Where Did November Go?

So…uh, what happened to November folks??  I don’t really know where to begin because the post I’ve been thinking about posting is irrelevant seeing as how Halloween is long over and gone.  So just imagine, I walked around my neighborhood and took pictures of the decorations people put up and some of them were pretty cool.  A lot of people around here did some sort of decorations even if it was minimal.  One of my favorites was a ginormous spider a guy built out of PCP pipe with glowing green fangs and put up in the front yard.  I’d post the pics but they didn’t turn out all that well now that I’m looking back at them.  We even decorated our porch which was a cross between nice harvest with pumpkins and hay bales and typical Halloween with spider webs and ghosts.  I even tried to make this:

It didn’t quite turn out exactly like this but good enough.  Another reason I’m not posting pictures is because my computer is going through a freak out period.  I just got it a few months ago and there’s already some sort of hardware glitch.  Lovely.  I’ve talked to tech support on two separate occasions and all I’m wanting them to do is send me a box to put my computer in so I can send it to be repaired.  It is now a month after my initial call and I still don’t have a box.  Grrr.  I will be making yet another call tomorrow and may have to ask to be transferred to their complaints department or something.  It’s frustrating and annoying.  And I’m annoyed that I have to talk to some guy in India who I can’t understand and who can’t understand me.  Double Grrr.

With the semester coming to an end I’ve been bombarded with papers, projects, assignments, etc.  The good thing is I’m starting to see the end.  Whoo hoo!  We had family in for Thanksgiving which was fun.  I was a cooking fool last weekend.  I made a big dinner the night before then cooked the turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, and made four pumpkin pies.  I love pumpkin pie.  All the cooking is just the warm up for the Christmas desserts that need to be made.  Last year I baked a little over 400 cookies, 5 loaves of bread, three batches of fudge, 2 batches of cream cheese brownie bars, 2 or 3 batches of homemade oreo cake/cookies, and tried divinity which I ended up being sidelined for because that’s really hard to make.  Maybe this year.  Speaking of the Christmas season, all the holiday movies have started up which I’m apparently a sucker for.  So odd because ordinarily I can’t stand Lifetime or Hallmark but sprinkle in Christmas and I can’t turn it off.  Go figure.

Well for some stupid reason I woke up at 3:45 this morning and couldn’t go back to sleep.  I hate that.  So I”m going to go attempt to do that now.  But I’m going to leave you with what I discovered making a web outside my window:

Ok, ok so it wasn’t really a goliath birdeating tarantula out there but it may as well have been.  It was totally big and creepy.  Well, pleasant dreams!

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Better than last year??

I was talking to my brother tonight and realized that I can’t remember January – April of this year.  I know I wasn’t in school or working but for the life of me I can’t remember what I WAS doing.  I just honestly can’t remember.  I looked back through my posts but they weren’t much help so I guess I look forward to making this year even better.  Although better from what I’m not entirely sure.  And just for a little bragging rights, last week I baked 400 cookies (3 different kinds), 5 loaves of zucchini bread, 4 batches of fudge, dipped 70 pretzel sticks in chocolate and nuts, made a pan of cream cheese cookies brownies, and successfully experimented in making homemade peppermint oreo cookies.  It was a busy three days and I should have taken a picture but trust me when I say it tasted and smelled fantastic.

Divinity

Tonight I took my baking to a new level.  Usually a new level would be like going from opening a box of Little Debbie Ho Ho’s to making microwavable brownies (kidding.  I’ve never made brownies in a microwave before.  There’s something not quite right about making them that way.)

But tonight for the first time, I made divinity.  Personally I think the stuff is disgusting but I have to say I was pretty proud of myself.  I’m sure there’s more baking to come but so far this week I’ve made over 200 Christmas sugar cookies, a couple batches of fudge, and divinity.  Talk about a lot of sugar!

Christmas Cookies

I went ahead and got a jump start on the holiday baking this year and spent the whole weekend making cookies and fudge.  And let me tell you, I’m glad it’s over.  I love the idea of making goodies for people.  I love giving them away.  I don’t even mind the actual baking.  But I HATE the decorating.  So tedious and boring.  Decorating 5 dozen cookies takes longer than I would like and I was so grateful fudge only takes 10 minutes.  I had planned to take pictures of  different stages of the baking process but of course, I completely forgot until the end when I was starting to arrange the plates.  But don’t they look good?  I hope they tasted as good as they looked!

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Yummy!

Friday I came across a recipe from My Tiny Kingdom that I thought I would test out.  I don’t know what came over me because I have no interest in cooking/baking if the food doesn’t come out of a bag, box, or can.  And even then I would say I’m more of a “heater” than a cook.  But the recipe sounded so easy that I thought even I can’t mess that up too badly.  Unfortunately the photoshop gods still hate me, that’s why I could only get thumbnails uploaded.

s5030531.jpg s5030533.jpg   The first pic is pre-baked and the second is after.  I realize it doesn’t look like it should be in a magazine but this was my first time making it.    Besides the taste is all that really matters…and it tasted delicious!