Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Day

We're having a great Valentine's Day this year! The celebration began early at Solana's school. The students made Valentine bags at school and her teacher sent home a list of names so that the kids could write their own Valentines. They had all week to bring in their treats, filling their friends' bags more and more every day. Solana and I made crayon hearts (the same fun craft we did last year). She finally got to bring all her Valentines home on Friday. Out of curiosity, I looked at them and got to see a sample of her classmates' handwriting. I noted that Solana's handwriting is far superior to the other kids' handwriting. Now, I'm not saying that this means she's the smartest kid in her class. Just...that she's probably the smartest kid in her class... ;-)

The girls also received packages in the mail from Grammy and Grampy and Aunt Carol. Chloe loves her monkey!

Then my friend, Kim, offered to babysit so Dave and I could go out for dinner and we were excited for the opportunity. The problem was that we didn't realize how many other people would be celebrating Valentines Day early so we waited until the last minute to make dinner reservations. Our favorite places were all booked! But Dave did some searching online and found a French restaurant in Centerville - only 5 minutes from our house. He read that they specialize in using local ingredients and organic meats and the dress is smart casual. We decided to give it a try even though we know nothing about French cuisine. I was reminded that sometimes things really work out well. I can't even begin to say how AMAZING the food was. If you're looking for a very special restaurant in Centerville, Ohio I give my absolute highest recommendation to Rue Dumaine. It's located in the Sam's Club shopping center of all places! I never would have guessed the classy casually elegant restaurant inside. We had the best time and the best food. This is my new favorite restaurant and Dave hesitates to rate it over Flemming's but I'm going to go ahead and make the call for him. I think I know where we'll be headed for our anniversary... :-)

Meanwhile, Solana had a great time playing dress-up with Sophia and Chloe had fun keeping Kim on her toes! Thanks Kim!

This morning the girls and I woke to a surprise on the kitchen table. Chocolates for me, stuffed animals for the girls, and cards all around. Dave and Solana go out ever year to the local chocolatier and pick out chocolates for me. Solana loves it! The only problem is that I have no self control around those things. They're sooooo good! Yum yum yum!

We also surprised Dave with a cake. Yellow cake with cream cheese icing and strawberry filling. All from scratch. Solana helped decorate the top. This was my first cake with filling and also my first attempt using the convection feature on my oven. I was a bit nervous but it turned out great! Here are the three recipes I used: Cake, Frosting, Filling.


The Hillbergs said...

that cake looks amazing!!! will you send me the recipe?? do you have to use convection? I don't have a fancy oven like that!

Cyndi Hendrickson said...

Hi Jennifer! I just added links to the end of the blog entry. A convection oven is absolutely NOT necessary! I just happen to have one and randomly decided to try it out for the first time on this cake. A couple of tips on the cake: I halved the frosting and filling recipes and they were more than enough for the cakes. Plus, I skimped a bit on the sugar for the cake and frosting. Nothing major but I didn't use the full amounts. We love sweets but cake recipes tend to be sickly sweet for my taste. Also, I'm not sure if you're an experienced cake filler but I found her tips for making a dam (on the filling recipe) extremely helpful. Good luck!

carol anne said...

We stole your crayon idea! I have to get the pictures up so you can see (I am still waaaaay behind on posting them)
I am so happy the girls like their stuffies and you and Dave got to go out.
Cake looks yummy too ~

Holbergs said...

So happy you and Dave got to go out on a date - and that you have someone that you can trust my beautiful nieces to.
I can't wait to go to that restaurant with you on my next Ohio visit! :o)

Kim said...

Awww, I was so glad to help and we had so much fun. Sophia and Solana get along so well and Chloe kept me entertained. We had a good laugh over the orzo she kept putting in her hair. lol Let me know if you need us for your anniversary, we'd love to come over again.