Thursday, April 30, 2009


What is this child doing?

Answer:  I have no idea.  

But it sure is a treat to have a nice warm day for rolling around in the grass!


It seems to be the running theme in my neighborhood lately to make jam.

Thanks to Kammi (Thanks Kammi!!) I learned how a few months ago.  I figured I'd put my new skill to use and teach the kids something new as well, so a few weeks ago we made more strawberry jam.  

I found myself fascinated by the richness of the color.

The kids were not quite so fascinated at my calls of "keep stirring", 

"No, you're not done yet", 

and "are you still stirring?" 

"Please keep stirring!"

But after all that wonderful stirring, into the jars it goes.  

Then you clean up all the jam that you spilled on the counter because you were paying more attention to not dropping the camera than to aiming as you poured and you actually poured the jam in front of the jar.  

Then you actually pour it INTO the jar.  Much better.  

Look how pretty!  

(I know.  That would be prettier if I'd cleaned up the rim of the jar.  Stop being picky.)

Apparently every once in a while you get a defective jar that upon turning upside down explodes all over your counter.  Loverly.  
This is where a herd comes in handy.  Just yell "every body grab a spoon!"  and though they all come out of it on a sugar high, they are happy.  
Then you send them outside to run laps around the yard.  

And yes, I use giant jars.  Have you seen how many kidlets run loose through this house?  I'm lucky if the big jars last a full week!

Now I have a hankering to go bake bread.  
Which at four loaves at a time will still only survive roughly 48hrs in this place.  

Speaking of M&Ms

The hubby was having a particularly frustrating day a few weeks ago.  

He knows that when I'm having a particularly frustrating day, I turn to my M&Ms.  There has always been a slight mockery at this habit of mine from my dear husband.  Although I will argue that it serves a dual purpose;  Not only does it make me feel better, but it is a very plain warning sign to my dear hubby when he walks in the door from work and hears a handful of M&Ms clinking against my teeth.  Besides, it scores him bonus points when he brings them home to me.
Therefore I suppose it could be reasoned that:

M&Ms = happiness.

Imagine my surprise when *I* heard the clinking coming from the closet in our bedroom.  Could it be?  My dear sweet love then walked out looking like this:

Then he tried to hide in the bathroom under the guise of "I need to comb the boys' hair."  Sure. 

Wow!  Check out those cheeks!

Looks like he's storing up for the winter!

So what did he have to say for himself?
"Wow-that really does help you feel better!"

See.  Told ya.  

The Great M&M experience

I am part of an online community that involves a group of women who all had babies about the same time last year (late June, early Aug).  A few weeks ago, shortly after Easter, someone started a "confessions" type on conversation surrounding what you may or may not have given baby for Easter.  The big question, of course, being "did you let your baby have chocolate?"  

You may be surprised to find that I did not actually give Charli any chocolate for Easter.  Although after I just typed that I have a weird hankering to get her to a chocolate factory.....

Anyway-I mentioned that after that conversation I was tempted to let her have and M&M and see how she reacted.  Besides, who really thinks it's a good idea to not let your baby have any type of sweets at all before 1yr but then give them their own cake and let them go to town?  Hello!  Talk about a shock to the system!  So how do we solve that?  No sweets at all?  PSHAW!  No.  Break them in gently of course.....

Thus, I broke out the camera, stuck Charli in the high chair, and handed her the beloved M&M.  (yellow, just in case you were wondering)

I'm going to stop you right here and tell you that the photos here rival the # of photos I once saw on someone's blog of feeding their first child rice cereal.   (They had 18.  Yes, 18 photos of their 5 month old eating rice cereal.  Wow.)  I am posting 12 photos.  Get over it.  Besides, who rivals this cuteness??


Back to the point:
Going in for the kill
In it goes!
Checking out the texture
Still not quite sure how to go about smashing this this
Look!  She's hypnotized as she crushes it!
Still working on it, with a little bit of dribble
Oh sweet chocolate overload!  
Savoring the moment

Thinking back on the chocolatey goodness

Friday, April 24, 2009

Heaven in my kitchen

Well, unless you're diabetic or on a diet or something.  Then I suppose it wouldn't be nearly as delightful.

One day I'll turn into one of those foodies who takes killer pictures of my kitchen creations.  But not today. 

 Instead, you get mediocre pictures of my kitchen productions.  And if you live close enough you can drop by for a taste.  

If there's any left.  

Which knowing me, there won't be for long.  

But you can try.

White.  Yellow.  Chocolate Cream.  Coconut.  Dark Chocolate Mousse.  
Thus summed up in one word:  Yum.

I tried a slightly different frosting on the white and yellow.  Verdict: thumbs up.  

The Coconut is a recipe that a good friend of mine was thankfully willing to share.  If you like coconut, it is to die for.  

The Chocolate Mousse was a little tweaking of a from scratch chocolate cake recipe I use.  With mousse piped into it.  And on it.  Because a girl craves chocolate mousse sometimes.  And it was totally worth the extra 30 minutes that adding the mousse required. 

One big fat fest of calories.

That one tasted really good.

That one too.

My hands are dry from so much washing yesterday.  
Because every time you lick a finger you must then thoroughly wash your hands.  Duh.
Eventually a spoon in the frosting bowl was the way to go.  

See?  I told you it was yum.  

A kitchen full of cupcakes is a good thing. pretty.....

I love color.  

I can spend hours roaming my favorite fabric stores just soaking in all of the color.
Ironic considering that if you ask me my favorite color, I'll tell you white.

A box arrived yesterday, but in the midst of mountains of frosting, I didn't get the pleasure of opening it until today.


See, I told you it's pretty.

And the best part is that there's another layer under there.

Who knew tulle could be so satisfying.  

Even more satisfying-the twirls and giggles from little girls wearing tulle. 
 I think some of this tulle may just end up around my waist.