Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Be My Guest: Opposites Really Do Attract

Today I've decided to give you all, my beloved readers, a bit of a break. You can thank me later (OR you can thank me by stopping by again on Friday when I'll be publishing another post. Yeah, do that second one).

It's been a while since I bribed, persuaded, cajoled, wheedled, coaxed (you get the idea) someone to write a guest post for my blog. 

Seems I'd been doing it all wrong. Instead of twisting someone's arm (College Boy, I'm looking at you), I should have been taking another approach. Entice, that's the ticket. With a little quid pro quo (a term I can now use since everyone in this country knows what that means). 

My friend Rena McDaniel was looking for a guest post for one of her three (yes, three) blogs, The Diary of an Alzheimer's Caregiver. I'd written a piece, not about Alzheimer's specifically, but a personal account of my feelings when I lost my dad to the disease. I was happy to let her share it with her readers . . . for a price . . .

Today she's paying up. So lucky you (and lucky me for having such a great friend), I have the honor of sharing what Rena took time out from her busy day week month life to write for Baking In A Tornado.

Be My Guest, guest post blogging series. | Graphic created by and property of www.BakingInATornado.com | #blogging #MyGraphics

First I want to thank Rena for taking the time to share her post today. But most of all I want to thank her for her kind words, her unconditional support and her friendship. Be sure to visit her blogs, she offers something for everyone:

And I'm going to let Rena introduce herself:

I'm Rena and I'm a 50 year old child in an old woman's body. I love to take long road trips, build websites and write stories about my adventures or even the latest trip to the grocery store. I'm a wife of 29 years, a mom and a grandma and I run my own web design/maintain/troubleshooting business. When I'm not creating CSS, or piled up in the passenger seat of our car, you will find me happily playing with my grand kids, reading a book, or wrapped around a cheeseburger!

Opposites Really Do Attract

Karen and I have been friends for a few years now and even though we've never met IRL, she has seen me through some of the most painful lows and celebrated my highest highs. I love her dearly and consider her one of my very best friends BUT we are total opposites!

I absolutely love to cook, which we definitely have in common, but loving to cook and being good at it aren't always the same thing. Love definitely doesn't equal skill.

Karen can open her refrigerator, look at its contents and come up with a 10 course meal that is not only delicious but picture perfect. I can take a well written recipe and mangle it so badly it doesn't even resemble what I was trying to achieve. 

It will either be burned or undercooked. I will have injuries such as burns or cuts. The kitchen usually ends up in disaster just like whatever it is I'm attempting. I actually used to be what I'd consider a good cook, back when I had a gas stove and half a brain.

I threw dinner parties on Sundays and have served upwards of 20 people. Hell, I even cooked all of the food for my very own wedding! That was almost 30 years ago and since then my body and brain have been beaten senselessly. 

Today things like adding and subtracting doesn't come easily for me. Things like ingredients can become so overwhelming that I often just throw in what I think goes . . . mostly it doesn't. My poor sweet husband has suffered through so many bad meals that I'm surprised he doesn't have stomach issues, or asked for a divorce.

I once served my family a bloody turkey on Thanksgiving because I couldn't figure out time vs weight. I also don't understand spices. I love them, buy them all. I'm a sucker for a pretty jar but I often use too much or forget to add them altogether.

I come to Karen's site for guidance, inspiration and even to whine when things go wrong. I have made some of Karen's recipes and they were actually successful. She taught me how to make a cheese sauce that my husband begs for and would eat every single day! I also made her Marinara sauce that was well received, but these days take-out is king at my house!

Got you covered, Rena. Here's a recipe anyone can follow:

Mocha Butterfingers Milkshake, vanilla and mocha flavored ice cream is infused with butterfingers candy bits for a unique sweet treat. | Recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #sweet

Mocha Butterfingers Milkshake 
Mocha Butterfingers Milkshake, vanilla and mocha flavored ice cream is infused with butterfingers candy bits for a unique sweet treat. | Recipe developed by www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #sweet

Baking In A Tornado signature | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics

Mocha Butterfingers Milkshake        

Ingredients (per milkshake):
1/3 cup brewed coffee
2 TBSP French vanilla creamer
1 1/2 cups vanilla ice cream
1 TBSP chocolate syrup
1/2 cup finely chopped Butterfingers candies

*Mix the creamer into the coffee. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
Place the ice cream, coffee and chocolate syrup in a blender and blend until smooth. 
*Add the chopped Butterfingers and blend again until fully incorporated.
*For a thinner milkshake: blend in up to 1/4 cup of milk, a little at a time.
*For a thicker milkshake: freeze for an hour.


  1. Rena, I think you and I must be related. In my early cooking years, I could put a decent meal on the table. Now they don’t let me in the kitchen unless it is to slide a frozen dinner into the oven and that on occasion has proven hazardous to me.
    Web design I tried and failed. We’re maybe not kin after all.
    A first cousin passed away last weekend Alzheimer’s. In talking with some other cousins, there was 21 of them at one time, I found that the husband of another has early onset Alzheimer’s. It has not touched me personally, but I’ve seen the sorrow.

    1. We may be related although I've had a front row seat for the horrors that Alz brings out. I lost my mom last year after taking care of her for almost a decade. Now I can finally just eat out!

  2. If I am very careful with the coffee pot, I think I can do this with out being burned. Mmm!

  3. Rena, I feel your pain! It's actually nice to know someone as brilliant as you still struggles in some areas! ;)
    And I'm already drooling over that milkshake, Karen. Milkshakes are my greatest temptation!

    1. This is the time for milkshakes, if we're stuck in the house, we may as well indulge!

    2. I don't know about brilliant, but I love you for saying that! I had to spell check brilliant if that tells you anything lol!

  4. LOL I was so used to cooking for a large family and now that it's just the hubs and me I have a horrible time calculating less. It's less fun to cook for two also but this last week I'm having a bit of fun with it.

    1. I just make the same amount and freeze half for another day.
      And yes, having fun with ingredients is something I'm appreciating more while stuck in the house.

    2. That's exactly my problem (& I'm sticking to it), but my hubby works late several times a week so it's just me for dinner. B-OR-ING! It's easier to just order take out. Plus today is National Take Out Day!

  5. I'm thankful, my family calls me the Queen of ThrowTogethers because I can throw together ingredients and come up with a great meal. The curse to that is trying to "write" the recipe. LOL
    Rena don't worry, your family has survived thus far and once you're in the RV hubs can do the cooking on the grill.
    Dawn aka Spatulas On Parade

    1. That ability to throw things together is going to come in very handy for the next I don't know how long.

    2. That's my plan! He's a mean griller!

  6. My idea of cooking is "open package, peel back plastic, microwave for 5 minutes...". When I was young I didn't do dinners for 20 but I loved to bake and even tried to make strudel (OK, that one was a disaster). I am banned from the kitchen except for when it is dish washing time. Even if I had Karen at my side I would be banned. Fortunately, my husband loves to cook, and has made a couple of Karen's recipes. May he stay healthy at this dire moment in history. Alana ramblinwitham.blogspot.com

    1. You either really can't cook, or you're smart as a fox. Not sure which one.


Warning: Comment at your own risk. I have Comment Moderation, meaning I approve all comments before they show up here. So go ahead, I'm not scared!