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apples

Let’s Have A Ball Themed Kids Party & Apple Slice Party Balls

I am now the mother of a two year old. 

Of course I’ve been warned about the Terrible Two’s and the nightmare that I am now  a party to. 

And no offense to those who have gone before me, but I rather enjoy this age. Every age, every situation and every person is not without drawbacks. There is no such thing as a perfect situation. Quality of life is built on figuring out what is great about the situation that you are in and enjoying the crap out of it. 

So, what is great about 2 year old?

You get to have all the answers. You are able to solve all of their problems. These tiny little humans see you, their moms, as the Fair Princess Goddess of The Universe. You have control over everywhere they go and who they play with. And all of that will end way too soon. As much as I long to have more freedom and independence, sleep past 6:30am, set my schedule on a whim, travel to exotic places and be able to pee in private again, I know without a single tiny doubt that I will miss the hell out of my 2 year old once she is all grown up. 

For Tater’s second birthday, my little tomboy wanted to run around the back yard and play with balls, her favorite thing in the entire world. So that’s what we did. 


I had huge gigantic balloons from Sweet Lulu


I made Yarn Ball Party Favors, You can see the DIY here:

Dozens of red and white beach balls covering the lawn, that I bought from Oriental Trading

Tater was in love with this. 



I filled a red baby pool up with a bag of ball pit balls. 

And as I shared with you a few weeks ago, I’m tring to rid my life of food dye. Quite a challenge for someone who is used to spending hours concocting the perfect frosting color for cakes. I let go and accepted the fact that the frosting I made with beet powder was just going to be purple and that was OK. More on that in a later post. 


A least I was able to sneak some antioxidants and vegetables into her cupcakes, at fine compromise in my opinion. 

And the food went largely unphotographed. A pretty shocking thing in my world, given the frequency with which I snap food pictures. 

We did, however, reserect the Tater Tot Bar from last year.

I used white cone cups and made the cone holder out of a cardboard box and wrapping paper. 

I also made the Hanging Paper Lanterns, one of my very first post was how to make them.

And I remade the paper Happy Birthday banner. 

I did get a few shots of my Apple Balls, cored and sliced apples held together with rubber band and bakers twine. I replaced the core with string cheese. This will keep them fresh, un-browned and party ready for hours. 

First, core and slice the apples using an apple slicer. 

Remove the core and replace it with string cheese. Reassemble the apple and secure with a rubber band, then tie a ribbon or bakers twine around the rubberband. This will help your apple slices to stay fresh longer, without turning brown. 

If you can, try to find string cheese that is the same size, or just a bit larger than your apple corer. 

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Inside Out Caramel Apples

There has always been a problem with caramel apples. The ratio is off, backwards even. There just isn’t enough caramel and you’re left with, well, a half eaten apple on a stick. I love apples, don’t get me wrong, it’s just not what I signed up for. It’s a let down. Like when you go trick-or-treating at your dentists house and he gives you a tooth brush and trial sized Colgate. Nothing WRONG with it, per se, just not what you were looking for. You want CANDY! Not something good for you, geesh. So, this recipe fixes that issue. More caramel and less apple. Enjoy, and don’t forget to floss.

Inside Out Caramel Apples

3 large Granny Smith apples

1 large lemon

2 cups brown sugar

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 tbs butter

2 tbs light corn syrup

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 cup chopped pecans

Chocolate sauce (optional)

Cut your apples in half and use a melon baller to scoop out the insides, leaving the walls intact at about 1/2 to 1/4 inch thickness.

Squeeze the juice from the lemon onto the apples and allow to set. This will keep them from turning brown right away.

In a sauce pan over high heat, add the brown sugar, butter, heavy cream and corn syrup. Stir until the brown sugar has dissolved. Allow to boil, stirring occasionally, until it reaches 230 degrees, about 7-10 minutes. Remove from heat and add the vanilla, stir continually until it stops bubbling. Allow to cool for about 10-15 minutes.

Using a paper towel, wipe your apples down, removing the lemon juice as much as possible. If the inside of your apple is too wet, the caramel wont stick.

Pour the caramel into the hollowed out apples until just below the top.

Sprinkle with pecans.

Chill in the refrigerator until the caramel has set, about 20 minutes.

Cut into slices and drizzle with chocolate sauce if desired.

I used the same chocolate sauce that I used on these cupcakes, and put it in a Wiltons squeeze bottle.

I feel like I need to add a Caramel Addendum.

This recipe seems to work great for some people, and not so for others. Which, to be honest, completely breaks my heart. I hate that it doenst work for everyone.

It does seem like people are having an easier time with a maple candy recipe, like this one,  in place of the caramel sauce.

You can also make "Cheater Caramel Sauce." I used to make this, years ago, when I was still really new to cooking. Just take 2 cups of store bought caramel squares (out of the wrapper, of course) and melt them in a sauce pan over low heat, with 2 tbs of corn syrup. (Looks like this type of caramel is giving people some problems when it comes to cutting the apples, but for some people it works fine. Make sure your apples are very dry before the caramel and your knife is very sharp!)

If you buy caramel sauce, make sure it is really firm at room temperature or it will just run all over the place once you cut the apples into slices.

Check out my other Halloween Posts:

DIY Glow In the Dark Chosts. Take 5 minutes!