Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Skating Superstar

My school had a skating party on Sunday. I went to see my students, and took Raegan along, since she could skate for free. This was her second time skating (we went in December for a church party). As soon as we got there, she asked for cake (because at church they gave us cupcakes after we skated). I thought that was pretty smart of her to remember that from over two months ago. The child's memory is insane!

Raegan wasn't nearly as nervous about it this time. After our second or third time around, she shook me off and said, "I do it Mama" and took off by herself. I hovered really close for awhile, but she never did fall, so I took some video on my iPod of her skating. The quality is kind of crappy, but ah well.

7th Grade Winter Band Concert

Zane's late winter band concert was last night. His band did a fantastic job. Raegan also did an awesome job of sitting and listening through the majority of the concert. (We have to sit through about 40 minutes worth until Zane's grade is finished with their pieces. For a two year old, that's pretty good!)

This one cuts off before the end of the song because I ran out of memory on my camera. I should try deleting pictures every once in a while, huh?

Before the concert

My cheese monkeys!

Again, with the excess cheese..... :)

Intently watching

Random shots of Zane leaving the stage

Thursday, February 16, 2012


Man, I am getting awful at keeping my blog up. Awful. Partially because I'm so busy with work/Raegan/chores/life, and partially because Raegan isn't changing every day anymore. There's not as much to report on. Although I keep thinking that I need to note the little things, because someday I can look back and remember "Oh yeah, she used to do that!" So here's some of the little things she's been doing lately.

Raegan is up to naming seven letters now: A, E, O, Z, H, G, and R. Sometimes she will point out K and I, but those aren't consistent yet. E is still her favorite letter, and anytime I wear a shirt that has an E on it, she immediately points it out. (It's *her* E, by the way.) The other day she shocked Luke. He asked her what planet she was from when she was being silly, and she said "Jupiter!" They've been learning about the planets at child care for the last month or so, and now if you ask her what planets are, she will say, "Mercury Venus, Earth, Mars." It's pretty awesome. She's a sponge - she just soaks up and remembers everything.

Raegan is definitely testing limits and boundaries right now. Two has been kind of rough, and I'm hoping that she'll start to outgrow this stage pretty soon. She growls and sticks her tongue out when she's mad about something, which is pretty frequent these days. I swear I hear "I'm mad" at least 5 times a day. And while I'm all for her recognizing her feelings, her way of expressing them just really isn't flying in our house. She's been taking a lot of moments to breathe and calm down in her room, and she's slowly figuring out what's what.

Raegan still adores singing and dancing. We're debating putting her in dance next fall, since she will be old enough. I don't want anything where they take it too seriously (no Dance Mom here!) but I think it would be fun for her. I keep meaning to enroll her in that Mom and Me gymnastics class through Parks and Rec, but it just seems like I never have time. Raegan has been singing a lot of "medleys" lately, where she starts with one song and segways into another. It's pretty funny to hear, especially since sometimes they go together pretty well. The other day she was doing "Santa Clause is Coming to Town" and "O Christmas Tree". Too cute.

Here's a couple random pictures from my iPod:

Enjoying Oreos that Granny and Papa bought her


Bathtime always makes Raegan so happy!

Drawing with sidewalk chalk on one of the many mild days we've had this winter!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Girl Scout Cookie Recipe!

I've been on a major baking kick for the last month or so. Not only have I been trying out some new baked goods recipes, I've also been trying some new main dishes too. I wasn't too thrilled with my chicken pot pie, but I was really pleased with the chicken fajitas I made last weekend. You win some, you lose some I guess. Here's the recipe for the fake Caramel deLite Girl Scout cookies that I made a couple weekends ago. They're really good, but they are very time intensive. I probably won't make them very often. :)

Caramel deLites
recipe from Once Upon a Plate

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. vanilla extract
up to 2 T. milk

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cream together butter and sugar in large bowl. Mix in flour, baking powder and salt at a low speed. Next, add in vanilla and milk. Only add in enough milk to make the dough come together without being too sticky. Roll dough out in 2 or 3 batch between two sheets of parchment paper, to about 1/4 inch thick. Use a 1 1/2 inch round cookie cutter to cut out the rounds, then place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Using a large round piping tip (like for frosting), cut a hole in the middle of each cookie. Bake cookies 10-12 minutes, until cookies are lightly golden brown around the edges. Cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet, allowing them to firm up, before transferring them to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.

3 cups shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
12 ounces chewy caramels
1/4 t. salt
8 ounces dark or semisweet chocolate (chocolate chips will work also)

Preheat oven to 300 F. Spread coconut evenly onto a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, stirring every five minutes to prevent burning. Cool on baking sheet, stirring occasionally.

Unwrap caramels and place in a large microwave safe bowl with milk and salt. Cook on high 3-4 minutes, stopping every so often to stir caramels. When smooth, fold in toasted coconut with a spatula. Use the spatula to spread the topping onto the cooled cookies, using about 2-3 tablespoons per cookie. If the topping starts to harden up, stick it in the microwave briefly to soften it up again.

While the coconut topping is setting up, melt the chocolate in the microwave for about 45 seconds, stirring frequently to prevent scorching. Dip the bottom of each cookie into the chocolate and set onto a new parchment sheet. Transfer all remaining chocolate into a piping bag and drizzle finished cookies. (You may need to melt a little more chocolate for this part.) Let chocolate set completely before peeling them off the parchment paper and storing in an airtight container. (Mine took overnight to completely harden up, but it could just be the humidity or whatever in my house?)

Makes 3 /12 to 4 dozen cookies.