Saturday, November 22, 2008

We've stopped holding our breath

Lawrence Epple is gone, too.

Who will cook the corn now?

Goodbye. We love you both so much.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

No way to say goodbye

First of all: If you live in or are thinking about living in a house more than forty years old, please have an electrician come and take a very thorough look at your wiring.

"Pediatrician loses wife, home in fire"

It sounds so, well, newspaperish, which it is, but...when that wife is among the best friends your parents have, and is one of your own closest friends, it sounds pretty cold. The article can't tell the world how Nancy Epple could leave a group aching with side-splitting laughter when she told a story about her own predicaments, or how they kept Santa Claus hats in their suitcases so they could send Christmas cards with pictures from exotic and frequently incongruous locations. The reporter doesn't know how many thousands of children have been through the practice, or how Lawrence makes room in a schedule already too tight to see kids at the last minute, or what a little family the practice's staff have become over the years. (I did their filing during college, so I know the office from the inside.)

What, oh, what, do you do now?

We love you, Nancy J.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Bad and Good at once, or Get Behind her, Satan!

One of my friends from Ft. Hood has MS, which is something that you tend to forget until she specifically mentions it. Her husband had been deployed for just under a year when she had a flare-up that made it such that she cannot drive for several months. I don't understand much about MS, so I don't know why that was the doctor's orders. I gather she's feeling fine now other than the annoyance of not driving. But, a mother of three small boys who's by herself cannot spend six months, or even the remainder of a deployment, without driving, and the Army recognizes this. Her husband was called home and was due to arrive yesterday. So, even in the face of sickness, we say welcome home, Lt. Moore! God is good!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Building relationships and keeping in touch

Apparently I had a good idea.

In a discussion in an email group about building relationships in fellowship in our churches, I suggested a way of starting. My idea was to start at the beginning of a church's directory and try to call everyone in turn. If the first family doesn't answer this time, leave a message and call the next (that is, if no one answers at the Alberts' house, call the Andersons, and so on).

The same thing could apply by sending little notes or postcards to everyone. You could also do this for keeping in touch with other friends or the people in a club.

At any rate, my suggestion was well-received.

Why is it that I can come up with ideas when someone else needs a solution to a problem, but I have few ideas for myself? I'm notorious for this! My mother has gotten all kinds of interesting solutions, from decoration ideas to programs for PEO, that way.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Home Economics Course

Elizabeth, whose blog A Merry Rose I've followed for a while, has begun a new one devoted to a thorough course in home economics for keepers-at-home. I highly recommend joining in, before it's progressed much farther and you find yourself missing out. We all need some chances to take stock and get re-organized, which is where she has begun thus far. I think even older girls who are not yet the keepers of their own homes may get something valuable from this course.

Junior Cookbook Thursday- Saucepan Spaghetti

When they called this "Saucepan Spaghetti" they weren't kidding! Everything was dumped in together. First we browned the meat, then added all the sauce ingredients, and then when the sauce was boiling we added the noodles. They seemed to cook more quickly than cooking in water, but that could be only my perception. Bluebonnet helped by stirring the sauce and by dumping in several of the spoonsful of spices. This made a hit with Daddy as well. We served it with salad and garlic bread (a favorite in our house, made according to my father-in-law's procedure.)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

out of the mouths of babes

My Knight cut his hair this afternoon, which prompted Bluebonnet to comment "Daddy hair missing".

Friday, November 7, 2008

Junior Cookbook- Curled Hotdogs

Or "ock-a-dogs" as Bluebonnet pronounces it! To do this, you had to slice partway through the frankfurters, slicing across, so that they curl when cooked in hot water. I'm not sure of the physics of this one! Unfortunately it was really one which Bluebonnet couldn't help with at all, but it was pretty clever. The cookbook suggests serving on hamburger rolls; we used fresh bread and ate them as something like open-faced sandwiches.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Now what?

I'm sure most of us are thinking the same thing. After tomorrow's Return Day in Delaware I'll post about how that comes out. It should be interesting.

Monday, November 3, 2008

A Charming Book!

Yesterday I read a little book called A Necklace of Raindrops, by Joan Aiken. It's not new, although the copy from the library wasn't very old either. It's a collection of original stories, each separate from each other. I'm hesitant to call them fairy tales because that's somewhat the feel, but not the typical medieval fairy tale setting; they're more latter-day without feeling too "modern". One story concerns a quilt carried off by a thief, and another has the characters in a girl's books coming to life to play at night.

I was blessed enough to learn a little bit about the craft of storytelling from a dear lady who went on to Heaven a few years ago (at age 90). Her name was Sally Gottschling, and everyone who knew her, would tell you that she was the storyteller. (Some of the best stories she told were ones which put herself at the punchline! Ever since she taught me the little that I know about how to tell stories, I've kept my radar out for stories that would be good to tell. I think one of the stories in this book, "The Three Travelers," is one that I'd like to learn for telling. My repetoire is limited right now, with only three that I can truly tell well and without practice- and two of those are for Christmastime!

A Necklace of Raindrops is a definite gem, which I'd have no reservations about any child reading.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Two days late for Junior Cookbook Thursday- PEter Rabbit Salad

We're back on track with our Junior Cookbook Thursdays, except for my posting!

Peter Rabbit Salads, from the 1958 edition, called for canned pears but since I was already making something else that used fresh pears, we used fresh pears. We put pear halves face down (round side up) on lettuce, and added slices of marshmallow for ears and tail, and cherry for a nose. Optionally you could add whole cloves for eyes.

They looked like mice with puffy tails.

Bluebonnet helped pretty well by arranging the pears on the lettuce and trying to stick the marshmallow slices on the pears. She wasn't too impressed when we ate the marshmallows.

(As a sidenote, she hadn't been with me when my family had visitors from Denmark a few weeks ago and we taught these Danes how to make s'mores. I don't know what Bluebonnet would have thought of those, but the Danes liked it. So did all the Americans who were there.)