Mar 29, 2009


Today is Jonathan's 25th birthday. He recently joined CorporateColor in commercial sales and is off to a great start.

Happy Birthday. We love you.

Mar 22, 2009

Countdown to Europe begins

Our "to-do" list is getting shorter and excitement is building as we continue to prepare for our trip overseas coming up in less than two weeks. Our taxes are done and e-filed thanks to turbo tax, the credit card companies have been notified of potential charges from Spain and France, necessary items of clothing and technology have been bought, and a reservation at Camp Bow Wow has been made for Molly.

Our bags aren't packed yet but we are making lists. As we have done on previous trips to Europe, we are packing light and are each taking one carry-on piece of luggage, plus a small shoulder bag. We just do a little hand laundry in the hotel sink every couple of days during our travels and we are good to go.

This afternoon was very pleasant so we both went for a walk over in the park with Molly. This was also a test to see how John's foot would do, as it's been bothering him lately with a bit of swelling and occasional pain. It doesn't seem to be any worse after our 40 minute walk so that's good.

He's taking an anti-inflammatory and hoping that will take care of it. If it isn't better in a couple of days he will have to see the doctor. This is the same foot he fractured a couple of years ago.

The weather has been mild the last couple of days and Spring is definitely in the air. We even saw a few golfers in the adjacent golf course while we were walking; a sure sign of Spring in Michigan.

Mar 17, 2009

Irish Soda Bread with Dried Cherries

Bread is fun to make and it's even more fun to eat. I don't eat bread all that often, but when I do I try to choose whole wheat or whole grain.

Last night I had Irish Soda Bread on my mind. Must be my (very small amount of ) Irish genes were coming to the surface on this St. Patricks Day. This recipe uses whole wheat flour that is soaked overnight and it is also sugar free. Although I did sprinkle a small amount of sugar on the top of each loaf before baking (but this step could be omitted).

As I sometimes do with recipes, I substituted a few of the ingredients and used dried cherries and nuts instead of raisins, and my version is not dairy free. This makes a very untraditional version of Irish Soda Bread but we like cherries and nuts. Any type of dried fruit or nut would work just as well.

Irish Soda Bread with Dried Cherries

4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup buttermilk (this was leftover from making butter)
2 Tbs apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup nuts, coarsely chopped
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp caraway seeds, sprinkle on top (optional)
1-1 1/2 tsp organic cane sugar, sprinkle on top (optional)

The day before baking , add cider to the milks and let set for about 5 minutes. In large bowl, mix the flour, and oil together with a pastry cutter until flour is crumbly and pea size. Add the oats and milk/cider combination. Cover well and leave on the counter overnight.

The next day - preheat oven to 350 . In a small bowl combine the cherries, nuts, salt, and baking soda.

Place dough on board and press out fairly flat.

Pour cherry/nut mixture on top

Fold dough in half over top of cherry mixture. Press flat

Continue folding and pressing until fruits and nuts are mixed in.

Round the dough into a ball and cut ball in half

Form each ball into a 2 1/2 inch thick round.

Cut an X on top

Place rounds on parchment paper lined cookie sheet

Press caraway seeds on top and sprinkle with sugar, if using.

Bake for 45 - 50 minutes. Cool on cooling racks. Cut into wedges.

Mar 11, 2009


Today is our granddaughter Mia's 3rd birthday.

Happy Birthday Mia! We hope you have a fun tea party, we love you !!