Sunday, June 27, 2010

Raspberry Lemoade Goodness

Hello Everyone!
Today I'm bringing you a very tasty treat.
These my dear people are Raspberry Lemonade Cupcakes.

Don't they look delightful?
Believe me they are.

Recipe brought to you by The Busty Baker adapted frome Lemon Yogurt Cupcakes in 125 Best Cupcake Recipes by Julie Hasson.
Makes 12 Cupcakes


1 1/4 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 egg
1/2 c. plain yogurt (I used Greek yogurt)
2 tsp. grated lemon zest
3 tbs. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp. lemon oil or lemon extract (I used more fresh lemon)
1/4 c. raspberry puree

*Preheat oven to 350. Line muffin tin with paper liners. Set aside.

*In small bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, and salt.

*In large bowl, whisk together sugar, butter, and egg until smooth. Add yogurt, lemon zest, and juice, and lemon extract, beating until smooth. Add flour mixture, beating just until smooth.

*Scoop 1 tbs. or so of batter into each prepared cupcake liner. Drop about 1 tsp. of raspberry puree onto batter. Drop another tbs. of batter on top of puree, then another tsp. of puree on top of batter. Swirl with a toothpick to give it the swirl pattern. Bake in preheated oven for about 22 to 25 min. Let cool in pan on rack for about 10 min. Remove and cool completely on rack. Top cooled cupcakes with frosting.

Raspberry Lemonade Buttercream
Makes about 2 cups (16-20 cupcakes)

2 c. confectioner's sugar
3/4 c. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tbs. raspberry puree
1 tbs. lemonade concentrate, thawed (Again, I used fresh lemon)
1/2 tsp. raspberry extract (I imaging using the raspberry puree would be fine)
Pinch of salt

*In a bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together confectioner's sugar, butter, raspberry puree, lemonade concentrate, raspberry extract, and salt until smooth.

*Spread frosting on cooled cupcakes and set aside at room temperature until ready to serve or for up to 8 hours.

Raspberry Puree
Joy of Baking

2 12oz. bags of frozen unsweetened raspberries
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon (optional)

*Thaw unsweetened raspberries in large fine meshed strainer suspended over a large bowl. Once the berries have completely thawed, force juice from the berries by gently pressing berries with back of large spoon. All that should remain in the strainer is the raspberry seeds. Throw away raspberry seeds. Stir in lemon juice and sugar to the raspberry juice.

*Store covered in the refrigerator up to a week or freeze up to a year.

*Makes approximately 1 3/4 cups.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Farmer's Market

My kids love fruit.
Now that soccer is over we can get the freshest of fresh fruits.

As you can see Luke is enjoying his Farmer's Market plum. I can buy $50 worth of fruit at the Farmer's Market and it will be gone by the end of the next day. It kills me to see it go so fast, but at the same time I am happy to see it go so fast. So now we are looking forward to this Saturday because we can make it part of our regular routine. The best part for the kids....they get to sample all the fruits as we pass by the stands. Then they tell me what was best so that I can get exactly what they want and like. I the Farmer's Market.

Now for the rest of you.....go find a local Farmer's Market. Trust me, you will be happy you did. Have a great day!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

A Decade Long Love Affair

Unless you count the years before the marriage.

Am I a sap? Not likely.
at Heart? Definitely!

Jeff and I got married 10 years ago today. I love him now as much as I ever have (trials, tribulations, frustrations and all). That's what it's about right? Loving your significant other despite the rocky, rough patches. When we got married we went the non-denominational route. So we didn't do the unity candle but did a rose exchange and we used the Apache Blessing as one of our readings. I have to say I still like it, it goes like this:

Apache Blessing

Now you will feel no rain,
For each of you will be shelter for the other.
Now you will feel no cold,
For each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there is no more loneliness,
For each of you will be companion to the other.
You are two persons,
But there is only one life before you.
Go now and enter the days of your life together,
And may your days be good and long upon the earth.

I think it just about says it all.
Happy Anniversary Jeff!

Monday, June 14, 2010

A Summer Full of Reading

Luke gets to attend a reading intervention class this summer, just before school starts up in the fall. I feel bad for him. At this point he is a full year behind in reading. He was fine at the first conference, a little behind at the second conference, and when I talked with his teacher last week she said he is now a full year behind. It seems like excessive regression. Why? How can a child regress so fast when he is at school working with the teacher and a parent volunteer, who specifically works on reading and comprehension? Why?

I know what the problem is. I do. It's the written part, which has to do with comprehension. It's also retaining the information in order to answer comprehension questions. When he is able to verbalize his comprehension is fine. It's when he has to put those thoughts in writing. He struggles with writing. He can't make his brain tell his hand what to write. There is a huge jump from second grad to third grade on how they answer comprehension questions. They can't give one word answers, it has to be a complete sentence, a complete thought. This is tough for him. I feel awful. I feel sad for him. I want to help, I want him to succeed and not struggle, I want him to learn powerful, helpful strategies. I just don't know how to give him the strategies to get through it.

Speaking of reading, do any of you brilliant minds know of a series that would hold a 9 year old's interest? I have not been successful in finding an acceptable series for him. Nothing I throw at him captures his attention, his interest, his mind. I am willing to try anything at this point. I know it is important to enjoy what you read, it makes you want to keep reading.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Summer Days

I'm a little terrified of what summer will bring. For weeks now the boys have been nit picking each other over trivial things and getting into fist fights because the nit picking gets a little out of hand. They are just plain mean to each other. It looks as if it's going to be a long summer. I'm not sure we are all going to survive it. I must be creative, I must have a plan, I must be smarter than them, I must be one step ahead of them at all times. They might even get to a point where fighting just isn't worth it. If they don't I'll just have show them what I'm made of.

We do have plans. I have signed them up for All Sports Camp, it's one week long and I'm already looking forward to it. Sad, but true. I know, I know, I should cherish this time, they are only young once, but they are testing my sanity and right now the score looks something like this:
Them - 1
Me - 0
I'm off to a great start.

We are also taking a week and going camping. Husband is a little wishy washy as to when because of the snow. We camp about an hour north of Tahoe and there is still snow. He tells me today that he wants to be able to go fishing......NOT ice fishing. So the dates are tentative and that kills me. I am not overly organized, but when it comes to plans and planning vacations I need exact dates, I don't do well with generalities.

A little bit of excitement will be headed our way in July. We will be getting a puppy. A Chocolate Lab to be exact. The kids and I are excited! I think the hubby is a little indifferent and the neighbors may be a little reluctant. I say reluctant because Julia really isn't a dog person and because we all live on the same property she gets to deal with love this puppy by default.

What do you have planned for summer?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Funny Bullies Suck on a Bike and other Random Thoughts

Today I needed a bit of randomness to round out the day. I am joining Keely over at The Un Mom.


Bullies Suck! My oldest was tackled and dog piled by a number of boys, a bit unprovoked. I know playing kickball can be pretty competitive and getting your turn to kick is ultra important. What these kids forgot to see is that one push can get out of hand very quickly.

Luke played a funny on me:
Luke: Mom, look under there.
Me: Under where?
Luke: Ah ha ha, I made you say it!
Get it? Underwear? He's such a card.

Was driving to school to pick up the boys and saw a great bumper sticker that said Gas Sucks, Ride a Bike. The irony? The lady driving the vehicle was overweight. Got a kick out of that.

Where did society go wrong? Very wrong! Kids of today have this unhealthy sense of entitlement. Like we OWE them. Owe them for what? We brought them into this world, don't they owe us? They owe us good behavior, good citizenship, manners, etc. I know it's up to us to teach them all that...and more, but those who don't are killin' me. An example: My youngest was at a birthday party, I picked him up and his first question? Where is my goody bag? I had to explain that he was there to celebrate a friend and their special day and the parent's are NOT required to hand out goodie bags. He wasn't happy about it,, but he got the point. Life doesn't hand you goody bags for showing up.

That's all I got for today.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Looking Forward to Summer

There is a story behind this here ice tray. Isn't there always a story? But of course! Luke and Trevor decided it would be great fun to take one of Adam's LEGO men and smash the head to smithereens. Between the two of them they smashed it, trashed it, destroyed it....into tiny little pieces. They are so kind. As a result they had to buy a new LEGO guy for their younger brother Adam. I went to the LEGO store and got him 3 new LEGO men. He loves them. But while I was there I found these very cool ice trays. They are shaped like little LEGO men. I just couldn't leave without them.

Aren't they cute? I made ice out of them immediately.

Luke is liking these ice trays. Can you tell by the smile on his face? Sheer joy.

Here is the LEGO ice guy a little closer.

In case you were wondering......Luke and Trevor didn't get off scott free, they had to pay for the new LEGO guys. That was their consequence for destroying something that doesn't belong to them. Adam got the better end of the deal, he got 3 guys instead of just a head. He also won't allow his brothers to play with his new LEGO men. Yet another natural consequence for bad behavior.

Now I need to come up with some fun ideas to fill these trays. Maybe frozen yogurt or jello. Do YOU have any ideas? What would you make with these fun little ice trays?