Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Spring Breakers

I'm on holidays.

I have from Good Friday until March 31 off.  Go back for Friday due to work commitments and then off for the weekend.  Not half bad.

It's been relaxing. Without any hockey, we have lots of free time which is nice.   Saturday afternoon we went out to visit Brad's parents for Easter.  I got to see my nephews whom I adore so that was great.

Came home Saturday night and after the boys went to bed, I started prepping for the big egg hunt.  It was fun.  The boys do not believe in the Easter Bunny at all.  However, they do believe in chocolate.
I hid the eggs everywhere.  In the cabinets, drawers, fridge, washer and dryer, plants... boys had an awesome time.

When I was a kid whenever it was a holiday (Easter, Christmas etc), my Dad would make his signature breakfast, a giant apple pancake. It's kind of like a cross between a crepe and a pancake.  You cook it in a cast iron skillet and then bake it in the oven.  It is topped with apples, cinnamon, brown sugar and butter.  It's breakfast nirvana.

So my game plan that morning was to make it for the boys.  But that fell flat when I realized the boys had eaten all of my eggs.  Wonderful.  I have to hide food if I want it to last.

Alright... ok.... I got this.  I went deep in the back of my pantry and found some pancake mix.  Not ideal for this dish, but I thought I'd improvise and make a salted caramel apple sauce to go over the pancakes.But despite my best intentions, my first mistake was thinking that I could multi-task the cooking of this breakfast.

I googled a recipe for caramel sauce.  Water and sugar... boil until turns a caramel color (following the explicit instructions not to stir) and then add butter and vanilla.  Seemed simple enough. I got out the sugar and water and was off to the races.

I rifled through the fridge and found some leftover potatoes and decided to make that into potato pancake hashbrowns.  I added some spices, grated cheese, flour and an egg and grilled them in a cast iron.  In another pan, I had some bacon going.   In that moment I was the living embodiment of Martha Stewart.

While I had the potatoes hashbrowning (not really a word, but whatever, I want it to be, so change approved) I started on the apple pancakes.

I had been keeping a close eye on the caramel sauce which was still clear and bubbling away.    It was about this moment that Logan came into the kitchen chatting away about our plans for the day, his homework, easter candy, political opinions on Trump (he hates him), his thoughts on the guy who spent a year in space.  Honestly, this kid talks non stop.  I talk a lot, so if I think you talk too much, it's an issue.

I never want him to think I am not listening, so I did my best to pay attention all the while watching the hashbrowning, pancaking, baconing and carameling.

I noticed that the caramel sauce had just begun to turn a light golden so I knew I had to watch it.  But it was at that moment that my pancakes decided to start getting too brown and started to burn.  I had to turn my attention to that crisis only to turn back to my sauce and realize I had missed my window.

The kitchen was now filled with the aroma of burnt sugar.  I was quite disheartened, but Brad simply said "So make another batch".   It's pretty funny that given my disappointment, it hadn't occurred to me to try again.

I was annoyed with that recipe so I decided to try another one that is brown sugar, light corn syrup and butter.  You boil it for awhile and then add some baking soda to puff it up.  It's the same sauce I use for caramel popcorn and that always turns out great, so it seemed like a good solution to my pancake sauce problem.

Note - caramel popcorn syrup does not transition well into pancake topping.  Just FYI.

The boys knew I had worked hard on it, so they didn't complain, but it was kinda gross.  Have you ever tasted something that had too much baking soda in it?  It's bitter and almost tastes like it is burning your tongue.  Vile.

I wasn't about to make them eat it, so we scrapped that batch and just had regular pancakes.  On a positive note, the potato pancakes, bacon and fruit salad were good. Although it takes a special kind of chef to mess up a fruit salad so I can't be too proud of myself.

Monday was a quiet day, I met my cousin/sister (because I think of her as a sister)  Jill for breakfast.  It's always great to sit down and talk with her.  She's one of the most supportive, kind people I am lucky enough to have in my life.

After breakfast at Oakwood (soooooooooooo good), she gave me and the boys a lift to the mall.  The boys have been saving their allowance money to buy this video game.  With the Easter gifts that they got from their grandparents, if they pooled their money, they had enough to buy it.

We went to EB games in the mall, but the game was sold out.  Nuts.  We tried Walmart, but they were sold out too.

I called another EB games store and they had one left in stock.  I asked them to put it on hold and texted Brad to pick it up on the way home.  Hurrah.  It was one of the first times that I have seen the boys really working together for a common goal.  Brought some joy to my cold dark heart.

Once Brad got home, the errand running began.  See I was supposed to get up at 5 am and drive Brad to work so that I would have the truck for the day.  I have now attempted this two days in a row and I can tell you with 100% certainty that I was not meant to get up at that hour.  It's in my DNA.  People who can should be studied for scientific purposes.

Logan went with me on my errand running.  I had to run to the bank and make an appointment because I am opening bank accounts for the boys.  Instead of giving them cash for their allowance which then goes towards pizza and garbage at the school canteen, we are going to transfer their allowance into their personal bank account. This way they can learn the concept of saving for something.  Oh, I'm so clever.

** I hope that it goes without saying that I am being sarcastic here, but just in case, let this sentence stand in place of a sarcasm sign.

I then had a few things to pick up at Canadian Tire and return an over the door basketball net to Walmart.  I headed over to the Canadian Tire on Fermor.  As we arrived at the store, Logan piped up and said, "Why don't we just return the net here?".  I was just about to tell him that you can't just return something anywhere, when I looked up and saw a Walmart.

Apparently the Target store that had closed some months back has been taken over by Walmart now.  That is brand new information!  It also means I can go to this one instead of the insanity of the one at the mall.  Generally as a rule, I try to avoid Walmart whenever possible, but sometimes that's where you have to go.  This new Walmart looks better than the mall version because it uses the Target furnishings which tend to be a little bit nicer than your standard Walmart.  Score.

That's brings us to now, Tuesday morning at 12:32 pm (which is still morning in the land of me on holidays), drinking coffee in pajamas.  Decadent.

At some point this morning, I am going to persuade my coffee drinking, pajama wearing backside to go for a run or some form of exercise, but for now my only plan is to sip this coffee and look at the sun beaming into my living room.


Sham Monk said...

This is a great place, it’s superb that the people from venues in Los Angeles recognize that the holiday party is the time to celebrate not only the year’s achievements, but the talent and teamwork that made those achievements possible.

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