Category Archives: Random thoughts

Pumpkin Bread!

Today I am thankful for my delicious and no-fail pumpkin bread!  I make this bread every year at least once (if not more) once we get into pumpkin season (a.k.a. Autumn).  It is easy to take to potlucks and always turns out really moist, freezes well, and is just basically really good.

I made my famous pumpkin bread yesterday for a baby shower.  I decided to be fancier this year and add chocolate chips.  What a brilliant idea!!  I can’t believe I’ve been making this stuff for years and just now thought of that.

Also healthy! You can see the oats peeking out.
See the chocolate chips? Yum!

Okay, I searched the internet high and low, but could not find a link to the recipe.  It’s your lucky day:  I’m going to type it out.  I’m assuming it came from a Libby’s pumpkin can as Libby’s pumpkin is mentioned in the recipe by name.  My sister Leslie copied it for me (by hand!) several years ago.



Pumpkin Bread:


3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup quick or old-fashioned oats

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 eggs

1 3/4 cups Libby’s pumpkin (15 or 16 oz can)

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 1/2 packed brown sugar

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup evaporated milk

1 cup chopped walnuts (note:  I never use these!  Here’s where I would recommend adding chocolate chips instead!)


(Preheat oven to 350 degrees F)

1.  Combine flour, oats, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, salt in large bowl.

2.  Beat eggs, pumpkin, sugars, water, oil and evaporated milk in large mixer bowl on medium speed until combined.

3.  Beat flour mixture into pumpkin mixture on low speed until blended; stir in nuts (remember, CHOCOLATE chips).

4.  Spoon into 2 greased 9 by 5 inch loaf pans.

5.  Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 65 to 70 minutes or until toothpick in center comes out clean.

6.  Cool in pans for 10 minutes, remove to wire racks to cool completely.

* for mini loaves, prepare the same, but use 6 greased 5 5/8 by 3 1/4 inch pans.  Bake at 350 degrees F for 40 to 45 minutes.

I am so thankful for my pumpkin bread recipe!

Pumpkin Party (recap)

My friend Julia hosted a “Pumpkin Party” a few weeks ago.  She recently posted some pictures from it, and I wanted to share a few here for you (hopefully Julia won’t mind!).  Basically the party was a pumpkin carving party with lots of pumpkin foods, treats, and beer involved.  I’ve never been one for pumpkin carving (I think I’ve tried three times, and it’s just a lot of work 🙁 ) but I’m always really impressed by people who are good at it!


My favorite!




I can’t believe how creative/talented with a knife some people are.


If I have a baby, remind me to have it shortly before Halloween so I can dress it in a pumpkin costume! Baby Max 🙂



I am very serious about Pumpkin Beer. Evidently. This is Julia (and me).


Most recommended:  Schlafly Pumpkin Ale (have a six-pack in the fridge, as it was on sale.  However, it will probably end up sitting there for months as I really only drink socially.  I will have to take it somewhere, I guess!)


Everybody in the picture is named Chris


And last but not least, this is my friend Jon.  He’s missing.  If you see him, please let us know.


Good Friends

In light of last night’s fun performance (plus going out for drinks and food afterwards)…today I am thankful for GOOD FRIENDS.  Without my good friends, my life would be much less fulfilling and interesting.  Friends are definitely one of the things that makes life worth living!  And since I know many of my good friends are reading this, THANK YOU for being there for me, supporting me, and entertaining me 🙂

Fall is here!

Today I am thankful for the gorgeous fall weather.  The air is brisk, the sky is blue but cloudy, the trees are various shades of red, orange, and yellow, and I’m very comfortable outside in pants and a jacket.  This is my favorite time of year!

When I lived in Cleveland, that meant winter and SNOW was just around the corner.  Here the fall is not so ominous 🙂  I am just thinking about pumpkin spice lattes, turkey and stuffing, cute fall shoes, and running outside.  I’m so thankful fall is finally here!

Unmistakable landmark of my city!

Tough Wednesday

I’ve just finished my lunch, and I’m trying to think of something I’m thankful for.  Today is a tough day!

You know what: I’m thankful I was able to come home and eat lunch.  So many people in the world don’t have a refrigerator full of food–not just food, but fresh vegetables, fruits, dairy and meats!  I can make anything I want in the world for lunch (what I wanted was scrambled eggs with spinach and mushrooms), and I can afford to eat not only lunch.  So, that’s perspective for you.  I’m thankful I never have to worry about my next meal!  I am very lucky 🙂 My stomach is full and I feel good.


Election Day

Happy Election Day!

I did vote today–I think this was the second time in my life I voted in a midterm election.  The polling place is an easy two block walk from my house.  It was less hectic than last time (two years ago), and less exciting.  But that’s okay, I did my civic duty, right?  I even brought my sample ballot along with the answers marked down so I would know how to vote, very responsible of me!

I remember voting in 2004 in Cleveland–that was the year the voting places were completely overrun.  I was lucky and only had to wait in line (in a smelly, damp, very crowded hallway) for about 30 to 45 minutes before getting to vote.  Others had to wait for hours.  It was raining that day.

Today is very sunny, as was Election Day in 2008.  Hmm. I can’t recall 2006.  I remember it was cold.

I mention this all MAINLY because I’m sure most people are just sick and tired of the campaigning.  I know I am.  So much negativity all the time on the radio, tv, computers, etc.  So today, what I am thankful for is this:  the campaigning is over!  (for now).  THANK YOU!!  Of course, it’s bittersweet as I know tomorrow the word referendum will just be used over and over again…but nonetheless at least the campaigning is done.  So that is something to be thankful for 🙂