Baking Therapy

It’s that time of year again.

Suddenly, everything you thought you had under control sneaks up behind you and swallows you up. That paper you had another 4 weeks to do is now due in two days.  Which is fine because you have all day tomorrow to do it… until a little reminder pops up on your phone that you agreed to put in a few extra shifts at work.  Which seemed like a really great idea two weeks ago when you looked at your schedule and realized that all of your classes for that day would be finished…

Oh ya, and your parents are reminding you that Easter is next weekend and they are expecting you to come home and help prepare the beautiful feast for your family dinner.  And not just the normal immediate family like you usually host, but this year they decided to invite some old aunts and uncles, neighbours, and that colleague that just transferred here from out of town. There goes another day that you could have been studying for your multiple exams on Easter Monday.

Who schedules an exam for Easter Monday!? Now, I realize not everyone celebrates Easter but you can’t deny that you could use one more day off…

I will stop now, as I may be stressing many of you out {this is a scary reality for many of you who read my blog}.  Just know you are not alone…

So what do you do?  Somehow actually doing work seems to make things worse.  Since McMaster gave us a pathetic 10-day Christmas break I know that I am burnt out.  Eight months of school and I think I have fractured my brain.  It’s a real thing–I am in Neuroscience…you should trust me 🙂

Solution: Therapy

If you asked me any time before the last four months I would have said “Retail Therapy”, but I am moving into my very own place *exactly one month from today!* and so spending money on anything but house-ware items is out of the question.  I can prove to you that I am serious about saving because last Saturday I found myself trying to kill an hour in a mall, went into Zara’s {who has a fabulous spring collection btw} tried multiple things on, fell into a deep love, and still left the store empty handed. Bitter sweet. Mostly bitter.

Don’t worry, I don’t mean actual therapy.  Although I probably do need actual therapy… try to suppress my obsessive, addictive desires towards cinnamon and aeroplan {110 points baby! 12 890 to go!}.

My solution recently has been baking therapy.

And today couldn’t have been a more perfect day.

We held office hours today to hand back the research papers that students had to write in the Introductory Psychology course I TA for.  There were 2000 papers to hand back.  Two thousand. Hi! The line was snaking around the entire 4th floor of the building and then down the stairs.  It didn’t help that the average for this project is slightly low and students were slightly unhappy and I am slighlty under-exaggerating right now.

Luckily my new friends at Hotti Biscotti invited me to come by and bake with them today!

Although we have been friends in the twitter-verse for a few weeks now, this is the first time I was formally introduced to 50% of the mother-and-son baking team that make the magic at Hotti Biscotti.

Mother-and-son duo Debby and Louis Stroud are coming up on their 1 year anniversary of Westdale’s Hotti Biscotti bake shop. Sadly, Debby was out of town and I did not get a chance to meet her, but Louis warmly welcomed me to the shop much like he welcomes all of his customers.

The other thing that warmly welcomed me and every other customer to walk down Marion St. and into the shop was the amazing smell of baking biscotti, cinnamon, and sugar.

I started therapy right away working on these Snowballs, the melt-in-your-mouth shortbread with toasted almonds and powdered sugar:

Obviously, in true Red fashion I made a HUGE mess.  Mostly of myself but actually there was icing sugar everywhere–who am I kidding.

I wish you could have seen my arms.

Thankfully Louis let me stay and continue to help out.

I got to indulge in all sorts of amazing treats like these Peanut Butter Wonder Pops:

A) These are so cute I want to die!

B) I want to eat so many of these I may die.

So much Peanut Butter.

So much Wonder.

So much Pop!.

To end the day?

Hello GIANT Reese’s Pieces Cookie Pie!

Tart + Cookie batter+ Chocolate+ Reece’s Pieces bits.

You don’t even have to taste it to taste how good it is.

Imagine you pulled back your bed covers tonight and found this:

I want to thank Louis at Hotti Biscotti SO MUCH for curing me of my illness today!  I loved every minute of it and will lend my hands whenever they are needed!  Congrats on your 1 year anniversary coming up this Saturday March 31st. For those of you in the Hamilton area, stop by Hotti Biscotti {1008 King St. West @ Marion} this Saturday between 1PM-6PM for FREE BISCOTTI! Also, come hungry because there will be eating contests every hour on the hour!

Of course, just in case there was still a little crazy left in me, baking therapy continued tonight with my beautiful Kate as we made these Vanilla Pudding Chocolate Chip Cookies that I blogged about here last month.

I want to let you know that after reflecting on today, I am not baked out, but I do need to start focusing on school again…

If I wake up as a biscotti tomorrow then you will know it was because I ate a dozen biscotti today.




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