Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Growing up my mother was the town's best baker. Although I grew up in a town of less than 200, that did not make her prize less earned. Whenever bake sales came around, or concession stands, people would call our house early to find out what Mom was baking. Her love of baking carried over to her daughter, who truly believes in the art of baking from scratch. Upon going to college, I was mortified and flabbergasted to realize that most mom's didn't make a 3 layer cake from scratch weekly. She is one of the reasons that I have such a fascination with 50s housewives. (Even though my mother always had a job.)
This past weekend part of my work load ended. I was the president of our history honor's society, and this weekend we had our annual banquet. Very fancy, good food, lots of awards and speeches. I got home Saturday night from the banquet, and needed to unwind. I turned, as would my mother, to baking. (Plus, I had to bake the birthday cake for our church's 4th Sunday luncheon.)
I turned to my "old reliable" cake recipe. Whenever in the past I wanted to impress others
with a good cake or needed to win brownie points with hubby, I have always made a chocolate-peanut butter cake that I learned to make at a Taste of Home Cooking School. Since entering graduate school, I have found that baking and cleaning are fabulous stress relievers. Its a fabulous disorder to have when you can't sleep and thus feel the need to fold laundry or wash dishes.
The cake turned out great, not a crumb left. (Much to dismay of hubby who really wanted another slice after church.) I did, however, cheat a tiny bit on the training/eating healthy and split a slice with hubby and Miss Mia. The cake, however, was well worth the extra workout time!!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Neglected Blog

Oh my poor neglected blog..April is always such a killer. Although I have still not found a camera, thanks to my laptop's cruel decision to die in the midst of my semester; I, being a history Ph.D student, had to invest in the computer and not the camera. So now I am saving once more for a new camera. I guess in the long run, this gives me more time to look through all the consumer reviews. I promise to return to this blog soon and post fabulous new tips, craft projects, and most importantly frugal finds as soon as this month has left me behind. (and most likely in the fetal position!)
But in case you're wondering, here is what the last two weeks have been like:
-Major wildfires in the small towns around Norman (Being in charge of all outreach for our small church, I organized 2 caravans of cars/trucks/UHauls to take everything we could get our hands on to the fire vicitms.)
-2 Major papers due. One on the British Monarchy and the other on the a prolific America West historian's bio/historiography
-1 very big Awards Banquet that must be planned, programs created, contracts signed..and a speech prepared (as I am the President)
-1 Language Proficency Exam looming over my head...studying fervently..must pass before I can take my Comprehensive Exams in the Fall
-4 church cleanings...this was our month to clean the church all month, prepare communion, and bake the birthday cake for the fourth Sunday luncheon
-10 billion loads of laundry (I think we must all be going through 7 outfits a day..or maybe the dog is wearing some around--the dirty clothes are breeding!)

But I promise to return soon..with pictures, better tips, and so much less stress!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Night on a Train

Confession: Hubby and I have never been away from our 16 month old daughter at the same time for an entire night. That was until this weekend.

I had a paper accepted to present at a history conference in Texas. It just happened to be in Lubbock this year and thus I scored free babysitters in my parents who were more than excited to keep Mia all by themselves. (And thus away from my eyes as they give her endless supply of candy!) Hubby had one more day of vacation to use before June and really wanted to go.

I get my conferences paid for due to my fellowship here at the history department, and wanted to find somewhere fun for us to stay. My hubby is such a little nerd that he actually subscribes to train enthusiast magazines, and thus I decided that we would stay in a Lubbock B&B that offers a converted caboose car as a room.

It was so much fun! They did a really great job of the renovation. We had our own shower and bathroom along with a queen bed, air conditioning, and a small living/eatery area. Along with getting to stay in the caboose, we got to see our dear friends, old professors, and of course eat yummy Mexican food!

When we got to my parents house we found most things still intact and no major sugar rushes. She really enjoyed helping her Pawpaw gather the chicken eggs! Every bird we see is now a chicken.

Now that we're back, life is back to warp speed. I am currently looking for a new sewing machine and digital camera. Any suggestions? = )