Saturday, October 27, 2007

Friday Night Fun

Anyone who knows my friends realizes that it is close to impossible for us to decide what we are going to do on Friday or Saturday nights. I think already we have watched every movie ever made (all the good ones, that is) and played "Scene It" until the questions were coming out of our ears. Last night was not an exception by any means. After Chad and Josh played a short introductory game of "Settlers of Catan" (I refused to play thanks to Sam's fabulous tactics) we were left sitting with nothing to do. The boys were discussing the stock market and most recent football games while Mykin, Chanel, and myself caught up on each others' individual college lives. One of the biggest problems we face right now is the lack of funding to spend. We really are all poor college students now, which is a huge change from the financial freedom we experienced during our senior year of high school. A corn maze would be fun, yet expensive at the same time when groceries are to be bought in addition to books, housing, and tuition.

Eventually, we came up with a fabulous plan! Make cookies someone said! It was exactly what we needed. So I called up Mommy to double check the use of our kitchen, made a quick stop at the store for some flour, and ran back to the house. In addition to our endeavors of making cookies, we decided to invest in some dry ice and make something really fun. No silly! Not dry ice bombs, even though the thought did cross our teenage minds. We actually bought some flavoring to make homemade root beer! None of us had made it before, luckily a recipe was included on the box of the flavoring. Chanel and Mykin dove into the making of the root beer while Chad, Josh, and myself worked on mixing the cookie dough. "Strong Josh" and Chad cracked the eggs, then criticized me for adding too much vanilla. I personally think that is near impossible to do, but I received plenty of guff for it last night.

A tray of dough finally made it into the oven and the root beer mixture was bubbling furiously from the addition of dry ice. Who knew that teenagers would still be as entertained by the gaseous carbon dioxide as elementary school kids are. We took turns playing with the plumes flowing over the side of the pot, watching the white bubbles for on the surface of the liquid, and trying to throw it at each other. I personally believe more dough was eaten than cookies. Everyone knows the dough is the best part! Who cares about raw eggs anyway? Sadly I forgot about the last tray of cookies in the oven and they got a bit more baked than the others. Nothing blackened, just crunchier. Mom even joined us for a time while we enjoyed our fairly flat root beer and cookies. She even brought out the small amount of vanilla ice cream and we made root beer floats! Yum yum!

Not too long later, we were all stuffed. As I said earlier, none of us had made root beer before so we were not sure how much dry ice we should buy. The guy in the meat department suggested 5 pounds, so that is how much we bought. Turns out that 5 pounds was more than enough to carbonate our draft, so we were left with blocks of dry ice and nothing to do. Now, what can be expected of four teens (Chad was asleep on the couch), lots of time, and a large supply of dry ice? I brought out a few quarters and we proceeded to dig the metal into the ice, thereby freezing the quarters, and our fingers if we held on too long. Spoons filled with water were pressed again the ice to watch in awe with how quickly the water would freeze, sometimes with quarters inside as well. Said frozen quarters and spoons were then meticulously placed on the bare necks of other unaware participants in the festivities. Needless to say, I am amazed Mom did not come out and tell us to be quiet.

Last night was so much fun! We didn't have to spend much money for something that would entertain us for several hours if it hadn't been so late. By the time everyone was going home, I still had four large blocks of ice left. Not wanting them to go to waste, I played for a little longer sticking my CTR ring in and admiring the imprint left in the ice, then seeing how long I could stand having the frozen metal on my finger. Before retiring to bed myself, I cleaned up the cookie mess (yes, I actually do clean up after myself now!) and dumped the remainder of the dry ice into the pot of root beer in hopes of adding a bit more carbonation to the brew. Sadly enough, none of us had a camera to take pictures, only our phones. I really need to invest in a camera to share visuals of my adventures, but I tried to get a couple pictures with my computer. I do hope though that I went into enough gory detail that you could get a good enough image without the use of pictures. If you have any other ideas of things we could do to keep us occupied on these cold fall and winter weekends, it would be greatly appreciated!

This is the effect of having my CTR ring touching a piece of dry ice for several minutes. The details are hard to see, but little crystals had formed all around it making it almost look like a snowflake. Cool stuff!


Lane & Carolyn Howell said...

We've been living in NYC for over 10 months but some things never change...YOU are just as pretty as ever! Thanks for bending over sideways for the pic. It is fun to read all about your Friday night shenanigans.

Homemade cookies, dry ice and root beer extract. Great ideas! Somewhere between the spoonfuls of dough and the overly crunchy remains it sounds as if your cookies turn out perfectly.

Caroline said...

You are such a Howell. Love it!