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Mutant Zucchini Bread

The Spicy Child hates and despises bananas in all forms, including banana bread. She’ll *eat* banana bread, but only a little, and only because it reminds her in some small way of zucchini bread, which is her favorite.

The end of August is generally the start of Mutant Zucchini Season: those bigguns that get left in the garden plot, surprise you suddenly with their Hindenburg proportions, and leave most people pale and staggering under the weight of trying to drop them off on unsuspecting neighbors in the middle of the night.

I’ve heard rural myths that some people even deliberately go to church late, and leave bags of Mutant Zukes in the front seats of fellow congregants’ unlocked cars.

I like mutant zucchini. They’re easier to grate up and freeze in 2-cup portions, and then I can bake Mutant Zucchini Bread all winter.

Mutant Zucchini Bread is by no stretch of imagination “healthy”. But it’s better for you than chemical-laden production cake, and it’s made with love, so that makes it suitable for breakfast. It also freezes well.

This recipe works at elevations of 3500-5500 feet above sea level. Alterations to the leavening level would be needful above or below that.

High Altitude Mutant Zucchini Bread

  • 3 beaten eggs
  • 2 cups sugar (white or white with brown)
  • scant 1 cup vegetable oil for a very dense cake; use shortening for a lighter one.
  • 1-2 tablespoons vanilla. I think this covers up the veggie scent really well.
  • 2 cups grated zucchini, fresh; or 2 cups grated, frozen, thawed, and well-squoze
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1-2 tsp Saigon cinnamon (more if using cheaper, less flavorful stuff)

There’s no complex method here; dump it all together and mix til pretty smooth.

Heat the oven to 350* and line two loaf pans with baking parchment.

Spread the goop into the pans as evenly as possible, and bake until done.

(Until Done is actually between 30-40 minutes at elevations of around 5000 feet above sea level. You’re looking for browning edges that are pulling slightly away from the paper, and a “crumby” toothpick to the middle. The recipe card I copied from my own mother doesn’t have the actual time. This is a Best Judgement sort of thing.)

This is quite sweet, so you don’t need a glaze or anything. Spread slices with softened cream cheese if you like.

To freeze, let it cool completely, then wrap the whole loaf in plastic cling, then a freezer bag (or double wrap in parchment and then the freezer bag.) Or, slice and briefly freeze individual slices, then wrap for longer freezer storage. Single slices pack well in a picnic lunch; they’ll defrost to edible in a few hours. You can also bake the batter in muffin cups (about 20-24 minutes) for already-portioned treats.

You could make citrus variations by decreasing the oil a tad and replacing it with orange juice concentrate, plus orange zest in the batter, or do the same with lemon juice and zest.

And, of course, you CAN do this recipe with normal-sized zucchini, but those are really nice in curry, all tender and lovely, so maybe save the big guys for this?

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Larval-stage Church Lady

Larval-stage Church Lady

I’ve written before of that miraculous, wonderful creature known as The Church Lady. As I get further into my own career as a Church Lady, I’m starting to see some amazing benefits to my daughters as well, and I thought it was about time to write about how to build a Church Lady… because it really is a process, and it’s one I think can benefit most young people (not just girls).

Our middlest girl, the Spicy one, turned ten this year. She’s decided that, like her sister Eldest, it’s time for her to get to join me in serving at funeral suppers, and the other little tasks that seem to her to be hallmarks of Being Grown Up. The month of May marked her first experiences as a larval Church Lady… and what a happy little larva she is, too!

Watching her carefully choose her outfit for the first funeral luncheon (the funeral of one of our neighbors), watching her choose which pretty apron she would bring, folding it into a neat little bundle–I hoped that her experience would be a good one. I’m realistic. I can set up a situation to be as positive as possible, but it’s still going to be her experience, and that experience is between her little self and her Heavenly Father. I have to go into it all trusting that He loves her, and will give her the learning she needs, when she needs it. The First Funeral Luncheon and whatever learning it contained would have to be in His hands.

That trust was richly confirmed.

Our Church Lady In Charge is amazing. That helps a lot. Our fellow Church Ladies are generally awesome. That also helps a lot. They’ve each welcomed my girls into the fold as capital-S Sisters, and it is a joy and a blessing to me.

I quietly undertook my own assigned tasks for the luncheon, and did not interfere or direct Spicy in her work. She took her marching orders from our organizing Sister, who, being amazing, tucked Spicy under her wing and treated her with the same respect and friendliness given to the longest-serving Sister among us.

I was delighted when our organizing Sister reiterated what I had told Spicy on our way over: how to receive thanks from the family with a smile and “It’s our pleasure to serve. We’re glad to be here,” or “It’s no trouble at all. We love our Sister and want to help out any way we can,” or “We’re glad to do it.”

I watched Spicy ask intelligent questions. I watched her spring to lift things that the more fragile Sisters (one who is actually eye-to-eye with my none-too-tall 10yo!) should not lift. Her young legs and back were useful. I watched her take the instruction to “keep an eye on the water pitchers” to heart, as she zipped here and there, refilling pitchers and delivering them back with a smile and cheerful word.

I watched her visit with the Grandpas and Aunties and little children, as she made sure they had what they needed. I watched her clever little feet tip-tap briskly, carrying her from service to service, her muscled little body swathed in her best pretty apron.

I watched her take special care of our Sister who had lost her husband after an all-too-brief 66 years of marriage. I watched her seeing how love and tears and sadness and joy and grief and hope all work together.

As we wrapped it all up, I watched her eyes sparkle. I watched her watching the other Sisters as we all took off our aprons to signal the finality of our service, fold them into neat bundles, and disperse to our homes again.

And on the way home, she fairly bubbled over with happiness and observations and the recounting of her experience. The quote that made my day:

“I am going to need some good flats. I just cannot do funeral luncheons in these heels!”

I’m convinced that any young girl can benefit richly from these kinds of experiences. If anyone raising girls is wanting them to experience more connection, more compassion, more happiness, more self-respect, more cability–being built as a Junior Church Lady and serving alongside older sisters in Christ is a significant and simple way to get there.

If you’d like to build your own Church Lady, or are looking for ways to add connection and service for pre-teen or teen youth groups in a church setting, here are my top tips for making it work:

A True Invitation: I am 100% opposed to voluntelling. It’s a gross usurpation of agency, and quite frankly, it’s disrespectful and despicable.

A true invitation is low-key and sincere, and has a clear path to inclusion. There is no carrot-and-stick. It’s as simple as, “We are doing this cool thing, and we’d love to have you join us. Here’s how. Let me know if you’d like to, and we’ll make it happen.”

A True Mentor: partner them with adult Sisters who consider young people Actual People. Being tucked under the loving instructional wing of someone who likes you just for you, and has no genetic requirement to do so, is a wonderfully expanding thing for a young person. (It’s also pretty awesome for the adult Sister, too, if the ladies in my acquaintance are any representative sample. Spending time working together knits our hearts together, and that benefits young and old.)

These true mentors can be very helpful when they share their own motivations for service, and their own good experiences. I’ve noticed that the Church Ladies in my life have been ready, willing, and able to share with others *why* we serve, and that the reasons are varied and individual.

Having heard several Sisters visiting in the kitchen with Spicy about why they enjoy serving at funerals, I was delighted to hear her express her own personal motivation for service at the second funeral this month: “I don’t know this family, but I think every family should get some time to just be together, and tell stories that make them happy, even though it’s a sad time. And it’s fun to make sure everyone has what they need!”

Those are good reasons to serve. And she got there because adult women were able and willing to articulate similar reasons, and help her define the feelings she had bubbling in her tender little soul.

A True Need: no one likes to be made superfluous. Ask a young person to fulfill a meaningful task, and thank them for their help simply and sincerely and privately. Let them have the private pleasure of a job well done and truly appreciated.

The Uniform: You need the right clothes for the task. According to my Spicy child, and confirmed by the Ladies in the kitchen, the starter gear consists of Comfortable Flat Shoes, and a Pretty Apron. So you’ll need to provide those for your dear one.

(Blog rules say no single blog post should ever, ever be this long, and by the Rules, I should have about 40 cute pinnable pictures posted in here by now. Hence my tag line: Rebelling in Small Ways. Read on, MacDuff.)

Now, some practical application things if you’re trying to build some Church Ladies.

Be One Yourself. I think it does work best when Mom already has a habit of giving joyful service in ways that suit her time and her talents. If you’re not already there… well, it’s a great day to start. Pray about it. Find out what Heavenly Father wants you to do, personally, to be His hands and feet and love in the world. Then do that. And share words about it with your kids. Not bragging words, just… words. Let them know what you’re doing, and why, and that they can do it to, and how.

Do Some Lead-Up. Few people like to be thrown into something cold. So suggest some activities for the youth that introduce skills and concepts they can use in Church Lady service. Perhaps baking, or freezer meals, or other food-type skills they’ll use in college, mission, and adult life. Let them learn some basics together. These can be great additions to Personal Progress planning and activities. Then:

Have An Easy-Intro Service Opp. One simple thing I’ve done is to invite the young women to participate when I take around a sign-up sheet for New Baby meals. It takes only a few seconds to blurb it, and let them know they’re welcome to partner up and bake a treat for a meal, or work with their mom, auntie, grandma, or another Sister to help with a meal.

Let them know there are ways to ease into it, too. If they’re not up for food prep or service during the luncheon? They could come over and set up tables, or come after for take-down and sweeping. Those portions of service are vital, and still ripe with camaraderie.

Do Some Pre-Service Prep. Many young people have not been around much death, or around grieving rituals. Let them know what to expect, and some simple phrases to use in response to family thanking them, and that sort of thing. Do it all in conversational tones. This stuff is not scary. It’s just new. They can handle it.

Treat Them Like They’re Real People. And by Real People, I mean separate from their adult female relatives, and a complete person in their own right. Contact them directly, without passing messages through others. Ask for them by name, and treat them as a peer. It is thoroughly gorgeous what being treated as a valued peer by adult women does for a girl.

Teach Watch-Care At Home and Away. This starts when they’re little–teaching them to notice the needs of others, and consider how they might personally fill a need. Noticing and thanking them for the little acts of service they do is important, too. Maybe the wash cloths didn’t need to be re-folded, maybe you already have five dandelions-taped-to-paper, but they saw what they perceived as a need, and filled it with gladness, and did it to serve, so recognize it and accept it as love!

As they grow, this paying-attention-and-acting-in-love morphs into a kind of personal visiting pastoral care. Even without formal “route assignments”, young women can observe the needs of others and seek inspiration to fulfill them. Do what you can do make it possible for an observant girl to take a treat or card to a recovering friend, or to pop across the street to help a neighbor with something. Allowing them the freedom to act on their inspirations teaches them to hear God, and act on what He’s telling them. Their service will be different from yours. That’s cool. Rearrange what you can to make it possible. This stuff is important.

Trust God. The building of a Church Lady is not something we can control. It’s God’s process, and we need to relax and trust it! Don’t over-analyze another’s experience. Don’t ask a girl “HOW WAS IT? HUH? DID YOU LOVE IT??!!?” Give them space and time to process, and just let it be, trusting that their Father will use each situation to teach them what HE wants them to know. It is not within our power to control their experience. We can only set up favorable conditions, and step back and let them live it.

So, that’s how I was built to be a Church Lady. It’s working with my girls, and I’m so grateful. Give it a shot.

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So, commercials on the internet are good for one thing: they remind me of Manufactured Major Holidays. And this current one is, of course, Mother’s Day.

(It’s also our wedding anniversary, which we planned to coincide because both myself and my Tall, Dark, and Slightly Neanderthal Fellow are woefully, miserably BAD at remembering significant days, and we thought we MIGHT have a shot at remembering the day we got married if the whole industrialized world were sending us reminders. This has worked. A few years, anyhow.)

Here’s what I want to say about Mothers and Motherhood:

Motherhood has absolutely nothing to do with a uterus, or the uses of a uterus.

The endowment of motherhood, the creation of a mother, happened ages ago, before the beginning of time, when our Creator formed our souls from the very starlight of the universe.

If we’re going to celebrate the eternal nature of a role of a mother’s heart, let’s celebrate it in full: let’s celebrate the stewardship of “mothering” that is our right and privilege.

Mothering happens in a myriad of ways, undertaken by women who are married, widowed, single; women who have and who have not borne children in their bodies. Motherhood is a stewardship given to every woman ever created, at the time of her soul’s birth.

I know women who work within that eternal role by being adoptive and step and foster parents, willing to take a child into their hearts forever, no matter how long they have together. Other women express their mothering heart by mentoring others (young and old) in any and every way.

Some mother through hospice and care homes, extending grace, humor, compassion, and humanity to those in the winding up days of their time here. They take under their wings those whose mothers have already gone on, in the moments when a human soul needs a mother the most.

Some mother as “church moms” or “church ladies”, making life gentle behind the scenes, and loving the whole community. Others mother the “unlovable” in shelters and slums, and the worst of conditions, and never flinch from the pain their mothering brings.

Some mother as midwives, as teachers, as soldiers–all standing to protect the vulnerable in whatever ways are needed.

Some women mother as legal advocates for children in the court systems who have no one looking out for their needs. Some mother by collecting needful goods to put into “rescue” bags for children entering that system, or trying to live on the streets.

Some women mother by fundraising for orphans and traumatized people; others work the phones to provide the loving, compassionate ear and a voice on the other end of the line, telling another soul that they matter, that the universe is better because they exist, and to not give up.

Some mother by helping with rescue animals and sustainable agriculture, extending their stewardship into everything around us, for the generations now present, and the generations to come.

A mothering heart loves the broken, rejoices with the unburdened, cries with the mournful, and binds up the weary hearts of others. A mothering heart is a gorgeous, gorgeous thing.

If a woman does anything to spread love, compassion, safety, warmth, kindness, goodness, health, longevity, comfort, justice, mercy, or betterment in the world, she is doing that under her mantle of Motherhood, given to her by God at the moment of her creation, inseparable from our Divine Mother–all our expressions of it would be familiar to Her, as they are to our Divine Father.

God bless all mothering hearts–for we are all made in the image of God’s love.

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My baby brother and my baby sister-in-law recently added a lovely little person to their household, and as I am wont to do, that throws me into a frenzy of making Nifty Things for the Noob. This particular Noob comes with some exciting accessories that no one was anticipating, so there was the added frenzy of making Nifty Things That Are More Boyly, Because Noob Has Outdoor Plumbing, and We All Expected Otherwise.

(I’m going to go ahead and finish the pretty white girl gown for his Eventual Sister… and we’ll be making a bitty man-kilt for Sir Noob in a few weeks, instead.)

I’m content to let others concentrate on the cute little clothes and things; I was very excited to get to help out with some of the nitty-gritty basics that make for one-time investments with long-term use. And that means: diapers. Diapers and burp cloths. And diaper covers. And some other stuff, because once I get going I can’t stop!

DIY Diaper Covers!

Nifty Things for Noobs!

I found a great deal on unbleached pre-folds, and ordered 24 in the small infant size, then washed and dried them to fluffy perfection. Those went in a boring box, because they’re pretty utilitarian and boring, but useful. The advantage of pre-folds is that they wash and dry pretty easily and quickly, and last a long, long time, and can be used as doublers when Sir Noob outgrows them for daily diapering. Unbleached pre-folds start out a creamy natural light brown, so they actually do a nice job at hiding the long-term evidence of their use, too!

In the fun box, we tucked:

  • 24 burp flannels, made like this.

    Burp flannels in Owls and Chemistry.

    Burp flannels in Owls and Chemistry.

  • 5 tiny-newborn-with-umbilical-scoop-section diaper covers, with white PUL inside and fun fabric outside. These are made smaller than normal, and have limited usefulness, but Sir Noob is a tiny thing, and “newborn” is a bit big on him just yet! Our Lefty was in preemie clothes for six weeks for the same reason, and I remember how hard it was to diaper her in “newborn” things. So, to adapt the pattern I used, I folded out the section that would be snapped together for initial use, to make them a bit shorter in the rise, and used shorter elastic stretched more (4″ in the legs, and a 5″ stretch across the back), to snug up the legs. This blog has about nine-billion free printable patterns for different styles of cloth diapers and cloth diaper covers. I marked the umbilical scoop covers with a little green dot center front.Owls and Foxes
  • 6 regular newborn diaper covers, made with the pattern out at normal length, and slightly larger elastics (4.5″ in the legs, 5.5″ across the back). All the diaper covers fasten with sewn-on hook-and-loop. I decided on the elastic lengths using Annie Tuttle’s suggestions, and used a simple method of sewing the body of the cover right sides together, and using a long narrow zig-zag to attach the elastic to the seam allowances. When the diaper cover is turned right sides out, I can go from topstitching next to the edge to curving in a bit and creating the final casing for the elastics, all in one step. I also turned all the diaper covers through the short end of one of the front side tabs. The PUL in the diaper covers is shiny-side-up, so the covers can be wiped clean easily, and won’t need full laundering after every use.

    I call this "Covers, With Kitten In Background"

    I call this “Covers, With Kitten In Background”

  • 4 sets of old-fashioned diaper pins. If you store the points in a bar of Ivory soap, they go through the cloth of the diaper insert smoothly.
  • 2 size 0-3m onesies in neutral colors.
  • 1 newborn snap-shirt that Lefty wore as an infant, which she found and was determined to wash up and send to her new cousin. So we did.
  • A copy of the Garth Williams illustrated “Baby Farm Animals” Golden Book, because it has lovely pictures. I think every child should get to see those pictures.

Previously, we made a baby blanket with the owl fabric in the diaper covers, backed with a pretty pale greys/taupes spotted flannel. I make those kinds of blankets with the same process as the burp flannels, and machine quilt the layers together. They’re cozy… my baby sis-in-law reports that it’s already one of her favorites for swaddling.

I’m pretty much in love with making the diaper covers. The PUL was easy to work with, and the option of combining it with a range of personalized cloth for the outer layer was a lot of fun. One thing I did notice: with the very directional prints, my own sensibilities required that I flip one half of the fabric “upside down” so when the diaper cover is worn, the words are right side up on both the front and back. The join is at the base of the crutch, so it’s not very visible. The PUL is cut in one complete piece to avoid any leak points.

Boffo! Kapow! Biff! Zoom!

Boffo! Kapow! Biff! Zoom!

As Sir Noob gets bigger, I’ll be able to make new sets of covers for him. We’re planning some pretty nerdly coolness for summer use, when his fluffy bum will be on display more often.

Sir Noob is very likely to be a ninja.

Sir Noob is very likely to be a ninja.

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How To Take a Nap

Please allow me to share some little-known truths that make a big impact on my daily life, and the satisfaction thereof.

Prime Napping Locations

Choosing the right location can make the difference between “napping” and other sleep-like activities. Some spots to consider:

The Bed: but only if you’ve made your bed. It doesn’t count as a nap if you’re under the normal covers. Naps happen on top of the spread, but potentially under a nice throw. You can also justify pulling up one corner of the spread to drape over feet or shoulders.

The Couch: and this works best if the living room has been tidied recently. You will nap better in a vacuumed room. It’s a scientific fact. Consider a snooze propped up in the left-hand corner of the couch, with a small pillow under you head. Again, a throw or small quilt is very handy. Couch naps are preferred if you will be expected to be seen in public later, as the hair-squashing factor is significantly mitigated by the noggin-pillow-prop.

A Chair: this must be a nice broad chair, of course, with a high back/arms, to allow curling up. Not for the damaged-of-knee, really, but likely to happen if you are reading on an overcast day.

A Hammock: napping in a suspended net might also happen if you are the victim of an unfortunate tracking accident, but in general, napping in a hammock is officially a siesta, so you can cross-count it for cultural exploration.

The Ground: Ew. Because of the potential for insect incursions, and the general propensity of The Nature to exact revenge upon normally-house-napping people, avoid laying on the ground to nap. Ants in your ears. Enough Said.

Proper Attire

If you get up, do stuff, then lay back down and go to sleep, and are still in your PJs, then you’ve Gone Back to Bed.

However, if you get up, put on a bra, do stuff, and then lay back down and go to sleep, you are taking an Official and Thoroughly Respectable Nap. Sports bras count.

PJs = Lazy Patoot Who Went Back To Bed.

Bra (even if worn under a borrowed husband T-shirt and paired with yoga pants that have never seen yoga moves) = Well-Deserved and Officially-Sanctioned Nap.

Level Up

Napping bonus points are awarded if you are bear-hugging a reluctant toddler who really needs to sleep. Extreme bonus points apply if you wake from your Official Nap to find they are still sleeping, and manage to extract yourself from said toddler, without waking them. Be sure your victory dance is quite silent, but do throw in a few Fist Self-Bumps, because you are awesome.

Napping Master Level

My Beloved, and Lefty-Whilst-A-Toddler: Nap Masters.

Nap on, Brethren and Sistren.

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Pioneers!

So, in my faith, we add a few fun holidays to the traditional year. The best of these, in my opinion, is Pioneer Day, 24 July, celebrating the arrival of LDS emigrants to the Salt Lake Valley. The great migration was the culmination of several years of increasingly brutal religious persecution, including mobs with tar and feathers, and multiple murders of men, women, and even children. Not a terribly great lead-up to migration.

So we turned it into a party. We’re kind of great at that sort of thing.

As a child, my favorite day of the summer was Pioneer Day. I hauled out my Gunne Sax dress (hand-me-down from my best friend’s older sisters), put on every full skirt I owned as petticoats, grabbed a shawl, and stomped around feeling pioneerish and lovely for the picnic, pies, home-grown little kid parade, games, and visiting that took place that afternoon and evening, at a park by the river near my best friend’s ranch.

Oh, the braids in hair! (Daddy did those… Mom doesn’t braid. She does garden, so she’s very cool.) Oh, the swishing skirts! Oh, the wandering around glancing shyly at cute boys duded up in their best Western wear! Oh, the semi-scandalous sharing-of-homemade-rootbeer-with-cute-boys-having-Not-Wiped-The-Rim-First! (Semi-scandal, I tell you! Sooo much semi-scandal!)

These days, our current area is a little short on the fun traditions I loved best, which is sad. Perhaps I’ll get really motivated this coming winter, and volunteer to do up some committees and reintroduce actual historical fun to the mix? (I’ve been saying that since the first inflated-bouncy-house and puny-production-burger event, about ten years ago…)

If you’re looking for some fun elements to add to a Pioneer Day celebration, here’s my list of the very important bits you need:

Pioneer Clothing

Multiple free patterns and projects for pioneer-era styles on my “in real life” website dedicated to LDS clothing and history: Clothing The Saints

Another great blog with scads of projects and tutorials, from my friend Emily: Buns & Baskets Blog

Pioneer Music

Lisa Arrington has some great stuff; here she is with Fiddlesticks, from the Farewell to Nauvoo album:

Steven Sharp Nelson’s “If You Could Hie to Kolob”, in fine orchestral form, because you need a soundtrack for Pioneer Day baking!

Of course, the Mormon classic, “Come, Come Ye Saints”:

And don’t forget dancing! Lots and lots of dancing!

Pioneer Food

Emigrant accounts talk of living on beans and bacon, and for a change now and then, bacon and beans. But honestly, you can’t beat a fantastic bean soup, some cornbread, and pie! Lots of pie! With crust made from lard! (I’m serious. It’s splendid. And historic.) These recipes are from Mrs Hale’s New Cook Book, 1857. I’ve updated only the language of the directions.

To Stew Red Beans (page 279): Soak one pint of dried beans (all red, or mixed if you prefer) in two quarts of water overnight. Drain, and put the beans in a large saucepot with two quarts of fresh water. Bring to a boil over medium heat, cover, and simmer until they are quite tender. Use a spoon to mash or break some of the beans, to thicken the broth. Add two tablespoons of butter for richness, then season with pepper, salt, parsley, and a bit of thyme, to taste. Add one small to medium onion, diced fine. Let them simmer over low for another hour or two, to deepen the flavors.

As-is, this is a fine vegetarian meal (vegan if you leave out the butter). If you like a bit more richness, chop a bit of ham to add in the last few hours of simmering.

Indian Bread is mentioned multiple times in the book, without a specific recipe, but my great-grandmother’s recipe includes all the elements Mrs Hale mentions: start the oven heating to 450*; in a bowl, whisk together two cups sour milk or buttermilk, one tablespoon bacon drippings or oil, one teaspoon baking soda, a scant tablespoon of salt, one cup all-purpose flour, one-and-a-half cups yellow cornmeal, one tablespoon of sugar, and one egg. Turn into a well-greased 8×8 or 9×9 or 10×6″ pan, and bake until golden brown.

Apple Pie (American) (page 325): line a pie plate with pastry crust. Layer in peeled, cored, and sliced green apples, such as Granny Smith, strewing with sugar (to taste–1/2 cup will do it if you like some bite to contrast with, say, whipped cream), the zest and juice of one lemon, and a teaspoon or so of ground cinnamon. Cover with a pastry crust, cut some vents, and toss it in the oven at 350* for about 40 minutes, until the crust is lovely and browned, and the juices are bloopy. Let it cool before cutting.

Or, what about a Custard Pie (page 326): Bring one quart of milk to a boil, with a stick of cinnamon and the zest of one lemon. Stir to prevent it scorching. Let it cool to blood-warm, and remove the cinnamon stick. Beat seven large eggs into the cooled, spiced milk. Add about 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg. Line two deep pie plates with pastry crust, and “blind bake” it in the oven 3-5 minutes at 375*, to set the crust a bit. Pour in the egg/milk mixture, dividing it evenly. Bake about 20 minutes, and cool completely before attempting to cut it.

Look for Part the Second, with activities and links to stories you can use to enhance your own Pioneer Day celebration!

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When one has a giveaway, it is generally considered good for to Actually Draw A Winner, and then Announce That Winner!

I have, instead, been working on an “In Real Life” project that’s over a year in the making, and sort of… forgot. So, better late than never!

Randomly selected from the tens of people who read my blog every week, and commented on the giveaway post….
Alisha B— check your email. 🙂 I’ll look forward to hearing your thoughts on the music, if you get a chance!

(Very huge thanks to YourLDSRadio.com for the opportunity to share some new music with lovely people!!)

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