Wednesday, September 17, 2008


The packers are coming today and tomorrow, so we're in for a couple of utterly crazy days. Quite honestly it's an irritating process to direct traffic and to feel that you're underfoot in your own home, but it's preferable to doing the whole thing ourselves!

Ironically enough, my Cottey best friend hadn't been here at all, living several states away herself, until last night. She's staying with another of our friends not far away so they came over yesterday. And instead of actually seeing where we live, she got to see us in a state of ready-to-move. Since she's had almost as many addresses as birthdays she knows about moving probably better than most military families. It certainly didn't faze her.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The piano is here!

It's big, heavy, beautiful- it looks like a real piano. We finally got it in the middle of the afternoon today. It took My Knight several hours to assemble it, although it should not be disassembled again. Ever. Alas, as busy as we are getting ready to move, we didn't get to use it but for a few minutes after supper.

What wonderful things we can do. The metronome can sit on the top of the piano, we can put the boxes and baskets of music to the side, and we will be able to go back to having our family hymns and devotions once we've moved. I hope this one will last us many years!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

A thought...

Imagine if Will Rogers and Mark Twain could have traded commentary and quips.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Junior Cookbook Thursday- Peanut-Cocoa Shakes

This was from the "Anytime Treats" chapter of the 1978 book. It's a variation under the chocolate shakes recipe, in which you add 2T of peanut butter along with chocolate syrup to milk and vanilla ice cream. The product was still pretty thin; I'm always shocked at how much ice cream and how little milk go into milkshakes! (Actually, I probably don't want to think about it, especially when ordering a milkshake at Nifty Fifties....) Bluebonnet was interested in trying to help with every step, but the only thing I could really give her to do was to pour the milk from the measuring cup into the blender. She did also tell me that the blender was loud.
Bluebonnet and My Knight both really liked these. I found it a bit too sweet but generally liked it; I do love chocolate and peanut butter together.

This is the last Junior Cookbook Thursday post until we've moved. I'll have other posts between now and then but not JCT.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

"Where were you?"

That's the question everyone will ask this day for decades.

Cottey College. It was just as bright in Missouri as it was there in New York. All day, girls who hadn't been in a class were checking on the television and reporting to girls in their classes on what had happened or was speculated.

My best friend had an earlier class than I did, so she didn't know anything by the time we met up outside Hinkhouse Center (the gym and dance building) between classes. The only class (of four) that I had in which we conducted class at all was a ballet class. Every other class just sat and talked about what had happened.

After lunch (and for some reason I remember there were brown-sugar sandwich cookies for dessert) I realized that the flag needed to be lowered to half-mast. You have to know Cottey to understand what I'm about to say, but I took myself upstairs to the college president (Dr. Washburn) to ask about it, intending to do it myself, but Dr. Washburn got one of the maintenance men to take care of it.

After supper everyone was still phoning relatives, trying to get a chance to give blood, checking on friends and family who could have been affected in some way. (My aunt had to walk home, I think; My Knight was at Hofstra University in Long Island and could see the fires from campus.)
We prayed around the flagpole; I went to the organ and I think what I played was "Eternal Father, Strong to Save". Later, Dr. Washburn walked through all the suites to check on her girls.

Now, someday when Bluebonnet is bigger, we'll have to explain what happened; it's going to be a lot tougher than when our parents explained about Kennedy being shot or the Challenger exploding.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

A Quote Concerning Hospitality

"The potatoes are boiling, the kettle's singing, and I daresay, Mr. Beaver, you'll get us some fish."

You may recognize that from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Perhaps because of the way it was read on a recording I used to borrow from the library, that sentence has always stuck with me and come to mind whenever hospitality is at hand, especially the more spur-of-the-moment hospitality. Remember the Beavers and have company!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Words and attitudes that need to go

There are several words that are constantly misused, overused, or otherwise trotted out inappropriately. Some of the most irritating include "deserve" and "normal". "Deserve"- well, no, I don't deserve new clothes every month of the year, having my nails done, or any of the other nonsense that most magazines will have you believe we do. But that's another story.

"Normal" is one that really gets under my skin. I have seen this one thrown around by scores of critics of people who don't quite conform. Robyn ( has taken huge amounts of such criticism; admittedly her family does things in a very non-conforming way, but there's no excuse for the vitriol that comes toward her way of life. She and many other conservative Christians have to listen to endless commentary that generally boils down to their children not having a normal life because they have a large number of siblings, live off-grid, home school, are expected to do a number of chores around home, wear modest clothes, etc. (The Duggars get this too, but as sickening as such criticism is, they've put themselves more in the public eye than an average blogger's family.)

But no one ever defines "normal". Do they mean conformist? Because surely every one of those families that are "normal" by that definition must come out exactly as rosily as they hoped, right? What exactly is "being a kid" that young people who have several younger siblings miss out on?

And while we're on the subject, I'd also like to impose a ban on using terms you can't quite define. I've encountered numerous misuses of "Quiver-full" and inaccurate comparisons of conservative Christians to the Amish. If you don't know what you're talking about, don't say it.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Junior Cookbook Thursday- No-Knead Yeast Rolls

This wa from the Breads section of the 1978 edition. We made them in the morning, so that they would be available for lunchtime. They were similar to many other bread recipes, although if made into a loaf would only make one (one packet of yeast). We heated the butter and milk together before mixing them in with flour and yeast and sugar and salt. Bluebonnet poured the milk in to the saucepan initally.

There was a long rising time, an hour for the first time and a half-hour for the second, but they only bake for 15 minutes. The recipe tells you to use muffin tins for rolls. We did that, and found that the 400-degree oven made a very crisp outside to the rolls. I expect the dough could be shaped a number of ways for other interesting rolls or loaves. And everyone seemed to like them, eaten with peanut butter, for lunch.