Building A Snowgnome

Oh the joy! In my secret heart of hearts was a dream that I did not think I could even dare to close my eyes to think of. It involved my children playing in the snow. In our yard. Building a snowman.


It doesn’t seem like a big dream, but there it was in my heart of hearts.

So when my husband woke me up on New Year’s Eve excitedly exclaiming that it was snowing, I thought I was still dreaming. It was still dark outside, and it did not seem real.


But it was. In Southern California, it snowed.


We woke our kids up and told them to quickly get dressed in warm clothes and shoes. And we all traipsed outside to play in the snow in the dark. Our silhouettes were lit by the streetlamps and Christmas lights twinkling on the street. It felt surreal and I understood how Harry Potter must have felt when Hagrid greeted him in the lighthouse that very first night.

Anything seemed possible.


My kids built a snowman with my husband that I turned into a snowgnome.

He was much happier that way.

As one always is in a red pointy hat.

Did you build a snowman or snowgnome this season? Please tell me I am not the only one with a gnome hat or two.

*Outfit details: My sweater is one that I purchased from the flea market last month. I talked about it more in this post. Anthropologie has a cool cardigan out right now that is also reminiscent of an afghan or blanket. I also found this one on Etsy. If you can crochet, there are many different crochet cardigan patterns available for purchase there for around $3 so you could make your own. I was very lucky and only paid $30 for my sweater. The sleeveless chambray dress was an Anthropologie popback last year from Cloth and Stone (now sold out, similar shaped dress here).

*I shared this on The Pleated Poppy.

Chess Squares


I do not know why, but I want to say the name of this recipe in the way Spongebob would do it. Okay, I do know why. It is because his last name is Squarepants and the title has the word “square” in the name.

Don’t leave me hanging. Let’s do it together in a nasally twang, shall we?:

“Cheeeeeesss Squuuuuuuuaaaaarres.”

Whew! I feel better. Although, any recipe that starts with a paragraph about a children’s cartoon and then proceeds to use the verse, “nasally twang” generally isn’t something that wets one’s appetite. Sorry about that.


I had first seen this recipe on Pinterest and then looked it up on the internet. I found it on so many sites, with no one really knowing where the recipe originally came from. I followed the Duncan Hines’ version, but used butter instead of margarine.

I generally do not post directions if it is not my recipe, but in this case I will. I needed to mention a few tips in the directions below that were not found in the recipe I followed. This is not my original recipe. It is someone else’s. Perhaps a certain sponge’s who dwells under the sea?


1 package of yellow cake mix
3 eggs
1 stick of melted salted butter
8 oz. of softened cream cheese
1 pound (16 oz.) powdered sugar



Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. If you have a convection oven then preheat to 325 degrees F.

In a stand mixer or with a hand mixer in a bowl, beat together one egg, cake mix and melted butter.

Press the dough into a greased 9 X 13 baking dish. I like to use a clear one, because it is pretty seeing the different layers.

Set aside 1/4 cup of the powdered sugar.

Combine the remaining powdered sugar, two eggs and cream cheese in your stand mixer or in a bowl with your hand mixer on medium speed until all ingredients are thoroughly mixed together.

Pour the mixture over the dough in the 9 X 13 pan.

Bake for thirty five minutes.


Remove from the oven and let cool for forty five minutes. Sprinkle the powdered sugar you set aside earlier over the dessert.



Cut into squares.


Serve (refrigerate remaining dessert).


Crown yourself King Of The Sea and keep this yummy indulgence away from Patrick and Mr. Krabs. You will not want to share this.