Archive for April 2008
When we moved in to this house, almost 6 years ago, I planted 2 lilac bushes.
During that next year, Superman someone who shall remain nameless, ran the lawn mower over them. So, I the ever vigilant and protective mama that I am, put little wooden stakes next to them so that they wouldn’t be run over again, hoping against hope that they would come back next year.
Sure enough, the next year, one of them decided that it would give us a second chance. Superman Someone who shall remain nameless, somehow ran over it again. I, being the ever vigilant and protective mama that I am, gave up.
2 years ago, through sheer strength of purpose, one of them cautiously poked itself through again. I figured that it would be run over, so I didn’t even bother with a stake. Superman Someone who shall remain nameless, had learned from his wicked ways, and left it alone.
Now it is big enough to fend for itself.
It is finally blooming, and I am more than excited.
I love lilac’s.
Not only are they beautiful, but they are just so fragrant.
I am big on beauty and perfume.
I’d like to think that they came back just for me, but the reality is that they probably heard me giving Superman the one who shall remain nameless what for, and were to scared not to come back.
The decision has been made.
I am a disciple of Jesus Christ.
I won’t look back, let up, slow down, or back away.
My past is redeemed, my present makes sense, and my future is secure.
I am finished with low living, sight walking, small planning, smooth knees, colorless dreams, tamed visions, mundane talking, cheap giving and dwarfed goals.
My face is set, my gait is fast, my goal is heaven, my road is narrow, my way is rough, my companions are few, my Guide is reliable, my missions is clear.
I cannot be bought, compromised, deterred, delayed or discouraged from the call of God.
I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of adversity, negotiate at the table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of mediocrity.
I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, and when He comes to get His own, He will have no problem recognizing me. My banner is clear.
I am a part of the fellowship of the unashamed.
It is always great to make fresh home made donuts. Most home made donuts aren’t good unless they are fresh, but these donuts were great cold too.
The boy just loves crullers. So when he found a recipe for them, I said “Great. Make them for me.” So he did.
These crullers taste much like the Little Debbie donut snack cakes, only better. They are not to sweet, or greasy. The best part is that they are just so easy.
These donuts take basic flour, sugar, baking powder, milk, eggs, salt, butter, vanilla, nutmeg, and oil. We used peanut oil.
First, get your oil heating up. This takes forever, so get it started now.
Apologies for the poor photography. It was dark o’thirty when these were started. That’s my story, and I’m stickin’ too it.
You take your dry ingredients, and whisk them together. Whisk you wet ingredients together and add them to your dry.
The dough is really wet, and I didn’t think that it would roll out well, but you refrigerate it for 30 minutes.
Don’t leave this step out!
Flatten your dough out. The boy likes the twisted cruller shape, but these can be made in the traditional donut shape too. If you do it they way we did, there is no second rolling out, and no waste. Much easier, and less time consuming.
Cut them into strips and cut the strips in half. We use a pizza cutter for this. Take your strips, fold in half and twist.
Get your assembly line going. On the left side of the oil, we have a platter to drain them in. Once you start them, you aren’t going to have time to do anything else but make the donuts.
Having your oil to temperature is key to deep frying properly.
When your oil is hot enough, put a few donuts in. Don’t crowd them, they like to swim free.
Here they are ready to flip.
Yeah, they are almost done. See how they have stopped bubbling so much around the edges. That is your clue to know that they are ready to be drained.
Which means that they are closer to being eaten.
Yes, I know that they look a bit dark, but with all the dough being twisted on itself, we thought that we should cook them just a bit longer to make sure that they were done in the middle. They were. The second batch was cooked less time, but they didn’t have the same crunch. We liked them a bit crunchier.
Fry yours how you like.
You can sugar and cinnamon them, powder sugar them or glaze them. We like glaze. I personally think for this type of donut texture, that they really need a glaze.
With our glaze, we used a flavored coffee creamer for the liquid to give it a boost of flavor. Dulche de Leche was what we had in the fridge, but these would be great with a hazelnut, or a vanilla toffee caramel, or whatever floats your boat.
We halved the recipe, and it made 12 donuts. We ate them warm, and we ate them cold. They were delicious both ways.
Long Island Crullers
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 2 large eggs plus one extra yolk
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1 cup buttermilk
- Vegetable shortening for frying
- Powdered sugar
Heat shortening/oil to about 365*F.
Whisk together the flours, baking powder, nutmeg and salt. Beat together the eggs, egg yolk, and sugar. Add the vanilla, melted butter and milk. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry and chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to firm up and make handling easier. Roll dough then cut it using a doughnut cutter. Or you can cut into strips and twist. Fry a few doughnuts at a time for about 2 minutes on each side. Remove with a slotted spoon or spatula and place on paper towels to drain. Continue until all the dough has been fried.
When cooled slightly, sprinkle with powdered sugar, or glaze if desired.
Makes 1 1/2 dozen doughnuts.
Today my wee ones are 4 weeks old.
This little guy was born snuffling and sneezing. Now he has a cold or something in his eye. I kiss him every day to make it all better.
Any ideas on what to do for his sweet eye?
Lightening is the mellowest of them all. He rarely mews, or makes a fuss about being held. I kiss him every day because he is a good boy.
Bootleg is such a sweetie pie. I kiss him every day because he has such a sweet pink nose.
Moonshine has the sweetest face. I kiss her every day because she is my favorite the only girl.
They will be weaned in 2 weeks, and I will have to go to therapy when I have to give them up.
I container garden. The dirt in my back yard had to have come from a rock quarry.
So the other day, to get ready for planting, I spaded over my ‘gardens’. I also had Superman and the boy carry the smallest container up to my back deck so that I could have that one closer. I might have mentioned that I am lazy. Just confirming that fact.
Last year, I planted 30 strawberry plants in my pink kiddy pool garden. 5 of them survived the growing season, and 3 survived the winter. One is actually producing something.
Tell me, what should I plan on making with 4 strawberries I will harvest?
It is Friday and I am nosy.
On a scale of 1-10, how much do you enjoy being alone?
I would say about a 2. I am an independent/dependent person. I am oxymoronic like that.
A few months ago, I was talking to a friend on the phone, and we got on the topic of what we were going to fix for supper. She said that she just slaps something on the table and calls it good, and that her kids really don’t appreciate it anyway, so why should she make something nice? I don’t actually remember what I replied, but what she said after, has stuck with me. She said “but I’m not a foodie like you.”
I never considered myself a ‘foodie’, but as I began to think about it…I am. I am a foodie, but it is obvious that I am only a novice foodie. I read quite a few food blogs for inspiration, but I know that I have not reached full ‘foodie’ potential yet.
One of the blogs that I read, has a cupcake contest every month. The boy wanted to get in on it, so I said “sure, why not?” After all, I’m a foodie, raising foodie children. He should get involved.
This month the contest was for Earth Day. The rules are/were that you make cupcakes with Earth Day in mind. Make them green, make them organic, make them healthy, most of all, make them creative!!! Ingredients are up to you this month, as long as your cupcakes celebrate Earth Day.
I read the rules and let the boy have at it. He got 5 different cookbooks from the library. They didn’t inspire him much. I suggested something pistachio as it is green. He doesn’t like pistachio. Obviously I have failed in the ‘raising little foodies’ category. So I left him alone.
He made a basic chocolate cupcake with a basic butter cream icing, and decorated it thusly.
I think he did a super job.
Wishing it was pistachio
Whenever I go into the bathroom/nursery, this is almost always how it looks. All 3 boys piled up on my girl.
She always tries to escape.
But they always seem to be right behind her.
Leave me alone.
Mama, he’s pickin’ on me.
Don’t let their innocent looks fool you. In about a week, I am going to be in some serious trouble.
So the other day, the boy and I were talking about food, and he said that he had been wanting to make Shrimp Scampi. Who am I to refuse???
When I think of Shrimp Scampi, it is the shrimp swimming in butter with crumbs on top like you get at Red Lobster. That is made the quick, assembly line way. The classic way gives it a much better flavor and texture.
First you need to get yourself a pound of shrimp. The boy purchased 35/40 shrimp, meaning that there are 35-40 shrimp to a pound. Don’t look for “jumbo” or “medium”. That is not standardized. It’s all about the numbers.
Peel them, de-tail them, and place them on a baking sheet.
Drizzle these little guys with olive oil.
Season them with salt, pepper, old bay, and minced garlic (of which we had none, and used garlic powder).
Broil for 2 minutes or until they turn pink.
Take them out, and pour over lemon juice. This recipe calls for ¼ cup, but that was waaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyy to much lemon juice. I am thinking a tablespoon would have been perfect.
Sprinkle on parsley and ¼ cup Panko.
What is Panko you ask? It is a Japanese bread crumb. They are large, sharpish, bread crumbs that totally rock. These make whatever you are breading tons crispier than anything else I have ever used. I am almost out, and must get me some more. The only place I can find them is at King Arthur Flour. I totally love this stuff.
Toss to coat.
Broil again till bread crumbs are brown.
The fun thing about this recipe is that it is more of a basic application or guidelines. Can’t have salt, then don’t use any. Like more lemon juice, use a whole cup. Make it yours. Add more Old Bay, less parsley, or even add some onion powder. It is totally up to you.
Make it today, or tomorrow, or next week, but make it.
It is way better than any sea food restaurant.
The girl and I were at the Tea House, where the boy works, for our usual Saturday tea, and in walked my dad. The girl lit up like a Christmas tree. She sure loves her Gramps.
He came to check out the deck. Said it looks good and sturdy, but then began to ask the questions I should have been asking myself.
How are you going to move it? “uuuhhhhhh”
Your yard isn’t level, whatch’ gonna’ do about that? “uuuhhhhhhh”
How are you going to tear it apart? “uuuuuhhhhhhhh”
Who is going to do the work? “uuuuhhhhhhh”
Obviously, I had not planned beyond my men doing some manual labor and enjoying the end product. Unfortunately, Superman works 2 jobs, and the boy is looking for a second. I could do it myself, but that just isn’t going to happen. Maybe 5 years ago, but not today.
I could hire out, but parting me from my money is something that isn’t done easily. Some call me cheap, some call me frugal, and some just make fun. But that is a story for a different day.
We tossed around some ideas, but it was the general consensus that we not take the deck.
I am bummed…..seriously bummed.
Now to tell the nice neighbor man.
I’m sending Superman to do my dirty work.
That’s what superheros are for, right???
Thanks so much for all your ideas and suggestions.
As you can see, the backside of my house is UGLY. OH…and I took this picture around 10 till 8 this morning. Yes, laundry is still on the line. Yes, there is foil on the door. Our refrigerator sits in front of that door, and since the back of the house is south facing, it gets alllllllllll the sun. So, we are helping the fridge.
What we are going to do is move the stairs from the side of the deck to where that green watering can is. Run the stairs to the bottom of the hill and put the deck there. I really like the idea of the gazebo idea. I don’t necessarily see a full gazebo, but since there are no trees in our yard at. all. I would love to have it covered.
Lastly, because I don’t want to leave you with my ugly house, a picture of my girl that I took 2 weeks ago. That ought to cleanse the mind.
It is Friday and I am nosy.
Today’s question is very important, but just a bit different. I need your ideas, opinions, and in general, tell me what to do.
Our next door neighbor is giving us this deck. What should we do with it? Where should we put it?
We could add it to our deck that is already out there, or put it out back and make a fire pit kind of thing, or we could add to the porch out front, or ???
Do you have any ideas?
Do you see any problems with my suggestions?
Do you like one more than the other?
Dad, will you come help???
My hyacinth are finally in bloom.
They are right outside my front door so that when I go out, I can smell them.
I have pink ones too. Did you seriously think I wouldn’t?
When the chips were small, every summer, they would run inside with grubby little hands, grubby little faces and grubby little feet and huge smiles on their sweet little faces.
In their grubby hands they would be carrying a bouquet of weeds flowers for me. A token of their love, a gift.
The other day, the boy ~~sans grubbiness~~ came to me, a huge smile on is face and in his hand was not a bouquet, just a single spring flower. A token of his love, a gift.
I love you too.
Hi, I’m Fire. I like to eat. The human in pink calls me bubba. I don’t know what that means, but it must be good because she says it so sweetly. Pink ladies mom and dad are going to take me home in about 6 weeks. That makes the boy happy, because I am his favorite, and he will be able to visit me any time he wants.
Hi, I’m Moonshine. I am the smallest of my family. I am the favorite. I know this because I get the most attention from the pink lady.
Hi, I’m Lightening. I am the quiet one. I am usually on the bottom of the sleeping pile. That’s ok, because everyone else is keeping me warm.
Pink lady must like me ’cause she is always sticking her face on me. Unfortunately she doesn’t shower first.
I’m Bootleg. I look just like my brother Lightening. My favorite pastime is eating, sleeping, and squeaking.
I’m Whiskey, and I am being sucked to death.
I’m Grace, and I’m jealous. I am supposed to get all the humans attention, and they keep going upstairs for some reason. I don’t like it. I don’t like it one bit. Maybe a well placed hairball will do the trick.
Superman is laid off this week, so I already have put him to work.
Friday, we rearranged our basement around.
Saturday, he reluctantly mowed the grass.
Today, I will let him rest, but look out Monday.
Last Saturday, Superman and the girl participated in a fashion show at Stuffmart.
Thrilling, I know.
The girl and I spent 4 hours, yes, F.O.U.R. hours picking out 2 outfits. I didn’t even take that long shopping when I was a teen. I am not a shopper. Yes, I realize that this makes me an embarrassment to my gender, but there it is, out in the open for all to see.
Mom and dad showed up.
Being the great daughter that I am, I made them stand with me in the underwear department. Nothing says fashion show like being surrounded by underoos.
This was my favorite outfit.
My girl really knows how to work it.
She had to have learned it from him, ’cause not only am I not a shopper, I can’t work it either.
Today is Friday and I am nosy.
Today I need to know about vegetables. Do you eat them? What is your favorite vegetable? What is the one that if you were starving to death, you still would not eat? What is a vegetable that you have never tried, but always have wanted to?
My answers will be in the comments.
PS. Today is my wedding Anniversary. It has been 16 years since Superman and I were married.