My warm slippers are in here somewhere ahhhh… here they are, now I slip into my long snuggly soft housecoat. There.. I pad down the hallway and crank up the heat a bit. Making myself a cup of coffee, the radio guy announces it is minus 40 outside. I am sooo cold, it is hard for me to warm up…
All bundled up, I open the patio door and slip outside to my patio to enjoy my coffee and start writing this blog. I grab my speaker that is blue-toothed to my phone, which is connected to my radio station from home. The chill in the air is bearable because I am bundled up snug as a bug.
Lordy lordy.. will it ever warm up I wonder? Sure it is minus 40 at home in Canada, but it is freaking cold here in Arizona too.. Phoenix got snow yesterday and there was ice and frost in the foothills here one morning last week. Sure we don’t have to use an ice auger to get into our outdoor pool, but dam, it is hard to get motivated to venture there.
Now before you start thinking I’m a wusss (my son mocks me when I whine to him) my wardrobe here is made for sunshine! Sandals and flip flops, Capris and shorts, some light sweaters and a hoodie (bunny hug) for cooler evenings. Two months of this unusual cold weather here and I’m ready to come home.
I think climate change is real and maybe it is time to start re-thinking our global strategy. My personal strategy is to ascertain if this is an aberration or the new normal. Getting away from the cold did not work so well this time. Oh sure, I can pack differently.. warmer clothes and cranking up the furnace, yep, the furnace has been on non-stop since I arrived!
When at home, we dress for the cold.. here we live each day thinking it is going to warm up. Well it hasn’t, and that has me envying my cousins and a good friend that are in Mazatlán Mexico.. soaking up the sun. Our Canadian money goes farther there and my girlfriend takes great pleasure in texting me pictures of the her ocean front playground.
Perhaps you had a getaway to Vegas this past week? Well it snowed twice there and the airport was even closed down! This blog this morning is me whining about the weather, yes.. but it also has me rethinking my time spent here. For sure I am going to check out Mexico as an alternative, but maybe its time to check out a whole other continent?
Housesitting in another country? Swapping houses is also an option but who wants to live in minus 40 in Saskatoon Saskatchewan? Obviously not me! I have many talents (whining is only one of em) I can teach basic fruit and vegetable carving. Maybe a class on pole dancing.. my stripper name is Gladys Cherry-Blossom (a little humor.. or is it?).
We need to come up with something in our supposedly ‘Golden Years’ to keep us if not happy ever-after, then at least comfortable and ‘warm’ and engaged in life. We have such a wealth of knowledge accumulated from our time here.. it should be worth something, don’t you think? Trouble is, our own kids don’t even acknowledge our wise advice freely given.. so who is actually going to pay for it? Extra spending money is necessary for traveling..
Teaching could be fun, but where to teach what we know, which took us half a century to figure out.. ? Our child rearing advice is not welcomed by todays new moms. They subscribe to ‘self soothing’ (no picking up and cuddling when baby cries…) and have a timetable for everything. Lord help you if you want them overnight or even have them in your own vehicle.. trust me, its not gonna happen.
I always had a job or more correctly, my own business to run. So maybe my child rearing advice is not expert, but they did reach adulthood and with my driving skills too, I might add. A consulting job on child rearing is out of the question for most of us. How about cooking classes? The networks are flush with cooking shows, so that is a stupid idea.
I recently, a few years ago, learned how to bake buns from scratch in just two hours. My pride in doing so was sooo satisfying that I still marvel at each new batch of buns coming out of my oven! I would be thrilled to teach kids or men (yes I made my son do it once and my uncle) or teaching anyone actually, this basic skill.
AND this is how my blog is going to end. I can already smell the buns coming out of my oven! What better way to end my whining about the cold? The bonus for you is my two hour bun recipe.. aren’t you glad you read this? You will be if you bake some buns today.. please try it..
Two hour buns from start to ‘out of the oven’, virtually idiot proof.
This is how I do it, I am not a baker and don’t aspire to be. It has to be fast and simple or I won’t bother.
Seven ingredients including the water!…
Count off ingredients as you use them so you don’t forget.. its an age thang…lol
In one bowl measure seven cups of all purpose flour and two generous tablespoons of fast rising yeast. If yeast is old, buns won’t rise.
In another medium sized bowl measure two cups of hot water. Recipe calls for 3 cups of really warm water but mine always turned to cool by the time I added the rest of the ingredient’s, so now I do two cups and add the third cup of really hot water at the end.
In your two cups of really warm water add one teaspoon of salt and six tablespoons of sugar. I like to mix it until it dissolves then add seven tablespoons of oil .. any kind works .. add two eggs and mix again. Add the third cup of hot water and mix again.
Here is the best part .. I have no patience, so I dump the whole bowl of wet ingredients into the flour mixture and mix like crazy! You don’t want to dawdle but rather get all those ingredients meeting each other quickly so they can have that bonding experience!
Now hopefully you washed your hands because now we are going to play in the dough. You really need to get your hands in and knead it in. I always sprinkle more flour on the outer edges .. sometimes a lot if I used too much water.. it happens.
Knead for awhile .. this is different for everyone.. you need to incorporate all the ingredient’s and enough flour so it is not too sticky (approx. one to three minutes tops) Make a ball and let it rest in a warm place until it doubles in size. (you can oil the ball if you want and cover with a cloth) Sometimes its really fast other times it is slow.. don’t worry its not rocket science. A twenty or thirty minute nap won’t matter, one way or the other.
When double in size (or bigger.. IF YOU HAD A REALLY LONG NAP) cut off pieces and make into balls, rolls or however you want them to look. Place on your sheet pan (oiled) or parchment paper.. I prefer parchment paper. Let rise again and have another nap if you want. When they get double in size or looking really good, pop them into a 350 degree oven and set your timer for 25 minutes.
Some ovens are hotter or not as hot or whatever.. but if they are not brown enough I will bake for another five or ten minutes (I like my buns browner.. just sayin…) ALWAYS set the timer! As we age we get distracted and we don’t want you to burn your buns or worse yet start a fire and then they will take away your stove! I now understand why that happens.. just sayin. Brush your buns with oil, margarine or butter when they come out of the oven.. you want your buns to look good, right?
7 cups flour
2 tablespoons of fast rising yeast
mix dry together then in another bowl mix wet together .. then add wet to the dry.
3 cups really warm water (see above notes)
1 teaspoon of salt
6 tablespoons of sugar
7 tablespoons of oil