Monday, November 24, 2008

Thoughts of Thanksgiving

I remember when I was a child Thanksgiving being so different than it is today. We spent the week making construction paper turkeys, Indian costumes, and essays of what we were thankful for. We had our Thanksgiving meal at the home of my Grandma Anderson. Her kitchen was small, so we kids had to stay out. There was always football on in the background and my cousins and I took our first look at the Wish Books from Sears, JC Penney, and Mongomery Ward. It was at that time that we made our Christmas list. I will say that later years on my Papaw's side, the list needed to be in by August. We gave thanks as a family and sometimes ended the night with a fight armed with cans of Reddi Whip. Nowdays, the Christmas decor has been in the store since Halloween, several already have their trees up, and the shopping is almost done. While we made the decision 14 years ago to hold decorating for Christmas off until after Bekah's birthday, I confess to visiting to see the latest ads. We see that Thanksgiving has become the holiday to skip over to quickly get to Christmas. We're going to try to focus this week on being thankful. It is a concept that is being lost in today's society. I'm reminded of LaRita, a friend in Nashville, who is such a gracious person. She never ceases to tell you "thank you" for anything that you do for her. She's taught her children to do the same. I want to be more like her and will challenge myself to thank others, not just this week, but all the time. I'll begin first by thanking you for being our friend. Thank you for taking the time to see what is going on in our family. Have a blessed Thanksgiving week!

The First of Many Ammendments

I knew I'd forget something (and "thing" may turn out to be many "things" as I have my second cup of coffee). David and Becky greeted us when we returned with a delicious meal that we were able to eat on for days! It was so nice not to have to cook as we faced the pile of laundry, mail, and "to do" list.

List of Thanks for Last Month

I promised that I would publicly thank all who helped us get through our difficult time last month. I hope I don't leave anyone out, and please know that this is specific to our immediate family, as I don't know everyone that would cover Dennis or Mark and Jessica's families. Scott and Val were with us when we received the initial news and immediately began to pray. Val and the kids offered to come up from Nashville to be with us. All of the teachers at CEC have been generous and understanding in the girls missing two weeks of school, giving them ample time to get things made up. Tim's boss was phenomenal in allowing him to take as much time off as needed. Renee took care of submitting our Boy Scout Popcorn order. Tammy, Molly, and Mary took care of the 1st and 2nd grade choir. Amanda took care of the school age class during Bible study. My mom took care of our dogs. Jen took my mom to the store to get more dog food when we ran out. Jen and Julie did an awesome job on our yard. Dick and Carol brought food for us while we were at the nursing home. Grandma bought us all a wonderful meal at Bob Evans. Paul & Jeanette made sure we had something to eat while we were at the funeral home. Aunt Karen, Aunt Nancy and Tom sent beautiful flowers. Aunt Karen, Mr. & Mrs. Busch, Cherie, and Mrs. Carnes are among many that came to the funeral home to support us. The members at The Gathering Place provided a great meal after the funeral. Diane, Deanna, Jen, Jenny, Aunt Rosie, and many of Dennis' neighbors brought lots of food to have at the house! Many gave donations to the Alzheimer's association and/or bought Gideon Bibles. The flood of cards and e-mails was huge. George & Connie put their own grief aside and made sure that our families were taken care of with food, crafts, games, tissues, or any other necessity during the long days at the nursing home. To all of you, we are so grateful! There is a special place in our heart for the leaders and members of Ninth and O Baptist Church. Thanks to all of you for your continued prayer support. You are our second family. I'll close with a quote from 1 Thessalonians 3:9, "How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you?" May God bless you.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Ode to Granny's Thanksgiving

Ode to Granny's Thanksgiving

Let's begin with the corn pudding

Turkey to carve, potatoes to cook

Granny didn't have to look in a book.

Pounds won't be lost with the cranberry sauce

When it came to the kitchen, Granny was the boss.

Delicious green beans and creamy cole slaw,

It was all loved by Papaw.

Pumpkin roll was tasty and sweet

Spending time with family is a special treat.

by Haley Stauffer

Another Blog Blackout

I know it's almost been a month since I've posted and that seems odd since I was posting more than once a day just a few weeks prior. There has been much going on in our lives, but there are some areas where I worried that I may say the wrong thing. The best thing in those times is to keep my mouth (or fingers) shut so that I don't offend. Too, we were SO far behind in school, chores, laundry, you name it that I haven't had the time to make this a priority. Haley had a few school assignments that I wanted to post though. I hope you enjoy.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Cookie Sheet Cake

Over the last few weeks you've had the chance to read about some things that made Jerri special. I thought it would be nice for you to get a "taste" of how wonderful she was as well. Cookie Sheet Cake was something that was handed down from her mother ("Ma" or Helen), and is a big hit with the whole family. A big thank you to Linda and Brittney for making and bringing one to the dinner after the funeral. They would make it in a big jelly roll pan. Depending on the size, she would sometimes leave a little of the batter out in a small pan for them to have at home, then take the big pan to the event they were attending. There are two choices for icing. Tim prefers the caramel, but both are delicious.

In a large sauce pan over the stove mix on medium heat:
1 Cup Water
1 Stick of Butter (or margarine)
1/4 Cup Cocoa Powder
-mix until it comes to a boil, then add:
2 Cups Flour
2 Cups Sugar
-take it off of the heat and add:
2 Eggs
1/2 Cup Buttermilk
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1/2 teaspoon Salt
-place it in a jelly roll pan and bake for 20-25 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
-while it is baking, wash out the pan you just used and re-use it for the icing. I also like to use a nylon whisk that Pampered Chef has to keep the icing smooth and free of lumps. Start to make the icing over low heat as soon as it comes out and pour over a warm cake. Be careful, it may overflow a little.

Chocolate Icing:
5 Tablespoons of Milk (Jerri always had skim)
1/4 Cup Cocoa Powder
2 Tablespoons Butter
3 Cups Powdered Sugar (1/2 cup at a time)
1 teaspoon vanilla

Caramel Icing:
1 Stick Butter
1/3 Cup Milk
1 Cup Brown Sugar
-bring this to a boil, then slowly add
3 Cups Powdered Sugar