Tuesday, March 18, 2008

James is 2

When my little James turned 2 last month, we had many celebrations. Family & friends gathered, lots of food was enjoyed, and we happily watched him in the centre of it all. I didn't get a chance to post anything about it until now (our house has had a revolving door containing the flu, bronchitus, teething, etc.) But through it all, James' robust and happy self has kept us laughing. He is truly the sweetest little guy with a mischievous spark behind those eyes. He is his big brother's shadow, but he is still so individual. He smiles the second he wakes up and barely stops all day long. He has such a happy soul.

Glen & I sit up at night and picture our boys as teenagers. We can already see the broken curfews and adventures he will pursue, probably with Camden by his side to lecture him and bail him out of trouble. But time is already passing so quickly, I need to slow things down and savour every moment while he is still this small. It won't last long enough.

Happy Birthday Jamie!!!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Lemony Sunshine

We've been hit with more snow. A lot more snow. And as pretty as it is, I am sort of over it. It is March Break afterall. And instead of being able to set out on some of our planned adventures, we are homebound making forts out of the sofa pillows and baking.

I did make one of my favorite desserts. I feel like I say that a lot though, so I came up with my Top 5 Favorite Desserts List this weekend. (Yes, this is what occupies my mind on a Saturday night!). Here they are, in no particular order, because that would be impossible to do!

1. Outrageous Brownies Barefoot Contessa
2. Shortbread Meltaways (with Toffee Bits) -possible the best cookie ever!
3. Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting Tessa Kiros - Falling Cloudberries
4. Salted caramel Sauce to be poured on anything....ice cream, cheesecake, etc.
5. Sticky Lemon Pudding Jill Dupleix (from Delicious magazine)

Of course, there are many runners up and honourable mentions. World's Best Lemon Tart (Richard Sax), any kind of Pavlova, Salted Caramel & Milk Chocolate Mousse (from Lisa), Peanut Butter & Jelly Bars (Barefoot Contessa), Laurie Colwin's gingerbread, and so on, and so on. With choices like these, it's hard to make a decision of what to make! But I did, and in the midst of this winter wonderland, I needed a little sunshine so we had the Sticky Lemon Pudding.
It is heavenly, really. And I am always amazed at those recipes that provide a silky, creamy pudding type curd beneath a fluffy bit of sponge cake. This one is SO lemony good and dusted with icing sugar at the end.

I found the recipe in an older issue of Delicious magazine (the Australian one). It's from Jill Dupleix. Here it is:

Sticky Lemon Pudding
serves 4

70g unsalted butter, plus more for the baking dish
180g sugar
2 tsp finely grated lemon zest (from about 2 lemons)
3 eggs, seperated
60g plain flour, sifted
1 cup of milk
100ml lemon juice (from about 3 lemons)
icing sugar, for dusting

Preheat the oven to 350.
With an electric mixer, beat the butter, sugar and lemon zest until pale.
Beat in the egg yolks, one at a time.
Add the flour and milk, alternatively until you have a smooth batter, beating well. Lastly, beat in the lemon juice.

In another bowl, beat the egg whites until firm but not stiff, then fold into the batter. Pour into a buttered, 1-litre ovenproof dish and place in a large baking pan. Half-fill the pan with hot water, and bake for 50 minutes or until it is lightly browned and set on top, with a soft base of gooey lemon curd. Remove the dish from the water carefully, dust with icing sugar and serve immediately.

I hope it becomes a favorite of yours too!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

carrying on

It's been a slow process, and it's not completely finished just yet. But I don't feel that any room in our entire house is ever completely finished. There is always room for some small item on a shelf or a unique piece to hang up on the wall. But my sewing room is making progress. Little by little.
I ordered this poster and hung it up over the weekend. I first spotted it here and knew instantly I had to have it. I ordered it from here and framed it with a Ribba frame from Ikea. Aaaaahhhh, I feel calmer already.

Glen found me this great blue table second hand too. I can't believe it was only $20. It's in my favorite corner of the room with shelves that my Dad handmade when I was a kid. I repainted them a few years ago, and now they are home to some of my favorite things.

At the end of a long day, I sit in this corner and try to sew or plan new projects. Some nights, when I am too tired to accomplish anything, I just sit there and enjoy my little corner. It's my very own little nook, full of my favorite things.