A Winter Storm Warning = Sugar Cookies (Part 1)
Well, well, well......today is Saturday, February 8th. This evening is the Black Tie Calf Fry (fundraiser) for Chadron State College's Rodeo Team. Cowgirl Swank is donating a couple of caps for the silent auction and we made plans to go. I was looking forward to it. In fact, I have had my outfit planned for several days.....well, it's actually the outfit I was going to wear to read my poem "The Storm Atlas" at the Black Hills Stock Show Ranch Rodeo Finals, but we all know how that turned out....Mother Nature intervened and I wasn't able to go.
Well, she's at it again.....we are now under a winter storm warning until Sunday at noon. How lovely of her to be so kind once again. I swear.....I'm about ready to call her out to go behind the wood shed!! UGH!!! It's snowing.....big, fluffy flakes. It's actually beautiful outside.....but cold. I just got in from filling up the horse's water tank and feeding them some hay. Shane is over helping my folks sort some heifers. My brother and his two boys should be here soon as there are plans to work some heifers tomorrow. Once in awhile they come down to help my folks. Anyway, tomorrow is the day the vet is scheduled for and it's going to be the coldest day of the week....of course, doesn't it always seem to be that way lately?! Excuse me for sounding so glum, but well, I guess I am.....that's just the way it is!
Even though I get grumpy about our weather, I am still appreciative for the beauty in nature (supplied by Mother Nature, of course). Look at the gorgeous sunrise she displayed this morning!
This was at first light. Sights like this make me happy to be alive....especially after I got back in our warm house and had my first cup of coffee! It's the simple things in life that are the best!
Several hours later the snow began to fall....lightly at first, and now we are under a warning! It's amazing how quickly things can change. I do cuss her, but I have a very deep respect for Mother Nature....that will never change.
This picture was taken around lunch time. It was snowing pretty good by then.
Then it really started coming down. The flakes were as big as saucers.....well, maybe not that big, but you get the idea! Our horses were so happy that I took pity on them!
And the heifers were all snuggled in on the creek eating hay.
All is good outside......plus, we have about a month to go before we start calving so the snow and cold weather aren't a huge concern for us. The ice has been a big issue. Shane has noticed that a handful of our cows have slunk (aborted) their calves. This is always a huge worry. Normally what happens is that they slip on the ice on their way to water up. It's really just something that happens. It's disconcerting, but it's out of our hands for the most part. Every year there is a percentage of every rancher's herd that don't calve (for various reasons). We just keep our fingers crossed and pray that the percentage is small......and that the ice leaves quickly!
Stone and I were in the house today. With Valentine's Day approaching I decided today was a great day to make sugar cookies. I love to share these cookies with our friends, neighbors, and loved ones. I'm really picky about sugar cookies.....any old cookie just won't do. I like the big, thick, rolled out sugar cookies. It's fun to cut them into different shapes and decorate them. This is something that Stone and I love to do. I truly cherish every moment like this.....I can always hope that at 18 he will continue to want to make these with me, but I already know how fast time is going so I cling just a little bit harder! :)
If you've been searching for a great sugar cookie recipe I have just the one for you! I have been making this same recipe for five years and it hasn't failed me yet! The cookie recipe is unbeatable in my opinion.....as is the recipe for the icing. I found both on Allrecipes.com. They are both keepers and my "Go To" recipes. I've even made cookie bouquets from this recipe (stick a sucker stick halfway in the cookie before baking and voila....a cookie on a stick!). Here is the Sugar Cookie Recipe. The recipe itself is super easy, but these do take some time to make. For instance, I already mixed the dough, but I'm letting it sit until tomorrow in the fridge when I have time to commit to baking and decorating. Here is the printed out version of the recipe:
The Best Rolled Sugar Cookies
1 ½ cups of butter, softened
2 cups of white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
5 cups of flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth.
Beat in eggs and vanilla.
Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out dough on floured surface 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.
*This recipe will take until tomorrow for me to complete. I plan to bake the cookies and decorate them then. I will post how that process goes and share with you the most amazing sugar cookie icing out there!*
I think I'm going to see what the plan is now. Shane still isn't home yet, which means we will most likely be staying home tonight. Lots of times I've changed our plans to match the weather forecast. I've gotten used to it......sometimes I do get frustrated (especially when it means a lot to me).....sometimes I just sigh and say, "Oh well". I guess this is one of those times.....I certainly can't do anything to change it. I may just venture over to my folks' in a while with Stone so we can all enjoy the evening and get in a good visit. Sounds good to me! Stay warm! ~Cheyenne