Happy Gingerbread Men

December 1, 2009 1 comment

Seems I get the urge to do baking and trying new things this time of year.  Had the urge for something sweet and thought my family would like a healthy treat.  Found this recipe for oatmeal gingerbread cookies.  I am not a fan of oatmeal cookies or gingerbread but I thought it would be fun to decorate them.

Making Oatmeal Gingerbread Cookies

Making Oatmeal Gingerbread Cookies

You can see the oatmeal in the dough and it was a little dry.  I was concerned about that but they seemed to cut well.

Gingerbread Oatmeal Cookies

Into The Oven They Go

Into the oven they went.  They looked naked to me.  I added a raisin belly button.

Decorated Gingerbread Oatmeal Cookies

They are all smiling

Once I took them out of the oven they were happy.  Not sure if I would say they were the best cookie I ever ate.  Tasted like a little gingerbread and oatmeal mixed together.  Guess that is because that is what it was.  However, gingerbread and oatmeal do go together well kinda like peanut butter and chocoate.  I love the little guy in the middle.  Do you see the small one.  There was not quite enough dough left over so I created him out of what was left.

Oatmeal Gingerbread Cookies

December 1, 2009 2 comments

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter

    Plate of gingerbread men cookies

    Oatmeal Gingerbread Cookies

  • 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 3  1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups Quaker Oats (either quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions:

  1. Beat the butter and brown sugar  in large bowl until creamy.  Add molasses and egg, beat well.  Add combined four, oats, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg baking soda and salt, if desired, mix well.  Cover, chill about two hours.
  2. Heat oven to 350 F.  On floured surface, roll dough out about 1/4 inch thick for a chewy cookie or 1/8 inch for a crisp cookie.  Cut with gingerbread man or woman cookie cutter and place on an ungreased cookie sheet.
  3. Bake 8 or 10 minutes or until set.  Cool 1 minute on cookie sheet and remove to wire racks.  Cool completely.
  4. Frost and decorate cookies and store at room temperature.

Thanksgiving 2009

I think this was one of the best Thanksgivings ever.  I had a wonderful time cooking.  I must admit that I threw down some culinary skills this year.  I think I out did myself, if I do say so myself.  :-)

First of all I could not sleep so I woke at 2:30 a.m.  Played on the computer and wrote a post and about 4:00 a.m. I started cooking.  Started out baking a couple loaves of bread.  My DH probably thought the bread maker was broken.  He loves fresh bread and rags me if I don’t make him some.  I can always keep him quiet if I put some food in his mouth.

tropical carrot cake with coconut cream cheese frosting

Tropical Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting

I baked him an apple pie without sugar, which he ate for breakfast.  I think I like it better than any other apple pie I’ve eaten.  It was tart.  I always think that apple pie is too

sweet.   I would imagine that I’ll get a request to make him one again.

The baked double cheese and macaroni was the rave.  Sorry no pictures because by the time I would have had a chance, it was not picturesque.  It was tore up.  But I am keeping that recipe.  I’ll add that to one of the sides for Christmas this year I would bet.

But the prize was the Tropical Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting.  It is a triple carrot cake with pineapple and macadamia nuts, crystallized ginger and coconut.  It was super rich and I would suggest small slivers.  I am so full hours after the meal and I am tempted to grab me another peice before getting to bed.

DS and lovely girlfriend

Oldest and lovely girlfriend

This year we not only celebrated with all the DS but we also had a guest.  The oldest has been dating a lovely gal for nearly a year now.  She fit in quite well.   I hope she comes back next year.

The youngest is leaving tomorrow headed on a three week road trip to California.  I’m cool with it.

I am just glad to have them all here this year.  It was last year that youngest was in Iraq for Christmas. Which makes me so grateful to have the family together.  I pray for the others that are serving over seas and their families.  I pray that they will be back home soon with their own families.

As for now I hope to get to bed early since I’ve been up since 2:30 a.m.  Tomorrow I have an appointment and I’m back to work again.

No Sugar Applie Pie Recipe

November 26, 2009 2 comments

My first attempt to bake an apple pie.  I personally am not fond of apple pie but my husband does love it.  He has to watch his sugar intake so my quest was to find an apple

Apple pie

My first apple pie

pie recipe with no sugar.

Ingredients

  • 1 12 oz. frozen can of apple juice, thawed
  • 6 granny smith apples
  • 2 9 inch deep pie crusts
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Reserve  1/3 cup of thawed apple juice in a bow, set  aside, pour remaining juice in a sauce pan.
  3. Place peeled, sliced, cored apples in pan, boil on medium heat until apples are just tender.  Apple juice will not cover apples completely until they begin to boil.
  4. Add the cornstarch to the apple juice and cinnamon mix together
  5. Once the apples are tender, remove from heat, begin to add cornstarch mixture slowly.
  6. Pour apple mixture into pie shell.
  7. Place other shell on top of apple mixture and seal pie all the way around.
  8. Cut vent holes around pie
  9. Bake for 50 minutes, place foil around edges if needed to keep from burning.
  10. Serve warm with sugar-free vanilla ice cream.

My formal goodbye to 2009 – Early

November 19, 2009 8 comments

I am ready to start a new beginning.  Usually I don’t get this feeling at this point of the year.  It usually comes closer to January.  But I’m ready now.

I hope I don’t sound like a sourpuss but I’d like to skip the Thanksgiving & Christmas holiday and get right to the new year.  Starting with a good bottle preferably.

The end of 2009 is not the same as previous years.

I am ready to make a new world for myself.   Lord knows I have been on my knees more this year but probalby not as much as I should have been.  I’m not sure where the good Lord is taking me in my life right now but I’m okay with that as I have faith.   I’m really working on enjoying the moment & trusting Him.

2009 was a year of heartbreak, developing a tougher skin and more self acceptance.  This may sound like a bad thing but I don’t see it like that.  However, it has been one of the hardest years I’ve had to live.   I’m not going to pretend with you.

It has not been all bad, there have been some good times and some not so good times.  But I’m in the space now where I am more focused about where I am going and that is exciting.  I’m tired of the bull crap and I’m anxious about 2010, but I’m not willing to let those worries control me or the outcomes.

2009 has been pretty incredible.  I have met people who challenged me and in some cases feel as though my soul has been restored.  I have begun to find my own style of life.  I learned I am more resilient than I thought.  I learned pictures make connections.  My passion to be relevant became stronger and I’m even more determined not to compromise my own ideas.  I learned I have a long way to go to be able to express myself more lovingly & be less judgmental.  I feel more creative than I ever have which has made me feel like anything can happen, similar to when I was 20 years old and had the world by the tail, but tempered with the wisdom of age.  I know I have a story to tell and although it may not be a best seller I still have to tell it.  I KNOW I have had big things just on the edge of the horizon for a long long time and now I must believe and trust they can come to fruition.  I believe with all my heart that those big things are getting closer. I am on the right path.  I feel it in my heart of hearts now more than I ever have in my life that the world is mine for the taking.

An American Star @acummings

September 26, 2009 Leave a comment
A card & a star mean so much

A card & a star mean so much

Yesterday I went to my mail box and found a card from a friend.  I’ve read it many times since and still well up in tears.  Inside the card was a small 2″ embroidered star cut from an American Flag. In the card it read:

I am a part of our American Flag.  I have flown over a home in the U.S.A.  I can not longer fly.  The Sun and the Winds have caused me to become tattered and torn.  Please carry me as a reminder that you are not forgotten.

My friend, you are also an American Star in my eyes.  Thank you.

Just heard the word….

September 21, 2009 Leave a comment

Stopped by the marine center today in Lynchburg Va to find out when Charlie Company would be returning to the states.  I had gotten a few emails from the first Sargent who made it clear that this information would not be emailed or communicated by telephone. So I went down there personally.rawk

This is when I found out that it seems that Charlie Company has already left Iraq and headed back to the states.  Where exactly they are I am not sure.  Even if I knew I couldn’t tell you.  We are not suppose anything on line or anything.

I made it out of the building and back to the car after hearing this news before I started crying.  Tears of joy of course.  It is almost hard to believe that he will soon be home.  He’ll stay in California for a week or so for debriefing then return to Virginia for good.

Sometime next week I’ll be posting about the reunion …. stay tuned…

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