Saturday, January 16, 2010

A White Christmas

It was such a great Christmas season. I realized that Thad and I are both sentimental and sorta cheesy when it comes to Christmas. We loved to be home by the tree and watch Christmas movies. So when the season drew to a close and the tree came down, it was sad for us both. So I thought we could re-visit the season with pics from our trip home to Utah. Enjoy!

Quentin and I ready to go snowshoeing on Christmas Eve.

Thad, Cavet and Quentin behind my parents house

Thad, Cavet and I snowshoeing up Millville Canyon

Thad, Henry and I at the Millers' Live Nativity on Christmas Eve

Grandma, Max and Mimi at Hardware Ranch

The Elk feeding

We went skiing at Beaver Moutain which is about an hour east of Logan. Here is Thad striking his skiiing pose. It was tons of fun, just cold.

What a cute sporty couple (Skiiing at Beaver Mountain)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Million Dollar Cookies (Chocolate Chip Cookies)

I work at a bank where things can get slow. When this happens, which is often and I want to make the time go by a little faster, I browse food blogs and the Foodnetwork for new recipes. I love to just read the recipes and see what ingredients the authors use. Enjoying cooking and baking is something I have discovered about myself recently. When I was single, I was always grabbing food to go or eating out with friends. It was never fun to cook for one. Another reason I love to cook is because of my mom. She has always been a great cook and has been known in the land for her cooking abilities. She is an adventurous cook, who is always trying new recipes and uses no boxed ingredients (i.e. brownie mixes, cake mixes, etc.), everything is homemade. When she was a little girl she often times had to cook for herself, so she has had many years to perfect the art of cooking. I have often described the way my mom showed and shows us love is through her food she makes us and so I aspire to be half the cook my mom is!

Thad loves it when I bake. He is my best taste tester and critic. He asks me to make this recipe at least every couple of weeks and swears these are the best chocolate chip cookies he has ever had. It is a simple recipe but so good. I love this recipe because of the tecture of the cookie. It is a fluffy and dense cookie and I like to add coconut and pecans to give the cookie an even richer taste.

Million Dollar Cookies (Chocolate Chip Cookies)

¾ cup white sugar
¾ cup brown sugar
¾ cup butter (1 1/2 cubes)
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
2 ½ cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
pinch of salt
6 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
6 oz. pecans
Fresh coconut to taste (I do 1/2 cup)

Cream butter with sugars, preferably with a fork. I try to have the butter at room temperature for a better consistency in the cookie. Add egg. Combine soda, salt and flour; add to sugar mixture along with vanilla. Mix in pecans and chocolate and roughly a half cup of fresh coconut to the mixture, dough will be a little dry. Press into patties ¾ inch thick, the bigger you make them the better. Bake at 375 for 12-13 minutes. Half-way through the baking time, I rotate the cookie sheet so that they are evenly brown. Don’t over cook, I feel the key to a good cookie is how it is baked, so watch them closely! (My mom likes making them on a baking stone).

These are sure to be a delight and household favorite and hard to eat just one, so dieters beware. Enjoy!

Monday, January 11, 2010

January Celebrations........

Last Thursday we were able to celebrate too very special events, the birth day of Thad and Alabama winning the BCS National Championship. The game was a good one and come the 4th quarter we were only ahead by three points and I had to put my head down and not look, I could not imagine Bama loosing on Thad's birthday, especially when a win was all he wanted for his birthday.

For Thad's birthday he wanted an Alabama birthday cake, so I made him a scripted "A" cake and another Chocolate cake that was more edible since the "A" cake had so much red food coloring in the frosting that it would have stained every one's teeth. We were able go over the Sprayberry's home and watch the game and enjoyed parched peanuts, Pigg Shack BBQ and Thad's favorite dip that Caroline makes. In the end we returned home late Thursday night after a win by Alabama, 37-21, which a win for Bama equaled a great birthday for Thadeus.

Then On Saturday Thad and I were out running errands and just happened to stop at the Tuscaloosa Wal-mart. There was a large crowd of people in the middle of the store and a news camera, so I went over to investigate. It turned out that the BCS Trophy that was passed around by the players and that Saban held up as the BCS Champions, was displayed at Wal-mart for the day. Thad and I waited in line and were able to get our picture taken with the $30,000 dollar Waterford Crystal Trophy, a rare and cool opportunity.

Roll Tide Everyone!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Long overdue..........

Ok so it has been too long since I have made a post and I am sorry for that. It just seemed like Brooke had baby Henry and then the rest of summer and fall zoomed by too fast for me to even think about writing anything. One of my new years resolutions is to be a better blogger so that my family and friends who aren't so close can be kept up to date on our life in T-town. I also want this blog to be a cooking blog. Thad will tell you that my favorite thing to do is hang out in the kitchen and bake. I also love, when I am bored, to surf food blogs, read recipes and then print them off (I must have a stack of over 200 recipes I want to try).

Thad and I were blessed to be able to spend Christmas with my family in Utah. It was fun to have a white Christmas and be a part of all the Nelson traditions which usually involves good food. We had Fondue, Crab, Brie, Raclette, orange rolls, smoked salmon and so much more. I seriously gained 7 pounds while I was home. We enjoyed some skiing, snow shoeing, hanging out with my nephews and niece and just soaked up time at home. Sigh. It was a great time and I already miss my little kiddies.

After a week in Millville we ventured home to Alabama and went straight to Haleyville (Thad's hometown) to spend time with his family. Joseph, Patsy and the kids were in town and Terri's kids also ventured up to play with the cousins. We had a full house and it was fun to be all together because it rarely happens.

As we begin the New Year I am so thankful for all the great people in my life and a warm and cozy roof over my head. We are blessed. Happy 2010 ya'll!