Thing. Take FOUR!

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Things again.  Things it is.  And another month has passed.  Wow.

Super hot days, and getting freezing nights going on here.  Pretty crazy how things can change from day to night.

And 10 weeks of pregnancy left!  Countdown is ON!

We’ve really been having a great summer.  I’m not really looking forward to its end, but I suppose ‘all good things shall come to an end’, as they say.  Fall is great too.  Really.  Here are some pictures of what’s been going down with us:

Breakfast time with two silly boys.  Constantly making each other laugh (and making a mess doing it).

Breakfast time with two silly boys. Constantly making each other laugh (and making a mess doing it).

At a wedding.  What a handsome hubby, eh?  And a baby bump at 29.5 weeks.

At a wedding. What a handsome hubby, eh? And a baby bump at 29.5 weeks.

Flour and baby oil.  Who knew it would make 'sand' to occupy much time.  And cute aprons bought at a local craft fair!

Flour and baby oil. Who knew it would make ‘sand’ to occupy much time. And cute aprons bought at a local craft fair!  They’ve saved much mess on clothes thus far.

Things:

  1. Adam Bede, by George Eliot.  I’ve yet to finish the book, but if you like classics, and love words – grab this book.  It took me awhile to get into it, but now I’m stuck.  It’s pretty dang good.
  2. Modcloth.com.  Seriously.  Get into it.  Cute and quirky clothes, shoes, accessories, and house stuffs!   Downside=Duty taxes when shipping to Canada.  But if you can make it past those taxes, you are home free!  So much cool stuff.
  3. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.  Great movie.  Hubby and I rented it, not knowing if we’d enjoy it or not.  Conclusion:  We both LOVED it.  It was really great!  Hard to explain without giving away the plot, so just watch it.  It’s a really well done movie.
  4. These super easy-looking diy slippers!  What a great gift idea!
  5. The World’s Best Chocolate Oatmeal Cake.  Can you say ‘divine’?  Because that’s how to describe this.  It’s super moist, yummy cake, with an oh-so-fudge-y frosting.  I’ve made two in the last three weeks…  And it’s been raved about.

Things. Take Three.

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Things.  Things seem to take up my time.  And summer just seems to go by much too quickly.  Crazy.  Cael will be THREE next week.  Which means we are already nearing the end of July.  Somehow.  It just started… didn’t it?  I know you don’t need me reminding you, but – WOW.  It’s just flying by.  Can I also say that I only have 16 weeks of pregnancy left?!  Wow.  Number three is flying along.

Which leads me to…. A belly picture!

Baby number three - taken at 21.5 weeks.

Baby number three – taken at 21.5 weeks.

 

 

And some boy pictures!

Outside fixing cars with Mr. Cael

Outside fixing cars with Mr. Cael

Playdough Time!

Playdough Time!

Craziest faces around.  What a kid.

Craziest faces around. What a kid.

 

This guy has got some crazy curls going on!

This guy has got some crazy curls going on!

Now to the THINGS!

  1. This cute end table.  It’s small, cute, and has a basket!  (Not to mention, it’s also on sale!)
  2. Little boy snuggles.  After my boys wake up, they generally need a bit of quiet time to get used to being awake again.  I keep realizing how big they’re getting, and how quickly.  So I’m absorbing as much snuggle time as I can get.
  3. Mommy’s Me Time blog.  Amber is mama to a 2 1/2 year old, 1 1/2 year twins and is pregnant again!  And she is the sweetest lady.  Always encouraging words, pointing to God, giving reminders… I could go on forever.  If you are a young mom, check her out!
  4. Fresh-picked STRAWBERRIES!  They have got to be one of my favourite things about summer.  So sweet, juicy, and lovely.  And oh, the things to make with them!   Jam, shortcake, smoothies.  Yum.
  5. This lovely maxi dress.  I’ve gotta get me one, or similar.  Super flattering, great colours, and sooo good for summer.

So many lovely things.  Check ‘em out.

[Another] Wedding Cake, a Gorgeous Bride, and Some Cute Boys.

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So.  As I can’t seem to post regularly, let’s just get to the point and say…  I cannot post regularly.  It seems an impossibility.  And that’s alright.  I was thinking today, one of the main reasons I started this blog, was to feel like I still had something to do and say other than babies.  It was right after Cael was born, I had just finished university, and my life had made a drastic change from university and work… to everything baby.  This blog kept me sane.  And while I still love it, and it might become a sanity-thing for me again in the future, right now it’s just a thing I do when I feel like it.  No pressure.  Anyhow.  That was my HUGE realization of the day, after feeling bad (once again), for not posting.  Ever.

Lemon curd

But here’s how I make it up to you.  With wedding cakes, wedding pictures, and the cutest boys ever!

Oh.  And some wonderful news!

Baby numero three will be joining us early November!  That was worth waiting for, eh?

Wedding cake

On to the cake.  This was for one of my best friends ever.  And she had free-reign over what kind of cake she could have.  Obviously.  She was the bride.  But this was epic.  For me anyway.  Three-tiered goodness.  Chocolate cake sandwiched with peanut butter cream cheese frosting.  Followed by white cake with a lemon curd filling.  And topped with white on white.  All completely covered in white and daisies.  Super cute, super yummy.  What more could you want?  Really.

Wedding cake

Another cool this about this wedding was that I got to travel to a warmer place.  All the way to North Carolina.  Which was pretty cool.  Actually, it was wonderfully warm.  Especially since it hasn’t gone over 10C here in weeks (except for that one random day).

Sarah and Drew

Sarah was a beautiful bride in her lovely lace dress.  So gorgeous.  Got to meet up with another best friend that I hadn’t seen in quite awhile (you’ll remember her from this wedding cake).  Which was super great.  Super duper great.

Since then, we’ve had my birthday, a trip to the zoo, and rain.

Cael

Cael found the 3D glasses from a movie. Bug eyes.

Jude

Jude eating breakfast like a champion.

And that’s that!  Maybe next time I’ll have some belly pictures and a recipe for ya!  That’d be nice, eh?  Maybe.  Here’s to hoping.

Things. Take two.

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I haven’t forgotten about this.  A new series designed to make me post more frequently.  Weekly, was actually my goal.  Has it worked?  Partly.  It’s been more than a week, but it hasn’t been the months that have often come and gone between posts.  More food soon folks, (promise?).

As I’ve said many times, life is busy.  But everybody tends to be busy.  All in unique ways, but all still busy.  So how can I possibly use that excuse?  Well, I’m just going to use it anyway.  Life is also good.  It’s FREEZING outside, but the sun is shining and two handsome boys are having a much-needed nap.  I’m looking forward to sunshine and warm weather though, deary me, it’s been a longg winter.  But the snow has also been great.  So pretty, and great to play in (not that I’ve taken advantage of that nearly enough).  Oh, to have the energy of a child who can play for hours in the snow.  I loved doing that.  Forts, tunnels, you name it, we build it out of snow.

On to the things.

  1. The Baker Chick.  If you haven’t heard of her, GO CHECK HER OUT.  RIGHT NOW.  She’s a sweetie, with an adorable new baby boy, and some of the best food on the planet.  Not to mention gorgeous photos.  Last week I made these awesome Gooey Meyer Lemon Sweet Rolls (but with oranges of course, I just cannot seem to follow a recipe).  They were phenomenal.  My yeasted dough turned out awesome!  Which is always a treat, as I find it hard to get stuff to raise in my too-cold house.  And they were just awesome.  The cream cheese frosting is the game-breaker.  So good.
  2. Bogs.  These are the best boots ever.  I got a pair for my birthday last year after I wore my brother’s half the winter (he somehow forgot them while he was away to school – score!).  They are fantastic.  Like a rain boot, but good up to -40F.  Waterproof and ssooooo comfortable.  Most certainly worth the price.  They will last me my life.  They don’t have the ones that I got anymore, but they’re similar to the Classic Boot, but in teal.
  3. This is my next DIY project, for in my kitchen.  Sharpie, white paper and a black frame, all set and ready to go.
  4. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 – “Give thanks in all circumstances; for the is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you”.  To be thankful all the time.  That’s a hard one.  But is certainly makes sense.
  5. The Secret of Platform 13.  This is one of my all-time favourite books.  I’ve read and re-read it probably 10 times.  It’s a kids book, but I just love the fantasy aspects.  It is great.  I could rave about it forever… I’m a sci-fi, fantasy fan… so if you don’t enjoy that type of things, you may not like it.  Easy read though.  Super duper easy.

And that is that.  I’ll get working on making something wonderful to share with y’all.

…  Pictures though, of course.  Here they be:  My beautiful boys.

Flour anyone?

Jude decided to try a fistful of flour. There was lots of coughing involved. And mess. Lots of mess.

He had to try it too!

He had to try it too!

 

Innocent looking, but don't be fooled.

Innocent looking, but don’t be fooled.

Cael loves to get his hands on his uncle's ski goggles.  He makes a pretty cute bug, eh?

Cael loves to get his hands on his uncle’s ski goggles. He makes a pretty cute bug, eh?

 

Things. A new series.

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So.  Things.  Imma link up some things that I’ve been reading, doing, loving, wishing for, cooking, wearing, etc.  I’d love feedback on what you guys are into these days too!  I’m always up for a new book, etc.

However, we’ll start off with some of the cutest kids ever.

Eating fruit loops from the Hungry Hippo game.  Great plate.

Eating fruit loops from the Hungry Hippo game. Great plate, eh?

My bro was home and went skating with Cael.  They love hanging out!

My bro was home and went skating with Cael. They love hanging out!

Breakfast with a Reindeer.  And funny faces.

Breakfast with a Reindeer. And funny faces.

AND!  I somehow forgot to share out 2013 family photo!  I love how it turned out.  It was completely unplanned, but worked all the better for it…

To come next post!  Because I don’t have it on this computer!  :)  Gotta keep you on your toes!

Things

  1. Are you busy?  Wait.  Is that a stupid question?  I feel like most people think that they’re pretty busy.  Well, you’ve got to make time in your busyness to read this great book, Crazy Busy.  It deals with being BUSY!  And so far, it’s great.  A nice quick read too.
  2. I discovered Joy the Baker about 3 years ago, and have been in love since.  She’s got a great writing style, creates amazing biscuits, and has a lovely way with photography.  She also has a cookbook – Joy the Baker Cookbook – that I would highly recommend.  Especially if you like sweet thangs.  Like chocolate…. and peanut butter.
  3. Keep.com  I’m new to it.  I’d like to describe it as similar to Pinterest, but no food.  (BOOOO.. I know.  But clothes are good too!)  Clothes, housewares, and all things cool.  I get an email about once a week from them with recommended things for me and fall in love with most.  Super cool.
  4. Anthropologie has my heart when it comes to clothes.  Check out this sweet pullover with the greatest details on the hem everrr.  (In black, please!  Size small!  .. Anyone?)
  5. This infinity scarf is what I’ve been knitting (for months… *sigh).  I’m almost done and can’t wait to wear it!  Not to mention how super easy it is.  Only thing – I used size 9 needles, and Bernat Softee Chunky (4 balls).  I love the way the stitch looks!  It’s super cool, and the yarn is nice and cozy.

There you have it!  My first 5 Things!

What are you guys reading?  Doing?  Loving?  Ideas for me?

Update. And a Birthday (or Two).

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Alors.  It has been much too long since I last posted.  Which really seems to be a theme for me.  And may very well continue to be a theme.  But such is my life.  Full of procrastination and lovely things.  I believe that it was early December the last time I posted, and while I will try not to bore you with too many details, and update on life is needed!

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*Warning:  You may be bombarded with pictures in this post…*

December went by in a flash, as it is wont to do.  So much food, and great company, so many lights, presents, and giggles.  Jude loved his first Christmas, and Cael really appreciated it this year for the first time.  Christmas morning was exciting for all of us.  Not to mention how cute they were in their pajamas opening their stockings.

(Side story:  I had sewn stockings for the three of us, and had material for one for Jude.  However, the closer it got to Christmas, the more determined those stockings were to not be discovered.  So.  No handmade stockings being filled this year.  About 2 days after Christmas, guess what I found?  You guessed it.  Right [not] on time….  Story of my life.  But it’s okay.  They’re actually somewhere that I WILL find them next year.  I will.)

January brought in much more snow and Jude’s first birthday!  This little dude decided he would learn to walk that week, and he hasn’t looked back.  Watch out world.  Jude is here.  And he is 100% mobile.  We had cake and friends over to celebrate.  You’d have thought it was Cael’s birthday though, when you walked in, because he was loving the party for all he was worth.

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{Homemade Ice Cream Cake for birthday numero uno}

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February.  (How in the world is it February?!) It is flying by like every other month seems to.  My mother turned the big 5-0.  And we partied!  Surprise party, actually.  Much of that week was planning, booking a surprise flight for one of my brothers, cooking, and trying to conceal it all.  Turns out, she had no sweet clue.  We [somehow] sat 35 people in my parent’s living room for a meal, plus probably 15 kids and other adults roaming the house.  Much fun, but I was zonked when it was over.  Lots of help from my brothers and friends, which was amazing.

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{Mom’s 50th – an inferno}

The week following, was Hubby’s birthday.  A cake was baked.  And this will be the foodness I’ll be sharing.  Because I’ve made it many times before, and it’s a hit every time.  First though.  I’m super thankful for my hubby.  He is great.  The best friend ever.  Best everything ever.  And I really don’t know what I’d do without him.  Happy birthday to him!

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Now, on to the cake.  It’s a chocolate cake, coffee infused.  Sour cream frosting, also with chocolate and coffee.  It makes for a moist, deep chocolate, coffee-laden cake.  And it’s good.  The boys like it, hubby likes it, I like it.  We are all happy.

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Mocha Cake

So, the cake is actually the same as this chocolate cake, with one exception.  Instead  of the hot water, you use strong, hot coffee.

On to the frosting.  Sour cream makes for a great tang and texture.  It’s actually lovely.  And I probably ate some of it by the spoon. No, maybe not ‘probably’, more like ‘most definitely’.

Mocha Sour Cream Frosting

3/4 cup butter, softened

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

4 tbsp hot coffee

1/3 cup sour cream

2 cups icing sugar

Melt butter and chocolate chips on stovetop or in the microwave.  Stir in coffee and sour cream until smooth.  Add icing sugar.  This will probably be runny…  Throw it in the fridge for a bit.  Until it comes to spreading consistency.  Eat it with a spoon, or frost your cake!

Then I actually took the time to photograph it.  Which really hasn’t been happening much at all lately.

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Shout out to the doily you see:  I have a post about it here.  I just have it folded over a bit to fit the table.  Love it though.  I’m definitely going to make another.  Supplies are had, time is needed.   (Which should be my new mantra…)

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Thanks for reading!  It really feels good to be back.  And thanks to the lady who asked me recently if I’ve been writing… it inspired me.

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2013

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The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2013

So I stumbled onto this cookie exchange while browsing through blogs. You make a donation to ‘Cookies for Kids’ Cancer’, which help with research, etc., so it’s really a great cause, and a great way to get in touch with other bloggers in your country! (Not to mention new ideas and COOKIES!) At this point, I’ve received one package of cookies, and two are at the Post office, just calling my name. But of course, due to kids, one vehicle, snow, and other circumstances…. I haven’t gotten to them yet! But I’m itching to get my hands on them to find out what they are!
Biscotti dough

For my cookies, well, I didn’t know what to do. I was really going to do a traditional family recipe, but I scratched that and did the total opposite. Though, I’m not sure why. Anyhow. I’ve been wanting to try out biscotti for quite some time now, and it just seemed like a good chance to try it out. I didn’t know much about it, other than that it’s twice baked, and awesome dipped in tea/coffee/hot chocolate. I also know that I love cinnamon and coffee/tea/hot chocolate. So, 1 + 2 = cinnamon sugar biscotti. Or some such thing.
Circle?

Here goes! Next time, I think I’d omit the coffee chocolate chips, and make pour some cinnamon and sugar on top of the cookies as well, but hey – first try, eh? Also, sorry for the non-natural-light-photos… I was crunching for time, and had to make them at night. :)
Ready for glaze & cinnamon sugar!

Cinnamon Sugar Biscotti

1/4 cup margarine, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
Pinch salt
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
2 3/4 cup flour
Coffee flavoured chocolate chips (optional)
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon

Glaze:
3 tsp milk
1 cup icing sugar

1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350F. Cream together margarine, and sugars. Add salt, eggs, and vanilla. Mix well. Stir in flour and baking powder until smooth. Fold in chocolate chips (if desired). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Divide dough into 4 even balls. shape each into an 8 inch log, slightly flatten. Place two on the baking sheet. Mix together cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar onto the two flattened logs. Cover with remaining logs and pinch together on the sides. Bake in oven for about 20 minutes, or until middle is set and slightly golden. Let cool on a rack for 1 hour. Slice diagonally into 3/4 inch strips. Place on cookie sheet, and bake at 350F for 8 minutes. Flip cookies, and bake for another 8 minutes. They should be dry to the touch. Let cool on a wire rack.

Mix together glaze until smooth. Coat ends of biscotti with glaze, dip in second amount of cinnamon sugar.
Cinnamon Sugar Biscotti

Ta da! Enjoy those biscotti!

And a teaser of the boys and one of their uncles… Just have to do it!  I painted my kitchen [again!] too!
Les gars

Lavender Berry Scones

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For some reason, rainy days and tea inspire me to post.  Could also be the fact that we’re having leftovers and I’m not doing anymore house work for at least a few more hours.  Reason three – both boys are sleeping.  Soundly.  (For now…)

Lavender Berry Scones

I think I made these about 6 months ago.  Made em.  Photographed them.  Devoured them.  Made them again.  Forgot to post them.  That’s how I roll.  Forgotten is my middle name.  Memory is a thing of the past.

So, I’m going to share them now.  And they are SO good.  I even found the pictures!  Go me!

Scones being created

I follow Miss Joy over at Joy the Baker.  She is da bomb.  I love her style, wit, and food choices.  Anyhow, these scones come from her, only slightly changed by yours truly.  Skeptical of the lavender?  Don’t be.  It tingles the taste-buds.  I did have a comment from a slightly disgruntled guy that flowers are for smelling, not eating.  BUT, they were devoured and many compliments ensued.  So I’d say they’re pretty good.  My hubby even loves them.  (And that’s saying something, as he’s generally a baked-goods-hater.)  Here goes!

Prebaked Lavender Berry Scones

Lavender Berry Scones

Recipe very slightly adapted from Joy the Baker

3 cups flour

1/3 cup sugar

1 heaping Tbsp dried lavender

2 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

Dash salt

3/4 cup cold butter or margarine

1 egg

3/4 cup buttermilk

1 cup berries (I used frozen blackberries, blueberries, and raspberries)

1 beaten egg and sugar to coat and sprinkle before baking

First of all, remember that ‘boys are sleeping soundly’ thing?  It’s now untrue.  But I will continue nonetheless.

Secondly!  Preheat that oven to 400F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl.  Cut in butter (or margarine) with fingers or a pastry cutter, until it resembles large oat flakes.  In another bowl, combine egg and buttermilk, and beat lightly.  Add to flour mixture, just until moistened.  Fold in those berries (carefully, they’ll make a mess!).

Turn onto a floured surface, and knead for about 2 minutes.  Roll out into a 1-inch thickness.  Cut into desired shapes (re-rolling excess dough for more scones), and place on baking sheet.  Brush lightly with beaten egg, and sprinkle with sugar.  Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until slightly golden brown on top.

Enjoy!  These are quite amazing alone, or with a dallop of butter and jam.  (Go for blueberry jam!)

Lavender Berry Scones.Ready for oven

Now to finish off with some kiddo photos as usual.  Just can’t get enough of my boys.

Mister Man

{In the sandbox, smiling away}

Sweet Eyes

{He’s practicing blowing spit here, just so you know…  But he has the sweetest eyes, don’t you think?}

 

Feels like Fall

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It DOES feel like fall.  And much too soon, in my opinion.  I’ve switched from shorts, a tank, and sandals to socks, sweaters, and leggings in a week.  From iced coffee to hot vanilla nut tea and hot chocolate.  (Not that it’s bad, just different, and MUCH too soon.)  I digress…

My counter.  Technically, it’s the desk my wonderful father made for me in elementary school, that I absolutely love.  But right now, it’s serving some time as a kitchen counter.  I was looking at it this evening after I put cinnamon rolls in the oven, and came to the conclusion that it’s a lot like my life.

My desk

Look at the organized clutter, the spattering of flour and cinnamon, the balancing of the laptop.  It’s got character, dents,scrapes, and doodles.  Lots of love oozes out of it when I think of the time and love my daddy poured into it as he made it.  (It’s got to be my favourite Christmas present ever.  Seconded by the hope chest he made me a few years later.)  My life is like my desk.  Organized, but in a messy, ‘only-I-know-where-everything-is-but-it-REALLY-is-organized’, kind of way.  Cluttered like my brain, jumping and crashing from one thought to the next.  Spattered like the laughter, screams, squeals, and tears of my family, throughout every day.  My life has had its share of dents and scrapes.  Doodles are the fun, quirky times.  So much love has been shoved into my life, and so much love squeezes out of me.  It’s give and take kind-o-deal.

There you go.  My life in a desk.  Didn’t think you’d ever come across that comparison now, did you?

On the other hand…

I may or may not need more counter space.  Either way, I had just enough room, in this cluttered mess, to make Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls.  I’m not going to share the recipe, I’ll just send you over to Piping Dreams for that.  But I did just want to say hey, and share a few photos.  Sorry (yet again) for being disconnected the past year.  Spring was crazy.  I thought, ‘Surely I’ll have some down time in the summer!’.  I was wrong.  Now that summer has flown by, and fall is at my heels, I’m thinking, ‘I must MAKE time through the fall and winter months!’.  Will it happen?  Only time will tell.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls

But for now, I leave you with cinnamon and clove scents wafting through my kitchen into yours.  As Lauren says in her post, these only take 30 minutes TOPS to whip up.  You can have your house smelling like mine in no time.  Or you can come over for coffee right now… or in the morning.  Whichever.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls 2

My hubby couldn’t wait for me to even get pictures, before he tried snatching a cinnamon roll.  What I didn’t tell him was that they were whole wheat.  Will he notice?  I haven’t heard any comments yet.  I’ll let you know.  (Sneaky wife here, trying to get him to eat healthier…  Do cinnamon rolls count as healthier?  Imma say yes.  Why not?)

If you really aren’t into whole wheat, check out these bad boys:  Nanny’s Cinnamon Rolls.  Yummmm!

Or these:  Apple Jelly Tea Rolls.  So good.  Soooo fall-ish.

Pictures of the kiddos you say?  Why, sure!

Cael's Fedora

Jude's new hat

{Hats all around.  Cael wearing his uncle’s fedora, and Jude’s new hat knit by a great friend of the family}

I have a hat fetish.  There are so many awesome hats that look absolutely adorable on little boys…  *sigh.

Dark Chocolate Buche de Noel

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This post is thanks to leftovers (because technically, I should be making supper right now, but HALLELUJAH – I HAVE LEFTOVERS!  And good ones at that!), and someone who told me today she’d been reading my blog.  That does wonders for my motivation.  So does chocolate.  Dark Chocolate Christmas Logs.  In the summer.  It is only 6 months till Christmas, by the way.  You can hit me now.  I’ve been singing Christmas carols since May.  Man.  I think something may be wrong with me.  Help!

Dark Chocolate Buche de Noel

{The final product.  So good.  Seriously.}

So, I made this one ages ago, and it was sooo good.  But I have this lazy gene, and it prohibited me to take the time to write out the whole recipe…  But I’ve decided to fight that nasty gene and just do it.  It’s totally worth it.  And before you say, “Hey Kayleigh, this looks like a lot of work… I don’t have time!”, let me just tell you that yes, you DO indeed have time for this particular recipe.  Even if you don’t, you’ll find time, make time even.  Add an extra hour to your already full 24-hr day.  Do it.  Who needs sleep?  (That’s what always gets put on the back burner for me.)  This log of chocolate goodness is just yelling to be made, and more importantly, eaten.  I think I made it for Thanksgiving last year (told you it was ages ago!  Wow!), and it was enjoyed by all who ate it.  Like, more than enjoyed.  There were lots of sighs and grunts of pleasureful eating.  I might even be making up words here.  How about, plenjoyfeating (pleasure-enjoy-ful-eating)?  I think that about describes it.  Of course, if you don’t like chocolate, you may not like this (and I might not like YOU!).  Really though, I’d still like you.  I’d just wonder what part of your brain wasn’t working quite right, and if that affected any other likings to awesome food-things.

There are a lot of different steps to this recipe.  Don’t let that scare you away.  Just don’t.

Roll her up!

{Make the jelly roll cake, roll it up in a dish towel so it doesn’t crack after you fill it!}

Okay, now I’ll type out that recipe.  Please make this.  If you don’t, please call me.  I’ll make it.  You’ll come over.  We’ll plenjoyfeat it together.  Pretty please with a dark chocolate covered strawberry on top.  (I’ll take any excuse to make a dessert, really.)

Chocolate crackle.  YUM!

{Melt chocolate.  Cool it.  Crackle it!  Soooo much chocolate!}

Dark Chocolate Buche de Noel

Slightly adapted from Canadian Living Holiday Favourites 2011

Cake:

1/4 cup milk

2 Tbsp butter

3/4 cup flour

1 tsp baking powder

pinch salt

5 eggs

3/4 cup sugar

1 Tbsp icing sugar

Place milk and butter in a bowl, and microwave until butter is melted.  Stir, keep warm.  In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt, set aside.  Separate 3 eggs, dropping yolks and white into separate bowls.  Beat egg whites until foamy; beat in 1/4 cup sugar, about 1 Tbsp at a time, until soft peaks form.  Beat together egg yolks and remaining eggs and sugar until pale and thick enough that batter leaves ribbons on surface when beaters are lifted, about 5 minutes.  Fold in egg whites.  Add flour, fold until combined.  Pour in milk mixture, fold in until blended.  Spread in 15×10-inch parchment paper-lined, rimmed baking sheet.  Bake in 350F oven until golden and cake springs back when lightly touched, about 12 minutes.  Loosen edges with knife, and flip onto a flour-covered dish towel.  Carefully peel off paper, and roll cake, starting from the short side.  Let cool on rack.

Frosting coated!

{Make chocolate frosting and coat the cake.  So much goodness.  Don’t be perfect.  Nobody will notice that you put most of the frosting on the end that you’re going to eat…}

Icing:

1 cup margarine, softened

1/3 cup whipping cream

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

2 cups icing sugar

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate, melted, and cooled

In a bowl, beat butter, slowly adding whipping cream, and vanilla.  Beat in icing sugar, 1 cup at a time.  Beat in chocolate until fluffy.

Roll it up!

{Roll it up!  It should be super easy if you rolled it up in a dishtowel earlier}

Chocolate Bark Crackle:

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate

Melt chocolate in a double-boiler, or in the microwave, stirring occasionally.  Pour into 15×10-inch parchment paper-lined baking sheet.  Refrigerate for 10 minutes.  Break or tear chocolate into pieces.  Arrange on a tray, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm.

Add some more CHOCOLATE

{Add some more chocolate.  Why not?  You need something to stick that crackle to anyhow…}

Unroll the cake, spread with 1 1/2 cups icing.  Re-roll without towel, and place (seam down) on a serving dish.  Cover with remaining icing.  Stick chocolate crackle to the icing.  Sprinkle with icing sugar.  Refrigerate until cold.  Voila!  C’est ca!

Who else is enjoying this Maritime summer weather?  A week of gorgeous sunny, warm weather, followed by a week of dreary, cold, gray days.  Oh well.  At least it’s not all dreary.  Last week, me and my sidekick had breakfast, coffee and bubbles on the doorstep, while Daddy and Jude slept in.

Coffee and nectarines on the doorstep

I hope these days never end.  Spending time like that with my kids is amazing.  I’m super thankful that I can take the time to do that.  God pours his blessings down in so many different ways.  Amazing.  And time just goes by so fast, it’s insane.  Thanks for those long summer days.

Mommy and super boy!