Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I'm in a funk.

Christmas is probably one of my favorite holidays. I love to bake lots of cookies and treats, shop for gifts to bless family & friends with, watch holiday movies and sit in front of the fire. But this year...I'm struggling to get in the spirit. Right now the holiday season feels like no other season to me, just that there's a tree in my living room and stockings hanging from the mantle. I'm not in the mood to bake, because my clothes are too tight as it is. I'm not in the mood to shop because my account is too dry. I'm not in the mood to watch holiday movies, because I don't want to watch them alone. I know this would be a little easier if Jason was able to be home more in the evenings, but he's been working really hard so that we could afford to spend Christmas together out in Seattle. I'm blessed by a man who loves me that much that he's working all through the day and the evening so we could have Christmas together, so I truly am thankful for that. It just doesn't make it any less lonely at the moment either.

I know at the 11th hour when we finally arrive into Seattle, it will finally feel like its Christmas. It's been far too long since I've seen my family over the holidays. I miss them and I miss showering them with love, goodies & gifts and cozying up together to watch While You Were Sleeping. It's not the same without family. I want to drink hot cocoa, sit in front of a real fire, play a game, do a puzzle, read a book cuddled up next to my sisters, watch a movie with the family while dad nods off, eat mom's home cooked turkey & stuffing. I'm a traditions girl, I need them. I've tried my best to make some of our own, but its not the same. I want a little boy and a little girl of my own to share these traditions with, to buy gifts for, to snuggle on Christmas Eve with, to sew stockings for, to bake goodies with. It shouldn't be any shocker to hear me say that - I am 31 after all. I know, all in God's timing.

We're going to a Christmas party tonight and I'm not even looking forward to it. Friends are great, but I want my family. I wish we were leaving tomorrow, I'm homesick.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Truflle Balls

Last night was our book club's Christmas Party and we were asked to bring a yummy dessert. I know it comes as no to surprise to many of you that I sat there and mulled and stressed over this decision for a few days. I absolutely love to bake and the look on people's faces when they eat one of my treats makes me so happy.

Finally a friend at work suggested I try to make these Oreo truffle balls that she had at a party the night before. So I looked up the recipe and with a few modifications of my own, made what is some seriously heavenly pieces of goodness.

They also present beautifully at a party and are easy as pie to make! I made two different kinds - the milk chocolate ones have a peanut butter/Butterfinger filling and the white chocolate ones have a mint Oreo filling with some flaked coconut on top.

Rach - this recipe is for you darling!

Milk Chocolate/Peanut Butter Truffle Balls

Ingredients: 1 pkg. Nutter Butter cookies; 2 boxes Butterfinger Minis; 1 pkg. Cream Cheese, softened; 1 pkg Milk or Semi-Sweet Chocolate chips.

Directions: In food processor, grind up a entire package of Nutter Butter cookies until powder-like consistency and pour into a bowl. Then grind up two packages of bite-sized Butterfinger bars (found in the candy aisle), also until a powder-like consistency. Add one whole package of cream cheese into the food processor and process with the Butterfinger until smooth. Remove that mixture from the food processor and add to the bowl with the Nutter Butter powder. With wooden spoon, blend well until fully incorporated. Using a tablespoon or melonballer, spoon onto a cookie sheet covered in wax paper or parchment paper then roll into balls. Chill in refrigerator for 1 1/2 hours. Once chilled, melt entire bag of chocolate in either the microwave, stirring every 20 seconds until smooth or using a double broiler. Roll the balls into the chocolate on a spoon and place onto wax paper. Place back in the fridge to set and chill. Serve at room temperature.

White Chocolate Mint Oreo Truffle Balls

Ingredients: 1 pkg. Mint Oreos; 1 pkg. Cream Cheese, softened; 1 pkg. White Chocolate Chips; Shredded Coconut.

Directions: Same as cookies above, just swapping out the Nutter Butters for the Oreos. Also I found it easier to pour the melted white chocolate on the Oreo balls, since the rolling them in the chocolate left Oreo residue in the chocolate. Then sprinkle a tad of coconut while the chocolate is still soft & refrigerate to set.

Best served at room temperature! Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

What's YOUR Opinion On The Matter?

First of all, before I get started on this heated topic - Jason and I are not pregnant. So don't ask.

Moving on, here's my question.

Many of you are either working moms OR stay-at-home-moms (SAHM's). And I've heard from different women, even single women without kids, what they think the best route for raising their kids should be. I haven't had to cross that bridge yet, but I'm curious. Personally, I've had a job working full time since I was 14 years old. I've never really been without a job for more than a couple months, which was when I moved out to Tennessee with my husband. In the office where I work I've asked a couple ladies, and it seems that they're preference is to definitely work and put their kids in daycare, because "kids need to be socialized" and these women are career-driven. Of course, I'm not going to get the SAHM opinion here in the office, cause well, you're not going to find one in the workplace.

Ideally, if my husband and I could afford it, I would love to be able to raise my kids at home until they're old enough to go to school. And ONLY if financially strapped, then pick up a part-time job. I fully realize that some moms don't have the option and have to work. My best friend was a single mom for many years and had no choice but to work to provide for her daughter.

But here's where I'm curious. Is it more enjoyable to be a Stay At Home Mom OR is it more enjoyable to be a Career Mom? I would think, it would be more enjoyable to be a Stay At Home Mom (Not saying they're working any less) but that it would be much more rewarding to be pouring into your kids lives rather than sitting in a cube answering a phone and to the whims of a boss or two....or three. Though I do appreciate being able to bring home a paycheck, I just think I would get way more satisfaction out of raising my kids and knowing that I'm the one raising them.

What stirred all this thinking was when I caught a few mothers talking on TV. The three moms, who were all friends, were sitting together at the zoo with their kids and one of them said, "This sure beats working a 9-5 job!" And her friend turns to her and says, "No, its definitely harder." And I just kinda sat there thinking - "Really? Is it harder? You're at the zoo with your friends, and your cute kiddos petting the animals and I sit in a cube answering to two men every 5 seconds and being at their beckon call, punching a time clock." I don't know and I'm curious as to what y'all think?

So please, what are your thoughts on this?

Friday, December 04, 2009

So good.

Kristin Bell was on Craig Ferguson the other night and mentioned the Surprise Kitty video from YouTube. I of course, had to look it up to see for myself.

Oh.

My.

Word.

Reeaaaallly makes me want one of these. After all, what's one more animal in the house?





Then I was watching an Oprah episode I had tivo'd and saw this performance of Mary J. Blige & Andrea Bocelli singing What Child Is This. A-maz-ing. It gave me chill bumps.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Girls Weekend on The Farm

Last weekend, I was blessed with the opportunity to join a few girlfriends for a weekend away at a beautiful cabin on some acreage just outside of Nashville. It was an open invitation to all the girls in our book club, but due to many scheduling conflicts, it ended up only being 4 of us in a gigantic 5 bedroom, 4 bath cabin/barn for 2 1/2 days. Complete and total bliss.

I'd had a rough couple weeks with all the pain from the dental surgery, roof leaking issues, HVAC quitting on us ect... I was stressed and was grateful to have a few days to recharge my batteries and do nothing but stay in my pajamas and read. And the best part about it, it was completely free. The cabin/barn belongs to a friend of one of the girls and they had offered it to her for the weekend.

I did take some pictures of The Farm (as it's referred to) so you can get an idea of this piece of heaven I was able to enjoy!
It was constructed as a barn and the right side is used for events, while the left side is the actual home.
This is what it looks like from inside the barn, you can see the stables on the right.


Here are some shots of the surrounding acreage and ponds.







We would take walks in the afternoon around the property to look at the creek, ponds, cows and this lovely little duck. It took me a couple days before I realized it was plastic. Awesome I know.
Here is the entrance to the cabin side of the barn. Aren't those rocking chairs just precious?

Once inside you see the great room that includes the dining table, living room, kitchen and pool table.
But my favorite aspect of the house was the breathtaking 20 ft fireplace surrounded by comfy leather chairs.
And can you believe I had this room all to myself? It was almost too quiet to sleep, but I'm not complaining! Gorgeous!
A huge thank you to my dear friend Julie for hooking us up that weekend and to the family that was so generous by sharing The Farm with us!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Cleaning House

Last night our church Small Group got together to discuss chapter 7 of Crazy Love by Francis Chan. If you haven't heard of it, its a great and challenging book to read. By challenging I mean, that it's pushing me to do things that aren't quite comfortable.

For example.

Do I really need all the things that I possess? I have a hard time giving up things. I wouldn't say I'm a pack rat, but I do hold onto things from the past for sentimental reasons. Doesn't everyone. I have a sucky memory, and sometimes cards or clothes helps me remember special events or moments of my life.

But then there's the fact that I despise clutter and a messy house. We don't have a huge house to begin with, and hardly any storage and the piles are starting to take over certain rooms. Ick!!! Quite frankly it freaks me out. I can easily go into a full blown panic attack when I see the mess, dust, dog-hair, boxes and crap getting out of control. I feel some simplifying coming on. I need to downsize on "stuff" and start taking it to the thrift store or just simply throwing it away. I'm not kidding y'all - getting rid of things, especially clothes, is soooo hard for me.

Maybe for further motivation, I'll show you some before & after pictures :-) Or maybe not, I get so embarrassed by the mess! We'll see.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

This Dedication Goes Out To Two Fabulous Women...

they happen to also be my sisters...




I have every confidence that one day they will blow some guys' mind and those guys will realize they never knew love or a woman so amazing until he met her.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Procedures Week

Tomorrow I go in for a dental procedure in which they will extract a tooth and then immediately put in an implant. I've been given a prescription of antibiotics & Valium. And even knowing I'll be high as kite on Valium, does not bring me much comfort whatsoever. I hate dentist appointments and I have developed an intense loathing toward my old dentist who never informed me that the tooth to be removed should have been crowned in the first place. I would never be in this position had I known that. But then again, I should have gotten it crowned a year ago when I found out about it. My bad too. OH and the best part of all of this! The insurance doesn't pay for implants! Oh yes! Which MEANS, a lovely $1000 up front tomorrow and the rest needs to be paid over the next several months. Oh and did I mention we desperately need a new roof? I'd rather have a new roof than this dental appointment, but a girl's got to do what a girl's got to do. Which reminds me, I need to charge up my ipod cause it's going to be a long 2 1/2 hours tomorrow. arghhh...

ALSO - Friday we bring the boys into the vet for their fun, little neutering appointment. We were told once bad habits started to emerge, we would REALLY need to get that taken care of. When we started noticing the dogs mark their territory outside or get too aggressive, I would warn them, "Keep that up and you're going to get your nuts chopped off!" Good thing we don't have kids yet, we could leave some permanent damage with that one. So I scheduled the appointment and all of a sudden the dogs started behaving better....hmmmm...think they know? I have a feeling Seven (the black lab) does, he's been WAY too obedient not to have an idea. Oh and don't worry, I will be taking pictures of the collars that they both will be sporting to keep from licking themselves and each other. It should be awesome and hilarious - maybe a video would be even better!

But hey, isn't our new fall wreath pretty? (yes, trying to distract myself here!) It only cost me $10 plus a couple dollars worth of extra fillers.
This last weekend Jason and I went to the Nashville Farmer's Market and picked up some pumpkins, bales of hay and cornstalks to decorate for our Small Group Party tonight. The pumpkin carving will take place on the front porch to keep some of the mess out of the house and Jason hung some pretty white lights up as well to make it more festive. Jason's been cooking chili for the last three days and I made a big batch of molasses cookies last night. Plus they'll be cornbread, coffee punch and treats! I'll try to get some good pictures!
At the Farmer's Market, Jason became quite enamored with the swan and duck pumpkins he came across.
If you think of it, please say a little prayer for me tomorrow, I'm super nervous about it! Love ya all!

Monday, October 26, 2009

If Jason & I were otters...

I came across this video over at Busy Bee Lauren (who I think is completely adorable) and fell head over heels in love with these little otters.

Watch the WHOLE thing.


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

We Made It Out Alive!

We're back from camping this weekend and had a great relaxing time! It was a little too cold for my taste, but at least that cut down on the bugs. You know its cold when you no longer need your cooler for cold drinks. Nights were a little rough, with a queen size air mattress, the two of us and two 65 pound Labradors. It was so freezing and got down to 36 degrees on Sunday night. The labs would just be laying there shivering, and so were we, so we just each grabbed a dog and spooned until all our body heat kept us warm. Nice visual huh? I woke up more than once with a paw, a butt, a tail or a tongue in my face.
Jeep is still terrified of fire and kept his distance by perching himself on top of a picnic table one campsite over, and Seven kept us busy by staying obsessed with his Kong (a rubber chew toy) until we would throw it for him.
The food was wonderful, the quality time was wonderful and the campgrounds were wonderful. We stayed a beautiful KOA in Chattanooga that had gorgeous trees all around us, a huge meadow for the dogs to run around in and hot clean showers which was a big bonus! I got a lot of reading done and we just enjoyed each other's company for three whole days. It was total bliss.
When it was time to pack up and head out, the boys immediately knew we were leaving and jumped in the truck picking their spots to ride. Yeah I don't think so boys - get in the back!
On the way back home, we decided to make a quick trip into downtown Chattanooga and stopped at our favorite little coffee & pastry shop Rembrandt's. It was the perfect way to end a great weekend sitting at a little cafe table in the sun eating breakfast sandwiches and delicate pastries.
To end this post, I thought I would include a video of Jason and the boys playing out in the meadow before we left camp yesterday.
I had an amazing time and I'm so glad I got to spend a whole three and a half days with my man! I love you sweetie!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Crap.

If y'all don't hear from us on Tuesday, you'll know we froze to death in our tent.


At least there's little chance for rain and only on Saturday evening. We're packing LOTS of blankets.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Only Momma Can Wake Seven From His Slumber!

Last night Jason and I were laughing about how soundly our dogs sleep. That is unless they hear a certain trigger - like a noise outside, a faraway dog barking or the name of our cat, Banks.

It's pretty hilarious actually and if you didn't know there were dogs in the house and you heard snoring, you would think it was an old man (not pointing any fingers here).

As we're saying goodnight (yes to the dogs, get over it already), Jason is snuggled up next to Seven and saying his name to try and get a response out of him - and yet nothing. Not a flinch, eye flicker or grunt. We thought it was hilarious and decided to make a small movie out of it and it turned out pretty funny.

Monday, October 12, 2009

4 Days of Camping Bliss...

I am beyond excited for our upcoming camping trip. The best way to enjoy a vacation, is to be - in my opinion anyway - well prepared :-) I have a bit of a reputation for my packing lists and how thorough they can be. What can I say, I don't want to worry that I've forgotten something and being well prepared keeps me relaxed going into a vacation. To me there's nothing worse than driving all over a strange city and trying to locate a Walmart looking for the salt & pepper or dog food you forgot to pack. Ugh. (Can you tell we've been there?!)

It's just us and the boys and guaranteed to be a relaxing time with reading, horseshoes, playing with the boys in the dog park and lots of sleeping in. Jason and I haven't had a weekend away or a vacation for just the two of us since....hold on I'm checking the calendar....whoa, over a year actually. It was September of 2008 when we went to Indianapolis for a concert - yikes, that sucks. We've had plenty of trips to visit family, or family out visiting us, along with two Small Group camping trips, but not a single weekend away just us for over a year! Yeesh! No wonder I'm so excited!!!

We also have a great menu all planned out so we'll be eating some serious grub while we're there. Let me give you just a sampling of our menu - marinated chicken & vegetable skewers bbq'd, grilled corn on the cob, baked potatoes with stuffed cheeseburgers and baked beans, cowboy omelets and pancakes with scrambled eggs and bacon. Oh you're drooling now aren't you? And of course, I'm bringing some pumpkin bread in honor of the fall season and some homemade cookies.

I love to camp and I know that surprises some of you - but if done properly with an air mattress, flannel sheets and a soft duvet, it is pure heaven sleeping in the fresh air and cooking over a fire. Just make sure to bring a doormat to keep the mud out of the tent and a broom nearby to swat at insects or spiders. And there you have it! A perfect camping trip :-)

Haa ha - check out these doggy sleeping bags!
Check out this trailer - now this is camping in style!
Now I'm not this bad, but maybe kinda close (well ok, I was this bad before I got married)I won't guarantee any pictures, because right now I have acne like a 14 year old boy and I'm not planning to wear makeup every day out in the woods. But maybe you'll get a couple of Jason and the boys. And let's pray for great weather shall we? The first time we went camping, we slept on the side of a hill and had to keep inching our way up our bed throughout the night and the second time we went camping it rained half the time leaving mud EVERYWHERE - it was sick. So Lord, please give us some great weather and a level campsite!

Monday, October 05, 2009

Hang on we're diving deep here...

A few days ago I watched this nasty video a friend of mine posted on her Facebook of what looked like the biggest zit you've ever seen, being drained and cleaned out. I couldn't even get halfway through watching the video without wanting to gag. It was seriously one of the most disgusting things I have EVER seen. I would repost it here, but I'm afraid I'd lose your attention right then and there.

Then last night I woke up at 1am and felt compelled to pray with a heavy burden on my heart. I was praying for God to move in a specific situation. I asked that God would use my words as weapons to defeat the enemy's lies and deceptions. It was then when I was praying that I thought back to the video again. And he showed me that this situation on my heart was like that infection. That even though you couldn't see it from the outside, it ran deep, was wide-spread and yes utterly disgusting. Something or someone needs to go in and expose the infection, bring it out in the open so that the wound could be cleaned and fully healed. Sorry for all those of you who have weak stomachs, but sin is disgusting, its ugly and its hard to look at. But when left to itself, it spreads through the body and kills off the healthy cells. As much as we wish it to, as much as it doesn't appear to be all that bad, this infection will not go away on its own and yes, it only gets worse. The infection has to be exposed, for true healing to take place.

Then the verse came to mind from 1 John 1:5-7: "This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light,... as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin."

My heart is so heavy this morning and I pray that God would show me how to pray specifically for this situation or even how I must act. Don't think that just because we don't want to face it or deal with it, that the infection isn't there. God's Word is like a cat-scan or an MRI, used to find those tumors or infections and then once discovered, it MUST be removed. Or just like a cancer, a tumor or infection it will ultimately kill the body.

I know there is power in prayer and I pray that my words might be used as a scalpel to lance open the infection, however ugly it might look or be - because God is bigger than all of this and His desire is for his children, that they may have life, healing and hope.

Friday, September 25, 2009

My Hairy Home.

So who would've thought that two short-haired Labradors would SHED SO MUCH! Holy crap there's a mess of hair around our home! I swear I'm sweeping up MOUNDS of hair every couple of days. Apparently labs shed their undercoat every Spring and Fall and frankly its quite disgusting. We could superglue their hair onto a stuffed animal and we'd have another Labrador.

I'm so not kidding.

Then you factor in a shedding cat and its just outright nasty around our house right now. So our plan of defense is this - I introduce you to the FUR-MI-NA-TOR! These bad boys are $45 and apparently comb out all the undercoat decreasing the shedding by 90%. Oh but of course I wasn't willing to pay that much, so I found a brand new one on Ebay for $13.50 - holla! So as soon as it arrives in the mail, we'll be having ourselves a Furminator party in the backyard. And I do hope to take pictures of the removed hair in all its glory. I'm REALLY hoping this does the trick!

These are the images of how much hair this little miracle worker can remove: (see the black lab in the center picture?)
And speaking of labs - thankfully both Jeep & Seven are doing much better with the infections they both had. Seven's eyes are back to normal and looking beautiful and Jeep's bacterial infection on his face is starting to clear up. Even with all the vet bills, they are the best dogs in the world. And I know I sound crazy, but as soon as we get more land and a bigger house, I would love to get one or two more! After all, we don't have our Chocolate Lab and I would love a Silver one too!

Have you ever seen a silver lab? GORGEOUS! I think if we get one, we should name him Sterling.
I know what you're all thinking - I'm crazy for wanting so many pets. But they are so fun and they bring so much joy to our lives. And ultimately I want a house full of kids, dogs, and my cat Banks!~

Friday, September 18, 2009

Not an ounce of inspiration.

So yeah, I've been asked lately why I haven't updated the blog. *big sigh* I just haven't been inspired to do so. It might have something to do with the fact that I spend 40 hours a week typing my butt off as my job. So anything extra in front of the computer is oftentimes just more work. And these last two weeks have been A TON of work.

Ok so enough whining about it. Here's some random thoughts Jason and I have been throwing out there lately.

First of all - Jason was offered his friend's landscaping business. Jason has been working for his friend Moke over the last summer as a way to earn some extra cash when work at the restaurant is slow. But just recently Moke and his wife Tracy decided they were going to put their house on the market come spring and head to California. We've been praying about this a lot trying to hear the Lord's direction on whether we should do it. Jason's done some number crunching and I've even discussed it with one of my attorneys. It's looking like an awesome opportunity for us because 1. it will provide us with some serious cash next spring, summer & fall to pay off our car & hopefully get our roof replaced and 2. it will allow Jason to cut back nights at the restaurant to spend more time at home!!!! (I love this one most!) AND 3. he can be his own boss determining when he works, for how long and how much. We're thinking the plan will be to give this business a couple years and see where it goes and where we're at with things.
(Jeep likes to wear Jason's protective goggles.)

Hmmm...second. We're trying very hard to find some good flights out to Seattle to see family and friends over Christmas. The difficulty this year is the added financial burden of boarding the puppies while we're gone. We found a great place for a great price, but it still adds to the cost of flights and gifts. Holidays don't come cheap for us. :-) This year, we may just have to wrap a big bow around ourselves and show up. Merry Christmas - we're your gifts! That, or I'll be making handmade ornaments again like I did back in the MC days. Ha! (So all you crafty people out there, feel free to send some clever homemade ideas my way!) Oh and baking always works wonders with my family, so at least there's that.

What else...I'm trying desperately this afternoon to focus on the fun things coming up in the next couple months so I don't start getting anxious over my 3 hour dental appointment tomorrow afternoon. I broke part of a tooth off and it needs a crown, along with the tooth behind it also needing a crown. They're hoping they can save the broken tooth, otherwise they're going to have to pull it and put in a graft for an implant. Yuck, yuck, yuck. I should start charging my iPod as soon as I get home, I'm going to need lots of music to listen to.

And so what are these fun things I'm choosing to think on instead??? WELL LET ME TELL YOU!

Next month Jason and I are taking a few days and heading down to Chattanooga for some good 'ol fashioned camping. Just us and the dogs. I'm so pumped to just relax, snuggle with my man, sleep in, read and walk with the pups. And of course we have to stop at Rembrandt's Coffee Company to stock up on their delicious roasted coffee and grab a quick bite to eat!
(This is where I plan to spend most of the weekend while camping!)

Then in November, I'll be joining my friend Julie and some other girls for a Fall Reading Weekend at a farm/lodge near town. It'll be two nights & three days of hearty soups, cozy blankets, fuzzy jammies, dear friends and good books. I can hardly wait!!!
And finally December, where I hope to spend a good amount of time with family and friends over Christmas and maybe even the New Year. My dear friend Jess will be in town and I can hardly contain myself at being able to spend some time with her!

Lots of awesome things to day dream about other than this nasty dentist appointment tomorrow.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

I'm ready for fall....

I guess we've "unofficially" had our last day of summer, but you wouldn't know it here in Nashville. It's still been a gorgeous 75-85 degrees on average and no signs of the leaves turning or cooler weather. But I am looking forward to putting the dresses and skirts away (yes you heard me right, I wear those now) and get out the cords, jeans and sweaters.



I'm ready for simmering soups, warm pies and soft blankets. In October, Jason and I are taking the dogs camping for a long weekend in Chattanooga. Just us, nature, a campfire, some books and lots of relaxation - I'm already excited about it and trying to resist writing out a packing list.


Thankfully the weekend is here and I'm looking forward to chillaxin a while. This week was a tad busy with the Memorial Day BBQ at our friends house with the small group, then cleaning my house and making caramel popcorn all Wednesday night for Book Club at our house last night. Nothing on the calendar this weekend and its just the way I like it!

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Monday, August 31, 2009

August Daring Bakers - Dobos Torta

The August 2009 Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Angela of A Spoonfulof Sugar and Lorraine of Not Quite Nigella. They chose the spectacular DobosTorte based on a recipe from Rick Rodgers' cookbook Kaffeehaus: ExquisiteDesserts from the Classic Caff├ęs of Vienna, Budapest, and Prague.

I headed over to my friend Jill's house to spend a Saturday baking our challenge together, and really it was WAY more fun doing it with someone rather than alone. We were able to bounce ideas off each other and ask questions - AND laugh together at our creation in the making.

Seriously, I was totally thinking this was going to be a total flop, but in the end, I was so pleasantly surprised!! I will definitely try it again, but with different caramel because ours tasted like lemon. Who puts lemon juice in their caramel? It was kinda messy and the frosting was nothing like a buttercream to me, but then after two hours in the fridge - HOLLA!! Oh sweet Lord was it ever divine.

Yum-my!!

Jill took some pics, cause her camera is WAAAYY better than mine, but I don't have the pics quite ready to post yet.

For the recipe, you can click here. (But just skip over all her drool-worthy pictures, cause then you won't be able to compare ours to her magnificent cake!)
Looking forward to another challenge!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Cleaning With Dogs

We had ourselves a bit of a busy afternoon taking the dogs to the vet and then getting the oil changed as the puppies were still with us. They were so exhausted when we got home, that they passed out cold on the floor. It's not rare that they will tear up tons of cardboard and envelopes that we give them to chew on in the living room and Jason was helping by sweeping it up this afternoon. Very cute video of Jason sweeping up around Jeep :-) Unfortunately I recorded it holding the camera in a portrait position, but can't flip the view around so it looks a bit sideways.
(**Please ignore the snorting, I have no idea who that was.)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Okay Krissy-Poo, I got on it and uploaded what few pics I took in California last week :-) This Jason and I at some tower landmark in San Francisco. There was a great view of the Bay from up on that hill.Here's the tower. I guess it was built to make the city more beautiful. Nope, not seeing it.Here's about as close to Alcatraz as we got. Unfortunately the tours were sold out for weeks in advance and there was no way we were going to be able to get a ticket - shoot! Sorry honey!
We walked halfway across the Golden Gate bridge with Scott & Kelley, my bro & sis in law's. It was so fun to spend a few days with them exploring the city.
Awww....here we are. And the white sweatshirt I wore every day because IT WAS FREEZING! Note to self - pack sweaters when visiting San Francisco, it is nothing like Clovis.And here we have Clovis. :-) Just kidding. We drove by these adorable cows and ducks feeding on the grass on our way back from the reunion and we had to pull over a get a couple of pics!
Moo. Quack.
Who's that dashing young couple??!! They can't possibly be going to a 20 year high school reunion??!! They look far too young ;-)