Tuesday, June 24, 2008

look what I made

Well, Lorne helped.

William Logan arrived at 3:50 AM on Friday the 13th. This means that the winner of our little contest is our friend Lisa, who guessed 4 AM on Friday the 13th. He's a little bit gigantic and awfully cute. We're pretty happy. I have some of Lisa's prize completed, but things have been a little hectic since Will arrived (who knew babies took up so much time?), so I'll finish it up and post pictures at a later date.

Will was 11 lbs, 5 ounces at birth. He's lost a little weight since then, but I'm pretty sure he's storing at least four or five pounds in his cheeks. It gets tiring carrying all of that adorableness around, so we're going to go take a nap.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

June is a busy birthday month.

Aside from our little dude showing up in June, my grandma, my mom, Lorne's mom and dad, and my friend Tammy all have birthdays in June. I'm probably forgetting someone else I know. Anyway, last week I was making all these bags to put up on the PenguinBot website (I swear, there will be shop there at some point - Lorne is just working out some bugs). When I finished this one, I realized that it just screamed Tammy. Hot pink + polka dots = Tammy.

As Tammy not only has a birthday this month, but will also be finishing up her Master's in Social Work, I figured I owed her a present. And for once, it was finished early. Unlike Margie's present. Or Katie's present. Or Miranda's. Or...well, just about everyone else this year. I've been slow.

A few weeks ago a fabric website sent me an email saying they had some of Amy Butler's newest line on sale, so I bought some for my stash. This is one of them. The dots remind me of olives. While I don't particularly care for the taste of olives, I like the way they look when they're stuffed with something. They look fun. This fabric looks fun. Tammy is fun!

Even Gracie likes it, and as you can see here and here and here, Gracie doesn't like much.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Did you know that Lorne is awesome?

Consider the following:

Fact: Lorne has made dinner every night for the last I don't know how many months.
Fact: Lorne tells me to sit down and relax while he does things like clean and do dishes.
Fact: Lorne painted this awesome toy box for our son.

Fact: We found the unfinished wood box at Michael's. We were about to buy it when Lorne found a 50% off coupon near one of the registers that went into effect the following day, so we came back the next day and got it for half off.

Fact: Lorne drew the Twins logo and the baseball on to the box.

Did you know that Lorne is awesome?! WERE YOU AWARE OF IT?!!?!

Monday, June 02, 2008

yellow cake with butterscotch frosting and apples

I think my nesting instinct is coming out in a desire to bake and sew. Last week I made some chocolate chip cookies to give to my co-workers, I've been doing a lot of sewing, and tomorrow I plan to work on some knit gifts I've been putting off for far too long. On Saturday I really wanted cake. Lorne and I have pretty similar tastes when it comes to non-dessert food, but our dessert leanings are pretty opposite. He likes pie, I like cake. He likes lighter, fruity things, I like rich, chocolaty things. This cake was me trying to come up with something we'd both want to eat - I don't think being pregnant is enough of a reason for me to justify eating an entire cake by myself.

I turned to a few recipes I'd used before (I made cupcakes with the yellow cake recipe once, and the apples are from the caramel apple toffee cheesecake I made for Valentine's Day earlier this year) and one I hadn't (I really like butterscotch, so I just found a recipe for the frosting that looked good).

partially eaten cake

Yellow Cake

2 cups all-purpose flour, stirred before measuring
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
3/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Mix flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. Cream sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl, beating until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add half of the flour mixture then half of the milk.
Add vanilla. Mix until blended; add remaining flour and milk and beat until smooth. Fill 4 greased and floured layer cake pans(4 1/2 inch diameter) with the batter. Bake at 375° for 25 to 35 minutes, or until cake springs back when lightly touched near center.
Frost as desired.

Source: About.com Southern US Cuisine section

Apple Topping

4 green apples
4 TBSP butter
1/4 cup sugar

Peel and core the apples, then slice them thinly. In a heavy saucepan melt 4 TBSP butter. Stir in sugar and cook until the sugar starts to caramelize. Add the apples and cook them until they are tender. Cool.

Source: Culinary Concoctions by Peabody (I added another apple and a little more butter than her recipe.)

Butterscotch Frosting

1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons milk
2 cups powdered sugar

Melt butter in saucepan. Add brown sugar; bring to a boil over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in milk; bring to boil, stirring constantly. Cool to lukewarm. Gradually add powdered sugar. Beat until thick enough to spread.

Source: CDKitchen.com

cake guts

Though I bake cupcakes fairly often, I don't think I've made a regular cake since I was 13 or something. My lack of cake experience led to some mistakes, but luckily, none of them were fatal.

Mistake 1: The only cake pan I have is a 9" silicone one. Greasing and flouring it didn't go very well, and then when I tried to take the cake out of the pan it was still a little warm and a lot of cake bottom stuck to the silicone thing. Whoops.

Mistake 2: I was planning on putting the apple topping stuff on top of the frosting. Even as I told Lorne of my plan for topping and frosting the cake, I started putting the apples on the unfrosted cake. I blame pregnancy brain. I ended up slathering the frosting on top of the apples, which worked okay, but the cake ended up a little less pretty and a little more lumpy than I'd planned.

lumpy frosting
Despite the mistakes, it's pretty much the most delicious cake ever, and we both really like it. Hooray!