Monday, January 24, 2011

Monday List

This week we're grateful for:
::Successful transfer of a sleeping Danny from the car to the crib, and then a 4 hour nap
::Mattie playing with a "family" of measuring cups and an egg carton for an hour
::Joe's interest in pileated woodpeckers
::Hand-me-down home-made knitted sweaters...

::This moment...

::Artisan bread in 5 minutes a day with honey...

::Knitted candycorn from a friend ...

::The courage to brave the cold...

::Mattie's renewed interest in babywearing...

::The chance to go grocery shopping alone at sunset...

::Thrift store Saturday...

::Any little moment I can find for knitting hats...

::And, Danny's new phrase:  "helping, helping!"

Friday, January 21, 2011

Haircut Friday

Dear Matthew,
Well, the back of your head was looking crazier and crazier every morning.  People were starting to comment and you were starting to look hobo-ish.  Then someone used the word "dreadlock" and we knew you were waaaay past due.  Everyone knows Grand gives the best haircuts, but I've been asking for advice over the phone and after Chris got tired of me micromanaging his haircutting efforts, I decided to give it a go...

This is the point where I thought, "Oh crap"...  It looked really, really bad...

But then I remembered how real hair-cutters sometimes do this kind of cutting...

Phew.  It turned out okay...

Love, and sorry for the scare,

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Recipes The Boys Should Know...

Dear Boys,
I'll be passing on some recipes to you here every once in a while.  And I will try to figure out "Labels" so you can find them easily.

You must learn how to make this cake... (From Bon Appetite)

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine in a mixer:

1 1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup sugar
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup lemon juice (supposed to be meyer lemons, but whatever)
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup butter, very soft
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp lemon extract 

In a separate bowl, whip 3 egg whites until soft peaks form

then slowly add 1/2 cup of sugar to the egg whites and whip until stiff (but not dry) peaks form.

Fold the first mixture into the egg whites gently in three parts. 
Batter will be very runny.

Butter a small lasagna pan and pour in batter.

Put the pan with the cake, inside a bigger lasagna pan with hot water.  The water should come half-way up the height of the batter on the side of the dish.  
It says bake for 45 minutes, but we did more like 55 min.  The top should be golden brown and the center will jiggle, but if you touch the top, it should gently spring back.

It doesn't look like much...  (which is why I threw the pot-holder in the picture)...

But it is so good.  SO GOOD.  There's the light and fluffy layer on the top and then there's the lemon custard layer underneath.  So good.  S. G.  So good in fact, that once, when Joe pulled it off the counter and it landed face down, we just ate it off the floor.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Cozy Week

Dear Boys,
This week:  You played outside for an hour after it snowed, only coming in once to ask for hot chocolate in a thermos so you could drink it in your snow fort (which had built in cup-holders.)

We had apple pancakes with Pat's no-sugar recipe...
I apple, peeled, cored and diced
2 eggs
2 T. veg. oil
1 T. molasses (unsulphured)
1 c. milk
1 c. whole wheat flour
2 t baking powder (aluminum free)
1/2 t. salt

We learned that if you leave the milk outside, the bottle breaks and you have a huge milk popcicle...

I pulled you in the sled that Charlie made...

And I took this picture of Danny's footprint versus my footprint in the hopes that I will be able to remember how little you all were.  Speaking of growing up, we got out the 2T clothes for Danny babe.  YIKES!  Time to have another baby, quick!  Just kidding.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The MI Sun in January

Dear Winter Boys,

This is pretty much all we get for sun these days.
So we'll make do with these sunnyish things...

That?  Why, that's the chameleon Joe made at school.  I love it.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Mac and Cheese Curse

What do you do when your three year old only wants to eat macaroni and cheese from a box?  First, you feel guilty because it's your own damn fault for having it in the house in the first place.  Then, you worry about diabetes and how men who are tall have better jobs etc.  Then you say fuck it and throw in some broccoli and hope for the best.  Then what do you do if your kids start to hate having their picture taken?  I guess you just go with it...

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Images from December

Dear Boys,
Here are some pictures of how we spent our December days, they were very busy indeed...
In my effort to start some family traditions, I picked out this German candle pyramid to bring out after Thanksgiving.  You were all charmed.  The apple candle holder is from Joseph's Advent spiral at school.

Matthew, I also finished embroidering your stocking, which took me two years to finish.  And I also made one for Danny, embroidering to appear in 1-2 years.

We ate the world's smallest clementine on a surprise, and in my opinion, not very well deserved (there really wasn't THAT much snow) snow day.  Even though it was kind of an over-reaction, it was still exciting to have a snow day and it felt very old-fashioned.

My super awesome neighbor Ann introduced me to Rose Windows, so fun!

We also made our fair share of Christmas cookies...

Matthew, I was expecting mayhem with the sprinkles.  Cookies with piles and piles of sprinkles.  But look how carefully you decorated these gingerbread men...

A careful line of buttons down the front and ONE shake of sprinkles on each limb.  Very loving and tender.  I think you did that tree one there at the top center of the picture, because it looks pretty similar to the men.

These little houses were for Matthew for Christmas, but I accidentally sent them to our old house, then assumed they were lost in the mail, but they arrived!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Our Drive

Dear Boys,
Some shots from our 5 days a week drive to school...

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Quiet Night

Dear Danny,
Late naps have lead to late evenings, just you playing quietly and me doing whatever, mostly taking pictures of you.