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Pumpkins One, Two, and Three (and Me)

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Entries in book love (3)

Friday
Sep252009

Homemade hot chocolate mix.

As consistent cooler weather is, hopefully, right around the corner, it's time to make up my favorite hot chocolate mix to keep on hand in the pantry.  After trying several recipes, I've settled on Alton Brown's.  I'm sort of obsessed with him.  I love science so it's no surprise that he's my man--he encourages you to learn techniques rather than blindly following a recipe.  Both of his cookbooks, I'm Just Here for the Food and I'm Just Here for More Food...Baking, get weekly workouts around here.  

Alton Brown's Hot Chocolate Mix

**This mix works very well so I usually double the recipe--I think the corn starch is the secret ingredient.

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup cocoa (Dutch-process preferred--I like Trader Joe's or  Ghirardelli)
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper, or more to taste (sometimes I do cinnamon)

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and incorporate evenly.

To enjoy, add about 4 Tbl of mix per cup of very hot water or milk (I like hot milk to make it richer). 

The mix will keep indefinitely in an air-tight container.

Happy Fall!

Thursday
Sep242009

WorryWoo monsters.

 

Have you seen these guys--the WorryWoo monsters?  They are incredible and Max and Leo adore them.

Our family is very lucky to have a friend who loves to spoil our boys.  Well, she actually spoils everyone around her--not just with gifts (though she surely does that), but also with pure kindness and love.  You know those kind of people who just shine?  She's like that. 

Before the start of the year, she gave Max and Leo each a WorryWoo monster, Rue and Nola, and their accompanying books, The Nose that Didn't Fit and The Lonely Monster.  They are superbly made dolls and the story books are so touching.  Here are the links to them on Amazon:  Rue and Nola.  I think it's extremely hard to find dolls for boys but mine still absolutely love their stuffed animals, so these couldn't be more perfect.  If you need a special gift for a little one in your life, I heartily recommend these.

 

Monday
Sep142009

Free Magic School Bus Book (from the EPA).

Our older boys really enjoy the Magic School Bus books.  So I was super excited to see Money Saving Mom's post on the Environmental Protection Agency's giveaway of The Magic School Bus Gets Cleaned Up.  Just call 1-800-490-9198 and request your copy.  When I phoned, my operator did not need the item number, but here it is just in case:  EPA420-K-07-001.  It took less than two minutes and the operator said the book would be mailed in about a week.  Quantities are limited so be sure to hurry--these books are great and spark so many side discussions.  In fact, they are off limits as bedtime books because the boys tend to Q & A me for at least an hour after we read one!  More details are on the EPA's website, here.