Tag Archives: experiment
My “Heirloom” Cactus
Preparing the Environment
Have you propagated succulents? I have not had much success with starting other varieties (except jade). Leave your advice in the comments!
I like my coffee strong, dark, and sweet, so I like coffee-flavoring syrups. Did you know it is easy to make your own, customized syrups that taste better than store-bought? I start with the most basic simple syrup recipe and add whatever suits my taste. Both microwave and stove top work well for me, so I have included directions for both.
What is your favorite coffee flavor?
Basic Simple Syrup
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
Cinnamon Stick Syrup
Add 1 cinnamon stick (3-4 inches long), broken into pieces
Vanilla Rum Syrup
Add 1 teaspoon vanilla (Mexican or some other really good kind), and
1 teaspoon rum or rum flavoring
Stir all ingredients together in a clear, microwave-safe container that holds at least four cups. (I use my four-cup Pyrex measuring cup.) Cook on high for two minutes, stir, and then heat until bubbling but not to a rolling boil. Stir about every minute and keep a close watch so it does not boil over. Cook at a “bubble, not boil” for about five minutes in total.
Stir all ingredients together in a small saucepan that holds at least four cups. Heat to a low simmer, but not a rolling boil. Stir occasionally. Simmer for about five minutes in total.
Taste Test & Finishing
When the sugar is completely dissolved and the solution is thicker than plain water, you can check the flavor: Scoop up about a half-teaspoon of HOT syrup and let it cool before you taste it. If you prefer a more intense flavor, you can simmer for a little longer and consider adding a little more of the flavor add-ins. When you like the flavor, let the syrup cool.
If your add-ins are not dissolved (like the cinnamon stick), strain out the pieces with a strainer and cheesecloth. Pour the syrup into your preferred containers. I prefer easy-to-pour bottles. Use right away or store in refrigerator.*
*I always store mine in the refrigerator and have no idea how long it lasts because I use the syrup quickly!
What has fear of failure stopped you from doing?
Skydiving, singing solo in public (singing is definitely not my gift!), diving from a high board, flying with a jet pack or in an ultra-light, bungee jumping, stopping a speeding train like a superhero. I have no interest in trying any of these things, though!
I’ve heard of 31 Days in passing and several bloggers I follow will participate every year. I’ve never had the desire or time to do it myself, but enjoy reading what others post.
I like to write because it helps me ponder and process but I had the idea that it would take a ton of time and energy and creativity to undertake 31 Days. As I scrolled through the list of links to participating blogs, I realized that many people do lots of time and energy and creativity into their 31 posts, but some make it more simple and still meaningful and/or fun. If you are doing 31 Days and you fall into that last group, thank you for making it seem attainable.
I like questions, especially random ones that don’t have yes or no answers, that make people think, that start conversations, that invite stories. I have a whole list of good questions already, so I’m going to post one with my answer every day for the 31 days of October. Take them and ask your friends or family if you want. I would love to hear your answers in the comments (seriously. that’s why I ask, after all)! If you have suggestions of questions to include, let me know.