Monday, January 23, 2012

Home-Made Ice Cream

So, on a complete whim, I decided I was going to attempt making some home-made ice cream. So I Googled some recipes, as well as how to make it without an ice cream machine, cuz I don't have one. Found some good stuff, I kinda blended two recipes, one was the ingredients and the other was how to make it without a machine, but I didn't grab either link and now I don't remember where they were, sorry =(

So this was my first attempt:

Coconut Ice Cream
5 egg yolks
2 cups coconut cream (I just skimmed the top stuff off of a couple cans of coconut milk, but it didn't give enough coconut flavour...)
2 cups heavy cream
3/4 cups sugar
1 vanilla bean
2 tsp rum (optional of course, I chose not to put it in this round, but perhaps next round.)

Whisk yolks, set aside.
Mix creams and sugar in pot.
Slit vanilla bean with a sharp knife and scrape the seeds into the pot.
Warm over medium heat until sugar is dissolved.
Add a ladle of warm mixture to the eggs and whisk; whisk while adding the rest.
Return to pot and cook over medium heat, stirring gently and continously, until it reachs 85C (185F).
Strain into medium bowl. Add rum if desired, and blend well.
Place bowl into a large bowl filled with ice. Chill in fridge for several hours.
Put into freezer for 30 minutes. Beat until creamy again, return to freezer for 30 minutes. Repeat until you have beaten the mixture a total of 5 times. Transfer mixture into a storage container, and return to freezer for at least two hours. Enjoy! =)

Ps these are a couple egg yolks I used, the first one broke, and the second one was a different brand which was more orange. Looks creepy kinda, but also kinda cool!

Finished product, slightly sampled =P

It is delicious!!!! Because I just used the stuff on top of the coconut milk rather than actual coconut cream, it wasn't as coconut-y as I was hoping, but the vanilla bean really stands out and it's pretty good! I can't wait to make some French vanilla ice cream!!! =D

Zesty Spinach Soup

So, this is the soup I had posted about earlier, and I am finally getting to posting the recipe. I have also found where I got it from! It is my Cooking Light book, but I adapted it a bit to suit my needs, and I didn't have any lemons nor sour cream.

Zesty Spinach Soup
4 tsp olive oil
2 red onions
4 cups veggie broth
3 medium potatoes, diced
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 10-oz bag baby spinach
1 cup sour cream, divided
1 tsp grated lemon rind

Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion; sauté 3 minutes. Add broth and next 3 ingredients. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat, and simmer 8 minutes or until potato is very tender, stirring occasionally. Add spinach; cover and cook 2 minutes or until spinach wilts.
Run soup through blender, adding sour cream as you go.
Serve soup with a dollop of sour cream and a bit of lemon rind.
Yield: 4 1-cup servings

This is without the sour cream and lemon rind, as I said, I didn't have any, but it was still good =)

Monday, January 16, 2012

How Are You?

I was visiting a friend tonight, and I'm unsure if she was doing it on purpose or if there was really nothing else to ask at those moments, but she kept asking me, "So how are you?" I didn't think too much of it the second time she asked, but the third time I wondered, is she trying to get at something? The thought didn't last long because we got into other discussions.

But I was thinking about it on the bus ride home... When you ask someone how they're doing, it's usually something like, "Oh I'm okay," or "Good." Nothing really deep.

I was finding that each subsequent time my friend asked me how I was doing, I was more and more willing to really tell her how I was doing. Not that I'm currently feeling awful and terrible, but I'm also not feeling great and superb.

But how often do we really get past just saying that we're doing well, or fine? Especially when we're not really well or fine?

How many times does someone need to ask, "How are you?" before we really get down to the truth?

How long does it take?

My friend only asked me three times, but had she asked a fourth, I probably would've said that I was feeling really lonely. Really brought down. Really sucked down. I probably would've told her about how I was feeling about a certain someone else that she knows of who is really dragging me down spiritually.

I don't really know where I'm going with this post, I just wanted to note that I find it interesting how when people repeatedly ask you how you're doing, it seems like each time it digs deeper and closer to the truth.

So now I'm gonna go make me some dinner! Zesty spinach soup, I can't remember where I got the recipe from... I'll try to remember to post the recipe here with a picture =)

Thursday, January 5, 2012


Last night I was at bible study at the house I used to live at on Mountain. Wonderful time! What an awesome group of people!

I had a conversation with a friend there. She's been struggling lately. I don't want to say anything about it here, because it's not my place to share her stories. But in talking with her, she had asked me about Christmas, and I filled her in on what's been happening with my aunt and all that. Then she asked me if I'd ever dealt with someone close to me dying, and so I told her about Wayne, and how I was right there in the room sitting with him as he died.

I shared some of my struggles from that. The suicidal thoughts, the demonic attacks, the immense anger I had felt towards God.

It's amazing how freeing it is sharing my stories. Stories that I've been pretty open about here on this blog, but not so much in person. Not that I've hidden it, it's just not talked about.

It can be so hard to talk about sometimes. I didn't get too much into detail with my friend. I did tell her that I have had suicidal thoughts in the past, and that I have worked through some stuff.

I don't even know how to express what I'm trying to get out...

I still have a lot of stuff to work through, a lot of healing to do. I believe that talking about this stuff plays a big part in that healing. And I'm not just talking about sitting here at the computer and typing it. I'm talking about sitting with someone in person, and speaking it. Being open with someone. Showing your raw emotions. Because I can sit here and type whatever I want, change my mind, delete it, and write something else. Or even write nothing at all.

When you're talking face to face with someone, there is no backspace button. When you start talking about deep issues, those emotions come out. Throats tighten. Voices crack. Tears fall. Exposing yourself like that to someone is so risky and terrifying, and yet that's when true healing can happen.

I am craving that.

So many people have said to me, "God is always there!" Yeah, I believe that to be true, but God isn't visibly sitting here with me. God isn't physically here to give me a big hug.

I sometimes find myself so skeptical about God. Don't get me wrong, I believe with my whole heart that He is spiritually with me. I believe that Christ has died for my sins, and I am redeemed from my sins, and I will live forever with Him.

But when I'm down here in the dumps, struggling to keep trudging through this life, I need someone here physically with me. Someone to audibly talk with me. Someone to lend me a shoulder to cry on.

I can't remember the last time I had a good cry with someone. I always seem to be the one lending a shoulder. Not that I mind! I love my friends so much, and I am grateful that I have those opportunities to be there for them when they're needing someone.

But I feel like I always need to be so strong for others.

I wish that someone could be here for me.

I wish that I could allow myself to let them be here for me.

I don't want to walk this journey alone. I can't walk it alone. I just wish I wasn't so afraid to open up face to face with people.

I wish I knew what I was afraid of.

I have a lot of big wishes...

Monday, January 2, 2012

Projects for 2012

So.... For 2011 (and 2010 too I suppose) I had a book list that I wanted to get through. Throughout the year, I ended up adding more and more books, but read less and less as I got more into stitching again. So for this year, I will have a general list of what I'd like to accomplish this year, whether it's books to read, stitching projects to get done, or major projects around in my home. So here goes!

1. Finish stitching blue phoenix - done!

2. Stitch red phoenix (it's just a negative image, but I'll actually stitch it on black!) - done!

3. Finish stitching purple frog - done!

4. Paint the walls in this place a different colour! - no longer relevant, cuz I've moved!

5. Read Emma by Jane Austen

6. Read Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

7. Read Crazy Love and Erasing Hell by Francis Chan

8. Read Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin

9. Work on my Wreck This Journal some more

10. Get more Keri Smith books, specifically "Mess," "This Is Not a Book," and "Living Out Loud"

11. Finish the 1000-piece Starry Night puzzle that's on my table - also no longer relevant, cuz it was packed up for moving!

12. Get all my DMC threads onto bobbins and organised in the case I now have - done!

13. Go through all my craft stuff and reorganise it now that I have a second stack of storage shelves - done, thanks to moving! =)

14. Go through all my closets to make room for a bike that my mom said I could have. With this bike, I do plan on biking to work more often, especially during July and August, then I can save on bus fare! =) Also, need to get a helmet, cuz I'll have to be biking on the road... =S - no longer relevant, seeing as I've moved to a place with a balcony I can store my bike on. Though I have been biking a lot more throughout the summer, and hence haven't bought July or August bus passes =)

15. Learn a Latin ballroom dance! =)

16. Learn to play violin!!! My great-aunt had a violin, and her boys said that I could have it! I've wanted to learn to play violin since I was a little girl, and now it's gonna happen!!!!! =D

That's about it for now, but I'm sure I'll add more throughout the year lol.

A Day Late...

Buuuuuuuut whatevs.... Sorry I haven't been blogging lately, I've been busy doing other stuff... Stitching, playing video games (specifically Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time), doing Christmas stuffs...

Also, my great-aunt was in the hospital for a few weeks. She had had a major stroke, was doing better, got worse, was doing better, got worse, and her sons decided to just let her go. She had expressed before that she wouldn't want to live as a vegetable, and she was showing signs that her brain was shutting down (breathing problems, only being awake for a few seconds at a time, etc.) So she passed away Christmas evening. I'm doing okay. I miss her, I am sad that she's gone, but God has given me such an amazing peace about it all, so I am thankful for that =)

I have been blessed as well through this tough time, her sons decided that they wanted their mom's possessions to go to any family who needs/wants it. So since my mini freezer I got for Christmas didn't work out (I'll get to that story....), I got her deep freezer. And it fits nicely in my kitchen, but it still takes some getting used to. I keep bumping into it when I get up from the table and turn to bring my dishes to the sink... Also, it adds to all the noises at night, so gotta get used to that too. It's kinda creepy actually lol almost like it's pulsating or something... But I know that's normal, cuz I remember when I was little, my mom kept her deep freezer in her bedroom, and when I would crawl into her bed in the middle of the night cuz I had a nightmare, I would hear it pulsate like that. It creeped me out then, and it still does now lol but hey, at least now I have more freezer space, yayyyyy!!!!!!! =D

I also got a few more baking pans (8x8 pan, 9x9 pan), some kitchen clips, a straight-edge slicer thing (kinda like a grater, but for slicing...), and another cooling rack. So yay, I can bake more stuff at a time now! =)

Side note: I just looked up at my bonsai tree, and I think it's doing okay now! I thought I had killed it cuz a lot of leaves were falling off, but none have fallen off recently, and they're looking pretty green still. Yay! =)

Okay, so Christmas. 'Twas good! =) Went to Weston for the Christmas Eve service, spent the night at my mom's (Alisha came too), we did our traditional Christmas morning stuff. Though that kinda all got a bit screwy, cuz my mom went to go visit her aunt while breakfast was baking (we were making creme brulee french toast, and the hospital is right by my mom's). But she had taken a turn for the worst, and the decision was made to let her go, so my mom went to her mom's to tell her in person, cuz she gets pretty emotional and it wouldn't be good to tell her over the phone.

So anyways, my mom had gone to the hospital, came home to eat quick, went to tell Granny, then came home and we opened our gifts. I was pretty stinkin' excited about what I got!!! =D Like I mentioned earlier, I did get a mini freezer, it was so awesome!!! It had four pull-out shelves, which would've been great! Unfortunately, when my mom brought it over to my place the next day, we opened it up to find that it was all marked up and dented. So my mom took it back to the store, and unfortunately it had been the last one, and they weren't being made anymore. So that sucked. But it worked out in the end, so that's good =)

Also, my mom crocheted me a blanky!!! It's BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!! =D

I also got some new bathroom hand towels and face cloths =) Aaaaaaaaaand lots of chocolate, and a couple mandarins from Santa lol.

I think that's about it for now... There are some things I want to accomplish in 2012, but I'll make it a separate post.