July 2008

Here’s my review on my own camping trip this vacation!  It was great!  When I was little we used to go camping all the time and I just loved it!  This time, even though I was a ‘bit’ older was no different!  Sadly, it was VERY humid, and VERY hot and wherever we went, it felt like you were wet.  It was a weird feeling…I had never really experience humidity that bad.  Especially at night.  And it rained…and it stormed.  But it was always at night or about dinner time, so while we were sightseeing it was clear and sunny so that’s good!  And we discovered that the new pop up my brother got is VERY VERY VERY waterproof!  We left Monday and we went to the Natural Bridge Area.  We went to the Natural Bridge Zoo, the Natural Bridge Toy Museum.  I highly recommend the zoo.  It was a lot of fun, very clean, and very friendly.  It has been awhile since we all had been to a zoo and we decided to go.  Very glad we did!  My favorites were the tigers!  They are just larger versions of my Oliver!  I was not overly impressed with the Toy Museum.  Maybe it was just me, but it wasn’t all that great, and definitely not worth the price, like the zoo.  Tuesday, we traveled about an hour and a half or so from our campsite (stops for food, gas, etc included) to Orange County to Montpelier.  This is James Madison’s home.  I was not overly thrilled in going. I had been when I was younger and it was still the way the DuPont’s had it…a big pink house.  The tours were self guided and it was just boring to me.  I was younger then though.  But this trip was just amazing!  I felt like I was standing in history itslef!  I highly recommended it!  We had an awesome, VERY informative tour guide.  I think her name was Jayne…THANK YOU!  It is being restored to James Madison’s original way and it was very neat!!  It’s well worth the money and time!  Then Wednesday, we were all tired…it was still wet, and we just decided to come on home.  We had planned to stay longer but just didn’t.  We came towards home.  We hikes some along the James River.  It was a good time!  We got home and was greeted with a ‘happy to see us’ Oliver and for the rest of the week we just sort of relaxed and did local things.  That was really nice.  We all just needed to relax I think! 

I hope you found this informative.  If you have more questions about the places, I’ll be happy to try and answer!


WOW!  This is SO good!  I found this in my Betty Crocker Cookbook and I had never even noticed it before!  Wow, it’s just amazingly good!  It was fun to make after a vacation of camping and cooking out!  Enjoy!

1 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons baking cocoa

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup milk

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup chopped nuts, if desired {i skipped this and it was still great! 🙂 }

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 cup baking cocoa

1 3/4 cup VERY hot water (I used hot water from the coffee maker)

How to:

Heat oven to 350 F.

Mix flour, granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons cocoa, the baking powder and salt in UNGREASED square pan.  {note: They say 9x9x2, but I only have an 8x8x2 and it did just fine.}  Mix in oil, milk and vanilla with a fork until it’s smooth.  Stir in nuts.  Spread across pan.  {I mixed all of this in the pan…very easy cleanup that way..AND no wasted yummyness in that extra pan!}

Sprinkle the brown sugar and 1/4 cup cocoa over the batter and then pour the water over the batter evenly  Careful when you carry it to bake, because the pan can become hot.

Bake it about 40 minutes or until the top is dry. {Mine was done in 20-30 minutes.}

I let it cool awhile and then spooned it into dishes with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top!  The bottom layer will be very liquidy…and then turn to almost a pudding…you haven’t done a thing wrong!! 

Enjoy!  I will try and get a picture up here soon! 

❤   BaKeRiStA


Ah yes, I must leave you with a final “rant” before I leave for vacation next week!  But first off, let me say HAPPY 4TH OF JULY! And I want to send a sincere thank you to all of those who fought and are still fighting for our freedom.  THANK YOU.  As you get together with your family for the cookouts or go to see fireworks, remember them. 

So yes, we are leaving next week to go CAMPING!  yay!  I cannot wait!  So yes, I will be roughing it without my internet and cell phone!  GASPS!  I think the most I’ll miss is all my friends and definitely all the “picking on” I get on a daily basis.  But I’m very excited!  We, like most families, are not going to travel far, due to the high gas prices, etc, but we need to get away and this is a FUN and CHEAP way to get out.  And sorry to you beach lovers, but that to me is a waste of money.  I go to my creek or to a lake or even pool if I need the feel of that water.  🙂  And come on, it’s like 100+ HUMID degrees…ICK…yes, ICK to me!  Yes, I’m only 18 and I have strong views on saving money too! 

So, my Saran Wrap rant.  I’ll get to it finally.  This is ONE of the few things that I do not accept cheaper imitations.  This stuff is impossible if you buy the off brand.  Honestly!  It becomes a sticky glob and then you end up probably having to buy more.  Well…lately my NAME BRAND saran wrap has NOT been good AT ALL..   It won’t cut, it blobs up and I end up having to spend forever straightening it back out.  I do believe this is our 2nd box like this.  What is going on?  Is there at some point where the Saran Wrap makers had to make it cheaper because of gas prices.  *sigh*  I’m gonna cry now…what is the world coming to!  But I was just wondering if anyone else has noticed this or is it just me?  Or maybe it was just a bad batch.  Or maybe they just don’t like me?  🙂 naw!

I leave you with that thought till I get back! 

Everyone have a FUN AND SAFE 4th and I’ll talk to you again soon!  ~*bakerista*~

Yay! I find the time to update this a bit!  So let me first off talk some baking.  Most of you who cook know that summer time is not the best time to do baking.  So I haven’t been…it’s just been way too hot.  But last night, we got some heavy rain and it cooled off to 65 ish or so and it was very comfortable.  So I made some chocolate chip cookies!  But…as soon as they hit the oven they spread so bad all over the pan.  I was very disappointed but after I “scraped” them off the pan they turned into little gooey “squares”.  I tasted them, and they were divine!  VERY GOOD…actually some of the best chocolate chip “cookies” I’ve ever tasted!  So I’m very satisfied!  Come by my work today if you are interested in tasting one of these interesting treats!  They are here!

And today I’m getting my hair cut again…nothing drastic really.  Just a trim of my last drasticness!  Yes, if you have talked to me recently I probably told you that I was getting my hair dyed blonde…and yes…that was a lie!  Hehe!  I’m quite sure all of you knew that already though! 😉  Just the enjoyment of the gasps!  But no, I have nothing against blondes, it’s just that I KNOW that if I did do that, my life would be 10x “miserable” here at work.  AH yes, work…after many water fights during work hours, my father told us no more horseplay or we’d ALL be in trouble…hehe…*evil grin* SO we’ve all been nice little angels.  Aside from the fact that I was the “catch of the day” on the lift all the way to the ceiling and the pluggy thing was UNPLUGGED by a certain someone!  And yesterday…*sigh* as I was innocently vacuuming something wet and hard wacked me in the forehead…and as water was DRIPPING down my face, I had no idea “what had hit me”. Till I turned around and saw SOMEONE about to fall in the floor laughing!  Ah yes, the embarrassment never ends. And yes, it was only an innocent SOPPING WET PAPER TOWEL!! But I tell you, revenge will be sweet!  And horseplay does not count when they go to the bathroom and get there shirt wet and then claim I did it! 

And for your information…weedeaters don’t come with tires, and there is no such thing as a hard tire…*SIGH*  that line will come in handy to keep you from embarassment also!

Yes, this is only a TASTE of what I go through each day.  And let me tell you, I will NOT be making any more trips to Bath & Body Works to waste money on those yummy scents.  Because I have never heard so many MEAN jokes about my “stench”.  Yes, I’ve gone back to the “el cheapo” unscented lotion to save myself from the fake coughing, gagging, and annoyance!

So maybe after you have wasted your time reading all this, MAYBE you learned something?  Or at least you laughed!  I KNOW YOU DID! 

Have a great day!  😀