Thursday, February 16, 2012

Baking, Building and Making Memories

Last week I had a huge [what I suspect was a] nesting spurt and spent the better part of 2 days in the kitchen. I had been planning to get some baking done before the baby comes, and those days it just seemed like I wanted, almost NEEDED, to do it and get it out of my system :) For some reason these last few weeks of the pregnancy I have been very un-motivated and un-inspired in the kitchen (or much of anywhere else, really!), so I had great fun doing something that I actually WANTED to do (besides sleep, that is :) ).

The first day I felt almost giddy with everything I got made and frozen:

Double batch Cinnamon Raisin Bagels (yield 20)
Double batch Onion-Parmesan Bagels (yield 20)
Double batch Strawberry-Blueberry Muffins (yield 24)
1 batch bread (yield 3 loaves)

My brothers gave me those stacking cooling racks a couple years ago for Christmas and I put them to good use a few times a year and REALLY like having them!!!

I did not get a picture from the second day. That day my top priority was 3 angel food cakes (from scratch) for a family birthday party we were going to. Aside from the 3 cakes, I also made a double batch of Chocolate Chip Cookies and a big batch of mini crustless quiche (I think it was 3 1/2 doz? Baked in regular cupcake pans.). For the chocolate chip cookies, I baked 4 dozen cookies, then the rest of the dough I scooped out onto waxed paper covered plates and froze, getting enough for another 2 dozen cookies, I think. Of course after the dough was frozen I bagged up the dough balls :)

Susannah had great fun helping me over the two days. I was shaping the first round of bagels while she was awake, and I gave her one of the little dough balls to play with. After I made her stop taste-testing it (she'd eating probably 1/3 of it, ha!), she had fun mashing and kneading and stretching and attempting to imitate my bagel shaping. When I finished with the rest of the bagels, I did help her make her little dough wad into a bagel and she was pretty thrilled :)

Her favorite place in the kitchen - if I'm in there working on ANYthing - is on her "ng" (like "ing" without the "i"), which is what she calls the kitchen stool*, RIGHT at my elbow watching and ready to help with whatever I'll let her help with. If I am making something in the mixer, I've started dragging it out to the middle of the counter where she can see into the bowl and watch it mixing. She loves to help dump ingredients in and help stir if I'm mixing something by hand. She can't wait to be able to crack eggs and measure oil :) And she is always ready and eager for a "gaze" (taste) and lets me know it! I actually almost always enjoy having her company while I'm cooking or baking. I want her to have great, fun memories of helping me in the kitchen - not only because I want her to grow up knowing and enjoying how to cook and bake, but because I just think it will be a fun thing to look back on many years from now.

*We have no idea where or how she came up with "ng" to be her word for the stool. We call it the stool and try to get her to say stool, and she just keeps calling it "ng" :) I know one day she'll say it and it will no longer be the "ng".

While I worked in the kitchen on Saturday, Daniel was working on the addition. Susannah loves it when her Daddy is home and she can be with him. If he is out there and she is not, it doesn't take long for her to ask to go out there, too. She loves to "hammie" (hammer) and "bang-bang" (what you do with a hammer, of course!) just like he does. I always make sure it suits him for her to be out there (for her safety), and when it does she has so much fun! Saturday evening was one of those times so I bundled her up and out she went. I finally remembered to grab my camera and get a couple pictures. It was dark outside and the lighting isn't the greatest out there (yet!), so this was the best one I got.

I still love being a mama, seeing things through Susannah's eyes, watching and helping her make memories (even though she doesn't realize it yet) of helping her mama and daddy with the things they do. The things we simply enjoy, or do just because they are something we do, and yet they are big and exciting and so much fun for her! It is a thrill to my heart :)


Rachel said... [Reply to comment]

Wow! I need to learn how to make bagels, can you send me the recipe? They look delicious!

Rosie said... [Reply to comment]

I think that is probably the very same sound our little granddaughter makes when she wants me to sit down and play. She pats on the floor or where ever she wants me and says that. It is so cute. My daughter is a school teacher and I watch her. She is like my little shadow. I really enjoy reading your blog and miss you when you can't post. Hope every thing goes great with your new one. We have eight ,the youngest still at home. We also have twelve grandchildren. They are such a blessing.

Kelly said... [Reply to comment]

Great job on all your baking! It's so sweet how little girls love to help their mommies :)

Sally said... [Reply to comment]

You are such a super-mommy, taking the time to include Susannah in so much of what you do. I know she's going to have at least as much fun as Paul and Hannah do cracking eggs in just a couple years. I'm glad you got to do something you felt like doing. There's nothing harder than trying to do a major task and having absolutely no interest in doing it at the time.