Archive | March 2012

Baking Bonanza

During the winter my husband and I enjoy baking, especially since we tend not to use our oven for months on end once the DC temperature sky rockets. This change in our kitchen habits usually occurs in late spring/early summer. However this year has been unique and despite only being March I think we have nearly reached the end of baking season. With temperatures staying in the 70s and 80s, it’s not going to be long before we shun the oven completely.

Since we are trying to be healthier in 2012, we’ve been baking far less than usual. We’ve really only been making fancy confections for special occasions and have been straying away from our usual cookies and muffins. In the past month-ish my husband and I have made a Dutch apple “pie” for my sister-in-law’s birthday, chocolate peanut butter oatmeal cookies (totally a health treat…they had oatmeal!), a king cake for Mardi Gras, and the offensively named (but deliciously tasting) car bomb cupcakes for St. Patrick’s Day.

Trying out these new dessert options has been an adventure for us — especially when making our own lattice crust was involved! And because each of these sweet treats have been made to share, we have been doing our best not to eat too many baked goods and stick to our slightly healthier new year habits.

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Plant Problems

Despite my fairly green thumb with outdoor gardening, I seem to have black thumb when it comes to our indoor plants. No matter how I try (and apparently I don’t try very hard), I have a way of helping all plants that cross our threshold to an untimely demise.

My husband finds this very disappointing. He would love for our house to be filled with plants to help keep the air clean and provide decoration. When he points out that another plant has died or asks when the last time I watered was, I do remind him that he also lives here and can water said plants as well as I can. However as the one who is home the majority of the time the houseplants have become my de facto responsibility. Bad idea.

Thankfully we happen to have one plant that is strong enough to survive my inattentiveness (so far). I tend to wait until it looks like the top picture before I realize I can’t remember when the last time I watered it was (oops). Thankfully it has always sprung back to life only a few hours after I quench its thirst.

Apparently none of our other plants have been so desperate to survive, but we keep on trying and I keep on ending their plant lives a little bit sooner than expected.

Lovely Lisa

It’s been about a week since our seventh foster — Lisa — found her forever home. She was our first chocolate lab and as a two year old (or 14 in dog years) she showed her teenage-ness by testing her boundaries, but also by still wanting to be part of the pack.

Lisa spent about a week with us and we quickly got used to her puppy ways. Most of the time she liked to be near the action. But if she wandered off and things were a little too quiet, it meant she was probably standing on the couch looking out the window. As soon as we caught her, she gave us an “I know, I know, I’m not supposed to be up here” look and got right down. If she wandered off and we heard too much noise, it meant that she was probably, um, having her way with her bed… We did our best to put a stop to this behavior, but we didn’t have too much luck.

When the weather was nice, Lisa loved looking through the front gate and watching the world go by. Or she would come lay at our feet in the kitchen while we were cooking or doing dishes. On the rare occasion we had to put her in her crate, she didn’t like to leave us, but she would willingly go in after a little prodding (and the knowledge that she would get a bacon treat once she was settled).

Just like our other foster dogs — particularly Ian and Princess Honey — Lisa quickly felt like part of the family and we were really sad to see her go. But her forever parents report that she is loving life with them and we are glad she is thriving in her new home.