Friday, June 29, 2012


To paraphrase Aibileen: I is tired.  I is sore.  I is ready for the weekend!

I got up again just before 5:00 Thursday morning to cover about 3.5 miles before work.  I gotta say, I think you morning people are just plain nuts.  There is NOTHING enjoyable about being up before the sun.

Unlike Tuesday, though, I didn’t go straight home after work.  Instead, I went to the Y for my normal Thursday-night muscle conditioning class.  I think I could keep up with that schedule so we’ll see what the next few weeks bring.

I gave into both my inner devil and angel Thursday night.  I baked up some yummy bars and made a big salad for my lunch today.


So besides trying not to melt this weekend, I have dinner with friends tonight, a 10-mile training run tomorrow morning followed by some laying out, then I wrap up the weekend with brunch and a Magic Mike matinee with the girls.

And did I mention there will be champagne cupcakes?

(PS – Is it wrong that I’m actually kinda excited to see if we get the high temps that are being predicted?)

Thursday, June 28, 2012


Remember that Sea Salt Caramel Gelato I told you about a little while ago?  Well, Harris Teeter has the Talenti Gelato pints on a BOGO sale this week.  Which means you SHOULD go ahead and buy two, but if I haven’t quite convinced you of how wonderful the stuff is, at least you can pick up one at half-price.

But don’t complain to me when you end up BACK at Harris Teeter before the sale ends to officially take advantage of the BOGO deal so that by Tuesday when the sale’s over, you’ve ended up buying at least three pints of this delicious frozen treat.

I myself plan to get one of the other flavors that’s not quite so bad for me in addition to the Sea Salt Caramel.  There’s just no way I can resist getting a little more of that scrumptious stuff, but I don’t want to feel too guilty for eating TWO fully loaded pints of gelato.

By the way, have you seen the forecast for the next week in the Raleigh area?  Yikes!

Definitely gelato weather.  You gotta do what you gotta do to stay cool and if that means eating gelato by the pint, I say go for it!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Recipe Recap: Blueberry Muffin Bread French Toast

It’s been a while since I shared any food with you guys.  Not because I haven’t been cooking and baking, because I have.  I just haven’t posted about it.

I had high hopes for this Blueberry Muffin Bread.  Blueberry muffins without the extra effort to portion the batter out among the wells?  Sign me up!


When it comes to quick breads, my success rate is 50-50.  This one, unfortunately, didn’t tip the scales in my favor.  I normally have a problem with my breads being underbaked but this one was the complete opposite.  It was dry and crumbly for the most part, but with a little core of underbaked bread through the middle just to keep me on my toes.


I hated to think that this whole loaf of bread was going to end up getting thrown away so I decided I’d try to salvage it by turning it into French toast.

I found this recipe for a not-bad-for-us egg coating.  Since I’d never made French toast before, I perused a bunch of recipes on Allrecipes to get a feel for how to make this breakfast staple.  I decided to use this wafflemaker method.


I sliced my bread and coated both sides in my Egg Beater-milk-spice mixture.


Into the wafflemaker for a few minutes and voila!


I measured out a quarter-cup of sugar-free syrup and used every.last.drop on my French toast.



Nope, I didn’t like this at all.


If you have a waffle iron – or three like me – try making Waffled French Toast, especially if you’re like me and prefer your French toast to have some crispiness on the outside.


I’m really glad that this worked out for my dinner.  I was up just before 5:00 Tuesday morning so I could get in a 30-minute (actually 32:30 but who’s counting) run as part of my marathon training, which meant I didn’t have to go to the Y after work and could actually go home like a normal person.  I really don’t enjoy getting up early, but it sure is nice to have an entire evening at home.

I may have to accidentally overbake my next loaf of banana bread and see how that tastes as French toast…


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Michigan: Dansville and Downtown Detroit

On Wednesday, our fourth full day in MI, the McHusband and I headed about an hour west to Dansville where my grandparents, a.k.a. Papa and Grandma Grace, live.

We visited on the back porch where we were joined by Miss Kitty.



The McHusband and I took a quick trip around the pond and through the woods on the golf cart.

This is looking back up at the house.


Guess what?  These self-portraits aren’t so easy when you’re bumping over tree roots with your faster-is-better driver of a husband next to you.


Ah, that’s better.


The four of us went to dinner to dinner before the McHusband and I headed back to Kevin and Jenny’s.


I’m so glad we were close enough to spend an afternoon with Papa and Grandma Grace.  We had such a nice afternoon visiting, snacking on Grandma Grace’s rhubarb pie, looking through Papa’s original artwork, and facilitating a peace treaty between Grandma Grace’s computer and digital camera.


Thursday was our last full day in MI and the McHusband wanted to go into Detroit.  We loaded the kids into the van, ran some errands, then hit the mean streets of the Motor City.

Our tour started with us going vertical as our first stop was the top of our parking deck so we could take in the city from above.


Next up was this big courtyard where Jenny said they have festivals and, you know, stuff like that.


And look – it’s Canada!


You know kids, they’ll make a playground out of anything.  I have a feeling we could’ve been here for a good hour or so.




But the adults’ tummies had other ideas.  We got the rest of our tour of downtown as we walked to a restaurant for lunch.  All that strollin’ took a toll on Leah on the way home.  Sure, one afternoon in downtown Detroit and she’s out like a light but all day at Greenfield Village and she didn’t so much as do a head-bob on the way home.


So there you have it, that was our trip to Michigan in three or four nutshells.  We had a wonderful time visiting with everyone, and we really appreciate Kevin and Jenny’s generosity while we were there.  How’s this for hospitality: Kevin and Jenny gave up their room, bed and all, so we would be more comfortable while we were there. 

Yeah, they’re pretty awesome. Smile

Monday, June 25, 2012

“Seens” from Saturday

Saturday found The McHusband and me up bright and early.  He for boot camp and me for a 7.5-mile run through Heather’s neighborhood.  (Oh yeah, have I mentioned that I’m signed up to run a marathon in November?  Time to train!)

The upside of getting the weekend kicked off so early was having lots of time for doing both what I wanted to do and what I needed to do.

I wanted to lay out.  The weather wasn’t looking very promising for most of the morning but by noon the clouds cleared up and the sun shone hot and strong.  Thank goodness for my fan.


The cats (yes, they live in the backyard now) were hanging out with me, but they were more interested in the shade.




The kitties and I kept each other company for a couple of hours then I had to head inside for some of those things I needed to do – mostly sweeping and mopping the kitchen.  Sorry, no pictures of that exciting chore.

Another fun day Monday.  Hope your week’s off to a decent start!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Michigan Trip: Part III/Day 3

I need to get back to recapping this trip before I forget what we did and where we went.

Our third day is easy to remember though.  We spent most of the day at Greenfield Village, which is part of the larger The Henry Ford history attraction.

The McHusband and Leah led the way.  Everyone say, “Awwww.”


Our first order of business was riding the train around to the other side of the park.


The McHusband made sure he took pictures of the important sights along the train’s route.


After our train ride, we wandered through the Roundhouse where the train is actually worked on even today.



We walked under a train and saw a guy seemingly doing some mechanical work.  We’re pretty sure it wasn’t just for show anyway.



We went from trains to Model T’s and took a ride through the park in the old car before having a picnic lunch and taking a ride on the carousel.




All that riding worked up our appetites for dessert so it was custard time!  Chase decided he wanted cotton candy instead so he and I went over to a bench while the others handled the custard.


From the Village we headed over to the museum.


There was lots of neat stuff to see in there, including this carseat exhibit.


And the kids loved working on the car that was in the shop.



I didn’t say WHICH kids…


From the train to the Model T to the play car and back to the (model) train.  We were looking at this huge display that had no fewer than 4 model trains running on it and the guy manning the area offered to take our picture but he said it had to candid – no posing for the camera.  We agreed.  Well, most of us did.


You know me, I never met a rule I didn’t like. Hah!

A little more playtime for the kids and then it was time to go.


Yes, again, ALL the kids were playing…


As we headed home, the McHusband made sure we didn’t miss a couple last photo ops.

The old building…


And the spiffy new one.


We were driving home during Leah’s normal naptime, but that didn’t slow her down one bit.  Chase, on the other hand, was more than ready for some of his usual quiet time.


That catnap was all Chase needed and we were good to go for some sandbox and truck time when we got home.



And you know, it had been almost four whole days since I got my bake on so after some not-so-subtle hinting from everyone, I whipped up a half-batch of those Snickerdoodle Blondies.


Everyone but me had theirs still warm from the oven with some ice cream.  I’m kinda weird and don’t really like the whole cake-and-ice-cream combo (although I love an ice cream cake) so I had a big bowl of just ice cream.

Look, McHusband, isn’t it nice to see the evidence in someone else’s sink?


Whew, looking back, we crammed a lot into our third day in Michigan.  Thankfully the next day was a little more lowkey.