This weekend we had a community bbq qrill party, which involved the buying and assembly of a grill, the trimming of trees and general cleaning of the patio, stringing of white lights everywhere, and a pretty community effort of making the outside space here not look crappy. It succeeded really well, so much so that it's hard to come in.

One of our neighbors even made citronella candles out of wine bottles, so cool and artsy:

I made my chocolate pumpkin muffins, that apparently turn into cupcakes if I frost them, is that how it works?

And seven-layer bars, which were a big hit. I'd never tried them before and they were so good and easy. Here's the recipe, but no pictures:

  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup (6 oz.) butterscotch-flavored chips
  • 1 cup (6 oz. pkg.) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
  • 1 cup chopped nuts
  • Heat oven 350°F. Spray 13 x 9-inch baking pan with no-stick cooking spray.
  • Combine graham cracker crumbs and butter; mix well. Press crumb mixture firmly into bottom of prepared pan. Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over crumb mixture. Layer evenly with remaining ingredients; press down firmly with fork.
  • Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned. Loosen from sides of pan while still warm; cool on wire rack. Cut into bars or diamonds.
  • For perfectly cut cookie bars, line entire pan with foil, extending foil over edge of pan. Coat lightly with no-stick cooking spray. After bars have baked and cooled, lift up by edges of foil to remove from pan. Cut into individual bars.

I also finally started doing my 5-mile walk/jog again (well, 2-3 miles of it anyway) and it is so fun! I think I missed my friend Leslie... and eating cupcakes and seven layer bars without feeling guilty.

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