Sunday, October 30, 2011

grey skies

    I was almost convinced that California didn't have an Autumn. It was 95 degrees, not a cloud in the sky, the leaves were not turning vivid reds and yellows but just a dull grey-brown.

 Then one day I woke to find the sky a soft, pale grey. It was raining, but not hard. And it was cold. Blanket and hot cocoa kind of cold. Perfect. This is the Autumn I know and love.

  I figured it wouldn't last, so I tried to make the most of it by drinking lots tea, reading a good book, and going outside to do some Autumn-photography with a pumpkin - some of the best things to do during this beloved season.

  It really didn't last - the next day was back to bright blue skies and hot, summer-y weather again. But even still, somehow it officially feels like Autumn now. A different kind of Autumn, certainly, but still an Autumn. Pumpkin patches, Fall parties, colorful scarves, fallen leaves (despite their dullness), reading, more reading, and of course - slightly cooler weather. Just slightly.

 What's your Autumn been like so far?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

far away ago

 Those few days we spent in California last May seem ridiculously long ago. I can only really remember the half of it, and more would have been lost too, if I hadn't tried to capture it.

  That's why I love photography - it's capturing those moments that would have been forgotten and those memories that would have been less vividly remembered. I'm still a complete beginner; rarely to my photos turn out exactly how I wanted them. But this summer I just kept taking and taking more pictures. Consequently, the thousands of photos were rather a pain to sort through. But it was worth it. Because each click of the camera meant more memories captured. And each click of the camera meant another thing to never forget.

There are tons of examples of that throughout the summer-folders on my computer. From that perfect Snapple-drinking day, to the marvelous Iowa sunsets, and that lovely day in Minnesota. And even that time in California at the beginning of it all was filled with happy things. For Instance:

Example #1: My sister's graduation. I might just have had my camera up to my face the whole time.

[nervous/excited/bored graduates]

 Example #2: That place with the cool rocks. I have no idea what that place was called or where it was, but it was extremely cool.

Example #3: All those windmills on the way to Arizona from California. I'm not exaggerating when I say there seriously must have been hundreds of them. It was quite a strange sight and I decided that it was worth mentioning.


 Currently -

Reading: The Sword by Bryan Liftin.
Listening to: Firefly by Jimmy Needham.
Loving: Iced Pumpkin Spice Lattes. Bestest.


Sunday, October 2, 2011

pumpkin cookies.

 Autumn is the season for delicious, cinnamon-y pumpkin treats.

 One of my family's favorite pumpkin treats are 'iced pumpkin cookies'. They are not exactly like cookies at all - they are sort of like muffins in a more cookie-like shape - but that doesn't really matter. What matters is that they are incredible. And have lots of cinnamon in them. And there's icing too. And you need to make them.

  Here's how.

   { recipe below}

I .After turning on your favorite playlist, set the oven to 350 F (175 C) degrees. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, soda, and salt.

II. Then stir in the cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice - two of the best-smelling things in the world. Set mixture aside.

 III. In a separate bowl, cream together the sugar and butter.

|pureed pumpkin. not exactly lovely looking stuff. ew!|

VI. Stir in the pumpkin, egg, and vanilla.

V. Gently stir into dry ingredients until combined. Don't over-stir!

VI. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto baking sheet.

VII. Set a timer for 15 minutes. They'll most likely take a bit longer, but it's a good time to check them. Meanwhile, go sit down with a good book while the maid cleans up the mess you made. Or maybe not.

VIII. By now, the whole house will be smelling like cinnamon, and you may start feeling nostalgic. Or possibly just hungry. Anyway, let them cool for a few minutes on a cooling rack, while you make the icing.

IX. With a fork, carefully drizzle on the icing. Or you could dunk them. It's up to you, really. 

And that's it! Pretty simple recipe - but they are truly the perfect Autumn treat.

Iced Pumpkin Cookies
   (makes about 14 cookies)
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the icing:
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Have a lovely day,