Monthly Archives: March 2024

You Can Go Home

A most lovely children’s book showed up in my mailbox recently. It made me think of my good friend Winnie, who has found her passion in knowing apples and sharing apples.

“Over the years, you have brought much joy through your magazine. Enclosed is a gift of gratitude. And yes, I can go home again through your magazine.” – Michele

Michele Benoit Slawson based her children’s book on her experience picking apples in the Yakima Valley of Washington, where she grew up. She remembers it being both a tradition and a necessity for the community to help bring in the autumn harvest. Michele now lives in the Midwest with her husband and three children.

Play Dough

I love playing with my wild bread dough before I bake it. Anyone else doeth playeth with their dough?


Do you have your bonnet ready for tomorrow? I have a sweet little fascinator I’m going to wear.

for early a.m. services in our neighborhood church.


From one of my favorite books, West with the Night by Beryl Markham, page xii (Introduction by Sara Wheeler), I learned a new word that I’ve since found many opportunities to use. “She was born in Central England in 1902 and moved as a toddler to British East Africa, now Kenya, with her father, Charles Clutterbuck, a failed army officer and racehorse trainer. (Beryl’s mother had scarpered with a colonel, taking Beryl’s brother with her.) Clutt, as her father was known, bought 1,500 acres at Njoro, between the Mau Forest and the Rongai valley, and there he milled flour and timber: by 1907 he had more than a thousand Kavirondo and Kikuyu on payroll. The girl Beryl was left to run wild with Kipsigi boys, wearing a cowrie shell on a leather thong around her wrist to ward off evil sprits. She ate with her hands, her first language was Swahili, and she could hurl a spear as well as her playmates.”

Scarper, skahr-per

verb (used without object), British

  1. to flee or depart suddenly, especially without having paid one’s bills.

    Today’s Recipe: Raspberry-Lemon Muffins

    Just in time for Easter Sunday, a simple muffin recipe.




    1 1/2 cups Organic Budget Mix® All-Purpose Original
    I’m happy to report that this recipe is delicious with MaryJane’s Gluten-free Budget Mix! The conversion is simple, just swap the 1 1/2 cups Budget Mix with 1 cup Budget Mix® All-Purpose Gluten Free. After spooning the batter into muffin cups, let them hang out for about 15 minutes before baking (this gives the flour time to absorb liquid). The yield and bake times are still the same.
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/4 cup brown sugar
    1 cup buttermilk
    2 eggs
    6 T melted butter
    1 t vanilla extract
    1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries (about 4 ozs)
    1 T lemon zest (about 1 lemon)

    Simple icing (optional):
    1/2 cup powdered sugar
    2 1/2 t milk

    1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line muffin tin with baking papers and set aside.
    2. In a medium bowl, combine Budget Mix, sugar, and brown sugar; mix well.
    3. In a small bowl, combine buttermilk, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla. Mix well and pour into dry mixture. Mix just until combined. Mix in raspberries and lemon zest.
    4. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Bake for 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool slightly, then transfer muffins to a cooling rack to cool completely.
    5. Make optional icing: Combine powdered sugar and milk in a small bowl and mix until smooth. Drizzle over muffins and let dry completely.

    Continue reading

    A Gentleman in Moscow

    Giveaway! There’s an acknowledgment due for this book giveaway. Is there a gentleman in your life worthy of a book? Tell me who!

    My gentleman would be Joseph Barron, who I milled flour with for three years. From my Wild Bread book, here’s who he was in my life, and ALWAYS the gentleman.

    A Gentleman in Moscow

    A Gentleman in Moscow is a bestselling book, recently turned original series from Paramount, and for good reason … it’s joyful. And oh, so beautifully written. After reading Amor Towles’s Gentleman, I immediately read two more of his books: The Lincoln Highway and Rules of Civility. Please, please, please, Amor, don’t stop writing books!

    Gentleman, practically speaking, is about mastering practicalities and finding joy in your daily-ness, your routines, while keeping your head in the clouds. Lovely.

    “Having acknowledged that a man must master his circumstances or otherwise be mastered by them, the Count thought it worth considering how one was most likely to achieve this aim when one had been sentenced to a life of confinement.

    For Edmond Dantes in the Chateau d’If, it was thoughts of revenge that kept him clear-minded. Unjustly imprisoned, he sustained himself by plotting the systemic undoing of his personal agents of villainy. For Cervantes, enslaved by pirates in Algiers, it was the promise of pages as yet unwritten that spurred him on. While for Napolean on Elba, strolling among chickens, fending off flies, and sidestepping puddles of mud, it was visions of a triumphal return to Paris that galvanized his will to persevere. 

    But the Count hadn’t the temperament for revenge; he hadn’t the imagination for epics; and he certainly hadn’t the fanciful ego to dream of empires restored. No. His model for mastering his circumstance would be a different sort of captive altogether: an Anglican washed ashore. Like Robinson Crusoe stranded on the Isle of Despair, the Count would maintain his resolve by committing to the business of practicalities. Having dispensed with dreams of quick discovery, the world’s Crusoes seek shelter and a source of fresh water; they teach themselves to make fire from flint; they study their island’s topography, its climate, its flora and fauna, all the while keeping their eyes trained for sails on the horizon and footprints in the sand.”

    Hear Ye!

    Below are the Merit Badges that were approved today.

    Congratulations Sisters!!

    Nancy Joplin, #8352, Nancy Joplin

    Beginner Garden Gate / Horse Dreams

    Intermediate Garden Gate / Herbs

    Debbie Klann, #770, debbieklann

    Intermediate Make It Easy / Through the Looking Glass

    Beginner Make It Easy / Through the Looking Glass

    Expert Make It Easy / Through the Looking Glass

    Emily Nellinger, #8229, citychick03

    Intermediate Each Other / Farmgirl Gratitude

    Hear Ye!

    Below are the Merit Badges that were approved today and last Sunday.

    Congratulations Sisters!!

    Debbie Fischer, #1582, Blessed in Colorado

    Beginner Each Other / Languages/Culture

    Beginner Each Other / Families Forever

    Beginner Each Other / Lost Art of Letter Writing

    Intermediate Each Other / Lost Art of Letter Writing

    Beginner Stitching & Crafting / Buttoned Up

    Intermediate Stitching & Crafting / Buttoned Up

    Debbie Klann, #770, debbieklann

    Expert Farm Kitchen / Apples

    Beginner Each Other / Lost Art of Letter Writing

    Intermediate Each Other / Lost Art of Letter Writing

    Expert Each Other / Lost Art of Letter Writing

     Expert Farm Kitchen / Icing on the Cake

    Denise Thompson, #43, levisgrammy

                      Intermediate Stitching & Crafting / Embroidery

    Beginner Cleaning Up / Recycling

    Intermediate Cleaning Up / Recycling

    Expert Cleaning Up / Recycling

    Heather Neeper, #4701, nndairy

        Beginner Stitching & Crafting / Scrapbooking

    Intermediate Cleaning Up / Recycling

    Expert Make It Easy / Relaxation

    Expert Farm Kitchen / Get It Together

    Joyce Hein, #6071, GinghamGirl

    Beginner Cleaning Up / Living Zero Waste

    Intermediate Cleaning Up / Living Zero Waste

    Expert Cleaning Up / Living Zero Waste

    Karen Martell, #8422, Jokamartell

    Beginner Garden Gate / Herbs

    Krista Davis, #528, maryjanesniece

        Beginner Each Other / Families Forever

    Tina VanDaam, #8431, TinaTina

       Beginner Each Other / Calligraphy