Tuesday, February 24, 2009
The whole concept of the book is that the authors have figured out a recipe and method for making a large batch of dough (enough for four 1-pound loaves) and storing it in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. When you need some fresh bread you cut off a chunk of dough, do a little magic (cloak it, let it rise for 40 minutes and then bake it for 30 minutes) and you have fresh bread. A one pound loaf is pretty small but I think that's the whole point of the book. It's only supposed to last one meal. Tomorrow I can bake another batch. It's that simple. I'm really excited to try out a more rustic loaf and a rye loaf and some other shapes. This was a boule but I might shape the next loaf as two small baguettes. The possibilities seem endless. Once again I'm rethinking this notion I have of myself as a cook- not a baker. So I don't like desserts. So what. Bread is the ultimate in baking.
We have entered birthday season in Talia's class. She attended two parties this past weekend and no doubt has a few more coming up in the spring. This 5 set came out really well. I had to piece the bottom trim together from a fat quarter I had and didn't have enough to add it to the top so I altered the twirly skirt pattern. I added two inches of length to the top of the skirt and folded the top down to make a casing. It worked beautifully and I think I will continue to do it that way. Most kids wear their shirts out so the top trim will rarely be seen and it was a little too much work for me. I had trouble turning it on the Care Bears skirt and it came out a little wonky. I also made the same skirt for Talia in the ugly heart fabric she picked out herself. I coerced her into letting me add a more contrasting fabric for the trim-- she had picked a black fabric with pink and red heart as the main fabric and then a black fabric with red lips on it for the trim. Luckily I was able to use a bright pink fabric with multicolored heart lollipops on it instead. I did promise a shirt with the red lips though. Wonder how I'll get out of that one. The fabric is so ugly...
The reason I'm making so many skirts is that I'm procrastinating on three baby quilts (all three babies have been born already!). I think I finally settled on a quilt design for the first one. I was completely stumped. The quilt is already basted so it should be quick from here on. Hopefully I can even finish it this week. Wish me luck.
Friday, February 20, 2009
tutorial from "house on hill road." It's a pretty easy skirt and I have since made another one (for another birthday). Talia picked out fabric (ugly fabric, in my opinion) for one of her own. In the end I did add a Care Bear stuffed animal to this package. I went to a thrift store and they had tons of them. I found the one that looked new and added it to the gift. It was on sale. For $2.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Sunday, February 15, 2009
In another related story, I also made fresh biscuits last night. I made some Tibetan lentil soup (from the Moosewood Daily Special Cookbook) and I wanted to make some sort of bread to go with it. I'm starting to get into breads that don't have a long rising time because I can't have that much forethought. A few weeks ago I made roti, which was delicious. Last night I chose biscuits because they seemed easy. They didn't exactly go with the lentil soup but they were definitely yummy. I always say I'm not a baker. Maybe I'll have to amend that.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
I felt really rushed to get Talia's valentines done for school. I wanted to have Talia help me with everything but there just wasn't time after our vacation. Plus, there wasn't really any moment I had with just Talia and not Alex, who would not have done well with a big package of birdseed or the oven. I baked up little heart shaped birdseed feeders using the recipe from Family Fun magazine (3/4 c birdseed, 2 tbl flour, 2 tbl water mixed and pressed into cookie cutters or muffin tins and baked at 175 degrees for an hour. Insert a straw for the hole and leave it in during baking). I found these cute bird valentines online and printed them. Talia is still working on signing each one-- she can only do about 8 before going bonkers. There are 22 kids in the class plus 3 teachers. I packaged them up into ziploc bags that have hearts printed on them. They are quite cute but were definitely a pain in the ass to make. Plus I'm afraid the kids will think they are cookies or granola bars. I'm sure someone will try to eat them.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
One of the major attractions at our resort in the Dominican Republic was a circus school. There was a trampoline, tightrope, juggling and a trapeze. I quietly hoped against hope that Talia would be up for it. After a few days of watching she gave it a try. She now says the scariest part was a long long ladder she had to climb up. In the middle of the ladder she had to climb around to the other side. For someone who cries when Mommy goes to the grocery store and leaves her home I really thought she was going to chicken out. She did a great job, although she looked really scared the whole time. Afterward she said she "liked it a little and hated it a lot." A week later she is speaking of the experience fondly. There was opportunity for adults to try it but we never got around to it-- it was during Alex's nap time when we were all relaxing in the villa.