I finally got my yeast mojo back. Woohoo!!!
Dave from Dave's Killer Bread did a spot on everydaydish. I used his recipe for whole wheat bread. Came out great. I eat Dave's bread from the grocery store all the time, though the stuff Dave sells is much more complex. Thanks to A Bears Fare and veg*ns are friends not food for pointing it out.
I should have added a bit more water because my KitchenAid mixer was having some issues. I made a normal looking loaf and I tried a ring in a bundt pan. It stuck, as you can see by the huge dig marks in the sides of the ring in the pictures below. Definitely need to oil the pan next time.
Keys to getting over my many failures w/ yeast. Hopefully they will work again in the future.
*used more yeast than called for
*roasted yams and did other oven intensive things
*kept oven at 200 and left bread on oven door during second rising. I figure this is cheaper than heating the whole house.