This page is my e-newsletter, changing with the seasons (or whenever I get a chance to sit down and write.) Feel free to comment, make suggestions, or send jokes!
Q: Why did the chicken cross the
Well, the frost is on the pumpkin and Thanksgiving is long past. Hope you're making clove apples by now (a Laura Ingalls Wilder favorite), or at least an apple pie. (see recipe below)
One of the most rewarding days I had this fall was helping build a new playground at my daughters' school. We had about 300 volunteers on the best day you could imagine - bright blue sky, hardly any wind, sun shining like it forgot it was already October. The PTO had won an award from Kaboom (a playground construction company) and Computer Associates International to finance and build the new playspace -- all we needed was to supply about 150 volunteers, and about $15,000 (a small portion of the actual cost.) Notes were sent home, volunteers solicited, and everyone turned out.
There we were, shoveling a mountain of bark mulch as the playground pieces were uncrated and bolted together. Parents of kids in the school, employees of local businesses, computer folks. The mountain crept into the frame which had been hammered into place, creating a 13" thick spongy base. Then the upright poles were cemented into the holes and the playground began to take form. "You're doing great! We're way ahead of the team [building a playground] in Arizona!" proclaimed a Kaboom employee, after hollering into her cell phone.
We took a break for an incredible lunch: pizza, sandwiches, Thai food; topped off with Ben & Jerry's ice cream - all donated, of course. And then the playground was done, the bark mulch raked into place, the old pea gravel carted away. The children - all 525 of them - came streaming out of the school building. They sat in ordered rows in front of the playground, waiting for the dedication ceremonies, a palpable sense of awe emanating from them as they beheld what had grown there in one day.
It's amazing what we can do together.
Check out Grandma Julie's Apple Pie Recipe.
It's a great one. My husband apprenticed to his grandmother to learn her
tricks and then taught me, and one or the other of us makes it several
times a year. Don't overwork the dough, and make the crust as thin as
you can, rolling it onto the rolling pin as you pick it up so it doesn't
tear. My kids always make mini-pies from the leftover dough.