the chocolate covered strawberry pie / updates

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view from above

One of the unexpected ways that 2016 started was when I crashed my 12-year-old Toyota Corolla. Nobody was hurt, thankfully, but my car didn’t make it through. It was one of those things that shouldn’t make you feel sad, because after all, its just a car. But it was paid for, and it got me from point A to point B without much fuss and reasonable gas mileage. Plus, I was totally unprepared for the change. I was used to my car. It has quirks and dents, but we understood each other. It met my needs and I sort of met its needs. And we said goodbye so impersonally in the junkyard where I cleaned out 8ish years of notes, burned CDs, checkbooks from closed bank accounts, pens, and gum wrappers. I even discovered a photo of the previous owners in the glove compartment. It was John and Sherri, circa 1996, with lots of teased hair and unfortunate mustaches and awkward fitting denim. A treasure.

Anyway. So began the treacherous journey of car shopping. We knew that our cars were nearing the end of their lives, and we had discussed the possibility of one day buying something else, but it was definitely not on our radar. New cars are luxury items. For the fancy and well-established adult. And most days, I definitely don’t feel fancy, and I certainly don’t feel like a well-established adult. More like an pseudo adult barely keeping up with life.

To make a long story short, we decided to get a Subaru Forester. And oh man. I definitely feel fancy now. Did you know that cars now have seat warmers? And back up cameras? and CD players that work?? Not to mention fancy blue tooth and a million different other little things that make me feel like I’m driving a space ship, at least compared to my old ride. I know you’re only here for the food, but I cannot recommend the Forester enough. It feels so safe, I have great visibility when I’m driving, it’s big enough to haul stuff in without feeling like I’m driving a tank. And its supposed to be good in all types of weather and terrain, which is great because driving in JXN MS is like going off road, every day.

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i-woke-up-like-this cake / flourless chocolate torte

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You know how in movies, and maybe sometimes in real life, a lady will show up dressed in something cute, looking Veela status amazing, get complimented on it, then she’ll giggle-laugh and say “oh this old thing!” ? Maybe she’ll even throw in a casual hair flip or hand wave. And she’s being all nonchalant and Beyoncé like “I woke up like this” and you KNOW she didn’t wake up like that and just throw something on. You know she spent hours in the bathroom grooming, buffing, scrubbing, tweezing, shaving and exfoliating. You know she spent hundreds of dollars at the gym, running and cycling and ab-crunching. You also know that she went to about 18 different boutiques to find “this old thing” that she “just threw on”. You just know. Unless you’re a dude, and then you probably don’t know. Believe me, this kind of charade is a thing.

Unless. Maybe she really did just wake up like that and throw on something old and still look amazing. Perhaps she’s distantly descended from the same ancestors as Gisele or Taylor and she was born with model thin legs, perfect skin and Michelle Obama arms. And she makes you question all that time and money you spent in the bathroom, at the gym and in all those boutiques.

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This cake is like that. It feels fancy. It easily impresses others. You taste it, and you think WhoaThis took hours to make. Its dark and smooth. The chocolate melts in your mouth like fudge, but without being overpoweringly sweet. It’s decadent. It’s fancy enough for a wedding, but it’s not so fancy that you can’t serve it for a birthday or a book club.

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