July 24

Got an email from the youth leader from Panama.

I’m going to c/p it here. (protecting the names, of course)

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Hey all,

Greetings from Panama! Our trip has been great so far and we are all looking forward to finishing out our time well and seeing our famlies. Daily each of us are being challanged and depending on the Holy Spirit! We have got a lot of projects accomplished and also had the opportunity to love on the people that we are around.

Just to highlight each member:

M is seeing patience and helped with stitches
B is seeing patience and oraganizing the clinic
R has done a great job with tutoring and crafts
H has welded and painted
S is doing mechanical work (mostly on a massive trailer)
The boy is currentely digging and grading dirt(I want to know if he is doing this manually, or has he acquired some sort of heavy machinery~~regardless, I am quite sure he is in the absolute height of fun)
D is digging and a great assistant to us adults
B worked on trailer fabrication, electical and supervising projects

Thank you so much for all of your prayers and support! We could not be doing what we are doing without you! We will be arriving home on Saturday about 3am. I would say that the best part of our trip so far is our time sitting on the pourch at night taking in the view and sharing in each others lives!!!! And as it relates to serving <I believe we would all agree that going to the school and delicing and loving on those kids was AWSOME!!!! We love you and thank you for everything!

B
Youth Director

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Bad segue back to me….

I generally do about 12-14 loads of laundry a week. This just barely keeps me from being avalanched by Mt. Washmore.

Barely.

Since the boy left on Thursday, and Superman early Saturday (he will be gone till the end of the month) I have one 1 load of laundry. One. And we had to scrounge for that one.

This means that the females in this house only generate 1/12th-1/14th of the laundry.

I think we need to go shopping.

July 23

The boy finally called yesterday afternoon. I was so excited, if I could have, I would have done a jig.

A few weeks ago, the boy went to spend the day with my parents. He came home with 2 flags to retire. You should never fly a flag that is dirty, faded, or torn in any way.

He asked if I’d like to help. I had never seen a flag retired before, so I said sure.

The first thing you do is beg to use your mother’s best Gingher scissors, and cut the stripes out.

Then you cut out the field.

After your flag is all cut up, you must start your fire.

No flint and steel for this Boyscout…it is cheating fire starter all the way.

You burn the stripes first.

Then the field.

Always being respectful to the flag.

Bury the ashes when they have cooled.

You don’t have to be a Boyscout to retire a flag. You just need a pair of scissors, fire starter, and respect.

July 22

I think the best thing about doing TWD is the fact that I get to try new things. Things that I would never, ever do without prodding.

Today’s TWD is just that. Cherry Rhubarb Cobbler.

There are 2 basic things wrong with this.

1. I do not like cherries. Oh, I love cherry flavor. Cherry juice, cherry candy, cherry pie~~minus the actual cherries~~, cherry cough drops, but please don’t make me eat cherries.

2. I do not like rhubarb. Rhubarb is green. Green= good for you. I don’t do ‘good for you’ in dessert….blech….

However, I would. not. be. deterred. I’m kind of stubborn like that. (Don’t faint dad)

Thank you Amanda from Like Sprinkles on a Cupcake for getting me out of my comfort zone.

Then I found a third thing that was a huge problem. Fresh cherries.

My dad’s favorite pie is cherry pie. Whenever mom made dad a pie, she did the ‘open the can and dump’ thing. This recipe called for fresh cherries, and I uhhhhh had to uuuuuuuh pit them? How do you pit cherries?, but more importantly, how do you pit cherries without a pitter?

I put out an SOS to the TWD group. I had lots of advice,(hair pin, unbent paper clip, and even a chop stick) but it really wasn’t clicking. Then I got some pictures. It was the pictures that did the trick, ’cause this girl is a visual learner. It was a picture using a metal ice cream spoon~~like one you would have used 50 years ago at an ice cream parlor.

A turkey baster was the closest thing I could find, and it worked.

I finally got brave and  popped one of those fresh cherries in my mouth. Wonder of all wonders…cherries are good. I like fresh cherries. Canned cherries leave a lot to be desired, but the fresh ones. Wow! oh! wow!

I pitted almost 3 pounds of cherries, and afterwards, my fingers were the color of my cherry stained headboard. I know this because I checked.

I wondered who was the first woman that looked at her hands after pitting 3 pounds of cherries and said to her man “hey, this would be a great color for my pie safe your making me. I’ll go pit 5 more pounds of cherries so you can make the stain.”

She obviously didn’t have enough to do, because it took me well over an hour to pit the 3 pounds I pitted. No wonder ma opened the can and dumped.

I love the fact that the topping on this particular cobbler was made with whole wheat flour. This would have to be the very first time in my life that I have made a dessert with whole wheat flour. Dessert is not the first thing that comes to mind when I hear whole wheat.

I gave this lovely cobbler to my dad for his birthday present. Love you daddy.

I made him try it before he went home so that I could tell you what he thought, because there was absolutely no way I was going to try it. Fresh cherries or not, it still had that rhubarb in it, and this girl will just happily go on through life blissfully unaware of what rhubarb tastes like, thankyouverymuch.

Some things that he noted were, that the juice was good, but needed more sugar, and that the topping was good, but needed a bit more salt.

If you happen to love cherries and rhubarb, please go check out Amanda’s blog, as she has the recipe.

I am just going to have to be content with my Dove Dark.

July 21

When I was in college~~about 450 years ago~~the guy that I was “seeing” at the time took me to meet his family in Kansas for Thanksgiving.

While I was there, I had the most wonderous pie I had ever eaten. It was a pecan pie with chocolate in it.

I. was. in. heaven. and I have been searching for a pie like that ever since.

Yesterday I told you I had these pie crusts I needed to use.  So I was trolling through recipe sites to find a pie that would fit my requirements ~~read, anything that I had ingredients for…which consisted of eggs, flour, and chocolate.

I found one that might be like the pie I had in Kansas, and score! I had all the ingredients too.

I weighed out my chocolate. I mixed my milk and semi-sweet. I’m an equal opportunity chocolate eater.

Chopped my walnuts.

Both of these were dumped into the bottom of my new favorite pie crust.

I get my eggs from a friend at church. Aren’t these lovely? You need 2 large eggs, some flour, some sugar, salt and vanilla.

Whisk that all together and pour over your chocolate and nuts.

With the leftover dough, make dodo’s. These things are almost better than the pie.

Bake your lovely pie for about 40 minutes. If you can wait, let it cool. If you can’t, dig in.

Kentucky Chocolate-Pecan Pie

  • 1 9″ pie shell, unbaked (recipe below)
  • 1 c. semi-sweet chocolate morsels (if you don’t have enough semi-sweet, feel free to mix them like I did)
  • 1 c. chopped pecans (if you don’t have enough pecans, use walnuts)
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ c. brown sugar
  • ½ c. sugar
  • ½ c. butter, melted
  • ½ c. flour
  • pinch salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Spread chopped nuts and and chocolate over the bottom of the pie crust. In a small mixing bowl, whisk rest of ingredients and pour over nuts and chocolate. Bake at 325º for 35-40 minutes.

My new favorite pie dough.

Good For Almost Everything Pie Dough~~Dorie Greenspan

(9″ crust)

  • 1½ c. flour
  • 2 tbsp. sugar
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 c. butter~~this needs to be either frozen or very cold, chopped into tbsp. size pieces.(no margarine allowed)
  • 2½ tbsp. shortening~~again, very cold or frozen, chopped into 2 pieces
  • about 1/4 c. ice water

Put flour, sugar and salt into your food processor. Pulse to combine. Drop butter and shortening and pulse till fat is cut into flour. Don’t over do. Dribble a few tbsp. of water in and pulse. Don’t add to much water. Refrigerate for at least ½ an hour before rolling out.

This dough goes together so quickly and with so little effort, and the flavor is the best I have ever had. Before I start mixing any of this up, I cut off about 2 tbsp. of my buttered flavored crisco stick, and put it in the freezer. By the time I am ready for it, it is ice cold, and perfect for the recipe.

Sadly, this pie tastes nothing like the pie I had in Kansas. If anyone has a recipe for a pecan pie with chocolate in it, I’d love to try it out.

I have an extra pie crust.

July 20**updated**

STILL….no word from the boy. Maybe this morning I can beg some information from someone that has heard from someone who has heard from someone. I am quite sure he is fine, but still…

Yesterday, the girl and I watched some chic flicks, I painted my toes a lovely shade of dark pink, extrachip C. came over to check on us, the girl did some embroidery, and I made a pie~~which I will tell you all about tomorrow.

I had these 2 pie crusts that the boy made before he left. I was going to make Superman a blueberry pie for him to take to Columbus.

Sadly, the blueberries were all green and fuzzy when I got to them Friday evening, but I still had those pie crusts, so a pie was begging to be made.

This pie crust recipe is so very tender. It is my new favorite. Not only does it taste great, but you make it in the food processor, which is absolutely the best…especially for a lazy woman like me.

I have always folded my dough into quarters to get it into the pie pan just like I watched my mom do for years. This method has served me quite well, till my new favorite dough came along. Because the dough is so tender, it really doesn’t want to co-operate, even with my foolproof method.

How do you get your pie crusts into your pie plate? I need a rip proof method, because I can not give up this new favorite dough recipe. I refuse.

Oh…and any suggestions on what to do with this last pie crust? I want to use it before it gets all green and fuzzy.

**Update.   No one has heard from anyone in Panama.  This morning Pastor called the head of the mission there in Boquete and asked him how everyone was.   Allen said that they all are doing well.   It rained yesterday so they went to the closest town and went shopping.

July 18

I have heard nothing from the boy…not a little text saying “Here. Flight wz gr8. ❤ U. ” or a little email saying “Were here, mom, long flight, tired. Don’t worry.” or even a little 30 second phone call saying “We’re here safe, I love you”. Nope…not a blessed thing. sigh.

Aaaaanyway…..

It is Friday, internet, and I am nosy.

Tell me one thing you miss about being a child.

For me it is the closeness that my sister and I had. We were super close, now that we live so far apart, it isn’t easy.

Yep….I miss my sister, and my John Boy and Mary Ellen paper dolls.