Garden Veggies

Garden Veggies
Made into tile for my stove backsplash

Portland Rose Garden

Portland Rose Garden
Mike and my 2 youngest sons Ian and Leif

Grandson Michael's Birthday 2014 throwing water balloons

Grandson Michael's Birthday 2014 throwing water balloons
With son Beau, Grandson Luke and his mom Jennifer


I cut this out of a wedding line. I must take more pictures of her.

Monday, October 31, 2011


On a beautiful October day we took the ferry from Cape Cod to Martha’s Vineyard.  We hopped a bus to Vineyard Haven and strolled the streets of the quaint harbor village.  We ate lunch at the lovely Atlantic restaurant with a view of the bay.  Then we boarded another bus headed for Edgar Town to see the gingerbread houses.  Three older ladies got on the bus ahead of us.  The bus had seats on the two sides  and places to stand for overflow.  Mike and I sat down beside the three ladies toward the front of the bus.  We were tuned into all the sights as the bus moved along.  We stopped to pick up another passenger.   She was an older black lady walking haltingly with a cane.  As she hobbled onto the bus the woman sitting next to Mike stood up and moved further down to a seat across the aisle.  She said, “This lady needs to have a seat as close to the front as possible.”   The black woman sat down beside Mike and began to shuffle through her purse looking for her bus pass.  Her hands were bandaged with Velcro stays leaving her fingers free.  She was having a difficult time managing the purse with her ailing hands.  The bus driver was huffing with disdain.  I wanted to go slap him.  The woman finally produced the pass and one of the ladies carried it up to the driver to scan.  She brought it back and Mike helped her put it in a pocket and zip her purse back up.  We moved on down the road.  Because I was reading, “The Warmth of Other Suns,” this event stuck to me.  

“This is the way humans should treat each other,”  I said to myself.  It is wonderful that things have changed.   50 years ago, in the Jim Crow south, the woman would not have been allowed to sit by us,  let alone get any consideration for her needs.  I bought the book in the airport as we were flying off to Cape Cod and have enjoyed every page.  It is about the great migration of blacks from the South to the North from 1917 through 1970.  I lived part of this history but mostly in the Utah bubble where we rarely saw a black person.   I really didn’t have an understanding of all that was going on. 

Isabel Wilkerson takes 3 people living in the South during this migration period and writes alternating parts of their stories from their childhood on to old age and death.  Historical events are told as they relate to the lives of these people:  a woman married to a sharecropper in Mississippi, a fruit picker living in Florida and a black man educated to be a Doctor.  All of them eventually migrate north with millions of other black people during this time.  The Doctor went to California, the sharecropper family to Chicago and the fruit picker to New York.  The author wove a fascinating picture of what was going on in all of these areas of the migration through the eyes of people I began to like and understand.   

My favorite books are about real people, their joys and struggles.  This is a powerful book that touched and educated me about a people and a time that I have not thought much about.    4 stars

Saturday, October 29, 2011


I visited Barnstable Massachusetts this month and took pictures of John Lathrop's home and bible.  See them 2 posts below in the book review "Exiled."

Sunday, October 23, 2011


I have been experimenting with Galette's, which are free formed pies.  I love this dough.  It is crisp and buttery when baked.  I discovered Frangipane in a tart recipe.  It is a filling made with ground almonds...a very nice addition to this dessert.  This is a special recipe.  The apple, chocolate combination is very nice.

Galette Dough
1 ½ C flour
1 stick cold butter
¼ C. Sour Cream
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
¼ C. ice water
Crumble the butter and flour together until blended.  Mix the sour cream lemon juice and ice water together.  Stir into the flour mixture and knead a little until a solid mass.  Refrigerate for 1 hour or more.

Frangipane (A filling made with almonds)
1 C. Roasted Whole Almonds
1/3 C. White Sugar
Put these together in a food processor and chop until fine.
4 T. butter
2 egg yolks (Save at least one of the whites)
1/2 tsp. vanilla
Put in the refrigerator for an hour or more.

Apple Mixture
3 T. butter
3 crisp apples, peeled and sliced into bite size pieces
¼ C. brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
Place the butter in a non-stick fry pan to melt.  Add the remaining ingredients and stir on high heat to evaporate most of the liquid and cook the apples for about 5 minutes.

Dust your counter with flour and roll out dough to a 12 inch circle.  Place it on a piece of parchment and onto a cookie sheet or pizza pan right away.  (The dough will soften quickly and you won’t be able to move it if you wait too long)  Pinch off pieces of the Frangipane and press onto the top of the dough to make a layer to cover up to 2 inches from the edge.  Top with the apple mixture and 10 Rolo’s cut in two.  Fold the two inches of dough around the edge pleating as needed. Beat the egg white a little with a fork and brush the pastry generously with a pastry brush dipped in the whites.  Sprinkle with raw, coarse grain sugar (the best, but plain white sugar will work)

Bake 350 for 30-35 minutes.  Makes 6- 8 pieces, serve with ice cream…heavenly! 

 With the Frangipane

Folded over ready to bake

Friday, October 7, 2011

BOOK REVIEW - EXILED The Story of John Lathrop by Helene Holt

 John Lathrops Home in Barnstable, Which is now a Library with an addition on the back
A window inside the house where they met for church.

I told my friend Jolene Alphin about a planned trip to Cape Cod.  She said, “Oh, you need go to Barnstable and see John Lathrop’s home and bible.”  I said,  “I know about John Lathrop."  I had listened to Susan Easton Black give a lecture at Education Week and I have never forgotten it.   John Lathrop was the 6th great grandfather of Joseph Smith and a host of other religious and government leaders are related to him.  Lathrop was exiled to America after years of abuse and time in the infamously horrible Clink prison.  He was a beloved leader of a group if separatists who wanted to follow their own religious dictates.  

Because of the Laudian persecution (Laud, the bishop perpetuating the abuse), emigration to America increased.  It has been estimated that between 1629 and 1640, twenty-one thousand people came to New England.” (p. 236)  

“With the…deposing of Laud, and the cessation of persecutions, immigration to America virtually ceased.  English hopes were once more centered on the homeland.  For the next century and a half, immigration was minimal.  The growth of the colonies is attributed almost entirely to the early migrations of 1629-1640.  These were the formidable men and women of conscience, Puritans, who in the words of Samuel E. Morison, ‘hewed liberty, democracy, humanitarianism and universal education out of the black forest of feudal Europe and the American wilderness.”  (p. 237)

Helene Holt fictionalized the life of John Lathrop up until the time he came to America.  She won first prize from the Utah Arts Council with this story written in 1987. It is always true of historical fiction that you have a clearer picture of the events when they are humanized.  There were parts that bothered me.  I didn’t like the romance element between Lathrop’s daughter Jane and a cell mate of Lathrop.  It added some interest but it was done in a Harlequinish way.   There were some other cultural things that I thought could have been better researched.  Some of the personal stories had too much of a modern twist, including some of the family interactions.  I wished that events could have had an indication of whether they were based on fact or fictionalized by the author in the way of end notes.   But on the whole I enjoyed getting a picture in my mind of the terrible persecution and abuse that was going on at this time in the name of Christ.  Some of the dialogue between Lathrop and Bishop Laud when Lathrop was defending his beliefs was excellent.  I saw him as a man, like unto Stephen, who was ready to die rather than recant.  The end of the book has some excellent historical information including an extensive list of church leaders and dignitaries descended from Lathrop.

My good friend Jolene is a ninth great granddaughter and she let me read her book.  Thank you Jolene.

 The actual bible that John repaired.

There is a lovely story in the Appendix about how a hole was burned in John’s bible either in prison or on the ship coming to America.  Lathrop repaired the hole and filled in the missing words by heart. This bible is on display in his home in Barnstable.  I can’t wait to see it. 

Sunday, October 2, 2011


My oldest learned to like mushrooms somewhere after he left my home.  I made this for his birthday dinner hoping he would enjoy them and he did.  Even my picky husband took a helping. This is a very nice side dish and I will make it again.  I have always liked thyme with mushrooms so you could leave it out if you want to keep it plain.  This is simple and the mushrooms shined without too many distractions.  

1 lb. sliced mushrooms tossed with ¼ C white wine or chicken broth
3 cloves coarsely grated  garlic or 3 T. grated onion

5 T olive oil
1 C crushed croutons (I like Costco’s) I chopped them in a food processor.
¾ C coarsely grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 C. chopped fresh parsley (or 2 T. Dry)
1 T fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried
¼ tsp Salt   
1/2 tsp pepper 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees 

In a small frying pan put 1 T olive oil and fry the grated garlic or onion until it begins to brown.  Add the 4 T. of remaining oil and toss with the bread crumbs, parsley, Thyme , Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.  Toss the wine or chicken broth with the mushrooms and half of the bread crumb mixture.  Put into a 7x11 or similar size greased casserole (not 9x13) Sprinkle with the remaining crumb mixture and bake for 20-25 minutes.   This makes 6-7 small helpings