Yes, you read that correctly. I have paired the quintessential salty smoke cured meat, bacon with the creamy goodness of chocolate. These cookies are crisp and and the salty smokiness of the apple wood smoked bacon bounces off of the creamy sweetness of the chocolate beautifully. You will receive at least one dozen cookies. You should probably order two though. People will actually expect you to share.
I recommend the Milk Chocolate version for the ultimate salty sweet combination, but if you love darker chocolate, a semi-sweet version is available as well.
If you want to order these from my new Etsy shop, you can order them there as well.
I am VERY excited. I am taking an online Photography class! It’s actually a holiday pictures class with Katrina Kennedy.
I think I can capture food pictures quite nicely. Food always hold still and I am sure to photograph them earlier in the morning when the light coming in from my dining room window is perfect. However children opening presents and older relatives do not hold still. So I am really looking forward to lessons on how to capture pictures of these HIGHLY scrap-able, memorable moments. Here are a couple of examples of my untrained attempts from last year.
If this is something you are interested in learning, you should join me. It will be a good time!
Forgive me. This will be a photoless post.
So Alton was a dream napper and sleeper. A classic Baby Wise baby who put himself to sleep that did not like to be rocked to sleep. Once he started complex grains, he took two hour and a half naps and then at about 15 months, he transitioned beautifully to one three hour afternoon nap, starting at noon thirty.
Before I got pregnant with Lottie-dah, I had mentioned to Travis it would be nice to be able to rock the next baby to sleep on occasion.
Be careful what you wish for.
When Lottie was a newborn, she was not a classic Baby Wise baby. She was firmly a Happiest Baby on the Block baby and needed love, cuddles and all five of the 5 Ss. (Swaddle, sway, swatting (gently), sucking and shhhhing.) It was a complicated but effective method, but at about 5 months she grew out of needing assistance to sleep and would fall asleep on her own.
I don’t know why I thought that when the time to transition to one nap came that it would be an easy transition.
First of all, she is transitioning WAY sooner than her brother did. Secondly, she seems to think that she doesn’t need a nap at all. And third, when she does finally fall asleep in the car, she seems to think that a 10 minute car nap is exactly the same thing as a 2 hour nap.
So in summary, today:
Going to sleep noises = NEGATORY
Mocking your parents noises = check and double check
At least they are happy noises as she stands up in her crib, right?
So most of you know that I scrapbook heavily. Halloween is one of the holidays that inspires digital scrapbooking designers to create some SUPER cute kits. So naturally I had a list of kits I wanted to use. Like this one from Designs by Megan Turnidge.
Frightfully Delightful by Designs by Megan Turnidge
All I needed was the perfect photo.
Alton was handsome in his Iron Patriot Costume, and Lottie was an ADORABLE lady bug. I set them both down on the sofa and prepared to take the perfect Halloween sibling photo. What I got was this:
Lottie and Alton after trick or treating
I did get a cute one of her before hand, but I really wanted one of them together.
and imposing Alton…
Perhaps I will have better luck next year… How did you do with capturing the perfect photo this Halloween?
When your baby is crawling, wood floors are NEVER clean enough. Their little ensembles will attract EVERY stray dog hair and piece of dirt in the whole of your home. (Perhaps that Swiffer onesie is not such a bad idea after all.)
Apparently being put into a pack and play with some of your favorite toys to keep someone off of said wood floors while mommy vacuums and mops is torture. Be a dear and let the State Department know.
Walls that don’t move attract the other dirt and dog hair that the baby’s outfit did not accumulate. Especially in a small area with a ceiling fan.
It is always a blessed day when you have this sitting across from you:
September 9th,2013 Family Life
Homemade really is better. I had always heard that making wheat bread was difficult, and made tough inedible bread. This time I decided to give it a whirl anyway, and I am so glad I did.
A light crust on the outside, and a tender fluffy middle on the inside, who knew wheat bread could taste and smell so good? Terrific for sandwiches; makes killer toast, you might not ever buy store bought again.
I had a few requests for the recipe I made, so here it goes:
Oatmeal Wheat Bread
by Jen Graham (Revised from a couple of King Arthur Flour recipes)
1/8 teaspoon of ginger
2 1/2 tsp or one packet of yeast
1 1/4 cup of warm water
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
1 1/2 Cups of Bread Flour
1 1/2 cups of wheat flour
1 cup old fashioned oats (not instant!)
1 1/2 Teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons of room temperature butter
1/4 cup of bread flour (as needed)
Directions for bread machine:
Add ingredients in the order recommended by your bread machine and let it do it’s thing.
Directions for stand mixer:
Mix together the Wheat flour, salt and oatmeal. Set aside.
Add the water, ginger, yeast and brown sugar to the mixer bowl. Let stand until the yeast proofs. (5-10 minutes) Turn the stand mixer on to 2, then add the bread flour, a little bit at a time, (at least 3 adds) until it is all incorporated.
Then add the wheat flour, salt, and oatmeal in small batches, (at least three). At this point you will most likely need to switch over to your bread hook for kneading.
After all of the flour has come together, add the room temperature butter. Knead on 2 for at least five minutes. If the dough seems like it is still pretty sticky and unlikely to form a smooth ball, add the extra 1/4 cup of bread flour as needed. You need to let the bread knead for a total of 5-10 minutes. You will know that it is kneaded properly when you can window pane it. It will also no longer be sticking to the mixing bowl, but should form a nice ball on it’s own.
Remove from the mixer bowl, and store in a greased bowl, cover it, and allow to rise for one hour.
After one hour, grease a 9×5 stone ware pan, punch down the dough and form it into a log. Place the log into the greased bread pan, and cover with greased plastic wrap. Allow to rise for an hour in the pan, until it rises about an inch over the edge of the pan, and then bake in a preheated 350 oven for 30-40 minutes. If you prefer, you can gently score your dough right before baking so that an indentation forms. Be careful not to score too deeply, you don’t want to deflate the dough.
If you make this, please comment and let me know how it turns out! If you just want to buy some home baked goodness, click here.
So Travis and I were making breakfast the other morning, and he was making his cereal WRONG. He likes it mushy, so he piles no less than three different kinds of cereal into one bowl, douses the whole pile with cow milk, (eew) and, HE LETS IT SIT THERE.
He just let it sit there, letting the milk ooze into the crevices of his cereal, making it soggy and as far as I was concerned, rendering his entire bowl of cereal completely inedible.
“Dude, your cereal is ready. You should eat it before it gets mushy.”
“I like it mushy. I am waiting for it to attain it’s full glory.”
“Eeew.” “Crunchy is better. Clark W. Griswold didn’t develop the non-nutritive cereal varnish for nothing.”
“I guarantee you that non-nutritive cereal varnish doesn’t exist, and if it did, it wouldn’t be on Trader Joe’s cereals.”
“Oh I know, but the point remains, crunchy cereal is better. If it wasn’t non-nutritive cereal varnish wouldn’t even fictitiously exist.”
So who is right? The serial cereal musher or the crunchy granola mama? What level of crunch do you prefer your morning bowl-o to attain or maintain?
So Alton got his first sunburn today. My girlfriend took him to the beach while I stayed home with a napping Lottie. I had painstakingly applied SPF 50 to his little pink body, but it was no good. Sunscreen only lasts about 80 minutes and it is no good if it’s not reapplied after that. When we go, we normally sit under a big umbrella, and we don’t stay more than two hours. So I didn’t even think to send him with more sunblock to be applied later. Bad mama.
Alton’s sunburn aside, we are using a new sunscreen that we LOVE. It smells like an orange creamscicle. It’s called Ocean Potion and it has cream, spray and a special facial formula. When we remember to diligently use it, it works very well!
So my question is this, do you tan or sunburn? What SPF do you use? Do you have a favorite sunscreen?
My brother, his wife and their son came over for dinner last night. We grilled brats, hot dogs and zucchini, and I made potato salad from scratch. We were supposed to have beans too, but I thought we had some and we did not. LOL We very often during grilling season have friends over for dinner. Alton truly believes with every fiber in his being that if the BBQ is lit, that someone must be coming over. He feels a deep sense of loss if it ends up being “just for us”. I do believe that he has inherited his mother’s hospitality gene.
I actually LOVE having people over, and when we had a dining room, I would often dig out my china and have people over. Now that we have a tiny place, We mostly just have people over for a BBQ in the backyard. I think in Southern California, the back yard has become an extension of the home, and most newer places have built in entertaining areas. (We just have a patio to the side of the grass here, no built in BBQ.)
We do still have people over during the non-grilling season, but only people I know VERY well who won’t mind that fact that we are sitting on top of each other. LOL
So do you ever have dinner parties? Do you entertain at all? Backyard, inside or formal dining?
Last night Charlotte had her first bath in the big kid bath in our bathroom. She looked so cute surrounded by the bubbles and munching on her shower foof. Because someday she will be a grown up and embarrassed by bare chested pictures of herself, this post will remain photoless.
Which leads me to today’s random question. What do you call your shower stuff? I guess it is technically considered a mesh sponge, but for some reason not entirely sure to me, we call ours a foof. I think Travis started calling it that. I have heard loofah, sponge and other names. What do you call yours? Do you just use a wash cloth?
Secondly, what kind of soap do you use? Whatever is there? Something you hide from the kids? The kids leftover Johnson and Johnson?
We use four different soaps in our family of four. We use Burt’s Bees on Charlotte because it’s gentle and it smells nice. Alton uses Suave for Kids Coconut shampoo, and Dove soap for his skin. Travis uses something manly smelling, currently the Dove for Men I think, and I use assorted Bath and Body Works stuff. I just opened a new bottle this morning and I don’t like it. A trip to the mall be in order later.