Just To See You Smile

Seeing someone smile out of authentic happiness is one of the best things in the world.  Knowing that someone is full of joy makes ME smile.  But even better than that is when you, yourself, make someone smile.  A smile induced by your own actions is the best kind.  This week I had the most wonderful privilege of bringing a smile to someone’s face in such a fun way!

Our good friends Cody & Kristen are in the process of adopting a beautiful little girl from China.  It’s been a long process with the possibility of hang ups at several turns.  Recently they have been dealing with a hang up that involved the circuit court records department here in Bend since this is where Cody grew up.  Ultimately a very kind woman went way out of her way to make sure that what was near impossible for Cody to do from all the way across the country, was accomplished.  Sometimes you meet people in life that go above and beyond, and while what you really want to do is give them a big hug, it’s not always possible.

So instead, Cody & Kristen asked me to bake something sweet for the ladies in the Deschutes County Circuit Court Records Department.  And that’s exactly what I did.

These little morsels of goodness are Kahlua Fudge Bites.  But if I’m being honest, what I love even more are the cute purple gingham cups that they are in.  In addition to these, I brought them lunch from local favorite, Croutons.

It was too much fun!  I walked into their office and upon seeing the basket of yum in my arms, smiles were seen across the room.  Being the deliverer of a gift from someone when they are least expecting it brings more joy than I can even try to create on my own.  And even better than this, knowing that they helped my sweet friends with one of the most important events in their lives made me love them just as much!  Thanks Cody & Kristen, for letting me share in your gratitude towards these ladies!

There are several different kinds of days that occur in life.  Some days are filled with routine.  Some days bring laughter that literally hurts.  Some days make you fall in love all over again.  Every once in a while you get a day where you wish you could crawl in a hole and wake up the next morning starting fresh.  A few days see success, and a few see failure.  There are always a few days in life that bring sorrow and turmoil.  Sometimes you experience days that feel like eternity…

At the end of this day joy prevailed, and smiles were seen…and those are the best kind of days.

Kahlua Fudge Bites–recipe courtesy of Fine Cooking

(To be made for someone for no other reason that just to see them smile) 🙂

Yields: 8 dozen 1-inch squares

  • 12oz. (1 1/2 cups) unsalted butter; more for the pan
  • 9 oz. (2 cups) flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 oz. (1 cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 cups very firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 Tbsp. Kahlua or other coffee-flavored liqueur, or 1 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract


  • 6 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3 oz. (6 Tbsp) unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces
  • 1 Tbsp. light corn syrup
  1. Position rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 325 degrees.  Lightly grease the bottom and sides of a 9×13 pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt to blend.  Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally.  Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the cocoa powder until smooth.  Whisk in the brown sugar until blended.  Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking until just blended.  Whisk in the Kahlua or vanilla along with the last egg.  Sprinkle the flour over the mixture and stir with a rubber spatula until just blended.  Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and spread it evenly.  Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few small, moist clumps sticking to it, about 30 minutes.  (Don’t overbake or the squares won’t be fudgy.) Transfer the pan to a rack to let cool completely.
  3. Make the chocolate gaze.  In a medium bowl, melt the chocolate, butter, and corn syrup in a microwave or over barely simmering water, whisking until smooth.  Pour the glaze onto the center of the cooled, uncut fudge bars.  Using an offset spatula, spread the glaze evenly to cover completely.  Refrigerate until the glaze is set, about 30 minutes.  Cut into 1-inch squares.

6 thoughts on “Just To See You Smile

  1. Connie Brotzman says:

    I know this is selfish on my part….but I’m hoping someday I’ll open my door and you’ll be standing there with a little box of something delectable…just so I can hug you to pieces!

    You are such a joy.

  2. Sweet J says:

    Wow, those look good!

    You know, a parent always wants their children to be better people, the kind of people that others cherish. Your mom and I are so fortunate to even know you and your sister let alone make the claim the two of you are ours.

    Annie, thanks for being such a blessing for so many. 🙂

  3. Katie Huff says:

    You can show up at my door with goodies any day! 🙂 But really, just reading this made me smile. You’re a wonderful person, Miss Annie, and our lives are better for having you in it! 🙂

  4. Camille says:

    Oh dear Annie,

    What an amazing lady you have become!! I can still remember many many many years ago standing in your moms kitchen eating those lemon cookies that were to die for, oh and the fact that you got me hooked on rice! Rice of all things for some reason it always tasted better coming from your kitchen. Your stories are always an inspiration to me!!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s