Temple Day

Tuesday we went to the Temple. It was such a lovely day up there, the sky was blue, the blossoms on the trees were blooming, everything smelled so sweet and springy, and best of all you could see out across the bay to the city.

Thank You Ina Garten

So, yesterday I was in a baking mood and made this cake. I made it a few Sundays ago for Elizabeth's birthday, but I did not have any coffee so I used a cup of sour cream to make up for the liquid. I am pretty sure Mike will eat the rest of the cake today, he loves chocolate more than anyone I know. Here is the recipe:

Butter, for greasing the pans
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
2 cups sugar
3/4 cups good cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk, shaken
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup freshly brewed hot coffee

Chocolate Buttercream, recipe follows

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter 2 (8-inch) round cake pans. Line with parchment paper, then butter and flour the pans.

Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.

Place 1 layer, flat side up, on a flat plate or cake pedestal. With a knife or offset spatula, spread the top with frosting. Place the second layer on top, rounded side up, and spread the frosting evenly on the top and sides of the cake.

Chocolate Frosting:
6 ounces good semisweet chocolate (recommended: Callebaut)
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 extra-large egg yolk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon instant coffee powder

Chop the chocolate and place it in a heat-proof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Stir until just melted and set aside until cooled to room temperature.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until light yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg yolk and vanilla and continue beating for 3 minutes. Turn the mixer to low, gradually add the confectioners' sugar, then beat at medium speed, scraping down the bowl as necessary, until smooth and creamy. Dissolve the coffee powder in 2 teaspoons of the hottest tap water. On low speed, add the chocolate and coffee to the butter mixture and mix until blended. Don't whip! Spread immediately on the cooled cake.


Totally Bogus

We went night boarding at Bogus when we were visiting my sister in Idaho. I think the last time I went snowboarding was before my mission, so let's see... about 5 years ago. We had a lot of fun though, but MAN were we sore the next day. Here are some really attractive pictures of us. Thanks for letting us borrow the van Elizabeth and Wade.



Mike just made me the best turkey sandwich. Love that man.


A few people asked how I did the picture on the last post, truth be told I didn't do it, Mike did. I saw something like it and told Mike what I wanted and he figured it out. I have been trying to convince him that he should have his own photo blog, or perhaps post on here about how to do some of the cool tricks he does {some of which are represented in the following pictures}. So, expect that to come.

Here are some pictures Mike took while he was in Poland last week for his Grandma's funeral. While he was there Mike picked up a V-Day gift for me, a beautiful tear shaped amber pendant {I guess Poland is known for it's amber}. Thanks Mike, I am glad you are home.

Mike stitched together 6 or 7 pictures to create this one


this is 6 or 7 pictures layered to get the best out of all of them

old town Warsaw

Mike wearing his Grandpa's coat

Uncle Gregosz and Grandpa

at the cemetery



She sure is a darling little trouble maker.


Blame it on Fidel!

We watched this movie a few months ago and really liked it. The little girl who plays Anna is great, just look at that pout!

Fighting in Catan

We played The Settlers of Catan a few times while we were at Elizabeth and Wade's house. After the hour long {snore} instruction intro we had a really fun time playing the game. Just ask anyone, I can be pretty feisty when it comes to games and I have pretty good beginners luck. I hope we get this game soon.

P.S. Not sure how this buxom lass is going to help those settlers, but I have my suspicions.



Happy Valentine's Day my dearest, I love you, love you, love you. I miss you too.



Wednesday we decided to fly to Idaho to visit my sister. It is cold here. United airlines is the worst airline.



Earlier this week Mike's grandma died So Mike will be going to Poland next Wednesday to attend the funeral. We stayed with Mike's Grandpa when we were in Poland during our honeymoon, and I was really touched by how much love his grandma and grandpa had for one another. Every day Grandpa {who is 92} would take the train and then walk the remaining half mile to the old folks home grandma lived in .He would spend several hours with her moving her joints, massaging her muscles, and walking her around the room. And grandpa would always bring grandma something sweet to eat.


Snip Snip

This morning

This afternoon