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"Cold" Day?!

I had just got it into my head to post about how hard it is to balance a full-time job while pursuing my creative dreams on this blog. I have so many ideas and projects in my head and yet that little thing called “real” work tends to get in the way of pursuing my ideas. Frustrating, and yet . . .
The universe must have heard my struggle because – SLAM! – school was cancelled today. (Actually, a “cold” day if you can believe it! Really? minus 2, cold? These people don’t hail from Minnesota as I do.)

Talk about trying to balance! Apparently, I needed to be reminded of my true priorities. When I first heard the announcement, all I could do was to think about how will I do this?? How will I get all my work done and do the post that I wanted to do and make the valentines hearts I had designed (hopefully coming soon) and take care of the kids. I have, on occasion, tried to do all these things at once by distracting them with movies, audio books, new books, coloring pages, etc. and it just ain’t that successful. I end up getting annoyed, frustrated and angry – yes, mama-yelling ensues.
Hmmm – I don’t like mama-yelling. Nothing replaces a totally focused, present mama. I decided to embrace it – why fight it? Work will still be there tomorrow. What could we do together? What about some family baking? There is no cold day that a tin of fresh-baked muffins can’t warm up.
Allie thinks all good things come from the mixer . . . I might just agree.

Lemon poppy seed muffins were on tap. I love the muffin recipe from Cook’s Illustrated The New Best Recipe (the recipe isn’t available online – phooey, but the cookbook really is amazing) I think the secret ingredient is the added 1 1/2 cups of plain yogurt – so moist!. Even with a series of botched recipe mistakes: 1 T of baking soda, instead of 1 t; sugar into the flour; dropping the eggs before creaming the butter and sugar! Seriously, maybe I wasn’t as present as I thought. BUT – they turned out great – and I had a super helper, too. Yes, that is a hand knit Debbie Bliss sweater from when she was 3! and a homemade tie dye t-shirt which are a blast to make with the kiddos! I adore that she still loves that sweater. It doesn’t look THAT small! – well at least that is what I tell myself.

There goes the tablespoon of baking soda – oops!

Patiently waiting kiddos . . .

And, enjoy!

We spent the rest of the day just hanging out, reading a Harry Potter novel, shoveling (see – not too cold!),

finger knitting (we’ve graduated to two colors!), embroidering socks (why not? – so much fun to experiment),
taking self-portraits with mama’s camera,
and lots of floor hockey (yes, tasting the muffin batter while playing hockey! – a very talented boy).
I even got some knitting done! (Yes, that is me in my pjs!) Thanks to my kiddos and the weather for such a great day!

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