Oven Baked Apple Chips

First of all, my apologies for being away so long. Bad Tonya. Bad bad. I have allowed my life to become too full. Actually, I thought with both my children heading to school this fall, my schedule would free up substantially. Apparently having more time is the great lie of having school age children. Why didn’t anyone tell me that I was about to become the Tonya Taxi Service? I feel like my life is spent in my van driving round in a 2 mile loop. Ok, enough complaining. I have resolved to suck it up and find time to share with you all. You deserve it. Regardless of how harried I feel on a daily (hourly) basis these days. Deliciousness still needs to be made. Women have successfully managed school, children, meals, housecleaning and jobs for decades – it’s the least I can do to get some recipes typed up! Starting with these dee-licious apple chips. No dehydrator needed!

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Raspberry Oatmeal Cookie Bars

In the past several weeks I made two monumentally bad choices. Probably more, but these two will probably haunt me the rest of my life. The first mistake was trying salt n’ pepper pistachios for the first time. Please hold your judgement until you find out the other thing I’ve never had before. Pistachios pale in comparison. I think since I first cracked one of those salty nuts I’ve taken down an average of a pound of them a day. No exaggeration. I’ve blown thru three 5 pound bags of those evil snacks in about two weeks. Fifteen pounds of nuts? That’s crazy! I just can’t get enough of them.

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Glazed Cranberry Orange Muffins

I made these muffins because I was feeling too lazy to make my famous scones, but wanted a similar kind of breakfast item to bring with us camping. I hate being lazy. Especially when preparing for camping. My scones aren’t even really hard, just more difficult than dumping everything in a bowl, then into a muffin pan. Which is all the work these delightful treats require.

Sopapilla Cheesecake

Who would have thought that cinnamon sugar, puffy warm bread and cream cheese filling would blend together in a totally divine delicious way? I always think of cheesecake with fruit or chocolates, never did I think of combining it with flaky golden pastry and sweet cinnamon sugar. Mind. Blown. Mouth. Happy.

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Nanny’s Banana Pudding

I have three indelible memories of my Nanny (my mom’s mom) and cooking. The first two revolve around holidays. Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve I have always spent with my Mom’s side of the family in my Nanny’s home. Thanksgiving found my Nanny with a faded apron in the kitchen with the turkey and all the trimmings. Christmas Eve it was the same apron, but this time a ham occupied the oven and all the cousins ran thru the house with glee at the mounds of gifts awaiting us downstairs. My third memory is possibly my favorite. It involves weekend adventures at the cabin with just Nanny and my best childhood (and adulthood) friends. Also bananas, Nilla wafers and pudding. Isn’t my Nanny the most adorable 85-year-old you’ve ever seen?

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Avalanche Bars

I took my daughter back-to-school shopping last week. We had a grand old-time preparing for the big first day of school. It was all fun and games until I realized that new school clothes meant she was actually heading off to school. Gulp. She started Kindergarten yesterday. My baby. She even (gasp!) rode the bus! She was so stinkin’ excited for her first day. And, she looked adorable in her brand spankin’ new duds. Yes…Mommy got new clothes too.

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Oven Baked Zucchini Chips

It’s zucchini season! Many of you, with greener thumbs than I, are reaping bountiful harvests of beautiful green squash. I’m so jealous! I kill just about every plant I touch, so a garden of homegrown deliciousness has never worked out for me. Also, it seems like a lot of work. Kudos to you vegetable garden type folks!

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Lazy Heath Bars

I’ve been cleaning my house like a crazy person for two days. If you know me, you know this is NOT normal behavior. Usually I’m perfectly content for my house not to resemble a museum or some kind of scientific lab. I prefer to spend my time on the floor doing puzzles or coloring rather than scrubbing. Things are clean enough. Or, as my father-in-law used to say “good enough for government work”. He was allowed to say things like that. Jeff worked for the IRS for 20+ years. When houseguests are coming however, I become a short freckled version of Adrian Monk. Ok. Not quite that obsessive. Close though.

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Glazed Caramel Apple Bread

This recipe comes to you courtesy of Crisco. Funny story. Last week I was enjoying the cooling evening breeze wafting thru my open window with a beverage in my hand and my love by my side when I heard frantic calls of “Tonya! Tonya!” coming from over the fence. My adorable neighbor (and her daughter) were beckoning me to come over. “Quick! Baking emergency! Come over!” they hollered and then disappeared back into their house. So, off I darted to the house next door to see what was up. I’m embarrassed to say that I brought my drink with me. It was hot out, the drink was fresh and far be it from me to let a perfectly cold cocktail go to waste. “Baking emergency” could mean anything from a massive grease fire in the oven, to salt being used liberally as a seasoning in a batch of cookies. I had no idea what I was walking in to…but, with my beverage in hand I was ready for anything.

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No-Bake Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

I have been looking for a no-fail, easy homemade granola bar recipe for a few weeks now. Fall is coming and my sweet Madison is starting Kindergarten. How did that happen so fast? I blinked and suddenly she was 5. Crazy. I cannot wait for after school snack time. I remember that being the best thing ever. Come home from school to a glass of cold milk and some kind of treat? Oh yeah. This recipe is going to be made every single week I’m sure. It takes 5 minutes, you don’t have to bake anything and they are incredibly delicious.

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