Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Baking - with a toddler and a Husband

Well at least my Toddler and my Husband. Man oh man oh man...where do I start?

So this morning I decided maybe I would make some buns....delicious buns. And while I was making buns, I'd also make some BBQ beef to go on the buns for dinner as well as some cinnamon buns. Not such a big deal. The buns are simple, the beef just goes in the crock pot all day, and the Cinnamon buns just take a little more time to roll out and yummify (i.e. add sugar!!!).

Anyway, I should have sensed it wasn't my day to bake when Ben and Hailey were both pulling at me to help them with something from the second I pulled out the flour. The day went like this:

Hailey wants a cookie...and Ben wants me to do some work for the business. So, I try to tend to them both while adding ingredients. No biggie, us moms can multi task like you wouldn't believe. I distract Hailey with some toys, and I agree to help Ben and send off some quotes for a job he wants to work on, and I measure away.

1 cup of sugar
4 eggs
4 cups flour
3 1/2 cups HOT water
1 T salt

and Mix

Then Ben comes to me with the numbers he wants on the quote and a list of things to add as well. I'm still multitasking and trying to make a yeast mixture to add to the other bunch of ingredients that are mixing away while listening to the list of numbers he has for me.

3 T yeast
1/2 cup water
1 tsp honey

Then as I'm letting that sit and work it's magic, Hailey comes and paws at me some more...asking for both a show on tv and some music to dance to. So I turn the music on...which means she then asks for a tu-tu, which I get her. While I'm running down the stairs to get the tu-tu, Ben asks me to send the quotes off in the next 15 minutes because that's what he'd promised. Uh...ok. Shouldn't be a problem. I just need to add the yeast to the other mixture that's been mixing away in the KitchenAid for...uh the last 10 minutes. And then add the rest of the flour. So I do just that...and then start adding flour.

1 cup
2 cups
3 cups
4 cups
and...oops I'm out of flour.

I run down stairs and grab some more. Oops...I'm out down there too. So I run upstairs to find a twirling Hailey and an anxious Ben. Hailey wants me to dance with her, and Ben reminds me that I now have 12 minutes to get the quotes out. Ok...I do a little twirl to please Hailey and promise Ben that he can rely on me. He leaves for work, I pack Hailey up, in her pj's and all, throw my hair in a ponytail and run out the door to buy some more flour. I have 11 minutes to get to the store, buy the flour, add it to my already rising/half finished dough and send off the quotes I promised.

The store is a success...there's flour! And some really cute rubber boots for Hailey that I must have - but I don't buy. I may have spent a bit too much time there deciding whether to buy the boots or not. But it's ok, the yeast is fresh and can handle the extra work it's doing...and there shouldn't be too much to do for the quotes. So I walk in the door, put Hailey down, open the new bag of flour and start scooping away.

5 Cups
6 Cups
7 Cups

and done...the dough looks good. Not too tough, and not too sticky. I put it in the greased bowl I have set aside, cover it and leave it to rise. I head to the laptop to start on the quotes and remember I haven't put the beef on to cook...ok that should take just a minute. Which it does....except for the whole disinfecting the entire kitchen afterwards. You know, raw beef...ugh.

Mental check list: Kitchen clean. Dough rising...wait, dough rising?? I suddenly remember that I forgot to add:

1 cup oil

to the original mixture. Oops. So out comes the dough...and after a quick phone call to my mom for advice, I start hand kneading the oil into the dough. Ugh. 10 minutes later, I'm done.

Ok. Kitchen half clean, dough rising, beef cooking, Quotes waiting, Hailey....wait where's Hailey? I start looking for her and instantly find her in the living room, she's found the flour and the measuring cups and spread the flour EVERYWHERE!! Yikes. I deal with the mischievous Hailey and turn on a show for her. Ah TV - Sometimes that's all I've got up my sleeve. I finally sit down at the laptop to work on my quotes. But of course I have to check my Facebook. I quickly discover that my cousin is on and an old friend from back in the day. I just have to say hi! So I do, and we start chatting. And time just sort of passes. And then suddenly I get a call from Ben asking me where the quotes are...uh right-e-o. I'm on that. I quickly say bye to my chatting friends, and get to the quotes. I'm only 45 minutes late. No biggie. So, I type away, call Ben a million times to confirm all the things he went over with me earlier - when I was forgetting to add ingredients to the dough (and obviously not listening to him). After almost 45 minutes of typing, I'm done. The quotes are done, they've been sent off and things are looking good.

I take 5 minutes to breathe, when I suddenly realize that the dough has been rising for...oh, and hour and a half. Yikes. I run upstairs only to find the biggest bowl of dough ever. I punch it down (hoping that I haven't used up all the rising ability of the yeast) and start shaping buns. 30 buns into the process I look at the clock and realize that it's lunch time and I suddenly understand why Hailey's pawing at me again. Thank goodness for leftover mac and cheese. I throw some in a bowl, warm it up, and sit Hailey down for lunch. While she's happily distracted I finish making the buns...30 more and a dozen cinnamon buns as well.

I cover all million pans of buns and leave them to rise again. Hailey's done lunch and is wanting me to play with her, so I do for a half hour and then I set her up with some crayons and paper and HOPE that she decides to colour on the paper. She sits quietly and colours while I clean the kitchen up...and all the flour spread throughout the house.

Mental Check list: Quotes done - finally, Clean kitchen - again, dough rising - again, and Hailey playing quietly...I hope.

I decide to look over to where Hailey is 'colouring' only to notice that she has not only found a pencil, but also the apples which were so temptingly sitting right in front of her. Being the creative little girls she is, she has managed to poke holes in the apples with her pencil and then stuff the apples with her crayons. LOVELY. Just lovely.

So, I clean the crayons up, think about what to do with the apples and start to get Hailey ready for her nap. I get her changed and ready and then decide to throw the buns in the oven while I'm putting her down. I take the cover off the first pan...perfect; pan two....perfect; and then pan three...uh, oops I forgot the wet the towel covering the buns and now the buns are stuck - completely stuck to the towel. If I peel the towel off it will flatten the buns and they'll need to rise again. At this point though, I'm sure there's no rise left in the yeast. So I give up, I peel the towel off and throw the flat buns into the oven - hoping for a miracle.

I run up to put Hailey down for her nap, and come down to check on the buns. They look ok. not great but ok. Edible at least. The beef's still cooking away, the kitchen is clean, Hailey's taken care of, the apples are ready for apple crisp now, the quotes are done, and I can finally sit back and relax. And I do.

And here I am now, reflecting on why I never get anything done around here...I think I have an answer. The next time Ben asks what I actually do all day, I'll print this off and show him. And the next time I'm at the store and contemplating buying buns, I'll just do it. Sometimes it's just not worth the hassle. And now I'm really wondering how I'm going to handle another kid. We'll have to see. On a positive note - I've now written the bun recipe out...give it a try!

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Potty Training?

I've been thinking a lot about potty training and how Hailey is sooooo not ready yet! She's just NOT even interested...and that's fine with me. She's not even two yet! But, I do think we're making progress as far as the 'being comfortable with the toilet' thing goes.

Wouldn't you say?? In fact, she may love this toilet a bit too much! Don't worry it was a brand new toilet...not even installed yet (which would explain why it's in the middle of the living room); so it was clean. It is now nicely situated in our basement bathroom though, and she is no longer allowed to play in it.

Besides not potty training Hailey, we have been working on teaching her how to smile for the camera. This is the best we could get:
I may be biased...but that's pretty cute.
So, last week was just gorgeous up here...for March that is. It wasn't summer weather (well depending on what kind of summer day we're talking about); but it was 'melt all the snow and splash in puddles' kind of weather. So we took a little trip to the park. Hailey wasn't too sure about me pushing her on the swing at first.

But once I let go, she LOVED it!
We also so lots of 'a-payz' (Airplanes) in the sky. Did you know that airplanes say Choo-choo? I didn't, but Hailey's pretty sure of it.
But mostly we spent the entire afternoon splashing in every single puddle in sight. Trust me, we didn't miss a single one.
And finally, is this not the face of a Guilty child?? A child who found the Cake Mom made and just started mowing down on it?? It is. That's my sneaky child. Gotta love her!
Oh right...I can't forget to add this picture of me from last week - before my eventful fall down the stairs (which I'm still recovering from ...but doing better). Anyway, I think I'm about 23 weeks in this picture. Like the cheesy smile??

So that's it. Nothing - I repeat nothing exciting has happened in my home in the last week. I've done a LOT of standing because the sitting thing just hasn't gone over that well. I've done a lot of sleeping and eating. So the weight's packin' on that's for sure. Hailey's been cute as ever. So although my home is boring, there's been lots of excitement in the family! My brother and is wife had a beautiful little girl this week. Oh she is going to be spoiled! She's an absolute doll!

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Wipe out...

So last week when we got our new carpet in our basement, I was bragging about how soft and luxurious it was...which obviously led to my mom warning me that I needed to be careful on the stairs. Her reasoning is that the carpet is soooo soft that I may not notice the edge of the step and slip - and of course because of my ever expanding belly, I can't see the stairs any more and my balance is off. Well...like all good daughters do, I immediately dismissed my moms warning and filed it away with other crazy warning she's given - like don't put your head outside the car window because it might get chopped off...or a pencil will stab you in the eye or something crazy. And then like all good daughters eventually do, I learned that my mom was right (not about the pencil in the eye thing - at least not yet).

BUT....I wiped out big time on the stairs on Friday -resulting in a good hour of crying, a sleepless night and a wonderful little invalid ring to sit on. LOVELY. So the good things first - I landed on my tail bone and nothing else - so things are going to be ok. It's just a useless bunch of pain. Another good thing - it happened on Friday, meaning that Ben was home all weekend to help with Hailey. And my parents were able to come out and help on Saturday too!

The bad things?? I crushed my tailbone 13 years ago in a little skiing mishap...which means I had to have some very special luck to hurt whatever tiny fragment of it is left. And boy does it hurt! Another bad thing?? Combine a broken/bruised tailbone with 'Diastasis symphysis pubis' and you're in serious pain! I just got diagnosed with premature separation of my pubic bone last week - which basically means I can't sit, or laydown or walk without pain. And now because of my tailbone, I really can't sit, or laydown or walk without pain.

So it's all pretty funny though - what are the odds? I guess when you consider who I am and the 'special' luck I've had all my life, I should have known that something dumb like this would happen. I'm really not complaining though - I'm just laughing at myself. Because what's not to laugh about when you picture me sliding down the stairs?? I can guarantee it was funny to see!

Anyway, I just had to share, because most likely I'm going to take a bit of a break from this little blog because sitting for more then....well any amount of time hurts too much. So I've got to limit my down time to when I really really need it, like at night when I should be asleep! So I'll be back...soon.