I've conducted two experiments lately.
First, over on Pioneer Woman's photography blog, they had an article about "giving up your flash for Lent". I read it, and read the basic tutorial on setting your camera to manual and adjusting your shutter and aperture settings yourself.
I took a lot of really dark pictures, but I did get a couple that I liked.
Like this one. (I even froze the dirt falling out of her little hand!)
Unfortunately, I'm not savvy enough to understand the strange hieroglyphics on my camera's screen. I need to study the manual a few more times. And that leads us to ...
Second Experiment: winging ice cream.
My mom has the best ice cream cookbook. We actually trade it back and forth all the time, but at the moment, she has it. There's some really nice non-cooked egg-full vanilla ice cream recipes, if you're using homegrown eggs and are pretty confident that they're fresh.
But there was another one that used just half and half and whipping cream, with no eggs. I figured that such a thing would be simple to find on our health-conscious egg-hating internet.
Every non-egg recipe I found contained something like sweetened condensed milk, or cream cheese, or any number of other super-rich ingredients. I just wanted something with sugar, half and half, and whipping cream. Finally I gave up in exasperation. I had a half pint of whipping cream and a quart of half and half. I figured if I mixed that with enough sugar and vanilla, it'd start tasting like ice cream eventually.
2 cups sugar
2 Tablespoons vanilla extract
1 half pint whipping cream
1 quart half and half
1 cup milk
I creamed the sugar, vanilla and whipping cream until it was stiff, that being the fun of using whipping cream. Then I poured in half and half while running the hand mixer, until the mixing bowl was so full that I was starting to splatter my countertop. Then I poured the rest into the ice cream drum, along with all the rest of the half and half and the milk, jammed the hand mixer down in the drum as far as it would go, and ran it until the mixture frothed.
I had read that you want to stir it until the sugar dissolves or it'll make huge grainy ice crystals, so I stirred it for a while with a wooden spoon until it didn't sound grainy anymore. Then I stuck it in the machine and ran it according to the manufacturer's directions. Because all recipes say that.
It was deemed a success by all and sundry. It was nice and rich, and I didn't miss the eggs at all. I'm hoping that it will stay fluffy as it freezes, but generally my ice cream sets up like a brick and requires ten minutes of defrosting before you can chip any off it. Ah well.