Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Beautiful Story

I was really touched today by an interview the Today Show had with the parents of a 6 year old girl who died of cancer.

This beautiful child, without her parents knowing, had been cutting out paper hearts and writing love notes on them.  She tucked them away in books, under furniture, behind photo frames. . .all written to her friends, family, pets.  Her parents are still finding them around their house, and right now have three boxes full of these handwritten love notes.

I find this to be deeply profound. . .I'm not necessarily a religious person, but reading this I have to believe that God gave her enough love for a lifetime, but not enough life to use it up.  She had just a few short years to dole out all the love and inspiration that she could, and her outlet was these simple paper hearts.

Something to think about on those days when you are questioning your faith in life. . .

Pumpkin Bars

I love love love to cook; the kitchen is definitely one place in this world where I am in my element.
In honor of fall, my favorite October treat: Pumpkin Bars.  I made these a few years ago, and staring at the recipe it became obvious that they were lacking something.  The addition of semi-sweet chocolate chips is my doing, and it brings 'yummy' to 'simply amazing'.  Don't turn up your nose until you try it!  

 These are super easy to make, a huge hit at parties, and extremely addictive.  Most ingredients are pantry staples, with the exception of the canned pumpkin and chocolate chips.

I recommend using high-quality name brand pumpkin and chocolate for these!

2 cups all-purpose flour (I always use unbleached)
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cloves
4 beaten eggs
1 15-ounce can of pumpkin (get a high-quality brand, make sure it's pure pumpkin and NOT pumpkin pie mix! ! ! !)
1 cup cooking oil (you can substitute plain applesauce for a low-fat version)
and the secret ingredient:
1 package of semi-sweet Girhadelli chocolate chips
**Note:  you can substitute 2 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice for the cinnamon and cloves if you wish.
Preheat oven to 350.  If you used applesauce instead of oil, grease your pan.  If you used oil, do not grease the pan. I use a 11 x 15 glass pan (large cake/baking pan).  You can probably use a slightly smaller one if you don't have a large one.
In a large bowl stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and cloves.  Stir in the beaten eggs, pumpkin, and oil/applesauce until combined.
Fold in the chocolate chips :)
Spread into your baking pan, and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Snow Day!

Well my husband is going to have a devil of a time getting home today.  I love a good snow day, but can't truly enjoy it until I know that he is home and not out trying to battle ski and commerce traffic on a busy mountain highway.

I woke up this morning to winter wonderland: the snow has been coming down non-stop since last night.  Right now our deck has 10" - 15" or more in places. . .fluffy, white, beautiful snow. . .

Chloe loves it too - she has to plow through anything over 6", and bounds up and down to make her way

Meanwhile, I'll just try and stay warm.  I'm sacrificing looking cute in the name of staying cozy: I have on two shirts, a fleece vest, fuzzy socks, and my much-too-big blue track pants.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


Welcome to the Loring Blog!

My husband and I got married on July 12th, 2009. This blog is my inspiration: an outlet for our nesting, work, and amazing relationship!