I am still not a fan of 2014.
We're coming off the "slow season" at work, meaning my recent paychecks have been half what the several before them were, so money is tight to begin with.
The MFA Children were home ALL LAST WEEK between MLK Day and Polar Vortex I: Are You For Serious? This would be less of a big deal if not for the fact that my kids receive free breakfast and lunch at school, so two meals per day time three kids times five days plus boredom-snacking put a real dent in our pantry.
Now we're faced with Polar Vortex II: Still In Denial About Climate Change, Asshole? and school is already closed for tomorrow but I still have to white-knuckle it to work in my little Beater before the sun and the salt trucks are up. Plus my ex-husband decided to demand extra visitation time on short notice with one child only DURING A BLIZZARD and have a hissy-fit when I declined to drag us all to the neutral exchange location at least twice (but realistically more like three or four times, with the way things have been going at exchanges lately) in all of this. Faaaaabulous.
All of the above meant my feelings wanted candy, but it wasn't in the budget. HOWEVER! Having Alpha Hive drop dead means that not only did Bravo inherit a "deep" of capped honey, but there was also enough to harvest several frames, and I had honey to burn. Some Googling around led me to this recipe for honey-sweetened salted caramel, but didn't make heavy cream, brown sugar, gluten-free vanilla extract, waxed paper, and a candy thermometer magically appear in my kitchen. So I halved the recipe, made some substitutions, and winged it with a cup of cold water and a greased Pyrex dish.
If you use slightly over half a cup of honey, half a cup of whole milk, a quarter cup of butter, a quarter cup of organic coconut palm sugar, and the innards from a 3/4-inch section of vanilla bean, cook it to the hard-ball stage more or less according to the instructions from the link, pour it into a coconut-oiled Pyrex, and grind Pink Himalayan Salt over the whole shebang, then cool it in the freezer because you have no patience, your caramels will be darker than the ones pictured with the instructions (sorry, no photos because OM NOM NOM SALTED CARAMEL) but acceptably delicious.
And maybe Simple Truth Organic canola oil in a spray-can isn't as good as Pam cooking spray, or fresh raw honey doesn't act like supermarket honey, or what-have-you, but I tried that "spray the measuring cup and the honey will slide right out" trick and wasn't impressed.
I am still moping for the most part, but my feelings are DELICIOUS. How are all of YOU?