Monday, August 18, 2014

Baby Pool

We are that annoying couple.
The one that most of you don't understand.
(in many ways probably)
But we are waiting to find out the gender of our precious baby until he/she is born.

And we are withholding the names as well.

Actually one of you out there knows the girl middle name. And its possible someone remembers the girl name I never changed from 10 + years ago that we have always liked.

But no one knows our boy name.
The fact is, we don't even really know. Its still a point of contention.
I suppose we have to decide soon. We are only 3 weeks from the due date. But todays dr. appt alluded to a potential earlier delivery. But we still don't know.

And so for fun. Lets make a game. A guessing game. We've created a baby pool.
What are we having?
Boy? Girl?
I'm pulling for human.

And what shall we name said child?

Game also includes actual birth date guess ( I may subtract points if you hope for September 11), height and weight (of baby)

I might even have a prize for the winner.
If my post-pardum body allows me to get it to you before his/her first birthday.

And so...guess away... the official site to put your official guess in is below. If you put it on the blog alone I may or may not count it.


or copy and paste this:

Wednesday, August 6, 2014


Today I bulked up a little. 
After making Bill's requested birthday breakfast of chocolate waffles, I used the last of our vanilla, sugar and cocoa powder. There are few things I dislike more than running to the store for something basic like that. So I do stock up on those items. 

(In case you can't tell. That is a 10lb bag of sugar. It lasts for months. )

I do a fair amount of cooking and baking. Mainly from scratch. I admit I'm a little snobby in my kitchen these days about ingredients and not using box mixes. And I have had those days where I want to make chocolate chip cookies, only to realize that I'm out of brown sugar. Do I really want to put a bra on and go to the store? 

It was one of those days that I made a discovery this year that has changed my kitchen.  

I have learned how to make my own brown sugar and powdered sugar. 

Not only is it convenient, but it's also disgustingly easy. Like the food industry has been tricking me into believing I am incompetent my entire life. Which they have.  (It also satiates part of my hatred of waste and garbage. Less packaging to throw away!)

So take this food industry...

Here is how you make brown sugar:

1 cup of regular granulated sugar (from my ginormous bag)
1-2tsp of molasses. (Depending on how dark/heavy you like it)

Put the 2 into your mixer of whatever sort. 
(This is my Kitchen Aid mixer. Got a deal on a refurbished one. Still pricey, but so worth it for my Betty Crockery kitchen needs )

Then you just mix them for like 5-10 minutes. Make sure you do it on a low setting. I tried it on a higher setting and they just never mixed. 

And ta-da!! Brown sugar! And it keeps! I have some in my pantry right now in a sealed Pyrex container that I made 2 weeks ago. 

So the other item is powdered sugar. I realized this after needing to make frosting for something and realizing again that I was out. And after I learned the brown sugar trick, I thought "I wonder if..."
I looked it up and it's even easier than brown sugar. Do you know what powdered sugar is? Just more finely ground sugar ! WTH!!!!

Powdered Sugar:

So I took a cup of sugar and put it in this... 
Yes it's the magic bullet. Don't judge me. Like you've never watched an infomercial and been sucked in?

Anyway. I put the sugar in here. And turned it on. And about 5 minutes later I had powdered sugar. 

I'm sure you can use a regular blender. Or food processor?

The only thing to keep in mind is that if you intend to use this for something like frosting, you need to add about a tablespoon of cornstarch. Before or after.  It just serves as a binding agent. 

This also keeps well in my pantry. Sealed of course. 

And there you have it. You don't have to wander the baking isle in the store anymore. I don't. With each of these 3 items for your sugar supply(which if you bake, you'll more than likely have these anyway)  a little goes a long way. (Granulated sugar, molasses and corn starch) 

It has changed my kitchen. Is super easy. And thought I would share with you.