2 More Beautiful Quick And Easy Mini Cupcakes

2 More Beautiful Quick And Easy Mini Cupcakes

June 29, 2016

Mini Cupcakes

    Mini cupcakes are so fun and practical, too!  When the kids were little and still in school, I made mini cupcakes for them to share with their class.  Being a room mother back then, I knew how many regular sized cupcakes were thrown into the trash can after one or two bites.   The minis are one or two bites and substituting them ended a lot of waste.

     Besides, isn’t it a little awkward to eat a full sized cupcake with grace?

    These little white cupcakes were made with a Betty Crocker cake mix.  Milk was substituted for the water in the recipe.  You can change the liquid in packaged cake mixes to change the flavor or make them a little richer and more like homemade.


   Using this white cake mix, it made sixty-six mini cupcakes.  I used the Vanilla Buttercream Frosting recipe.  There was just a little leftover and plenty for frosting all of the cupcakes.


   The little white cupcakes were taken to a pool party.  Even though they were made in no time and were so quick, they ended up being such a hit!  There were no leftovers.

    These little mini Cherry Coke Cupcakes were inspired by a post on Pinterest.  Sophia came over and we made these together.  


   We had a Betty Crocker Chocolate Fudge Super Moist Cake Mix and used it.  1 cup of Cherry Coke and 1/3 cup of Maraschino Cherry Juice was substituted for the water.   Using the amount of oil and 3 eggs as indicated on the box, we added them and followed the directions for mixing.


   The recipe on the CincyShopper.com site calls for plain Coke, but Sophia and I thought, “Why not use Cherry Coke?”  So, we did.


   That recipe also calls for adding a Maraschino cherry to the middle of the batter in each muffin cup before baking.  Since these were minis, we did not do that.


   In comparison to the white cake mix making sixty-six, this cake mix made eighty-four mini cupcakes!  Did the addition of the Coke make the difference?  They were light and tasty.


   We used the same Vanilla Cream Butter Frosting that was used for the white cupcakes.  We substituted 1 tablespoon of Maraschino cherry liquid for one of the tablespoons of cream. 


   I confess.  Not thinking about it, I used generic butter for the frosting and halfway through, I realized it.  Land O’ Lakes butter is what I always use for frosting. Not all generic butter is the same.   I needed to add an extra cup of powdered sugar to achieve the right consistency.  That won’t happen again!  Learned my lesson.


   We also added red food coloring and Lorann Oils’ Cherry Flavoring, which is used for candy making and baking.  These are three to four times more potent than regular extracts.  We wanted a more noticeable cherry flavor.  (We are an Amazon affiliate and will receive a small percentage of any sale at no cost to you if you purchase from this link.  Thanks for supporting this website!)

    We ended up using six drops of the cherry flavoring.  Sophia was more than willing to taste after each addition!  She said it was perfect with six drops.  Then, the frosting was piped on the cupcakes.


   We didn’t want the cherries on top to bleed into the frosting, so, they were first set on paper towels to drain and then blotted lightly with the paper towels.  Each cupcake was then topped with a cherry.   They really did look so pretty!

    2 More Beautiful Quick And Easy Mini Cupcakes.  Mini cupcakes, is there anything better?




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Heart Breaking Rose Disease

Heart Breaking Rose Disease

June 27, 2016


   Remember when the ‘Knock Out Roses’ first came out and they were rose disease and pest resistant?  I do.  They bloomed all season.  They were en masse in the landscapes at the mall and even on some of the interstates.   I was so excited and couldn’t wait to plant some in our own landscape.

   We have three of the original line of red Knock Out Roses in the landscape in the front yard.  They seem to be doing fine.  There is a yellow Knock Out Rose next to the garden bench on the walk to the back yard.  The other roses we have are climbing roses, multiflora, or hybrid tea roses.


   There was another beautiful pink double Knock Out next to the walk.  Dave had given it to me for Mother’s Day a few years ago.  Last year in August, the strange growth in the picture appeared.  The new growth is red, as you can see.  The thorns on the new growth are red and softer than normal growth.  The bunchy growth at the ends has been referred to as ‘witch’s brooms’.  You can see why.


   My oldest daughter, Danielle, works at a local garden center and I showed it to her.  She said to get rid of the entire plant before the other roses get this disease.  Dig it up and put it in a plastic bag and get rid of it or burn it.  Be sure to disinfect the pruners!   (I disinfect the pruners between pruning or deadheading any of the rose bushes, just in case.)



    This is ‘Rose rosette disease’.  Rose rosette disease is caused by a virus carried by a tiny mite.   From what I have read, there is nothing you can do to doctor the plants back to health. Destroy them.  The mites have already infected the plant. Unfortunately, the mites are spread by birds and the wind.   There is no controlling those two forces. 


   When we returned from the beach to work in the gardens, this disease had attacked another one of my ‘double Knock Out roses’.  This time, it was a red one. The pink and red doubles were the ones that had succumbed to this virus. One of the articles I read on this nasty disease suggested that the doubles seemed to be more susceptible to the virus.


     This is not something to take lightly.  I read that one person had lost sixty rose plants to this rose disease, not just Knock Outs either.  It attacked other roses as well. Another lady had left all of her infected roses in the ground and they all died before long.  She didn’t know to get rid of them at the time.   Who knows how far the rose disease has spread because people are leaving the plants in the ground instead of destroying them?


   Another threat, which I had not even considered before, is the “mow, blow, and go” landscape companies.  If they trim back the roses, do you think they disinfect their tools?  They will be spreading this disease wherever they go.


   There are other sites, but for more information on this nasty threat to our roses, start here ►Dread garden disease knocking out Knock Out roses. 

   I sincerely hope that this heartbreaking rose virus does not affect your garden.

 Rose Rosette Disease on MyHumbleHomeandGarden.com


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The Garden’s Alive With Color!

 June 24, 2016

   This last month did not go as planned, like most of my life, but the garden’s alive with color!  A nasty virus took me out for a week.  I am never sick!  After that week, we went on a vacation to St. Augustine, Florida.  Even though the flowers were neglected during that time, they have continued to grow and bloom.  Isn’t this wall of Annabelle hydrangea gorgeous?

 Annabelle Hydrangea Wall - The Garden's Alive With Color! on MyHumbleHomeandGarden.com

   The magnolia tree we planted earlier, which you can see in the background, has shoots on it that have grown about fourteen inches!  The white petunias in the painted pots have grown and are now spilling out of them.


   Each June, as the flowers begin to open up, I consider that maybe we should take a vacation at another time.  A week or more of absence from the flower gardens is huge in June and I hate to leave.  All of the Asian lilies that Aidan gave me for Mother’s Day four years ago were already bloomed when we got back. Aren’t these gorgeous?  

   There was a lot of work to do, weeding, pruning, and cleaning the pond filter.

   The butterfly weed has grown and is blooming.   As expected, it is a nice contrast to the lavender colored blossoms on the butterfly bush.   I’ve already seen a little hummingbird moth on the butterfly bush!  The yellow is also echoed by the big yellow daylilies.

Butterfly Weed - The Garden's Alive With Color! on MyHumbleHomeandGarden.com


    The red daylilies have begun to bloom, too.   Look at this beautiful variety, ‘Pardon Me’.  This is all happening too fast!  Unfortunately, summer always seems to fly. 


Pardon Me Daylily - The Garden's Alive With Color! on MyHumbleHomeandGarden.com


     These Easter lilies were given to me last year by my niece, Kate.  They are blooming right now and are just gorgeous.  They are planted alongside the Asian lilies on the southwest side of the house.


       The ‘Don Juan’ red climbing roses on the arbor are also blooming.  They are big and gorgeous and smell wonderful, too.


      Dave’s pepper plants in the pot are loaded with peppers.  He chose two different varieties this spring.  ‘Chilly Chili’ is the white variety.  They apparently turn red as they ripen.   This variety earned the ‘All-America Selections’ award.


   The purple plant, I believe, is ‘Purple Flash’.  It has small round dark purple, almost black, peppers on the plant.  Dave grew them last year and wanted another plant this year.   


   There is a lot of yellow in the garden this year.  I like the way it pulls your eye through the landscape and even onto the patio.   You can’t help but smile when you see the cheery yellow flowers.  Yes, The Garden’s Alive With Color!

 The Garden's Alive with Color on MyHumbleHomeandGarden.com

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