Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Pay it forward

Anybody wanna play? I read about this on Andrea's Knitty Bitty Blog and thought it would be fun to join in. So, here's how it goes:

If you want to join in the fun and get a little something in return ... be one of the first THREE people to leave a comment on this post and you'll receive a hand made gift from me during this year. There's a small catch...You knew there would be didn't you? Post this on your blog (or Facebook* wall if you don't blog) referencing this post then come back and leave a comment on this blog post, telling me you're in. Fun, huh? And by in, you do know that means you have to Pay It Forward and give something to three people on your blog or Facebook page. I don't even care if you make something ... just giving something is good with me!

Remember, only the first 3 comments receive the gift from me. When and what will be a surprise.

And if you didn't check out the link above, now is the time to check out the Knitty Bitties blog. Andrea's stuff is adorable and you may just want to treat yourself to something if you didn't comment in time, or just can't wait to receive something from me.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Delicious Disaster

Claire has been very clear about wanting strawberry cake for her birthday cake. I really wanted to make a gunk-free cake (without enriched flour, refined sugar, food dye, etc.) so I decided upon this recipe. It's the only one I find, and looked pretty delicious. I figured I'd make a trial run today knowing that there are a lot of things that can go wrong when baking a cake. Especially since I was changing things up a bit. Good thing, because my house now smells like burning batter. Why you ask?

Is it because I used whole wheat pastry flour instead of white cake flour? Nope
Is it because I don't know how to use an oven? Nope
Is it the use of organic cane sugar instead of refined white sugar? Not a chance

Is it because I failed to notice that pictured cake was three layers and I poured all of my batter into two 8 inch cake pans? BINGO

It looked more like an elementary school volcano experiment than the happenings of a culinary masterpiece in my oven.

And it's really hard to tell whether the burning in you nostrils is coming from the smoking batter on the bottom of the oven, or the overflowing cake pans that have been kept in the oven way longer than the recipe calls for because those darn toothpicks won't come out clean.

So, one of my cakes came out looking like this (after trying to flip it onto the cooling rack).

And the other, though done all the way through and frosted with this little bit of heaven, doesn't look a whole lot better. I guess you could say it has a "great personality".

All is not lost. I ate my fair share of cake pieces and finger-fulls of frosting, and it is darn delicious! I'm thinking strawberry cupcakes for birthday girl.

Speaking of...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Because it took me over an hour...

Because I've been tagged in one way or another by just about everyone I know via blog or Facebook over the last several months, and because it took me over an hour to think up 25 things about myself on Facebook, I figured I might as well get double credit and post it for you here too.

1. My nickname in High School was "Barf", short for "Barfany". It really wasn't that bad, I'm sure they all meant it as a term of endearment.

2. I tend to think the best of people. I'm sure it gets me in trouble, and it drives Jeff crazy, but I think it's a positive quality and I'll keep it.

3. I have an explosive temper with a long fuse. We're just now discovering that Claire has inherited my temper. It doesn't mix well with toddlerhood.

4. Some day I want to be a doula. Natural childbirth is something I'm very proud of, but I do understand that it's not for everyone. I was very lucky to witness the birth of my nephew and the experience changed me. Other than the first sight of Claire, it was the most beautiful thing I've ever seen.

5. I was boy crazy from the moment I was born. Boys have never been gross, carried cooties or any other of that school girl nonsense. Ask anyone who ever went to church camp with me...

6. No one ever told me that 31 is when you start forgetting how old you are.

7. I rarely forget just how blessed I am.

8. I can't remember dates at all. Don't ask me in what year I was in 4th grade. In fact, I don't have a lot of distinct memories of childhood, school or even the first years of our marriage. What I remember most about any situation or time in my life is how I felt. If I do have a vivid memory, most likely it was emotionally charged.

9. Some day I'd like to try acupuncture. Not that I desire an ailment that would require treatment, but I'm fascinated by what the results would be. And no, needles don't scare me.

10. I'm even more curious about EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques). I know it sounds a little "out there" for some, but I believe that God equips us with many means to heal and repair our bodies and our souls. I certainly don't think every remedy needs to come in the form of a pill.

11. God is determined to teach me that just because His time line and mine don't match up, it doesn't mean His answer is "no".

12. I hate fresh, slimy, snotty tomatoes. I adore all things made with cooked tomatoes. Sun-dried tomatoes are to die for.

13. My BIGGEST pet peeve is when people do not pick up there feet when they walk. That shuffling noise makes me want to step on the back of their shoe causing them to fly face first into the ground. Especially lazy teenagers, chawing their gum, mumbling to one another or into a cell phone, who DO NOT PICK UP THEIR FEET in those stupid flip flops.

14. I'll admit it. I pee in the shower and feel no shame.

15. I never really cared for working out, but have found CrossFit to be slightly addictive.

16. I love to take pictures. I'm not very good at it, but I do have a nice camera that makes up for some of my lack of talent. I wish I had the natural talent, but I don't, and I don't want force it. I settle for a few nice shots among the hundreds of mediocre.

17. I'm thankful that after many, many years of growing apart from my brother, that the last few years have brought us closer than I ever thought possible. Not as close as many siblings may be, but it's a close that I am thankful for nonetheless.

19. One of my greatest fears and greatest hopes is that I will become my mother.

20. I'm a cat lover. But somehow having a child has greatly diminished my need for pets. Maybe I always had cats to fill the longing for children.

21. Being a stay at home mom is something I try not to be snotty about, but it's a hard job sometimes and I'm really proud of the fact I choose to raise my child and that my husband works very hard to support our choice.

22. I wish I were a better Christian. Of course I wish I prayed more, read my bible more and even shared the gospel more. But mostly, I just wish I LET God be the Lord of my life more.

23. I don't have an eye for interior decorating. Jeff is responsible for all the nice parts of our home.

24. I'm a mouth-breathing, snoring, thrashing, sleep-talking sheet hogger. Jeff's not a pretty sleeper either. Eventually we will sleep in separate beds if not separate rooms. Otherwise, divorce may be inevitable.

25. I really hate being "tagged", but love all those who tagged me. I refuse to tag anyone else.