One of the sad realities of adulthood is not being able to get away with wearing the silly, adorable, costume-y clothes we love putting our kids in. I’m living vicariously through my toddler this Thanksgiving my forcing him to wear just the sort of adorable, silly shirt I’d look ridiculous in as a grown-up!
We haven’t attempted many crafts together in the past, but he and I worked together to make this shirt and some matching dishtowels (one to keep, one to give), and we actually had a pretty good time.
About this time of year, I always start craving caramel apples. And despite the rumors I’ve heard (and chosen to ignore) about people gaining 10ish pounds on average between Halloween and New Years, I can’t seem to make myself feel bad about holiday-related baking (and eating). I have too many happy memories of helping my mom bake Christmas cookies, coming home from school on a chilly fall day and eating caramel apples with my siblings, and sipping hot chocolate while watching the snow fall to deprive myself of reliving those, and making new ones with my own little cutie.
So yesterday afternoon, while the wind was blowing and we were snuggled up inside, I figured it was time to carry on the caramel apple tradition. A simple way.
Making a stand-alone caramel sauce to dip apples in just seems so much easier to me than dipping whole apples—easier to make, easier to eat, easier to pile on ridiculous amounts of caramel to each bite of apple. (My preferred and recommended caramel : apple ratio is roughly 3 : 1.) And although I’ve generally been intimidated (not to mention wildly unsuccessful) with homemade caramel sauces in the past, this one was quick and simple and so, so delicious. I really appreciated that there weren’t any unusual ingredients, either—I already had everything I needed in my pantry. I found the recipe here, and will definitely be saving it to remake next fall, too!
Homemade Caramel Apple Dip
1/2 c. (1 stick) butter
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. honey
1 can (14-oz) sweetened condensed milk
Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan over medium-low heat.
Add the remaining ingredients, raise heat to medium-high and bring to a boil, stirring constantly (will take 5-10 minutes).
Lower heat to medium and cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly.
Remove from heat, let cool a bit and then pour into a serving bowl and serve warm.
Refrigerate any leftovers. Microwave a few seconds to soften before using again.
Never do I wonder about a potential hospital baby-switch-mixup more than when it comes to food with this little guy. That excitement on his face? It’s over the apples. JUST the apples. And when I dipped one in caramel and offered it to him, he cried and threw it across the room. I’m really doubting our genetic connection if he is more excited about a plain, naked green apple slice than he is about an apple slice with caramel on it! (But I can’t complain—at least he likes apples.)
I guess little man can eat them however he likes—I like my apples with lots of caramel goodness piled on top. I won’t lie to you, folks—this stuff is so tasty that when we finished our apple slices, I scraped out that little bowl of sauce with a spoon. Can’t let a single delicious calorie go to waste.
In some ways, I feel like having my 2-year old son is low-pressure compared to what having a daughter would be. Toss him in jeans and a t-shirt, and he’s dressed to the nines. But a little girl? More is expected. Is her outfit sufficiently ruffly? Has her hair been brushed/pigtailed/curled? Does she have a matching accessory in her hair? Is it nearly as big as her head, like a miniature toddler satellite dish? Does her look radiate pink and sparkle and glitter in a 2-foot radius?
I told you. Boys are low pressure.
But they also come with fewer cute options when it comes to shopping and dressing . . . the cute stuff is out there, but it isn’t as accessible or easy to find.
Either way, dressing toddlers of the frilly or butch persuasion can be a delight if you have a few fun ideas in mind for how to go about it. Here are 5 adorable items that I think would be sweet as pie on any little mini. And with Christmas around the corner, now’s a great time to start thinking about what the littles in your life might be receiving!
There’s something adorable and cozy and just so dang sweet about a little guy racing around in a hoodie sweatshirt. I love it. And this personalized version from Patches and Puppies on Etsy just adds to the cuteness with an appliqued star on the front side, and Jr.’s name in fun modern fabrics on the back.
If you know how to sew, you ought to tackle an adorable project for the little ones in your life this Christmas . . . and these little legwarmers are a stylin’ place to start! You can find the detailed instructions to make these yourself over at Simply Homemade!
Just because your little man is young enough to still be dropping twosies in his onesie doesn’t mean he can’t be a dapper fellow. These fun onesies from Swanky Shank on Etsy are a great way to dress up your handsome little gentleman!
For the sweetest of the sweet, the cutest of the cute, the fanciest of the fancy, only teensy couture booties will do. These are available now on BB Daily Deals and are available in a variety of adorable fabrics and finishes, like leopard, pink leopard, zebra, and feathers or flowers. I don’t even have a girl but . . . I just bought a pair. Don’t tell my husband.