Sunday, July 22, 2012

5 observations and puffed wheat cake

  1. I ran an 8k race this morning and it went pretty well. It was steamy hot. But, I don't have a headache. I think that means I've finally mastered the art of hydration in this god-forsaken climate.
  2. I am teaching Romeo and Juliet to 9th graders. I love teaching Romeo and Juliet to 9th graders. I don't think I'd have any particular affection for R & J, if it weren't for how much they dig it.  I know it's famous for its poetry, but I love it for its characters and plotting (and maybe its excess of dirty jokes). My students were on the edge of their seats as Mercutio and Tybalt  fought this week (oh and we were reading not watching). 
  3. I continue to volunteer teach at Calicanto. It's been such a great experience. In fact it has changed the way I think about teaching. I think I knew, but I didn't really understand, that so much of teaching is about human interaction. There is the subject being taught of course, but there's so much about respect and kindness, and how to interact with other humans... I feel quite strongly, that the classroom is one of the important places we learn about how to treat each other (and where we might get the idea that we don't matter if we are treated badly). I have seen women change profoundly in a few short weeks of training, and I believe that it has as much to with kindness and respect as it does with the subjects being taught.
  4. We had no school on Wednesday because of a water main break. There's really nothing like an unexpected day off. We were supremely lazy and didn't shower, even though there was water at our house. 
  5. Have you seen this? It's mash-up of the two ubiquitous songs. I think I like it better than either of the originals.

Here's a recipe for puffed wheat cake. It is the easiest thing ever and it is delicious. It reminds of being a kid and it reminds me of tree planting--it's totally nostalgic, but more nutritious than peanut butter marshmallow squares (which I also adore). I've been making it a lot lately (3 times last week!). 

Puffed Wheat Cake
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
3 tablespoons cocoa
1 teaspoon vanilla
8 cups puffed wheat (or a combination of puffed grains if you want to mix it up)

Butter a 9x13 cake pan.

Boil the honey, sugar, butter and cocoa for five minutes. Take off the heat and stir in vanilla and then the puffed cereal. Press the mixture into the pan.

If you live in 90% humidity, you will need to keep this in the fridge.


  1. I just learned of Calicanto on and so appreciate their mission. (I want to live in Panama and am always trying to learn more about organizations there). Good for you for volunteering with them!

    I loved reading your thoughts on teaching and how much of teaching is beyond the subject matter. My teachers, from elementary school to grad school, made a big difference in my life. Thank you for being gracious in the classroom and helping to transform the women you are working with. (I hope that doesn’t sound too corny).


    1. Thank you Sally. Calicanto is a great organization. My volunteer time there is often the highlight of my week. I might have thought "transform" corny if I hadn't seen it for myself. I know a lot of people wouldn't believe me, but some people just need a chance and a little kindness.