This blog is my place to vent and share resources with other parents of children of trauma. I try to be open and honest about my feelings in order to help others know they are not alone. Therapeutic parenting of adopted teenagers with RAD and other severe mental illnesses and issues (plus "neurotypical" teens) , is not easy, and there are time when I say what I feel... at the moment. We're all human!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Adventures in Cooking

I never seem to have a camera around, so you guys are just going to have to settle for "way back when" pictures! The boy was sooo much cuter then! (Just kidding - he's still way too adorable!)

So yesterday I was tired and cranky and didn't feel like dealing with anything at all. Hubby was judging a business plan competition and wasn't going to get home until after 11pm. I sat down at my computer and started making the pictures for the homemade cinnamon roll tree for my friend. It took a lot longer than I thought I would, but that's the advantage of having older children right?! They don't need constant supervision (as long as they're all in the house, all downstairs where I can hear them, and I'm close enough that I can lean out of my computer cubby under the stairs and handle anything desperate).

Meanwhile, Kitty and Ponito want to make cookies, and Bob wants to make dinner so she can decide what we're going to have. Finally I give my permission as long as I have veto power (and can continue working at my computer - which is right next to the kitchen).

Kitty and Ponito dive into a children's cookie cookbook I have that's full of lots of cutely shaped cookies. Some of them are vetoed because one of them doesn't like it. Some are vetoed based on missing ingredients. Finally they agree on ladybug cookies (?!). I toss out a veto because black and red icing are almost impossible to "make" using food coloring. They consult and come up with a compromise. Cream cheese frosting dyed red (turned out pink of course) and chocolate icing for the spots. in the search for icing recipes they switch cookbooks (unbeknownst to me) and apparently finds one they like and have the ingredients for in Daddy's gourmet cookbook.

Kitty starts on the cookies (they have cornmeal in them?!).
Ponito starts on the chocolate fondant icing! He's following the directions well, but needs to boil water on the stove. He gives me a saucepan with a quarter inch of water in it (I do all stove top cooking). Of course it boils almost immediately. I ask him what he would like me to do with it as he's frantically stirring chocolate chips and butter with a wisk "until they melt" (which of course isn't going to happen with no heat!). He tells me to pour it in the chip mix. This doesn't sound right so I check the recipe (discovering the cookbook change). He is supposed to boil about an inch ("that's about an inch isn't it Mommy?") of water in the saucepan and melt the chocolate mix in a pot on top. I had him reread that section of the recipe and he figured it out. Then I mixed the chocolate. He finished the recipe. It was bitter, but not too bad. We didn't have confectioner's sugar which I believe was in one of the icing recipes (not sure which one), so I'm sure he made a substitution (or left it out).

Kitty put her 12 cookies (was supposed to make 24) into the oven, and helped Ponito with the cream cheese frosting they'd chosen for the "red" frosting. We had one ancient sealed package of fat-free cream cheese in the fridge. A little while later she pulled out the cookies which had melted - growing bigger and were now dripping off the cookie sheet. When she tried to put them back in the oven they all slid on the overly Pam coated cookie sheet into a smoosh at the back of the cookie sheet and globbed off the end to land in a smoky mess on the bottom of the oven.

*Heavy sigh* I got up - stopped Kitty's hysterics - and rescued the cookies. I tried to divide them back into real cookie shapes - using the spatula, but there was still apparently too much dough and once back in the oven they melted back into one solid sheet. But at least they weren't all on the back half of the cookie sheet and didn't drip on the bottom of the oven - much. They were left in a little too long and were brown and crispy, but at least not burnt. (Don't worry, we still had plenty of smoke from the mess on the bottom of the oven). So of course the cream cheese frosting never got stiff so they just poured it on, and then dotted a small portion of the chocolate on the top.

By now it's dinner time. We all stop to eat Bob's gourmet meal of 2 boxes of macaroni and cheese with a handful of green beans and 1! cut up hot dog in it?! This lasted about 10 seconds and everyone was still hungry (I reheated some leftover rice and threw some cheese in it - What?! It was better than starving! - which they obviously weren't since no one ate the rice). Kitty insisted that no one could eat the cookies - they were for tomorrow's afternoon snack. Of course by morning they were half gone, and I had to stop her from putting the other half in a bag to take to school for lunch (don't even get me started about the Lunch Wars!).

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