Thursday, November 28, 2013


I am certainly getting smarter as I'm getting older. Or - just getting to be a smarter parent.

Although Cassia is very helpful in the kitchen - sometimes the help is not so helpful if you now what I mean. So, in order to speed up the process a bit I actually made the cookies and the cake last night after she had gone to bed. Smart - right?!

She did help me mix the orange and green icing today. Today was icing day!

I didn't really want to have to do all of it today and look like a chicken turkey with my head cut off.

As I mentioned, I had offered to bring a dessert and had decided to bring carrot cake. Yum.

Turned out ok - at this point I still had icing left and almost piped some on - but then stepped back and thought - that's good. It was good! Going to go get a piece now actually. 

Just a minute - I'll be right back.

Yup - pretty good - a nice dense cake and the icing is sweet but not too sweet - thank the two blocks of cream cheese for that. Here's the recipe over at Good Thymes & Good Food.

I have never made a cake that involved nuts on the side like this. It took me a minute to plan my approach. In the end I took a handful and pressed them on. Because the icing is quite stiff it worked very well. I was impressed. Nice that Debbie had a huge stash of pecans on hand. 

Both recipes worked out but they both let me down. The recipe for the cake icing would have been enough for two cakes even with a ton of icing on each. Because it called for 2lbs of icing sugar I had realized that I did not have enough icing for the cookies. 

The cookie recipe totally let me down! 
Did you skip on over to Kailey's Kitchen from wence the recipe came. Mine look nothing like her's - grrrrrr. Hate that - her's cookies don't even look like they have carrot in them for gosh sake and exactly how do you get them all round and flat light that - not with this recipe! Anyway, even though I wasn't overly excited with how they looked I iced them - with all my extra icing - and took them along. 

Since we haven't been going out much - what with the snow and all - I thought I'd show you how the ride went over to the other side of Hendersonville.

Headed to Kelly and David and families house for Thanksgiving. They have five kids - Cassia is excited.

An apple + produce stand just down the road. I have been meaning to stop in but they are closed Dec. 1. Maybe we can make it there tomorrow on our way into the city.

One of the many orchards in these parts.

More foreigners! A Westfalia from Quebec, obviously heading further south. Florida no doubt.
And a youngish couple to boot.

Nothing fancy about this picture, I just wanted to show that we went from country - to city (Hendersonville) - to country.

I should have more downtown shots next post since we are headed there tomorrow afternoon for the Christmas tree light up and to meet Santa. Fun.

At the stop light - we all laughed.

This area is very similar to many parts of British Columbia for us - particularly Vancouver Island. A moderated climate - it doesn't get too cold but quite a bit of moisture. Lots of trees and narrow winding roads. Still no shoulders. We laughed when Cecil, the fellow we drove home said - they have a shoulder - it's called a ditch. 

The highway is still lined with trees but beyond are nice stretches of lawn - hobby farm type properties.

From the highway we turned onto Kelly and David's road. Not paved. Gravel. 

Yikes! I thought I was back on the Mexican backroad for a minute. Not sure I could get used to that - I'm starting to become citified I think. AND it went in about a mile - or maybe more - 10 miles maybe!

No sooner had we arrived that Cassia was out and off with the kids. Seven kids at her disposal = fun for a four year old. 
Actually - today being November 28th, means that Cassia is exactly 4 1/2 years old! 
The apple of our eye.

Blackberry and Sitonrocksmokin'

Raspberry - the newest addition to the family.

David and Kelly's house sits within the trees - very tall trees. There's Blackberry starin' at ya.

David's sister and family came from up from Georgia for the weekend. 
LOVE LOVE LOVE her boots. I couldn't resist a picture. 

Ariel showed me her boots to - so, here's a picture of her's too!

One thing you just have to love about living in the country - you get to have your own chickens = eggs. 

Free to good home! Ha! Just jokin' of course - you gotta love the kid - snarky faces and all!

Cassia has yet to meet a dog that she doesn't love.

I guess because she has grown up around Rufus she has no fear - yet. And what dog doesn't love the attention that a little girl provides.

Dinner time!

It was a large group - a rag tag team - 13 adults and 8 kids. Kelly and David did a stellar job (if you've ever had to cook for a group that large you know what I mean) with a delicious meal and exactly how a Thanksgiving meal should be - way to much good food - top button worthy. 

Since it was an early meal, 4:00 pm we were home by 7:30pm. If you can believe that even included a stop at Walmart. Not my idea and I wouldn't even go in - the parking lot was packed. Yup - Black Friday shopping already at full throttle. But since we don't get out very often the boys (Meshach and Josiah - hardly boys - ugh - am I that old already?) wanted to stop for a few items.

A nice third Thanksgiving dinner. 

Thanksgiving is a HUGE deal here in the USA I have realized.....interesting. 

All from me tonight.

Time to digest.



  1. Teresa, I'm very sorry to hear that the carrot cake cookies didn't turn out well for you. May I ask why, exactly, the cookie recipe let you down? I can assure you that the cookies in my photos were made following the exact recipe provided in my blog. I used a very fine grater for the carrots to achieve a more uniform look (you could certainly do the same), and the round shape came purely from rolling the dough into balls as I stated in the recipe. I've had several people make this recipe and love it, so I am truly sorry that you didn't have a similar experience. If you have any questions, I'd really appreciate it if you'd ask me directly-- I'm happy to help, because I stand fully behind my recipe!

    Kailley @ Kailley's Kitchen

    1. Hi Kailley - thanks for the comment. Well, the recipe let me down because they didn't turn out like yours did as per your photos. Your cookies look great while mine showed large chunks of carrot, they were irregular in shape and about twice the thickness.

      Unfortunately, your recipe just said 'grated carrots' not finely grated carrots - that would have helped a lot I'm sure. Perhaps you could note that in the recipe. Also, did you chop up the old fashioned rolled oats? I used old fashioned as well but again my cookies look chunkier than yours.

      I rolled the dough into 1" balls as directed.

      My main question would be - how come my cookies were so thick as compared to yours?

      Thanks, Teresa

    2. I will certainly add a note in the recipe about finely grating the carrots, though that really doesn't impact the recipe in any way outside of aesthetic appeal. The cookies taste exactly the same regardless of how finely or roughly grated the carrots are. I think the larger carrot chunks in your cookies actually give them a colorful, rustic feel-- I love it! As for the cookie shape, most of mine were actually fairly thick as well-- perhaps that doesn't adequately come across in my photographs since the side view of the cookies are slightly out of focus? Cookie thickness depends on how much dough you use, the temperature of the butter, and altitude, among a variety of other variables. If you prefer a thinner cookies, I'd suggest letting the dough warm to room temperature before rolling them into balls. Aside from the "look" of the cookies, was there something else about the recipe that you were unhappy with? I guess I'm just slightly confused as to why my recipe failed you, as everyone who has ever made them or tried them has absolutely loved how they taste (which is, of course, the most important part of a recipe!)! It concerns me that you would accuse me of deceiving my readers, as that is something I would never so much as dream of doing. I worked extremely hard to create and photograph this recipe, and while I appreciate constructive criticism, it's also not entirely fair to post negative and untrue things about the recipe.

      Kailley @ Kailley's Kitchen

    3. It was never about the taste, they were delicious. It was about the visual appeal, which to me is an important component of the presentation especially when the photo that accompanied the recipe shows a more refined looking end product. It may have been due to the coarse grate of the carrots. If it makes you feel better, I could just take the cookie recipe off my blog and pretend it never happened.

      Thanks, Teresa

  2. Boy you managed to open a can of worms.....Glad you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Yes it is a pretty big deal in the US - lots of family get togethers. Though with Bill being from So America it wasn't such a big deal at our house especially after the kids grew up.

    1. Definitely a time for togetherness and that is the really nice thing about it. So nice that we were included in another families celebration - we appreciated it and had a good time.

      Can of worms for sure - sheesh!

  3. That cake is beautiful...I can just taste the cream cheese icing. And cookies...I could use one of those right now! Cassia...could just squeeze her to death....darn adorable. One day her tales will be so sweet....I love following you. got a hubbie with a back out and on the fence about a bigger unit....oh darn I distain stress like that....but I'm leaning toward MORE SPACE... Catch you down the road! I need a backroad ride really bad...maybe tomorrow! C

    1. Thanks CJ! It is a yummy cake - a recipe for you to pin!

      Cassia is a fun little girl - very adventurous. Although we know that she will probably not remember these experiences they will be in there somewhere - a part of her. Hopefully later in her life they will be expressed with an adventurous spirit and a willingness to take on the world and do all there is to do and experience. Time will tell.

      We had more space and went down to less. More isn't always more. We had a vehicle and trailer like yourselves but we really like the one unit much more - something to consider.

      Back roads are fun however we find them a little bit more difficult and stressful over in the east because they are just so darn busy!

      Now, go for a ride!

  4. Teresa, yes indeed, Thanksgiving IS a big deal for many of us here in the good ole USA!! And I thought your cookies came out looking great!! Besides, so many variables can affect how baked goods come out, i.e. altitude and ingredients temperatures, size of dough balls, thickness of dough as you roll/prepare.....we could just blame it on Derek---maybe he sabotaged them!!

    Safe Travels...............

    1. Thanks BlackSheep! That's what spouses are for aren't they? Someone to blame! ha ha probably not a good joke there! Did you ever try the beer and cheddar bread?

  5. Gotta love celebrating Thanksgiving here in the USA, certainly a great feast everywhere.

    1. Getting together over a nice meal is definitely something to celebrate. Being able to celebrate two Thanksgivings is certainly a perk of this winter travel gig.


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