Happy Friday everyone! I hope everyone enjoyed their 4th of July celebrations with family and/or friends. The holidays are always great for families to spend time together. This 4th of July was probably one of the best ones I have had in a long time. I was with my WHOLE family–grandparents, aunts and uncles, parents, and all fourteen grandchildren. Two of my cousins came up from Florida and my one cousin who is in the Marines got to come home! We all had a great time together eating food at our barbeque, watching fireworks and singing happy birthday to my dad, and most of all enjoying each others’ company.
Nothing beats the whole family being together on a special day when the United States declared independence from Great Britain. We are so fortunate to live in a country that gives us the freedoms to speak up, publish our thoughts, and even practice our faith. This country was made for the people and to serve the people. Going away a few weeks ago to the Philippines, it suddenly became concrete that I am so blessed to be born in the land of the free and home of the brave.
This day is also to remember those who serve and fight for our country. They are the ones who fight to protect our nation and preserve our freedoms. Thank you, Matthew, for your strength, courage, dedication, and selflessness to our country. I am so proud of your accomplishment as a Marine and most of all proud to call you my cousin–I love you Matthew and so glad you could come home this holiday!
Your family at home misses you very much and does not go a day without praying for your safety. May God bless all of those who serve our country!
Now it’s time for one of my favorite 4th of July dessert recipes…
Yesterday morning I put this photo up on twitter asking everyone to guess what 4th of July treat I was making…
Feast your eyes on this!
1/2 cup vegetable oil 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup white sugar 1/4 tsp baking power
1 tsp vanilla extract 1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup all purpose flour 2 eggs
Preheat oven to 35o degrees F and grease a 9×9 inch baking pan. In a medium bowl, mix together oil, sugar, and vanilla. Beat in eggs. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt; gradually stir into the egg mixture until well blended. If you desire to, you may add in 1/2 a cup of chocolate chips (trust me, you will want to!). Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 20-25 min.
Cream Cheese Frosting –
mix 2 packages of cream cheese, 2 cups of powdered sugar, and 1 tsp of vanilla. Spread the frosting evenly over the top of the brownies when they are cool. Cut up strawberries and place on top to be the stripes and blueberries for the area of the stars. Place in the refrigerator until ready to serve..this is sure to be a fan favorite…I know my cousins could not stop getting a taste last night 🙂