During the last couple of days in Puerto Rico we were finally blessed with amazing weather. We were able to take the kids to the beach and the pool several times with both family and friends; as you can imagine they were not nearly ready to go back to the cold Midwest.
I am staying in Puerto Rico with my Grandparents Lucia kept on saying over and over during the last couple of days in the island. It was like she could feel our vacation time coming to an end. Don't worry, Mama, I will visit you soon; but I am staying here. Enrico and I had no idea how to react to Lucia's statements so I just said Don't worry, sweetie, you'll get to see them again soon enough, plus we still have a few more days in Puerto Rico so you don't have to make a decision yet. As most of you know by now, my daughter has the leader personality (fancy word for determined, bratty and opinionated; just like her Mama!) so we have to let her make her own decisions by giving her choices. Obviously, staying in Puerto Rico without us was not really an option; but given the fact that our leader is a four year old, we were just giving her time to change her mind.
The kids were having the best of times. Joaquin just loved playing with his three cousins while Lucia enjoyed cooking with my Mother. They both spent hours in my Dad's swimming pool and all Grandparents kept on catering their every need. Chocolates at 10:00 pm, no naps or established bedtimes, and pop tarts for breakfast was the norm during two entire weeks. Joaquin even had a Coca-Cola after seeing one of my nephews drinking one! Nothing was out of limits for my children for fourteen days and I decided to play dumb and ignore it all; after all, like I said in my last post it only happens once a year. With that said, I applied the same motto to myself, as I decided to indulge into absolutely everything that crossed my eyes. Was I happy with the decision? Let's just say that it's been almost three weeks since we flew back home and I am still working on losing the extra pounds. Was it worth it? Hell, yes! Every single bite and every last sip of wine 100% worth it, after all it really does happen once a year.
The day before leaving the island, I started preparing the kids for the inevitable moment of saying goodbye. Enrico and I both knew this was not going to be an easy task so we were scheming a plan to make the goodbyes as painless as possible. We are not leaving yet, right, Mama? My heart was aching for our children but I just said We are leaving tomorrow but think about all of these new toys that you'll have to play with when we get home! All of a sudden, my kids looked at us and said, almost simultaneously, How are we going to fit all of these toys in the plane?! How are we going to fit all of these toys in the plane? No crying? No I am staying with my Grandparents orders? This was going to be easier than expected; and believe it or not the kids just said goodbye and hugged their Grandmother at the airport. No tears. No screams. As we were departing the island, my daughter just asked me, and I quote: "Will we see them again soon, Mama?" and I just smiled and said Of course, my love, you will get to see them very soon. I promise. And she just closed her eyes and fell asleep with a smile on her face. Ay Mama!
We came back home three weeks ago and we are currently housebound due to a severe snow storm. For today's recipe, an easy carrot cake recipe, perfect to keep the kids entertained for a few hours! Enjoy.
-4 large eggs
-2 cups granulated sugar
-1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
-1 1/4 vegetable oil
-2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
-2 tsp. ground cinnamon
-1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
-1 tsp. salt
For the icing:
-8 oz. cream cheese (soften)
-2 oz. unsalted butter
-2 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
-1/4 tsp. vanilla
-Chopped walnuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 9" bundt pan and set aside. Mix eggs by adding them one at a time with an electric mixer. Add sugar (slowly) and mix for about two minutes. Add shredded carrots and vegetable oil and mix for two more minutes.
Sift salt, baking powder, cinnamon and flour and slowly add them to the batter. Mix all ingredients for a minute or two. Bake for 1 hour.
For the icing, mix cream cheese and butter and slowly add confectioners sugar. (Around three minutes). Let the cake stand five minutes before taking it off the pan and wait until it cools to frost. Add walnuts on top for decoration. Buen Provecho!