Tag Archives: chocolate

Catalina Island Part 3 – The Pavilion Hotel

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During our vacay to Catalina Island, we stayed at the Pavilion Hotel. It really depends on what’s within your budget. My sister and I saved up for this trip for months. We really wanted a nice hotel since we were on vacay and didn’t want to deal with dirty rooms and such. We got a room with two queen size beds. They’re so effing comfortable! I fell in love the first time I laid down on the bed. We got the summer package which included the room, ferry tickets, glass bottom boat tour, mini golf or movie, 1 hour kayak rental, golf cart rental, complimentary wine and cheese, and complimentary breakfast every morning. Altogether the package was about $976 including tax. We stayed there for three days and two nights. While it is real pricy, the service was excellent. The girls that work the front desk (Athena and Joy) were amazing. The housekeepers were also really sweet. When we first arrived, we were in our room changing and getting ready to explore. The housekeepers came by and gave us each a bottle of VOSS water, some ice, and some chocolate. The chocolate was delicious. They also returned the next day and did a turn down service and gave us more water, ice, and chocolate. Talk about awesome service! Since we didn’t get to do our kayak rental, they comped us for the Avalon scenic drive tour.
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This doubled as the sink area and coffee area. There was a mini coffee maker with regular blend and decaf as well as TAZO tea bags. They gave us half and half and a bunch of different flavored creamers. To the right side is the bathroom and to the left is the closet. The cabinets below the sink hold a mini fridge, microwave, and safe. There were q-tips, hand soap, shampoo, body soap, conditioner, and lotion on the counter.
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There was a plasma along with a lamp and chair next to it. Then there was a desk and chair under the tv. Pretty sweet. Somehow, because I was intoxicated the first night I watched A Walk To Remember and I wouldn’t let my sister change the channel…lol
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The most comfortable beds EVER!
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The bathroom! It was real cute and a lot bigger than I thought it’d be.
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This is the patio area near the front desk. On the right side there’s a library there. That’s where breakfast is served every morning and that’s where the wine and cheese hour is. People usually sit at the tables outside for breakfast. Their complimentary breakfast consists of bread, jams, peanut butter, nutella, hard boiled eggs, ham, salami, bagels, fruit, cereal, yogurt, granola, tea, coffee, expresso, orange juice, pomegranate juice, and apple juice.
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There are a bunch of lounge chairs to sunbath or just relax. They’re located on the first floor. Originally our room was supposed to be on the first floor of the hotel but because a lot of people couldn’t get on the ferry, they cancelled their reservations and we got a complimentary upgrade. AWESOME! 🙂 I was super bummed we didn’t get to do any of the water sports since that’s what we wanted to do there but overall it was a fun trip. I definitely think we got what we paid for. I highly recommend this hotel. The customer service is excellent. Next up, the Bluewater Avalon.
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This is me standing by the Big Olaf’s ice cream shop. I was still intoxicated and had no idea why my sister kept trying to get me to drink water. Good times!

Fail Sweetly,
Justina

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Frances Bakery (Los Angeles, CA)

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CRONUTS!!! It’s no secret I’m a sweets lover but cronuts have a special place in my heart. I LOVE cronuts. Donuts are okay but none of them bare any comparison to my beloved cronuts. I’ve been bugging the big brother about bringing me some donuts. I had a crazy craving for them and reallyyyyyy wanted a donut. He laughed and said he was busy. Now what? He then said he’d take me to a bakery in Little Tokyo that sold really good cronuts. Eh..Little Tokyo? They’re more known for their Japanese food but wowza! He took me to Frances Bakery and I got myself five delicious cronuts. There were five flavors on display and not wanting to miss out, I got one of each. There were blueberry, original, nutella, strawberry custard, and chocolate. The original is by far the best. It reminded me of a french puff. Those things are so darn delicious! 🙂 Frances Bakery is awesome. The ladies behind the counter were real nice and friendly. They explained everything to me when I asked questions. The only down side is the parking. They do validate parking but the lot is so freakin tiny. It’s hard to navigate in and out without other car trying to fight you for a spot. They sell an assortment of cakes, puddings, cheesecakes, and French macarons in addition to the cronuts. The lot the bakery is in also has a bunch of sushi restaurants. I really wanted to try one of them but we didn’t have time. BOO! No sushi fix but sweets fix is cured.
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What does your big brother do for you when you’ve got a craving? 🙂

Fail Sweetly,
Justina

oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

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I’m usually not a fan of oatmeal cookies but these cookies are so good. I guess I’m against raisins as well since I used chocolate chips instead. I love oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. They’re delicious! These cookies come out perfect every time.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups old fashion oats
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup butter, melted
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons room temp water
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips OR 1 cup regular semi-sweet chocolate chips

– preheat oven to 350 degrees
– in a large bowl, mix together dry ingredients (flour, oats, sugars, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon
– mix butter into dry mixture
– add in eggs one at a time, mixing after every addition
– add vanilla extract and water
– fold in chocolate chips
– scoop dough onto a parchment or silpat lined cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for about 10-15 minutes

These cookies are the business. All my residents love them and the staff members love them too.

Fail Sweetly,
Justina

banana chocolate chip muffins

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I made banana chocolate chip muffins the other day at work and the residents loved them. They smelled SO good when I took them out of the oven. People from all over were walking back to see what I was making. This by far is my favorite banana muffin recipe. I’m not a fan of banana and nuts combined so I went the chocolate route. You could definitely substitute the chocolate with nuts.

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
4 cups cake flour
2 cups butter, melted
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
8 ripe bananas, smashed
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 cups mini chocolate chips

– preheat oven to 350 degrees
– in a large bowl, mix together all dry ingredients minus choc chips
– in a separate bowl, add melted butter to smashed bananas
– add vanilla extract and mix again
– add two eggs, one at a time and mixing after every addition
– add banana mixture to dry ingredients and stir until combined
– add chocolate chips and stir again
– fill sprayed muffin tins about 2/3 of the way full
– bake at 350 degrees for 25 or more minutes depending on your oven

These are the business! 🙂 All my coworkers ate em up and said they were really good. If you’re not a big fan of bananas I would add about 5 or 6. I like a lot of banana flavor in my muffin so I added 8 smashed ones.

Fail Sweetly,
Justina

banana chocolate chip muffins

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I made banana chocolate chip muffins the other day at work and the residents loved them. They smelled SO good when I took them out of the oven. People from all over were walking back to see what I was making. This by far is my favorite banana muffin recipe. I’m not a fan of banana and nuts combined so I went the chocolate route. You could definitely substitute the chocolate with nuts.

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
4 cups cake flour
2 cups butter, melted
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
8 ripe bananas, smashed
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 cups mini chocolate chips

– preheat oven to 350 degrees
– in a large bowl, mix together all dry ingredients minus choc chips
– in a separate bowl, add melted butter to smashed bananas
– add vanilla extract and mix again
– add two eggs, one at a time and mixing after every addition
– add banana mixture to dry ingredients and stir until combined
– add chocolate chips and stir again
– fill sprayed muffin tins about 2/3 of the way full
– bake at 350 degrees for 25 or more minutes depending on your oven

These are the business! 🙂 All my coworkers ate em up and said they were really good. If you’re not a big fan of bananas I would add about 5 or 6. I like a lot of banana flavor in my muffin so I added 8 smashed ones.

Fail Sweetly,
Justina

chocolate chip waffle cookies

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I made chocolate chip waffle cookies with my residents today. They LOVED them! These cookies are delicious. I could totally save these babies all for myself 🙂

Legendary Chocolate Chip Waffle Cookies
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup mini chocolate chips
1 cup (2 sticks) butter melted

– in a large bowl, add sugars, flour, salt, and baking soda and give it a good stir
– add vanilla extract and melted butter and stir again
– add in eggs one at a time and stirring after every addition
– fold in mini chocolate chips until just combined
– preheat waffle iron to regular setting (I used a 3 with my Cuisinart one)
– spray waffle iron, top and bottom with non-stick spray
– scoop about a tablespoon of dough into each section of the waffle iron (mine has four) and let the iron do the work
– enjoy with a glass of milk or a cup of coffee!

These are excellent if you’re making cookies with kids or just for a fun project. They look like waffle bites but they’re actually chocolate chip cookies which makes them extra delicious. Try them sometime 🙂

Fail Sweetly,
Justina

Project Give: Goodies For Vets (Mocha Cupcakes)

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Look at those amazing swirls! I love piping frosting/icing for some strange reason. Decorating cupcakes is my calling. I made chocolate cupcakes spiked with expresso powder and topped it off with mocha icing. The vets were in coffee heaven. Chocolate cupcakes always taste better with expresso powder. Somehow, it brings out the chocolate flavor more. The mocha icing is legit. It’s a regular icing recipe with cocoa powder and some coffee. It’s delicious! 🙂 Now…if you know veterans or have been around them long enough, you’ll understand why I needed to spike the chocolate with expresso powder. All of the vets I volunteer with at the hospital drink their coffee black. It’s pretty much like tar. I poured myself barely half a cup and added three packets of sugar and cream and it was STILL too bitter for me. I was a notorious coffee drinker during my college years but I don’t drink it too often anymore. The coffee they make really hits you hard. I was telling them it could wake the dead and all I got was “that’s how we like our coffee! Strong and black!” Well….alrighty then. What do I say to that?

Sorry for the lack of posts. I’ve been busy with work and standing for long makes me super tired so I haven’t been motivated to blog. I would like to share that one of the Gold Star families wrote back to me saying they received my card which is awesome! I can’t wait to do more to help them.

Fail Sweetly,
Justina