This year I flew down to Phoenix for the tradition! We ran in the 5K for Healthy Kidneys. I think this was our first warm birthday run. All of our other birthday runs have been in the cold! Madison, Wisconsin. Boston, Massachusetts. Roanoke, Virginia. Chilly, chilly, chilly!
This year we broke a sweat in our t-shirt and shorts! We sent the boys ahead to try to win the loot. They weren’t quite fast enough! Ellie and I settled in for a nice easy run and caught up on life without the boys. I wouldn’t miss this tradition for the world!
So, Phoenix was pretty much amazing. I loved it. We hiked a lot. And Ellie and Matt introduced me to lots of cool new plants that I had never seen before. And the weather was fabulous! I may be going back to Phoenix for the birthday run again next year!
On Friday, Matt and I hiked Camelback Mountain while Ellie had to go into work. That was a fantastic way to start the trip! And I had never stood so close to such a large cactus!
Anthony flew in on Friday night, and on Saturday we hiked the Superstition Mountains to a lookout where we could see Weavers Needle!
The scenery is just absolutely phenomenal! I was blown away! Nothing like the AT which is most of what I have hiked until now! I mean look at those pictures!
Matt also turned the big 3-0 on the Saturday I was there! So after the hike we celebrated with a lot of wine, good food, and laughter! And cake! We can’t forget the cake! When we were at the store trying to figure out Matt’s birthday cake, he said he was really in the mood for sandwich cookies. Well, I think we made him the ultimate chocolate chip sandwich cookie! I am so glad I was able to share in the festivities!
And do you want to know how to get a 1500 piece puzzle put together ridiculously fast? Put an ASA and three PhDs in a room together. It will get done.
I had the absolute best time on this trip! I can’t believe I have been missing out on that part of the world! It is always amazing to see good friends, but I really needed this trip to see Ellie and Matt. And I am sooo glad A could travel all the way from Madison to be part of the visit as well! We all had such a great time together! It had been way, way too long. And I completely approve of the location of their move!
Quote of the Day:
“You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.” -Bob Marley
So, this cake was AH-MAZING. I know I have a little bias for cookies, especially good, chewy chocolate chip cookies, but this was to die for. I definitely ate my fair share! You must try this!!
Giant Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwich Cake
- 3/4 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1-1/3 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup rainbow sprinkles
- chocolate frosting
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Lightly grease two 9-inch cake pans. Line bottoms with parchment paper or waxed paper for easy removal.
- Cream butter, sugar, brown sugar and corn syrup in a large mixing bowl. Add egg and vanilla; mix well. Combine flour, corn starch, baking soda and salt together in a small bowl. Mix into butter mixture. Stir in chocolate chips.
- Divide dough evenly between the two cake pans (we used 3 cake pans for 3-0!), spreading to cover bottoms of pans. Bake 20 to 25 minutes until cookies are light golden brown. Cool completely in pans on wire racks.
- Prepare frosting.
- Place one cookie bottom side up on a plate. Spread frosting to edges, then top with additional cookie. If desired, you can reserve a small amount of frosting for the top of the cake as well.
- With sprinkles cupped in your hand, gently pat them around the cookie along the frosting edge.
Courtesy of Confessions of a Cookbook Queen