Friday, February 21, 2020

Grandma's Apple Cake

If there is one thing that brings back memories of my childhood, specifically at Thanksgiving or Christmas, it would be Grandma's Apple Cake. Grandma always had her irresistibly delicious apple cake on the dessert table next to the pumpkin and boysenberry pies. Though boysenberry is my all-time favorite pie, and Grandma made it perfectly, I simply could not resist that apple cake. (Who am I kidding...? I had both. With a scoop of vanilla ice cream too). 

This cake is like no other apple cake recipe I have tried. It is loaded with chunky bits off apple and walnuts and then drizzled with a yummy cream cheese icing. Grandma also added raisins. I ate them when I was ten; but now that I can make the cake myself, there will be no raisins. It's your call if you want to raisin it up. Either way, this cake will not disappoint. 


4 cups apples 
2 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
1 cup raisins (optional)
1/2 cup oil
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Peel and chop apples. Break eggs over apples and stir. Add sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, walnuts, raisins, and oil. Mix. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and salt. Add to apple mixture and blend well. The batter will be very thick and lumpy. Place batter in a greased and floured Bundt cake pan. Bake at 375 for one hour. 

Allow to cool for 30 minutes and then remove from pan. Drizzle with cream cheese icing and finely chopped walnuts.
Serves 12.

Per serving: 315 Calories; 12.1g fat; 4.6g protein; 49.5g carbohydrates.

Cream Cheese Icing

1/2 brick cream cheese
3-4 tbs milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbs powdered sugar

Mix all ingredients until thin enough to drizzle over cake. If too thick, continue to add milk, one teaspoon at a time, until you get the desired consistency.

This is Grandma and Grandpa B, with my mom.  All live in heaven now. I miss them terribly. I don't know where Grandma got this recipe but I know it's been in our family for decades. Actually, I think it came from Great Grandma who would have been making this cake in the 1930's. She probably got it from a church ladies' recipe book. Good guess anyway. 

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Negotiation Training 101

It was not my intent to write two similar stores about the same child back-to-back... but this child continually provides material that just begs me to blog. So, here we go. I give you Daniel and his "attorney speak" - the sequel.

It was a cold, rainy day and I was feeling somewhat lazy. Since procrastination is my super-power, I had allowed the dishes to pile up and had no interest in removing my bottom from the sofa in order to remedy the situation. Then I had this brilliant idea!!!  I could get one of the boys to do the dishes. Certainly they can be bribed, I thought. So I prepared a text for all the boys which offered "things of monetary value" in exchange for doing the dishes. And then I waited.

Moments later I received a reply from Daniel. (Of course it was Daniel. The other two just ignore such texts.) His response did not disappoint.

Ok... so one child has taken the bait, I thought.  I'm certain we can come to an agreement which allows me to continue binge watching "The Good Place", while my dishes disappear. And so negotiations began.  With an ear-to-ear grin, I replied, "both". Seconds later I received another text.

The current stock market?!?!  Who is this child? 
I didn't want to open negotiations by giving him an idea of what I was willing to pay, so I replied in such a way as to draw out his price without giving away my position.

Clearly he didn't want to give his price away either. Excellent, my son. Hold your cards close and wait for the offer.  

There we go! He has named his price. 

Here's your valid point right here, kid!

Listen, I know $10.00 for doing the dishes is pretty steep, however, you must understand the following:

         1) I found this entire negotiation highly amusing and 
         2) On this particular day I really was THAT lazy.

The negotiations continued:



So we came to an agreement. $11 USD and a mint, with the labor fee waived in this specially priced package. Clearly I was TAKEN, but again, the entertainment value alone was worth the cash. Getting the dishes done was just a bonus.

And so... my lazy butt sat on the sofa while my ultra-brilliant son did the dishes. I savored the knowledge that it is unlikely anyone will ever be able to take advantage of my son. Smart little booger that he is.

And for my critics who think a child should never be paid to do "household chores": Y'all need to lighten up. Sometimes it's okay to be silly with the kids. He learned the very useful skill of negotiation, and I got my dishes done. PLUS:  when all is said and done... I'm not sure I actually paid him. And listen, if he doesn't remember, I don't see why I need to. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

I Live With a Thirteen-Year-Old Attorney

My life is a circus. Full Stop!  That is all. 

Some day's I'm not even sure who wears the ring-master hat in this household; though I'm pretty sure the monkeys are in charge quite often. But it's okay because my monkeys are smart little boogers and they entertain me greatly. Case in point:

Every two weeks I spend Sunday and Monday in frantic preparation for the housekeeper's visit on Tuesday. I make every attempt to pick up all the stuff, which includes finishing all laundry. Sometimes I fail in this area and the laundry room floor cannot be mopped for months. The laundry.... OY... it never ends! EVER!

After such an effort to clear out the laundry room, it ticks me off beyond belief when someone decides to bring down their laundry on Monday night. This compelled me to send Army Guy a text like this:

Just two hours before the arrival of awesome housekeeper. I was LIVID!

So this week I decided to be proactive and send out an announcement to the entire family on Sunday night.

Enter Daniel, my genius (smart-@$$) 13-year-old child who, I swear, was born to be an attorney.

This prompted a lively conversation between Daniel, his dad and I. This child is too intelligent for his own good.  Anyway... there was a discussion on dictatorships, sedition, treason and the idea of a revolution with the ultimate goal of a coup to overthrow the government.  To which I replied:

And then Army Guy Posted:

This conversation concluded with the entire idea of a revolution dying a slow, silent death to the soundtrack of crickets chirping in B minor. 

And that’s how you stop a revolution!

Mommy for the win!

Note to self: it really IS time to teach these boogers how to do their own laundry. (Muahahaha)

Copywrite 2018 - Loretta Monroe