Monday, June 28, 2010
On Sunday, I slept late which was glorious. Then, Little Miss took a nap. When she woke, we took a walk so she could walk through the water fountains in the neighborhood. Once she dried off, we went to dinner for my dad's 60th birthday at Dogfish Head Alehouse which was yummy (and provided a yummy lunch today).
So, it was a great weekend full of family, but it was tiring. I'll be looking forward to a relaxing long weekend coming up. Up top is a picture of Little Miss with brother-in-law at dinner on Saturday (where they matched nicely). Down below is a picture of Little Miss running through the fountain on Sunday.
Friday, June 25, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Monday, June 21, 2010
8.81oz (or ½ pound) butter, cut into cubes
8.81oz (or ½ pound) dark chocolate, broken into pieces
1 tbsp instant coffee powder (or granules)
2 tsp vanilla extract
¼ cup extra-light olive oil (or vegetable oil)
½ cup buttermilk
1 cup self-raising flour
1 cup plain flour
½ cup cocoa
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 cups caster sugar
2 cups thickened cream
17.1oz (or 1 pound) dark chocolate (extra), roughly chopped
1 Preheat oven to 320F. Grease and line a 8.7inches round cake pan with baking paper. Put butter, chocolate, coffee, vanilla and ¾ cup hot water in a saucepan and stir over low heat until chocolate is melted and smooth. Remove from heat.
2 Combine eggs, oil and buttermilk in a large jug. Sift flours, cocoa and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl. Add sugar and stir until well combined. Make a well in centre of flour mixture and add egg mixture. Stir slowly to combine. Add chocolate mixture, stirring constantly until well combined.
3 Pour mixture into prepared cake pan and bake for 1 hour 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool cake in pan.
4 To make ganache, put cream and chocolate (extra) in a heavy-based saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir until chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth and well combined. Pour into a bowl. Cool at room temperature or refrigerate until ganache is spreadable. Decorate cake with ganache.
Measurement conversions for grams to pounds were obtained by using the calculators here.
For converting cooking measurements, this website seems good. It lists UK, US and Aust measurement for everything and indicates that the cup measurements and even the teaspoon (tsp) and tablespoon (tbsp) measurements are also slightly different in each country, but I haven't converted tsp/tbsp in the above recipe. You can read more here.
SIDENOTE: I had a bowl with my dry ingredients, wet ingredients and chocolate sauce to make the cake. I put the oil in with the chocolate sauce instead of with the wet ingredients. I don't feel it affected things too much. I'd be willing to make the cake again. I will warn that it is a very heavy cake. I didn't cook mine the entire time. I cooked mine is an 8x8 baking pan and took it out around an hour in when it was done. It puffed a lot, but it tasted done to me. However, I know some who did cook the entire time. Someone said they cut the cake in half and did a layer of ganache in the middle, and I don't see how that's bad at all.
1 loaf Crusty Sourdough Or French Bread
8 whole Eggs
2 cups Whole Milk
½ cups Whipping (heavy) Cream
¾ cups Sugar
2 Tablespoons Vanilla Extract
½ cups All-purpose Flour
½ cups Firmly Packed Brown Sugar
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
¼ teaspoons Salt
1 stick Cold Butter, Cut Into Pieces
Fresh Fruit (optional)
Grease 9 x 13-inch baking pan with butter. Tear bread into chunks (or cut into cubes) and evenly distribute in the pan.
Mix together eggs, milk, cream, sugar, and vanilla. Pour evenly over bread. Cover tightly and store in the fridge several hours or overnight.
In a separate bowl, mix flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Add nutmeg if desired. Add butter pieces and but into the dry mixture until mixture resembles fine pebbles. Store in a Ziploc in the fridge.
When you’re ready to bake the casserole, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Remove casserole from oven and sprinkle crumb mixture over the top. (If you’re using fruit, sprinkle on before the crumb mixture.) Bake for 45 minutes for a softer, more bread pudding texture. Bake 1 hour or more for a firmer, less liquid texture.
Scoop out individual portions. Top with butter and drizzle with maple syrup.
On Sunday, Little Miss woke up with Husband. Then, I woke up and got ready and we took a nap around the neighborhood. Little Miss played in the spitting fountains around the corner. Then, we came home, ate lunch and she took an early nap. Then, we went back to the grocery store for a few things. All in all, it was a good Father's Day. Mostly relaxing. Monday came too fast!
I did get my new camera that I bought for my birthday and have been playing around with it - taking many pictures of Little Miss, making the photos black and white, changing the photo settings. All sorts of fun. Can't wait to see what I can do with the photos from this summer.
On Saturday, I'm not sure what we did. I thought we went to the pool again, but I can't remember the evening. I know I watched a DVD. I think the boy went to a work social event if I remember correctly.
On Sunday, I hosted book club and we had a mini baby shower for Sister-in-Law. We had enough food for probably double the amount of people. I'll post my recipes later perhaps, but I made French Toast casserole and chocolate cake. Others brought wine, mimosa ingredients, blueberry muffins, berries, quiche and cheese. So, a true feast. The photo on the left is Little Miss getting ready for the guests. She had to wear her rain boots. The photo on the right is Little Miss halfway through bookclub. It's a lot of work entertaining so many women! I know, she deserves a real pillow, but she likes the firm throw pillows so that's what she uses. Dora fades in and out of her favor, but she is in the rotation. Plus, because we have a lazy kid, she never climbs out of her crib so she's in the crib for a little longer until we can mentally accept the fact that she's a big girl.
The first weekend of June was the weekend closest to Husband's birthday. We had dinner with his family at Vapiano and then went to his parents' house for ice cream cupcakes. The photo to the left is Little Miss with her aunt and uncle. She's being a total ham for the camera.
On Saturday, we babysat Nephew and then I met a friend for some book talk. It was a great day despite the fact that Little Miss was very jealous of Nephew and didn't want to share any of her toys. She was very good in the bookstore and with meeting new people.
The next day we went to the pool where Little Miss took immediately to the water so we hope to spend more time at the pools this summer now that she can enjoy it.
Sunday, June 20, 2010
Dads are funny fellows. They aren't always in front of the camera. So, sometimes, there aren't many recent photos. Therefore, I've taken photos of our dads from our wedding. They look the same but a little older (but, hey, don't we all?).
Below is my dad and I in the limo on the way to the church. It's one of the few photos where he doesn't look scared to death which is why it's one of my favorites. I wish him a Happy Father's Day! Below is Husband's dad without whom there would be no Husband so obviously I wish him a Happy Father's Day.Last, but not least, I wish Husband a Happy Father's Day because he's an awesome father. It's not every father who can make his Little Miss make the happy squishy face. I had to specify because Little Miss also has an unhappy squishy face.
Friday, June 18, 2010
Sidenote: I was actually trying to find the picture of Kyle Chandler and his daughters at the beach for a little symmetry. It was so cute, but it made the inner Mommy in me cringe to see the girls in their party dresses filthy from the sand. I know it's only clothes, but messes drive me batty (you should have seen me last weekend when Little Miss had marker all over her party dress - inwardly cringing all day).
Friday, June 11, 2010
Thursday, June 3, 2010
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
All of the movies were watched in the last week of May. The first was not really my cup of tea, but as I've mentioned, I watched for Kyle Chandler. Seriously, if Kyle Chandler blows up one more time, I will freak out. I'm tired of it! I saw Sex and the City 2 in the theater with friends. We had a lot of fun. I was never a huge fan of the franchise so I was probably the most unamused by the film, but if you liked the first movie, you'll like this movie. It was cute in parts. If you didn't like the first movie, you won't like this one. The Informant! was a rental, and it wasn't bad. It was kind of quirky and left you wondering. It wasn't perfect, but I did make it to the end. I'm starting fresh with Netflix so hopefully my movie watching will start to increase. I've got one at home that I've been waiting patiently to see.
- The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan (NOTE: This is Book 1 of the Percy Jackson series. The book order can be found here.)
- The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan (NOTE: This is Book 2 of the Percy Jackson series. The book order can be found here.)
- The Titan's Curse by Rick Riordan (NOTE: This is Book 3 of the Percy Jackson series. The book order can be found here.)
- Savor the Moment by Nora Roberts (NOTE: This is Book 3 in athe Bride Quartet. The order of which can be found here.)
- The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan (NOTE: This is Book 4 of the Percy Jackson series. The book order can be found here.)
- The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan (NOTE: This is Book 5 of the Percy Jackson series. The book order can be found here.)
- Sh*t My Dad Says by Justin Halpern
On Saturday, we got up normal time and got ready to go to Deep Creek Lake. Little Miss had a ton of strawberries and Cheerios for breakfast. Then, we drove to Deep Creek Lake and met the family at Wisp for the K-9 Tunes and Brews. It was a lot of fun. The kids did the jumping castle, played games, ate ice cream. The adults (Husband, Sister and Dad) drank beer, a lot of beer. After, we all ate dinner and went to bed.
On Sunday, Husband woke up early to golf while we all went to the top of the mountain so the kids could play in the water. Once they were thoroughly soaked, we went home so they could eat lunch and, for some, take a nap. Then, there was dinner and movie night (though not all made it to the end).
On Monday, we mostly got up and got ready to head back home. The weekend was fast, but it was fun.