Thursday, April 28, 2011

Bunny Cake

This is a photo of Min's latest cake. She made this for us for Easter. It's a bunny's butt, as if he fell into the basket of candy. The outside of the basket is made from Kit Kat bars, the top is covered with M&Ms and the bottom is a cake. Cute huh? I have better pix of it on my camera, this one was taken with my phone, but I haven't bothered to download the camera photos yet. Hope you all had a nice Easter.

Monday, April 25, 2011

The current soundtrack of my life . . .

I've recently discovered Mumford & Sons courtesy of Sadie Lou's blog. I recently purchased their CD "Sigh No More" because I couldn't get their song "Awake My Soul" out of my head. Sometimes the Universe whispers to you to wake up, sometimes it sings to you.

The Cave is my second favorite song on this CD.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


A number of things have annoyed me lately and it makes me wonder if everyone is on some sort of automatic pilot drug and not really an active participant in their lives.

So TSA screeners are doing patdowns on 3 year olds, 5 year olds, is there some sort of profile they have that the public isn't aware of that says these suspicious youngsters could be packing explosives? Really, a 3 year old? What do they do to infants?

The government was in danger of a shutdown, it still might be, and we're going to continue playing politics because we're rich members of Congress and it won't affect us. Just like we can have the cadillac of insurances that the government pays for but the public can't, and just like we get the golden parachute of retirement packages, but everyone else's pensions (people who make substantially less than Congress people) get cut. Does that make sense to anyone? I say freeze all the assets of Congress until they do their jobs, no money, no insurance coverage, and start deducting from their retirements until they actually do their jobs for the benefit of the public and not big corporations and special interests.

Speaking of big corporations and special interests, did anyone else catch the story on GE paying no taxes on $5.1 billion dollars in profits, and then on top of that, taking a $3.2 billion tax credit? Yet the Republicans do not want to close the corporate loopholes or tax the very rich at a higher rate. Really? How can you say that with a straight face? How do you guys keep getting elected? Oh yeah, massive corporate funding and an ignorant, easily manipulated voting public. *sigh*

Then there are the multiple instances of air traffic controllers sleeping on the job. I can understand it happening, but when the telephone rings to wake you up and you still sleep? How about 2 air traffic controllers asleep at the same time at one of the nation's busiest airports. How does that happen? You would think when the first few got caught a couple of weeks back, that the latest ones would have been more careful about sleeping on the job so as not to get caught.

Let's not forget everyone's favorite wacko cult, Westboro Baptist Church. It's no longer enough for them to destroy funerals of military personnel, now they're going to picket the schools of the children of military personnel. Really? Are you that stupid? Do you really think you're going to get converts with that? Do you really think anyone's going to change U.S. policy because of what you're doing? The only policy that's going to get changed is that we're going to come up with stricter parameters on constitutonally protected free speech to prevent nut jobs from spreading the hate.

All this stupidity and lack of common sense is making me feel old and crotchety like Maxine. Have a nice day.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Spring Has Arrived

We now have 72 very happy garlic plants popping up, M has also planted potatoes, onions, spinach, cilantro, basil, peas, zucchini, and tomatoes. I got some 2 year old asparagus plants for her to plant this year. Every year I ask her to plant asparagus and every year she says, it takes a couple of years before you get any asparagus, but then never plants it. So this year I found the plants and now I'm politely reminding her to plant them. :-)

Apparently all my bulbs enjoyed the snowy Winter and wet Spring because they're all coming up this year. We had a huge number that never flowered last year. We have Jonquils.

Both our peach and pears trees are flowering.

We have Daffodils.

Our Phlox is flowering all over the property. We also have new buds on our Red Maple trees, new buds on both our lilac bushes and our Dogwood trees are also in bloom. This is the prettiest time of year around here. Hope you're getting good weather where you are.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A Typical Weekend . . .

Last Friday we had another progressive dinner, but because M had to work until 5, I got to be in charge of the food this time. Luckily we had dessert and I can bake a cake, well, two to be exact. So since M is such an amazing cook, I couldn't just do an ordinary cake. I felt pressure to create something beautiful. I went to the expense of buying stencils to decorate the top, getting candy flowers, spray on food coloring, powdered sugar, you name it. I used egg whites instead of whole eggs in the recipes to make the cakes fluffier. What I ended up discovering was that although I can bake a mighty tasty cake, I suck at decorating. That gene must have skipped right over me and landed with my daughter. On this chocolate cake you can just see the flower patterns on top I did with the stencil and powdered sugar. They didn't come out well so I tried to doctor the decorating with raspberries.

Next I also make a coconut cake using coconut milk instead of water, and of course, egg whites and coconut in the frosting. I again tried a stencil on top, it didn't work. I used spray on food coloring in an effort to make it look special and added candy flowers. Overall, it was okay, but a little messy looking. Oh well. At least they tasted good. We used up the left over cake at a cookout on Sunday and today when I was at work, coworkers were asking me about my coconut cake and I had to ask how they knew about it when they weren't at the cookout. Apparently it made an impression on one of the guests and she was raving about it. Okay, so one point for taste, I'll have to leave the decorating to my daughter.

On Saturday morning we each did political volunteering for different campaigns and I'm THRILLED to announce that all 3 of our candidates won their seats for City Council. We FINALLY have a majority on the City Council! We also went to see Source Code that afternoon. I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. You could basically figure out the premise of the movie from the movie trailer, but I was surprised at all the additional details that were in the movie. Also, at the end of the movie, you're satisfied because it's a good story with a good ending, but then they leave you with a little something more. I like that. I haven't had a movie do that in awhile. I would recommend this movie for all but the very youngest audiences.

Then on Sunday, after a very long wait to find the right tiles for the kitchen, months waiting on the shipping and then another month trying to work out the schedule for installation, we finally got the subway tiles installed for our backsplash in the kitchen, all while preparing for a spontaneous cookout gathering that M is notorious for springing on me at the last minute. :-) So in this shot you can still see a little of the teal paint on the wall where the tile hasn't been placed yet. We got close to matching the color of the walls with the color of the tiles. The tiles are more a smoky blue teal whereas the walls were more of a green teal. M now says we need to repaint all the teal walls in a nice shade of gray. *sigh*

More going in. We still have to put the covers back over the outlets and wash down the tiles to remove residual mastic. We also have to put up quarter round molding over some edges.

Other than that, it's essentially done. So what do you think? Min came home and saw it and said our kitchen now looked fancy. Amazing what a little glass tiling can do. I do have to admit, it is much prettier than the painted plywood. *grin*

The next thing I have to do is finally get the upper cabinets installed. I'll probably have to leave that for a couple of months until I get some of my legal work behind me and finish teaching. But they should be up within a few months. So that's what we were up to last weekend. How about you?