Valentine’s Day Strawberry Nutella Pancakes

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I can’t believe Valentine’s Day is this Sunday! The past few months have been a blur since the baby was born… I’m still having trouble believing it’s 2016, much less February, and almost Valentine’s Day. About the extent of my husband and I celebrating “our love” revolves around food! To us, Valentine’s Day is just another excuse to eat a really good meal, and maybe exchange a card.

Today, I have a really fun Valentine’s Day breakfast recipe for you all. I am ADDICTED to Nutella, especially when it is paired with strawberries. Layer Nutella and thin sliced heart shaped strawberries on a super thin pancake and I’m in love. Serve this pancake either rolled up and sealed with a heart shaped sprinkle, or folded as a breakfast taco.

Valentine’s Day Strawberry Nutella Pancakes

Valentine’s Day Strawberry Nutella Pancakes

Ingredients

  • 6 thin pancakes (basic pancake mix)
  • 3 strawberries, tops removed and thin sliced
  • 1/2 cup Nutella
  • 6 large heart shaped sprinkles
  • 1 tablespoon confectioner's sugar

Instructions

  1. While each pancake is warm, let it cool on a rolling pin so that it is flexible.
  2. Spread a layer of Nutella on each and top with a few sliced strawberries.
  3. Fold pancake in half for a taco shape, or roll and seal with a dot of Nutella and a heart sprinkle for a Nutella rollup. Garnish with a sprinkle of confectioner's sugar.
http://www.fabfatale.com/2016/02/valentines-day-nutella-pancakes-recipe/

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Do you all indulge in a fun Valentine’s Day breakfast recipe? If so, I hope you’ll share below.

Homemade Monkey Bread

homemade monkey bread recipe from scratch - cinnamon roll bites pull apart bread #breakfast #brunch

homemade monkey bread recipe from scratch - cinnamon roll bites pull apart bread #breakfast #brunch

Life is starting to feel normal again! Just a little bit. My two year old keeps me busy and has discovered his “personality”, whew! My little baby is colicky, but starting to get better. We’re still not sleeping at all, but I’m finally starting to get out and about a bit more, and finding myself in the kitchen, my happy place, every chance I get!

I have seen homemade monkey bread recipes all over Pinterest, also known as cinnamon roll bites, and always wanted to try one. I’m not sure why it took forever to dawn on me that I should just go for it. I see several that are made from refrigerated biscuit dough, but I really wanted to try one from scratch. This monkey bread recipe starts with a packet of yeast and after it rises, you make fun little dough balls dipped in cinnamon sugar, topped in a caramel glaze, baked to perfection in a bundt cake pan, and then smothered in a vanilla frosting. It’s the perfect pull apart bread to feed and impress a crowd.

Homemade Monkey Bread

Ingredients

    Dough
  • 1 package (2 and 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast (recommended: Red Star Platinum)
  • 1/4 cup warm water (110F-115F)
  • 1 and 1/4 cups warm 2% milk (110F-115F, 2% or higher milk fat, no lower)
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour (measured correctly)
  • Coating
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 and 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Vanilla Glaze
  • 1 cup (120g) confectioners' sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons (45ml) heavy cream (or milk for a less creamy texture)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Make the dough: In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Stir it around a bit and let it sit for about 2 minutes. Add the milk, melted butter, sugar, eggs, salt, and 3 cups of flour. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes (using a dough hook if you have a stand mixer or using a hand mixer). By hand add enough remaining flour to form a firm dough. About 5 cups total.
  2. Turn the dough onto a floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Do not over-knead, which will yield a tough, chewy bread. The dough is ready when it is smooth and when you can poke it with a finger and it springs back. Form dough into a smooth ball and place into a large greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. I greased the bowl with cooking spray. Cover tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.
  3. Make the coating: melt 1/2 cup of butter in a small bowl. Mix granulated sugar and cinnamon together in another small bowl. Set aside. You will use the rest of the butter, brown sugar, and vanilla later.
  4. Spray a 10-12 cup bundt pan with cooking spray. Set aside. Punch the cold dough down very gently to allow the air bubbles to release. Pull apart pieces and roll into balls, about 1.25 inches in diameter. You will need 40-45 balls total, so be modest with their size. Dip each ball, one by one, in the melted butter and then generously roll in the cinnamon-sugar mixture to coat them. You may need more cinnamon-sugar depending how heavy you coat each ball. Arrange them in the bundt pan as you go. If you did not use Red Star Platinum yeast, cover the pan and allow dough balls to rise again for about 45 minutes at room temperature. If you did use Red Star Platinum yeast, move ahead to the next step and bake right away.
  5. Preheat oven to 350F. Melt the remaining 1/4 cup of butter and whisk in the brown sugar and vanilla until combined. Pour the buttery mixture over the dough balls in the bundt pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown on top. Cover loosely with foil if the top browns too quickly. Cool for 5-10 minutes and invert onto a large serving plate.
  6. Make the glaze: Simply whisk all of the glaze ingredients together and pour over the bread. You may either cut the bread into generous slices or let everyone pick off the gooey pieces themselves.
  7. Monkey bread tastes best served on the same day, but will stay fresh for 3 days if stored covered at room temperature or in the refrigerator.
  8. Make ahead tip: This recipe is designed to be made ahead! In step 2, you'll see that the dough needs to rise for at least 8 hours or overnight.
http://www.fabfatale.com/2016/02/homemade-monkey-bread-recipe/

homemade monkey bread recipe from scratch - cinnamon roll bites pull apart bread #breakfast #brunch

homemade monkey bread recipe from scratch - cinnamon roll bites pull apart bread #breakfast #brunch

homemade monkey bread recipe from scratch - cinnamon roll bites pull apart bread #breakfast #brunch

homemade monkey bread recipe from scratch - cinnamon roll bites pull apart bread #breakfast #brunch

homemade monkey bread recipe from scratch - cinnamon roll bites pull apart bread #breakfast #brunch

homemade monkey bread recipe – sally’s baking addiction

What brunch recipe do you cook up to impress a small gathering?

Current Situation – In Need Of A Mommy Makeover

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I have been in maternity leave mode for almost 3 months now, carrying around a newborn while chasing a very active two-year-old. Sleep is at a minimum around here, and there is no time to spend on hair and make up these days. I’m getting ready to go back to work soon, and I’d love to do a few things to help feel better about myself. Any “makeover efforts” will have to be at-home due to lack of time and affordable since our budget just got a little tighter with a second child.

A few things on my wish list include dying my roots, an at home tan for a little color, and whitening my teeth. I’m going for the latter first since it’s the easiest process and I thrive on “easy” these days. I’ve been a big fan of Crest 3D toothpaste for months now, and have used Crest Whitestrips for years. I was thrilled when Crest sent me their new 3D White Luxe Professional Effects Whitestrips to try out, and the timing was perfect as they had just landed on my wish list.

crest3DWhitestripsReviewBefore

Before – My teeth were dull and lackluster. They could use a little lightening and sparkle.

crest3DWhitestripsReviewDuring

I haven’t whitened my teeth in years, so it was nice to see that Crest had made some improvements to their Whitestrips. The first thing I noticed was their super tight no-slip grip. The strips cling on and stay in place until peeled off. I also like that they stretch for a custom fit.

crest3DWhitestripsReviewAfter

After – My smile is much whiter and brighter after 20 treatments, once daily for 30 minutes each. Crest 3D Whitestrips Professional Effects is just as effective as professional teeth whitening treatments. These whitestrips are formulated with the same enamel-safe ingredient dentists use. You’ll start seeing a whiter smile after three days, with full results in 20.

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I’m not ready to leave my little lady bug just yet, but my appearance is a bit more “work friendly” these days lol. I’ve ditched the men’s pajamas in favor of jeans, brightened my smile, and went for it with a little makeup. Now if I can find a way to get some sleep and ditch the eye bags, I’ll be a happy girl!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

New Year, New Me with J.C. Penney

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A new year is a time for new beginnings, and that has never meant more to me than this year. I have the family I’ve always hoped for and I couldn’t be happier. With a little newborn and a 2 year old, I have zero time for myself, so when J.C. Penney invited me to shop their in-store Sephora, I jumped at the chance to refresh my beauty product supply for the New Year.

When I was pregnant, my creativity was at an all time low. Now that I’m ready to have a little fun again, I ran through Sephora eager to splurge. My wish list was loaded with internet cult faves and surprisingly the in-store Sephora had everything I’d ever wanted to try… soooo I bought it all LOL. It seems the only difference between a full size Sephora and the Sephora in J.C. Penney is square footage because they didn’t lack in variety of brands or products. When I asked if they had Anastasia Beverly Hills, a brand I thought wasn’t very main stream, the Sephora consultant directed me to a massive display including the Kardashian fave Brow Wiz!

I quickly filled up my Sephora bag with 3 very popular products from Benefit Cosmetics including their Hoola Matte Bronzer, watt’s up Cream Highlighter, and They’re Real Mascara. I can’t wait to see if these products live up to the hype. I’d also love to go back for The Porefessional very soon. Another “internet sensation” product I picked up was Makeup Forever’s HD Foundation. I found a color that perfectly matches my skin-tone and the medium coverage is perfect for disguising the effects these harsh winter months have on my skin.

For the eyes, which are my problem area at the moment due to lack of sleep, I picked up my fave Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion and the Sephora consultant recommended the First Aid Beauty Detox Eye Roller. Hopefully these products will help me look a little more bright eyed when I go back to work.

J.C. Penney was the perfect one stop shop for all of my New Year needs. My mom joined me for a little shopping fun and she browsed the linens department for her new house while I perused the Sephora section. Hopefully the baby will give me a little more time next visit because J.C. Penney also had a massive Carter’s department and my fast growing 2-month baby girl is already in need of some 6-month onesies LOL.

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of JCPenney. The opinions and text are all mine.

Fall Style and a Giveaway from Johnston & Murphy

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It’s FINALLY starting to feel like fall here in Florida, and now that I am back to my pre-pregnant size, I’m excited about cooler weather fashion. It was the hottest summer ever with heat advisories every day, which was SO uncomfortable when you are 8 and 9 months pregnant. I was starting to get cabin fever avoiding the heat, so I am happy to feel a little lighter and a lot cooler, just in time for fall and winter.

Now that I can officially pack up my basic maternity jeans and tees for good, I thought I’d jump back in style with a little 2 outfit shopping spree including a couple pairs of amazing boots from Johnston and Murphy! They offered to send me a pair of fall shoes of my choice and I opted for these amazing black leather Sari riding boots. Days later, they offered to send me another pair, and although they have an amazing selection to choose from, I opted for the same exact boot in brown because I loved them SO much. I wear riding boots almost every day in the cooler weather seasons, so now I have a brown and black pair to go with every outfit this fall.

This is my first {and second} pair of leather boots ever. I’ve owned my fair share of faux, but nothing compares to the real deal. These boots are so super soft and I love that they have a panel behind the zipper so that your socks and jeans don’t get zipped up. The black leather calfskin riding boots have an amazing gunmetal toe and heel rand and the tan boots are two toned vachetta {a type of leather is untreated and commonly used in the trimmings of luggage and handbags, popularized by designer Louis Vuitton} and oiled nubuck. Both boots have back zippers with a leather pull, leather lining, memory-foam cushioned insoles, leather sole with rubber inset for enhanced flexibility and durability, and a stacked 1 1/4″ heel.

To keep up with the latest styles from Johnston & Murphy, be sure to follow along at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube!

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I paired the black leather riding boots, with an over-sized chunky black and white turtleneck sweater, my favorite pair of skinny jeans, and a black and gold faux leather bucket bag.

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I mixed shades of neutral by pairing a light camel peacoat with an ivory blouse and my tan leather riding boots.

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Johnston & Murphy were super nice to send me a pair of their shoes, but I’m not the only one lucky enough to try out their fall footwear! One reader will win a pair of Johnston & Murphy fall footwear – for a chance to win this giveaway, go to the Johnston & Murphy website, pick out your favorite pair of fall footwear, paste the link and tell me how you would style your shoes in the RaffleCopter below! US residents only please, 13+ years of age, winner will be chosen at random.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Johnston & Murphy. The opinions and text are all mine.

Sydney Eleanor Has Arrived, 2 Weeks Early

maternityMomBlogger

Hello from my maternity leave, a bit earlier than expected. For those of you that guessed I was having a girl, including myself, we were right! Sydney Eleanor decided she was ready to arrive a couple of weeks early and we are beyond thrilled to have another happy healthy baby, first our boy John and now a darling little girl. She is the cutest sweetest thing and I’m still in shock, in the best way possible, that I am the mom of a little girl.

I had to have a cesarean again, but this time I wasn’t fully put under so there was a proper gender reveal {I was awake and my husband was allowed in the room} and we got to hear her first cry. After everything we had been through to get pregnant, and then missing these special first moments with John, my husband and I had tears of joy streaming down our faces when they said “it’s a girl”. When they held her up over that curtain we saw a head full of thick black hair as she was scream crying and sticking her little tongue out at us. It was a perfect moment.

I’ve missed you all so much. The last couple of months of my pregnancy were exhausting with my big belly, chasing around a 2 year, and a full time job so I took a bit of an unplanned break from blogging, but I’m so happy to be back. I’m looking forward to the holidays, while on maternity leave, in our new house, with two little kiddos. I hope you all are doing well, and I can’t wait to catch up with you again.

to everyone that guessed girl, we were right! #itsagirl #baby #maternity

A video posted by Jennifer (@fabfatale) on

Zoya Paradise Sun Collection Giveaway

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It may be the first day of fall, but for those of you that are not ready to say goodbye to warm weather and longer days, this giveaway is for you! Zoya sent me their entire Paradise Sun collection to swatch for you all, and I have another to give away to one lucky reader.

Fully saturated with a gorgeous micronized metallic sheen, these shimmering beauties are much like sunshine sparkling on water. Meant to be used as an independent color, these shades feature a full-coverage, densely pigmented formula. Paradise Sun is the shimmery sister collection to Zoya’s Island Fun collection.

Zoya Paradise Sun Swatches Aphrodite Red Shimmer Nail Polish

Aphrodite is a vibrant summer red with a micronized pearl metallic finish and multi-hued flash that brings it to life.

Zoya Paradise Sun Swatches Genesis White Shimmer Nail Polish

Genesis is a crystalline white with a micronized metallic pearl finish. Designed to look like micro-fine diamond dust!

Zoya Paradise Sun Swatches Isa Purple Shimmer Nail Polish

Isa is a deep blue-based purple with a micronized metallic pearl finish and an aqua flash that embodies the beauty of exotic island flowers.

Zoya Paradise Sun Swatches Mae Hot Pink Shimmer Nail Polish

Mae is a warm magenta pink with a micronized metallic pearl finish, reminiscent of vibrant Mediterranean flowers.

Zoya Paradise Sun Swatches Oceane Blue Shimmer Nail Polish

Oceane is a true turquoise with a micronized metallic pearl finish that reflects the clearest blue ocean waters.

Zoya Paradise Sun Swatches Selene Green Teal Shimmer Nail Polish

Selene is a true teal with a micronized metallic pearl finish. A unique shade with an aqua fleck that resembles deeper
layers of ocean water.

One lucky reader will win this entire Zoya Paradise Sun summer 2015 collection nail polish giveaway! Follow the directions in the RaffleCopter below for a chance to win. There are no mandatory entries; however, some options are worth more entries than others, US and Canadian readers only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Don’t miss my Manicure Mondays board for more mani Pinspiration!

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