I’m clearly blonde enough without highlights…

So, remember how I wasn’t going to walk at graduation?  Well, I may have accidentally picked up my cap and gown yesterday.  So you’re all invited to come 🙂

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In other news, let me tell you my blonde moment of the week.  Or maybe the month.

I went to Barnes and Noble to return a book.  I had the gift receipt.  I was set.  I handed it to the lady.  She took it and picked up the gift receipt.  She looked at the receipt.  Looked at me.  Looked back at the receipt.  Then said, “um, this is from Target.”

Huh.  Apparently you can buy books other places besides just book stores.  And this is why if you are literate you should take advantage of that and read.  It will save you from embarrassing moments later 🙂

Lessons in Cheesecake

Sometimes I have good ideas.  Sometimes I have ideas I think are good, but really are not.  Sometimes I have ideas, and there is no way to know if they are good or not.  I will let you be the judge of what happened below…

I decided that candy cane cheesecake would bs a definite necessity for Christmas Eve. My sister in law promised she would eat some, so I turned to the internet to find a recipes that looked promising.

Things went well as I began. It was so easy!  Perhaps it was TOO easy. The cheesecake appeared to be delicious as I pulled it out of the oven. But then every cheesscake baker’s nightmares began to come true. It was like an earthquake came through and left giant fissures, canyons,  ravines… right in the middle of my beautiful cheesecake.

Alas!  What is one to do?

I think the answer is fairly obvious.  You should not just sprinkle your crushed candy cane around the outside of the cake, but rather, spread it everywhere.  Specifically fill in those crevices so no one can even tell they are there.

Once again, all is well in the land of baking and cheesecake.  Or was until morning came and I discovered the cheesecake had eaten the candycanes… ravines are back, but now filled with candy cane goo.

To which my family responded… that sounds amazing

Oh, just spreading some joy?

Today’s Embarrassing Moment.

I was walking through my neighborhood with friends, looking at the Christmas lights.  We came across a house with crazy flashing lights everywhere and commented that it is kind of blinding – like a strobe light – like a dance party!  And we proceed to have a mini dance party in the driveway.  Then realized you could tune in on the radio and the lights are synchronized to a song.  Then we realized there were people parked in the street in front of the house watching the light show.  And apparently our dancing show.

Awesome.

Three Lauras, Pho, and an Elf

On Saturday I had a Christmas cookie baking day with some new fun friends!  There are several things that made this delightful.

#1 – Three of the four bakers were named Laura

Really that should be enough to convince you it was wondrous… but I guess I could share a few more tidbits of happiness.

#2 – They all seem to bake similarly to me: haphazardly.  It was brilliant.

Exhibit A) Let’s microwave the premade dough.

Exhibit B) Let’s crack an egg to mix it in – oh wait, the egg chosen was hardboiled.

Exhibit C) Let’s take cookies off the tray, set them out to cool, only to discover that they are not done, so let’s put them back on the tray and re-bake them.  (In our defense, it is really hard to tell when cookies are done if they are green?)

Exhibit D) Let’s drink incredible amounts of coffee and not eat any real food all day long.

Exhibit E) Some of us One of us had never heard of almond bark before.  And it turns out it is not made from the bark of almonds.

Exhibit F) “These will look so great after they bake!”  “Oh, these look worse after they are baked”

Exhibit G) Saran Wrap.  The devil’s invention that we wrestled with to cover the plates at the end.  It was a true test of our friendship.  After we got a good system down we tried to show off to the Lauras.  Fail.  Cookies started falling off the plates with every move we made.

Take that and add in a lot of ridiculous conversation, a common love to travel, attempting to use new nicknames to distinguish between Lauras, and you get a magical day of baking, a magical day that never ended.  Our baking went almost twice as long as it was meant to.  But it is ok, because we had way more than twice the fun.

Afterwards we went out for pho at a dodgy hole in the wall Vietnamese restaurant in Minneapolis.  It was absolutely delicious.  And yes, with our dinner we drank more coffee.  Vietnamese coffee is basically shots of espresso with sweet and condensed milk.  The glass was sitting in a bowl of hot water to keep the coffee warm.  It was basically like drinking warm coffee ice cream.

And afterwards, naturally went to church to watch Elf

and hung out with Buddy and Santa afterwards.

All in all I would give the day 2 thumbs up.  If I had more thumbs, I would put them up as well.

We should probably get boyfriends. Or at least a butler.

This weekend, my roommate and I had many an epic fail.  Specifically in the realm of opening containers.

  1. On Friday, she couldn’t get her massive jar of applesauce open.  After trying for a really long time, she asked me to try… preemptively letting me know she had loosened it.  She clearly did not loosen it enough, as it would not even start to budge.  We both tried several more times, but to no avail.  We used fabric to hold on, hoping that the texture change would improve our grip.  Nope.  We tried the awkward, “you hold the jar and I’ll twist the lid” approach.  Not helpful.  We tapped the lid on the table, we tapped the lid with a knife.  Eventually, after a long battle, we won.
  2. Tiff ordered a coffee bean canister.  It arrived in the mail on Friday.  She tried to open it.  I tried to open it.  I said, “it is too bad we don’t have man hands”.  She said, “I think we can consider ourselves blessed that we don’t have manhands”.  I had to agree.  It sat there mocking her for an extended period of time.  Then she buckled down with determination and made her canister opening dreams come true.  Her fingers paid the price for this determination.
  3. I am upstairs doing my Beth Moore homework.  She is downstairs making dinner for her small group, when she comes up, looking for help with the can opener.  After examining the can opening contraptions she has located in the drawer, I choose an opener that looks to be from the mid 17th century.  I’m fairly certain that my hands will be crippled for life after struggling for a considerable length of time to open all those cans.

Lesson learned: we really need some men around to help out with these things in life.

The Genetics of Mismeasurement

It is now September, and that means it is time to get my classroom ready for a new school year.  I have had the same bulletin boards for years (well, same fabric on them at least) so I decided that I was ready for some change.  I found an adorable vintage looking owl/apple print, and a turquoise and reddish color to accent it with.  I estimated on how much fabric to buy, then regretted not just measuring ahead of time when I saw my total bill for the day, then went to school the next day to measure the exact specifications of each piece of fabric.  I didn’t have a tape measure at work, but I thought “I will just use this 18 inch ruler!  Not a problem”.  OR big problem.

I set off to my amazing grandma’s house to have her help me cut the fabric to the right sides.  She graciously not only helped me, but sent me home with a miniature homemade peach pie.  DELICIOUS!

The next day, I excitedly went to school to hang up my beautiful new fabric.  I began stapling it up (no easy feat when you are singlehandedly stapling up fabric that is multiple yards long – this probably should have been on film for all your amusement).  As I got to the end of the piece, I was crushed to discover that my fabric was multiple feet short.  WHat?  Was an 18 inch ruler not the ideal measurement tool??  I pieced together the extra fabric I’d cut off, and now you can barely tell that I am a mismeasuring fool.  (photos to come)

But tune in tomorrow for the continuation of the classroom project saga, where we learn which parent I inherited my measuring skills from.  (love you dad!)

blonde+ice cream=disappointment

This past weekend, my roommate and I decided to invite some friends over for pizza, a movie, and homemade ice cream.  I was excited that one of my good friends from small group would be joining us, but then I realized that our menu for fun was not very non-dairy-friendly.  So I picked up some breadsticks and went with strawberry sorbet instead of ice cream.  I wasn’t really sure about all the steps involved, but I was wearing a super cute apron, so I figured all would be well.  I servcd my friends dinner and capri sun and we hung out and it was an enjoyable time.  Time flew by, and soon the strawberry-ness had chilled long enough to go in the ice cream maker.  It looked DELICIOUS!  I got out the ice cream maker, reviewed the directions since I have only used it once, and then my face fell as I realized I had not pre-frozen the bowl that spins the ice cream around until it magically transforms itself into a frozen treat.  I guess I am not the only one who causes summafun fails.

But the good news is that I will try again tomorrow.  Stop on by for some strawberry sorbet!  I promise it will be amazing!!!

** I probably should make no such guarantees.  I really have no way of knowing what it will taste like.**