Monday, November 29, 2010

Pancake dips!


I don't know about you, but as a kid I LOVED to dip things. My kids are no different. Despite lacking the motor skills to pull it off without needing a bath, D loves to dip things. T is in that toddler phase where she's perfectly willing to make an entire meal out of ketchup.
I can't trust T not to discard her fork and use her fingers to eat her pancakes. This gets to be really messy if I put any toppings on them for her.
What I like to do instead is to make dippers for her to dip in. It's so easy. Which is an important feature of a toddler breakfast recipe for me. T comes out of her bedroom and heads straight for her table for breakfast. Meanwhile I'm still trying to rub the blur from my vision.


To make I mix 2 parts jam to one part juice. (For my toddler I just used tablespoons, though I don't measure it, I just eye it) To get the juice and jam to mix well I microwave it for 15 seconds.


Today I made peach with apple juice.

Peach-Apple Pancake Dip
2 Tbsp Peach Jam
1 Tbsp Apple Juice
Combine in a small microwavable dish. Microwave for 15 seconds on high. Stir until the jam and juice combine to a nice dipping sauce consistency. For a thicker dip add more jam. For a thinner dip add more juice.


You can make this with just about any jam and juice. Though I've never tried a citrus juice with this, if you try it let me know how it goes!
Here are some that I've made that have been a big hit.

Strawberry-Pineapple Pancake Dip
2 Tbsp Strawberry Jam
1 Tbsp Pineapple Juice

Cran-Raspberry Pancake Dip
2 Tbsp Raspberry Jam
1 Tbsp Cranberry Juice


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Santa Photos

The classic Santa photo.
I don't know if I'm going to try it this year.
I took the girls for some portraits and T would not sit still for them. I don't imagine adding a strange fat man in a costume would help ease her into it at all.

Recently I found a copy of a Santa photo from when me and my siblings were little. I'm not sure how old I am here. I'm going to share it. Partly because I know I have friends who will enjoy seeing a younger me. Also partly because I have friend I know will enjoy the mild embarrassment it causes me to post it.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

My Chore Chart Chalkboards

I've implemented a meal plan system that is working well for us. Now I need a way to tell everyone what's for dinner. I also need a way to let people know what my expectations of them are.
Admittedly at 11 months and 2 years my girls are too young for the chore portion to work for them. Right now it's all about teaching me to organize better. And to actually state my expectations. I can't get upset that my husband hasn't unloaded the dishwasher if I never told him to do it.
So here's what I've got. (There are a few frames missing because I need to find ways to mount them to the wall)

I found some great frames at my local antiques/consignment shop. The largest one was only $20! Brought them home and took out all the glass and backings leaving just the frame. I wanted a uniformly clean look so I spray painted them all with a glossy white.
Then for about $15 at home depot I bought some masonite board and chalkboard paint. I painted the whole board and then marked on the back where the cuts needed to be made by tracing the glass inserts that came with the frames. Once the board was cut each piece fit perfectly into its frame. Then all I had to do was hang them up.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Maple-Bacon Popcorn

I made something tonight that I want to share with you.

I was working on the recipe for vegan marshmallows. After several failed attempts with agar-agar flakes I've opted to go a different route tomorrow. In the mean time I had some great snackers in the house that I wanted to make something new for.

A few weeks ago we picked up a ridiculous amount of maple smoked bacon from the local bulk food store. After making pasta carbonara with the stuff it became clear that the maple flavor was too strong to use it in any savory dishes.

The house smelled like maple syrup for days. It gave me the idea to make popcorn with the stuff. I want to share the recipe with you so you can make it too.

Silicon spatula, candy thermometer

8 cups air popped popcorn*
1 cup maple syrup
2 tbsp butter
1 pkg bacon

Spray a big bowl with non-stick spray. Cut the bacon into pieces. I like to use my kitchen scissors to cut the bacon into 1/2" - 3/4" strips shortwise. Fry it up, drain the extra fat. Toss the cooked bacon with the popped popcorn in the coated bowl.
In a small pot cook the maple syrup and the butter until it reaches a temperature of 310F. Quickly pour the syrup over the popcorn and bacon stirring while you pour to coat as much as you can.

*you can use a bag of popcorn for this, but air popped is way better

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A second birthday

T turns 2 on the tenth. (Say that ten times fast)
We had a party for her yesterday with some of her favorite people. Grandpa was there, spoiling her rotten. Her best friend, S, moved to Indiana a while ago and was back in town for a visit! The girls loved seeing each other!

Her boyfriend, F was there too! They cuddled on the chair for a while. And when it was time for him to head home the two of them hid under the table.

I can't ice cupcakes at all but I can make toppers! These were so easy.
I cut out a template in the triangle shape I wanted the flags to look like. Then I folded the patterned cardstock I was using and cut the shape along the fold so I had an elongated diamond shape. I ran the cutouts through my Xyron sticker maker. Wrapped them around lollipop sticks et voila!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Christmas shopping!

I'm trying to get started on Christmas shopping.
I'm usually one of those people who forgets and ends up last minute shopping.
This year I'm on top of it.
but that also means I've been doing some shopping for myself too...
I make a point not to buy anything for myself in December because both Christmas and my birthday are in December. I don't want to be the person who buys themselves something only to have a duplicate given as a gift. I don't want to make myself harder to buy for than I already am.
But since it's not yet December...

I bought this for myself from Zwzzy!. I highly recommend her store. Vintage clothing is a serious weakness for me.

It arrived today and I love it!

I've been eying these bowls from nightowlcraftworks. I really love the color! I'm probably going to get them for my Dad. I never know what to get him and these would be perfect!

Who's your hard to buy for person? Any thoughts on what you're getting them?