I'm a wife to my "Mr. Right". A momma of five. A maker of slow food and simple living. A collector of memories, a keeper of books, and a champion for books that make memories. An addict who likes my half-and-half with a splash of coffee. A fractured pot transformed by the One Who makes broken things beautiful. I heart homeschooling, brake for libraries, and am glad you're here with me on the journey! Be sure to subscribe to my monthly newsletter. Or, follow along with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google +, Youtube, or Pinterest.

Pinterest Flips and Flops: DIY Cough Drop Lollipops and More

Hey all!  Welcome to the October Pinterest Flips and Flops Link-up!  I don't know about you, but I've been elbow deep in homemade pumpkin puree. What do you do with dozens of frozen bags of pumpkin mush?  Well, first thing's first...you scour Pinterest for the yummiest looking pumpkin recipes. Then...you start baking!  And that's just what I have been up to the last few weeks.  

I'm happy to report that I've had a lot of success with my fall-themed Pinterest pins...so far!  All FLIPS...NO FLOPS!  Here are three of my favorites from the past month, and one bonus recipe that my daughter tested for a school project.

Pinterest Flips and Flops: I tested out 4 Pinterest pins...DIY Cough Drop Lollipops, Homemade Hot Chocolate, Pumpkin Whoopie Pies, and Homemade Cheese Cracker recipes. Did they taste/turn out as well as the pinners said they would?-The Unlikely Homeschool

FLIP: DIY Cough Drop Lollipops

Pinterest Flips and Flops-DIY Cough Drop Lollipops

The sore throat blahs began circulating around my house a few weeks ago.  While, I would have loved to whip up an all-natural brew of herbal tea for all my little sickies, our entire family gags at the very thought of hot tea.  It's just not our cup of tea...you might say!  Unfortunately, the alternative, a standard throat lozenge, poses a choking hazard for my young kids.  That's why I was so excited when I found this DIY tutorial to make Cough Drop Lollipops.  They were super simple to make, and got rave (whispered) reviews from all three enflamed throats.  I didn't have any actual lollipop sticks on hand, but used popsicle/craft sticks instead.  My kids were able to suck on the lollipops and get soothing relief.

Before making these lollipops, please be aware that the ingredients of many cough drops are not safe for young children.  Be sure to consult the suggested age-range for the lozenges of your choice.

FLIP: The Best Hot Cocoa Recipe EVER

Pinterest Flips and Flops homemade hot cocoa recipe

A drizzly fall day coupled with a sore throat and the sniffles demands a hot cup of SOMETHING.  If you're me, that "something" comes in the form of a dark chocolate latte'.  For my kids, I skip the caffeine and opt for cocoa instead.  In my slow-and-steady efforts to rid my pantry of plastic masquerading as food, I went searching for a recipe for hot chocolate that didn't come in a paper pouch.  That's when I happened upon The Best Homemade Hot Cocoa Recipe EVER (or so it claimed!)

The truth is, I've only had homemade hot cocoa one other time in my life, and that gloppy concoction was abysmal, at best.  SO, whether THIS particular recipe from Pinterest is the BEST EVER, I really couldn't say.  But, I can tell you that if it's not, than the cocoa that can actually claim that title must be something for the record books.  Because THIS recipe is fantastic!  It's so rich and chocolatey.  It's like dessert in a mug...or two!  After substituting canned whipping cream for the homemade version, this recipe was 100% the real deal.  

I'm not a huge fan of cinnamon with chocolate, so I might make it SANS the cinnamon next time.  But, then again...why mess with a great thing?!

FLIP: Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

Pinterest Flips and Flops-pumpkin whoopie pie recipe

Ok, I'm gonna let you in on a little secret here.  The Hubs loves Little Debbie Oatmeal Cream Pies.  When we were first married, he would buy them on his way home from work and have the entire box eaten by the end of the night.  He loooooves them!  Not surprising, however, his 30-something metabolism just doesn't seem to want to play nicely with Little Debbie or her cream pies.  Needless to say, our cupboards have been Little Debbie-less for a few years now.  

But, who needs Debbie and her plastic pies anyway when you've got Pinterest?  At the first sign of fall, I dusted off a few of last year's pins and set to work making these Pumpkin Whoopie Pies with my mounting stash of pumpkin puree.  

I'll be honest, they were really putzy to make and probably will be filed under "extra special treat."  BUT...THEY WERE REALLY YUMMY!  

Move over, Little Debbie!

FLIP: Homemade Cheez-its

Pinterest Flips and Flops-homemade cheez-its

For her first month-long independent project of the school year, Sweetie Pea chose to do a study of Whole Foods vs. Processed Foods.  She ended her research by putting together a short informative presentation and taste test for the family.  She chose three popular store products (ranch dressing, microwaveable popcorn, and cheese crackers) and attempted to make homemade versions of them for a food FACE-OFF challenge.   

With only three ingredients, these Easy Cheese Crackers turned out to be the hit of the night.  By adding a little bit of salt to them as they came out of the oven, she recreated the taste of Cheez-its...WITH REAL FOOD!

Now, it's your turn.  Have you had any Pinterest FLIPS lately?  Or maybe just FLOPS?  Either way, now's your chance to reveal the truth behind that pretty pin.  Is it worth trying?  Link-up here or at any of these other fabulous blogs and let us all know.


  1. I've been baking with pumpkin recently too. My favorites have been Pullaway Pumpkin Bread (http://www.adashofcinnamon.com/2012/11/07/pumpkin-pull-apart-bread/) and pumpkin cupcakes. My question for you is, how do you do your homemade pumpkin puree? What kind of pumpkins? Just regular carving pumpkins? And what cooking method do you use? And finally, what is the ratio of pumpkin flesh to water? Last time I made the puree, it was watery, so I've been using the canned stuff ever since. But ccrls I'd love to get back to real ingredients!

    1. Wendy, I use smaller-sized pumpkins because they have a sweeter taste and are better for baking. After gutting the pumpkin (and saving the seeds for roasting), I cut the pumpkin into chunks, place them on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 45 min. Then, I slice off the rind, cut into smaller chunks, puree in my blender with 1-2 Tablespoons or water. I measure out 2 cups worth into freezer bags and freeze. This is about the equivalent of a can of pumpkin. It is a bit soupier than the canned versions, but I've never had a problem when baking. Hope that answers your questions.

  2. We love Hot Chocolate with cinnamon, it's Mexican Style. Abuelitas Hot Chocolate in the Mexican food section here was our introduction to cinnamon in hot coco. We are also cooking with lots of pumpkin right now we found the best pumpkin doughnut hole recipe. I'll have to blog it so I can put it on flip/flop next time it comes around. WE LOVE FALL! Blessings! K

    1. Yes! Please do. I'd love to try my hand at doughnut making and would appreciate the nudge.

  3. The pumpkin whoopie pies sound so good. I think they'd be good with the hot chocolate!