cleverchickadee


Divine Cupcake Intervention by quornflour

I live one town over from Boston. From the time I moved back east, my faux niece Alexz has asked when she can come visit me.

Her parents and I decided that this year, she was old enough to board a plane all by herself. So I booked a ticket so that she could take her first solo flight (across the country) to come visit me.

Her spring break coincided with Patriot’s Day, so of course I thought it would be a fun outing for us to go check out the Marathon.

Alexz is a super smart kid, though she is only 10, she is definitely smarter than a lot of kids her age (and it’s not just me that says that even if I am a tad biased).

When she arrived she went on and on about this show “DC Cupcakes” that she LOVES, I had never heard of it.

She showed me a book she had and gushed on about how amazing Sophie and Katherine are and how they make things out of cupcakes and how they made a dress for DC Fashion week “where the trends are set”. She talked about them as though they were close personal friends of hers. She idolizes them and wants to be just like them when she grows up. Frankly if a kid is going to pick reality TV stars for idols, she could definitely do worse.

Sunday we trekked out to OSV (Old Sturbridge Village) and since we were meeting friends there, one of whom is a vegan we made, that’s right vegan cupcakes using my tried and true favorite recipe.

Monday was race day, so we got up and started in on what had quickly become our routine, the Coffee shop: coffee and scone for me, hot chocolate and chocolate croissant for her. Then we hopped on the redline and headed into the city.

We went to the commons and rode on the swan boats. The weather was beautiful and perfect, (especially compared to 2012 when it was so hot some people had deferred.)

As we worked our way to the finish line an ice-cream truck passed. Alexz excitedly asked if she could have ice-cream. Being the responsible Aunt that I am, I told her, “no sweets before lunch, but I reserve the right to change my mind.”

We continued our walk, as we headed up Newbury Street I noticed a cupcake shop, mind you, I had not made the connection that Georgetown Cupcakes was in fact DC Cupcakes. She had not seen it and I needed coffee, so I said to her, “remember how I said I reserve the right to change my mind?”

“Yeah”, she says.

“You want a cupcake?”

I have seen this kid excited, but OH MY HECK, she went crazy, I instantly went from Best Aunt Ever, to BEST.AUNT.EVER!

She was very proud for knowing about the secret cupcake, which she of course ordered.

After calling all of her friends to brag about going to Georgetown Cupcakes, we headed to the Marathon finish line.

We found spots upfront across the street from the medic tent. She asked about why there were so few women, and counted each one she saw come across.

I told her what I knew about the history of the race, she commented on how crazy it was that anyone would want to intentionally run 26 miles as fast as they could. I told her about Katherine Switzer and being hassled (to put it nicely) when she first ran the marathon.

And then something happened… she went from peppy to – SUGAR CRASH MELTDOWN COUNTDOWN. I looked at her and knew we needed to get some protein in the kid, or I would be sorry. How true that was I did not yet know, so instead of heading to the finish line to meet a friend, instead we headed back to the Gardens and I sent a text to my friend that we were going to get lunch instead.

We headed to a restaurant, when we got there my friend got a call from her roommate, wondering where she was, and that’s when we found out what had happened, a mere 15-20 minutes from leaving the finish line.

Now I am not one to go on about God or Divine intervention, but I must say, this was a Divine Cupcake Intervention for sure. Had it not been for one awesome 10 year old and her obsession over cupcakes, well I don’t even want to think about that.

With or without cupcakes, I am glad she had a sugar crash, she is after all the BEST.NIECE.EVER.

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Cookie Time by quornflour

In Boston there is this old jail, the Charles Street Jail, it was converted into a swanky hotel. It went from the place you might pay not to spend the night, to a place people pay premium for a night.

I have never stayed there, but they do have a bar and restaurant that I have been to a few times. They have good drinks. What they also have is super delicious chocolate chip cookies.

The great thing about their cookies is they are served warm and with the recipe. Everyone has heard the urban legend of the 250$ recipe.

Anyway, I was going through my cell phone photos and I found a photo of the cookie and the cookie recipe, so I figured I would share.

Happy Sunday!



Stuff we Love: Self-Filtering Water Bottles by quornflour

TxK and I both travel a fair amount and we both like to keep hydrated. With all of the post 9/11 regulations, bringing a water bottle into the airport is pretty much impossible. Of course, they then turn-around charge an insane amount for a bottle of water; water in a bottle that is most likely going to end up in a landfill.

There are a few things you can do to prevent this.

  1. Bring a self-filtering water bottle:

    Brita and CamelBak both have versions that TxK and I have tested and liked. Just make sure you empty it before you go into the airport, I have had TSA agents threaten to toss mine a few times, because they can.

    His exact words, “even though that is empty, I can make you throw that away if I want.”

    To which I replied, “of course you can.”

    The bottles filter the water as you drink it, so you can fill it up at a public drinking fountain or bubbler.

  2. Make friends with a short drip:

    Bring a regular water bottle and buy a “short drip” (10oz drip coffee – kids hot chocolate size) or a banana or something at your airport Starbucks.

    Starbucks filters their water to ensure standardized taste for their coffee beverages. As a result the cold water they use for iced drinks is also filtered. In my experience, the stands I have approached in the airport will not always fill my water bottle for free, but they will fill it for a purchase of a beverage.

The earth will thank you.



Road Trip – Episode 3: Road Food by quornflour

It seems there are a lot of people who seem to think of Road Food when on a road trip to be primarily junk food or fast food. This need not be the case.

 

I have some friends who find the local BBQ of the place where they are while others stick with the same fast food chains. There was a time where my road trips were filled with corn nuts and red licorice.

Now I like to a mix. I have a bag with an ice pack that holds bread, peanut butter and jelly and at any time a variety of other snacky foods. I like to maintain foods that do not require utensils or extreme preparation.

When I land some place I like to see if there is a locally owned place that is especially good, or a diner, or if visiting friends: gather groceries and make a nice meal.

My first night on the road I stayed with my aunt, we hit the grocery store and prepared a feast of cheese, salmon, veggies and a host of other finger friendly foods.

Last night we had a “Mexican Feast” of soft shelled tacos and strawberry mango margaritas made from scratch and not too sweet.

Really I am just telling you this, not because I have anything profound to say, or because you can eat healthy on the road but really because I want to show you some pictures of some delicious food I have had on this trip.



Piña Colada Waffles by quornflour

The Clever Chickadees recently took a weekend excursion in Hawaii.

On the first day, after massages, we decided that we should get breakfast and lunch. There was an open air restaurant with a buffet that was the perfect solution. Have breakfast, sit in the sun, hang out, have lunch, all for one price… made the “all you can eat” price tag of 26$ each seem far thriftier.

After doing a quick round I discovered a few different ingredients in various parts of the buffet. Waffles, whipped butter and coconut syrup… yup coconut syrup, probably my new favorite, even above real maple syrup: they might revoke my Maine Card for that.

This waffle, given you have the ingredients needed is super simple and super delicious.

Take a tiny waffle, pour some coconut syrup over top, top that with whipped butter, then add fresh pineapple, top that with a little more coconut syrup; sprinkle it all with shredded coconut.

I enjoyed mine with some Portuguese sausage and cottage cheese, TxK added Macadamia nuts to hers, the sides are up to you.

Anyway you make it; you will have no choice but to enjoy this super delicious breakfast treat!




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