Sharing is caring…

I was sitting with a group of mom friends and one of them was mentioning how they wished the housing market was better right now (who doesn’t?). Come to find out she wants to sell her four bedroom home and upgrade. I asked why the heck would she do that? Well we might want another child. I said, okay? You have two. Why do you need a 5 bedroom home? And she went in to how ideally she would really like a 6 bedroom home or at least 5 bedroom and a den. A master bedroom, a room for each kid, a playroom (what are bedrooms for?), and guest bedroom.

Growing up we never lived in anything larger than a 3 bedroom home. My parents now retired live in a two bedroom home (with a tiny, and I mean tiny loft up top…it’s an A frame). There were 5 of us. My mom, my dad, me, my two brothers, and our various dogs and random animals I would beg to have from a turtle to rabbits. My parents had their room. I had mine (I was the only girl…if I had a sister I am quite sure we would have shared a room). My brothers shared a room (and not just as kids…as teenagers as well). They had extra-long twin beds (they were tall boys). The “guest” bedroom was my room when people would come and I would get kicked to the couch. My parents did this because they did this thing called live within your means. You might have heard of it?

Not saying that my friend can’t probably afford a 6 bedroom house, both her and her spouse make good money, I just don’t see why you want to add more finical burden to yourself in today’s economy. I’m not sure when the idea of each child should have their own room. Sharing? Ever hear of that? It’s a good lesson to teach kids.

One thing you will definitely want to share are these caramel apples. This is the first time I have ever made a caramel that used sweetened condensed milk and I LOVE it. It gives it a little dulce de leche flavor as well. So nice. Yes, it’s harder than just melting the Kraft caramels down like we did as a kid with some milk…but it’s worth it. If you have any leftover (I did) you can simply spray a pan with baking spray and pour it in. They set up nicely as just plain caramels!

Mini Caramel Apples

25 mini apples (this is a guess) or 12 big apples (also a guess) as I did a mix of both big and small
2 C brown sugar
1 C corn syrup
1/2 C butter
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Combine the first 3 ingredients. After butter is melted stir in the milk.

Cook to soft ball (230 F degrees). Stir constantly.

Stir in 1 tsp. vanilla.

Remove from heat. Dip apples into the caramel, and then roll in nuts if desired, I used mini chocolate chips.

Let set up on a cookie sheet. Place in refrigerator if needed.

From Your Home-based


  1. From his birth until I was 11 or 12, I shared a room with my younger brother — sometimes also with our mother — most of that time sleeping on floors. Then my mom gave up her room to me, and she slept on a fold-out couch in the living room. Then my brother moved to the basement and my mom moved to his room. Then she got engaged and we moved to a 3-bedroom house where my brother and the fiancé’s daughter alternated sharing a room [when she visited, my brother slept in the basement]. Then the engagement ended and we had to move in with my gramma, who was running a sort of makeshift boarding house in her home — so I roomed with my aunt, my brother roomed with two tenants, my mom and another tenant slept in the living room. My mom moved to her friends’ house, and several tenants rotated in and out. Finally, my own fiancé moved in and we stayed there for a few months until we’d saved enough for our own place. We just celebrated our 11-year wedding anniversary and my mom has been living in our basement for three years.

    Being poor sucks, and your friend should thank her lucky stars they even have enough rooms for the people who are in their family now.

  2. Those are fabulous! Sharing is caring, indeed.

    In today’s economy, one can be happy to still have enough money to live correctly. Financially burdening oneself is quite crazy…



  3. These look so wonderful! I always want to make caramel apples and never do. Eating them is more effort than it’s worth- I prefer to just eat the caramel straight! Yours looks fantastic…

  4. Sharing a room helps a child adjust to having a roommate if s/he lives in a dorm in college!

  5. Katie Rose says:

    Perfect timing with this recipe! I was planning on making caramel apples with my sisters on Saturday and the recipe I was going to use looks much more complicated than this, guess which I’m going to use instead? :-) (I’ll try to remember to let you know how I like it).

    Also, heck yes! Live within your means people!! We lived in a little three bedroom house my entire life (my parents and some younger siblings still live there) but guess what? There were EIGHT kids. Four boys, four girls, four bunk beds. We had the girls room and the boys room and my parents room. The rest of the house wasn’t that big either, no family room, den, great room, finished basement etc. Just your basic living room, dining room, and kitchen. Would it have been nice to have my own room? Absolutely. Could we afford an upgrade? Nope, so we stayed put. There are a lot of life lessons you should have to learn as a kid, including how to share your personal space with people you love (or like or know ;-) ). And just because you CAN upgrade, does not mean that you should.

    Perhaps this is why we have such rampant Peter Pan Syndrome in our society. Mom and Dad give me everything and take care of me so why should I grow up, have goals and dreams of my own? Life is already good enough right here so I don’t want anything to change. Okay, enough rant. Suffice it to say, yes, I totally agree with you. Stepping off soapbox now. :-D

  6. I know what you mean. It seems ridiculous that people live in huge houses when they don’t really need to. Count me in though as one of the Mom’s who always says… I wish we had a bigger house– ONLY for the purpose of having a huge kitchen and outdoor entertaining area though!! Who cares about bedrooms!

    I love caramel apples. I’ve never been one to be able to eat it normally though. have to cut it into pieces and nibble that way.

  7. Those look great! I love caramel apples.

    I was also taught to live within my means and that means we can live in a townhouse and not a single family home. It’s ok, we love our home. Sometimes I would just like to be irresponsible, but then I know that won’t make anything better!

  8. I was the lucky one with my own room. My two younger brothers shared a room until they fought so much that a room was built for me in the basement (by family). Our house wasn’t big (my parents still live there) but it was big enough. I really don’t understand the idea of a huge house either, especially when you can’t afford it. While reading your story the thing that amused me was that the reason why the economy crashed a few years ago and the housing market is so bad is because people were living outside their means.
    And the caramel apples look terrific, perfect for this time of year. They just give you that warm fuzzy feeling for some reason (even though they’re neither warm nor fuzzy :)). Just a note, you can also make the caramel with honey rather than corn syrup. I did this earlier this year and it was really good.

  9. I get the appeal of a larger home, it would be great to have a guest room and an office, but it doesn’t make sense in the long run. How often do I really need a guest room? Maybe once a month? And an office? Currently my laptop sits in my kitchen, where my family spends our time. It would be nice to have a dedicated room for office stuff but when we did have one it just became a room where junk got piled.

  10. Hah! 3 bedrooms, 6 kids. My family (yes, the kids, too) eventually built a 7 bedroom, 4 bathroom house, but it was just as the oldest left for college. Sharing made me a better person. My husband lived in a 4 bedroom for 4 people – he hates to share. My in-laws have a 3-bedroom for 2 people – weird!!!
    And the apples look perfect – I need them for Saturday. Between them and the Peanut Butter Cup Cakes I am ready for the party! Thanks!!!

  11. So freakin’ cute! Love them. If only I had a candy therm. I busted mine a while back. :/

  12. Yeah, while it’s always nice to dream of more space, that’s more to clean up too! We just sacrificed our guest room so our kids could have a room each. We still have a bunk bed in their shared room though so I suppose we could always kick the kid back to the bunk when guests come. Or we’ll just put the aero bed in the living room like most people do for guests I think. ;)
    Adorable apples, I love caramel! I will have to introduce these to the kiddos. I’ll have to use Lyle’s instead of corn syrup but I like it better anyway. :)

  13. Sharing IS caring! Especially love those little chocolate chips. My sister shared a room for a couple of years and then my parents gave me their room and took over the living room for their bedroom! It was a rancher, and we added doors so it worked alright, but that is how you use space!!

  14. When I was growing up, my mom had her own bedroom, my 2 sisters and myself shared a double bed in the second bedroom and my brother slept on the couch, We were quite happy. Sometimes I wish for back in the day when we knew what family was really about, the more room you have the more you lose contact and closeness with your family. Thanks for sharing how to make carmel and carmel apples.

  15. So cute! I haven’t seen any mini apples, but will be on the lookout! Caramel apples would be adorable in miniature form!

    amen to the sharing comments :)

  16. I think sharing living space is part of what makes us human. I knew girls at college who had no clue how to share a room with someone else. That’s so sad!

  17. i literally just bought the stuff to make caramel apples today. I am just going to melt down caramels because i have never tried it but next time i am totally going to try your recipe.

    love the pic btw!

  18. I don’t really see why someone would need a dedicated guest bedroom. How many guests are you expecting? But different strokes for different folks.

  19. As a female who shared a room with her brother for her ENTIRE LIFE….I have to say that complaining about not having an extra room seems kinda silly.

    These caramel apples…so not silly. So delicious, in fact.

  20. I think I have all the ingredients including apples that I need to do something with before there is nothing left to do with them but make apple sauce. Yay!
    I shared a room with my sister most of the time we lived at home with my folks. I didn’t want to share with her, I slept in various rooms of the house, usually on the floor. I was having sleep issues so it was easier that way. My kids,1 boy and 1 girl, shared a room when they were little and both under 5. We bought a 4 bedroom house with the plan for the 4th to be a guest room/ office since the husband was working from home a lot at the time. If there wasn’t that need, we would have gone with a 3 bedroom. Though when we were looking there weren’t many 3 bedroom houses around.
    Nothing wrong with sharing rooms. Forces the kids to get along or work things out.

  21. Thanks for that. I know we can’t be the only ones with kids who share a room. btw, they are perfectly happy to do so, esp the youngest, not that they have a choice :) I’m not sure where the idea came in where everyone has to have their own room. What a privilege, really! A good portion of the world lives in one room homes and sleep on floors. But honestly, if we could afford it we would likely have more space.

  22. OHHH I just did a caramel apple party – thanks for the recipe – the kids loved them!

    And I too grew up in a 3 bedroom house – and my house now costs 150K less then my sister, and we make more money????

    But I understand where your friend is coming from, especially if she can afford it. Once kids are around they occupy the whole house (kids won’t play in their rooms) – and you feel squished in and no place to call your own “to get away”. If she can afford it – good for her! If not, you just suck it up.

  23. Katie Rose says:

    Just wanted to pop back and say the recipe was fabulous! It was probably the best caramel I’ve ever made (especially since I only had to make it once instead of my history of burn a batch, start again and get it right the second time).

    Two of my sisters came over to help me and the kids. We took your recipe a step further and proceeded to chill the caramel apples and then dip them in melted chocolate followed by crushed Oreos. I’ve never had a caramel apple before and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to buy one now because there is no way a bought one will ever measure up. Thanks for the great recipe for our new fall tradition!

  24. Your apples look delicious! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! I am making a batch for Thanksgiving treats this week.

  25. Katie Rose says:

    Okay, I know it’s an older recipe but I just wanted to say, my sisters and I have now made a tradition out of making these caramel apples every fall for the past three years. LOVE the recipe! Just wanted to point out a bit of missing info though for anyone else who makes it. The first year I made it without a hitch. The second year…something went wrong. The lack of cooking temp (high, med, low) must have thrown me off and I think that I cooked it too high. It turned out so-so, kind of had an odd ‘burnt marshmallow’ taste to it, but we used it because we weren’t starting over and as far as the kids are concerned sugar is sugar. This year I cooked it lower and slower than I think I did last year and it turned out marvelously. So, heads up for anyone who reads this, don’t cook it too high! Have patience! It will turn out beautifully if you do. :-)

  26. Marie Nixon says:

    What size can of sweetened condensed milk should I buy? Thank you.

  27. I’ve only ever seen it in one size 15oz

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