Wednesday, August 22, 2007

World's Best Key-Lime Coconut Cake

I've decided to post recipes here on my blog occasionally.

For IV's birthday I made a key-lime coconut cake- and the cake was the best- ever!

Cake Ingredients:
1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
1 cup coconut milk (unsweet)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2.5 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 egg whites
Filling/Icing Ingredients:
1 tablespoon freshly grated lime peel
1/3 cup key lime juice (I got it from a bottle)
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
1/2 cup butter
8 oz cream cheese
powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour 3 cake pans.
Cream the butter and sugar until ight and fluffy. In another bowl mix coconut milk and vanilla- add half the mixture and blend. In another bowl sift flour, baking powder, and salt. Add sifted mixture then milk mixture and blend.

Using a mixer with clean, dry, grease free beaters and bowl beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold the beaten whites into the batter until no white remains. Pour into pans and bake until tip of knife inserted in center comes out clean. About 25 minutes. Cool on a rack.

While the cake is baking make the key lime filling. In the saucepan whisk together the lime peel, juice, sugar, and eggs. On medium heat cook the mixture whisking constantly until it thickens, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat. Whisk in the butter a little at a time. Refrigerate until well chilled, about 1 hour.

When the cake has cooled spread about half of the filling between both layers. Mix the remaining key lime filling with the 8 oz of cream cheese, add powdered sugar as needed to thicken the icing. Ice the top and sides of the cake with the cream cheese and filling mixture.

This recipe was inspired by the coconut lemon layer cake in Moosewood Restaurant Book of Desserts.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Fresh starts... how I miss you!

Around here the universities are just starting for the fall semester- and the schools are just starting too.

I am having a nagging feeling of missing something.

What am I missing? I think it's the feeling of a fresh start.

That pleasant/scary feeling you get at the beginning of a new year? Or when you move to a new town? Or start a new job?

I kind of miss it.... I find myself looking with longing at university ads- remembering moving into the dorms.

Sigh... it's fall but I don't have anything new to start or anything to end- not anything big, anyway.

I guess that's all part of being an adult... life is one line instead of a series of more exciting bumps in the road.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Raising children = Building a Cathedral

Every mom feels invisible sometimes. We can't help it- once we were single and stood on our own merits and now we are the support of others.

I hope to be building something great in my son, and in my family. Something that will go beyond me and into the future I cannot see.

Today, I got a really great e-mail that talks about the similarity between raising a child and building a cathedral (one of the great ones, in Europe that took generations to complete.)

The workers knew they wouldn't see the end result of their labors.

Here are four truths about cathedrals:
No one can say who built the great cathedrals-- we have no record of their names.
These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.
They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.
The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.
I like this story too:
A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, "Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it." And the workman replied, "Because God sees."
Those small sacrifices we make every day for our children- our family- they are building something great.

We won't see the finished product, but as moms we know that the path is a worthy one.

I think this is something to think about as I am occupied with one more diaper to change, toys to pick up, laundry, all the things that take up my day.

I am building something greater than myself, and God sees.

Small things matter.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

My future house!

This is a picture of a house in Cincinnati, Ohio- designed by architect and design professor Terry Brown. I think he actually had his students do much of the construction.

It is called the "Mushroom House."

You can see more pictures here.

If we ever move to Cincinnati I am going to buy this house! It would certainly be an experience to live there!

Now IV will never want to move.....

Sunday, August 12, 2007


Busy- I think that is one of the most commonly used words in a mom's vocabulary.

Somehow, I decided I wasn't busy enough- where this idea came from I'm still wondering- but I have taken on several new projects.

Next week, I start teaching an 8th grade CCD (Confraternity of Christian Doctrine,) it's Catholic Sunday school and this year is especially important because my students are also being prepared for Confirmation.

I've already started preparing- and there's lots more to do. Fortunately, IV is helping me- in fact, he is listed as the co-teacher. However, DV will be in class too, so there probably won't be a lot of co-teaching going on- more like taking turns.

I applied for an adjunct position at the university where IV is a professor- I'll either be teaching a lab or a lecture, probably starting the week after next.... maybe not starting until Spring (I am not sure which to hope for.)

Not to mention all of my other activities- running my jewelry business, secretary and board member of my neighborhood association, and of course most importantly being a wife and mother.

So, I am VERY busy. I probably don't even have time to be writing this....

Friday, August 10, 2007

IV's Birthday celebration!

Here are some pictures from IV's birthday!

You can see DV LOVED the "airplane museum" SO much!

IV was nice enough to let DV help him blow out the candles on his cake.

I think 2 year olds believe every birthday belongs to them.

DV did say happy birthday Daddy quite a bit!

We had a very fun day! Even if I did end up driving about 4 hours... and IV drove some too!

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Happy Birthday IV!!!

Happy birthday Baby!

I am SO glad we are married!

Today we are going to the National Museum of Naval Aviation and then out to lunch at the beach.

IV has taken the day off! And, DV has been looking forward to going to the "airplane museum" all week.

Actually, he's been looking forward to going there again since IV took him one Saturday when I was working at home.

This is a picture from one of IV's birthdays before we got married.... isn't he handsome!