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That’s right, the latest storm has taken out my pear tree:( Then bugs and last year’s drought killed my birch tree! I now understand why Iowans do not plant trees in their yards…..
there isn’t really a point to planting pretty trees, if they are going to be knocked down by 80MPH winds. That’s right, 80+MPH wind gust blew thru here on Sunday night during a severe thunderstorm. Every TV station was posting warnings so I knew it was coming, but you never know what the damage will be until morning. Most of these storms hit during the evening hours so it is too dark to go outside and investigate.
I was going back and forth between the TV and the online bake sale, waiting until just before midnight to outbid someone and win the cookbook that I wanted! Well, Mother Nature had other plans. At 11:45 the lights flickered, and my computer screen went black. The power in the house did not go out, just in my office. How is that even possible? I checked the surge protector, not on. Went into the basement to check the breaker box, they were all on (or so I thought). Alex was at work, so I was out of luck…..I had no clue what was going on.
This is what I woke up to…..
and here is the rest of it…..
Thankfully it missed the neighbor’s house!!! Do you see the upside down light on the garage, that is going to become very important to this story! Because the power was still not working in the office. Alex thought he had fixed it, but the breaker would not stay on. We went outside to take pictures and noticed that light on the garage. That couldn’t possibly have anything to do with the power being out on the opposite side of the house could it? YES, it can…..
When the light was blown upside down, the metal bracket inside cut thru the protective sheathing and shorted out the wiring. I have no idea why the garage lights are connected to the formal dining room!
Time to borrow a chain saw…..
I am so lucky to have Alex!!! First he trimmed off the upper branches…..
then he cut the trunk down…..
then he chopped all of the pieces up so they would fit in the back of the truck. He took four loads to the yard waste center!
No more shade for my driveway, and so much for Alex’s days off work!
So while I was looking around for damage, I noticed that the birch tree in the backyard did not have any leaves on it…..ought oh!
Since we already have the chainsaw out…..
So much for my favorite birch tree 🙁 I guess there will be 4 or 5 more trips to the yard waste center this weekend!
Needless to say, I have been pretty distracted this week. The damage is nothing in comparison to the damage that happened in Moore, Oklahoma. I cannot even imagine what they are going thru. To be honest, I don’t want to ever know what they are going thru. It makes you stop and think about what is important in life, and about how little control we have over any of it. My computer is still doing strange things, like hiding some of my photos. It isn’t playing nice with picmonkey, so there will be no watermarks today.
This is a recipe that I created back in December for the SCHARFFEN BERGER Chocolate Adventures Challenge. I did not win, but these cookies are still really good. The contest was for sandwich cookies, which I have never made before. The chocolate ganache filling did not excite me, so I am not including it today. I like these cookies just the way they come out of the oven. The sweetness comes from the bananas, and sugar of course, and I don’t think they need anything else.
There were exotic ingredients that needed to be incorporated into the recipe, so I chose cocoa nibs and bananas for this recipe. Now I will be honest, SCHARFFEN BERGER chocolate is more expensive and I had to order it online because they do not sell it in Cedar Rapids, but their cocoa nibs were much better than the ones that I bought at the grocery store. The chocolate chunks, well I can live with Ghirardelli chocolate bars from the baking aisle 🙂
Don’t these Chunky Monkey Cookies look yummy? The cocoa nibs add some crunch when you don’t want to add nuts, and they have a slight chocolate flavor to them. I had never had them before, but I like how they added a different texture and something unexpected to the cookies.
I hope all is well in your part of the world, and I hope you enjoy the upcoming holiday weekend 🙂
Chunky Monkey Cookies
|Prep time||15 minutes|
|Cook time||25 minutes|
|Total time||40 minutes|
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (softened)
- 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
- 3/4 cups granulated sugar
- 3/4 cups brown sugar (packed)
- 1 Large egg
- 1 cup ripe bananas, mashed (about 2 medium)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 1/4 Cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 4 Ounces semi-sweet chocolate bar (cut into chunks)
- 1 cup SCHARFFEN BERGER cocoa nibs
SCHARFFEN BERGER cocoa nibs are the best that I have tried. They are harder to find, but are a finer texture and taste better.
This recipe will be partying at these link parties!