Monday, April 24, 2017

A Little Bread Baking

Well, lookie here. I do have something different to write about this April.  Our girl Kate, an early Playdate helper who grew up to have a career and family of her own, mentioned on FB that she would like to learn more about cooking.  I told her I'd be happy to share, so what rolled out was a bread baking class with four beautiful young women.
Since we started at ten, I thought it would be good to end with lunch and the fruit of our gluten labors. I knew I couldn't teach baking and fix lunch at the same time, so I decided I would have some soup done and simmering on the stove.  The day I made this decision, it was in the eighties, and didn't seem like the best choice.  Well, Saturday dawned cold, gray and drizzling, so soup was a perfect accompaniment. I thought some hot tea, and hot chocolate would be good to sip while stirring lots and lots of flour.
Rae is very into sourdough bread and creates all kinds of amazing yumminess from one little starter. She opened our class with her expertise and a share of her starter, after sampling a warm loaf she baked before coming.

 Next up was kneading a heavy pumpernickel bread.


 We also prepared Buttery Beer Bread, Honey Wheat and learned to create loaf bread, cheesy garlic rolls and cinnamon rolls from one recipe of potato bread.



I so loved sharing bits of kitchen wisdom I've picked up through the years and listening to their joys and struggles.   I'm delighted to know such fine women are bringing up the next generation.

I would be happy to put bread baking on the back burner for a day or two, but alas, duty calls, there is a pitch-in tomorrow. It is ever the expectation for me to show with warm bread.

I plan every year to not allow the calamity that is state testing get me down. Every year I fail. Day one and stressful- faulty technology, miscommunications, a sick kiddo. Oh well, I just have six more days and eight more tests to go.  Yee Haw!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Easter and Stuff

I find this blogging seems a bit harder for me than it used to be. I guess after eight years the novelty has worn off. Perhaps too, is that I feel we live a sort of low key, rinse, wash repeat type of life.  I don't feel like I ever have much new to say. That's not a bad thing, but a kind of boring thing.
For kicks and giggles, I went back to April 2007, and there found that I had thirteen entries.
 This month two will probably be all there is to tell. There's always an other hand, so on the other hand, I love that I have these memories to look at whenever I want to, even though they make me cry.

So, Playdates continued with Easter crafts.

 Giddy-Up wanted to see Bean's Bug "Connection", as Bean called it when he was three, so I got it out and we looked at some pretty pitiful bugs and stuff.  In spite of their less than stellar shape, the kids were enthralled.

 My man Mr. Smiley is always good for a song and two step.
Our sunflower cake.


 I love this window in my church. Though 4:30 is early to be up, I enjoyed attending our Easter Vigil at 6:30. I love entering the church dark as a tomb, with only our candles.  I was a reader and really love proclaiming the Word.  It was a long reading too.  Then the light comes creeping in this back window, until the church is lit by the sun and we've reached the story of our Risen Lord!  Sweet.
 Drummer Boy and Gwen hosted a fun and tasty Easter Supper.

 Buttercup left me a message exclaiming that my coconut pie was the best she'd ever eaten in her life!
 These two turned five and six years old last week and our little Pixie will be two in just over a week.
 Who is this grown up guy?
 All the crazy group.


 As I've shared before, I'm not so fond of some aspects of this little wee farm.  There were nine tiny bunnies and now just this little guy. He has a mama that just doesn't get quite how it's done.

 Taking apart Pap's old mower.

 Last year I bought a set of Lavender Orpingtions, because they are good layers and good mothers.  They are obviously also bad roosters.  You have to watch this guy like a hawk.  Thankfully, he doesn't like SamWise, so that helps.

 Do you see that little helpful youngster, pushing his Wayside Posey in the swing when she hollered for him?

 When Bean and Ol' Henry were little, I made them little paper sack scrap books.  This quote was my absolute favorite sticker.  I couldn't believe  I found it on a tee shirt.

This was my very first noise with dirt on it. I thought then and still do, that there just could not be a cuter face.

Though he had, and continues to have some serious competition. Be still my heart.


 Giddy-up was intent on catching something.
 Yes, a fish. So exciting. Is it alive? No, it is dead as a doornail, but that did not impede the enjoyment in any way.
 One more time Lord, let me say a sincere thank you for this amazing creek and Your amazing creation.  We are fascinated.

Less than excited about ISTEP next week.  Hopefully this batch of eggs will hatch and brighten the kids days.  Spring is here!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Back At It

Alas, a sad good-bye to Spring Break 2017.  We really didn't do too much exciting since  this new boy puppy occupies a good bit of our time. It was nice to see my husband more than two days in the week and have a bit of extra time with my Gramerlings. I did manage some clean outs, though there is much more to do and as I've expressed here before, I'm simply terrible at it.  Still, a big box is headed to Salvation Army.
Our usual big Spring Break Playdate was poorly attended due to sickness and busyness.  It always makes me sad when one is missing, but it certainly so much easier with three that pretty much take care of themselves.  Uncle Jimi was able to join us. It was cool and damp, and a bit dreary so we entertained ourselves with shrinky dinks.


 Later, I got this bright idea to have the kids help me do a spring cleaning in the playroom.  I thought it would be fun to talk about how old they were when I bought the toys and who played with what most. Bless Bugg and Giddy-Up's heart, they stuck with it for quite a bit.  Bean on the other hand feigned unusual fascination with those shrinky dinks, ahem.  We turned on Davy Crockett for a bit of afternoon entertainment.
 I took SamWise out and realized the day had morphed into a spring beauty, so we hauled it to the creek.

 Bean and Bugg were photographers and serious rock skipping was the order of the day.



 Then it was seeing if you could throw a rock high enough to get a good picture of its descent.

 Then the splash!
 I enjoy doing cooking I don't have time for outside of  breaks.  Bugg was able to come with me do Shepherd's Kitchen.  Earlier in the week we made mints for the meal.
The menu for this evening was Salmon Patties, Sweet Potato Fries, Coleslaw, Cheesy, Garlic Rolls and the yummy mints.
 She was an awesome help.
 After the meal we headed over to Art on the Parish Green meeting and dug the old signs out of the basement and put new dates on them.
Yesterday Ol' Mother Hubbard and I went to an essential oils class. I learned quite a bit  and enjoyed the day with her.
Now, off to eight weeks of craziness. Ready or not.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Spring Break At Last

Boy, was I ever ready!  The weather continues to be crazy ups and downs.
Let's see, I need to go back to a week ago Saturday.  Bean was at his State Meet and did great again, cutting time and making a new record in his club for backstroke.
I was at Rae's, visiting a dear friend of hers and her adorable boy. Giddy-up had a cool science experiment to share and Mr. Smiley was unusually snuggly.





After breakfast, and checking everything going on inside, we ventured out to chase chickens.
Mr. Smiley said, "That baby, I want to hug him, but he keeps marching around."  



Mr. Smiley has come a long way with Samwise and was thrilled to walk him on his leash.

 Playdate was on last Tuesday with an addition of a new Wayside Posey that made her appearance in our lives the night before.  Oh my heart, what a cutest, snuggly, littlest bit.
 By the way, it was Pi Day, so the heavy eyeliner and little braid went with my shirt I wear once a year that says, " 3.145 % of all seafarers are Pi rates."  All my kiddos get to dress as pirates and we bring tasty round snacks of all kinds and find their circumference.

We enjoyed a lot of playdough time.


Then it was press on through the week, report cards, conferences and finally, Spring Break!

Drummer Boy wanted a few more chickens and so, until Samwise is out and about more, I had him come and get mine before the hawks do.
It is ever a fun family time trying to catch chickens, lots of screaming and running too and fro of hens, roosters and Gramerlings. 



Then, we were off on an adventure to a local park.  It was pretty cool still, and my knee still lets me know it is there, so we took a half mile trail.

Buttercup is tree hugging, climbing girl.


Can't let Sis out do you, huh Blue Eyes.

 There are gnomes in these trees.







 This little not yet two Pixie walked almost the entire way. Miss Independent.
 Now, my nearly five Missy Buttons, she wouldn't have minded us carrying her.
 Peekie -precious.



 Well, we were all cold and you know they were dying of thirst and in need of a snack, so off for donuts.



 We stopped by to say hello to Grannny Wandy, who was visiting with Aunt Tish.

It was big fun time.  We sang lots of songs from the Okie Dokie Brothers and talked about good books and places to hike at a later date.  They are also interested in one on one dates, so I need to get that on the calendar.    
I came home excited to have a nap before I started cooking for Coffee Hour at church this morning.  I told the Handy Man I intended to nap every day for two weeks.  A happy thought!