Wednesday, 13 November 2013
We receive a weekly delivery of organic produce at our house. Our delivery includes whatever fruits and vegetables are fresh from the farm that week. Our children look forward to seeing what is in the box and trying new things. This week we received A LOT of persimmons. I’ve heard of persimmons but being a girl from New England, I didn’t know how to eat them or what to do with them. Luckily, my California-raised husband shared that his mother made wonderful persimmon cookies when he was young. One email later and I had the recipe.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
My mother in law’s recipe suggests you may add raisins and/or nuts. I got creative here and made three different batches adding chocolate chips, butterscotch chips and macadamia nuts individually.
Drop by heaping teaspoon on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake for 15-18 minutes.
These cookies were beautiful and cake-like. My kids loved them. It was fun to sneak something healthy into such a yummy cookie.
Making these with one of my daughters, sharing some of my husband’s family history, created an even more memorable experience than simply baking together. Surprising her Dad with one of the treats from his childhood was an extra perk for Eva.
Thank you, Jane!
What recipes has your mother-in-law shared to meld your husband’s childhood memories with your own so they become important to the next generation?
Thursday, 31 October 2013
You can take the girl out of Boston but you can’t take Boston out of the girl. We had the perfect autumn evening last night…homemade soup for dinner, carving pumpkins and the RED SOX WIN THE WORLD SERIES!!!
Wednesday, 23 October 2013
You may want to sit down before you read any further. Whenever I tell people what I am about to tell you, jaws drop wide open. I NEVER went trick or treating as a child. EVER.
Yes, it is true. My parents didn’t feel it was safe. It was back in the day of horrible stories of razor blades hidden in candy apples and poisoned candy. Hospitals volunteered to x-ray your candy for free to keep children safe. Were there any truths to these stories or were they just urban legends? If I was a parent with young children thirty years ago, I may have made the same decision as my parents.
I want to tell you that I never felt deprived or even thought I was missing out on trick or treating. My parents put a lot of effort into making it a very special holiday for us. We always had spectacular costumes, sometimes homemade and sometimes store-bought. Our Halloween parties were the talk of the neighborhood. They were so much fun with homemade treats and spooky games including a haunted house. During the month of October, our family would watch Halloween specials on TV like, Charlie Brown and the gang in It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and The Legend of Sleepy Hallow narrated by Bing Crosby. On Halloween night, we would always dress up in our costumes and hand out candy to our neighbors and friends as they trick or treated. I loved seeing all the different and creative costumes at our front door.
I went trick or treating for the first time when I was 28 years old. My husband and I took my stepdaughter. I was very excited. We live in a very quiet and safe neighborhood. It was a lot of fun to see all the children running down the streets with their overflowing bags of candy. Today, our children go trick or treating and they love it.
After experiencing the trick or treating for several years now, I have to say that I am ready to stay home again and hand out the candy.
Whatever your Halloween traditions are, be true to your beliefs. There are many ways to enjoy the holiday and have fun.
What are your Halloween traditions?
Friday, 6 September 2013
This Sunday, September 8, is National Grandparents Day. The day originated with Marian McQuade in West Virginia. She was looking for a way to help the lonely elderly in nursing homes. In 1978, President Jimmy Carter proclaimed that National Grandparents Day would be celebrated every year on the first Sunday after Labor Day.
According to Wikipedia, the number of grandparents in the United States will rise from 65 million in 2011 to 80 million in 2020. Grandparents are also helping out in the area of child care and support. In 2012, 30% of children under five with working parents were cared for on a regular basis by a grandparent.
Our children our blessed to have three living grandparents and two living great-grandparents. Unfortunately, none of them live close to us. We have been lucky to see them many times throughout the years and our children feel a strong bond with them and an overwhelming love for them. We also “adopted” our 90-year-old neighbor. She has many grandchildren but none of them live in the area. Recently, she taught our children how to play checkers with true strategy because they were going to visit their great-grandfather and wanted to play with him.
If you are part of the 30% that is lucky enough to have the grandparents help out with childcare, I am envious of you. There are so many different things that grandparents can share with our children that we cannot. They have a different perspective and have more life experiences. Please help your children build and keep these important relationships. If you are unable to visit, there are many other ways to maintain these bonds. One of my daughter’s grandmothers read a book she was reading this summer so they could discuss it together over the telephone. Another daughter saves buttons that have fallen off because only grandma can sew them on just right. The artistic talents of our children are linked to a grandmother that sends the most creative thank you notes and has a love of art. One daughter inherited a sense of style from a great grandmother that has a pair of shoes and accessories to match every outfit.
Please call, face time, visit or write the grandparents this weekend. Small children can draw or paint a picture. My grandfather told me a story a few years ago. He wanted me to know that he chose the cemetery where he would be buried. He said there were many cemeteries in his town but he chose the one where all the famous people were buried so maybe someone would visit him. My grandfather had a very bad fall a few months ago that left him with memory loss and he is unable to care for himself. It has been difficult for my entire family. Before the fall, he was so sharp and active. He would read, travel, work, play golf and volunteer. He is now in a care facility. All he wants to do is go home. I will not be able to see him this Sunday but I hope someone “adopts” him and gives him the gift of a visit.
Please like this on Facebook if you will be calling or seeing your grandparents on Sunday or even adopting one.