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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Over the Top

So these two items put me over the edge. The friend that made these doesn't know that I will be calling her as soon as Sam hits school age and I need to bring in themed treats to his classroom.
This cake was for a "water party" for her son Aaron, I thought it was utterly hilarious. Look at the powdered donut life preservers!
Thanks for sharing Julie, you are amazing!

Monday, September 28, 2009

What I've Been Doing Lately

Watching a lot of Sesame Street, baking, and eating. Like this towering piece of carrot cake from Gibson's Steakhouse a couple weeks ago. The thing was seriously 9 inches tall.

And no, I did not eat it all by myself.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Autumn Day Muffins

I wish you were at my house right now, enjoying the scent of these muffins wafting by your nose. They are for my Bible Study ladies tomorrow, and will hopefully also feed Scott, his office and other special people this week (Sophie and Kathy, they have your name on them!)

I got this recipe from a roomate in college, more years ago then would be lady-like to mention, and have used it annually ever since. One recipe makes 24 muffins, and it's one of those awesome muffins that is BETTER made the day before. They'll keep two days in fact, wrapped well and kept cool. I serve them with a dollap of cinnamon sugar butter smeared over each half.

Autumn Day Muffins
3 1/3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 TBS. pumpkin pie spice
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
4 large eggs
1 lb. can plain pumpkin
1 cup butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 cups ghirardelli chocolate chips
raw sugar, for sprinkling on top (optional)

Thoroughly mix the first six ingredients in a large bowl. Break eggs into a small bowl and whisk, add melted butter and pumpkin. Mix well. Pour wet ingredients over dry and fold in with a rubber spatula, mixing only until moistened. Gently stir in chocolate chips. Scoop batter evenly into greased muffin tins and bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 30-40 min. Check doneness at 25 minutes, muffins will be puffed and springy to the touch in the center. Can be wrapped when cool and kept for 1-2 days. Best when made the day before.

Cinnamon Sugar Butter
Soften two sticks of unsalted butter to room temperature. Use a hand mixer to mix in enough cinnamon sugar and salt to taste. That's it.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Who needs Krispy Kremes?

For the past two years, I have been mourning the loss of our local Krispy Kreme Donuts shop. Where's a girl to go for her hot, freshly made donut fix? You know, where your tongue tastes the remnants of the oil for the rest of the day?

Then, this morning, walking to the market with Scott and Sam, I smelled it. My pregnant nose picked up the scent of hot, sweet oil frying SOMETHING four blocks away. Something familiar. And friends, I have urgent, need-to-know information for you who live in and around my town.
There are three guys making donuts from scratch at the French Market this morning. First time ever. They bought the machine back in June and have been developing their recipe and techniques ever since, this week was the trial run. Unfortunately they haven't quite worked out the logistics yet, no on had thought to get change when the first lady handed them a $20 bill.

They looked at each other and said, "Wait, how are we going to do this?" One guy ran down to the Great Harvest Bread stand and came back with a stack of singles, luckily. The chocolate frosting wasn't melted enough to use yet, but none of that mattered in light of the sublime TASTE of freshly made donut about slide down my throat.
Friends, the smell alone is enough to draw you in. I'm assuming they'll be back next week, offering donuts by the dozen, half dozen and singles. We bought half a dozen for $4 and I'm afraid I'm going to eat them all myself. They dissolve away in your mouth, so so good.

Fun times at Great Grandma's and Grandpa's

My dear grandparents are endlessly patient with my energetic son, Grandma frequently utters, "Ohhh, he can't hurt anything!" I beg to differ, but appreciate her sentiment none the less. He knows where the 40 year old toys are kept, and runs to that closet as soon as we get there. I remember playing with this grocery cart and the funny shape thing when I was 2.
Sam decides to do a little work in his "office." I can only hope he didn't mess up any of my grandpa's files.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Fourth of July

We were lucky enough to be included on a fun weekend up at Gull Lake, MI with two other couples and their kids, a fabulous time was had by all. Great food, swimming, fireworks, reading in the hammock during nap time and Sam was totally enthralled with the two older boys by the end of the weekend.

A favorite pastime for the boys, gathering rocks from the lake into buckets and throwing them back in. For hours.
All tuckered out, time for nap!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

See? I WASN'T jumping the gun...

I'm actually behind the seasonal eight ball, according to Costco.
Unbelievable, Christmas trees and decorating items at Costco on September 2nd.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

"Where's Sammy?"

Hiding in Daddy's closet one day after work.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Hello Again

Well Scott has informed me he's sick of looking at that cupcake recipe post and that it was high time I got around to blogging again.

Admittedly, it's been at the bottom of my list these days, dealing with the natural exhaustion a 2 year old boy generates, combined with being 4 months pregnant and all that goes with that. We are happy though, and I have many war stories from the past few months involving markers on our rugs and walls, Aquaphor spread everywhere in Sam's bedroom and on his person and other highjinks that we won't talk about here involving poop.

All that being said, where'd the summer go? September is my favorite month of the year and I am full throttle into all it entails: over 65 pumpkin/gourd related products strewn around the house, a freezer full of homemade stock for stews and soups, Diana Krall and Nat King Cole in the iPod and a fire built in the fireplace ready to go.

It's good to be back, I'll post some pictures of our summer next...

Guess Who's Going to be a Big Brother?

Most of you (my few readers who may still check once in a while) know this already, the rest of you probably don't care. It's big news in our house though, due in February.
Sam is very excited, when we asked him what we should name the baby he cocked his head, stared off into space and responded, "Rick."
Hilarious, because we don't KNOW any Ricks. I have no idea where he even heard the name.