Monday, April 9, 2012

Oatmeal and butter

This weekend was challenging, and I am the only one to blame for it. Before I get into the challenging bit, here's something that is going really well:

Oatmeal CVM from Patti Sexton, Monterey Wool Auction 2010

Plying! I spun 9 oz of CVM singles on a borrowed Hansen Minispinner while I was expecting  DangerMouse. Since I'm getting ready to start my SPAKAL spinning, I thought I should ply the TWO sweaters worth of singles I have resting on the plastic weaving bobbins. (This is, for the record, the only issue with using the plastic weaving bobbins for storing singles.)

I spun this woolen, because the staple length is on the shorter side, and if I thought I loved spinning it, it wasn't as much as I'm loving plying it. I just need to set it and pick which Hannah Fettig sweater I'm knitting out of it. Plying this makes me feel really accomplished and incredibly talented.

It also makes DangerMouse sleeeeeeepy.

(This is important to point out. I'm not just being a bragger-sandwich.)

I spent Saturday in the kitchen. Between baking sugar cookies for Easter dinner with my in-laws and doing prep for Easter brunch (at our house), my kitchen was a'bustlin' with activity. I really, really missed cooking and baking and it's so satisfying to be able to get back to it.

I pulled out my trusty copy of Joy of Cooking and looked at the recipe for sugar cookies. We were looking to make cookies that look like these:

Image stolen from justcrumbs. But seriously, go check out her etsy shop.

So. Sugar cookies. I looked at the recipe, and the recipe says it will make 3 dozen 2" round cookies. My cookie cutter was a 3" egg, and my brain mangled the math. I read "3 dozen 1" round cookies".

So I quadrupled the recipe. QUADUPLED.

"This is SUCH a good idea!" I kept saying, "I'm so excited to be baking! And they're going to be SO CUTE."

That meant using 10 sticks of butter. Somehow, this made PERFECT SENSE to me. I went along, cheerfully mixing, rolling out, and refrigerating the dough. Then it was time to cut out the cookies and bake them.

I made use of Andrew and his excellent spatial skills, so he did the cutting out, and I fired up my oven to the "convection" setting. (Three sheets of cookies baking evenly, simultaneously. It makes my heart skip a beat. But that might be the butter talking.)

After AN HOUR of cutting out cookies, Andrew asks how many more we're planning to do. It was at this point that I realize, we will have OVER ONE HUNDRED 3" eggs. That we're going to decorate.

Andrew may have voiced some concern about halfway through, to which I kept insisting, "This is STILL a good idea."

After the cookies were all baked (minus the scraps, which Mom rolled and froze for later use), I looked at the stack and nearly wept at the idea of having to ice and decorate all. These. Cookies.

This is only some of them.

Andrew had the great idea to only decorate the 48 cookies we were planning to take to Easter dinner, and it was an INSPIRED idea. We set up an assembly line, and iced, ear-ed, eye-d, and tail-ed the cookies.

I felt really stupid pretty, and to be totally honest, I was pretty hard on myself. Straight-up abusive. To his credit, Andrew insisted that it was STILL a good idea, the cookies were delicious, and hey! When have we ever had a hard time finding people interested in eating my baking?

Lesson learned? If you're tired and having a "pretty" day, have someone ELSE check your math.

Unless, of course, you have neighbors like ours, who told me that they would *cheerfully* take one for the team and help us out with the extras. It's definitely a tasty, tasty way to get closer to your neighbors.


  1. This was hilarious.
    Also, great advice. My family is coming over in a fortnight and I should probably print this out and pin it in the kitchen.

    These cookies look awesome though! They must have been a hit.

    Love the yawning DangerMouse! I should perhaps take my wheel out and start spinning again, if it makes babies sleepy. :)

  2. Mommy brain has caused me to have many pretty moments over the years. At least this mistake was a yummy one.

  3. Making four times the amount of cookie dough you need is brilliant. It freezes well. I even like frozen already-cooked cookies. For a while I would keep a box of frozen sugar cookies on hand and pull just one of them out and give it to the kid with some icing squeeze decorator things and some sprinkles. Instant five to ten minutes of kid-not-underfoot.

  4. It's fun when "pretty" makes the neighbors happy. I've done that before and since my neighbor is my sister she's very happy when I have pretty days.

  5. When I was a new mum, I went a week with weirdly greasy hair, until I realized instead of buying shampoo and conditioner, I had simply bought two different bottles of conditioner. Pretty is such a nice way of putting it. :)

    (Also it gets a bit easier once you get more sleep).

  6. Mommy brain on a pretty day! We all have it!

  7. This made me so I remember being tired with children and infants...then the brilliant idea would hatch in my head and I was off. It always turned into a "pretty" moment with my husband just looking at me. I now remember those days with complete fondness and actually miss them. Your post has made my day....enjoy your pretty moments.

  8. I always adore your stories! And I must say that you really have a knack for photographing that little sweet girl of yours!

    One of the many reasons I have nominated you for The Versatile Blog award


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