A very small part of me wanted to March, but I can hardly stand the Metro during rush hour, and chaos and crowds give me anxiety. So, I stayed home, went to Cheesetique and had some wine and mac and cheese, bought more wine and cheese to bring home and then baked. In addition to fudge, I made pink cupcakes in honor of those who matched. They weren't fancy, just funfetti with dyed frosting (6 drops of red and one drop of blue). I added a little glitter because glitter makes everything better.
Saturday, January 21, 2017
Sunday, January 15, 2017
- This week, I made chicken teriyaki, jasmine rice, and green beans sauteed in toasted sesame oil and shallots (I added a little water and covered to steam them because they weren't cooking very fast). I've made these before (see blog recipe though last time I used snow peas instead of green beans), but Little Miss never tried it.
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons peeled and finely grated fresh ginger
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 3 pounds total)
Monday, January 9, 2017
No new food this week. Little Miss has a touch of the stomach bug. Captain took good care of her. While she was in the bathroom, he was told not to go in there, but he sat right at the door and offered her everything he could think of. He later brought her tissues at her request. He kept bringing her books. He was very concerned and asked, "Laura, all right?" Then, when she didn't answer, he looked at me and said, "Mama, help." It was so precious. He's missed his playmate quite a bit and has been extra snuggly with us to make up for it. He had Husband read him many books and snuggled hard this morning with me. His sister will be back to normal soon and everything will right itself.
Tuesday, January 3, 2017
The first dish is an easy one - fried eggs and bacon. I let the eggs fry a bit longer to avoid the gooey yolk. I also scrambled a couple of eggs as a back up in case she did not like them. She did not. She ate the egg whites and the the scrambled egg on reserve. Obviously, the bacon was a hit as that wasn't a true new food. Originally, the thought was to go through the book chronologically, but there's a whole chapter on sauces and such so we decided to randomly pick recipes. We'll see what she chooses for next week! As when we first started this venture, it still helps that she chooses the food and also helps that she makes it with me. She pretty much made the entire egg portion this week.
P.S. The serving size was 2 pieces of bacon which I thought was ridiculous. I gave each kid 3 pieces to look like a hero. I did not dole out the bonus bacon until after the fried egg was tried though.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
The boy and I are not fond of mayonnaise, but I wanted a lobster roll really bad. So, I found this recipe. It is delicious.
Serves 6 (I think it made 6 so depending on your sides or appetite, it may not serve 6)
Active time: 25 min Start to finish: 50 min
Source: Gourmet magazine; July 2009
4 (1 1/4- to 1 1/2-lb) live lobsters
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup thinly sliced scallions
1/4 cup finely chopped peeled celery
1/4 cup celery leaves
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/2 stick unsalted butter
3 garlic cloves, smashed
6 hot dog buns, preferably top-split
Accompaniment: lemon wedges
Directions: Prepare a gas grill for direct-heat cooking over medium-high heat. (I simply put the buns under the broiler in the oven....instead of using a grill.) Plunge 2 lobsters headfirst into a large pot of salted boiling water and cook, partially covered, over medium-high heat 8 minutes (for 1 1/4-lb lobsters) to 9 minutes (for 1 1/2-lb lobsters) from time they enter water. Transfer with tongs to an ice bath and let stand until completely cooled. Return water to a boil and cook and cool remaining 2 lobsters. Remove meat from claws, joints, and tails. Save carcasses, shells, and any roe for another use (see "To Make Lobster Stock" and "To Make Lobster Oil"). Coarsely chop meat. Whisk together lemon juice, oil, and 1/2 tsp salt in a large bowl. Whisk in scallions, celery, celery leaves, and parsley, then add lobster and gently toss. Season with salt. Melt butter with garlic in a small saucepan over low heat, mashing garlic with a spoon. Brush inside of buns with garlic butter. Grill, buttered side down, until golden, about 1 minute. Fill buns with lobster.
Cooks’ notes: Lobsters can be cooked 1 day ahead. Remove meat from shells and chill. Buns can be grilled in a lightly oiled hot 2-burner grill pan over medium heat or toasted in a 350ºF oven 5 to 7 minutes.
Tuesday, September 13, 2016
Friday, September 9, 2016
August was really busy! The first weekend, Husband and I traveled to New Jersey for a wedding while the kids stayed home with the in-laws - and their cousins. We hit the track on Friday night to lose a few bucks. We had a nice dinner. Then, the next day, we had a wedding to attend. It was a beautiful wedding. Between, we grabbed some drinks before going to the country club for a lot of eating and drinking. We visited with some of the Husband's family before heading back on Sunday.A photo posted by @princessapr on
A photo posted by @princessapr on
The next weekend, we took off for vacation with the in-laws. The older nephew and Little Miss went up a day before. We met them the next day. It was a beautiful week of sun and sand. We did a lot of eating. The kids loved the water - both the ocean and the pool. I still feel like I'm recovering.
The kids really loved spending time with their cousins. They little ones are really getting much better at playing together and interacting. They still need to be watched because Captain can be kind of mean sometimes. He's used to being the darling baby of the group, but he turns into such bully, not wanting to share any attention. Then, sometimes, when you're not looking, the two of them play so nicely.
The last weekend, Husband and I went to La Tasca and had sangria and paella. The sangria was delicious. We definitely need to do that more often. Then, we saw John Oliver! It was amazing. He's one of my favorite personalities/comedians. After we saw a friend from college and her wife, and then we grabbed drinks with a former co-worker. It was a lot of fun and full of adult, grown up things.A photo posted by @princessapr on
The next day was another wedding! It was the last of the season. The wedding was lovely. We grabbed a drink after with another couple before we went to the reception where we had a blast. After, we were like entirely different people and went to the after party until we shut the bar down. I haven't done that in I don't know how long.A photo posted by @princessapr on
That said, we are definitely ready for the routine of school to start up again. I think our busy summer was great - and fast - but there's sometime comforting in the routine of the Fall. We have some plans we'd like to carry out in the Fall so it'll be something to look forward to.A photo posted by @princessapr on
A photo posted by @princessapr on
Tuesday, September 6, 2016
I don't know how, but Little Miss is entering the third grade!
This morning, she got up early, got ready on time, did her own hair for goodness' sake. She was a little nervous, but I know she'll do great. I can't wait to hear all about it. It's still gratifying to see brand new school supplies - backpack, lunch bag, and water bottle all clean and shiny!
Captain was not excited. He sobbed as she left for school. He's so adored her being with him all summer. They love each other so much.
A photo posted by @princessapr on
July went by in a blur. We went to the pool again during the Fourth of July weekend. We did a day at my sister's pool and a day at my brother-in-law and sister-in-law's pool. The next weekend, we celebrated my nephew's birthday at the pool. The third weekend, we spent it at a friend's pool. We only got a good dip in before it started storming, but it was still fun.
The next weekend, my sister had a party. It turns out there was an issue with her marriage paperwork so they got married again (or for the first time). At the party, one of her bridesmaid and I wore our bridemaid dresses again as a little nod. The last weekend, the kids got their haircut and we met my parents for ice cream. Little Miss also went ice skating because that's what we do when it's a billion degrees. Throughout the month, Little Miss continued with her swimming lessons.A photo posted by @princessapr on
A photo posted by @princessapr on
Monday, September 5, 2016
June wasn't as busy. Except that first weekend. You know, that weekend my sister got married. It was such a great weekend. The kids were great. The rehearsal dinner ran late. It was fun except the kids stayed up to about midnight so it was rough for them. The day of the wedding, they were with my family so they got to take it easy. It was a really relaxing day. The weather was overcast, but it turned beautiful for the wedding itself. The mint green photographed so nice. The kids had a great time. Little Miss danced her tail off. Captain loved eating everything. The in-laws picked up Captain from the reception so he could get to sleep. Little Miss opted to stay the entire evening and spend the night with my family and her cousin. Captain was co-flower girl. He loved throwing the flower petals - and then he tried to pick them all up afterwards.A photo posted by @princessapr on
The second weekend in June, it was my birthday. On Friday, I had drinks with friends after work and then we went to see Me Before You. It wasn't the happiest birthday movie, but we enjoyed it. The next night, we did a big dinner with the in-laws as a belated Mother's Day/Father's Day celebration. On Sunday, we went to the pool where the kids were starting to enjoy the water. The swimming lessons Little Miss has been taking have started to pay off and Captain wasn't as afraid of the water.A photo posted by @princessapr on
The third weekend was a nice, relaxing one. We did nothing of note. I'm not even sure we did swimming lessons.A photo posted by @princessapr on
The last weekend, we mostly just took walks and went to the library. Captain loves the activity cube there, and Little Miss picked out books and signed up for the summer reading program. She didn't really finish the program, but it's only because it's based on the number of books you read, not the number of pages. She chose this summer to get into the Harry Potter series which is a lot of reading, but it's not a lot of number of books. The last week in June, Little Miss and I also went to Barnes & Noble for a Harry Potter celebration. She wore her Hermione costume and participated in trivia. She talked me into buying her chocolate frogs. We also had a nice dinner together before heading home. It was nice to have some girl time with her, and Harry Potter has been bringing us together.
A photo posted by @princessapr on
Sunday, September 4, 2016
Little Miss has started taking swimming lessons earlier this year. A co-worker and friend taught swimming in a previous professional life, and she gets along really well with Little Miss. There has been such progress in the last few months, it's been unbelievable. Little Miss puts her face in the water and floats and does rudimentary swimming.
Captain, in his way of copying his sister, also has been trying to swim. He loves the water. I missed it, but allegedly, an older girl (of around 4 years of age) was inflating his ego before swimming away. Big Captain decided to dive off the pool stairs and follow her, forgetting he did not know how to swim. Husband had to pluck him out of the water and got side eye for the rest of the night for holding Captain back. We'll look into getting him some lessons before next summer or at least visit our inside pool more in the off-season.
Friday, September 2, 2016
May seems like months ago - because it was. May and June were ridiculously busy for us (as was the rest of the summer honestly). The first weekend, we had our annual Kentucky Derby party. It was on the small side this year, but we still cooked about the same amount of food. We watched the race and then played Cards Against Humanity which was a lot of fun - good group. On Sunday, we had the in-laws over for a cook out. Our apartment added a few grills and gave us a proper patio so we tried that out for the first time.
The second weekend was our nephew's birthday. It was a lot of fun. Captain enjoyed the food, and Little Miss enjoyed ruling all the kids around her as the oldest. It was a day of fun and chaos as all children's birthday parties are. The next day was the Taste of Arlington. Captain tried a soba salad which I thought was a little too strong for me, but he loved it. The lotus root always creeps me out, but he ate it up. The wind took his plate which made him sob, but I bought him another. Little Miss mostly liked rock climbing and gathering as much free stuff as she could. She had swimming, and then we actually went back to the Taste of Arlington where we scored free food from some vendors.A photo posted by @princessapr on
The third weekend we did the Fun Fair at the elementary school. Little Miss loves being around her friends. She got her face painted, tried her hand at the cake walk (many times), and loved seeing her teachers outside of school hours. The next day, we did Truck & Bus Day. It rained, but that didn't stop Captain from freaking out all over the bus and trucks and other vehicles. Little Miss also really enjoys this event. After, I took the kids to book club and then we all went to get frozen yogurt and then ended up at my parents' for a jam packed weekend!A photo posted by @princessapr on
The last weekend of May, Memorial Day, we just ran errands, had more frozen yogurt, and went to the pool. It was a little chilly for the pool, but that didn't stop the kids from staying in until it started raining. All in all, it was a good month.
A photo posted by @princessapr on
Monday, August 1, 2016
Tuesday, May 10, 2016
I've been making the most of the Starz app and watching all the new movies. Not much for a movie month. It's because we're so behind on our TV on the DVR, that's what we've been concentrating on. Spoiler, next month is even more pathetic (and May has just started, but I don't see any time to watch anything). Still, Ant Man was so much better than I expected, and Tomorrowland had George Clooney. It wasn't bad, but I thought the message was a little heavy-handed. Still, I thought the cast was great at the very least.
We did some easy, fast cooking for the party - all repeat food. However, I had grand plans to make these Butter Cake Cookies. Nobody ever eats cake, but who can resist a cookie? Turns out, I ran out of time, but I made them the next day. They are absolutely delicious!
Kentucky Butter Cake Cookies Serves: 24 cookies
•1 cup butter, room temperature
•1 cup granulated sugar
•1 teaspoon vanilla
•2 teaspoons baking powder
•½ tsp salt
•3 cups all purpose flour
•¼ cup butter
•½ cup granulated sugar
•1 tablespoon water
•1 teaspoon vanilla
•optional ~ powdered sugar to dust
1.Preheat oven to 350°F/175°C
2.Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat. Set aside.
3.In the bowl of the stand mixer beat butter and sugar together for 1 minute until mixed. Add in eggs and vanilla and mix until incorporated, scraping sides as necessary.
4.Add in baking powder and salt, continuing to mix and finally the flour. Mix until dough just comes together.
5.Using a medium (2 tablespoon) cookie scoop drop the dough onto the lined baking sheet. Alternately you can roll the dough into balls if you want a thicker cookie. 6.Bake for 9-11 minutes until the edges are slightly golden. Don't over-bake.
1.While the cookies are baking combine all ingredients into a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir continuously until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved. Do not bring to a boil.
2.Allow the glaze to cool slightly (about 5 minutes) to thicken.
3.When the cookies are done spoon one teaspoon of the glaze onto each cookie while they're warm. If the glaze gets too thick just heat it up a bit more.
4.Dust with powdered sugar after the glaze has set if desired.
Friday, May 6, 2016
- Yes, Please by Willow Summers (NOTE: This is part of a series. The order of which can be found here.)
- Now, Please by Willow Summers (NOTE: This is part of a series. The order of which can be found here.)
- All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony DoerrLean
- Because of Miss Bridgertona by Julia Quinn (NOTE: This is part of the Rokesby series, but this is the first book and there is no news or information on the website yet.)
- Nobody But You by Jill Shalvis (NOTE: This is part of the Cedar Ridge series, the order of which can be found here.)
- More, Please by Willow Summers (NOTE: This is part of a series. The order of which can be found here.)
- Make Me Stay by Jaci Burton (NOTE: This is part of the Hope series, the order of which can be found here.)
- All Wound Up by Jaci Burton (NOTE: This is part of the Play by Play series, the order of which can be found here.)
I really enjoyed All the Light We Cannot See. I got to hear the author speak last month, and that was highly enjoyable. He's such a good speaker, one of the few authors who was just so vibrant yet spent very little time talking about himself or his book(s). He was generous with Q&A and so very smart and intelligent without making you feel stupid because you weren't as smart as he was.
I enjoyed the always-enjoyable Jill Shalvis and Julia Quinn. Plus, I found a whole cache of Jaci Burton books. I read these two plus a third in May and still have a novella before I'm all caught up. I'm reading the novella out of order, but I do love making progress on books hanging out in my e-reader. Decent month even if I had more I wanted to get to.
Tuesday, May 3, 2016
April starts a very busy time for us. The first weekend, Little Miss had hockey. After we changed and went to Fairfax for family pictures. No shock, but Captain cried the entire time until the photographer gave him a baseball. He stopped crying, but he was never happy. On Sunday, Little Miss had her swimming lesson and a birthday party for a friend. They were supposed to go bowling, but the bowling alley lost power so it was at his house.
The third weekend, I went out of town for my sister's bachelorette party. On Friday, we went to her final dress fitting and then drove down to Charlottesville. We went to a goat farm where we got some goat kisses and ate goat cheese. We hit up the breweries, distilleries, and wineries. We had a shuttle take us around, and at one place, the bartender drove us home. It was a nice, relaxing time. We capped it off with brunch downtown and a nice walk during the unseasonably warm afternoon. Back home, Little Miss had hockey and soccer. She scored her first goal in hockey practice. Husband sent me a video and, in the background, Captain was shouting her name. It was so precious.
The following weekend, we celebrated Captain's second birthday. I made cupcakes with Where the Wild Things Are cupcake toppers and some cupcakes were little boats. The big kids watched a movie while the little kids literally ran around in circles. Captain missed his morning nap so he was slightly cranky and over sensitive, but I think he had fun. He very much enjoyed the pizza at least. Right after the party, I showered and drove to the Marine Corps Heritage Museum for the awards gala. It was a really great event. I had missed it previously because I had a baby and Captain's first birthday party, but I planned accordingly this year.
Last weekend, I hung out with friends. It's been so long that we were just celebrating their birthdays - which were in March and the beginning of April. We had a lovely lunch and caught up. One just got a new puppy so it was nice to meet her.
Friday, April 29, 2016
Captain is 2. I blinked and it happened. He's still my little guy though. He's getting more clear with his speech. He still loves cars, trucks, buses, balls. He loves to sing and dance. He's scared of heights and the toilet (or being on the toilet). He likes almost every food. He used to not care for carrots, but he eats them now. He loves pizza, but he also loves fruit and veggies. He loves guacamole. He's no longer afraid of grass. He loves wearing shorts. He loves being a big boy and independent, but when he's tired, he gives good snuggles. He loves morning cuddles with Daddy, but when he falls or doesn't feel well, he loves Mommy cuddles.A photo posted by @princessapr on
I don't have any of his statistics. I need to make his 2 year appointment except I've been bad about doing some follow up appointments which he needs before his pediatrician visit. So, very soon, he'll be back with the ear doctor for a hearing test and the eye doctor to check his eyes. Probably next year, he'll need to visit the cardiologist again, but he's fine. That will probably close the loop on checking all the internal organs unless something presents itself at potty training which I don't expect. He still needs to get his cosmetic surgery, but I keep putting it off. It'll be best to do it before he goes to school though so maybe next year.
He's on the tiny side, but he's not too small. He fits into some 24 months things and 2T if I roll up the pant legs, but he's outgrown much of the 18 month clothes. His waist is on the smaller side, but I feel like it's much bigger than Little Miss's who still has a ridiculously small waist. We have to get his hair cut soon, but I need a cocktail before I can tackle that. He's a good boy about getting dressed up and tolerates the bow ties and vests, but he won't wear a fedora for me. He hates wearing hats in general, but I'll see what I can do before the summer weather hits. Maybe if I can get one that fasten under his chin, he'll put up with it.
He doesn't sit long enough to be interested in tv, but he watches for a little in the morning. He LOVES Little Einsteins. He loves it when they go super fast. He also loves The Bubble Guppies, but he's not as interactive with that. I think he only likes the annoying theme song. He seems indifferent to Mickey, but I saw him singing to a commercial today.
He really loves ducks and puppies.
He doesn't sleep with anything in his crib and has no comfort item. He likes to be covered when he's put into the crib, but he'll throw it over before he falls asleep. He turns down any stuffed animals or books, but he does like when Little Miss reads to him before bedtime which works for both of them. Despite Husband being afraid he'd be too used to sleeping in my bed, he loves the crib and actually doesn't like to sleep with others. Little Miss loved her crib, but she also loved napping with me. He only naps in his crib (but will do well in the pack and play, too). He will fight sleep if we're busy or out and about whereas Little Miss would nap when it was naptime wherever we were.
Now that he isn't afraid of grass, I hope to get him outside, but the weekends have been so gloomy or busy. At the very least, I'm hoping to get his water table cleaned or out on our back patio so we can play with bubbles. We'll see. Eventually, it'll happen.
Thursday, April 14, 2016
March was busy! The first weekend was hockey - super early. Then, later that day, we had Sister's bridal shower and bachelorette party #1. The shower was a lot of fun - presents, good food, mimosas! That night, the girls all went out at Reston Town Center and drank and danced. We shut the place down. Sunday was a sleepy day - literally.
The next weekend, Husband took Little Miss to hockey while I stayed home with Captain. After, I got a pedicure with a friend before book club. On Sunday, Little Miss had her swimming lesson. It's always great to hang out with friends. Plus, I can't remember the last time I had a pedicure so that was heavenly.A photo posted by @princessapr on
The third week of March, we hung out with Brother-in-Law and Sister-in-Law. It was the beginning of Spring Break. We had corned beef and cabbage. The kids played. It was relaxing, and we got home at a decent hour. It's so nice to see the cousins growing up together and playing well with each other.
On Monday, Husband brought Little Miss to NYC to watch the Rangers play during her Spring Break. Captain and I stayed home together, and we traded selfies.
The last weekend was Easter. We saw Zootopia on Saturday and went to Sister's house for Easter brunch. We had a ton of Korean food which was delicious. The kids had Easter Egg hunts. Captain missed his naps so he was super cranky, but he loved finding eggs and playing with the dog. He peed right through his little outfit right after we got there, but that's life with a toddler for you.A photo posted by @princessapr on
A photo posted by @princessapr on
Monday, April 11, 2016
- The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende
- The Rogue Not Taken by Sarah MacLean (NOTE: This is part of the Rule of Scoundrels series. The order starts with this book and contains the next two books. Her book list can be found here.)
- Alpha by Jasinda Wilder (NOTE: This is part of the Love by the Alpha series. The book list can be found here.)
- Hover by Anne A. Wilson
I read The Japanese Lover for book club. I liked it overall, but there was a lot going on spanning a lot of time. I finished out Sarah MacLean's backlist with The Rogue Not Taken. I read a freebie, Alpha. I also read debut author, Anne A. Wilson. I liked Hover a lot, but I didn't expect it to be more Women's Fiction with a current of romance. I thought it would be more literary fiction. Still, it did a great job with the opening suspense. It was a solid debut.
Friday, April 8, 2016
These were no Spotlight and Room. I really liked Zootopia. Little Miss did not. She had nightmares for over a week. It put a hold on watching any movie in our household. I didn't find it scary, but she doesn't like it when animals and people are mean to each other. Maybe when she's older... I caught Step Up streaming because I've never seen it and wanted something to pass the time. It worked.
Thursday, March 24, 2016
Separately, Little Miss has been having conversations with Husband and me. Husband asked if she would like see the New York Rangers again. She said yes. He said maybe next time they can bring Captain and me to the game. She said that it sounded like fun except I may be home with the baby.
Two days later, we were playing a word game but used names. (A is for April, B is for Bob, C is for Cortney...) We got to T and she named her future brother. For those interesting, his name will be Turtle. No lie. It is funny that this imaginary third baby is a boy when she so much wanted a sister last time.
I told her no more babies. She told me she knew plenty of people who had three (or more) kids. I told her that's fine, but we are not. She countered with "you don't know that."
I have no idea where this is coming from. In the meantime, I don't know where she thinks this imaginary baby will sleep.
Monday, March 21, 2016
This will be the first of many Terrible Two posts, I'm sure. Captain has embraced the Terrible Twos like you wouldn't believe. He isn't an epic tantrum thrower, but he will fall to the floor and cry at the drop of a hat. He has a bit of a temper. He's branching out to hitting (more like swatting). We're trying to combat the bratty behavior in addition to teaching him manners. It's a work in progress. Below is video of what happened when we asked him to say "Please". (He has since said "Please" and "Thank you", but it's definitely far from automatic.)
A video posted by @princessapr on
Saturday, March 12, 2016
For my sister's bachelorette party, I'm making jello shots and pretending I'm at least 10 years younger than I actually am!
I'm making these. I've made the lemon drop ones, and they were tasty if a bit tart (they are probably better with the lemon sugar, but I didn't do that). I have the cosmo and margarita ones in the fridge right now. I plan on making the bellini ones later tonight. If I have time, I'll make some more. I'll determine which ones based on a scientific process of taste testing.
They taste a bit more grown up than the artificially-flavored true jello shots. They're really just cocktails with a little unflavored gelatin. So, unless you don't like gelatin, I definitely recommend these!
(I liked the site up above, but here it is if you'd rather cut and paste - http://www.thekitchn.com/5-cocktail-inspired-jello-shots-228091.)
Friday, March 11, 2016
I am making these for Sister's bridal shower. They are so moist and really delicious. I haven't had luck with the butter cream, but I'm hoping tonight is the night.
Bubbly Champagne Cupcakes
16-24 cupcakes, depending on size
For the Cupcakes:
- 1 box white cake mix
- 3 large egg whites
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/4 cups champagne
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 6 tablespoons champagne
- white sixlets
- white gumballs
- white pearl sugar sprinkles
- disco dust
Preheat oven to 350 °F and line muffin tin with cupcake liners. In an electric mixer, combine cake mix and champagne. Add oil, eggs, and almond extract. Beat on low for 30 seconds and then medium for 1-2 minutes or until thoroughly combined. Fill each cupcake liner 2/3 full with batter. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until lightly golden on top (and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean). For buttercream frosting, cream softened butter until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, incorporating after each addition. add champagne and beat for 2 minutes on medium, until light and fluffy. If you want a stiffer frosting, add more powdered sugar. If you want a looser frosting, add more champagne. Frost cooled cupcakes with buttercream and decorate with piped frosting bubbles and candy bubbles. Top with a shimmer of disco dust!
I am not making them with gumballs, but I have everything else. The cupcake are delicious. I am going to be better and wait until the butter completely softens to make a better butter cream.