Mochi!!

This korean dessert called mochi is one of my favorite desserts. It is a rice cake filled with bean paste. Of course, now a days, mochi is coated and mixed with all sorts of flavorings to change it up and allow creativity to this traditional dessert. When I had gone to ChinaTown in NYC I was fortunate enough to be there during the Chinese new year and Mochi/Diafuku was really prevalent. I grab all sorts and gobbled many down. It was not completely satisfying to me though, as I knew this treat was easy to make, but I just didn’t have the recipe and ingredients to make some myself. Luckily there is the internet! On youtube I found hundreds of forms of Mochi making videos and grabbed the simplest recipe for them and prepared my list of ingredients. The recipe I used can be found my going to this link on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BI7hclGpdDg After watching several times to ensure I wasn’t missing anything I hopped in my car and headed to a recommended oriental grocery in town. Thanks Leigh!! I was very excited and was greatly helped by the folks working in the grocer to find the red bean paste and the sweet rice flour I needed.
I have been putting off making them for a week or so, since I was really busy as of late with my hands and I knew this wasn’t going to be my prettiest first try.
Well, here are some pics of the results and they are delicious. I think next time I might just cut up my mochi for dipping in the Red Bean paste rather than try to fill them. That was a pain. I think I will try sesame seed paste next time as well for filling/dip, since I absolutely love sesame mochi.

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Also, here is the really super simple recipe:

1 cup Sweet Rice Flour

1/2 tsp salt

3 1/2 T sugar

1 cup Water

3/4 cup Red Bean Paste

cornstarch

Mix rice flour, sugar, salt together.  Add water stirring slowly until throughly mixed with no lumps.  Cover bowl with Plastic wrap.  Place in Microwave for three to four mintues until mixture is cooked into a spongy texture.  Stir for at least three minutes, will be stiff and sticky.  Place dough on well cornstarch floured surface and shape into two inch thick, 15 inch long snake.  Cut into even pieces.  Pinch into disks and place a spoonful of red bean paste in the center and pinch closed.  Do the same for each peice of dough.  Lightly coat exterior with cornstarch.  EAT!!!  Do not refrigerate.(They get very stiff, but still taste good)  These really are best to be eaten the day of making with many friends.  Enjoy!!

Sock progress

First sock is coming along.  With LC’s, guidance I am building a sock with a knit three, purl on pattern ribbed sock.  I am so looking forward to tackling the heal I am really trying to plow through the calf.  I have more done than I thought I would by now.  These are pictures I took yesterday, and beleive me I have accomplished even more this morning.

LC even showed me how to find slipped stitches and how to fix them.  My biggest challenge and joy is the fact she taught me how to knit continental(left hand holding yarn).  This has changed my gauge considerably and shows on the Ruana that I am making in knit only, but so worth it!

I am very excited to have this opportunity to learn from her and am so pleased that I am not totally failing, in which , I was very fearful of.

Scarface Kitty

Have you ever had a seemingly indestructible cat?  I seem to have.  I picked up a cat for mouser duties several years ago.  This cat was soon in our hearts.  He is the kind of cat when you pick him up, he turns in to a puddle of mud.  Melts into your hands and would slide right out if you didn’t hold him up.  Totally trusting and relaxed big fluff ball.

About a year in to owning this incredible cat, we had a visit to our door from a stranger.  The stranger cared enough to stop and come to our door to ask if we had a white and orange cat, that he thinks has just bounced off the tires of his car.  I thought for sure we were never going to see that cat again.  Oddly enough he was back in action three days later.  Just with a few extra kinks in his tail and slight limp.  When we were able to pick him up again we discovered a large rack of ribs were missing from his side.  Doesn’t seem to bother him.  huh?  Weird.

One day upon entering our barn.  Cat/Meoweth was in the rafters, apparently trying to catch the little birds.  I must have spooked him when opening a stall door.  He fell straight down.  Landed on a ladder sitting on it side, with his hips.  He quickly gathered himself before I could even take one step in his direction and slinked off.  Again, I was for sure I would never see that cat again.  Oddly enough, he was on our porch that very eveing as if nothing happened, but with a little funk to his walk.

Lots of stuffle could be heard all night on the porch.  Cats growling, our dogs in the house getting anxious.  I thought must be a strange cat or dog in our yard eating the cats food.  I took out my garbage in the morning, only to find a large oppossum in my garbage can sleeping.  I freaked!  No one would help me get it removed, so I covered the can quickly and waited for S. to come home to take care of it.  Didn’t see Cat all day.  Next day he shows up with a large bump right at the base of his tail.  It was very sore to the touch.  Oh dear!  The oppossum must have scratched him or something and it was infected.  The huge hard puss pocket stayed with him for about a month, until it was all healed.  Phew!

One fine day, early this winter, I noticed Cat growling at all the kittens when ever they approached him as he waited at the door for me to let him in.  Then I noticed….a huge bite mark on his hiney!  His ear was bent and puffed up like a Sopaipillas.  He was in pain.  A lot of pain!  He wanted to be loved by us but no one else was to touch him or even look at him.  He followed me everywhere I went when outside, growling at any dark area or movement as if protecting me from whatever got him.  Of course at this time, I had finally arranged for him to be neutered, so that had to be put off.  He took a long time to heal from this and I was worried that he would get rabies from such a bite.  After lots of discussion with animal professionals, we figured it was a coyote that had got him.  I waited and waited for a sign that his personality had changed or was getting ill from the infection developing in the bite.  I waited for a long time and watched the bite puss, scab, and reappear as stupid Cat kept trying to clean it.  But oddly enough he came out of it just fine.  A small spot on his butt with less hair than the rest but in no shape worse than before.

Now, he returns home from a night of marauding about with two big gashes across his face.  These I will not worry about.  I have obviously seen worse on this cat.  But I am not talking about little scratches here.  These are gashes!  What does my cat do to get in so much trouble?!  How many lives does this cat have left to live?  I wonder, can he die?!  Do I have “supercat”?  Nothing seems to keep him down no matter how bad.  I love my cat.  His new name Scarface.

Lemonade Award!

Lemonade Award!

Lemonade Award!

I was so surprised to open my blog this evening to find I have been nominated the Lemonade Award by my dear friend Leilani over at http://creativityinspired.wordpress.com/.  Now it is my turn to bestow the honors upon my favorite blogs.  You will find some common themes to some of these and others purely individualistic. These people give me inspiration, creativity and energy to do more every post I read.  I am honored that they take the time to share their lives and thoughts with me and the world in this manner.

Pass on some lemonade & let someone know they have inspired you. Here’s what you do:

1.Put the logo on your blog or post
2.Nominate at least 10 blogs that show great Gratitude and/or Attitude.
3.Be sure to list and link your nominees within your post.
4.Let them know they have received this award by leaving a comment on their blog.
5.Nominate your favorites and link to your post.

The Nominees are!!!….drum roll…….

PisecoMom at Mind Games, http://piseco.homeschooljournal.net/

LisaAnne at Harmony Valley Homeschool, http://harmonyvalley.blogspot.com/

Linda at Natural Suburbia, http://www.naturalsuburbia.blogspot.com/

http://teachinghandwork.blogspot.com/

Ninny Noodle Noo, http://www.ninnynoodlenoo.com/blog/

Carle at Our Holistic Life, http://ourholisticlife.blogspot.com/

Firefly Mom at Pack of Hungry Snails, http://packofhungrysnails.blogspot.com/

Kristie at The Dream Angels, http://www.thedreamangels.com/

Patrick at Pagan Dad, http://www.pagandad.com/

Earthmama at Spiral Pathways, http://spiralpathways.blogspot.com/

There are actually so many more I could post here that deserve an award for being inspirational for me, but there is only so much time in the day. hehe  I thank everyone of you who make my each day a chance to be inspired.

Nummers for Lunch

Today we started our school work on a positive note with the practice of Cursive, but we started late in the day. Only anhour or so before lunch.  My fault.  Of course, the day spiraled into battle as soon as we came to the next page of school work.  Writing Sentences.  We fought over getting that done so we could eat lunch that I had prepared whilst doing the cursive and the first sentence on the worksheet.  Finally, he finished one sentence and I needed to eat, so we put that aside and ate our lovely lunch.

After we cleaned  up, the battel commenced again to complete the rest of his worksheets.  But finally around 1ish he completed the work and was off to his shower.  Now he is free to play and I can breath a little sigh of relief for the moment.

B. was given a writing assignment today to write a persuasive essay.  This is in hopes of giving LC a writing sample to evaluate his work.  I really need him to be prepared for essay writing and college writing.  Seventh Grade is not that far off from College.   LC gave me some ideas to present to him for topics and I feel this will certainly help motivate him writing.   He has Tae Kwon Do this evening.

That means I get to go to knitting group!! at B&N, hopefully, if all goes well with T.  Yeah!  Show and tell!!