Saturday, December 22, 2012

She loves them...

...and they love her.

Before I had Clara, I knew it was going to be great for the boys to have a sister.  But I could not have guessed how it was going fill my heart to bursting.  How gloriously joyous I would feel watching them with her. 

Every day when Matthew gets home from school, he asks me what Clara and I did that day so he can talk to her about it.  "Oh!  You went to Target, baby?!  Was that fun?"  And when Jack is here with her in the afternoons, I put her in her Bumbo on the table, where he sits and colors or does crafts.  And he talks to her the whole time. "Do you like this color, Clay-a?" and he'll sing to her and talk to her and hold his art projects up for her approval.  And she just sits and watches, content.  I've come to refer to them as "your Matthew" and "your Jack." 

And she never lets them out of her sight.  If they're in the room, she's checking them out.  Sometimes I have to stop Jack and say, "Clara is looking at you; say hi to her."  She looks at them with such adoration, I almost can't take the fullness in my heart.

And her papa.  Good grief, she loves that guy.  Same thing. She adores him.  And he adores her.  Sometimes I will go on search for them, and find them laying on the bed in our room, talking.  Or I'll find her on his lap when he's watching TV or playing video games. 

How lucky is my little girl?  How lucky am I?

When I think back to all the apprehension I felt a year ago when I was first expecting her, I am sorry I wasted a minute worrying.  It reminds me to be patient, and to trust.  Because everything happens for a reason, at exactly the right time.  The love for this baby is absolute proof.  My cup runneth over. 

Friday, December 21, 2012

Sharing the Love: Butter Croissant Rolls

Cory says I'm the only one he knows who bakes their own dinner rolls.  Truth be told, I'm a bit of a bread snob.  I love homemade bread.  I got spoiled by my mom growing up.  And in the day of the breadmaker, it's just so easy!

This is my sister Amy's recipe.  I can never get them consistent in size, but that's part of their charm, I think.  The thing about homemade bread is because there are no kind of preservatives, it's really best the same day.  But if you wait until they reach room temperature and then freeze them, they'll taste fresh whenever you pull them out of your freezer!  Make these for your holiday dinner; you won't regret it.

7 oz warm milk
1 egg, room temperature
4 T room-temperature butter
2 3/4 c bread flour
1 tsp salt
2 T sugar
2 tsp yeast.

Put ingredients in your breadmaker according to its directions.  Run on dough cycle. When it's finished, roll into a 12 inch circle on a floured surface.  Cut with pizza cutter into triangles.  Amy does 12; I do 20.  (I cut it into quarters and then cut five slices out of each section).  Roll up wide edge to point.  Place point-down on a greased cookie sheet (I just line with parchment instead).  For Amy's size, bake at 350 for 25 minutes.  I've found that my size is perfect at 325 for 20 minutes.  Brush with melted butter.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Sharing the Love: Focaccia Breadsticks

A couple people have asked for this recipe.  Perfect weather for soup and warm breadsticks!

Foccacia Breadsticks
9 oz warm water
3 T olive oil
1 tsp minced garlic
3 c flour
2 tsp yeast
1 tsp salt
Garlic salt
Parmesan cheese

Add all ingredients according to your breadmaker instructions. Run on dough cycle. Lay flat on greased cookie sheet. Top with a little olive oil and sprinkle with garlic salt (and rosemary and/or parmesan cheese if you have it!). Cut into narrow strips with a cookie cutter. Bake at 400 for 20 - 25 minutes. Break apart and enjoy with soup!