Saturday, October 24, 2015

apples and chocolate and caramel

Dan's parents have a couple apple trees, so the last couple years we have made a day of picking, cleaning and juicing apples. And although this year's crop was only half of last year's, we still had many, many apples. 

Here, the kitchen is overflowing with apples...and this isn't even half.

The process of picking, washing and juicing the apples takes the day, but everyone seems to have fun... especially these two cousins who had a fun time "helping" put the apples in the juicer.

During our process of cleaning the apples, we always save the really nice-looking ones for fresh eating. This provides us all with an abundant amount of apples for eating. And while they are delicious to eat on their own, I wanted to switch it up a bit and make a tasty treat with some. For a special treat during a family movie night this weekend we made caramel and chocolate-covered apple slices and I must say, they were quite the treat.

We sliced up a couple apples and laid them on a plate. Then I melted some chocolate chips and warmed up some caramel. We put the caramel in a plastic baggie and cut a tiny hole in the corner and squeezed the caramel onto the apples to get a "drizzle" effect. (I have attempted this before by just spooning it on, and it comes out in globs and doesn't work out as well that way). I did the same with the melted chocolate as well. The covered slices were then placed in the refrigerator for about a half hour to allow the chocolate to cool and harden a bit. (On our first attempt we ate the apple slices while the chocolate was still warm and it didn't taste as good as when it's cooled and hardened.)

There was some chocolate left over and as not to let it go to waste, we covered some Oreos with it

And drizzled it straight into the mouths of a couple little kiddos.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

back yard progress | painting the shed

So, we have been working on our backyard since April. Seems like a lot longer than that. This has been a long process. Seven months people and we're still not done. But, we're getting there and this weather is pushing us to get it done sooner than later. For one, we needed to get it painted before it got too cold that we couldn't paint due to it not drying correctly in cold weather and second, as I've mentioned before, Dan would like to park in the garage again before winter.

Case in point:

This is how our garage has looked all Spring and Summer. As maybe you can see in the picture, we even started parking the van over stuff lying on the floor.

The utility shed is now built and we spent all day Saturday painting the siding. I realize I have never painted so much area with just a brush (rather than a roller). Seriously you guys, I was sore from painting! Anyway, we got the siding painted and need to just finish up painting the trim and doors.

rear view of the shed...and me

back side of the shed