Monday, January 28, 2008

But I do like the cold. I didn't say anything bad about the cold...I just said it was cold. Very, very cold.

Granted, even for aficionados like me, -38 is a little extreme. It's warmed up considerably. We're going to break freezing today. It's actually shockingly, almost unpleasantly warm.

However, we do still have 3 feet of snow on the ground - we got about 4 more inches last night. The facilities people have sculpted the snow into elaborate hills and bunkers alongside all of the sidewalks and in the parking lots that make it seem more like 4-5 feet of snow.

Fortunately it doesn't deter our students from their hard-earned right to park on campus.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

No really, I'm still here.

I'm just busy with the start of the new semester. And I've been a little under the weather with the Cold of Doom.

Speaking of cold, I now know what -30 F feels like...-38 F to be precise. (Conveniently -40 F = -40 C.)

It feels cold.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

RIP Rugbread

For the first time in 2o years, I failed.

I just could not build a simple, 24" 3D model of a viking ship in gingerbread in time for the party. I think it comes down to a combination of the fat (margerine instead of Crisco) and the relatively high humidity (50%!) None of this was made easier by the approach I used - I made a mold of the ship out of salt dough, covered it in tin foil and draped the gingerbread over that for baking. But really! That's the same way I made the America back in '01, and it worked out just fine.

ARGH. The whole process was very frustrating. I'm hoping for better luck next year.

Fortunately, the year wasn't a total wash for baking. Here's my sideboard of cookies ready to be shipped out.

I've been working my way through Betty Crocker's Cooky Cookbook (that's Cooky not Cookie). I haven't been adjusting the recipes for the altitude, and usually it hasn't been a problem.

However, Mary's Sugar Cookies are a sea-level only affair. Believe it or not, the chocolate coated blobs on the cooling racks are supposed to be snowmen. My personal favorites were the super-puffy angels we called the Angel of Obesity.