Fearsome bakes

Classic Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies!

I’m filling in for my dear friend Polly tomorrow. We have a regular Monday evening meeting we attend together every week. She is the current cookie supplier for this coffee clatch. Polly is in The Big Apple for the holiday so I’m stepping in. Polly is also a retired pastry chef so I have big shoes to fill.

I figure I’m safe with a tested classic favorite. Simple, easy and damn good. Here is how you do it: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and use the following ingredients…

  1. 2 1/4 cups flour
  2. 1 tsp. Baking soda
  3. 1 tsp. Salt
  4. 1 cup (2 sticks) butter softened
  5. 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  6. 3/4 cup brown sugar
  7. 1 1/4 tsp. Vanilla
  8. 2 large eggs
  9. 2 cups Semi Sweet chocolate chips
  10. -optional- 1 cup chopped nuts

In separate bowl mix four, baking soda & salt then set aside. In the main mixing bowl beat butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla until mixed well then beat in eggs to the mixture. Then beat in the flour mixture to complete the cookie batter. Hand stir in the chocolate chips and nuts if nuts are desired.

Drop the batter using a heaping teaspoon onto non-greased cookie sheets then bake 9-10 minutes at the 375 degrees F or until just golden brown then let cool for a couple minutes on the cookie sheet before removing with a spatula to a cooling rack or towel. This should yield you about 4dozen cookies.


Cookie Dough!

Cookie Dough!

This 1947 oven has seen its share of cookies.

This 1947 oven has seen its share of cookies.

Perfection! Smells so good in here!

Smells so good in here!


Lessons from the Pacific Crest Trail

A little while back I mentioned that the brother of a friend was blogging his travels on foot from Mexico to Canada via the Pacific Crest Trail. The trail that the film Wild made famous.

His name is Matt and his blog is linked over in our Fearsome Buds Blogroll. Just click Traveling Matt and you will land on his page. His story is fascinating. The pictures are great and the prose well written. If you have a hankering for reading about a personal journey and adventure, I suggest starting at the beginning. I think you will find it an enjoyable read. At this point he is only about 1/3 of his way through the trek so far.

Yesterday I had a moment to get caught up on reading his tales of the trail and stumbled upon this passage:

“As for lessons from the trail, the requirement to carry your possessions such distances does indeed make you rethink what is really necessary. Your possessions are a burden on the trail, and so their benefit must absolutely outweigh that burden. This is true in normal life as well, but the burden is less noticeable in the short-term and it’s easier to be convinced that the benefits of your possessions outweigh the burdens; on the trail it becomes a simple analysis of weight versus utility, and few items pass the hurdle.”

You can find the full post from which that passage came HERE.

Fearsome’s little blog thingy we have here is about growth. It’s the contemplation of life. It’s about meaning. We like to share our inspirations. Traveling Matt is a blog of inspiration.


Don’t let hope become a memory

I feel like we’ve been posting more music than prose. I know that if I’m feeling that way that most likely that is the truth. However music is what is moving me right now and apparently Fearsome as well.

The other day when we posted about Paul Simon’s latest, called Wristband, we stumbled upon and interview where he was asked about a certain remake of his classic Sound of Silence by Disturbed. I wasn’t familiar with Disturbed. Even though I have never ever cared for Sound of Silence, for some unknown reason I was persuaded by Paul’s positive remarks about this cover to pop over to YouTube for a gander.

I was moved. I was also surprised as since I was a child I really disliked Sound of Silence.  I was so moved that this video and the music hasn’t left my head.

As YouTube does, other videos by Disturbed were recommended. I’m really starting to like these guys.

The words for the title of this post come from their song Light. The video is graphic. The lyrics and music are driving and positive. Definately words to contemplate.

I’ve been reminiscing as I am about to travel back east to help my mother sell off many of my father’s possessions. I’ve felt a bit stuck of recent and there are a few dark corners. Today I will contemplate how I can use the dark to show me the light.

Darkness is always there. Light is always there as well. Without the dark we wouldn’t appreciate the light. Appreciate that light I will.


Intriguing Beat

Paul Simon. Talent, longevity, creative, political, stimulating, artistic, fabulous.

I’ve always enjoyed the man’s music. Above I listed just the first few words that entered my mind as I typed his name. He has a new tune out, named Wristband, that will soon be followed by a new album called Stranger to Stranger.

I’ve been listening to this new diddy on the radio for just about a month. I liked it immediately. It gets my toes a tappin on the floorboard as Fearsome bobs up and down in the windshield like one of those little bobbing dogs for the dashboard. It wasn’t until yesterday that I really listened to the lyrics. Thus I add a new adjective to those I listed above, insightful.

Above is my familiar radio version and it just happened to have the lyrics that I hadn’t really been paying much attention to, until yesterday.

Below is a live performance that he did on The Prarie Home Companion apparently debuting the song just three months ago before its release a couple months later. This is a treasure to watch.

May I be as talented, vibrant and insightful at 75 as Mr. Paul Simon.


Gratitude, it takes practice

It’s no secret here on Fearsome Beard that we have our soft side. Our soft side is not only how wonderfuly supple Aveda shampoos and conditioners leave Fearsome, but also that we are often inspired by Oprah and her guests on our path of personal growth. One of our long time favorites and previously posted is Brene Brown.

Below is a clip of one of her appearances on Super Soul Sunday:

Quotes I found powerful that I wish to contemplate today:

  1. “Cultivating gratitude is the way home.”
  2. “Gratitude, you have to work at it.”
  3. “There is no joy without gratitude.”
  4. “The most terrifying emotion is joy.”
  5. “When we loose our tolerance to be vulnerable, joy becomes verboding.”
  6. “Actively practice gratitude.”

For me, allowing my vulnerability to show …gives me freedom.

Being vulnerable means being honest. Being honest exposes me. Exposing me takes strenght. Strength gives me freedom. Freedom gives you (and me) me.

Vulnerability takes courage. Gratitude takes practice. Both produce Joy. Joy is my goal.