I've been baking a lot lately. Bread, mostly, but also some cookies, scones and sticky buns here and there. Something about winter (especially snowy days) makes me want to bake bread. When I was in high school, I remember snow days where I made bread. I also have cozy memories of my mom baking bread when I was a kid, so I suppose that's why I have a hankering for it now. Fresh, warm bread from the oven is wonderful.
I don't use a bread machine; I just do it the old-fashioned way. I mix the ingredients by hand (sometimes I use a mixer early on, but usually I just use a wooden spoon) and knead the dough by hand. Sometimes I use a thermometer to make sure the liquid is warm but not too hot, other times I just test it on my wrist. It's perhaps more time-consuming than if I had a bread machine, but I enjoy the process. I'm not making bread daily so it hasn't become tedious.
When Dan was in Swaziland years ago, another ex-pat used some great bread recipes from a cookbook written by Bernard Clayton. After moving to Delaware, and I was home full-time, I requested some new cookbooks for Christmas. Dan made sure to get me this one.
It's full of all kinds of bread recipes from all over the world, and I've been having fun making different ones. Being the lazy blogger that I am (and one without a smart phone), I don't have any pictures of the bread to wow you with. But if you come to my house, or if you baby-sit my kids, you might just get to have some of it.
I've found that my domestic interests go in spurts. For now, any creative juices are being used in the kitchen. For the most part, I haven't spent much time at my sewing machine or with crochet hooks or knitting needles. My sewing machine is not running the best these days (I think it's on its way out), but more than anything, I just don't have the drive to sew things. I do have two items to finish making for the kids, but I have a feeling it's going to be quite a while until they're done. I recently put away most of the fabric I'd purchased this fall, because seeing all those unused bolts of fabric was beginning to stress me out. When my body is growing a life, I feel less of a need for a creative outlet in general.