Friday, November 16, 2007

Pumpkin Cookies!

I haven't done any food blogs for a while, but I've been baking a bit this week. I made a chocolate pumpkin pie on Monday with Sean and Ashton to help me, courtesy of the Baking Bites website. I modified that recipe a bit and instead of using canned pumpkin, I used a sugar pumpkin that I cooked and pureed myself. It took a little longer to bake because of the extra moisture, but it was worth the wait! It had a nice balance of chocolate and pumpkin, without either overpowering the other. This picture doesn't look like much, but you must forgive me since I forgot to take a picture before we dove into the pie. Couldn't wait that long!

Tonight I baked pumpkin cookies with a light brown caramel glaze using a recipe that was circulating around the staff members at my library. I love pumpkin anything, and since I had some left-over pumpkin puree (and since Ashton has been begging to bake cookies all week) I thought it would be a good night to bake them. The recipe was simple, and I learned how to make a successful caramel glaze! I'd seen my little brother, gourmet chef extraordinaire, make caramel for apple-dipping, but had never actually tried to make it myself. It seems to me the trick lies in browning the butter just right before adding the powdered sugar and milk and vanilla. But maybe that's just me. Anyway, these cookies were very tasty, with and without the glaze (didn't quite make enough, as you can see from the picture). Sean and Ashton sure enjoyed them anyway. :)

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Boys Update

I have some pictures I'd like to share, and just some general updates on how they're doing. First, we had our second parent-teacher conference this week, and both of them are doing really well in Kindergarten. They are really good at rhyming words because of all the nursery rhymes we sing together, and they are starting to learn some sight words such as "you, it, my, the, & and." They also can sound out short 3-letter words, and are reading the Colin Hawkin's series to me! They are very short picture books with one word on each page, and only the first letter changes. Each of the 5 books focus on a different short vowel sound. Other news, Sean and Ashton's molars are coming in! Sean's top two have poked all the way through, and the two on the bottom are just beneath the surface. None of Ashton's have come through yet, but there are big flat spaces and I can feel the teeth underneath with my finger. My babies are getting adult teeth! They keep asking me when their teeth will fall out. We've been talking and reading books about this topic lately 'cause I didn't want them to freak out when one of their teeth gets loose- I was 5 when I lost my first tooth, and I remember poking it back and forth with my tongue, and the grass tooth-pulling machine my older brother made to try to help pull it out! My grandma sure needed her grass cut that summer.

Other news, the boys made a new friend this weekend named Charlie. We met him at the park in Double Diamond through a mutual friend, Haley. Here are pictures of the four of them together:

Also, my boys are wiry like their Uncle Scotty, and shimmied right up the rock wall with no hesitations, again and again. Here is Sean's progression up the wall:

And here is Ashton- Are you noticing their great technique, keeping their hips close to the wall, and their toes turned out instead of trying to climb up like a ladder? I'm so proud!

And one final photo of them loungin' in the sun at the top together:

Thursday, November 1, 2007


I just wanted to post some pictures of the boys- their 5th Halloween, and the third in this neighborhood trick-or-treating. They have been asking me nearly everyday for the past 2 months if it was Halloween yet. And I would tell them, 2 weeks left, or 6 days, or not until tomorrow for the 10th time! Finally the big day came, and the question was, "No more weeks and no more days?!" That was Sean. Last night, Greg and Jess and Abbie came over for our 3rd Halloween together, and they boys were absolutely hyper-active! We didn't even get the chance to eat dinner before we HAD to go out begging for candy. Here's one of the boys (Sean is the Ninja Turtle, Ashton the Transformer) and Abbie:

And one without the masks:

And one of the boys with their hands in the pumpkin guts before we carved Jack-O-Lanterns (but don't be fooled by this picture- they were super grossed out with having slimy pumpkin strings on their hands, and I only got a smile 'cause they're such posers!):