It’s been a while since I’ve been able to post. It’s been a really super busy week. Not that I’ve stopped cooking, but I have had a lot less time to write. Shortly before my most recent post, we were contacted by one of our good friends. There was a conference up here in the Bay area that he wanted to go to. He had planned on staying in a hotel, but unfortunately the person he was planning on going with had come down with Swine Flu, and he was wondering if he could stay here instead. So thus began the massive clearing out of the front bedroom, which had become a complete dumping ground for all boxes and other things that we didn’t really have a place for yet. We didn’t really solve any problems with this exodus, since now we have the garage completely packed with boxes instead of the front bedroom – but atleast we were able to offer a bed, a dresser and a desk instead of the couch.
Of course, before we could move stuff from the front bedroom in to the garage, we had to do a massive cleaning out of the garage, which had basically been a mess of tools and paint cans strewn all over the place. Astonishingly, once it was cleaned up we realized the garage wasn’t as full as we’d thought – and by keeping the boxes confined in an orderly fashion, the garage is still marginally useable – which is nice. When our guest goes home, we’ll be able to work on finishing up projects that were dependent on the garage being straightened up.
It’s also the last week before Miss Thing goes to visit family for three weeks, which makes the timing of the visit a little unfortunate, but we’re managing to find a balance with it, so it’s not too bad. But because she’s leaving soon, I’ve been trying to spend more time hanging out with her. We went out on an all day shopping excursion yesterday and had a lot of fun. I showed her the joys of Marshalls. Unfortunately we didn’t get to stay quite as long as I might have liked, since she had an activity to go to in the evening, but afterwards she was like “Can we go back tomorrow?”. Which is really funny when you know that every time I have come back from Marshalls recently, she’s been pretty foul tempered about it. “Why do you go there? It’s so annoying!” When I called her on it though, she was like “Well, that was before I knew they sold such good stuff!”<insert eyeroll here>
Anyhow, aside from shopping excursions, there was also Father’s Day on Sunday, the Midsummer’s Eve ritual that I hosted on Friday for my sisters, and on Friday morning we camped out all morning at the Apple Store to get the new iphones. (Which was quite the experience, let me tell you). We have been holding off on buying new phones for a while now, and the iphone was a contender – we just didn’t really want to switch from Verizon. In the last couple of months our phones had taken a turn for the worse, as battery life kept decreasing until finally it would die after only a couple of minutes. After looking at available options for smart phones, we finally decided on the iphone. It wasn’t really my first choice – my old phone was the enV from LG and I loved, loved, loved my flip-out keyboard, but all the smart phones currently available were either touch screen, or they had itty-bitty keyboards, or they were windows mobile (which Mr. Man was adamantly against) – so iphones it was.
After a few days of using it, I am pretty happy with it – I miss my keyboard, but not quite as much as I thought I would, and all the cool apps make up for it… a little. Mr. Man has been way more app-junky than I have, (Urinal Test, anyone?) Being able to easily check my email, twitter and facebook any time the fancy strikes me is pretty awesome. Miss Thing hasn’t really progressed much beyond the unlimited text we added to our plan (she used over 600 texts the first night!), but she’s pretty stoked about it too. I told her that now she has absolutely no excuse for not staying in touch during her trip, since she can email, text, and call us. Like any teen, she’s less than forthcoming about communicating with the ‘rentals when traveling.
So, yeah – it’s been a wild and crazy ride the last week, and the next few days don’t really promise to be much better. Miss Thing flies out on Friday, and shortly after I get back from that I will need to meander over to Walnut Creek for the monthly DVP Meet & Greet. I’ve been stockpiling veggies more than I’d like, too – with as much as it’s been going on, it’s been hard to get through everything in my weekly box from FFTY. (Don’t talk to me about weekly updates… I’m not going to be upset that I haven’t been able to do them. Really. I’m not. Not at all. <cry>)
Oh – and after our friend leaves, we’re supposed to pull everything out of Miss Thing’s room and install Crown moulding – but given the craziness lately, I’m not sure whether that will actually get done or not. We might wait until August when we get back. We’ll see though. Perhaps we’ll get über motivated. But anyways, I made these muffins for the first time atleast a week ago now, but I’ve actually made them a couple of times since. They’re super easy and adapt pretty well to almost any fruit. I made a batch with strawberries soon after these and they were also excellent.
I used one of Mark Bittman‘s Muffin Recipe variations from “How to Cook Everything” as a jumping off point. It’s a nice book for quick, basic recipes – and I’ve found myself thumbing through it occassionaly when I need a recipe to start from. I tinkered around with it a little bit – but overall, it didn’t really need much. I mean, how many times do you really need to invent the wheel? You know – speaking of muffins, I might need to make another batch. Soon.
- 1 tbs Safflower Oil
- 2 cups Flour
- 1 and 1/4 cups Sour Cream
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Kosher Salt
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 2 tbs Milk
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 1 cup Fresh Blueberries
- Preheat oven to 375°
- Grease a 12 cup muffin pan
- In a bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder
- In a seperate bowl, beat together the sour cream, egg, oil and vanilla
- Form a well in the center of the flour mixture, and pour the liquid mixture in to the flour mixture
- Gently fold together until just moistened (do not overmix). Batter will be lumpy, but if muffin batter is dry, add just enough of the milk to moisten
- Gently fold in blueberries
- Spoon batter in to muffin pan
- Bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden and toothpick inserted in to center of a muffin comes out clean
- Cool on rack for 10 minutes, or until cool enough to not burn your fingers.