Sunday, January 25, 2015

Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Cream Cheese Buttercream

I tried a new recipe this week.  It was yummy.  I ended up making a ton of these, 45 to be exact!  I had planned on making them for Brody's preschool Ms. Mele who had her last day teaching this past Wednesday (So sad!  We are going to miss her!), and I wanted to also bring some to Brody's other preschool teacher Ms. Autumn.  Then I thought I should take some to the daycare workers at the fitness center who are so kind to me and my kids, and I wanted to take a lot to them so the next shift of workers would get some too.  Then Greg told me a coworker asked that I made him some cupcakes because Greg had been bragging about them, haha.  And I want to take some to a friend who was having a rough time.  So, long story short, the demand for cupcakes this time around was a big one.  I'm glad the recipe turned out to be a keeper since I was sending them to just about everyone I knew!

Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Cream Cheese Buttercream

1 package white cake mix
1 package (3.4 oz.) JELL-O Lemon Flavor Instant Pudding
1 cup waters
4 egg whites
2 tablespoons oil
1package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons lemon juice
16 oz. powdered sugar, or more if needed for thickening

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Beat first five ingredients in a large bowl until blended well.  Batter will be thick.  Spoon into 24 paper lined muffin tins.  Bake 21-24 minutes until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean.  Cool in pans 10 minutes.  Remove to wire racks and cool completely.  For icing, beat cream cheese, butter and lemon juice in a large bowl with mixer.  Gradually add in sugar until blended.  Spread on cupcakes.

I topped each cupcake with a Lemoncello Almond (Sariah bought us a bag from Costco; they are delicious).  It was the perfect addition.

10th Anniversary at Disneyland

Greg and I have been saying for years that we would go away, just the two of us, on a real vacation for our 10th anniversary, and that is what we did!

We spent three days in Disneyland, and seriously loved every minute of it!  Greg and I hadn't been since we each went in high school, 15 years ago, and we'd never been to California Adventure before.  We flew there and staying in a hotel within walking distance.  We were there during one of their busiest times, but thanks to some great advice from friends, a little research, wait time apps, and fast passes, we were able to do a ton of stuff - 33 rides and 8 shows, to be exact!

Some of our favorite rides were: California Screamin', Soaring Over California, Tower of Terror, The Haunted Mansion Holiday, Indiana Jones, Space Mountain, Big Thunder Railroad, The Matterhorn (can you tell we like rollercoasters?)  And our favorite shows were: The World of Color, Aladdin and the Holiday Magic Fireworks show.  Disneyland at Christmas time, with all the lights, was absolutely magical!

My hero!  Greg at Inventions, doing what he does best, making me laugh!
Enjoying Dole Whips at the Tiki Room, yum!  It was my favorite treat we had.  Greg's favorite was a salted caramel hot chocolate at the Ghirardelli shop. 
In line for Toy Story Mania.  The longest line we stood in the whole trip - 50 minutes.  But I have to say lines aren't so bad in cool yet sunny weather, and with the absence of whiney kids.  We couldn't complain!
We spent about half the trip planning our next trip with kids.  We can't wait to take them!  But it was great getting away just to two of us.  We had so much fun!  I seriously can't think of a place Greg and I would have had more fun visiting. And when we do take the kids, we are now Disney savvy and can get the most out of our trip.  Until next time Disneyland!