Am I over thinking thoughts of human? After all only human

July 7, 2014

My Little Bumblebee

My apologies for the extended absence from regular blogging. I have been working on a different type of craft project =) Next month the mister and I will welcome out first born into the world. We have been busily attempting to ready ourselves for this wonderful addition. And this has left little time for projects or blogging on my part.

This past weekend my lovely mother hosted a baby shower for me and the theme was bumblebees. I was told I had to be very "hands-off" and couldn't help with the decorating, or the gifts, or anything for that matter. With all the cute ideas out there for bumblebees I had to get my hands dirty somehow. I decided a cute bib necklace would do the trick.

The shower was perfect. Thank you to all those who could attend, and to those who were there in spirit as well. Our new little bundle of joy has very generous friends and family and will be welcomed into the world with lots of love.

February 25, 2014

The Man of My Dreams

At the end of January I married the man of my dreams. We had a very simple ceremony at City Hall.

The mister and I have been a couple for nearly ten years, and friends for even longer. This wedding was more a confirmation of the vows we have been living all along. We wanted to keep it simple because that is how we live. No big show, no fancy party, just close friends and family members to celebrate the love that we share.

For us, our love and our life is what constitutes a marriage and we have had that for ten years. I am proud to now call Ryan my husband, he has been that in my heart all along.

October 27, 2013

Tree to Table

When I was younger my mom and I used to make a three hour drive south every fall to gather apples for the holiday baking season. When the Mister and I moved back to NY last summer I was disappointed to learn that due to the early thaw followed by a cold spell, there were fewer apples available and no local orchards were letting people pick their own. Luckily, this summer was better for apples and all the orchards were back open for picking! So, off we went.

We came home with an entire bushel of apples, close to 30 pounds, which looks like a lot more in my pantry than it did when we were standing in the middle of the orchard.

For my first apple dish I went with the ever popular apple pie. I love making it and the Mister loves eating it!

Next up is a nod to my German heritage with some apfelpfannkuchen, followed eventually by some baked apple oatmeal, and then probably another pie. Not to mention the apple a day that each of us are eating. I'm thinking that 30 pounds may have been too many apples for two people...anyone interested in some delicious baked goods?

As an aside, I'll share this photo to hopefully put a smile on your face. A while back someone that lives in this house and is not me got in a small fight with the container and then put it back in the drawer like nothing happened. Each time I grab for the cling wrap I have to giggle just a little as I imagine how the box came to look this way. Enjoy =)

October 24, 2013

Game Night

Some of my fondest memories are of friends and family gathered around a table playing games. From huddling at the neighbor's during the ice storm of 1998 for warmth and what felt like hundreds of games of Phase 10, to the first Thanksgiving I spent with the Mister's family. When we played SNL Trivial Pursuit and I learned that his sister cheats at Uno. I also learned that she likes to confess to cheating several turns past when any consequences can be doled out. Let's not forget winning Gestures and stunning my host family when I guessed modelleisenbahn correctly, or visiting friends from my hometown and playing Creationary while enjoying margaritas.

For a while the Mister and I had a regular game night scheduled. We had amassed quite the collection of games during our decade together branching out beyond your run of the mill Milton Bradley or Parker Brother's games (not that we don't enjoy these as well). We discovered Euro games and fell instantly in love. These games are often much more complicated than traditional board games, but they are always worth the effort. (I suggest you look into Dominion or Pandemic if you're interested). We kept our game night up for nearly a year, but then life seemed to place itself squarely in the way and we ended up making excuses and finding reasons for why we didn't have the time.

Recently we decided to reenact our game night. We did some rearranging of the rooms after the purchase of our new couch and we took this opportunity to create a game room. As we added a little bit of normalcy to our home with new living room furniture, we balanced it out with a reminder of the geekery that our relationship is built upon. 

Game nights got away from us in the past, so we have renewed our efforts to make the space for them this time around. Finding a couple hours on a Sunday night not only allows us to meet the new week with our energies refueled, but it also lets us reconnect with each other at the end of every week.

Plus, the Mister just bought a Pound-o-dice, so we are looking for any and every reason to use them!

October 8, 2013

Black Bean Dip

I recently remembered that once upon a time I loved black bean dip. I haven't had any in ages and I am pretty sure the kind I used to eat doesn't exist anymore. I currently eat much cleaner than I used to so I decided to try my hand at homemade bean dip.

There are tons of recipes for this dip online, in varying levels of difficulty. You can pretty much toss some black beans in a food processor with whatever other vegetables and spices that you like.

Most recipes suggest adding salsa, but I decided to add fresh vegetables instead. Along with the black beans, I added tomatoes, hot peppers, onion, garlic, cilantro, and lime juice. I kept the spices simple with salt, black pepper, and some cayenne. I put everything in the food processor and blended with a touch of olive oil to smooth it out. For a smoother dip you can use canned beans, but I am really opposed to eating things out of a can, so I opted to rehydrate the dried version.

September 23, 2013

Return of the Scarf

I've been playing with this purple yarn, on and off, for a few years now. I've started at least three different scarves, only to decide I didn't like them and take the stitches out again. I finally settled on a pattern that I was pleased with. I had intended for this to be an extra wide scarf, but at the last minute I changed my mind again and decided to try it as a cowl instead. Finally, the piece is finished, just in time for the return of colder weather and scarf season!

September 22, 2013

Honey Bourbon Cupcakes

Sometimes hobbies can be conflicting. In the past couple of years I have fallen in love with being more active. I also love to bake, and have since I was small. These two hobbies don't generally go hand in hand. Last summer I baked something nearly every weekend, this year I have focused more on fitness and have hardly baked at all. Last week I decided that I would whip up a batch of cupcakes over the weekend. No reason, just to bake.

The Mister and I sat down to decide what kind I should make, him on tapiture, me on pinterest (This, just one more example of how geeky our love is). He came upon these tasty little treats at Creative Culinary. So, off to the store we went to retrieve some Honey Burbon.

Both the Mister and myself are night owls, we always have been. We decided to bake these cupcakes at midnight on a Saturday. Baking is usually my thing, but this time the Mister played the role of my Sous Chef and measured out all the ingredients so all I had to do was combine them. He also took on the bourbon drizzle because he is in charge of sauces in this household. It was a wonderful evening!

The recipe we used made delicious cupcakes, but there are a few edits that might make the process a bit easier for the next time. Primarily much smaller batches of bourbon drizzle and buttercream.

For the Cupcakes:
3/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
3 Tbsp Honey Bourbon (there are a number of options to choose from)
3 Tbsp Milk

For the Bourbon Drizzle:
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup Honey Bourbon
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For the Buttercream Frosting:
3/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract 1 Tbsp Honey Bourbon
Heavy cream

Preheat oven to 350. Line 12 muffin cups with cupcake liners.

Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Add eggs and vanilla and mix just to incorporate.
Whisk together flour, salt and baking powder. Add to the wet mixture and beat until just combined.
Add the whiskey and milk until just combined.

Divide batter evenly into cups filling each approximately 2/3 full.

Bake for 16 to 20 minutes; test with a toothpick; the top will be firm so make sure the inside is cooked through.

Cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.

To Make the Bourbon Drizzle
Add all ingredients together in a small pan, bring to a boil and boil for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool before drizzling on cupcakes.

To Make the Buttercream Frosting
Cream butter until light and fluffy. Slowly add the powdered sugar.
Add the vanilla and Honey Bourbon and combine thoroughly.
Add the cream 1 Tbsp at a time until your frosting is very light and fluffy and the correct consistency, continue to beat on high for 3-5 minutes until very fluffy.

Pipe the frosting onto cupcakes. Garnish with the Bourbon Drizzle. 

Enjoy =)