Thursday, June 25, 2009

birthday preparations and stuff...

It's been so difficult to feel focused enough to write lately, so I decided to just post some random bits of what I've been doing as I can.

I just finished baking two cakes for my son's 21st birthday tomorrow (or later today I should say). For quite awhile, baking anything was too much for me to do, so here I am happily doing two at a time! One is from an old stand-by NY cheesecake recipe from the 'Frugal Gourmet', lots of blending and then pouring, I like the ease of that.






The other was brand new for me, Molly Wizenberg's Winning-Hearts-and-Minds Cake. Also an easy one, the only way I'd be baking two cakes in one night, I think.








I had to photograph them...they look so good...not bragging, just looking forward to the birthday celebration, and satisfied at the accomplishment.

And for a 21st birthday...a 12 pack of beer...I admit to using this opportunity to try something new for me ;-). I'm not much of a beer drinker, and had to search to even find where I could buy this beer, but we have it now...
This is the Summer Scene Variety pack from Magic Hat Brewery. In PA, beer distributors can only sell by the case, and I didn't want $33 worth of beer! So we found this in Wegman's supermarket (I don't know why they sell beer, but apparently they have a large selection from all over the world), along with a 6-pack of Corona, just in case no one else wants weird microbrews.

And the birthday boy actually requested scones...so I do plan a little more baking for tomorrow.

What else...some daylilly photos from yesterday...



These were actually quick shots, I was curious about the effect of the low sun behind the flowers. Now I'd like to spend a little more time and play with this effect some more. That will definitely depend on timing and whether or not the deer that I saw bounding away comes back to eat them all! A photo of the deer would be nice too, I'll try. Oh, and I almost forgot about the nest of wren eggs on my back porch! Mama wren moved into the old clothespin bag hanging next to the back the door...I really didn't think she'd stay with all the activity of the door opening and closing, but she's sitting on them quite a lot now, so I'm hoping for the best.

I've been reading a lot, too. I am really enjoying the books of Haruki Murakami. I read The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle first, then Sputnik Sweetheart, Norwegian Wood, and now South of the Border, West of the Sun...I think I may just keep going, too. I guess they are just what I am needing at this time, kind of like comfort food for the soul.

Along with those, I've been working my way through jewelry and fiber arts books from the local library. I feel like I am absorbing a whole new way of creating, and everything seems to want to work together with everything else (beadwork, crochet, bookbinding, photography, etc. etc.)...no wonder I'm finding it hard to focus! I hope to have some photos of works in progress on here soon. I've had to squeeze my creating time in with so many other necessary things...home-ed paperwork, shopping, cooking, trips to Guitar Center for George and Mike, I'm looking forward to life settling down into a rhythm where creating takes more of a priority....I'm working on it.

One more thing...for anyone wanting to follow the continuing exploits of the Franklin Institute Hawks, there is a blog here with photos of them now, as they have left the nest but are still in the area learning what they need to learn to survive...Hawkwatch.