Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Pumpkin Muffins

My husband and I somehow managed to breed two little boys who are big breakfast eaters.  When I was a kid, eating breakfast meant I would be barfing on the bus (very susceptible to car sickness) and over the years, I guess my body got used to not eating first thing in the morning.
My daughter is the same way.
My husband doesn't eat breakfast either.  I'm not sure about the childhood trauma that explains his morning time eating issues, but I'm sure they're there.
So, for a loooong time, I didn't have to worry about what to fix for breakfast.
Then along came the savages.
They are asking for at least five or six different things to eat before their feet even hit the ground in the morning so I've had to come up with some options.
The recipe I'm sharing now, is my little guy's favorite 'fuffin'.  There's a little extra work at the beginning, but what with the worlds obsession with pumpkin spice EVERYTHING, I figured you wouldn't mind as long as it was worth it, and trust me, it's worth it.

Pumpkin Muffins

16 oz. can pumpkin (unsweetened, not pie filling)
1 c. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ginger
1-1/3 c. all-purpose flour
2/3 c. whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
4 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla

Cook pumpkin, sugar, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg and ginger in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring constantly until thick and shiny (5-7 minutes).  Set aside.
Whisk flours, baking soda and baking powder together in a large bowl.
Add butter and vanilla to pumpkin mixture.  Stir a little of pumpkin mix into eggs to temper them so you don't end up with scrambled eggs, then add to pumpkin mixture.
Fold pumpkin mix into flour mix until just combined.  Batter will be very thick.
Divide batter into 12 muffin liners sprayed with nonstick spray and bake at 350 degrees for 19 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center of muffins comes out with just a few crumbs attached to it.
Let muffins cool on rack until they won't burn your face off.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Filthy Fridays

Friday's around here used to go under the name Fitness Friday.
Yeah.  That ship has sailed.
Now my exercise consists of running up and down the stairs with laundry baskets, keeping six acres of land weeded and mowed, and marathon writing sessions (You see what I did there?).  On top of all that, I'm kinda tired of moving all the crap laying all over my house around to make ya'll think I live in some semblance of a clean house.
I don't.
So I am starting a new Friday tradition.  Filthy Friday's.
I'm hoping it will make all you overworked, tired, frustrated parents who assume everyone's houses are meticulously kept and perfectly decorated, realize it's a lie.
Today's filth is brought to you by a month of moving, too many deadlines and too many kids.
And let's be honest.  I don't feel like tackling it.
That's my loft.  Believe it or not, it looks better than it did.  While we were waiting for the new carpet to go into the kids rooms it looked like a flop house.  Mattresses on the floor and empty snack bags everywhere they could stuff them.
Eventually, I have big plans for this space.  Just not today.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Plates a Plenty

A few years ago, the great people of Ikea chose our area to grace with their presence.  For about three years, my husband and I binge bought, filling our house with washable sofa's, expanding dining tables for our children to stab with forks and every paper covered floor lamp available.  Family friendly, affordable home goods in a fun shopping environment?  Best thing ever.
So far, I have not regretted a single purchase I've made from the business savvy Swedes.  Except one.  And even that one isn't their fault.
It's the Novogratz' fault.  (Is that how you make that name possessive?  I need to check my grammar book.  But not right now.  Maybe later.  Or not.  You might have to just deal with it.)
I'm not a dish set kind of girl.  Matching plates, cups and saucers in a lovely ivy design?  Not my thing, but we needed new plates and bowls desperately.  I think we were using my husband's stuff from when he moved out on his own in 1996 and took all the hand-me-down's he could get.  I'm also pretty sure we only had enough for like, four people.  Maybe five if one was okay with using a rogue salad plate.
I decided the only way to go was white.  Then I could buy anything that tickled my fancy, as long as it was white, and everything would coordinate without being matchy-matchy.  So, off we went to Ikea and bought dinner plates, salad plates and bowls for twelve people.  It was glorious and I loved the clean look of all white everything.  Life was good.
Then, I caught an episode featuring the Novogratz family on HGTV and it ruined everything.
In this particular episode, the family was at home getting ready for dinner.  One of the kids opened a drawer and pulled out their dinner plates.  I had instant buyers remorse.
Their dishes were different.  Each and every plate was a beautiful, unique design.  Nothing matched, yet somehow it worked perfectly.
I've thought about that show ever since and recently, decided I was being stupid.  I can find a new family for my white dishes.  Life is too short.
So last week, I started my collection. 

I found them all at the thrift store down the street and only paid $4 for all three.  It's going to take a while, but I think it's going to be a fun process.  I'll keep you posted!