Monday Musings…

Ahh, the holidays. I feel like I’ve been shopping and wrapping and baking for eons! I’ve got so much crazy going on this week, it’s hard to keep it all straight in my head. Good news? It’s all fun, Christmas-y stuff. Bad news? It’s all majorly time consuming!  That said, I do have a few things to share with you today. Please excuse the random nature of this post. 🙂

1. Thanks so much to everyone from the Deja Vu Blogfest who stopped by this little blog over the last few days. Your comments on my (re)post were reassuring and validating and inspiring. The YA community rocks!

2. I made November Cakes! In case you’re in the dark about these tasty little treats, November Cakes are pastries invented by Maggie Stiefvater, beautifully described in The Scorpio Races (an aMaZiNg book, by the way). Maggie recently wrote and posted a recipe for these little rolls of heaven, and of course I had to test it out. Though they took about four (FOUR!) hours to make start to finish, the effort was certainly worth it…

Now, I’m not sure Maggie would approve, but I’m thinking I might’ve come up with a shortcut for November Cakes, in case you’re not down with spending four hours in the kitchen dealing the yeast and multiple risings. Why not buy already prepared refrigerated bread dough and start with that, picking up Maggie’s recipe after the first rising, and skipping the second rising all together? I admit, I haven’t actually tried this yet so I can’t vouch for whether these shortcut November Cakes are quite as delicious, but I’m definitely down to give it a go. Also, the next time I make November Cakes I’m going to roll candied pecans into them. Because… why not?

3. YA Highway has been rocking my world lately. It almost seems as if the bloggers there are tailoring their posts to me and the specific struggles I’m having with my writing. Take this post on Getting Your Characters “In” by Veronica Roth, or the one about Asking Why by Leila Austin. Seriously awesome. I highly recommend you check out these posts (and all the rest!) if you haven’t already.

4. The Class of 2011: YA Superlative Blogfest kicks off one week from tomorrow! There’s still plenty of time to prepare and schedule your posts before the real holiday madness begins. Have you signed up yet?

5. Dexter. Season finale. Last five seconds = Jaw drop. Holy Hell.

6. Remember last week when I mentioned my daughter’s preschool Christmas Program? Well, it was predictably adorable. Nothing like 25 four-year-olds screaming Jingle Bells at the top of their lungs. Not that I’m biased or anything, but there was one four-year-old who was especially delightful…

All pretty and ready to go…

Taking her role as Mary VERY seriously…

Totally rocking her Winter Wonderland solo…

Cutest!

♥♥ Love my girl! ♥♥

How was your weekend? Who else has a crazy-busy week ahead?

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28 responses to “Monday Musings…

  1. I want some cakes, but four hours is probably not going to happen. They look so good though! And your daughter does look adorable, aww.

    I was all signed up for the YA Superlatives Blogfest, but I’m going to have to pass, because, shock horror, I’ve only read a handful of 2011 releases. Sadface. I’ll totally be reading all the blog posts and stealing book recommendations, though, and you’ve given me a reading goal for 2012: read more recent releases! That way I’ll be able to participate next year 😉

    • Sophia, you might still consider doing the Superlatives Blogfest… just skip the categories you don’t have a selection for. We’d love to read your recs for any and all topics you’re able to fill!

      • I’m not officially participating, but I will link and post shout-outs and, of course, make the rounds on other blogs: I’m not crazy enough to miss out on this! I’ll also be doing a round-up of the best YA books I read this year on the Wednesday, and between that and, ahem, borrowing the Wednesday questions, I WILL be sharing the 2011 reads I loved. Recommendations galore, new and old(er)!

        And next year, I’ll have more recent releases to share, promise.

  2. Yeah, four hours is a bit of a killer, but those do look delicious! And your daughter is adorable as always! SHe always seems so happy. 🙂

    Question about the Superlative Blogfest. Is it only books that were released in 2011 or does it cover any book I read in 2011, regardless of release date?

    • Thanks, Meredith! She usually IS happy. 🙂

      We’re hoping to keep the blogfest focused on 2011 releases, unless otherwise stated in the category. We think that’ll help keep everything clear and cohesive. Definitely let me (or Tracey or Alison or Jess) know if you have any other questions. Looking forward to reading your posts!

  3. FOUR HOURS. I’d never have the patience for that — which is probably why I don’t bake. 😛 That preschool Christmas program looks adorable! And I see your daughter had a starring role, yes? 😉

    • Ha! Starring role! Sort of, I suppose. 🙂 Though all the kiddos we’re absolutely adorable. And yeah… four hours *was* a bit long, but I like baking so it’s all good!

  4. What a cute Christmas play! Your daughter looks adorable as Mary! Those cakes look delicious. I might try them sometime with the ready made dough.

  5. I’m attempting Nov cakes later this week – hope mine turn out as good!

  6. What a sweetheart! You’re clearly one very proud Mama. And who can blame you with so much to be proud of?

    Happy Christmas, my dear. I hope this holiday season continues to bring you incredible joy…

  7. Ahh! Dexter season finale! I’m on episode 11 right now, and I have so many theories on what’s going to happen. (Amazingly, I have avoided spoilers so far. But it’s only 10 am, so. . . .) 🙂

  8. Dang, those November Cakes look so good!

    And your little one just gets cuter and cuter, I swear.

  9. Your daughter is SO adorable. And talented, too! She seems totally into her role as Mary 🙂

    And those November cakes! Mmm!

  10. It’s been busy here, but not as busy as there. I love all the photos of your daughter. I bet she was the best 4 year old there.

  11. Yes, yes, yes to YA Highway. Everything they’ve got going on there right now is great. (I loved the Why Do Writers Disappear post). And your daughter is 15,000 kinds of adorable. Yay for Mary.

  12. Your daughter is the cutest baby ever!

  13. There are so many things on your list that I can comment on. So I’m just going to go in order. 🙂
    2. Omg, November cakes! I’m reading Scorpio Races right now, and I just got to that part. They sound drool-worthy! (Also, I am loving the book.)
    3. I read the character post on YA Highway and agree that it was excellent! Will have to check out the other one now.
    1&4. Yay for blogfests! I’m excited to do the YA Superlatives one!
    5. Dexter finale. OMG. I can’t even. Talk about a game changer!
    6. Your daughter is adorable! Looks like she did a great job at the concert.

    • So glad you’re loving SCORPIO. It’s one of my faves from this year. And the cakes… yum! And Dexter. In the interest of keeping this blog spoiler free, all I’ll say is this: Oh. Em. Gee!