Whatcha Doin?

Well, I’ve been trying to muster up the motivation to work on my entry for this month’s Cupcake Hero. I have 11 days left to bake ’em up, write it up, then post them. I’ve had this idea for about a week and I’m trying to turn my conceptualization into reality. Haha, is that even a word??? Anyway, I’m working on it today, so wish me luck.

I also have these posts in the draft stage…I’m such a procrastinator!

white chocolate chip coconut pecan cookies

cookies & cream cupcakes with cookies & cream whipped cream frosting

chococonutoffee blondies

090713.6 chocolate chip cookies - bubbe

And I’ve of course been at home with these two loves of my life. 🙂 Going back to work in October’s gonna suck.

DSC_1090-tile

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Teaser

I’m so tired and busy lately that I just can’t find the energy to blog.  I mean, blogging doesn’t require all that much energy necessarily, but it does require my brain to be “on” and functioning.  I just can’t seem to muster up the brain power to sit down and give you something coherent.

In the meantime, I leave you with this.  It’s fairly easy to make, if you can find the ingredients – not in my neck of the woods.  Luckily my mom was able to bring me some. It’s sticky, and if you don’t work quickly, it gets tough on you.

ball of mystery

Anyone know what it is?  I’ll give you a hint.  This one is filled with a sweetened red bean filling.  So yummy!

Change

I’ve never been really good with change. I like schedules, I take things slowly, I like a little spontaneity, but I’m generally a planner.  I’ve worked for the same company for 8 years.  Not really out of loyalty or that they’re a great company to work for, but because I’m comfortable.

I guess it was finally time for a change because I gave my two weeks notice on Friday!!! AHHHHH! I think my heart was going a mile a minute from the time I accepted my new job to the time I told my manager that I was leaving.  And all this happened within the span of a week and a half.  EEEK!

I’d originally been offered a job prepping and cooking for a small Thai restaurant.  The people who own the restaurant are the nicest people you’ll ever meet, but the hours and the pay were on the low side.  I told them I would make a decision by Friday (August 15th).  In the meantime, I’d gone to a local bakery to see if they had any openings.  But, they didn’t do their own hiring, I had to go through an employment agency.  I went to the employment agency to fill out an application and talk to the account manager, but he was out sick.  I called the next day and he was still out.  I was finally able to talk to him the day after that and he was shocked that I wanted to leave my corporate job to work in a bakery.  I told him, I was just trying to follow my heart.  He set up an interview for Friday afternoon.  I spoke with the owner and he explained a few things, showed me what I’d be doing, then we talked schedule and numbers. 

An hour later, after discussing all this with Hubby, I accepted the baking position. Even though I’m taking a huge paycut, I’ll have to be at work earlier than ever and it’s not as flexible as my current job, it is a HUGE step in the direction I think I’ve finally mapped out for myself AND, I’ll have more time in the afternoons to spend with MC. I have to work on Saturdays, but I’ll probably have 1 or 2 week days that will make up for it.

I felt bad that I had to turn down the job at the Thai restaurant.  I think that would have been a great place to work and some wonderful people to work with.  The owner was very understanding and even told me if things didn’t work out, to come back and talk to them.  Awww…the owner of the bakery didn’t give me those same warm & fuzzies, but I guess that’s the tradeoff.

I never really knew what I wanted to do with my life. I went to school and majored in Business Administration, because it was such a good base for a lot of different options. I didn’t want to get into the medical profession, like my parents and there was too much school to become a lawyer. Yeah, I know, I’m going back to school now, but it’s different. I’m taking a class one night a week for four hours. Not the same thing. 😛

I’m not sure how this all came about really. Growing up, we didn’t do a ton of cooking together. My mom just sort of assigned tasks, or we just pitched in every now and then. It wasn’t a hands on every night thing. Of course we baked the requisite batch of cookies and cakes every now and then, but again, not on a regular basis. I honestly don’t remember what I lived on in college. Well, except for food from the restaurants I worked at and mac & cheese from the “blue box”.

As I ventured out of my parents house I was discovering new foods and flavors; Indian, Japanese, American, even “bar” food. And of course, the greatness of baked goods. Or, not baked. 🙂 It wasn’t until I got married, that I really started cooking. Trying to cook meals for one is do-able, but didn’t really interest me I guess. I was an avid Food Network watcher and enjoyed watching the vegetables being chopped, the cakes being baked, the meats being grilled…but things didn’t really click until I had someone to do it for. Is that strange? Have any of you felt that way?

I’d try to make what I saw on tv, come up with my own ideas, surf the internet for dinner ideas. It’s all I thought about. Then I started baking. Cookies, cupcakes, muffins…nothing too hard or too fancy. But I was hooked. It’s the idea of starting with a set of ingredients and using them in various different combinations to make something satisfying and pleasing. My favorite part isn’t really eating the end result, although that is definitely a plus (TO MY HIPS) but it’s watching everyone else enjoy it. That is really what makes me happy. The feeling that I’ve provided them some sort of joy, if only for the few minutes that they eat it. I’m not alone in this right?

And here I am today, hoping I can bring even a smidgen of joy to your lives with these pictures and recipes of deliciousness (I’m a good word maker upper).  I’d also like to pass along the Brillante Weblog award, given to me by Recipe Girl, to the following people who have, in their own way, brought some joy to my life:

Stephanie @ Ice Cream Before Dinner – her cupcakes always make me drool! And she seems like an awesome sister. At least I’d classify a sister as awesome if she sent me cupcakes in the mail!
Erin @ Prudence Pennywise – with the cost of everything on the rise these days, she shows us how to make inexpensive meals that are both delicious and healthy.
Marilyn @ Simmer Till Done – her Bananarama references make me laugh aloud and her allegiance to the Jayhawks doesn’t hurt either.
Clara @ I Heart Cuppycakes – do I need to spell it out? She HEARTS cuppycakes!

Course 1, Class 2 aka OMG, I Have a Hand Cramp!

Phrases overhead in my head tonight:
“What the hell am I doing?”
“Is this really fun?”
“Parchment bags suck.”
“Hers looks better than mine.”
“Aren’t you supposed to tell me how much gel to use?”
“Why are you just standing there?!  Help me!”
“What?  Twelve of these things?”

*sigh*

That’s how good things went tonight.  Well, ok, it wasn’t THAT bad.  But my hand is seriously tired, as well as my back.  I couldn’t find a really comfortable position, so I alternated between sitting down and standing up.
 
rainbow cake
star border, ooooo

We practiced stars and writing and transferring a template (rainbow) to a cake. Then we actually filled in the template.  I decided not to write anything on my cake simply because I didn’t have any time…and it wasn’t easy.

rainbow cake
didn’t turn out too bad.  kinda proud of myself.

Oh yeah, and we made some bases for our roses, which is step 1. Next week is step 2. We’re supposed to bring a dozen of them. I just finished them a little bit ago so I wouldn’t have to worry about it all this week. I have to make more frosting – which btw, tastes NASTY – and bring in another frosted cake. I think I’ll try a round cake this time. Maybe something I can submit to the Layers of Cake event being hosted by quirky cupcake. It will give me a chance to brush up on my layer cake skills.  And believe me, I need alot of brushing up.

rainbow cake
you like the chocolate flecked frosting? it’s all the rage.

Terrorizers & Hypocriticizers

Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay

It’s rascist (“Zip it Hello Kitty”), it’s sexual (“I’m starting the bottomless trend” – there are better ones, but I’m trying to keep my blog PG), it’s gross (“I’m taking the most incredible dump of all time, man“),  it’s pot-filled (“So, you like, smoke weed, then throw people in jail for smoking weed? Thats so hypocritical, dude.”), it’s FRICKIN HILARIOUS.  It makes fun of everyone and everything.  It’s so stupid, you can’t help but laugh.

WATCH IT!  That’s all I have to say.