Saturday, October 26, 2013

Let's Start a Revolution!

While the concept of letter writing is not new by any means, my idea for a Letter Writing Revolution is. Brand new, in fact. I literally just thought of it. I knew I needed to write a post about it before it got pushed to the backburner!

A friend of mine recently posted on her Facebook that she's looking to write more letters to friends. I responded and got a lovely card in the mail shortly after. It was so exciting to find a hand written letter in the mailbox just for me! I also had been wanting to write letters to my sister-in-law for fun and while  writing those two letters today, the idea came to me.
So today, Saturday, October 26th, 2013 I am issuing into effect, my very own Letter Writing Revolution and I want all of YOU to join me! 
I had tons of pen pals as a kid (thanks Tiger Beat magazine!) and loved it. It was so cool to write to a girl my age over in Spain, Italy or California. My mom had pen pals when she was a kid too so it was cool to take on the same hobby. As I grew older, the letters eventually stopped. Busier school and social lives I'm sure were the causes but also, the internet. Instant messaging (AIM anyone?) took over. Especially if you were cool enough to have a screen name like xXxGothGirlxXx. 
IMs made way for chat rooms and eventually LiveJournal and Xanga. From those spawned MySpace and now we have Facebook. Not to mention 50 other social media sites that no one has time for. 
Now don't get me wrong, I think Facebook and other social media can be an incredible tool! It can connect long lost friends or family members or reconnect old high school friends. It's especially a valuable tool for bloggers like myself. 
Yet, Facebook has a down side. It has us more connected than ever before and somehow completely disconnected. Rather than call someone and see how they've been, you can simply "like" their status about a new job or a delicious lunch. 
I think we need to REALLY reconnect with people by handwriting letters to them. 
Let's do this together and start a Letter Writing Revolution! 

I don't want to bog this down with "rules" but if you'd like to join me on this, comment below. To make this awesome, feel free to share across the internet! Yes, we're going to use social media to our advantage! It's quick and effective. Share this post through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, or Google+...or all of the above. Let's make this a big, beautiful movement. Use the hashtag (oh boy I hate hashtags but let's do this!) #LetterWritingRevolution to help organize our progress! 
I'm going to share on my personal Facebook page with my friends and family to find more people to write to. I'm open to write to anyone! New friends, old friends, strangers, family members, bloggers, soldiers, children and people all across the globe! 

Feel free to write postcards instead. Start small if you have to. I also encourage you to get involved with PostCrossing! It's an awesome organization that basically keeps track of postcard penpals. I wrote a little about it here
What are you waiting for? Dust off the envelopes, grab a pen and start writing! Let's make this so huge and fabulous that the USPS is taken by surprise! 
May your hand not cramp until the 2nd page (or paragraph. I know, it's been a while). 
So tell me, who will you write to first? Who do you think will write back? 
Till next time,

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Trip to Ft. Collins, CO Oct. 11-13, 2013 (10/16/13)

Welcome to my first ever Wordless Wednesday.
In order to commemorate this first installment, I shall show you my weekend at Ft. Collins, CO to visit my brother Colin and see HIS performance in Les Miz.

Grantaire and Enjorlas: Buddies to the end!

The show drink: The Drink With Me

Valjean (left) and Fantine (right)
Madame and M. Thenardier
While we were out there, we also went on the Budweiser Plant tour.  And yes, we took Colin along too.  Here are some photos.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Slow Cooker Sundays:Oct 6th, 2013 (Cherry Cola Chocolate Cake)

So! Found a new linky from Anderson's Angels.  Welcome to Crock Pot Thursdays!! Okay well actually Slow Cooker Sudays is what I call it. Simply because it's easier to try crock pot stuff on Sundays.

Cherry Cola Chocolate Cake
What you need:
1/2 cup cola
1/2 cup dried tart cherries
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate milk
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups cola
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup dark rum - I did not use this
Vanilla Ice Cream and cherries - optional
What you do:
In a saucepan, bring cola and dried cherries to a boil. Remove from heat; let stand for 30 minutes. In a bowl, combine flour, sugar, chocolate, baking powder and salt. Combine milk, butter and vanilla; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in cherry mixture. Pour into crockpot coated with cooking spray.
For topping, in a saucepan, combine cola and sugars. Cook and stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat; stir in chocolate and rum. Pour over cherry mixture; do not stir.
Cover and cook on high for 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until set. Turn off heat; let stand, covered for 30 minutes. Serve warm with ice cream and cherries if you want.

So this was my first ever attempt at making a cake in the slow-cooker. I would gladly try this again.  However, there are some things I wouldn't actually do again.  First off, I had (mistakenly) thought that I had run out of flour.  The cake turned out runny due to the uneven ratio of dry/wet.  I also don't think I allowed the glaze/sweet sauce to reduce like it should have.  It ended up too sweet and more like a bread pudding. 
All in all however, I think that if I did it again I would.  I'd make sure to keep the ratio like it's supposed to be and make sure the sauces reduce.    It was still good.