Second Chances Update

Just a quick update on the cake auction. Twenty-five cakes, made by students, mothers, grandma’s and aunts were delivered to the highest bidders.

A licensed auctioneer calls out to the crowd.
This pretty cake was a Butter Pecan decorated with butter cream icing hydrangeas.
Little piggies wallowing in a mud hole cake. Cute, cute!


This was my cake: Chocolate Praline Avalanche. Not pretty to look at, but really pretty to eat!
Bidder #5 won my cake, with a $400 check, of course.

The auction is a much anticipated event each year and all proceeds go to the youth to send them to camp.



Second Tries

Chocolate on Chocolate Pecan Avalanche Cake: I am making this three layer dream for a young fellow in the youth group. He needed someone to bake a cake for him for the annual cake auction tomorrow night, so I volunteered. Three layers of dark chocolate cake, hiding in a blanket of chocolate butter cream icing and a tumble of honey pralines cascading over the top. Well, it should have pralines…

My first attempt at dropping a batch of honey pralines turned out wrong tonight. Can’t really tell you what I didn’t do right. I don’t know, maybe I didn’t cook the concoction long enough or my pecans weren’t cold. Cold pecans is a trick of mine; it cuts down on how long you have to beat the candy before dropping the pralines.

Thank goodness I had more evaporated milk, sugar and pecans. Ten dollars worth of pecans in that first botched batch of pralines. Ugh! I cleaned up my three quart pot and started over. Second try was perfect- creamy, glistening mounds of pecan laden sugar. Divine!

Okay, here’s your life lesson (I know you were expecting one): we’re all given a chance to be redeemed. No matter how much of a wasted, sticky mess we can make of things, there’s a way out. First we have to admit that we’ve screwed up. Next we need to clean up-do some apologizing and making amends. Last step is to start over and try again, learning from our mistake, so as not to repeat it. Second tries can be really sweet, with lessons learned.

Sticky pralines just wouldn’t set up
Learned from my mistake and the second batch was perfect. Boxed them up to put on the cake tomorrow night. Taped the boxes closed to keep taste testers at bay.
I was not throwing away all that sugar and pecans, not to mention Butter! I scraped them up and squished them down into a greased casserole dish. Hoping they set up and can be cut like fudge tomorrow.

Blessings from the Exile’s Kitchen and happy second tries.

Good-bye Ringlets

College man came home last night and a miracle happened. He asked for a hair cut. Praise the Lord! He went to a private academy kindergarten through 12th grade and had to be neat and uniformed the whole thirteen years. So he was expressing his freedom this year, trying a different look with his hair and clothes. When he was leaving to go back to school last weekend, after Easter break, he put his favorite hat on – or he tried to. The little newsboy cap just would not sit securely over his brown ringlets. College man checked his reflection in his truck window  and laughed as he flipped his curls around.

“Maybe next week you could give me a haircut,” he said.

Now, I have suggested he get a haircut or at least a trim many times over the last year, but he would just smile and brush off my coaxing. I quit asking and really didn’t think he was serious. So, I was surprised when he got up this morning and pointed to his fluffy head and said, ” You ready? You got time to cut my hair?”

“Now, you remember, I only know how to do one kind of haircut,” I answered.

“Yeah,” he replied with a smile and nod. “Buzz it.”

Okie dokie, off to the kitchen we went. Chair in the middle of the floor, clippers primed and ready.

Bye-bye ringlets.
A year’s growth of curls.
Still cutting. I only know how to do one hair cut. Buzzzzz
There he is. Look at those dimples.
Sable curls look like someone dropped their wig on the floor.

Side note:

Do you see the pictures on the refrigerator? Family members have given my mother pictures of their kids and grandkids for decades. A family album on the frig front. Grandkids and great-grands have gifted her with artwork, too. Evidence that the kitchen is the heart of the home.

Blessings from the Exile’s Kitchen.