May 31, 2009

Attack of the Penguin

This week I was attempting to get some new things into my shops when I came across this:

I don't seem to recall making this Gadget Penguin with his eye bulging out. hmmmm? I wonder what's been going on here?

Oh, right. I see now. A certain ginger cat has adopted this penguin as his own. Thanks a lot Jody. Pick on someone your own size next time....or maybe someone who doesn't take quite so long to make. Nano Penguins are much smaller, Jody!!!

May 23, 2009

Two Spoonfuls: The Egg Foam Method

We're back! I've pretty much unpacked what I can in my new kitchen so it's time to get back to cooking. This week I'm back with Alton, tackling the Egg Foam Method. I won't try to explain this one to you because I just don't understand it, too much scientific mumo-jumbo for me. It's all about bubbles, that much I know.

This section of I'm Just Her for More Food is full of recipes for things we wouldn't eat in my house, so I decided to go with the Spiced Angel Food Cake. (Nick doesn't really care for Angel Food Cake, but I knew he'd eat it if there was any cake around).

I should have taken more notice of the bad mojo when I first decided to go with this recipe. First of all, I couldn't find my angel food cake pan. Once I did, I discovered it was kind of gross and needed to be replaced. I got this new one for 50% off at Michael's. It's all clean & new. Check!

I read through my ingredients list to make sure I had what I needed. Check! Then I went to make the cake and found that I didn't have what I needed after to the store and get Cream of Tartar...and more eggs (you need 12!). Check!

Once I got started with the process, I then discovered that I'd donated the wrong whisk attachments for the hand mixer I to the store for new hand mixer. (Alton says to beat the egg whites with a hand mixer so you don't miss anything at the bottom of the bowl). Check!

Next, I whipped my eggs to a foam, added my cream of tartar and then whipped the heck out of those eggs till I got "medium" peaks. I added the sugar...the cake flour & spices...folded it in. Check!

Next I poured my batter into the pan to bake. Here's where it went really wrong. Batter goes in, batter comes out. I had the lovliest pool of goo on my counter at this point. Obviously I didn't whip the eggs enough, or I bought a bad pan, or I'm just not capable of baking an agel food cake from scratch (this is the likely answer).

Here's where the whole thing went into the sink and down the drain. What a comedy of errors this cake was. Why didn't I read the signs and just make something else?!?!

Thank goodness for the grocery store taste test cake that I had in the fridge. At least we didn't have to go without cake after this DISASTER!


Help for next time:
Baking 911 - Tips for baking an Angel Food Cake
The Prepared Pantry - How to Bake an Angel Food Cake from a Recipe
Recipe - Espresso Chocolate-Chip Angel Food Cake

maybe next time

I guarantee Jenn had better luck than I did, let's go see.

May 20, 2009

Waiting for the Cable Guy

Today we're getting TV, but I'm not really excited about it. We don't watch a lot of TV and we HATE cable. Unfortunately, when your house is surrounded by really tall tress, satellite isn't an option. sigh So, today I'm waiting for the cable guy. Expecting someone always throws off my schedule, I have lots of hallway trim to paint today. Anyway, while I wait, I thought I'd pop in and share a few more pictures from the new house and surrounding areas....

We were happy to learn that there is a little farmer's market at the shopping center by our house. We picked up this gorgeous bouquet for Jenn last weekend. (She makes a mean brunch.)

This weekend we headed over to Bainbridge Island for a barbecue. We love it over there, it's so much like Nova Scotia, and the weather was absolutely gorgeous!

I found my local quilt shop last week too, that's a relief. It's in a really cute little country village full of shops & cafe's and it's only about 10 minutes away. Perfect.

Nick put up my curtains in the sewing room, they really soften up that ugly aluminum window.

Yesterday I got this cute little pot of silk flowers for my window. I added the fabric trim this morning, the pot was just too white. Pretty cute, no?

Now I must get to work. No more fun stuff for me.

May 15, 2009

Still Here and Working On It

Hi, it's me again. I'm still digging through the mountain of boxes, but I had to stop in and say hello. I'll just share some quick piccies of what's going on here at the "Chocolate Box" (this house is soooooo brown).

I was very happy to find out that the tree outside my kitchen window is a Japanese Maple. Just what I wanted! Here's a view from the driveway.

It's not as grey and horrible in Seattle as people say it is. My house is generally very dark though - it faces East. This weird little built-in barbecue table in my kitchen enjoys the sunniest spot in the house. I think this area will be even sunnier when the table is removed along with the wood stove.

I painted most of the living room the other day. If you look above the window on the right you can see how much contrast there is from the new paint to the old. oops! The wall by the fireplace will be slightly bolder, I swear. I'm just happy to have all those books unpacked!

I did say I painted "most" of the living room. Ladders and I don't get along. That ceiling gets a little high. I need a tall, dark & handsome Englishman to help me complete the job. Hmm, Where can I get one of those?

I've got myself a little office space across the hall from my sewing room. One or both of my kitties is loving the bed in there when I'm at the computer. This will double as the guest room until I find time to paint and re-floor the bedroom downstairs.

My first sewing project in the new house - Sewing Room Curtains! They aren't hung yet, but at least they're made.

Back to work now, I'm making 3 Coupon Organizers for my shop. Don't worry, there's still lots of painting to do, I won't sew too much. :)

May 10, 2009

Movin' In

Wow, I can't believe I haven't done one blog post about the big move to Seattle. Sorry about that. I've been on my laptop since we got here...the cable for my camera has been missing...and we've been really busy. Now for the update. I'll be brief, it's my bed time.

We've been in the new house for just over a week now & so far we're loving it here. The house is a mess and still in a state of total chaos. I finally unpacked the last kitchen box yesterday, so that's helping my sanity. I have yet to cook a meal here.

Jody loves all the big windows and the views. He and Maple were very well behaved in the car on the way up here. Good kitties.

Maple has had little trouble finding a comfy place to sleep. If she had her way, the boxes would stay.

I've been very busy painting and unpacking. I'll be sure to post some pictures when I've got something to show you. Nothing's finished yet, so you'll have to wait.

Hope everyone had a great Mother's Day! Oh yeah, and I need to do a shameless plug for my shops. I officially re-opened this evening. If you've been dying for a monkey or a tote or something, I'm back in business at iSew and Monkey Travel Club. Guess I better find the post office.