Saturday, December 31, 2011

So Close - 2011 in Review

I came so close to posting at least once at month on the blog this year.  I skipped November, and I don't feel like I've really been that busy.  But looking back on it, we got one friend moved into a new apartment, had a seventy-fifth birthday bash/family reunion for my grandmother, and did the whole Thanksgiving thing.  In hindsight, it was a pretty full month, but I do wish I'd done *something* on the blog that month.  It mars an otherwise good year.

We planted a garden and had some measure of success.  I'll definitely be doing it again next year, whether it's at The Research Assistant's home or mine.

The Research Assistant got married to a wonderful fella we all love.  We spent a good chunk of the year working on that one day, and I think we did almost a good a job with it as she did when she chose the Pharmacist.
(Photo credit to Arden Ward.)

The Quad went on the annual beach trip again this year, but we had this little addition to accompany us this time.  Spock went everywhere with us, even to the movies, and it was fun taking pictures of him along the way.  Definitely one of my favorite memories of the year.

This little guy had yet another eye surgery.  I was devastated that the trauma had happened again, but Dr. Korsch saved his eye again.  The whole team there, along with the folks at Dr. Anne England's office in Vestavia, have our unending thanks.  Other than that and the embarrassing bow he had to endure for the above picture, he had an okay year.

This thing continues to have a life kind of like Mary Poppins: practically perfect in every way.  And I wouldn't have it any other way.  She is one of the few bright spots in my life that never dims, even when I'm in the blackest of moods.

There was a lot of love from family.  
(Bottom photo credit to Douglas Photography.)

Jay and I are grateful for all of our many blessings, and we wish you and yours a wonderful holiday season and happy new year!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Baked Oatmeal

The Research Assistant found this recipe in The Fresh Market's monthly booklet...thing.  We baked it for the first time when we went camping, and I've been hooked ever since.  We were pretty faithful to the original recipe the first go round, substituting an extra quarter cup of brown sugar for the honey because the Research Assistant hates honey.

I decided I wanted to make it again, this time with a little more fall inspired flavor.  And thus one of my favorite new eats was born.

There are no pictures to accompany this post.  Let's face it, my kitchen is a mess, and oatmeal isn't exactly photogenic in a dim kitchen at midnight.  But trust me, it's tasty!

Baked Oatmeal - inspired by The Fresh Market and reinvented by FloCo.

3 cups old fashioned oats
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground clove
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup brown sugar (I used a 1/4 cup Splenda Brown Sugar Blend to cut down on the Engineer's and my sugar intake)
2 cups almond milk
1/4 cup coconut oil (or any other cooking oil/melted butter)
1/3 cup applesauce
1 egg, beaten
4 small to medium McIntosh or Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into bite size pieces

Break egg into medium bowl and beat until a gorgeous yellow color.  Add coconut oil and mix well.  Then add almond milk, applesauce, and brown sugar.  Mix.

Combine the oats, spices, and baking powder in a large bowl.  Add the wet mixture to this, and pour into a greased two quart casserole dish.  Bake in preheated 400 degree oven for twenty minutes.  Remove, add apples, mix, and return to oven for another twenty minutes.  Nom.

Sunday, December 11, 2011


I bothered tidying up our room today, even going so far as to make up the bed.  Naturally, this means Edie and Bailey decide to jump on the bed to root around for a bit.  I grabbed my camera and made them sit there for a few minutes so I could snap some new photos of them.  They were....slightly more cooperative than usual.  Which isn't saying much.  (Also, sorry the color is so warm in them.  That's actually what it looks like with the terrible lighting in our bedroom at night.)

"Um, uh-what are you doing?  No."

"I'm still not looking at you."

"Wait, what? Pictures?"

"I will look you.  I am sweet and lovely.  Even if my hair is jacked."

"Fine.  Is this what you want?  Here."

"I'm starting to get crazy.  Let's do this."
"I really don't want to do this anymore"

"Look how far I can tilt my head?"
"Help me, man."

"This is insufferable."