Ice cream wasn’t the only thing on the menu though I could have it for breakfast lunch and dinner. We also made a roast, crepes, roasted tomato soup, a roasted chicken dinner, and a barley grain salad. It isn’t gluttony, its meal-prep for the week and it ensures that I can get a proper dinner on the table most evenings. Do you meal prep for the week?
I’ve been watching The Great British Baking Show. As a result, I’ve been in a bit of a baking craze and made these cinnamon buns and now the carrot cupcakes with maple cream cheese buttercream. I had great helpers.
Both Eliza and Sophia were great pipers much to my surprise. I like baking with the girls as it provides a welcome reprieve from their typical play. They get to be creative and we learn about science (e.g., what does baking soda do in a batter and what is the difference between baking soda and baking powder). Besides that, we visited Bartram’s Garden which was just lovely. The weather was beautiful and the girls enjoyed exploring. It is difficult to believe that such peace and solitude can be found in the city.
Mere minutes until bath and bed time and these two are hard at work on a new coloring book. They had both decided that the fish on the left is Dory and insisted on looking up the picture of the promo poster so that they could color it just so. That was Saturday and followed a busy morning where we made dough for Punitions and attended The Little Red Riding hood.
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Baba and Dedushka invited the girls over on Sunday as they do most every weekend and who, pray tell, would turn down an invitation from the grandparents for a day of fun? Both Eliza and Sophia told me they didn’t want to leave and this is all good news come summer and a temporary relief from school before the start of camp season. I would say the last weekend of Winter 2017 was well-spent.
What a blustery, blistery, and cold weekend. Someone told me that a cold front was moving from Siberia of all places down through Canada and toward us. I’ve never been to Siberia but I imagine that Friday evening’s weather was exactly how cold it must be there.
The kids are at this great age where they still believe in princesses, fairytales, and magic. Marveling and relishing this, we decided to start some new (to us) traditions like having the girls decorate a gingerbread house. We also baked snickerdoodle cookies—an experience that included a completely flour-covered kitchen, many giggles, and lots and lots of snacking too close to dinner.
We spent the rest of the weekend watching movies, decorating a new year’s tree (a tradition from my own childhood) and wrapping Hannukah presents. The highlight of the weekend, which also concluded it, was a visit to The Miracle on 13th Street where we marveled at a beautiful holiday oasis that seems to appear out of nowhere as you drive deep into South Philadelphia. Lovely.
We didn’t notice if it was cold outside when we were walking through this wonderland — we were too enchanted.
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Our friends came for brunch on Sunday and brought an amazing rendition of snickerdoodle pie. Baking cinnamon-infused cookie dough into crispy pie crust really is a no brainer. I saved the recipe and shall have to learn how to make it very, very well by practicing often. Brunch was a simple affair and, in addition to the snickerdoodle pie, included buttermilk pancakes, turkey meatballs that the girls have dubbed amazeballs, and vanilla-bean cheesecake (all homemade). The kids played together and the adults conversed and tried to keep up with the continuous pancake, juice, and meatball requests.
That was Sunday which we kept in line with the long weekend’s theme keeping things low-key and focusing on spending time with Sophia and Eliza. Saturday we took the girls out for chocolate croissants and
coffee steamed milks, saw the Comcast Center’s Holiday Spectacular, made sour cherry hand-pies, and made a super comforting roast chicken dinner.
Friday, for a real treat, we took the girls to the Please Touch Museum for a morning of play and discovery. We were there shortly after the museum opened and the girls didn’t skip a beat heading downstairs to the grocery store and hospital exhibits.
Before Friday, there was Thanksgiving which we spent with my family in Wilmington, Delaware having contributed a home-made cranberry pie with a streusel topping. The pie featured a home-made crust of which I am very proud of having gone as far as to blind bake it.
I had plenty of little fingers to help me measure out all the ingredients, stir the cranberries in the pot, and decorate the top with streusel.
Thanksgiving was just as we liked it — fairly small, warm, and delicious. It was a real treat to just kick back and relax.
In the end, even after all the other pictures featuring mouthwatering pies and glossy berries, this one (see above) is my favorite. It was taken using my phone and isn’t particularly well-framed but it conveys the very essence what our daily life is about — developing and nurturing a bond between Sophia and Eliza. Here is Sophia helping Eliza zip up her coat. She did this without us prompting simply because she wanted to help and to be the big sister. This Thanksgiving break was epic.