Saturday, January 19, 2008

Snow!! Scones, and some thumbs-ups for your enjoyment

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Snow!! Scones, and some thumbs-ups for your enjoyment
Current mood: cheerful

SNOW!!! Sustained, steady, big-fluffy-flaked snow! I feel like a kid every time I glance out the window. It makes me want to do a little happy jig right there, whether I'm pouring my coffee or changing a diaper. If I've been doing something else for awhile, and forgotten to look outside, I grin like an idiot when I spot the snow still swirling steadily down. Hooray, snow!

On the one hand, I'm missing an opportunity to appreciate this delight with Littleman and Sweetcheeks. I can count on one hand the number of times it's snowed in Littleman's experience, and only once has he been able to play in it- last year, when we had to travel to Beech Mtn NC just to find enough snow to slide around in. Since the boys are spending the weekend with their Auntie and Grandma and Grandpa, I'm missing the delight of their experience with it. But on the other hand, I am in a cozy mood today, happy to appreciate the snow's beauty through insulated windows. Lately I have not been feeling adventurous about outdoor adventures in all weather- which is a bit out of character for me, so perhaps it's something instinctual related to having a new infant. Anyhow, instead of mucking about in cold wet frostiness, I slept late, read emails, made coffee and baked scones, all while delighting in the fluffy crystalline magic that continues to grace my view of outside.

Mmmm, scones. I haven't made these in a long while, though they are a favorite of mine. This recipe is from a cookbook, but I copied it ages and ages ago, so I don't know who to give credit to. They are quite simple, and I love them:

Raisin Scones

2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
3 tsp baking powder
2 Tbs sugar
1/4 cup cold butter
1/2 cup raisins (or dried berries), soaked in hot water for 1/2 hour
1/2 cup half & half or cream
1 egg, beaten

- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- Sift dry ingredients together. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender.
- Add the drained raisins to the flour mixture.
- Mix the half & half with the beaten egg and stir into the flour mixture. Use a fork, and do not overmix. It should just take a few turns.
- Divide the dough into three balls, and pat each out into a 1/2 inch thick circle.
- Cut each circle into 4 triangular scones, and place on an ungreased cookie sheet.
- Bake until golden brown, approximately 12 minutes.
Serve with butter and jam.

(note: I don't have any cream right now, so I substituted a mixture of 2% milk and plain yogurt. It worked just fine).
This used to be my signature New Year's Day breakfast, paired with mimosas and good coffee. I've never been much of a drinker, so I was happy to get up earlier than the other revelers and help them face down their hangovers. Then, we'd all go hiking. Ah, the good old days! :)

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SO- how many thumbs-ups do I need to catch up? LOL!

First of all, I wanted to share this artist's website- check out her lovely photography:

Next, if you need to be taken down a notch, go here for some excellent insulting:
(Thou lumpish, hell-hated whey face!)

Here, cool Dads (and Moms, Grandfolks, Aunties, Uncles. . .) can find a variety of helpful resources on everything from frisbees to slot cars, hand shadows to skateboarding, juggling and model trains to hand shadows and ventriloquism:

Finally, a thumbs-up goes to Born Free baby bottles. (They also make sippy cups, which I plan on getting later). They are made of plastic that is free of bisphenol A, which is a potentially harmful chemical found in all sorts of plastic goods. The alleged danger is controversial, but I've decided to try and reduce my family's exposure to bisphenal A, so I picked up some Born Free bottles for Babyman's occasional bottle of pumped breastmilk. There are more parts than our previous bottles had, because the Born Free bottles have a special valve. The valve works GREAT- much less leaking and burping with these bottles than with any other bottles I've tried. I'd especially recommend them for babies who use bottles frequently. note: Glass bottles are also free of bisphenol A (and all other unknown plastic substances that might be harmful), but glass is not recommended for breastmilk, only for formula.

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I am going to get some work done. Maybe I'll be back later!

The snow has stopped. Sigh. It was lovely while it lasted!

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