Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Favorite Book

There is no single book that we have read in our home more than "The Wheels On the Bus." It is the most beloved book that we own. I have more pictures of this being read than of any other reading time. I have to hide this book by day because Alexander can spot it nearly anywhere and will start begging for "'Bas' Peeeeez!" And he's never ready to be done. Here is one recent reading.

Alex moving one of the tabs (It's a moving book)

Lucy, singing along. Loud. Always loud. =)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Light Corn Syrup Substitute and Sweet Things

My sister called me tonight and said, "I need Light Corn Syrup for a recipe, but don't have any. What can I substitute?" I knew you could make a substitute, since it is mostly sugar and water, but am loathe to guess for someone else's recipes. Messing up my own is one thing! So, I looked it up. It's very simple to make and, in an age where we are coming to recognize all of the detrimental effects that corn syrup has upon our health, and that of our children, I thought that I would pass this along for you to use as well! (Keep looking below the recipe for some of our Smith sweeties, too!)

2 c. white sugar
3/4 c. water
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
Dash of salt

Combine all ingredients in a heavy, large pan. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover it for 3 minutes to get sugar crystals off the sides of the pan. Uncover and cook until it reaches the "soft ball" stage. Stir often. Cool the syrup and store it in a covered container at room temperature. It will keep for about 2 months. Yields about 2 cups.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

St. Patrick's Day Parade

We were blessed to attend our first parade this month! We went to Sioux Falls' St. Patrick's Day Parade, which, apparently, is a big deal in Sioux Falls! There were so many people there and they were all quite festively attired with wigs, hats, and such. Many people had their dogs there with green leis around their necks or many had even dyed there dogs' fur green! Yikes! We got to watch part of the parade from the boardroom at Daddy's office, which offered a great view, warmth, and easier corraling of small children. Here are some pictures from the day. I hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Banana Blueberry Pancakes

Alright, I know that I've been sorely remiss in keeping this up, so I'll try again. Here's a start!

A couple of weeks ago I was watching an episode of Jon and Kate Plus Eight (borrowed from Netflix) where they made Banana Blueberry Pancakes. Yum! I decided that we needed to try making some ourselves, so I experimented with this recipe; hands-down the best pancakes I've ever eaten! They're light, fluffy, and so yummy that you don't need any syrup (or really even butter, for that matter). My kids wanted a little "snow" on them, or powdered sugar, as most of the world calls it, but I think it was more the principle of the thing because they did not need it! You have to give these a try! I am going to experiement next with apple cinnamon, I think...

1 1/2 cups sifted all purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, well beaten
1 1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup butter, melted
2/3 cup mashed banana
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries

This recipe will yield about 24 pancakes.

1. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

2. Add eggs, milk, butter, bananas and vanilla.

3. Stir until well blended and smooth.

4. Fold in blueberries.

5. Spoon large tablespoons of batter onto greased, preheated griddle or skillet.

6. Once bubbles begin to appear, flip pancakes only once.

7. Enjoy!