Wednesday, July 24, 2013

a royal baby.

You know what's interesting to me? As a person who is, as an adult, witnessing the first "royal birth" I can remember,  I am just amazed that this birth has captivated THE WORLD.

 Oh, I admit, I too, have been excited about the baby's birth. Curious, will it be a boy or a girl??? Oh wow! A boy!! I watched, I waited. And it struck me.

I saw the throngs of people lined up for days to see a glimpse of the baby. I watched them put announcements on golden easels.

Parades, accolades, flags, parties... it was endless the amount of attention this baby's birth has received.

Throughout this I was struck by this thought: and this baby is human. This "royal" baby is a normal, flawed, sinful, human.

Only "royal" because, somewhere in time, someone (another human or more likely humans) deemed it so.

But the actual King of Kings, the true royal, sinless, Son of God, was born in an animal stable. The stars announced His birth, the angels sang of it. The universe declared it, but overall humans (other than three wise men and some shepherds) did not parade, sing, announce, or celebrate the birth of the true Royal baby.

And the Son of God's birth was not announced on a golden easel.

He came humbly and quietly. The One to whom "royals" will bow to. The One to whom kings will bow, came very quietly. Very unassuming.

I find it truly interesting to view this birth through that lens.

Another interesting perspective:

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Bar Harbor, Down East Maine, and whoopie pies.

I have spent the last 15 years going to Maine during the summer. I spend various amounts of time (depending on life circumstances) on Mount Desert Island in Bar Harbor.

The very first time I went, my dad took me. He took our family many times. I began going with my husband, then added my kids, and with friends.

This last visit (June-early July) was the very best trip. It was gorgeous. It was peaceful. I felt myself breathe. I felt like I was closer to my dad up there. Like I was puttering around in his space. It was fantastic.

And I may or may not have sobbed my eyes out when my husband loaded my flailing body into the suburban, begging that he just leave me.

It's ok. I probably recovered my dignity within two or three hours.

I know I've been on a bit of a blogging hiatus, but what brings me back into the blogging world is my passionate love for Maine. And that includes a ridiculous, over the top, love for whoopie pies. It's a Maine thing.
Whoopie pies

I took the challenge and ate as many whoopie pies from every establishment on MDI as I could. (And yes, that's me you see on rock prairie road attempting to jog off the whoopie pie pounds)

But just try to find a good downeast style whoopie pie around here. And no, it's not the same thing as a moon pie!!!

I made it my personal mission to create the perfect Maine whoopie pie in my very hot and humid (wiping my tears) college station, kitchen. It's only 73 degrees in bar harbor right now. Not 101. Just sayin'

Well, after a day in my kitchen I did it. If I do say so myself. Here, my precious friends, is the very perfect Maine style, created in a southern kitchen, whoopie pie recipe. I take checks and cash as thanks...
Whoopie pies

For the cakes:
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
2 eggs yolks
5 tablespoons of cocoa powder
2 cups sifted flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla

Cream together the sugar and the shortening. Add the beaten yolks. Sift together the dry ingredients then add that mixture alternatively with the milk and vanilla. Drop equal spoonfuls onto a greased cookie sheet. (I mound these up as much as possible), leave room for them to spread. Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 10 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. With a spoon, add a good wallop of the filling (recipe below) to half the cakes. Put them together like sandwiches. Wrap individually in Saran Wrap. They get better with time! (Next day is best!!)
Whoopie pies

1 1/2 cups shortening
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 tsp vanilla
3 tablespoons milk
Good dash salt

Cream together shortening and sugar, add the other three ingredients. Beat the heck out of it until lite and fluffy.
Whoopie pies

Now, put three on the counter as peace offerings, eat two, and hide the rest. you're welcome.