The Grandmothers Are Coming

They’re flying in tonight.

Grandma from Illinois and Granny from Texas.

A very rare occurrence here at the Humpfreeze house.

The tween is counting the days until she becomes a teen.

A giant challenge to get the three twenties’ schedules coordinated so we could spend one day together. College exams are coming, drill weekend, alumni activities in the cadet world.

They are going to get the big reveals of several of our DIY house projects.

The Big Basement Move

The Pumpkin had occupied his upstairs bedroom since he was 18 months old.

The now 22 year-old games online with a headset and can often be heard shouting things like, “STOP. AROUND THE CORNER. SHOOT.” at 3:00 a.m. {insert muffled, deep man voice here}

It was time for some quiet for us.

Since he is in college full-time and has a part-time job, we let him stay. We are afraid he is going to take one class at a time so he never has to graduate.

His 21 year-old carpet had far exceeded its expiration date by at least a decade.

But the 110 gallon aquarium was a sore point when we discussed dismantling it.

I finally convinced PhilBillPaul that one giant tank on the main floor was enough.

Enlisted help to drain the tank.

And transport very old fish to the fish store. Tank sold on craigslist in one day.

PhilBillPaul got to work patching and priming the dark red walls.

The help did not want to be photographed.

Nothing like a freshly painted room.

And he worked so hard putting in the leftover laminate flooring from Scary Baby’s room makeover.

The Grunter had a big job in cleaning up the basement…

…that may have turned into a giant storage room in the past two years.

With the help of his very good friend Jason, in one afternoon, they got everything cleaned up.

His new bachelor pad has shaped up.

I could do without the movie posters.

Then again, I’m just glad he’s not upstairs yelling SHOOT.

Stipulation that when Grandma or Granny comes, he must clean his basement man cave and sleep upstairs so our guests can have some privacy.

We’re still finishing his former room and I’ll share pictures when we get it done. Love it so far!

Of course, the kitchen is still not done so those pictures may not show up until 2013. Seems the older we get, the slower we go.

On an unrelated note, the grandmas have missed the azaleas blooming.

Luckily, Scary Baby had her annual photo shoot.

This darn crazy weather.

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Cupcakes & Horses

I’ve read in several places that a blogger should take time to write good headlines. Seems it can help your SEO and Google ranking and what not.

Pretty sure no one will be searching for cupcakes and horses but it is the first thing that came to mind when I sat down at my laptop to write this.

The cupcakes and horses are actually unrelated except for the fact that I wanted to share pictures from Easter weekend and Easter weekend seemed like a really lame headline since I’m writing about it a week later.

I know you like to get a glimpse of the inner workings of my mind.

Horses

Friday night that sweet sister Roger Leroy came to the house and picked up Scary Baby and took her up to her college dorm to spend the night.

A twelve year-old’s dream. She might have changed outfits 3 times before her sister arrived.

I reminded her she wasn’t going to any college parties.

Ahem.

Instead, her sweet sissy was taking her horseback riding.

This is a HUGE deal because she has had this obsession idea since Thanksgiving and is relentless about not letting an idea go until one of the Humpfreeze family members gives in to silence her begging.

Does she look excited? I love that she accessorized with a scarf.

She said she was eight feet in the air.

The trail ride was in the beautiful North Georgia mountains.

Parts of the trail up the mountain were very narrow. I heard it was a bit challenging to snap pictures from the saddle.

Apparently, Meadows’ horse had some personality and she had to pull over to adjust her saddle.

And Rachel’s horse had no personality and was a bit of a slacker in keeping up with the group. Our speed demon circus baby is not familiar with coming in last.

Thank you Roger Leroy. From the bottom of our hearts.

Cupcakes

I cooked my heart out for Easter this year. The twenties and the tween each invited a guest so we were feeding ten.

Cooking all day on Saturday so we could enjoy a meal together was my plan.

Our menu included a marginal Costco ham but the side dishes made up for it.

If you haven’t made Pioneer Woman’s Au Gratin potatoes yet, do so immediately. Your family will thank you.

PhilBillPaul said the macaroni and cheese was the best ever. Big compliment because I’ve always made fabulous mac & cheese. I tried a new recipe that I’ve had for years but just got around to trying. It’s a keeper.

Love that you don’t have to make a roux or melt all the cheese. My changes to the recipe: I used muenster and mozzarella in the pot with the noodles and then topped it with shredded cheddar before baking. I omitted the onions and added a little onion salt. Loved the dry mustard, nutmeg, cayenne and Worcestershire sauce. Yum!

Mose-e-ack jello a.k.a. mosaic jello was a special surprise for Roger Leroy. My little thank you for taking Scary Baby horseback riding.

I did manage to snap a quick picture of the Easter treats. I even whipped up little cellophane bags for the guests.

Don’t worry, that concludes any attempts at craftiness from me for the year.

Obviously, I failed in Easter picture taking this year since I didn’t take any pictures of the people. But I think I passed in the cooking category.

It might be because I have cut way, way back on sugar and the idea of making TWO desserts made me dizzy.

Or not.

Just know that in addition to making my absolute favorite and perfect lemon cake, I made the best cupcakes I have ever made or eaten.

Please admire the white, wrinkled sheet we used as a tablecloth.

Fan-cee is how we roll.

Special thanks to My Baking Addiction for the Chocolate Malt Cupcakes recipe inspiration on Friday night.

The cupcake recipe is very close to our favorite doctored up cake mix recipe which is the one I used. One subtraction: I left out the espresso granules. One addition: 2 cups of chocolate chips.

The buttercream frosting is so freaking good that we are still talking about it this week and I’m making them again on Wednesday. One change on frosting recipe is that I used 1/3 cup of regular baking cocoa and 1/3 cup of Hershey’s® Special Dark cocoa…only because I ran out of regular baking cocoa. Pretty sure it will be sublime with what ever cocoa you use. Maybe it’s the 4 sticks of butter and/or the 5 minutes of beating.

I recommended them to my friend Leigh Anne and suggested she might just want to make the frosting. No cupcake necessary.

But if you want something to hold the frosting other than a bowl, go ahead and make the cupcake too.

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The Twenties

One lives in the basement.

Two live away from home.

“All three are in college full-time and have part-time jobs.”

My personal one-liner when I start stressing about any one of them or all three at once.

Yet, parenting does not get easier.

In case you haven’t experienced the twenties thus far…

Yes, we enjoy a quieter house.

We miss them but not their messes.

We worry as they go on spring break to the beach.

In a large group.

We’re glad when they come back safely.

But the cycle of worry starts anew…

When one sends this picture via cell phone…

Side note: She was following this vehicle but wasn’t in it.

And the other one comes home to get this…

This part passed way too fast…

Three years ago I told them, “You’re Gonna Miss This”

I don’t think they do yet.

But I do.

Moms, what age do you miss the most?

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Basketball Groupies

Indiana basketball is alive and well here at the Humpfreeze house.

Even if Indiana lost on Friday night to Kentucky.

The loss did not take the shine off Roger Leroy’s meeting with a few basketball players she and her friends *chased* down during a Hawks game last Thursday night.

She emailed us this picture…

Who knew those three North Georgia cadet students would look so tiny compared to these strapping Indiana University basketball students?

When some of the players didn’t acknowledge them, Will Sheehey (he’s the middle guy) turned around and talked to them and they graciously agreed to this photo op.

My good friend, Google, revealed that Will has a twin named Elizabeth.

Shut up.

If they had only had time to talk, she could have at least invited him over for dinner. 😉

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Disaster Preparedness At Our House

Storms and tornado warnings throughout Georgia sent us to our basement on Friday.

Several times.

My short list of what to grab when you don’t have much time:

Flashlights, prescriptions, cash, cell phone, camera and my laptop.

PhilBillPaul grabbed candles, matches and water bottles.

Scary Baby grabbed 2 stuffed animals, her favorite boots and moisturizing lotion.

I didn’t ask. Nor did I know this until I unpacked the bag the next day.

The Grunter “was forced” to move to the basement in January so he did nothing. (Story for another day.) Except become irritated when we invaded “his” space.

Once we gathered together for our safety, Scary Baby and The Grunter were ready.

Disclaimer: I did suggest the motorcycle helmets since we don’t have 4 bicycle helmets. I will concede the girlfriends motorcycles in the garage have come in handy for ONE thing. I have some legitimate fears about head injury. Go figure.

Thankfully, our area suffered no damage. Other areas were devastated by this latest round of tornadoes. I hope you and your family are all safe.

In other disaster-related news, my websites were down for over a week. Apologies if you got the scary red screen from Google. Can we all agree that hacking as a hobby is one of the most senseless, useless and annoying hobbies to date?

All is well again. How are things with you?

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Superbowl Traditions & Our Weekend

Traditions can change.

Sometimes by choice.

Other times by circumstances.

We’re at that stage at the Humpfreeze house.

We are old enough to be empty nesters.

Yet, after being a family of six, we find ourselves with an only child.

An only child who has three twenties who come and visit.

The Grunter still lives here and commutes to college downtown and works so we don’t see him very much.

On the rare evening when all four of our lovelies have graced us with their presence on the same night, they are thrilled when I squeal for everyone to stand still so I can quickly try to capture a photo of this fleeting moment.


Obviously, we’re past the stage of wearing color-coordinated or matching {gasp} clothes for a photo shoot.

Boy, oh boy, have my standards changed. Note the gorgeous backdrop of our filthy garage.

Look at the cooperation in their faces when I asked that they stand in birth order.

It’s hard to choose which one to frame and hang in the foyer.

Like I said, traditions change.

Superbowl Sunday

Scary Baby’s only child status can make some of our old family traditions a little bit lonely.

The twenties all had places to be, people to see, so we were home with our new only child.

No squirt cheese in a can for Roger Leroy. Everyone didn’t pick their favorite junk food for mom to make.

Instead, we opted for Chili’s chicken nachos and chips and queso.

But we did have our knox blox in team colors.

I’ve been told some traditions can’t be changed.

That’s why I still put a wrinkled, white sheet on the coffee table so Scary Baby could eat on the floor in the family room. Very traditional.

We sent Roger Leroy back up to college with half of the knox blox and toothpicks and pennants.

She rewarded me with this sad little camera phone picture to confirm the darling twins did carry on the tradition.

Really, we’re all okay here. Scary Baby is every bit as much work, if not more, than the first three darlings we have sent into the world.

We hope we will not be too old and tired to enjoy the bored and quiet when it finally comes.

Saturday Night

Going backwards about our lovely weekend with the twenties…

Roger Leroy came home to work on her motorcycle. No comment.

Wizzy came home because she kindly coaches Scary Baby’s basketball team at church.

I continue to forget to take pictures during the games. Bad mother habits are hard to break.

It was fun to sit with Roger Leroy and while she got to be a spectator watching her little sister play and her twin coach the game. They won.

It was a special treat to take the twenties to dinner while Scary Baby spent the night at a friends. After an hour of bickering about what restaurant we would eat at because…

The Grunter doesn’t eat pasta.

Wizzy doesn’t like Mexican.

Roger Leroy will not go more than 5 miles for food.

We ended up in a smoky bar and watched some very interesting people.

We laughed a lot. The food was decent.

We really wanted to stay for the band but we just couldn’t hang in the smoke-filled bar.

It was a wild Saturday night. Not.

PhilBillPaul and I do our best to seize the moments when they are available and will have a meal with their old parents.

Side note: We know it’s because we’re buying.

Superbowl recap:

  • We were all rooting for the Giants so it was a great game.
  • Except for Madonna at halftime. Enough said.
  • I was all ready to vote for Clint Eastwood for President…until I realized his moving words were part of a Chrysler commercial.
  • Still love those monkeys in the careerbuilder.com ad.
  • Second favorite commercial – Jerry Seinfeld for Acura was much better than the vampire party for Audi or the ridiculous Fiat commercial which is why we muted commercials for so many years and the Humpfreeze children only watched PBS

Tradition I miss the most…

Keeping them all in my bubble.

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A Few of My Favorite Things

I’m pretty sure I blinked and December was over.

It was certainly not my intent to blog just one puny time in December.

We’re all fine, fine, fine here in Georgia.

When I don’t blog it does not necessarily mean that bad things are happening at the Humpfreeze house or I have taken extra medication to get through the holidays.

In fact, December was medication-free and it was a very good month! It just went by entirely too fast.

I’d like to tell you it is because I’m busier than the rest of the universe. Especially in December.

But that would start my new year off with a big lie.

Instead, I decided to share a few of my favorite things from our Humpfreeze holidays where all six of us gathered in our house together for almost the whole month and we have all lived to tell about it.

For those of you who might not remember, that means 2 adults, 3 semi-adults (the “twenties” people) and one tween all lived under one roof.

At. The. Same. Time.

We squeezed in the baking frenzy for the teachers and grandmas. PhilBillPaul made 3 kinds of fudge, pecans and pretzels. Then I got busy with bread and cookies. Scary Baby helped wrap and organize her 5 teacher gifts.

Guess we forgot to take pictures of the cute packaging and gift tags this year.

Plus random photo of small Charlie Brown-like blue Christmas tree in Scary Baby bedroom. She loves it.

And one darling twin and a friend (hi Rowe!) helped with the packaging until 2:00 a.m.

Perhaps she helped (for the first time ever) because she wanted to send a giant care package to a soldier friend in Afghanistan.

That’s a pretty good ulterior motive in my book and I appreciated their help!

I traveled at the beginning of the month and when I came home, Scary Baby had done a superb job of trimming the tree that she and PhilBillPaul picked out at Costco from the Marines selling trees there this year.

It’s not Christmas until we take at least a few of the kids to Waffle House. We like to reminisce about the year we drove to Illinois for Christmas and Waffle House was the only place open so we had to eat there 3 times in 24 hours with three toddlers in tow. Super fun!

On Christmas Eve we stuck to our regular traditions…

A special thank you to Mr. Humpfreeze who took it upon himself to get almost everything ready for fondue. I only had to make the breakfast casserole and cheesy potatoes for the next morning.

Never happened before. Very nice. Think it should be a new tradition!

Opening one gift on Christmas Eve

Please take note of how dressed up my darling children get for Christmas Eve. It appears some of them are in pajamas opening pajamas.

They are always *shocked* that the gift is new pajamas. Correction – it is fuzzy sleep pants and t-shirts that don’t match because wearing a matching set of pajamas is very uncool.

We played a few games.

Then another darling twin actually helped me wrap. And announced,

“I’m tired of wrapping.”

To which I replied,

“Imagine that I’ve been doing this all by myself for the 4 of you for 20+ years.”

I liked the help. Another new tradition to add for next year.

Christmas Morning

Bad cell phone picture of sweet daughters keeping warm and sleeping a little more with their daddy while trying to convince Everett to get up.

This almost became our first Christmas where we weren’t all together on Christmas morning because Everett had to work at 7:00 a.m. Luckily, his shift changed at the last minute so he came down in his uniform and opened his gifts.

Our pumpkin has worked on Christmas day for the last six years. Remember to thank those people who go to work so you can see a movie or get gas on Christmas day.

My favorite Christmas gift…

My favorite Christmas gift I gave Scary Baby…

I ordered this print after seeing it many months ago online and being on a wait list for the next printing. I think it should follow her all the way to her college dorm room to remind her how much we love her. 😉

During the holiday break, the darling twins took their darling little sister ice skating. Tiny cell phone picture not available.

PhilBillPaul and I also took Scary Baby and a friend to a movie.

War Horse ~ worth seeing but…the horses are quite large when you are sitting in the SECOND ROW of a very crowded, small theater.

This picture taken with my cell phone really doesn’t do justice to the view. No extra charge for neck strain. Or the bonus 4 year-old who joins your family to watch the movie with you talk to you during the movie. Repeatedly. His family didn’t seem to mind him walking down the row as he hopped from seat to seat.

This future blog topic on movie etiquette will be followed by a discussion on why I’ve become a recluse and no longer engage in public outings in small places and why people bring young children to 2-1/2 hour movies they are not suited for.

New Year’s Eve

Ours was wild.

Or not.

The darling twins went up to North Georgia for their own party. Everett and 3 friends came to hang out after a movie.

We went to the store because I declared “no more cooking!”

Frozen cream puffs for Scary Baby – her personal favorite. Store bought cookies and cupcakes. Leftover candy and fudge. Paper plates and plastic silverware. Frozen pigs in a blanket. Tablecloth? Nah, we were washing the sheet we had used at Christmas. Don’t judge.

Potato chips, dip, cheese, crackers – super fancy.

Scary Baby couldn’t wait to open the sparkling grape juice.

She washed a champagne flute she found that I had purchased at Target years ago. Clearance price tag on it said .62¢

We squeezed in a game of Bananagrams.

And toasted in the new year…

Happy New Year!

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and spent it with your favorite people…

More fun stuff to share but first, I have to try to figure out a manageable blog schedule for 2012.

Until then, please do tell how you spent the holidays and what you’re looking forward to in the new year!

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Back From North Carolina

I’d like to tell you we were gone for two weeks without internet since that’s how long it’s been since I’ve blogged.

But that would be a lie.

I guess it took me a week to prepare to go to North Carolina.

Or not.

Mostly, November has flown by in a blur.

Granny flew in from Texas the week before Thanksgiving and we headed to a cabin on the Saturday before Thanksgiving.

Here’s a pictorial from our week in Murphy, North Carolina…

Though not very high up in the mountains, the cabin was off the beaten path and lovely.

We were in a small cabin “neighborhood” of 17 cabins or chalets. Some people refer to them as luxury cabins or homes. I guess this is because some people’s definition of a cabin is a cement floor and an outhouse down the mountain by the creek where you draw some ice cold water to bathe in.

We have personally grown fond of a few more amenities and I’m not too proud to admit that. I’m all about running water, electricity and leather furniture. 😉

We arrived in shifts on different days since the college kids still had classes and two of them had to work. I heard too late that the basement bedroom had the best bed.

The Grunter and I arrived on Sunday and Scary Baby immediately challenged us to a game of pool. She and Granny and PhilBillPaul had already been shopping in town which is where she scored the sock monkey hat that she did not take off during the entire week. (Except to shower – I confirmed this.)

The dog boys were very excited to accompany us on vacation and enjoyed many walks up and down some rolling hills. It was excellent physical therapy for Dudley.

The darling twins arrived next and the dogs are always excited to see them.

The dogs haven’t had this much attention in a very long time.

We also ventured out for some scenic driving and Scary Baby was excited to see wildlife a chicken from our car.

It got more exciting when she squealed, “Are those cows loose in the road up there?”

Yes. The cows were obviously loose as I jumped out to snap photos just like city slickers do when they see cows in the road.

The Grunter said he didn’t want to go on a 4 hour scenic car ride. This is what he and his sister were doing just before the cow sighting.

Luckily, they were not asleep when we drove to Blue Ridge, Georgia in search of this cupcake shop.

Minutes before they closed, we snagged some of their very last cupcakes to bring back to the cabin. Four chocolate lava fudge (one might be missing), one apple caramel and one pecan pie cupcake. The Sweet Shoppe lived up to its name.

Of course we played euchre every single day. PhilBillPaul gets a little obsessed with it.

Sabu was there to help him. Not that he needs it because he is the Euchre King.

Dudley was not left out.

Side note: Notice Wizzy’s cell phone. It was almost a technology-free holiday. NO internet but if they stood in certain places they could still text and sometimes make calls.

Rachel bought a puzzle and introduced Scary Baby to her new obsession which is gluing the puzzle together after they complete it.

All in all, it was a good week away and in spite of some very loud bickering and competitive game playing, I do love when we are all together and I see the college kids becoming semi-adults.

When we are not fighting and talking ugly to one another, we laugh a lot.

I choose to remember the laughing.

Black Friday at Walmart which was really at 10:00 pm on Thursday was another adventure for the memory book. Sorry, no photos and my bruise is almost gone from some really aggressive pillow grabbing for Elizabeth while she scored a king-sized memory foam mattress top for us.

My favorite photo from the week…

Look, she took the sock monkey hat off in this one unstaged photo that PhilBillPaul captured.

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving together. Thanks Granny, for enduring the Georgia Humpfreeze clan and spending time with us!

How did you spend your Thanksgiving? I hope you all spent time with the ones you love…

P.S. Should you ever want to explore Murphy, North Carolina, we’ve got the beat on a very affordable cabin and Granny gets a referral so just ask me for the info!

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A Perfect Saturday

We had a quiet weekend at home.

WHAT?

Shhh.

Yes, it’s really true. A quiet weekend at home.

Such a rare and strange thing for us.

Saturday was pretty much a perfect day.

I almost forgot what we were suppose to do.

Luckily, I remembered…

  • Sleep in.
  • Not run errands.
  • Not drive anyone anywhere.
  • Make omelettes for lunch.
  • Have The Grunter join us at lunch after he worked an early shift
  • Bake chocolate chip cookies.
  • Make little bags of cookies for the college girls.
  • Watch Amazing Race with Scary Baby.
  • Wait for the soldier daughters to be released from their weekend drill.
  • Have dinner with darling daughters and a few of their college friends.

They actually planned this and invited us to dine with them.

Watch PhilBillPaul traumatize his darling Roger Leroy by playing a home movie for her friends.

It is a highlight tape of some of her best comedy from her middle school years that Scary Baby had enjoyed watching a few weeks ago.

Someday I’m sure she will let me post a portion of the video here on the blog.

I don’t think she’s ready for that yet.

This is the 2nd time he has done this.

The first time her brother had to hold her down.

The second time she and PhilBillPaul wrestled to the floor. Then her friend Ashleigh sat on her so everyone could watch the video.

I think everyone will agree she is very strong.

And funny.

Please come home again to visit – we really do love you, Rachel.

Dad says he is sorry.

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Throwdown

We have loved our Chocolate Chip Malted Cookie recipe that we’ve been making for years and years taken from Taste of Home.

But I’ve stopped using Crisco almost completely and that recipe calls for butter-flavored Crisco. I banned margarine from the house about 5 years ago. It’s all butter in my baking now. Look at these healthy strides I’m making.

Let’s discuss the evils of white sugar another time, okay? I want to stay focused. This is about our new favorite cookie.

The recipe inspiration is from one that was seen around blogland in several places and you can check out the original recipe on The New York Times from 2008.

I’ve made them 3 times now and with some personal tweaking, they are now at the top of our favorites list!

The things we think elevate these to our new favorites:

  • Two kinds of flour ~ cake flour and bread flour
  • Coarse salt
  • Creaming the butter and sugar for 5 minutes
  • Three kinds of chocolate chips
  • Refrigerate dough over night before baking
  • Sprinkling with sea salt before baking

Scary Baby graciously allowed me to photograph her first cookie tasting.

Wizzy wasn’t quite as dramatic.

We love, love, love these cookies. They are fat and chewy and lightly crisp at the edges. The texture is exactly what I want in a cookie and I think the combination of two flours and refrigerating overnight are the keys to this perfect cookie!

Triple Chocolate Chip Malt Cookies

2 cups minus 2 tablespoons cake flour
1 2/3 cups bread flour
1/2 cup malted milk powder
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
1 1/4 cups unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups dark brown sugar (can use light but we like dark)
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups chocolate chips – mix a combination of dark, semi-sweet and milk chocolate chips

Optional add-ins: You can also add in 1 cup of broken pretzel sticks and/or 1 cup of caramel bits which turn them into another delicious cookie!

Mix flours, malted milk powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Set aside. Cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Mix in chocolate chips.

Press plastic wrap against dough and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. Dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours or frozen.*

To bake:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. Use small cookie scoop (or large if you want giant cookies and bake a few minutes longer) and place on cookie sheet. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake until golden brown but still soft, 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then slip cookies onto another rack to cool a bit more.

Side note: The sea salt is optional. The Grunter and I love it. The others are lukewarm about it. The malted milk powder is also optional but we think it adds another subtle layer of flavor that we love. You decide.

*Frozen Cookie Dough Has Changed My Life

Don’t laugh at that. I have frozen cookie dough for years. Usually at holiday baking frenzy time.

What changed my life about freezing it is to scoop out the cookies and freeze into individual cookie balls first and putting in ziploc freezer bag.

Duh.

Shut up. I’m slow but when I learn something worth sharing, I share!

The prep time is totally worth it. Having bags in the freezer with cookie dough is great for all of us.

Baking just a dozen hot, fresh, homemade cookies after dinner is perfect. Really, is there a bad time to bake a dozen cookies?

Recipe inspiration came from a variety of sources. Look how this blog inspiration circle of life thing works:

My Baking Addiction inspired me to try the New York Times cookies AND led me to…
Goodlife Eats who taught me how to freeze cookie dough the right way and…
Leigh Anne inspired me to add pretzels and caramels to a batch of dough because she was inspired by…
The Diary of Dave’s Wife even though we all used different chocolate chip cookie base recipes.

Let me know if you make them. Or share your recipe if you have one that rivals this one.

These are the ones I put in the college care packages and I didn’t hear any complaints except from my family who squealed “Don’t send them all to other people!”

Which is why I’ve made two more batches.

And now I’m on to my pumpkin obsession…

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