Earthquakes and Lightning (and Carrot Cake)

So, how about that earthquake? 5.9, and last night another aftershock, 4.5. I know, you California people, it’s just ‘rocking the baby.’ But we are not prepared, emotionally or structurally, for an earthquake that large, and ours have a different feeling, spreading wider distances because of geology. So. There.

A bit of music for earthquakes…

Apparently there is no ‘umbrella’ theory about preventing them, in the same way I pretend there is a way to ward off the rain when necessary. “Walk softly and carry a big umbrella” is my motto for cloudy skies.  Of course, I lose a lot of umbrellas that way, because unnecessary, dry umbrellas get set down and forgotten. But I like to think of it as spreading a bit of insurance for the unsuspecting.


Since I can’t do much about the earthquakes, except walk around the house standing objects back up and straightening frames on the wall, I guess I better get moving on dealing with Irene.

The last big hurricane we had here began with an “I” you know. So, I have two days off to gas up the cars, get cash (in small bills),  fill up the propane tank on the grill, buy cat food, move all the lawn furniture and such into our fancy new shed, charge all the electronics, find the candles, buy cat litter, freeze lots of ice cubes and bottles with water, (hmm, remove screens from windows? Have to check on that…) If I prepare properly and carefully enough, my ‘umbrella’  should be able to cause the storm to blow out to sea. If not,  I have enough books in my To-Be-Read pile that even after the nook runs out of juice, I will not run out of entertainment.

A song to move her along….

In other news.

I’ve been working on this carrot cake for years now. I started with a recipe that bears so little resemblance to what I bake that I thought it might be time to re-write it! Any occasion that I should be bringing food, Timmy suggests carrot cake.  (Of course, he would suggest it simply because it is Tuesday, I do believe)

I’ve baked it and tortured people with a 9 hour drive with a warm cake smelling up the back seat of a car, and we once had our hostess make an executive decision Easter morning and declare it breakfast. Pity the poor souls who came to dinner to find the desserts decimated.

House Specialty Carrot Cake (cupcakes)2011Aug18-92

  • 2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • About 1 lb. carrots,  grated.
  • 1  16 oz can crushed pineapple, lightly drained (open the can, set it into the strainer upside down till you need it. Whatever juice is still in the pineapple goes into the cake, I don’t press it out)2011Aug18-962011Aug18-100

In large mixing bowl combine and stir all dry ingredients to blend. Add all remaining ingredients and beat well until blended. Pour into a greased and floured 13×9 inch pan and bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.  ( I have a lovely double-walled aluminum pan that I swear by)

Optionally, line or grease 30 cupcake tins and fill 2/3 of the way to the top and bake for 25 minutes (15-18 minutes for mini-sized cupcake/muffins).  Frost cooled cake with cream cheese frosting or  eat as is! (No frosting makes it a healthy muffin!!)

2011Aug 18-126

My husband has been battling the yellow jacket infestation in our yard. The moles and voles have been very generous, sharing their old living quarters with the flying attack squadrons. Husband has been flouting his greater size, larger brain and opposable thumbs in attempting to win the war. Which I appreciate, because those things HURT when they sting!


My “YEAR ON THE APPOMATTOX has been kind of put on the back burner this month, because of the unrelenting heat and humidity which make it unpleasant to walk through the area, and the absolute GREEN-ness of the area, which has offered little to see visually.

However, I went back last week, found this fellow 2011AUG16-38

and noted that the shades of green are starting to separate because each plant welcomes autumn in a different fashion. I think it will be a lovely view starting in the next few weeks, and I look forward to getting back down there weekly.

Friday afternoon, my dear mother-in-law, Evelyn is going in for a second back surgery. Suffice it to say it’s a nasty, painful procedure and all we can ask for are good, healing thoughts…

3 thoughts on “Earthquakes and Lightning (and Carrot Cake)

  1. How many cups of shredded carrots equal 4 to 5 carrots? The carrots from my garden range greatly in size from 2 bites to dinner sized for 2 people.


  2. At Safeway I weighed 5 “normal” carrots – just a tad under 1.5 pounds. This will be a great recipe to use the super large carrots lurking in the garden. Thanks!!


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