Wednesday, March 31, 2010

"And There Were Three Little Bears...

...sitting in chairs..." ~ Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

Some of these photos are blurry and all of them could have used some lighting and color enhancements.  But in the interests of time, which seems to be at an all time low these days, I added these photos without editing them.

They're all in sequence, taken within seconds of eachother.  I couldn't pick just a few.  The facial expressions, the mayhem, it's all there.  The only thing you're missing out on is the incredible noise level.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

A Catch Up Post

This post is dedicated to Grandma Judy who has quietly been living in a Bug, Bex and Dee photograph void for the past few months and whose patience with such void has been overly gracious!

So.  A few things.

#1.  Bananas are good.  We go through 78 a day.  78 bunches that is.  Not 78 individual bananas.  Just to clarify.  In case you thought we were getting off easy on our grocery bill. 

It goes against my buy-local policy, but local options in this case don't exist.  Plus, how can I not buy bananas for this face?


#2.  Sometimes I like to leave them to their own devices just to see what transpires.   
It's often entertaining.  Sometimes dangerous.  But usually just entertaining. 

(Stay at home moms really live on the edge).
#3.  Bug will be representing Native Americans in her dance recital this summer.  Her in her costume makes the Too Cute for Words top ten list. 

#4.  If she gets any more beautiful, I may have to look away, lest my heart burst into a thousand pieces.
I can't even begin to tell you what an amazing person she is blossoming into.  She is so bright, so caring, so inquisitive, so earnest, so concerned.  And she loves Jesus like crazy.  It really is something to see. 

One of my favorite examples: One day I found her bible opened to the picture of Jesus on the cross.  His hands and feet had been scraped off the page. Little scraps of Kleenex had been put on the scrapes. I asked her why she'd messed up her bible like that.  She told me she'd been trying to take the nails out of poor Jesus and put band aids on him.  I just love her.

#5.  Peek-a-boo.  That about sums it up. 

Friday, March 12, 2010


I was baptized last Sunday. 

This is the testimony I read right before:

I was raised in a church, baptized as an infant, and can’t remember a time when I didn’t have a relationship with God. It seemed foolish to want to get baptized at the age of 33.

But a new relationship with Christ has been surfacing within me. One evening a few months ago, Mike ---and I started talking about the bible. He shared some passages with me that I had never given a passing glance to, but he talked about them with such passion and excitement and shed a different light on them. It opened my eyes to the sheer volume of information that is available to me if I would only open up the bible and start reading it. I left Mike's house thinking “I want to be that on fire for Jesus. I want to be that passionate about the bible”. So I opened up my bible to page one and started reading. I don’t know why it took me so many years to do that or why it became so apparent that I should do that during my conversation with Mike, but God puts people in our path to inspire us at just the perfect moment.

I am overwhelmed by how it is changing my life. There are so many things I’m learning, so many truths being uncovered or confirmed. Now I am a bottomless pit for more knowledge, for more understanding. I just finished reading Lee Strobel’s The Case for Christ and I was astounded at the amount of evidence for Christ being a real person who really walked this earth and died for our sins and was truly resurrected. Now this is silly because I’ve always believed these things. But now they’re being revealed to me in a whole new amazing way.

I’ve been a believer through emotion and faith. Now I’m also a believer through evidence and facts. So it really is like there’s a new believer being discovered in me, and it is so exciting. I find that I want to talk about the bible or Jesus with everyone!

So I wanted to make the choice as an adult to be baptized, but I had doubts and personal obstacles to overcome. I didn’t want to seem foolish or self-indulgent. I didn’t want to be thought of as the believer of 33 years who gets baptized just for appearances. But Kent shared a scripture with me that clinched the deal and I’d like to share it with you. Written by Paul in 1st Corinthians chapter 1 verses 27-31: 27:

But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, 29so that no one may boast before him. 30It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 31Therefore, as it is written: "Let him who boasts boast in the Lord".

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

When Your CSA Box Gives You Lemons...

...make a Lemon Tart!! 

I couldn't even wait to take a picture before diving into it.  Isn't it so nice and glossy and creamy?!

I used the recipe for Lemon Tart from The New Best Recipe Cookbook (a cookbook from America's Test Kitchen).  The recipe called for making lemon curd (from the juice and zest of about 5 of our CSA lemons, hallelujah!) on the stovetop, straining out the zest, and making sure to use all non-reactive bowls and utensils.  It was so worth it. 

The crust was perfect--tender but not chewy, with bite, but not crunchy. What was it? I don't know. It was perfect. (The crust did brown too much on the edges, but I should have been watching it closer and covered it).

The tart was creamy, rich, and bursting with lemon flavor, not cloying sweetness.

It was the best lemon anything I have ever had. 

Lemon Tart from The New Best Recipe cookbook:

1 recipe Sweet Pastry Dough for Prebaked Tart Shell, fully baked and still warm (see below)
7 large egg yolks, plus 2 large eggs
1 C plus 2 T sugar
2/3 C juice and 1/4 C finely grated zest from 4-5 medium lemons
pinch salt
4 T unsalted butter, cut into 4  pieces
3 T heavy cream

Oven 375.  In a medium non-reactive bowl whisk yolks and whole eggs til combined.  Add sugar & whisk.  Add lemon juice and zest and whisk.  Transfer to a non reactive saucepan and add butter pieces.  Cook over med-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until curd thickens to a thin sauce-like consistency and registers 170 on a candy thermometer (~5 min).  Immediately pour the curd through a fine mesh stainless steel strainer over a clean non-reactive bowl.  Stir in heavy cream.  Pour curd into warm tart shell immediately.  Bake til filling is shiny & opaque and center 3 inches jiggle slightly when shaken, 10-15 min.  Cool on wire rack about 1 hr. Remove outer ring and tart pan bottom and place on a serving plate.  Serve within several hours.

Sweet Pastry Dough for Prebaked Tart Shell

1 large egg yolk
1 T heavy cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 C flour
2/3 C confectioner's sugar
1/4 tsp salt
8 T cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

Whisk yolk, cream, vanilla in small bowl.  Place flour, c. sugar, and salt in a food processor and process briefy to combine.  Add butter and process til mixture resembles coarse meal--about 15 1 second pulses.  With the processor running, add the egg mixture and process until the dough just comes together, about 12 seconds.  Turn the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and press into a 6 inch disk.  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 2 days.

Remove the dough from the fridge.  Unwrap and roll out between 2 lightly floured sheets of parchment or plastic wrap to a 13 inch round.  Trasfer dough to a 9 inch tart pan using a rolling pin to unroll it over the pan.  Ease the dough into the pan corners and press the dough against the fluted edges.  Roll the rolling pin over the top of the tart pan to remove the excess dough.  Set the dough lined trt pan on a large plate and freeze 30 min. 

Meanwhile, heat oven to 375.  Set the dough lined tart pan on a baking sheet and press foil into the tart shell and over the edge and fill with pie weights.  Bake 30 min.  Remove foil and weights and bake 5-8 min longer.