Thursday, December 16, 2010

Thursday Thirteen 12/16/2010

1.  So, remember my last Thirteen where I said someone needs to combine wine and cake?  (See number 11 and the picture of the banana bread beer).  Well, someone came close!  Wine and brownies.  Flour made from grape seeds and skins is used to make the brownies.  Check them out:

2.  I finished reading Spoon Fed: How Eight Cooks Saved My Life and loved it.  C', memoir and a good read!  I loved the fact that you not only got to know the author but you got to know the chefs she encountered as well.  I just wish I was a foodie when I worked at the Culinary Academy.  I would have kept my eye out for these chefs.  I did meet Martin Yan from Yan Can Cook and both Martin and Charlie Sheen (Martin's daughter, Charlie's sister was graduating).  But wait, I've met Rachael Ray! Don't worry, she's the only "tv chef" in the book.  I was glad to discover that.  Anyway, if you're a foodie, read the book.
3.  My daughter is finally over her ear infection.  It took 2 rounds of antibiotics!  Poor girl.  She's already on daily antibiotics because of her neurogenic bladder.  Now she's taking 3 different medications.  I brought her to the doctor to get checked after she kept pulling at her ear and crying that it hurts.  My son ended up getting a flu shot while we were there.  Then he got sick a few days later.  Sheesh.

4.  My son's social class had a bake sale.  Sadly, he missed it because he was sick.  He was so, so bummed.  But he made special requests for the bake sale and we got to deliver them to the sale and some to the neighbors.

5.  For the Bake Sale I made:

Red Velvet Whoopie Pies

 6.  I also made these:

Apple Pie Pockets
In my little guy's hands.
Packaged and ready to be sold!
7.  And, last but not least, for the Bake Sale I also made these:

Triple Chocolate Cookies
Two dozen fit perfectly in the box I got.

8.  I took a class at The Bar Method and really enjoyed it.  I wasn't sure what to expect.  I work out 4-6 days a week with running and strength training, mixing those up with intervals or throwing a long run in, but I wanted to try something different.  The Bar Method was definitely different and I was pretty sore afterwards.  It worked my legs in ways I never had so I was sore it places I've never been sore before.  I learned that FitTV has a similar show called Exhale Core Fusion and tried that workout later in the week.  Same concept, just a different name with the same soreness!  I ended up purchasing an Exhale DVD since I had a Borders coupon.  If you get the FitTV channel look it up and try it.  It LOOKS easy but it's pretty challenging.  I especially like it because I used to take Reformer Pilates classes (they got too expensive) and this felt better than those classes.  Plus, it's a change of pace to the stuff I usually do.

9.  We celebrated my birthday with Greek food for lunch and then a Chocolate Raspberry Mousse with Chocolate Ganache cake I made.  We usually find a place that specializes in cakes and wait in anticipation until it's someones birthday so we can order something, but this year I didn't see anything that appealed to me so I decided to make my own.  I learned a couple of things while making it.  First, when you're filling is light, your cake should be too.  I should have sliced the layers so that it wouldn't weigh down the mouse too much.  Second, if you slice slice the layers you can distribute the mousse much more evenly and it will look better.  Not that it tasted bad.  It was downright delicious.  It just didn't come out EXACTLY as I wanted it to:

10.  Every Thanksgiving I always make my pumpkin pie but then change up the pecan pie.  This year I made a German Chocolate Pecan Pie.  OMG!!!  Talk about a sugar rush.  After the first couple of bites I started calling it "Crack Candy Pie" because it was just like taking a bite out a candy bar in pie form and despite the fact that the sugar hits you immediately you come back for more.

11.  I finished reading The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake: A Novel.  The main character can taste the feelings of someone in the food they made.  Intriguing, yes?  It's a quick and entertaining read.

12.  My son made a paper turkey writing what he was thankful for on its feathers.  He wrote that he was thankful for me, his dad, sister, his friend Bryanna, candy, toys, firetrucks, windmills and of course helicopters.  The simple things!

13.  We saw Yo Gabba Gabba Live on Nov. 27 and we all had a blast.  It was like going to a rock concert.  I think I enjoyed it more than the kids.  Nicole Richie (and I guess her boyfriend/husband?) were there to do the "Dancey Dance".  Biz Markie was there to do "Biz's Beat of the Day".  We had a lot of fun.  The kids were dancing and I think at one point I was waving my hands in the air!  The following weekend, on Dec. 1 we saw Cinderella Live.  It was an awesome British Panto that really focused on the family and interacting with the audience.  Of course, that was my son's favorite part.  The very first act, one of the characters came on and said, "Hello Boys and Girls!" and my son responded back so enthusiastically that the actor turned to him and asked him what his name was and a couple more questions.  It was a wonderful experience.  Later the kids were invited onto the stage to dance the final number.  The singing and dancing numbers were set to music like "California Girls", "Low" and "Let's Get Loud" among other ingenious selections.  It was really geared toward adults and children.  It wasn't just a boring play that you brought your kids to and sat through it counting the minutes until it was over.  For example, the evil step-sisters were played by men in drag named "Seecrest" and "Cowel"!  Oh, and afterwards we had dinner close by and my son got the autograph of Jennifer Leigh Warren who played the Fairy Godmother.  She said she had heard about him backstage during the show.  I love the theater and hope my kids grow to love it as much as I do.

That's all!