Friday, June 29, 2012

S'more Cookies

*We're leaving today for the beach.  I thought I would re-post some old blog entries while we're away on vacation!  I'll catch up with all of you next week!

I made these cookies yesterday afternoon for my two favorite guys (and grandpa, brother-in-law and nephew)  who are leaving today for a camping weekend.  I got the recipe from a Taste of Home cookbook.  It's the first time I made them and I think they turned out pretty well...I had two of them!

S'more Sandwich Cookies

3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups flour
1-1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups (12oz) semisweet chocolate chips
24 to 28 large marshmallows

In large bowl, cream butter and sugars.  Beat in egg, milk & vanilla.  Combine flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking soda, salt and cinnamon; gradually add to creamed mixture.  Stir in chocolate chips.

Drop by tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheets. ( I used parchment paper)  Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes.  Remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Place four cookies bottom side up on a microwave safe plate; top each with a marshmallow.  Microwave uncovered for 10-15 seconds or until marshmallows begin to puff.  Top each with another cookie.  Repeat.

Makes about 2 dozen

And just for fun...I hid this little guy underneath the cookies in the basket! 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Instagram Love

I don't think I've taken one picture with my real camera yet this summer!  However, I am enjoying Instagram!  It's so fun to take and post pictures.  I've been taking pictures of everything...even bird poop on my windshield. (It was actually one of my better pictures!)  My family is getting a bit tired of me snapping pictures all the time...but whatever.  I love seeing what others are taking pictures of.  Here are just a handful of pics I've taken this summer....




Are you instagram-ing?  (Is that a word?)  If so, I'd love to follow you!   You can find me on instagram @kerriburns

Enjoy your day...and take lots pictures!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


He did it!

First place champion in the boys 12's at the Hempfield Kick off Summer Tournament.

There were only 4 boys that entered the tournament (Brady being the youngest by 2 years), and Brady was seeded #1.  When we told Brady he was picked to win the tournament he said, "well I guess I'll be the winner then!" Oh to be so young and confident!

Brady won his first match 6-0, 6-1. He felt a little bad because he beat one of the boys on his team tennis team in my previous post.
His second match was much closer.  The first set went to a tie break at 6-6.  Brady won the tie 7-0.  He ended up winning 7-6, 6-1.

I went back and read my post on Sept. 18, 2010 when Brady played in his very first USTA tournament.  Since then, he has played in eleven tournaments total.  The tournament before this one he came in 3rd (out of 8) and the tournament before that he came in 2nd.  He has improved so much since that first tournament.

Yesterday was pretty special.  We were so excited for him.  As usual, he handled it with such maturity and never once celebrated his win until we were on our way home. 
People notice Brady all the time and want to know where he learned to play?  I feel most of the credit goes to Brady himself.  Sure, he's had good coaching...but that alone does not make a good player.  A good player is made up of someone who works hard and loves the game.  I'm sure Brady won yesterday because he puts in more time on the court than the next guy.   

I didn't expect him to win any tournaments for another year or so...and who knows maybe it will be that long before he wins another one.  But, his hard work is paying off...and nothing feels better than knowing if you work hard for someting, anything is possible.

Congratulations Brady!

Monday, June 18, 2012

This and That

Brady played on a middle school team tennis league this spring that ended in early June.    Eric put together this group of middle school kids from our school district.  Each team is made up of 3 boys and 3 girls.  They play singles, mixed doubles and boys/girls doubles against other leagues in the area.  Brady played so well...he was undefeated in singles and only lost two doubles matches all season.  They came in 2nd place.  They had a chance to come in 1st place, but on the night of the final, it rained and they didn't get to play.  And because of vacations and such, the season ended without rescheduling the final. 

I have always preferred dark black mulch.  I have never even considered anything else.  Except for when my husband called home from work to see if I wanted almost free mulch that one of the truckers offered him.  I decided it was worth a try....and guess what?!   I like it a lot!  I think it matches really well with our brick.  This makes me think I should be more open minded about other things too!


I made french dip sandwiches yesterday for Eric for Father's Day.  He loved them!  If you were the one who posted the recipe, or you know where it came from, please let me know so I can give credit where credit is due.  This was so quick and easy!

2 cans Campbell's french onion soup
2 tbs. worchestershire sauce
yellow pepper rings
1lb. thin sliced roast beef

Heat soup and sauce on stovetop until boiling.  Add roast beef.  Add mixture to buns.  We topped ours with cheese and yellow pepper rings.  Bake sandwiches in 400 degree oven for 3 minutes.  Serve with remaining dipping sauce.  That's it!

Have yourself a great week!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

My Dad

This is one of my favorite pictures of my dad and I.
I think I was home visiting from college.
I love the way my dad is looking at me.

Even though we have had our share of ups and downs,
I have always felt that my dad is one of my biggest fans.

Happy Father's Day Dad!
I love and miss you!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Little Things

I am convinced that if you want to impress other people women, just make little individual servings.  I don't think it even matters whats in those little containers, as long as everyone has their own.
I put these together for my womens tennis league that I got talked into playing on play on.  The ladies oohhh-ed and ahhhh-ed when they saw my contribution.  I used plastic throw away punch cups and filled them with grapes and strawberries.  That's it.  Easy peasy.
 I often make desserts in these little cups too.  For me, it's not just about the's about having my own and not having to share! 

Have a great day!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

A Few Things About 3rd Grade

There are a few things I'd like to remember about this school year....and then we can move on to summer.  Please don't feel the need to comment.  I'm mostly writing this post for Brady.  I know if I don't write it down, we will forget...and I want him to be able to look back on this post someday and remember some of the things that made the 3rd grade special.

Almost every morning before school we played catch in the driveway.  This was a great motivator in getting you ready and out the door in the morning.  You even told me once that it was "our" thing.  I loved it too.

This was the first year of school that you did all of your homework on your own...without me standing over you and checking your work.  I feel like you appreciated this space and took more pride in your work. 

You were a friend to someone in  your class that really needed a friend.  You didn't care what your classmates thought about this.  Dad and I continue to be amazed by your compassion and empathy for others.

And, because of the way you treat others in your classroom, you were nominated for Student of the Month.  You were so excited about getting this award, and wore your medal to school with pride.  You deserved it Brady.  You're a good friend.

You shot baskets everyday at recess and waited weeks to find out if you were picked to be a captain for the intramurals team.  When you found out you were chosen, you made up a schedule so that everyone on  your team would get equal playing time.  When picking teams, you chose first the boy who was likely to be picked last.

You were so excited to learn cursive this year.  Your only below average mark on your grade card in the last few years has been handwriting.  This last grading period YOU set a goal to improve in this area ...and halfway through you received a note from your teacher saying he had noticed a difference and to keep up the hard work.  You were rewarded on your grade card for this improvement.

You came to me one morning before school with a bag of silver change you had collected and said you wanted to give it to the cafeteria lady for a boy in your class who was not getting a proper lunch.  You wanted him to have what everyone else was having.  I cried when you left for school that day with your bag of change. ( I think the cafeteria lady cried too.)  YOU made a difference and YOU inspired dad and I to make a difference too.

You only missed 3 days of school this year and received a perfect attendance certificate for the last grading period.  You were so proud of this award, because it was a goal of yours to miss less days this year than any of your previous years.  It was your personal best by a long shot!

A few last things about 3rd grade.....

 You mastered time tables almost overnight and got 100% on almost every spelling test this year.  You were the go to guy if anyone needed help cleaning out their desk during recess time.  You were paired with a senior (who happened to be on the boys tennis team!) to put together a book via skype on the computer.  You were excited to compete in the fitness challenge and came in 2nd place,  and you were asked by the phys. ed teacher to be a part of a tennis instruction video to be used as a teaching tool for 3rd, 4th and 5th grades.  Boy was she suprised to see how you play!

That pretty much sums up 3rd grade.  It was a great year for you.  I think one of the biggest things you gained this year was CONFIDENCE.  Dad and I are so proud of you.  I think if you always take pride in the work that you do, set goals, and are a kind person, you will continue to do well in school.

Love you tons,

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Last Day Of School!

We did simple gifts this year. Lemon glazed cookies for the bus driver and a hockey tumbler for Brady's teacher. It was Brady's idea to give the's what he gave to his teacher last year. He's such a creature of habit. He also wrote his teacher a nice letter all on his own. I wish I would have taken a picture so I could have remembered his was a touching note.

My emotions were all over the place yesterday. I think my husband thinks there's something wrong with me!  I was so excited this morning that today was the last day of school. Isn't that the best feeling for a kid...and maybe a mom?! Well, Brady didn't seem any different this morning than he is any other morning before school. I'm sure he was excited in his own way...just not the way I wanted him to show it. Later, I cried all the way to the grocery store. The last day of school always gets me...even more than the first day of school. I think it's just the ending of one year and what that means...mixed in with the excitement of summer. It's been a great school year for Brady...maybe his best and a little part of me is sad to see it end. Brady did come home with good news though....he will have Mr. B again next year! No, he isn't being held back! Mr. B is moving up to 4th grade! 

We suprised Brady after school with two new Roger Federer raquets.  (Thank-you Erin!)  We hid the video camera to get his reaction.  If I can figure out how to download it, I will post it.  He was so suprised and almost speechless!  He's been asking for once since Federer came out with a new one right after Christmas.  He was planning to do extra chores this summer and figured by July he would have enough money.  I feel the need to say that I've never been in favor of giving money or rewards for good grades.  We don't do that.  We do praise Brady for always doing his best and for giving 100% when it comes to school.  He worked hard all year and we're so proud of him. Although Brady gets great grades...we've always told him that grades aren't as important to us as the effort he puts forth into learning.  This little suprise was just something we wanted to do for him.   BTW, I spent all morning making chocolate chip cookies, and he has yet to have one!  He's been too busy breaking in that new raquet.  He was out hitting on the garage at 7:30 this morning! 

Eric and Brady just left a bit ago to go camping for a few days.
I have a long list of things I hope to do while they're away...but first, I think I'll walk around Target! ;)

Monday, June 4, 2012

The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies I've Ever Made

I have tried so many different chocolate chip cookie recipes in the sixteen years that my husband and I have been together.  He loves them...and I've never been good at making them.  Most of the cookies I make need to be eaten within 3 minutes of coming out of the oven or you might risk breaking a tooth!  But hopefully for my family, those days are behind us!

Last Thursday after school Brady asked if I could make his teacher chocolate chip cookies for the following day.  (I hate when he doesn't give me any notice!)   I had remembered seeing a cookie recipe on a blog the day before, so I quickly printed it out.  After a long day and walking in the door at 8:15pm that evening, my dear husband offered to help me make those cookies. 

 They turned out big and soft and were just the right amount of crispy on the edges and soooo good!

You can find the recipe HERE on Tessa's blog.

This will definitely be my go to chocolate chip cookie from now on!
I might just make them again on Wednesday to celebrate the last day of school!

2 more days to go...we are excited!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

BLT Pasta


I was flipping through a Woman's Day magazine at the doctor's office a couple days ago and came across this recipe.  I wanted to take a picture of the page so I would have the recipe, but the doctor came in and I put the magazine down.  I improvised on the amounts of indredients and it was so yummy.

BLT Salad

rigatoni pasta
red onion
olive oil
cherry tomatoes
salt & pepper
(parmesan cheese)

Make the pasta and set aside.  Cook bacon and then add red onion to the same pan.  Once the bacon and red onion are cooked, add the cherry tomatoes, arugala & a few tablespoons of olive oil.  Stir until heated through...maybe 5 minutes.  Add to your drained pasta and heat for another 5 minutes.  We topped our dish with grated parmesan cheese. 

So fresh and summery!
I'm looking forward to the leftovers later today!

*Ps. I was at the doctor because I have poison ivy on my cheek and near my eye.  It's lovely. :)
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