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All proceeds (minus shipping and packing) will benefit www.firstbook.org, a non-profit that provides new books to children from low-income families throughout the U.S. and Canada.
Taphophilia Origin: Ancient Greek τάφος (taphos, “funeral rites”, “burial”, “funeral”, “wake”; “tomb”, “grave”) + English -philia (from the Ancient Greek φιλία (philia), philia, “love”, “fondness”)
If wandering through cemeteries, imagining the lives of those who lay beneath the poems and quotes, and taking pictures of the tombstones is something that someone you know enjoys, s/he just might have a mild case of taphophilia. Also called a “tombstone tourist,” or a “cemeterian,” or even a “cemetery hunter,” the people afflicted with this don’t seem to suffer from it. Quite the contrary, they find walking through a cemetery to be the most peaceful of hobbies. What’s not to love? Trees, peace, quiet, maybe even a rest beneath a tree. Or perhaps the contemplation of life itself while leaning up against a … beautifully carved rock.
Welcome New Sisters! (click for current roster)
Merit Badge Awardees (click for latest awards)
My featured Merit Badge Awardee of the Week is Martha Koukios!
Martha Koukios (Martha K, #508) has received a certificate of achievement in Stitching & Crafting for earning a Beginner Level Sew Wonderful Merit Badge!
“I put together a sewing kit in a canning jar, and made a pinkeeper out of the top. I included straight pins and needles, scissors, assorted buttons and thread colors, safety pins, measuring tape, and a thimble.
It came out very nice. I am partial to bees, so I made the pinkeeper out of a beehive fabric.”
Throughout the years of history, fashion and style have had some odd and peculiar moments. The things we do for beauty aren’t just inconvenient, weird, and trendy, they are sometimes downright dangerous.
Death by style?
It’s happened …
So while skinny jeans, underwire bras, and high heels may be uncomfortable, count your blessings. Beauty may be pain, but we’ll stick to our flannel shirts and broken-in jeans, thank you.
The adorable, always humorous MBA Jane is my way of honoring our Sisterhood Merit Badge program, now with 7,466 dues-paying members who have earned an amazing number of merit badges so far—10,836 total! Take it away, MBA Jane!!! ~MaryJane
Wondering who I am? I’m Merit Badge Awardee Jane (MBA Jane for short). In my former life …
For this week’s Farm Kitchen/All Dried Up Young Cultivator Expert Level Merit Badge, Nora and I went on a mad, crazed, no-holds-barred shopping trip for herbs.
I know, you can’t stop us nutty herbivores. We’re obsessed with fresh plants!
There were a few still growing in my garden, so of course we took advantage of those as well, but we wanted to expand our culinary palates too, and that required a bit of supermarket and farm stand browsing. After an afternoon of odoriferous gathering, we had a basket of fresh greenery that would make Rapunzel swoon with envy.
Next up, after washing our delicate pretties, we hung some of the herbs up to dry, and thought about what to do with the rest. We came up a couple ideas: compound butters to give as gifts, and frozen oils to keep for cooking.
For the frozen herbs, it’s simple. Use ice cube trays and separate your herbs into the cubes. Drizzle with olive oil and freeze. When you need an herb for say, spaghetti sauce or soup, just pop out the one of your choice!
For the compound butters, we mixed our herbs with softened butter. Roll into a log using wax paper and refrigerate. Tie with a pretty ribbon and these make great gifts for a housewarming present (add a loaf of French bread). They are also yummy melted on top of a steak or broiled on a piece of fish or chicken.
Just the thought made our mouths water, so we made ourselves some fresh iced tea with mint leaves and invented our own recipe using Nora’s personal favorite herb of choice: dill.
Nora’s Dill Pickle Dip
Mix thoroughly and refrigerate to thicken slightly. Serve with crackers and iced tea with mint.
Try it with your dill-pickle fans. It’s dill-icious!
Once our herbs had finished drying (you can speed up the process by using a food dehydrator or your oven, but we enjoyed the look of the pantry once we had hung all of our bunches upside down using clothesline), we pinched off the leaves and packaged them in jars. Voila! Fresh herbs for all our friends to last even when the garden has been plundered.