Monday, February 25, 2013

What Would It Be Without a Crisis? -- Twinkies

Just when I thought 2013 would be a cakewalk, or at least a vast improvement on 2012, last week threw me a serious curve. Despite the lovely day off on Monday, a bunch of friend drama, theater "drama" (not the fun kind), and neighbor drama left me super stressed enough--and then the bombshell was dropped on Thursday, when the week wasn't even quite over yet...

As of June, I am jobless.

Without going into many details that are not yet public, my position is being eliminated due to cuts and it does not look like there will be another position at my current company that I could fill. The idea of being job-less and unable to pay my crippling student debt that I'm already struggling with, not to mention my rent, utilities, car payments, insurance, medical bills (who knew getting your gallbladder out would be so pricey?) and feeding my cat, is terrifying. Utterly terrifying. And while I have a tiny bit of savings, it is neither enough to move to another city with more jobs in my field (NYC, potentially LA) unless said job is secured already, nor is it enough to support myself with all of these bills for more than a month or two.

I have a good long while to find a new job, but my mind keeps daring me to succumb to WHAT IF I DON'T??? As we all know, the job market right now sucks. I was so SO lucky to get this job and what if I'm not so lucky in finding another one? I'd love to be a freelance writer, or support myself via my blog, but I am clueless on how to begin, and my blog doesn't get nearly enough traffic currently to do that--according to my Google Ads or whatever it's called I have been at about $13 in revenue for months, heh.

So, yeah. I am trying to have a positive outlook, I'm sending out resumes like wildfire, and hoping for the best. Having my play this weekend helped keep my mind from totally exploding, but today it's back to the real world and the reality that I need to get my butt in gear. For the first time in my life, I am counting the days until summer with a sense of dread instead of longing.

I will keep you updated. In the meantime, I'm sure I'll be stress-baking and giving you all sorts of goodies to look at. Today's offering is Twinkie Cupcakes. One day, out of nowhere, I had a craving for the now-defunct Twinkie. I Googled, and found this extremely simple recipe that tastes very close to the real thing. Probably just as much bad-for-you goodness that the mass-produced Twinkies had, but without the corporate greed, hurrah!

Twinkie Cupcakes
(Recipe from The Domestic Rebel)

1 box yellow cake mix, plus ingredients on back of box
1 small box sugar free/fat free instant French vanilla pudding mix

1 jar marshmallow fluff
1/2 cup butter
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
2 teaspoons very hot water


1 jar (7 oz) marshmallow fluff
2 sticks butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
About 1 bag (32 oz) powdered sugar

Cake: Prepare cake mix according to package directions. Mix in pudding packet. Portion batter evenly among cups, about 2/3 full, and bake for 15-18 mins at 350 degrees F or until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool, then core out the cupcake’s middles.

Filling: Dissolve the salt into hot water and allow to cool. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the marshmallow cream, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla extract until fluffy. Beat in salt water.

Pipe or spoon the filling into each cored cupcake, filling just to the top. Refrigerate.

Frosting: Beat together the fluff, butter and vanilla until combined and creamy. Slowly add powdered sugar in until frosting is light and fluffy.

Pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes. Store frosted cupcakes airtight, preferably in the fridge.

NOTE: I used Can You Stay For Dinner's suggestion to create your own tin foil Twinkie mold for a little of the batter, and the results were a little lumpy but still had the Twinkie feel. I much preferred the cupcake version though--more frosting!


  1. Ugh I'm sorry your week was so rough! That sounds miserable :( Would you work IN Boston?? If so, we should meet up for a drink some time. I come across lots in the marketing field :)


    1. I would totally work in Boston, I love that city. Since I already lived there I would prefer NYC or LA just for something different, but I totally could be convinced, haha. And, I'd love to meet for a drink just to meet you!

  2. Sorry your week was so awful :( On the plus side, there are lots of states that will give you money to move there-- I dont remember offhand which ones or what the stipulations are, but it never hurts to Google it. It's not millions of dollars, but $700 to cover a moving truck is still $700 you don't have to pay :)

    Plus, this is why there is unemployment. Can you pay allll of your bills with it, no. But you can at least feed yourself and your kitty if you happen to need a bit longer to find a job :) Most student loans will allow you to defer if you don't have an income (or even if you just have a crappy income).

    But really, it's okay to freak out for now. It'll come together later, but sometiems I just feel better after I let myself melt down.

    1. I'm sure my rational mind will kick in soon. And I do have ample time, it's just that the job market stinks right now, and I don't have money to move to where the jobs are. But, if I can land a job and THEN move, I could swing it. I will look into states that pay you to move there, I've never heard of that! Though I assume it's probably not the urban areas I'm dreaming of, heh...

  3. ACK! Sorry to hear this, Ashley. If I win the lottery anytime soon, some of it is yours. However, as the chances of that are minute, I will definitely keep you in my prayers. :-(

    On another note... now I want a Twinkie cupcake. Or six. maybe 8.


    1. Aw, thanks. I find myself wanting to forward on those terribly photoshoped pictures of lottery "winners" on Facebook where they swear to share their millions despite knowing they are so very fake. Sigh.

  4. Twinkie cupcakes are totally needed right now, girl! I'm so sorry about the news--you should def. try looking into applying for NYC jobs, some places are cool about out of state interviews, etc. :)

    1. Oh I am for sure applying in NYC, I've wanted to live there for yeeeears

  5. Ugh, so sorry to hear about your job situation. I've been there, and while it definitely sucks, you will find something! Definitely check with temp agencies for work if you're having trouble finding something as June approaches. Oftentimes those jobs can be parlayed into permanent employment. If you're up for a move to DC, check for work down here! We're a bit more recession proof than other cities due to all the government jobs. Also, EVERYONE in DC is from somewhere else, so they're used to people applying from out of state. Good luck!!

  6. I'm so sorry to hear about your job. There was a couple months when I was job searching right after I got married and it was so stressful. You're a talented person and I'm sure something will come through. Hopefully it is sooner rather than later.

  7. Oh sweet I'm so sorry to hear about your job. Rough patches come and go. I'm in a rough patch at the moment too. Keep focused on what makes you happy and if freelance writing is what you want to do - do it. As someone once told me, your dream job does not exist, you must create it!