Sunday, 28 October 2007

Chocolate Griddle Cakes

I tore this recipe out a Gourmet magazine a couple years ago, and it's become a favorite. As you can tell by the smiling faces. It is delicious!! Although, like most delicious things, probably not that healthy. Oh well. It's breakfast, so it can't be that bad, right???

Chocolate Griddle Cakes With Chocolate Sauce

For Sauce:

1 c heavy cream

7 oz bittersweet chocolate

For Griddle Cakes:

1/2 c cocoa powder

1 1/4 c flour

1 c sugar

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/8 tsp salt

2 whole eggs

1 large egg yolk

3/4 c buttermilk

1/4 c oil

1 tsp vanilla

Make sauce: Bring cream to boil and then pour hot cream over chocolate, gently whisking until smooth.

Make griddle cakes: Sift together dry ingredients, then add wet ingredients. (Cooks well on a temperature controlled griddle at 300 degrees)

Delicious!!!!! Not so nutritious. Definitely does not taste like chicken!


This is what happens when you let your children play with other people's cameras. Your picture ends up on said people's blogs. Hee. Hee. (I think it was Ana taking most of the pictures actually.) Chloe and Elena--best friends!!!
One time when I took Elena out of Relief Society because she was being noisy, Chloe then proceeded to yell, "Lena! Lena! Lena! Lena!......." Poor Jenny, but not anymore--now Chloe's in nursery. Although when I walked past the nursery the other day, Chloe called out, "Hi Lena!"

William- he has the cutest accent, some odd mixture of British (from Jenny), French (from his Dad), and American (from living here).
Chloe is also similar to my daughters in the fact that she could technically have three nationalities, (British, French, American). Ana and Elena could both be Colombian, Canadian, or American, depending on what paperwork we decide to do. Jenny and William

This is my good friend Jenny and she was kindly watching my children for me while I picked up Leo from the airport. Besides her many and varied good qualities, (good cook, fun, good sense of humor, excellant taste in clothes, kind, etc. etc.) she has a perfectly brillant English accent. I love accents. That's the real reason I married Leo, his muy rico accent. Sigh. ;)

What a cute grin, love it!!!

Gary, Indiana, Gary, Indiana, Indiana, Gary (la, la, la)

Yes, I put my daughter in a pumpkin, but only cause Kayli did (I guess I give into peer pressure). It was so funny, cause Elena kept lifting her legs so I couldn't set her down inside it. Hee. Hee.

This past week is another of those weeks I've been having lately. This is how it went, Elena puking over everything, (mostly me--once completely drenching me at 5 AM), and doing loads of puked on laundry, scrubbing out vomit of the carpet, giving Elena baths because she had vomited all over herself and then turning around and running a fresh bath because she had gone diarrhea in the tub, force feeding Elena tylenol for her fever, and doing loads more of diarrhea covered laundry and... well you get the idea. It wasn't that fun. That is one good thing about my years as a nurse. It doesn't really bother me that much. On top of all that I was trying to get all this adoption nonsense taken care of. Leo and I had to have physicals done along with TB shots and fingerprinting for FBI clearances and Elena had her year checkup and recieved her shots which made her all the happier. We also had to list all our siblings, living and deceased, all our places of residence in the last five years (which is a lot), all this information on Ana's biological mother, etc. etc. Stacks of paperwork were killing me in between Elena's screams for attention. Anyway, it all ended on a good note. We went to Indiana. Well, Leo went to work. Ana, Elena and I went to Indiana. But not Gary, Indiana. I just like the song. Although I only remember the Gary, Indiana refrain. We went to Layfayette to visit my sister Kayli and her family. It was lots of fun, despite our kids (hers too) still being sickly and me catching a cold as well. We went to a pumpkin patch with a petting barn, and then carved pumpkins. Brett wins the creative prize, he carved a skeleton riding a dirt bike with flames coming out the back. You'll have to watch Mi Hermana's blog for pictures of that. Good times.

Kayli somehow thought 500 W was "close enough" to 600 E so we ended up in the boon docks in Indiana. She yelled at me that I better not post this picture of us in the middle nowhere on my blog. Hee. Hee.

Ana, Elena, Ethne, Jethro and Hazel

Ana feeding the calf, Elena screamed when the calf got close to her.Riding on the train.Feeding the llama.Elena did smile once during the whole was actually when she was being pulled around in the wagonThis is Kayli saying "You'd better not post that!"Ana did hers all by herself--she has the slimey hands to prove it!Ana's jack-o-lantern!!! Awesome!!

Sunday, 21 October 2007

The Best Thing About Hats

Last Wednesday was hat day at Ana's school. So Tuesday night I got down all my hats for her. And we tried them all on, which IS the best thing about hats. But Ana decided to wear a "normal" hat as she put it, and wore my Utah State University baseball cap instead of all the other amazingly cool hats I have. Sigh. It was fun though.

Happy Birthday Elena!

Today Elena is one year old!! Happy Birthday!!!! Unfortunately however, she's being running a fever off and on for the last two days and threw up twice this morning. So I didn't take her to church and she's taking a nap right now. Ana went to church with a friend of mine that lives down the street from us. I really didn't think it would be best to keep her home all day. She was already mad at me for doing her hair, and I didn't even use the bow I wanted to put in!! Sigh. I guess bows will have to wait till Elena grows some hair. Sigh. And then Ana wouldn't eat anything for lunch that I offered so I told her that she'd just have to go to church without eating anything (she wanted to take a bag of cheetos to church and I told her no). Life is certainly more confrontational with an older child. I used to think I'd never let my kids play computer games, watch tv etc. on Sunday, but church is at 1:30 and that's a long, long morning and I really couldn't think of anything else for Ana to do, so she watched a movie and played on the computer. Sigh again. I was busy cleaning up vomit in my defense though. Anyway, moving on to the more interesting things that have been going on these last few days.....

We flew to Arizona on Thursday because Leo's parents were sealed in the temple on Friday (and Leo to them). It was really great!!! I was Martha's escort which was kind of funny because I sat in the "mother's chair" in the sealing room. Hee. Hee. They had it in Spanish, but I'm fairly used to that and all was good, except they had to seal Leo to his parents twice because he didn't give them his full name the first time. Sigh.
Then in the afternoon, Martha had a birthday party for Elena. In all honesty I think big birthday parties for young kids is kind of a waste because they won't remember a thing, but I let Martha do whatever she wanted to. Martha planned the party for Saturday but since Leo had to be to work on Sunday we left Saturday to come home, so Martha had to move the party to Friday evening. She was upset because the Primary trick-or-treat was that night and unbeknownst to me, she had invited the entire primary. Yeah. She definitely goes all out. She made two pinatas, two dresses for Elena to wear, and bought three cakes (She asked me to pick one of those decorated ones from the store, but I think they taste awful so I picked angel food cakes with strawberries and whip cream instead. YUM! Also nice because I could give chunks of cake to Elena without her getting all messy.) Only eight kids came, which I think is for the best, 30-40 kids (what Martha wanted) would have been chaos. Poor Martha, it wasn't what she wanted at all. Really, the very best gift she could possibly give Elena, she already had that day--when she, Orlando and Leo were sealed in the temple. I know that sounds sappy, but hey, it's the truth. Here's Sebastian and Elena--he's so big! Below is them in March.
I was pretty jetlagged the whole time I was there. It really is very tiring to fly across country especially when you have to get up for flights at 4 AM.

Tuesday, 16 October 2007


I LOVE this show. Okay, due to it's high amount of sexual content--- I'll rephrase that. I really enjoy watching Scrubs while being quick to turn the channel. Hee. Hee. Now you all know another weakness of mine. But really I hate all other medical shows, I avoid them like the plague. The Discovery Health channel leaches the life force right out of my body. I swear, it's true. But Scrubs does a good job of showing some sad with the mostly cynical and a whole lot of absurdity to really really capture the essence of healthcare. Anyway here's some good clips for you all. Most of them are short--just a minute or less.

Drug Addict--Okay, this is pretty harsh, but generally sums up my whole feeling on nursing. Yeah. So that's why I'm retired. I hate patients like that. And yes, they exist--in numerous, numerous quantities. In fact, in Florida, everyone would know when the price of drugs on the street went up because we'd get a rush of our frequent flyers. Yes, I am a bitter, mean, nasty nurse. My other hated patients are the 700 lb (no exaggeration there folks) 30-40 year old patients who are of course diabetic and have oozy, disgusting diabetic ulcers all over their legs and feet and who eat icecream and chocolate ALL day and complain if you don't bring it immediately or when they eat the floors entire supply and complain when you don't have time to call the kitchen to bring more up and they want you to wipe their backsides for them because they can't reach. Okay, wow, sorry for the tirade.
Dominican -- I added this for Derek-- she's Dominican, It's from their all musical episode.
Hugh Jackman --- I tend to agree with J. D. on this one.
J.D. plundering---I kind of feel sad that all Leo can get is pretzels and peanuts since we're kind of in the same boat.
Classic Turk and J.D. and another one, Bugles
And some more musical ones too:
And you have to have a falls montage.

Well, enough of that. Yes, I have a lame sense of humor. Nursing twists and warps your brain. Stay away from hospitals. Leo really ought never to know what I do with my time when he's away. Sigh.

Louie Louie

My Dad called me up when he heard we were adopting Ana, and said when we legally adopt her, we should change her name to Cinderella. Hee. Hee.

And for your edification:

The famous 'Louie Louie' by the Kingsmen caused a major rumpus on its release in 1963 because of the supposedly obscene lyrics. In fact, the song is a harmless song sung by a sailor about his girlfriend, named Louie. Because the lyrics are so garbled, caused by a combination of primitive recording, bad microphone placement, a singer with braces on his teeth, and with a strained voice, the words are unintelligable. However, with the zeal that follows all folk myths, somone started the myth that the lyrics were obscene. This resulted in three tangible results, in ascending order of stupidity - someone actually wrote a set of obscene lyrics which were sung at frat. parties nationwide, the governor of Indiana banned local stations from playing the song, while admitting he didn't know what the words were, and the FBI conducted a two-and-a-half year long investigation, playing the song at all speeds, and interviewing everyone concerned, before giving up! The song is now the second most recorded pop song after 'Yesterday'. So here are the real lyrics, atleast according to one person.

My Dad called again later and said he had this 16 year old hanging around who ate a lot and was kind of annoying, so would I please take him. He said he'd send twenty bucks with him on the plane for my troubles. Sigh. I quickily refused the offer to adopt my younger brother, Ethan. So funny, Dad. Ha. Ha (That was a sarcastic laugh.)

This is Ethan, a couple of years ago. And below is why I do NOT want a teenage boy--I got this picture from Ethan.

Tuesday, 9 October 2007

Bits and Pieces

Harry Potter

This is an assortment of random videos and pictures for you. Above is a great video for Potter fans and a picture of my daughter who thinks she can walk, albeit not that well as you can see from the large bruise on her cheek.

Leo playing with the kids, it's SOOO wonderful when he is home!! What a terrific husband I have. Funny Leo Story: On Saturday, Leo went to the Priesthood session of conference with his good friend, Thomas. I stayed with his wife Jenny at their house and found out Thomas takes jujutsu. Well, I told this to Leo as soon as they got back because I knew Leo would be so excited. He's been talking about taking some kind of martial art since before we were married and jujutsu was one of the kinds he wanted to try (lately all he's talked about is krav-maga). Anyway, so here's these two guys in their ties, white shirts and dress pants, excited as could be doing jujutsu moves in the family room. Men really are just boys at heart, eh? I love it though. Another thing I love:

Muppets--I love Animal!! Here's Ana and Elena with their cousins in Arizona. So cute!

Last night we had FHE with a whole bunch of other families in the ward. We played sand volleyball, had potluck hamburgers, and let the dozen or so kids run around on the playground (two year olds do pose a serious hazard on a volleyball court and also make for interesting gymnastic moves). It was so much fun!!! Definitely have to do it again sometime.
Ana just before general conference on Sunday. (Aren't I a great shopper--bought the dress on Ebay--I love it!)
Ana and Elena in Arizona. And here's some music I like:
Band of HorsesI tried to put Ana's hair in rollers so it would be curly--it didn't work at all. It didn't have even a slight curl to it in the morning. Any suggestions? And more good music (you should watch this one just for the video--it's fantastic):
Pink Bullets

Elena eating spaghetti. She liked it a lot! And for your random fact for the evening: Bosnian is written in Latin script, but it can also be seen written in the Cyrillic alphabet.

Thursday, 4 October 2007

Forgotten Things

A long time ago, in a galaxy back when I had only one child, I was going to post this, but then I was distracted... so here's my forgotten cooking from last month.

First off, thank you Linda many times over for your delicious English Muffin recipe, I made them again last month for Leo and he absolutely loves them. So good!
I also made Butterhorns, a recipe from my Aunt LaVerle, which is also delicious. Whenever I eat Butterhorns, I think of Aunt LaVerle's house--gorgeous flower garden, tasty vegetable garden, sleeping on the wrap around veranda, swimming at the local pool, watching shooting stars at night, playing endlessly that tank game on the computer with Devonee, Brian, and Kayli, walking to the only store in town to buy fried mushrooms and penny candies, reading many of the great fantasy novels they have, watching Cat Balou, eating rhubarb dunked in sugar, and of course, watching Kayli and Brian puke up raw eggs that they dared each other to eat and the ten dollars worth of Canadian candy I hid in Devonee's room, forgot, and then Devonee and Brian ate (rudies!). Good times. Anyway, here's the practically perfect recipe. I half it at least when I make it. Once when I was in high school, I made the unfortunate mistake to double it--we gave pans and pans of them away.
3 c warm water
2 tsp sugar
4 TBLS yeast
Mix these together, then add
1 Qt. milk
4 eggs
1/2 lb. butter
1/2 c sugar
2 tsp salt
1/2 c mashed potatoes
approx. 13 c flour
Mix wet ingredients and then add dry. Instant potatoes can be used. The dough should be really sticky. Let raise 1 hour then roll out, spread with butter, sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar, roll it up and then cut in slices. Let raise 1 hour more and bake at 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes.
For the icing:
4 cups icing sugar (powdered sugar for you Americans)
1/2 c butter
1 tsp vanilla
dash of salt
3-4 TBLS milk/cream
Spread on while rolls are hot. Yum!!! (I usually use this amount on half the recipe above, so I'd double this if using the full recipe.)

My other delicious recipe I made this past month was Moroccan Garbanzo and Lentil Soup. Leo and I both loved it. Definitely going on my list to make again, and again. I actually for once stuck pretty close to the recipe (coincidence in it being so good? Hmmm...) but I didn't have saffron threads, but it tasted fine anyway.

Moroccan Lentil and Garbanzo Soup

2 cups drained, canned garbanzos
1 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground ginger (I used fresh, coarsly grated ginger)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 c margarine
3/4 c chopped celery
2 medium yellow onions, chopped
1 c chopped leaves and stems of fresh cilantro
a pinch of Saffron threads, pulverized
1 large can Italian plum tomatoes, seeded, and chopped (I used two cans of diced tomatoes) Juice from canned tomatoes
2 tsp salt
3/4 cup lentils (I added more)
2 qts. water
1/2 lemon

Melt the margarine in a large pot, then cook the spices, celery, and chopped onions over medium heat for 5 minutes--do not brown. Add the cilantro and tomatoes with juice and cook for another 15 minutes. Add the water, lentils, garbanzos, and salt. Bring to a boil and simmer, partially covered for about 2 hours (or until garbanzos are cooked). Just before serving, stir in the lemon juice and garnish with reserved cilantro sprigs and lemon slices. (I made it in a crockpot, although I did cook the onions, etc. as directed, as you can see the picture below.)

Elena loved it too, or at least the garbanzo beans. So, soo, sooooo good!