 3 kids under 3 years old to entertain on a regular basis. Fall means lots of free, or relatively inexpensive, activities for everyone to see and enjoy. So check out our review of the local farms we’ve visited so far . . .

Burt’s Farm

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Our first stop was to Burt’s Farm. We actually went here the last weekend in September. I’ve never been before but KH  had and suggested we avoid the crazy October crowds and hit this one early. Apparently the lines get incredibly long (even to get int he parking lot!) and with our little 3 that was not something we wanted to mess with.

Pumpkins – Burt’s has LOTS of pumpkins to choose from. All colors and sizes. They even have farm grown squash and other vegetables as well you can buy.

Hayride- They hayride at Burt’s is a MUST. Seriously the best one we’ve been on. Its about 20 min long and they literally have set something up every step of the way for you to see and experience. I don’t want to spoilt the fun but just know you won’t be staring at farmland or woods the whole time. My 8 year old niece said, “this is the best hayride I’ve ever been on!” and I absolutely agree with her. You can’t beat it. Cost is $5/person. 2 and under are free.

Activities – There really aren’t many other things for kids to do. There is a tractor they can sit on but no farm animals or other activities beyond the hayride.

Shopping- We went through the store pretty quickly but they have lots of locally made preserves, breads and other products as well as homemade crafts you can pick up.

Photo Opp- Lots of photo opp spots including this one below with the Burt’s Farm name in the background!

The Draw – The awesome hayride and the variety of pumpkins!

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Kinsey Family Farm

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Out second stop was Kinsey. It’s become an annual tradition as it was the first place we took our son to see Pumpkins when he was only 5 months old and the tradition has continued. It’s a small family farm with an overall great experience.

Pumpkins-  Kinsey has a good amount of pumpkins to choose from, just not as many as Burt’s. Some white ones as well and lots of different sizes.

Hayride- Good hayride takes you around the farm property where you get to see the animals as well as the Christmas tree area. Cost is $2/person. 2 and under are free.

Activities- The farm includes goats and cows which you can feed for a small price to buy the food. You can bet them for free 🙂

Shopping – There is a very small store with jared preserves, honey, pumpkins breads and even a couple t-shirts.

Photo Opp – Plenty of nature spots around the farm and with the pumpkins and hay bales.

The Draw- Kinsey is smaller, easier to get in and out, and a shorter drive than most other places. We like it for the “ease” factor.

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Warbington Farms

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Our third stop was Warbington Farms. We went earlier in May to go strawberry picking and had a great time. This past weekend they had a Pumpkin Palooza with lots of activities and fun for the whole family. Warbington is the only one that charges to actually get in the farm but there is lots to do there. Cost is $10/person. 2 and under are free.

Pumpkins- A very small area sectioned off. I’m not sure if they actually grow the pumpkins there. It’s separate from the rest of the farm.

Hayride- The hayride was VERY short. The price is included in the cost of visiting the farm. We got to see more of the farmland and got to see them feed the cows but that was about it. They hayride is also not actually a hayride but a ride on bench seats on the back of a tractor.  Cost is Free.

Activities- LOTS of activities. They had multiple bounce houses, a giant blob bouncy, slides, a corn bin where kids could get in and jump around among, a corn maze, vendors selling items, face painting, as well as a petting area where we got to pet a 5 DAY OLD cow! So sweet! Couldn’t believe he was only 5 days old! We also got to pet some goats and a big. Bring a good stroller if you have little kids. The activities are all within walking and sight distance but you might need to push around the little ones.

Shopping – When we went there were vendors selling some of their crafts and local items however generally there is no shopping. Just a concession area with some food and drinks for sale. (During strawberry season they sell homemade strawberry ice cream which is AMAZING! but that’s just in the summer!)

Photo Opp – There were multiple picture cut outs to stop and get a picture as well as a sign by the entrance.

The Draw- While its a bummer its so expensive there really is a TON to do for kids and its a short drive as well – just off exit 17 on 400.

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Celebrating 1 Year!

Our baby girls turned 1 this past weekend! ONE! I can’t believe it. It’s so true what they say, “the days are long but the years are short.” And this past year just went way too quickly. To celebrate our baby girls we had a small party at home with a pink and purple theme of course! I LOVE to color coordinate our girls – its just helped over the past year in telling them apart, especially for other people. I’m also hoping it helps them know what belongs to each girl so they have some sense of things belonging to each of them and that they don’t have to share absolutely everything! So Sloane’s color is pink and Maisie’s is purple. A friend of mine with twins calls them their birth colors. She did something similar with her twins. And I love it!

So on to the party details.. Here we go!

The Photo Shoot

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We took one of our office chairs out in the woods behind our house and I took some pics of the girls while KH entertained them and made them smile for me. We used these for the invitation as well as decor at the party.

The Invitation
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I was so glad to find one to match our pink and purple theme! Thanks Shutterfly!

The Outfits

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I found the design on Etsy but them ordered them through a local contact who was able to make them for me. The tutus came from Amazon. $6.50 each and LOTS of colors to choose from! Can’t beat it!

The Decorations 

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I really took advantage of Amazon this year. From high chair decor to streamers to pom poms and banners, balloons, candles, straws and paper products, it all came from Amazon!  Free 2 day shipping made decorating this year a blast! (And really quick and simple)

The Food

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I decided to try and change things up and not do all of my typical “go to” party foods. The caprese sticks and sausage dip are the same but I also added in cheese cubes with pearl toothpicks, a fruit tray from Publix, pink and purple m&ms from Party City, pink (cherry cola) popcorn, purple (grape) popcorn, white (white chocolate candy corn) popcorn and chicago style popcorn all from Heavenly Gourmet Popcorn. Lollipops from Party City were the party favor and pictures were used for decoration. I am missing the main dish in the pic which leads me to these . . .

Ham and Swiss Cheese Slides

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Heavenly. That’s all you need to know. I barely got one before they were all devoured. A definite repeat. Make them!

Cakes

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Publix came through with beautiful smash cakes as well as a larger pink and purple cake for everyone else. I love how the ombre roses came out! My fav! *Note smash cakes are usually free from Publix when you order a birthday cake there. However when you customize it there is a price associated with it. Based on how these turned out though it was well worth it. I LOVED the girls cakes. (And yes they are both crying.. oh well! Glad they look cute at least!)

Family Pic

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A full day but we made it and Sloane and Maisie had an incredible celebration! Big thanks to my besties, Jesslyn and Emily, for helping us decorate and make all the party food. And another big thanks to my mom for taking all the pics so I could play hostess and then just enjoy all the fun as well. And last but night least, of course a HUGE thanks to KH for being the best teammate and husband I could ever ask for. You always make party planning a blast! Love you!

 

Ham and Swiss Sliders

My party food has gotten a little redundant lately, so for our baby girls’ 1st birthday party I decided to try these sliders instead of my regular pigs in blankets or alternative meat dish. And I’m so glad I did!  Let’s just say they went fast and I’m lucky I got to try one! So please excuse the picture, I was planning to get a pretty pic of a full plate of these things but they were almost gone by the time I got to them. A definite winner for appetizers, party food, or just lunch in general for a spin on ham and cheese. Big thanks to my friend Emily who made them while we finished decorating! Hit of the party!

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Ingredients
  • 24 white dinner rolls, I LOVE King’s Hawaiian Rolls
  • 24 pieces honey ham
  • 24 small slices Swiss Cheese
  • â…“ cup mayonaise
  • â…“ cup miracle whip
Poppy Seed Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. poppy seeds
  • 1½ Tbsp. mustard
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 1 Tbsp. minced onion
  • ½ tsp. Worcestershire sauce
Directions:
  1. In a small bowl, combine mayonnaise and miracle whip.
  2. Cut Rolls in halves. Spread mayonaise-miracle whip mixture on each side of the roll. Place a piece of honey ham and Swiss cheese on one half of each roll. Fold back into sandwich form.
  3. Place rolls close together in a greased 9×13 pan until pan in completely full.
  4. Mix together all ingredients of Poppy Seed Sauce. Spread evenly over the tops of all the rolls. *NOTE* I did not use all the sauce. Let the rolls set until the butter has set up a bit. Cover with aluminum foil and Bake at 350 degrees F for 12-15 minutes.
  5. Rolls can be made a day ahead and stored in fridge until ready to bake.

Original recipe available HERE.

1 Year!

 

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I can’t believe its already been a year since we welcomed our sweet baby girls into this world and our family! Happy Birthday Sloane and Maisie! Seems like only yesterday and forever that we were in the hospital holding our precious and tiny babies.

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Sloane Anne. Born first but I had to wait to hold you second. It’s so funny how I originally thought you were so “laid back” and then quickly realized you have a little bit of sass in you. I love how you go after what you want and lead the pack in what the next adventure is going to be. I love how you throw your head back when you want us to throw you in the air. You steal toys and pacis like you’re the boss but only with your sister. You are content to play on your own but only as long as someone else is close by, especially your brother or sister. You are big talker and love to squeal, talk, dance and laugh. I love how you suck your thumb when you’re tired and hold your wubanuub’s left with your hand. I love how you will eat anything we put in front of you – as long as we feed it to you. I love how you say “mama” and clap when we say “yay”. I love how you keep us on our toes and always seem to find a piece of dog food on the floor to nibble up. I love how much fun you are. And I love that you are ours.  I love you Sloane Anne. Happy 1st Birthday!

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Maisie Lynne. Born second but I got to hold you first. You gave us a little scare those first few days but I love how you quickly bounced back and made it home in record time. You are a fighter and adventurous but you are also so snuggly and sweet. I love how you laugh- big, loud, belly laughs. I love how you always have to be moving and doing something. I love how sweet you are and how you always try to hold your sister’s hand (which she doesn’t like). I love how you love to explore and how much you stand and travel from the couch to table. You are so close to walking! I love how you want to be in the middle of all the action and have everyone around. I love how you only cry when you’re tired and want your paci. I love how you eat everything we put in front of you (including what’s on Sloane’s plate) and want to do it all yourself. I love how you try to mimic what we do and clap when we say “yay”. I love how much fun you are. And I love that you are ours.  I love you Maisie Lynne. Happy 1st Birthday!

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Our baby girls transitioned from formula to whole milk over the past 1-2 weeks. Mainly because we ran out of formula and didn’t want to buy anymore. They have no problem drinking milk however we are having to work with them to get them to drink out of a hippy cup instead of bottle and cold milk instead of warm. We are working on it though! Their sample food schedule is below.

1 Year Schedule:

  • 6:30am – 7oz bottle of milk (working on transitioning to sippy cup and cold milk)
  • 6:45am- Breakfast
    • Eggs, Oatmeal, Cheerios, Fruit smoothies, etc
  • 11:30am- Lunch
    • Milk
    • Finger foods including meat, cheese, veggies, fruits
    • Pouch or Applesauce
    • Cereal bar or other teething foods
  • 3:30pm- Snack
    • Milk
    • Yogurt
    • Pouch
    • Baby food if needed
  • 5:30pm – Dinner
    • Milk
    • Samples of whatever we are eating for dinner!

We find out their weights at their doctor appointment on Tuesday. They currently wear 12 month clothes and 12-18 month pajamas.

Anniversary Getaway to Highlands, NC

Kyle and I celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary on August 20. Our (or really my) original vision for our 5 year was to head back to our beloved honeymoon spot and go back to Kauai, Hawaii. We LOVED our honeymoon there and I have been ready to go back every since we left. However, having 3 kids in a little over the last 2 years changed that plan up a bit and so we decided to stay a little closer to home this year. Having already travelled to a lot of the nearby towns within a short driving distance (Savannah, Charleston, Destin, Asheville, etc) we decided to try a new spot and go to Highlands, NC. We didn’t know what to expect but we were thrilled! In short, it was the perfect getaway. Only 2 hours from home, lots of beautiful scenery and hiking. Incredible food, great shopping and even wine tasting. It was the perfect little getaway for us and gave us the peaceful, relaxing, and fun vacation we desperately needed.  Check out the list of everything we did below.

WEDNESDAY

    • Left around 10 am. Easy drive up to Highlands.
    • Lunch at Wild Thyme
      • Kyle had the salmon BLT and I had the fried shrimp sandwich – both served with homemade sweet potato chips.
      • Hiked Glenn Falls (difficulty rating is HARD and it was accurate! Tough hike but incredible falls and great views). We hiked 2.1 miles of the trailIMG_1196

 

  • Shopping Downtown. Our favorite store was Bear Mountain Outfitters. Lots of great outdoor items. We got clothes and shoes (Toms of course) for the kids, and I got a swimsuit for myself.
  • Dinner at Ugly Dog Pub – a local hotspot!
    • Kyle had the 1/4lb Dog House pimento cheese hotdog, made with local beef
    • I had the Dog House salad with smoked chicken
    • Apparently Wednesdays are live music night so it was hard to find a seat at 6:30 when we arrived but luckily we got a seat at the bar
  • Walked back toward our hotel from dinner and stopped for Ice cream at Kilwins of Highlands
  • Sat on balcony of the Main Street Inn where we stayed overlooking main street

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THURSDAY

    • Breakfast at Mountain Fresh Grocery (we split French toast, eggs, grits, hashbrowns, bacon, eggs, and amazing French press coffee)
    • Chattooga iron bridge and river cliffs trail – hiked about 2.5 miles

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    • Lunch at Sports Page Sandwich Shoppe (basic but tasty sandwiches and sides)
    • Pedicures – oh yeah!
    • Shopping down Main Street
    • Wine tasting at Mountaintop Wine Shop
    • Dinner at Wolfgang’s Restsurant and Wine Bistro – Incredible!
      • Hand breaded fried brie with a cranberry walnut compote, a lemon dijon vinaigrette and crustini as an appetizer
      • Kyle had the crab cake on lobster cream sauce and pecan crusted shrimp with  vegetables, orange molasses dipping sauce with a hint of scotch bonnet
      • I had the cajun BBQ shrimp with asiago grits and andouille scented collard greens
      • We also split a piece of the frozen peanut butter pie- it was pretty good but not as good as the appetizer and main dishes.

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FRIDAY

  • Breakfast at Bake My Day- well known for their croissants and they were very tasty!
  • We planned to hit up a couple spots on our way out but decided to head straight home instead and snuggle our babies.

Here is a list of everything we want to do the next time around that we didn’t get to:

  • Visit/hike to Dry Falls
  • Hike to Sunset Rock (at sunset of course)
  • Satulah Mountain
  • Stumphouse Tunnel Park
  • Ugly Dog Pub (again). Great food and really fun atmosphere.
  • I’d probably go back to Wolfgang’s again too. Perfect date night spot and SO. YUMMY.

11 Months!

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Sloane keeps us on our toes. She was originally the “laid back one” but has since successfully eaten Toby’s dog food, most things on the floor and outside including dirt, and even attempted to eat one of my earrings. She loves to follow around her big brother and is the master at stealing toys and pacis (and anything else she can get her hands on.) Her first word was “mama,” but I’m not sure she knows what it means yet 🙂

Maisie is the sweetest. She absolutely loves standing and gets so excited every time she does. She is super patient, even when Sloane steals her paci (most of the time) and loves being around everyone else. My guess is that her first word will be “Dada” – she is so close!

Sloane is our squealer and Maisie is our belly laugher. They are both awesome eaters and sleepers and crawling around non stop. Their new favorite trick is clapping when you say yay! And they are always ready to wave bye-bye in unison. My favorite thing at this stage is when I sit on the floor and they immediately crawl over and get in my lap. Pure sweetness with these two! Love them!

They are currently outgrowing all of their 9 month clothes and moving into 12 month clothes. Only exception is pjs- 12 month are getting too short already and so soon we will be on to 18 month.

Here is their current feeding and nap schedules:

  • 6:30AM – Wake and eat 8 oz bottle
  • 7:00AM- Eat oatmeal (about 4 oz) and cheerios or cut fruit
  • 10:00AM- Nap
  • 11:00AM/11:30AM- Eat 6 oz bottle
  • 11:30AM- Eat yogurt (4 oz) and pouch (4 oz) each
  • 2:00 PM – Nap
  • 3:00/3:30PM – Eat 6 oz bottle
  • 3:30PM- Eat pureed baby food (4 oz combo of veggie and fruit) and finger foods
  • 5:30PM – Eat pureed baby food (4oz – 6 oz) combo of veggie and fruit
  • 6:00PM – Bath
  • 6:30PM- Bed for the night

It’s a FIX!

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 I’ve received a lot of compliments lately on some of the newest additions to my wardrobe and they are all thanks to StitchFix. After gaining 60b with our twin girls and then still working on getting it all off I’ve gone from maternity clothes to needing to buy some very Large clothes to finally getting closer to that pre-pregnancy weight I’ve had my eye on for months now. Unfortunately even though I’m within about 10 pounds of my goal weight I’m no where near fitting into a lot of my old clothes. My body shape has completely changed which has become beyond frustrating. And with 3 kids under 3 years the last thing I want to do is take them all clothes shopping with me, and with limited time with my whole family on the weekends I don’t want to spend hours upon hours on a Saturday shopping solo either. So the answer – StitchFix.

StitchFix is the perfect solution to adding to your wardrobe from the comfort of your home. It’s $20 per shipment (which can be delivered as often as you’d like) and then that $20 goes to the purchase of any item you decide to keep. So worst case if you hate everything you lose $20 but as you’ll see below I liked at least one thing in each of my fixes so far and so I didn’t lose any of the initial $20 payments.

1st Fix: I kept one long sleeve green blouse perfect for work.

2nd Fix: I kept a pair of Mavi skinny jeans which are my new favorites and some Steve Madden gladiator sandals and an orange blouse for work. 

3rd Fix: A yellow tank and navy floral blouse that can go over it as well as a teal blouse perfect for work. 

4th Fix: Everything! A navy blazer, 2 tank blouses with navy accents, a jacket and maroon long sleeve top.* 

*4th times a FIX! The 4th box I’ve received was the 1st time I kept all 5 items and enjoyed the 25% off discount off my entire box. Totally worth it and absolutely LOVE updating my wardrobe from the comfort of my bedroom.

If you have questions let me now! If you’re ready for your first FIX use my referral link: http://stitchfix.com/referral/8303082 #stitchfix

10 Months!

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Happy 10 months baby girls!

Sloane is crawling all over, has 0 teeth, loves all foods and is a master at pulling herself up to her knees. She loves to be where everyone else is, loves to be held and is an expert at crawling over most things in her path. You know she’s tired when she lays her head down and sucks her thumb. She is a big talker and her favorite thing is her silly big brother and all of his toys- especially the box that holds his choo choo trains. It’s her favorite! 


Maisie is crawling all over, has 2 bottom teeth in the center, loves all foods and is a master at pulling herself up to her knees. She likes to be held but also likes to explore. She is an adventurer – she wants everyone close by but wants to see what’s around that she can get her hands and mouth on. You know she’s tired when she starts to get fussy. Her favorite toy is her paci or anything her brother is playing with- especially his trains. She gets super excited when she is being held to stand. 


Both of these girls love the water and love swimming. They also love all veggies and fruits but aren’t huge fans of meat yet. Their newest trick is getting up on their knees and trying to reach for each other through their cribs. We often find them squealing and laughing with each other. We love you sweet baby girls! 

Sloane and Maisie are currently wearing 12 month or 12-18 month pajamas. They still fit in some 9 month clothes but they are definitely getting tight. We mainly only wear 12 month clothes at this point.

Here is their current schedule:

  • 6:30AM – Wake and eat 8oz bottle
  • 7:00AM- Eat oatmeal (about 4 oz)
  • 8:00AM- Nap
  • 10:30AM- Eat 6oz bottle
  • 11:00AM- Eat yogurt (4 oz)
  • 12:00/12:30 PM – Nap
  • 2:30PM – Eat 6oz bottle
  • 3:00PM- Eat pureed baby food (4 oz combo of veggie and fruit)
  • 5:30PM/6:00PM – Eat pureed baby food (4oz – 6 oz) and 2-3 oz bottle
  • 6:00PM – Bath
  • 6:30PM- Bed for the night

We are starting to work toward a 10am and 2pm nap for school so the 10:30am and 2:30pm feedings will soon be at 11am and 3pm instead with 1-1.5 hour naps beforehand.

Marshmallow Crunch Brownie Bars

My team at work got together the other night for a good ole southern summer back porch BBQ. Complete with BBQ on the green egg, homemade mac n cheese and all the fixings. One of the favorite desserts of the night were these crunch bars- the perfect combination of chocolate, peanut butter and a little crunch. Great for kids as well because they don’t fall apart in your hands. Enjoy!

marshmallow-crunch-bars-singleIngredients:

For the Brownie Base:
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2/3 cup unsalted butter
1ÂĽ cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
4 large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the Toppings:
1 bag (10½ ounces) miniature marshmallows
1½ cups milk chocolate chips
1 cup smooth peanut butter (don’t use natural peanut butter)
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
1½ cups Rice Krispies cereal

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×13-inch pan.

2. For the brownies: In a medium saucepan, melt the unsweetened chocolate, butter and Âľ cup of the semisweet chocolate chips over medium heat. Stir occasionally while melting. Set aside and cool for 5 minutes.

3. In a medium bowl sift the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl , whisk the eggs thoroughly. Add the sugar and vanilla and whisk until well blended. Stir the melted ingredients into the egg mixture, mixing well. Stir in the dry sifted ingredients and mix well. Fold in the remaining ½ cup semisweet chocolate chips.

4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the surface with a spatula. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the corner of of the pan comes out with moist crumbs.

5. Remove the brownies from the oven and immediately sprinkle the marshmallows over them. Return the pan to the oven for 3 more minutes.

6. Meanwhile, place the milk chocolate chips, peanut butter, and tablespoon of butter in a medium saucepan. Melt over low heat, stirring constantly, until completely melted. Remove from heat, add the Rice Krispies and mix well. Allow to cool for 3 minutes.

7. Spread the mixture evenly over the marshmallow layer. Refrigerate until chilled before cutting.

Original Recipe available here.