Friday, October 22, 2010

Cinnamon Pretzels

 Van, Activity Days 055I checked out a children’s cookbook called Honest Pretzels a couple of months ago.  I am always trying to get the kids to spend more time creating in the kitchen.  We decided to try out the pretzel recipe because I figured if a kid can do it (remember the cookbook is designed for the young chef), I can do it.  So here is our first go-round of pretzel-making:

Van, Activity Days 064  Djeryd was on a quest to make the longest possible pretzel which just wound up losing its shape in the water bath, but it was fun.

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The water bath was much less intimidating than I expected.  The whole process was really fun and the kids loved making their own pretzels.

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After they came out of the oven we dipped them in melted butter and then a cinnamon-sugar mix.  Really, really yummy.  And ridiculously satisfying because a.) nothing beats super fresh baked goods, and b.) we made them with our own ten hands in the happy glow of our own home.  Anna keeps asking for another round – perhaps next week . . . De-lish!

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Last Picnic

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We had a small spell of summery weather a couple of weeks ago.  To take advantage of it we headed over to a park for a Family Night picnic.

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The kids played until it was almost dark and then we walked over to our favorite library and whiled away the rest of the evening.

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This is my favorite picture because I think it captures our life right now – bags and strollers and half-finished juice boxes, coolers and lunch boxes and blankets, my baby  growing and stretching and reaching, all the kids running off on new adventures with me holding up my babe and holding down the fort.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

HELP – Pass It On: One Million Pillowcases

In August my sister directed me to this website.  It is a quilting magazine that is encouraging the production and donation of one million pillowcases for those in need.  Since I am always looking for crafty service projects, I jumped right on this one.  Unfortunately I did not get around to involving my kids in this one.  I got them all started with my Activity Day girls (all five of them LOVED the sewing) and then finished the pillowcases up at home and sent them on to the Department of Human Services to be given to foster kids in our area.  It was really fun and really easy and pretty quick. 

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They have an instructional video at the bottom of the web page that explains how to do this very cool roll-it-up method that encloses the seam along the band.  I did french seams on the sides so there were no exposed seams at all (instructions are on the website).

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It’s pretty important to line up the fabric edges well so that you don’t have to do a lot of extra trimming when you finish the french seams.

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Pressing at each and every stage is also key.  I got all eight pillowcases to the same stage and then whipped through each step with the whole stack before moving on to the next step.  It made it easier on my brain since I did not have to constantly refigure out where I was in the process.

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They fit a standard pillow.  It was a great project and so much fun that I am dreaming up reasons to make as many as I can for Christmas presents.

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