“If you want something make it happen or make an excuse”

great aunt dottie

grace

Aunt Dottie with her mom and 2 brothers (the tall one is my maternal grandfather)

This is my great aunt Dottie.  I’ve mentioned before I come from a long line of independent women.  Aunt Dottie was the only girl in a family of 4 boys.  She is an adventurer.  In her mid 90’s now she still swims in the Lake, takes Tennis and is on a softball team.  She teaches water aerobics and does yoga.

She had 3 daughters and raised them on her own.  Sadly her oldest died of a brain aneurysm at an early age.  She worked hard and enjoyed all the good things in life like flying a plane and skydiving.  I love to listen to her stories of her life.

Her wisdom is an inspiration.  Her simple philosophy of life should be taught in schools.  She always said to us children to live life and not be afraid of failure.  If you get knocked down, get up.  You don’t deserve special treatment nor for anyone to take care of you if you are healthy enough to take care of yourself.  If you want something, make it happen or make an excuse.  I remember thinking it was mean when I was a child to say something like that.  As I’ve gotten older, I appreciate those words and the truth behind them.  And I am sharing those wonderful words of wisdom with my children.

She is coming to visit us in August and I can’t wait to see her and listen to her adventures over the last year!!

Easy Chocolate Cake

cake

We love this easy chocolate cake recipe.  I always bake it in 2 pans (round or 8×8) as one will get frosted and the other will not because my crazy daughter does not like frosting.

I try to bake on the weekends and fit it in while preparing a meal.  This past weekend I made the macaroni salad while making chocolate chip cookies and last night I made chocolate cake for dessert for the week while grilling pork tenderloin.  It’s called “multi task cooking”.

I have used many variations of flour and sweetener in this recipe and it always tastes fabulous.

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour (or whole wheat white flour or half almond flour etc.)
  • 3/4 cup cocoa p0wder    (I use the Hershey’s brand but whatever cocoa powder is fine)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans.

2. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.

3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely and frost or leave plain.

This is also very good served with ice cream or make a quick batch of whip cream with heavy cream and serve on top.  YUM!!