July 31, 2013

Chocolate Lover's Favorite Bundt Cake

Hello, my name is Meg, and I'm addicted to chocolate.

Hiii Meeeggg.

It feels so great to get that stunning confession off my chest. So now that you know my main weakness, it's probably not hard for you to imagine why I wanted to whip up something extra decadent and delicious for this past Sunday's dinner at my in-laws house.

I scoured recipes, looked at what I had on hand, and this concoction is what I came up with!


{ Chocolate Lover's Favorite Bundt Cake }



{ via Ghirarhdeli }

Ingredients:

- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla 
- 1/2 cup cool water
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips

** icing ingredients/directions below **


Directions:

  1. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 6-cup bundt cake pan.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, thoroughly mix the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt for 60 seconds on low speed with the electric mixer. Add the butter, eggs, oil, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons of the water. Beat on low speed just until all of the dry ingredients are moist.
  3. Turn the mixer to medium speed and beat for 1 minute. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl. Add 3 tablespoons water and beat for 20 seconds on medium speed. Scrape the bowl and add the remaining 3 tablespoons water. Beat for 20-30 seconds until the batter is smooth. Fold in the chocolate chips. Scrape the batter into the pan and spread it evenly.
  4. Bake 35-40 minutes (do not open the oven for the first 30 minutes) or until a toothpick inserted into a cakey place in the center of the cake comes out clean (except for melted chocolate chips).
  5. Set the pan on a rack to cool for ten minutes. Invert the cake onto rack (turn the round cake right side up) to cool completely.

{ via Brown Eyed Baker }

- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 6 tablespoons evaporated milk
- 3 & 3/4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla 
- 1/4 teaspoon salt


Directions:


1) In a medium saucepan bring the butter, cocoa powder and evaporated milk to a boil over medium-high heat. Make sure you whisk mixture occasionally to prevent from overcooking.
2) Add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract and salt and whisk continuously until the mixture becomes smooth, about 30 seconds.
3) Immediately remove the pan from the heat and pour the icing over the top of the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides. Work quickly - the icing will begin to harden after it's poured!

.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.

I just added a splash of fresh berries to the center for flavor and color, placed it on a pretty cake stand, and then it instantly looked fancy. I didn't tell anyone it was one of the easiest things I've ever whipped together!

If you haven't checked out Brown Eyed Baker's amazing food blog, please do! It's absolutely one of my go to sites for quality recipes... yum!

Looking forward to trying this ultra-easy version of the bundt cake for my girls night this Saturday!


Bon Appetit!


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Life Lately - Photo Overload

Well, boy howdy, do I have some catching up to do in the photo department!

I meant to share half of these last week and time got away from me.
So today's the day... lucky you! ;)


Now that's called irony. Hahahaha.


Absolutely LOVING our weather lately!


Did some doggie sitting. Beast loved supervising the neighborhood with that big monster!


Sleepless in Seattle. Wine. Me time at it's finest.
(yes, I realize I am a walking girly cliche.)


I made this decadent chocolate beauty this weekend in our new kitchen! 
Recipe coming this afternoon!


Don't worry, I didn't let the extra chocolate go to waste! ;)


Speaking of new kitchens... I spent Saturday organizing and creating this cute little coffee station. I love how it turned out! Kitchen renovation reveal TOMORROW!


Did anyone watch The Bachelorette? Galley Bay Antigua was where we honeymooned! 
Isn't it gorgeous? Take me back!

Ice cream and beach reads in bed is totally permissible for a good time.


Sleepy puppies and furry paws make my heart happy.


Found my sister just "lounging" like this in our kitchen... because that's totally normal. #weirdo


So we went to a wedding. I had the most handsome date!

And had fun being silly with my friends...

...and successfully accomplished the poofy half up/half down!

I have been on a boxed wine kick lately. And yes, I use frozen grapes to keep my Pinot chilled! ;)

And last but not least, my husband loves his grill. And I don't mind not cooking dinner. :)


Yup, that is pretty much life in a very random nut shell! But stay tuned... kitchen renovation coming tomorrow, and updates on my big girls night party coming Friday!!


Happy Hump Day, y'all!


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July 29, 2013

Mingle Monday Link-Up!

Welcome back to the work week! I hope you all had a lovely weekend!

So let's just get to it, shall we? Let's mingle!


 
    

HOW TO MINGLE

 
1) Must be a Life of Meg follower to participate.
 
2) Click on the link below to enter your blog.
 
3) Go visit other blogs saying hello from Mingle Monday!
 
4) Answer the weekly question in the comments section below...
 
 
**  What was the highlight of your weekend? **





____________________________________________________________________________________________


// Sponsor Spotlight //


See this gorgeous girl? This is Sharaya from Sharaya Mauck Photography.
She is the mastermind photographer behind our engagement and wedding photos, and will be shooting a mini session for my blog this Friday! Yup, I'm way excited!!

Anyway, go stop by her fantastic blog to get a little sneek peek inside of her world - she's so creative and she will inspire you BIG time!




____________________________________________________________________________________


** ALSO **

Personal blog RTs for your blog on Twitter all day for everyone who tweets about Mingle Monday! I'm always happy to send extra traffic your way for being so kind!! :)

Happy Monday, love bugs!


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July 25, 2013

Mood Board: Kitchen Renovation

Every single day after work, I am thrilled to get home and see what's been done that day. That's right, this week is the final phase in our kitchen remodel, and I am absolutely loving how it's coming together.

If you can't tell by my beautiful blog design (via Something Charming - LOVE Joelle!), I am in love with yellow.

It's sunny.
It's fresh.
It's cheerful.

So naturally I wanted to find a way to incorporate yellow into our new kitchen without taking away from the gorgeous neutral wall color. We also agreed on adding in tuquoise and green accents for extra dimension.

I want our kitchen, the place where I love spending my time, to feel clean, relaxing, and just plain fun.
Here's a sneak peek of my mood board for our kitchen design...







// What do you think?


I've been taking tons of photos and can't wait to show you the full reveal next week!!


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July 22, 2013

Royal Baby - It's A BOY!!!!


Break out the tea and crumpets! The third in line to the throne has arrived!

That's right, the lovely Duchess gave birth to a healthy baby boy this afternoon and I couldn't be more ecstatic! Was anyone else loving Royal Baby watch?

I wonder what his name will be... any guesses?

For more of my unhealthy obsession with the Royal Family, feel free 
to indulge yourself in my not-so-secret vice here! :)


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PS - Don't forget to link-up and gain new readers ALL WEEK at my Mingle Monday Link-Up!


...

Favorite Things Party - Help Needed!

Hey gal pals...

I need your help! Have you ever participated in a favorite things party?
If so, how many gifts were you asked to bring and what was your price range?


I am wanting to gather up the ladies for a FTP soon and can't decided on the quantity/price! I would love for everyone to get things they LOVE and not a whole bunch of little "junky" things they aren't excited about.

Will you help me out by chiming in below?




Also, what were some cute gift ideas or your personal favorites?


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PS - Don't forget to link-up and gain new readers ALL WEEK at my Mingle Monday Link-Up!

Mingle Monday Link-Up!

If I could switch how we've structured weeks to 5 days of weekend and 2 days of work, I totally would. I mean wow, I can only imagine how better rested and chipper I would be.

Needless to say, I enjoyed a lovely weekend and spent all of Sunday resting.

I hope you all had a fantastic weekend too! A huge thanks to all of you for stopping by to link-up!! I know I say it every week, but every blog added and comment left makes me beam from ear to ear. Love it!!

Let's mingle, shall we?!


 
    

HOW TO MINGLE

 
1) Must be a Life of Meg follower to participate.
 
2) Click on the link below to enter your blog.
 
3) Go visit other blogs saying hello from Mingle Monday!
 
4) Answer the weekly question in the comments section below...
 
 
**  Stranded on an island... what are your top 3 must-have items? **





____________________________________________________________________________________________


// Sponsor Spotlight //


Let me introduce you to a GORGEOUS, ultra-talented photographer, who has a knack for fashion and a flair for creativity. Pretty please stop by real quick to meet Sharaya from Sharaya Mauck Photography.

We first met bubbly Sharaya when we booked her for our engagement/wedding shoots, and absolutely fell in love with her sweet charm and incredible photo skills.

Go visit her blog to catch a sneak peek of our photos!



____________________________________________________________________________________


** ALSO **

Personal blog RTs for your blog on Twitter all day for everyone who tweets about Mingle Monday! I'm always happy to send extra traffic your way for being so kind!! :)


I NEED YOUR HELP!
Been to a Favorite Things Party? I need your advice!


Happy Monday, lovelies!


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July 19, 2013

Weekend Outlook (excuse the rant!)

Just in case you were wondering...

...this is how you will find me this weekend.


// Weekend Outlook //

Friday//  Beating rush hour traffic home. Adam is making beer butt chicken on the grill with some fresh veggies, and then you can find us in our sweats indulging in episode after episode of Friday Night Lights. Oh yeah, wine consumption will be in full swing, which means early bedtime!

Saturday//  I plan to hit up a super intense Zumba class in the morning, or go on a walk with hubs and Beast on our gorgeous route through the neighborhood full of trees. Then we have a marathon all-day wedding (ugh). Ceremony at 1 p.m., reception at 6 p.m. 

Just in case anyone was wondering, we're not fans of the massive 4 hour gap that consumes our entire weekend. Anyone with me? I mean, what do you do? Movie? Go out for drinks? Dress all up and then go home for some quality time with your yoga pants and DVR, to get back in your dress and drive 30 minutes away to the reception? Sigh.

Rant over. 
Good thing we love our friends who are in the same grumpy boat with us! :)

Sunday//  Chillin' with my precious 3rd grade Sunday schoolers, and then cleaning our entire kitchen before the final phase of our kitchen renovation begins on Monday (woop woop!). So pumped to show you  photos next week! Perhaps a dip in the in the pool? Sunday evening will be 5 p.m. church with our posse and then dinner/drinks on our lovely porch listening to tunes.

So stinking ready.

.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.


What are your wild weekend plans? 
Marathon wedding too?

(okay I seriously need an attitude check - ha!)


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July 18, 2013

Cabin Getaway At A Glance

I've been meaning to share some photos from our extended 4th of July vacay down at the family cabin!

Good thing it's July 18th...

Haha! It's okay, I figured photos are fun to see anytime, right?
So enjoy one of our favorite spots in the whole world. We absolutely can't get enough...



Nothing beats a Kansas sunset driving through the flint hills.



Lots of snoozin'.


Beast has no concept of personal space - ha!


Where I sipped on coffee in the morning and did some lazy afternoon reading.


Tank tops and sunglasses were the dress code requirements... obvi.


Bella Beast was supervising the boys' kayak races. A wee bit chilly out there, so the sun felt good!


We sure know how to make it festive for the holiday.


Went to see Despicable Me 2 and wished I would've worn my sister's Halloween costume :)


Margs happened. And then I fould these little surprise photos waiting for me on my camera...
Cheers to blackmail! ;)


My MIL... the marg master!


And then after a stellar 4 days, we loaded up and said bye to our little piece of Kansas heaven.

(and yes, I realized I got zero photos of me or hubs... blogger fail.)


Yup, counting the days 'til we go back!

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PS - Don't forget to link-up and gain new readers ALL WEEK at my Mingle Monday Link-Up!


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