happy-birthday-david-lee-reynolds-junior cake!

HAPPIEST BIRTHDAY TO THE BEST BROTHER IN THE WORLD!

Ok ok. His birthday was actually Thursday. But I’m celebrating now! It breaks my heart I couldn’t deliver this cake in person. I did get to have a nice long chat with him on his special day. Which made me realize how much I miss him. I MISS YOU!

Here are 10 things to know about David Lee Reynolds Jr.

10. One day, you may have the pleasure of meeting this handsome lad. He’ll probably introduce himself as “Dave.” Listen. His name is David Lee. Or, Dave-a-leaf for all you three year olds out there who can’t quite get it all out. I can’t quite tell you why he ended up David Lee, but he did. You may also hear us refer to him as D.L.R.J.R., Bado, or Weiner (reserved for older sister’s use ONLY!)

9. David Lee played trumpet in band and marching band. This impacted his life hugely (he then went on to VaTech for music education and is now an elementary music school teacher!). But it impacted my life too! I also played trumpet in band. And before that, I was a self-described marching band-aid. He’d let me hang out with him and the band during football games. Mom and I would literally show up just for the half time show at some Hokie football games. The halftime show (when a marching band is involved) is arguably my favorite part of football.

8. David Lee was #1 tennis player in the state of Virginia in high school. Well. Maybe he was just #1 at BHS? No no. #1 in Virginia. At least that’s what I knew to be true when I was 8 so I’m sure it’s true. His tennis skills also translated to the ping pong table. I credit him for any ping pong skills I may have.

7. David Lee was a wolverine for halloween when he was 12? 13? This meant a complete, mascot-like wolverine costume that was furry and SCARY to his 6 year old sister. He would take just the hand of the costume and put it on his bed to keep me out. It worked. (and on days he didn’t put the hand there, I would proceed to take a full inventory of his room. in writing. I hope we have that around somewhere.)

6. David Lee is probably the happies guy you’d ever meet. Seriously. The kid doesn’t have bad days. He bounces back from what should be soul-shattering events so quickly and simply lets the bad times roll off his back. It’s inspiring. (and makes his insanely emotional little sister incredibly jealous).

5. DLRJR is what I would describe as a “techy.” He knows more about computers and software and websites then I could ever begin to understand. Really. You have a question about your Mac? Call him up. He knows the answer. You want to know when the next big thing is coming down the line in Apple computers? He’ll tell you all about it and by the end of the conversation you will be ready to buy one yourself.

4. David Lee is passionate. When he’s got an idea he will run with it. While he might agree that this is probably his biggest strength (and maybe biggest weakness), when he gets excited about something, nothing will get in his way. And his passion is contagious. Chances are you’ll be ready to get behind him. Whether its for his newest online venture or the cheer that he starts at the A’s game.

3. While he is the happiest guy you’ll meet, he’s probably also the busiest. At any given moment he has 30980 projects he’s working on. They typically involve music–teaching it or playing it. The man doesn’t stop. During our birthday conversation, I instructed him to have a day by the pool with a beer. I hope he follows that instruction.

2. As I’ve said above, you’d probably be ready to support dave-a-leaf in whatever he’s doing. But the best part? He’ll support you in whatever you’re doing! He is free of judgment and willing and able to see the good in all things. His patience has been honed by growing up in a house full of women and he will listen to what’s going on in your life whether it’s knitting, baking, the LSAT… and he’ll be genuinely interested! and tell you good things that make you feel good!

1. I am one lucky girl to have him as a big brother. I hope he knows that I love him to pieces! If not, David Lee: I love you to pieces!!!!

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Lemon Poppyseed Muffins

Yall! It’s FRIDAY! I thought I’d share these (very lemony) muffins with you! I love muffins mostly because they’re an excuse to have dessert for breakfast! Yum. They’re also super easy and quick. No mixer required. Bonus!

I anticipate this post will have lots of exclamation points! Because it’s Friday! I am finishing a very rough week at work/in life. Sleep deprivation has taken me off my A game which is why there are only two things on this weekend’s to-do list:

1. SLEEP!

2. BLOG!

#2 is particularly important. I will be baking a cake! For my brother’s birthday! However, he lives in Virginia and so I will only be able to share it with him via le blog. But he probably likes the internet more than he likes eating baked goods. And I don’t mind eating cake for two people. win-win.    !

Let’s talk more muffins:

That is in fact pink wine, ladies and gentlemen. It goes very well with all shades of baking! I can’t remember why I needed this bottle of wine. I just remember that I drank it. All. And if you know me, you know I’m the kind of person who will choose a wine on its label. This one was no exception! And! PINK! WINE!

Lemon Sugar!

You’re gonna have this step where you use your hands to mix lemon zest with sugar. It’s really satisfying. I don’t know why. It starts to feel like wet sand. And it feels great.

Batter! yum!

Dessert! For breakfast!

 I adapted this recipe:

2/3 cup granulated sugar

zest and juice of 1 lemon

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

3/4 cup buttermilk or sour cream

2 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 stick butter, melted until browned and cooled

2 Tablespoons poppy seeds

2 Tablespoons granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 400. Line muffin pan with muffin liners.

In a large bowl, use your hands to mix together the zest and sugar to make lemon sugar. Whisk in the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

In a separate bowl, mix together the buttermilk, eggs, vanilla, butter, and lemon juice.

Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and fold together. Add poppy seeds at the last second and mix in.

Divide batter into muffin cups (about 3/4 full). Sprinkle tops with 2 tbs sugar.

Bake for 15-18 minutes until tops are golden and a skewer inserted comes out clean.

Let cool for a couple minutes in the pan, and then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

Enjoy!