For Ashley

Here you go Ashley.  I am not sure if I like the yellow wrap or the grey one better.



Made Ina's outrageous brownies on Monday.  We finally polished them off late Saturday morning (great breakfast option).  Usually with brownies I can take em or leave em, not these though.  This recipe makes lots and lots of brownies, and people in your house might be tempted to sing that Britney Spears song while eating them.  Just a warning.


  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1 pound plus 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips, divided
  • 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 6 extra-large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons instant coffee powder
  • 2 tablespoons real vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided (1 cup for batter and 1/4 cup in the chips and nuts)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups diced walnut pieces
  • Directions

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 13 by 18 by 1 1/2-inch sheet pan.

    Melt together the butter, 1 pound chocolate chips, and unsweetened chocolate on top of a double boiler. Cool slightly. Stir together the eggs, instant coffee, vanilla and sugar. Stir in the warm chocolate mixture and cool to room temperature.

    Stir together 1 cup of the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the walnuts and 12 ounces of chocolate chips with 1/4 cup flour to coat. Then add to the chocolate batter. Pour into prepared pan.

    Bake for about 30 minutes, or until tester just comes out clean. Halfway through the baking, rap the pan against the oven shelf to allow air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. Do not over-bake! Cool thoroughly, refrigerate well and cut into squares


For Sharon

Here is validation that your transitional furniture, and my transitional furniture is okay.  Elle Decor March 2008



Mike fixed the car, I knew he could do it!  But get this, we don't have any tools per se, so we went down to the garage with a butter knife and a candle.  We looked pretty silly.  Mike found a knife in the glove box and used that to unscrew the few screws, and used the candle for a little light.  I think I have said it before, but Mike really is like MacGyver.


All Hail Long Live King Mike!!

Mike and I have a thing with buying cars with little problems.  The first car we bought together  in Hawaii did not reverse, and the driver side door did not open.  If we parked on a slope we had to push the car out.  After the Suzuki died we got a car that had a leaky roof that would shower bits of rusted metal whenever we closed the door.  We had to bang on the starter  with a hammer every time we wanted to start the car.  The doors did not open all the way, and after a kid hit us in the library parking lot, we had a winking head light.  But that car served us well and when we finally donated it for scrap metal I was kinda sad to see it go.  
When we got to California we wanted a car that was a step above our Hawaii cars (not hard to do).  We ended up buying a WV golf from craigslist and got a really good deal for it.  There are some cosmetic problems, the trim is ripped off on the outside, the car is missing a hubcap, the previous owner let his dog ride in the back seat.  But hey we have seat heaters and the windows don't leak.  

We have had our share of problems with this car, but with the right tools Mike has been able to fix all the problems.  And these have been major, potentially very costly problems.  I Have to say Mike is kind of the master of car fixing.  When something has gone wrong with our cars, and he is not sure he can fix it, I have pretty much absolute faith in him.  And the mad does not disappoint.  Therefore, I am sure he can fix our current problem.
For some reason  you have to unlock our car from the passenger side, or else the alarm will go off.  No big problem really, it took a few times stetting the alarm off for me to remember but now I remember to open the car from the passenger side.  Anyhow, last week I went to unlock the car and nothing happened.  Nothing.  The door just did not unlock.  Fortunately we had not set the alarm and I was able to go to the driver side and open the car. However, we have had to be really careful not to lock the car from the door, or turn the key the wrong way when we are opening the door, or it will turn the alarm on, and the only way to turn it off is by opening the car from the passenger side, which is impossible because I broke it.  

To prevent me from accidently setting the alarm when I am trying to open the door I put a hot pink arrow on the side of the dash reminding me when I look in the window, turn the key to the FRONT of the car, not the BACK.  Well, I forgot to look and I turned the key to the back.  Alarm set, no way to turn it off without going through the passenger door, which as you know by now is broken.  I called Mike to see what I should do.  Mike emailed me instructions on dismantling the alarm.  Dismantling the alarm, crossing some wires and resetting the whole thing....  I am not so good with stuff like this.  And so Mike is on his way home to bail me out.  Thanks Mike, I know you will fix everything.


A few things

I was off work today (yes I got a job, about time too huh?) and decided to go to the Mission and explore a bit.  A girl I work with told me about this great store Paxton Gate that has such a strange mix of oddities and treasures.  The strangest thing I saw?  Individually wrapped owl droppings with a note saying, "Each dropping contains actual mouse bones".   There were really strange things like owl droppings wrapped up like baked potatoes along side mouse-a-dermy.  That is, mice stuffed and made up like Hamlet, a bride and groom and the pope.
There was also some really beautiful jewelry, which is why my co-worker told me about this shop in the first place.  I was admiring her necklace, a rose thorn cast in 14k gold by Laurie Brown, that was so lustrous and delicate I had to see if there was anything else there there that was as lovely.  I did not end up buying any thing to wear but got something to put up on the wall (all of our walls are SO bare right now) and we happened to have a frame just the right size at home.
I went into a few furniture stores, got molested (in this case I mean verbally bothered) by a really large Hispanic guy.  Thanks again dude for making me feel uncomfortable and vulnerable. Boo.  Walked, walked, walked.  Bothered by another Hispanic guy (give it a rest already crazy people, will you?).  Mike met me after work and we ate at Frjtz.  I had the Goya crepes, Mike had the Velasquez sandwich.  Pretty good.  And it was nice because we were there before the evening rush.  That's all.


Bobble Dress

I just saw this at the purl bee.  If I had a little girl I would make this for her. If you do have a little girl, and the time to make it, here is the pattern.


I don't really get Twitter.  Why would you want to know what I am doing every second of the day?  Am I missing something?  If I am please explain it to me, then maybe I will start using it too.  But most likely not.

Opera in The Park

Sunday was a good day. Sacrament meeting was good, Sunday school was good, and Relief Society was very good. After church we drove over to Golden Gate Park to sit on the grass and listen to the SF opera sing and play some beautiful arias. It was kind of a perfect Sunday afternoon thing to do. We relaxed in the sun listening to beautiful music.  After the free concert we walked in the park enjoying nature

I put this last one here because I look like I have ape arms.  Don't you think so?