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Saturday, February 9, 2008

The Pie is Sugar-free!

Every month, the provision of deserts for Bigboy's masonic lodge is willingly volunteered by me. According to several friends desert hogs, my skills are repeatedly highly requested and store bought just won't do.

I decided this month I needed to expand my desert baking skills beyond cobbler. During my visit to allrecipes, I found a delicious recipe for chocolate chip coffee cake. Coffee cake- yum. Chocolate- YUM. The presence of Sugar- TORTURE!!!

I also decided I would take a shot at making lemon bars. I've never made lemon bars before, and I'm not even sure if what came out of the oven looked like what it was supposed to. How bad can lemon bars be? Flour: OK. Lemon rind: OK. Lemon juice: OK. Eggs: OK. Powdered sugar: HELP ME! Table sugar: NOOOOOOOOOO!!!

Forty days of no licking the bowl, spatula, or spoon.
Forty days of no quality checking my product before it gets served.
Forty days without snitching chocolate chips.

And what does my dear husband say?


What do my aggravating companions friends say?

Would you like some sugar in your coffee?

What am I doing at this point?


Last night, I decided that my two deserts weren't enough. Since I was out at Safeway getting rolls for the lodge's Lobster Bisque and salad dinner, I would also pick up a peach pie.

I went all through the night going without any desert. Of course, my friends aggravating companions rubbing in my Lent season decision until 11:00 pm. Chocolate chip coffee cake went home with the temple custodian. Lemon bars and peach pie came home with us. As I was putting everything away, the lifesaver of the lifesaver of the night was found. The peach pie was SUGAR FREE!

There is now a very empty pie tin and two dirty plates.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Sugar, Give me Sugar.

Please, someone tell me I'm crazy. We are now in the Lent season and I've given up sugar for these forty days (plus Sunday's), particularly refined and processed sugar. Honestly, do you know what this means? No sugar on my corn chex, yikes. No sugar in my coffee YIKES. No ice cream; I'm almost sure you will find me in Ben and Jerry's withdrawals. My favorite is Jamaican Me crazy. No deserts, which I am well reputed for producing and am producing for tomorrow night. No sugared soda, which is a personal addiction. I have to be crazy.

When it comes to making a lifestyle change this this, there has to be some level insanity required. I now I'm giving up something that is rather bad for me. There are always challenges. I've already been dealing with my sweet tooth since yesterday. I had to pick up a diet soda today. I don't even like diet sodas. Most of them give me headaches becasue of the sweeteners used in them. I put sugar in my mug. Fortunately, I put the sugar in before I poured the coffee. Unfortunately, the mug I put sugar in was the travel mug I used this morning. Since it was already wet, I had to put it in the sink and take a new mug. I stopped myself from putting sugar in my coffee for our morning trip to the ferry. I'm going without any sweetener in my coffee. I may just switch to tea for forty days. I seem to do much better without sugar in tea.

Tomorrow is going to be just as hard. I have two deserts to bake for the boys of the lodge. I decided I needed to make something other than apple pie or cobbler. I found at www.allrecipes.com a recipe for lemon bars and chocolate chip coffee cake. This will be my first attempt at lemon bars. I've done cakes before, so coffee cake shouldn't be a major problem. Just for me, and whoever chooses, I've picked up some frozen berries and yogurt for tomorrow night.

I know I can make it through this period without sugar. However, I can't do it alone. I need God to guide and strengthen me. This is a major valley for me to travel through.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Wordless Wednesday- In the Jungle

Take 5minutesformom and visit other Wordless Wednesday moments.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Writer's Block , Now?

I don't really want to say I'm in a non-blogging mood. I don't really like the idea of saying that. The state of being in a non-blogging mood is for bloggers who do not consider themselves writers; just people who blog to vent into cyberspace and hope someone cares enough to read it.

However, I will tell you I'm in a two-day stretch of writer's block. I prefer experiencing writer's block on Wednesday. Wednesdays are "Wordless Wednesdays" on the blog. This is my time to ground my writing skills, reflect in the silence of a photo, and remove myself from the chaotic verbiage of society. Why couldn't I come down with writer's block tomorrow?

Since I can't really think of anything to write about, I will make a prayer request over the blog. I am applying for a part-time job with Alpine Access. I really really REALLY REALLY need this job. This is far more consistent pay than I was receiving working with ASI. I didn't realize working in their human resources department was a commission based system. I don't really agree with that type of pay for a position expected to interview people. I'm now desperately in need of the extra cash flow into the family. I have bills to pay, a roof to replace, a furnace to replace, walls to paint, a husband to head-straighten, kids to school, feed and clothe, masons to support feed, cub scouts to lead, Sunday school to teach, clothes to sew, quilts to make, yarn to knit...

I have an interview with Alpine Access tomorrow. Please pray for me that it be God's will that I take this job. His will comes first, and hopefully, it matches mine.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Shuttle Bus Anyone?

Ah, the testosterone experience of a lifetime-the browsing of the Lacey, WA Cabela's. I've grown up with the catalogs coming to our house. When I was on my way to college at UNL, I stopped in at Cabela's in Kearney, NE. Very cool store, I thought. That was also fourteen years ago when Cabela's in Kearney was the only store outside of Sidney, NE. I thought it was cool then.

Nothing could have prepared me for what I experienced yesterday. We made the trip to Olympia to visit Bigboy's grandfather, and decided to see the new store on our way back. This was definitely a different experience. Finding it wasn't difficult once we found the never ending line of SUVs and trucks in the oncoming traffic. All you had to do was follow their path. Once there, stretching beyond visible bounds, was the vast sea of parking. Most of course which was occupied by trucks and SUVs. Parking is available for RVs in a separate section, with water and power hook-ups readily available. We were fortunate enough to find an open space for our sub-compact car somewhere in this ocean. Is there a shuttle bus anywhere? I can't see the front door of this place. Where am I supposed to enter the store?

Now that we finally found the front door, finding our way around turned out to be an amazing feat. This place is cool, no,awesome, more like amazing. If you look beyond the mass of people everywhere, you see what they call Conservation Mountain. On this indoor mountain, there are various wildlife, preserved with information blurbs. In the middle of the mountain, is an aquarium. I could have spent hours just reading about everything in and around the mountain.

Eventually, we were able to wander around enough to find furniture, gifts, shoes, clothing (most of the lower floor is dedicated to clothing) and fishing gear. We never made it to the boats and boating supplies. Upstairs, we found everything hunting related. WOW. We never made it over to camping gear. Amazingly, we only spent an hour and a half in the entire store.

Beadgirl decided it would be a good idea to begin whining after the first half hour. As with all kids, this whining went on about being bored, feet hurting, brothers pestering, and general excuses for whining. We have certain standards in our house regarding attitudes, and things just got to an inappropriate level.

Still no shuttle bus for the trip back to the car, we finally found ourselves. That parking lot was still full when we left. There was still traffic a massive heard of SUVs and trucks coming into the parking lot. I wonder if they found a place to park.