23 December 2010

hard crack

we made lollipops!

making hard candy is pretty simple. just a few ingredients, brought to the "hard-crack" stage (300 degrees F) and then poured into a candy mold.

the trick is to avoid stirring the mixture, once it starts boiling (something do do with sugar crystals?). just let it sit there and bubble until it gets to 300. it does take a while. once you get there, remove from heat, add your flavoring (in our case, vanilla-cosmo's request) and then pour before it cools down.

homemade hard candy that looks, feels and tastes like store-bought, makes for one happy little boy!

certainly not nutritious, but tons of fun for everyone.

16 December 2010


oh dear. the holidays are upon us, and i had really hoped to post something about cosmo's birthday before now. he turned five in november. that number always loomed, in my mind, as a huge milestone. it's the point where they move into official kid-ness. not a baby anymore, not a toddler anymore, and barely even a pre-schooler.

cosmo had a wonderful birthday. we had a nice after-school party for him, with 5 kids he chose to invite. it was hard to let go, and let him decide, but since he had opinions, and he doesn't always express preferences, i thought it was important to honor his choices...even if it meant some of my dear friends' children were not invited. gulp.

we had a low-key party, where the most exciting part turned out to be chasing each other around with blow-out noise-maker-party-favor-thingies. talk about cheap thrills! the next day, he came down with strep. the scarlet fever strain. poor little thing. he was mostly couch-ridden through thanksgiving, but was all better in time to go to TX, for an early xmas with nani and family.

this also marks the fifth year of this blog.
five years.
'nuf said.

so far, my favorite thing about five-year-olds is the helpfulness. i was expecting this, or at least hoping for it, and, remarkably, it arrived, like clock work. cosmo has a new found interest in helping out, and the competence to actually BE helpful. i will savor this while it lasts.