Making and baking

Yesterday Grace had a Dad's Thanksgiving Feast at her school. She was very excited and chose her fluffy pink dress. I even fixed her hair!

I also made a chocolate cake. I always use the recipe on the Hershey's can--it is delicious. None came back (sadly) and Grace said she ate two pieces.

Today was the day to make our Thanksgiving food. I started with an new recipe I found in a Taste of the South magazine for cream cheese oat bars. I don't really like the name since it doesn't even mention the apple butter in them. Bake or Break typed out the recipe for you if you want it. I substituted pecans for the cashews because that sounded better. I look forward to trying these tomorrow! I know, this is a boring picture. I couldn't cut them up yet. Bake or Break has much better pics and a great review of it.

While this was cooking I washed up some dishes so I could use the sink again. Isaac wandered in so I recruited him to dry a few. I then started to dump out the bag of potatoes to peel and he wanted to help! This was great news. I handed him the new peeler and put the water on to boil. After watching him work on one, I decided I'd better grab a knife and help. We worked through the bag and dumped them into the boiling water. I was ready to start on the apple pie next, and asked him if he would like to peel the apples. He said yes again, no grumbles or anything. I handed him the apples and started working on the crust.

Yes, we added a bit extra. The recipe (my mom's) called for 6 cups and we used 8 apples. I think that is 8 cups. I didn't want a slumpy pie.
The recipe:

Judy’s Apple Pie

Pastry for 9 inch pie
6 c. sliced apples
1 c. sugar
2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
dash of nutmeg
dash of salt

1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. margarine
1/2 c. flour
1 c. oatmeal

Combine sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt; mix with slice apples.  Line 9 inch pie plate with pastry; fill with apple mixture.

Topping:  Put all topping ingredients in bowl and use pastry blender to mix.  Sprinkle over apple mixture.  Bake on bottom rack of oven at 425°F for 10 minutes, then at 375°F for 50 minutes.

While the pie cooked, I mixed up the mashed potatoes. For these I used Pioneer Woman's recipe except I used milk instead of half-and-half. Didn't want to buy that for 1/2 a cup. I'll cook them up in the morning and then head out to a day of food and family. Well, really two days of food and family.

After dinner, I helped Isaac make a basic chocolate pudding pie. Something for the kids, and for those who are on pumpkin overload. He'll pile on the cool whip and some sort of chopped chocolate or mini chips in the morning. He was a huge help today and really made the cooking and baking go so much smoother.

We had amazing, warm weather today so Grace and I headed out for a bike ride after lunch. We found one of the only fountains still running on campus for her.
Yes, she has two different shoes.

After the kids went to bed I worked a bit on Grace's quilt and then decided to finish up a scarf I was making for a Christmas gift. It is now done and tucked away in the box. It is orange. I call it hunter orange and try to ignore that it is also cowboy orange. No black stripes!
 See how it completely clashes with my floor? Even my house doesn't like orange.

Now I'm off to bed. I am putting the baby gate at the bottom of the stairs tonight, so that even if Chico the Chinchilla makes another escape, he won't come wake me up AGAIN. The game is fun and all but I need the sleep.