Monday, October 31, 2011

A Very Happy Halloween

Hello… I am back just to share a Halloween recipe.  These Nutella Rice Krispie Treats with Reese's Pieces are very sinful, gooey and fun play on the traditional rice krispie treats.  I added extra marshmallows so my first batch was very, very gooey. But the second batch was just amazing and very chocolaty.  
Although the nutella flavor isn't as strong as I had hoped but the nutella really adds a creamy rich chocolaty flavor that just enhanced the cocoa krispes and the marshmallows. Anyways, please try it and I promise this will be a new favorite in your home. (Gosh I am out of practice writing) Also I went a little lot crazy on Picnik with the Halloween theme. Enjoy and Happy Halloween!
 Nutella Rice Krispie Treats with Reese's Pieces
adapted from Rice Krispies and a Calamity Kate Original

3 tablespoons   butter or margarine
1 package (10 oz., about 40)   regular marshmallows
- OR -
4 cups   miniature marshmallows
2 1/2 tablespoons Room Temperature Nutella
6 cups   Cocoa Rice Krispies

 In large saucepan melt butter over low heat. Add marshmallows and stir until completely melted and add in Nutella. Remove from heat. Add Kellog's Rice Krispies cereal. Stir until well coated.
Using buttered spatula or wax paper evenly press mixture into 13 x 9 x 2-inch pan coated with cooking spray. Cool. Cut into 2-inch squares. Best if served the same day.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Calamity Kate Strikes Again:

Hello Everyone! This recipe was featured at Newfoundlander with a Heart, but I also wanted to share it with all of you since it really explains a bit more about my nickname. I am so excited to be sharing this fantastic fall recipe with you today.

 I made these for dessert when my aunt N and uncle S came to town. I was on the way to meet my family and I was ok until Calamity Kate hit… I was walking out of my out of my apartment building I fell. I tripped over a rock the size of a plum pit.  I landed on my knees and 2 dozen of these delicious Pumpkin cupcakes  rolled all over the parking lot. Lucky me, they all landed buttercream down. Oy!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Nantucket Pictures

Hello Friends, 
 This week I am posting at Newfoundlander with a Heart so check it out here! But I also wanted to share some great Nantucket vacation pictures. These are from the first night at Madaket Beach. I loved all the driftwood and I have almost 100 shots of just drift wood. We rented a boat for the POPs concert! It was a fabulous night and I can't wait for next year. Please enjoy, Kate

Nantucket POP's Concert has the very best fireworks ever!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

A Time for Change and a Time for Cupcakes 2

Hello Friends!

Thanks for all the support, my hand is much better and I am feeling pretty good.  So on to the cupcakes.  I have been planning to make these cupcakes  since I was in Nantucket. It was to be my back to school Apple-Spice  Cupcake post, perfect right? But I have had an idea brewing for a while and I started to put it into action I returned from Nantucket. With a push  help of my friend Dana, I had applied to IVY Tech. So school and I have never gotten along. We are really sworn enemies and honestly I am terrified of going back. But I am going back to school with a plan. I want to go into nursing. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Greek and Grilled Salads

Hello Everyone!!

I spent all night wishing that I had already finished typing up these recipes in since my hand is really hurting. I fell, again, and spent a few hours at Urgent Care. It turns out that I have nicked a bone in my left hand. Oh well, but I am really excited to share this with you! These are the other recipes from my mom's birthday dinner.  The greek and shrimp salad is from Bon Appetite. And the grilled balsamic salad is one of my favorite  recipes. So my hand really, really hurts so I will just leave you with these awesome dishes! Cheers

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Perfect Last Bite

My mom's birthday was on September 1st. I wanted to make something really special and I had bookmarked this cake nearly a year ago. My mom loves lemon and you know I have blueberries. But this year the time didn't work out, I got called in to work on the day I was supposed to make her cake. So I had to find something to whip up fast for our family dinner/birthday dinner.

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Cuisinart 3-Cup Mini-Prep Plus Food Processor Winner is...

Wow I was truly amazed  how many of you signed up for this fun giveaway. I really didn't expect it and I am really sorry I don't have enough money to buy one for each of you. I wish I could. But thank you all for entering. You made my 1st blog birthday giveaway a hit! 
But on to the winner… drum roll please…………

Thursday, September 8, 2011 Giveaway

Hello Everyone,
I have a new giveaway for you. This giveaway is curtsy of  I have worked with before. They made my beautiful blog business cards, they are shiny, bright and I love the curved corners (die cut). I can't tell you how many compliments I got on my blog business cards  while at the Bloggy Boot Camp. I also really love that uses vegetable and soy-based inks with lower levels of VOCs! Yay everyone benefits including the environment!
This is a mock up of my blog business card
The winner will receive 50 pcs Brochure that are printed outside and inside on 8.5" x 11", 100lb Paper Gloss and with folding (Half Fold, Trifold/Letterfold, Z-Fold, Roll Fold, Accordion Fold). And luckily for you there is *free shipping and a super fast 2 Business Days turnaround. I am also really excited that I  will receive custom brochures for hosting. 
This giveaway is sponsored by, an online printing company. I have  and will not receive any money but for hosting I will also get custom brochures printing. Please see more information about business cards, postcards and all custom  and  online printing at at

This giveaway will run from today until Monday, September 12th at midnight
, Eastern Indiana time. The winner will be announced by Wednesday September 14th and I will contact the winner by email, and the winner will have 48 hours to respond. If there is no reply, another winner will be drawn using and notified. 

If you are already a follower of Calamity Kate's Kitchen, Twitter, or Facebook, please leave comments so you can still be counted in for the giveaways!  
Good Luck!

To Enter

You must leave a separate comment for EACH entry for it to count in each giveaway. Also you must enter into each the giveaways with your email address on EACH comment, otherwise the entry will be withdrawn! 

Become a follower of Calamity Kate =  1 entry

Add Calamity Kate to your favorites page on facebook=  1 entry

Write a post about this giveaway on your blog, then leave a comment with the URL where the post is located = 2 entry

Tweet about this giveaway including the URL (a tiny URL is also fine) Also include Calamity Kate's Kitchen and UPrinting = 1 entry

Link your blog or website to Calamity Kate = 1 entry

Become a Calamity Kate Sponsor for 1 month = 2 entries

Restriction: Limited to *US residents 18 years old and above only

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Madaket Tacos Del Mar

Hello friends,  before I share some of my vacation photos and an amazing Nantucket recipe, I would like to remind you that we still have the Cuisinart® 3-Cup Mini-Prep Plus Food Processor giveaway. This giveaway has been extended to  September 10th at midnight. The winner will be announced Monday September 12th  So if you haven't entered yet you still have a few extra days to do so.  Thanks!

Also check out a giveaway at the Cooking Underwriter.  We both have been celebrating out 1 year anniversary with giveaways and Shelia has taken a page out of my book (I am so flattered) and purchased this fabulous The Best of Gourmet: 20th Anniversary Edition.  So please go check out the Cooking Underwriter and sign up to win!

Oh, do I have an amazing recipe to share with you... this comes straight from Madaket Beach in Nantucket.  My brother and I arrived to Nantucket around 3:30 and were greeted with fresh beach air and the sent of jasmine and honeysuckle. We were also greeted by my (tanned) dad and 2 lobster rolls with our names on them.  (Check out Calamity Kate on Facebook to see a picture of the lobster roll) The drive to Wild Rose Cottage (our home in Nantucket) was great, with the windows open and lobster in our mouths we were on vacation!!!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

September Mornings

What a stunning Tuesday Morning. I decided to share my favorite thing about cool  September mornings with you on this gorgeous day!

I just wanted to share a cup of tea and a slice of toast with you on this fine, cool September Morning. Fall and Winter are my favorite times of year. I love cool nights and chilly mornings. I love falling asleep with layers upon layers of blankets and I really love waking up in a pile of warm blankets. Most of the time I burrow so deep into those covers that only my nose gets cold. And I especially love waking up to make a cup of hot, steaming tea.  As you may know, I do not like coffee at all. I am a tea girl. 

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Last Few True Summer Days and a Few Good Books

Hello Friends, 

I am so glad to be back home, although I wanted to bring the ocean with me. Too bad it doesn't travel well. Anyways I spent my vacation reading great books. When I actually sit down and read I go through books like crazy… in a week by the sea I read  8.5 books. Since I only brought 3 with me we ended up at a great bookstore and also a used bookstore (where I got 4 books and a fabulous cookbook for $11.75! All the money went to the island hospital)
I did start the book, The HelpSo far The Help is awesome very easy to get into. It reads so beautifully. I can not put it down…so in my mind is is a guaranteed classic. An amazing book and story. So while I am reading a very southern book, I thought about one of my favorite southern cookbooks, Jan Karon's Mitford Cookbook & Kitchen Reader.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Finding Myself in Calamity Kate's Kitchen and Blogalicious Giveaway

Calamity Kate's Kitchen turned 1 year old today (not really today, but on August 23rd) I decided to push back this anniversary until today. Many of you don't know this, but I used to have a blog, before CKK. It was called Not Just Vanilla (NJV) and it was a total failure.   After NJV I took a lot of time to figure out what when so very wrong. So  I quit the blog and took a break. I spent the time disappointed about ditching NJV and wondering why I ended up hating the blog I had once loved.  What I figured out is that I was trying to be who I though a food blogger should be, but I wasn't myself.  NJV took all of my energy and even made me hate/avoid the kitchen for a while, it is really hard trying to be someone you aren't.  But after 6 months of figuring what went wrong I decided to try doing it right. And so Calamity Kate's Kitchen was born. 

I have figured out who I am with this blog. Not just who I am in my blog, but who I am in my everyday world. So I am here to tell you that a 1 year later I am the happiest, healthiest and most sure version of myself. Thanks to Calamity Kate's Kitchen and you my very dear friends. Your comments,  tweet emails and notes on Facebook have inspired me and  each one feels like a big pat on the back.  Thank you all for your love and support. Thanks to my family and friends, the awe inspiring SITS Gals and the lovely ladies at For The Love of BlogsAnd a special thank you to Chrissy, Courtney, Katrina, Roberta and Sheila the best blog friends a girl could wish for!
                                                        Cheers, Kate

Cuisinart® 3-Cup Mini-Prep Plus Food Processor

 Berry Blue, Lemon, Plum, Pomegranate or Parsley

This giveaway is from me and not Cuisinart or Sur La Table.
 The winner will choose the color.
You must leave a separate comment for EACH entry for it to count in each giveaway. Also you must enter into each the giveaways with your email address on EACH comment, otherwise the entry will be withdrawn! 

The Cuisinart® 3-Cup Mini-Prep Plus Food Processor giveaway will run from August 30th 2011 to September  7th 2011  at midnight, Eastern Indiana time. The winner will be announced by Friday September 9th and I will contact the winner by email, and the winner will have 48 hours to respond. If there is no reply, another winner will be drawn using and notified. If you are already a follower of Calamity Kate's Kitchen, Twitter, or Facebook, please leave comments so you can still be counted in for the giveaways!  
Good Luck!

To Enter:
Become a follower of Calamity Kate =  1 entry
Follow Calamity Kate on Twitter =  1 entry
Follow and like Calamity Kate on Facebook =  1entry
Add Calamity Kate to your favorites page on facebook=  1 entry
Write a post about this giveaway on your blog, then leave a comment with the URL where the post is located = 2 entry
Tweet about this giveaway including the URL (a tiny URL is also fine)
Link your blog or website to Calamity Kate = 1 entry
Become a Calamity Kate Sponsor for 1 month = 2 entries

All comments for this giveaway must be left on this post please!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Sweet and Spicy Cupcakes

Welcome friends… I am back and tan (in a slightly raccoon-y pattern)  and ready to bake, 

I have so much to tell you from my vacation and SITS Bloggy Boot Camp. But unfortunately that isn't going to happen today… I still have 721 pictures to sort through along with at least 100 business cards and 15 pages of notes from Bloggy Boot Camp.  But instead of all that I thought I would tempt you with a bit of Cinnamon and  Honey Cupcakes with divine buttercream. (Honestly the buttercream is so amazing and truly luscious that I would most likely skip the cake in favor of a spoon.) But check out what my friend Katrina has deliciously decided to do with buttercream. It is breathtaking and this would be a perfect buttercream to make with it. Check it out here. Oh you are in for such a treat!!! 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Sand Dollar Almond Cookies

Hello from Chicago and SITS Bloggy Boot Camp!

These cookies may look familiar to you. They are actually an updated Harvest Moon Cookie. Remember these? Well I have up dated the recipe a bit and temporarily chucked out the name Harvest Moon for the more beachy title of Sand Dollar Almond Cookies!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Bribe me with Brownies… Please

I spent the few days before my dad's surgery baking. I made cookies and these awesome brownies.  I knew we would all need to nosh (snack) while in the waiting room and the remainder of the treats would make a great gift/bribe for the nurses. As you guys have read, I have spent a lot of time in hospitals and to get an extra pudding its no problem but if you want extra hot blankets or a VCR (remember my references are from 1995) or a different meal a little gift to the nurses goes a long way. In this case all we needed the nurse to do was show us how to change the temperature in the room. But everyone loved these brownies.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Going Going Gone….!

Hi Friends, 

As you read this I am on the airplane winging my way to the east coast and my vacation and will return on the 19th for SITS Chicago Bloggy Boot Camp. I wanted to share some of my favorite summer and vacation recipes with you while I am living it up on the beach in Nantucket There are always a few special summertime foods that so I look forward to enjoying every summer, my Mom's Blueberry Crisp is fantastic. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Awesome August

Good Morning! Today is August 1st and that means I am going to have a very busy month.  In 13 days I (yay) leave for a very needed vacation to Nantucket. I will be joining my parents, brother and cousins for a week in  this lovely cottage. Then I fly  into Chicago to attend the SITS Bloggy Bootcamp on the 20th.  Then on the 26th someone has a blogaversary
 to celebrate…can you guess who that is? Yay its Calamity Kate's Kitchen's 1st blogaversary.

I love the trips to Nantucket. My cousins and their 2 adorable kids rented the house behind us. The kids would wait till our shades were raised in the morning and come in. I got in the habit of making breakfast. I would make pancakes with cut up marshmallows for E and the rest of us would eat my blueberry sauce on our pancakes.  I am getting excited about Nantucket so I decided to make a batch of pancakes and blueberry sauce. Enjoy… this blueberry sauce is so delicious,  fresh and just amazing if I do say so myself.   Cheers!  
Pancakes with blueberry sauce

Thursday, July 28, 2011

No More Blah Breakfast

I love pumpkin and in my opinion it shouldn't just be a Fall food. I crave and cook with pumpkin all year round. As soon as pumpkin shows up on the grocery store shelves I grab as much as I can. This year I ended up with almost 30 (15-ounces) cans. I have about 8 cans left on my pantry shelves now. Pumpkin isn't just for pumpkin
 pies. I have made pasta with pumpkin sauce, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin cupcakes, etc. 

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Laying it All Out on the Table: Why I hate the 4th of July…Part 2

Dear Friends, 

Thanks you for your many suggestions  on how to write my story. I am going to take Roberta's idea and write this in as many parts as needed. Also here is a few links for more information
Link 1  
Link 2 
Link 3

So I left off with finding out that I had a pituitary tumor, a Craniopharyngioma, and that surgery was the only option for removal. Of course when you find out that your body has betrayed you, your life changes. As I found out many things went though my head. It was like watching a movie in slow motion. I was worried about what would happen to me, it I would live or die. What would happen to my parents. Did I have cancer (thankfully my tumor wasn't cancerous but many are) ? Would I loose my hair? What kind of life would I lead if I didn't die… Honestly I was mostly concerned about my hair in the beginning. I wanted to keep it, not to have chemo or shave it. The more I thought about the surgery and my tumor it all kind of made sense….much  later that night there was an aha moment. This is why I was different, this is why I am fat, this is why I drink and got to the bathroom all the time. This is what was wrong with me and this is what is going to change my life. Everything started to fall into place but it didn't make me feel better. I only felt like more of an outsider, more of a freak… more out of place than ever before.

A little side note: A few months before we found out about my tumor my dad got fed up with me waking up every few hours and drinking constantly. As I said I drank icy cold water many times each night and then peed. This was a crazy.  And apparently I had woken my dad up doing this crazy cycle. So dad told me that there was no reason to drink that much and that I wasn't to go to the kitchen that night. If I wanted a drink I could use the bathroom sink.  That night was awful for me. Icy cold water was the only way I could drink water and no matter how long that bathroom sink ran it was never cold enough for me.  But I made it though that night (I finally snuck downstairs and filled many water bottles with ice water and wrapped them in a towel and  snuck back to my bedroom. I don't recall if my dad ever found out about my trip to the kitchen that night but it bothered me for a really long time. I knew not everyone drank as much as me but I was always thirsty. Even when I was drinking… 

A little later that night but still way too soon, a surgeon came in to talk to me about my surgery. All I remember about him was  his totally overgrown beard. He told me about 2 options for my surgery. Option 1: take out the tumor though my nose if it was small enough or Option 2: slice across my skull and pull down my face and go from above. I wasn't keen on either option. I barely wanted to shake hands with this guy let alone let him out his hands in my brain.  I am really lucky that my parents wanted me to find a surgeon that I felt comfortable with, so I transferred from Riley Children's hospital to Methodist Hospital for my surgery. Due to the size of my tumor option 2 was the only way to go.  

The next 2  weeks were filled with hormone tests, blood tests, doctors visits We all learned about the pituitary gland, what it does and where it is located and how exactly they get to it. 
So I have been to tons and tons of doctors and for some really stupid reason they talk about your body like fruit and vegetables for the most part. I know that your pituitary is a few cells that float back into your skull during your 3rd month in utero and in my case a few extra cells followed along. The pituitary is normally the size of a green pea and at the age of 15 my tumor was wrapped around the pituitary gland and it was the size of a large egg or tomato. 

As much as I begged and pleaded with my parents they wouldn't let me out of the surgery or even let me have it postponed. I had to start school in August and they wanted me to have plenty of time to recover.  So my 2 weeks of testing ended and it was time for surgery. My surgery was to remove my tumor and I think it took between 4 and 5 hours. If you want more details on the surgery please check this link out here.

I woke up many hours later in ICU, blind since my eyes had swollen shut. I was blind for at least 3 days, maybe longer. I wasn't allowed to drink anything the night before my surgery so I was completely dehydrated and thirstier than ever. The nurses in ICU rubbed my teeth and tongue with a moist lemon flavored stick and I tried to suck out all the moisture. One of the nurses offered me some ice and just a tiny amount of water which was gone much too fast. So I was given just a bit more. I kept drinking as much as they would give me until my stomach got a little too upset. You really can't eat or even drink after surgery.  The nurses changed my bed and then knocked me out. 

When I came to again Mom and Dad were with me holding my hands and talking to me. I found out that the surgery went ok and they actually removed most or all of the pituitary along with the tumor. And I was on all but one of the hormone replacement medications.

After the ICU I was taken to the children's ward and I thankfully got a private room which was next to the kids playroom. Unfortunately the stereo was on my wall and it was always too loud for me. I heard the bass constantly. But I had my parents with me and tons of visitors, cards, stuffed animals and flowers in my room to make it cheery. 

I was finally allowed to eat real food and so I asked my mom for an Arni's Junior salad and Boston Market  . So after my salad my parents when back to their hotel and I went to sleep.  I awoke later with the worst migraine I had ever had. The doctors and nurses rushed me to the MRI to see what had happened to me… it was my dinner. So I was put on a no/low salt diet for the remainder of my recovery.  Apparently after a  brain  surgery you brain swells. And my salty dinner had made my poor brain swell even further.  

I finally was released from the hospital and sent home. Look for the next installment on Thursday. 
Cheers,   Kate

Sunday, July 17, 2011

What to do...

Dear Friends, 

I know I promised part two of my pituitary tumor story but I am having a hard time writing it. I have 16 years of stories, life and craziness to sift though. Not to mention all the medical back and forth, from doctor to doctor and medicine to medicine. I want to tell you as much as you like and want to hear… so tell me. Should I tell you about my surgery or my time back at school after surgery? Or would you like to hear about the pituitary conference I attended or possible how I am living with this today. So I thought I would ask your opinion. What do you want to hear?  

Thanks for the help… the post will show up on Thursday.  
                        Cheers, Kate

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Laying it All Out on the Table: Why I hate the 4th of July

Hey friends, I know its been quite a long time since you heard from me, this is why… I hate the 4th of July. It is the one day every year I am in a rotten mood, I cry and get mad and throw things… I am not fun to be around.  

My life was pretty average, but at age 15 that all changed. It changed on July 4th 1995.
Me as a baby

Monday, June 27, 2011

New Sponser Introduction: La Dulce Vida - The Sweet Life

Feature Blog Post: You and your blog:

Please welcome Adriana from La Dulce Vida - The Sweet Life

Also find Adriana on Facebook and  Twitter.

Adriana is one of my new sponsors this month. She won my giveaway at FTLOB. Adriana describes herself as a "A bohemian mother of three that is inspired by all the beautiful things in life... Art, photography, films, love, music, food, fashion,parenting, travel and culture." My absolute favorite thing about this blog is the pictures, they are incredibly moving and full of life. they feature everything from her beautiful family to rain, restaurants, and lovely ocean views.

Please head over to La Dulce Vida - The Sweet Life and welcome Adriana with a comment. Cheers, Kate

Friday, June 24, 2011

New Sponser Introduction: Falling into Light

Please welcome Zayda from Falling into Light!

Also find Zayda on  Twitter and Etsy

Please help me welcome Zayda as one of my new sponsors this month. She won my giveaway at FTLOB. Zayda's blog, Falling into Light is an total awesome, easy going, fun-filled blog about Zayda and her life, photography, and her little sweet doggie named Chelsea. So please welcome Zayda and wish Chelsea Happy Birthday with a comment when  you hop over to visit.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

A Tale of Two Cupcakes

I made these cupcakes along with smore's brownies, blueberry muffins , and chocolate chip,  pecan, banana bread for a friend's birthday. I heard these cupcakes were the hit of my gift basket. 

These cupcakes are a party in themselves!