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!


Anonymous said...

I need pictures! If you've already made the apple crisp, I want a piece, but then you must get more apples, punch holes in them with a pencil and stuff them with crayons -- and take a picture! What a fun, busy, frazzle-filled day. Oh, and I want a bun and some beef and don't forget, I need a cinnamon bun. (PS thanks for the recipe) :)
Love, G-ma

Sarah said...

Okay, I came across your blog a while ago and check it once in a while but never wanted to comment because it might be weird for obvious reasons, but this post was just too cute! I had to say something. Thanks for the entertainment and the laughs, I like your blog :)

Caroline Harker said...

Oh my gosh that was absolutely HILARIOUS!!! You need to save it for your journal! Hope your buns turned out well!

The Taylors said...

Ah Meagan you make me laugh so much! Ben is a lucky guy!

Lahni said...

I love this, so funny and so true. I can sit around all day and the boys won't bother me until I actually try and get something done. It's like they have a radar that say "Mom's trying to be productive...must not let her accomplish anything!!"

Jewel said...

Awesome Meagan!!!! I needed a good laugh today!

the burnt daisy said...

ok I started to read this last week and couldn't even get past the title cuz of well ya know...., but i'm sure glad I came back to read it. It's so funny!! I can relate 100%! I have seriously considered writing out some of my crazy days, maybe one day I will cuz it sure makes you look back and laugh eh? Yes making buns may be a thing of the past, or just at nap time maybe? ;)

the burnt daisy said...

I also didn't realize i'm still under my business blog :) so it's Mindy...if you couldn't figure that out lol