All Posts By

heatheryn

The best thing about 2020

Now that 2020 is over, I can look back and figure out what the best parts were. Specifically in my author life.

2020 brought some challenges in writing for a lot of us. Our kids were suddenly home and needing help with remote learning. That takes a good chunk of the day for those of us who used the time our kids were at school to get work done. It’s also an added frustration because I’m not a teacher and let’s just say not all of my son’s teachers give the best instructions.

However, some amazing things still happened last year.

The best thing was finding a writing tribe that works for me. It’s a group of five authors (originally, we’ve added a couple) who all get on zoom and do writing sprints. Twenty minutes to write as much as you can.

I’ve never written this fast this well in my life.

If it wasn’t for this group of women, 2020 would’ve ended very differently for me when it came to my writing life and I’m so thankful that I was invited to join this group. Not only have I found my writing tribe and figured out a way to be productive during a pandemic that is changing how we do things (at least temporarily) but I’ve found some fantastic friends.

Chocolate Bread

This weekend I told my daughter that I’d make chocolate bread but then I didn’t have a chance. So I made it yesterday and posted a thing about it to TikTok.

People wanted the recipe so I thought you might too!

I use someone else’s recipe and that can be found here: https://inthekitchenwithmatt.com/chocolate-bread

First, I got my ingredients together.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white granulated sugar 200g
  • 1/2 cup butter room temp/softened (115g)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk 240g
  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose plain flour (210)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 50g
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts optional (40g)
  • 1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips optional (60g)

Followed the recipe and was ready to put into the oven.

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F/176 C. In a large bowl cream together the butter and the sugar with a mixer.
  • Add in the eggs and mix those until well combined. Put the mixer away. Add the buttermilk and stir/fold it in with a sturdy spatula or wooden spoon. Just until combined.
  • In a sifter add the flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Sift those dry ingredients into the bowl. Or if you don’t have a sifter whisk them together in a separate bowl and then add them to the main bowl. Fold the dry ingredients into the batter until just combined.
  • Some optional ingredients you can add at this point are walnuts or pecans and chocolate chips.
  • Grease a 9×5 inch bread loaf pan or spray it with kitchen spray. Add the chocolate bread batter to the pan and bake it in the oven, middle rack, for 55 to 60 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Allow the bread to cool for 15 minutes. Remove it from the pan and place it on a wire rack to cool completely. Serve up a slice and enjoy! I like to add strawberry preserves and butter to mine, but it is amazing plain as well.

It came out looking and smelling great!

Once it was cool, I pulled it out of the pan for it to cool even more. Once that happened, it was time to cut and the the family swarmed.

Want to know how much is left? Almost none. A bit of a heel. But it was delicious and the kids were happy 🙂

Remote Learning

I recently told a friend of mine (Hi April!) that I had no idea what to write on my blog. I always feel like nothing special is going on in my life and nobody wants to hear about the boring.

But we decided that you might actually want to hear about the boring.

So here it is.

Remote learning is kind of kicking my ass most days. I don’t mind doing remote learning with my 8th grader because it was our decision. The school requires masks which I agree with but for him, a kid with Auditory Processing Disorder, it wasn’t going to work. My senior is face to face learning.

The masks make it harder for him to pick up the voices (which is already hard if there’s any background noise) and he relies on watching facial movements to reinforce what’s being said as well as to tell how people are feeling, etc.

So it wasn’t going to work for him and we chose remote learning. I’m totally fine with it but gah! It’s so hard *insert best whiny voice*.

But it’s hard because the teachers are so scattered. It’s hard because our school district decided that 8th graders were going to get a jump on their high school classes by putting them into Algebra 1 and Spanish 1. Most of our time is spent trying to figure out what the teachers want him to do, where the assignments are, when they are due. All of that.

So, if you’re struggling with remote learning this year, know that I am with you and hopefully next year we will all look back and be like… remember that? 🙂