Friday, May 29, 2009

Menu Time

I am trying to get back into the habit of planning a menu and shopping accordingly. It eliminates the "Oh Crap what should we eat now that everyone is starving" trips to Chic-Fil-A. Besides, we are having family photos at the end of June and I'd like to be rid of the last 10 baby pounds. So here is the menu for the upcoming week: (Click for larger image)

Even though almost every lunch is "Leftovers" we still end up having one or two meals that we don't get to at the end of the week; if we have the ingredients they will probably just get bumped to the beginning of the next week. Now to finish the grocery list.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Grace in Small Things

My first Grace in Small Things post...this is not too far off of what the therapist I saw for PPD suggested to me - making lists of positive attributes to interrupt my constant loop of self-criticism. Since postpartum depression has reared it's ugly head for the second time (1st and 3rd pregnancies, go figure) it would be good for me to resurrect my attempts to focus on what goes right each day. So my small things:
1. My baby blows raspberries when she gets excited.
2. When I snuggled Käthe as she woke up this morning she said "I love you little mama."
3. My attempt to transform Ella's threadbare-in-the-knees jeans into a skirt went far better than I expected, and she loves her new skirt.
4. While Käthe is at playgroup tomorrow I get to have coffee and sew while my baby sleeps*.
5. My in-laws impending visit means that I will have the motivation to finally get the house back in order.

*Assuming that baby naps - a rather hit or miss proposal. But I have decided that 2 hour naps in the swing are better than 40 minute naps in the crib (crawling baby means she only sleeps in my bed with me.) Thea taking a million short naps every day is doing neither of us any good. I am hoping to get her into the habit of sleeping for longer periods before transitioning into "sleeping for longer periods where I would prefer her to sleep".

Friday, May 08, 2009

Recipe Review - "Healthier" Fudge Brownies

Fudge Brownies from body + soul magazine. Some fat replaced with sweet potato puree, whole wheat flour instead of white.


Makes 12
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup sweet-potato puree
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon instant coffee powder

Directions (My suggestions/comments)

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8-inch square pan; set aside. Place cocoa powder into mixing bowl. In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt butter. Remove pan from heat, and stir into cocoa. Let cool slightly. (This gets very thick - I had a hard time getting it from the pan into the bowl of my stand mixer).
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Stir...sugar and sweet-potato puree into cocoa mixture, then egg. In a small bowl, stir together vanilla and coffee until coffee is dissolved; add to cocoa mixture.
  4. Add flour mixture to cocoa mixture and stir until no traces of flour remain. Spoon into prepared pan; smooth the top. Bake until surface of brownies looks barely dry and an inserted knife comes out with a few moist crumbs, about 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature before serving. I baked for about 30 minutes, it was ...paste-like? They are definitely gooey and fudgey, but also kind of dry. I know that seems like an oxymoron; they taste good nonetheless. They do not have that nice crisp shiny sugar top that regular brownies have, they are more like a very sticky cake.
Would I make them again - probably, though I may tweak it a bit to see if I can improve the texture.

My thoughts:
Directions were more complicated than they needed to be, if I do it again I will melt the butter and add it to the cocoa powder in my mixing bowl.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Readers, Schmeaders

The only time this blog has had readers of any sort was during the first NaBloPoMo, when I managed to post every day. I love having that record now, to look back at that moment in Käthe's babyhood and Ella's toddler days. I would especially love to have that sort of record all the time.
I have a hard time deciding what I want this "place" to be - journal of the girlies? My own thoughts - those tend to be pretty child-centric these days. So many different things this could be - a mommy blog, thoughts on postpartum depression, thoughts on being an orthodox Lutheran. I think about the blogs I see in my Google Reader - everything from the crafty, like Tree Fall to mommying: Balancing Everything; Looky, Daddy!; My Charming Kids; to the very Lutheran: Cyberbrethren; Weedon's Blog; St. Paul Chapel.
I guess what I am saying is that I don't know "who" to write to - because it seems that there are so many different genres that I enjoy. My best bet is probably to write whatever I want, if anyone likes it they will read, and if they don't they can just keep going.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Not Me! Monday

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

A few things that I didn't do this past week:
I did not pack up my sleeping kids (one sick, one exhausted, one napping) at 6:00 on Saturday evening, put them all (still sleeping) in various strollers and carts, and push them around the home improvement store. And if I had, I would not have considered it the closest thing to a date Ehemann and I have had in months (conversation! without! constant! interruption!).
I did not spend a great deal of time upholstering new cushions for my glider and ottoman in my living room, sewing on this tiny Ikea table:
Because my kitchen table was covered in various other things - clean laundry, groceries that needed to be put away, various sewing accoutrement, etc.
I did not make my husband strangely happy by making strawberry jam and buying him laundry detergent with scent (because I wash everything in unscented detergent). That would just be weird.
And I refuse to acknowledge that this beautiful baby girl turned six months old on Friday, and is rearing to be on the go: Check out that plank pose - forward locomotion is just a few days away.
And I would be lying if I said I was not inordinately proud of making my uncomfortable ugly rocker into this much more attractive and non-rear-end-numbing specimen: