Tuesday, August 30, 2011

celebrating ice

It is a very long story, and I won't bore you with the details.
But we have had no ice maker (or ice trays, for that matter)
for over a year, and as of this morning we have one that works. 
We are very excited.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

great party

 Here's our Cupcake Mario leaping for pizza. He was actually hard to
recognize in person -- easier to see in photos or from farther away than 
we could get from him. But there he is! Thanks to everyone who came,
along with food, gifts, and/or conversation to make it a delightful celebration.
Elliott had a great time.

Friday, August 26, 2011

170 cupcakes

...is what I've cooked up these past couple of days.
My mom, God bless her, came over and helped me
frost them all this morning. It took three hours
What if I had done it by myself?! I really enjoyed 
talking with her as we worked. The time flew by.
The reason for the amount of cupcakes, besides
the fact that we don't know how many people will
come to Elliott's birthday party (he's six already --
can you believe it?!) is that the theme is Mario, and
I was inspired by this pixel mosaic idea. Well,this
particular Mario is made up of 168 pixels (1 cupcake
= 1 pixel). Which is better than the 1-up mushroom 
that requires 238. Anyway, besides loving pixel art,
I liked this idea because it creates an overall image
without complicating the design of each individual
cupcake. I'll post a photo once we get him set up.
Oh... also, my mom suggested freezing the cupcakes
before frosting, and it definitely made things go 
faster. They did much less crumbling into the frosting.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

just because

 A dear friend of mine gave me this book, just because....
Just because she saw it at Anthropology, and just because
she had been to the ice cream store in question last year
on a road trip and it was seriously the best ice she's ever had,
and just because I recently bought the ice cream maker the
recipes were designed for, and just because Anthropology 
has the most beautiful packaging, so you feel like you're
buying a gift every time you shop there. I am thoroughly 
enjoying the book for all the above reasons, and because
it includes stories about the founding of the business itself
and descriptions of the chemistry of ice cream making and 
a beautiful, artistic layout and, most importantly, many
fabulous recipes for not just ice creams, but also sauces,
meringues, macaroons and cones -- all the necessary accessories!
I can't wait to try them out.

Monday, August 22, 2011

latest book

I just finished reading a book called Healing Through Exercise,
by Jorg Blech. Aside from the comprehensive dependence on 
evolutionary theory to explain the findings presented, it's an
excellent read. The author goes through a variety of research
which supports the value of basic, regular exercise to defend against
all sorts of illnesses and many of the common symptoms of aging.

What surprised me most was how frequently the statistics pointed
to low-intensity activity as having a substantial impact.
A brisk, thirty-minute walk (or jog or bike ride) five or more days
of the week has been shown, among other things, to decrease the
incidence of head colds by one-half, reduce stress reactions,
significantly combat depression, push back the onset of age-related diseases,
and diminish the chance of heart attack by one-third.

Other varied amounts and types of exercise were shown to cause the release
of stem cells and the growth of new neurons and arteries, increase testosterone
levels (thus reducing impotence), prevent Alzheimer's and cancer, improve
concentration and coordination in children with ADHD, reverse chronic
and acute back pain, reduce arthritis pain while increasing mobility, and
turn around age-related strength and muscle loss, thereby improving quality of life.

This book focuses on the way that the fields of science and medicine are
beginning to recognize the benefits of physical movement as comparable,
complementary, or sometimes favorable to medical intervention. It also
discusses the many dangers of bed rest being a primary treatment plan for
all sorts of ailments and suggests the benefits of moderate exercise in its place.
Because the research findings are presented in a readable, interesting format,
I easily read the book from cover to cover. It's an encouraging look at the
 rewards we can reap in our own lives with a daily investment of a relatively
 small amount of time and energy. Tennis shoes, here I come!!