Saturday, November 16, 2013

Pumpkin Texas Sheet Cake

My twin sister made this cake for a church luncheon yesterday and it's very good. Plus, it feeds a lot of people and it's easy...the very best of all worlds! Thankfully, there was a bit left so I'm having some right now with a cup of tea:

Pumpkin Texas Sheet Cake

My sister tinted the frosting orange and used orange sprinkles on top, but you can use whatever pleases you and whatever you have on hand. Here's the recipe:

Pumpkin Texas Sheet Cake

Mix well (in large bowl):
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 15-oz. can pumpkin
1 cup oil
4 eggs
Combine and gradually add to pumpkin mixture:
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cloves
Pour batter into a greased 15" x 10" x 1" pan (I use my large jelly roll pan). Bake for 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees


Beat until smooth:
1 8-oz. package cream cheese
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 tsp. vanilla
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1-2 T. milk if you want it a bit thinner (optional)
several drops food coloring, if desired
Frost cooled cake. Cover top with sugar sprinkles, if desired.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Daisy Newman--A Quaker Author

I'm rereading some fiction books currently that are like dear friends to me. They are by author Daisy Newman, a Quaker (also known as Friends) whose books are gentle reads that can speak to us today, even though she wrote them many years ago.

The Kendal novels are my favorite, and titles include Diligence in Love; The Autumn's Brightness; I Take Thee, Serenity; and Indian Summer of the Heart. Kendal is a fictitious Friends community in Rhode Island, and to read these books is to fall in love with Quaker ideals of peace and love as well as the folks who people the pages of her stories. I highly recommend that you search on for her Kendal books or check your local library and start reading. You'll be glad you did!

Winter is the perfect time to settle into quiet evenings at home. And if Daisy Newman's books are part of your plan, you'll happily weather the short days and long evenings that are part of this season.


Saturday, November 2, 2013

Some Fun Resources Related to Plain Living

In two of my previous books, I detailed some recommended resources that pertain to the Plain life and I thought you might enjoy perusing the list. So, without further ado, in alphabetical order, here goes:

(Note: I've taken this list from my book titled What the Amish Can Teach Us About the Simple Life)

Anabaptist Bookstore
875 N. Pacific Hwy.
Woodburn, OR 97071

This bookstore has an excellent website that carries many resources from Amish and conservative Mennonite publishers--many of whom do not have a web presence. There are books on family and marriage, victorious living, youth and adult fiction, Bibles and study aids, and the complete education curriculum from Rod and Staff and Christian Light publishers. There are also a cappella music tapes and CDs for sale featuring Mennonite quartets, quintets, and choirs.

The Budget
PO Box 249
Sugarcreek, OH 44681

Known as the "Amish newspaper," The Budget has been around since 1890. The national edition, published weekly, is filled with letters sent in by Amish and Mennonite "scribes" who relay the news of interest from their communities. Because telephones aren't part of everyday life for many Amish families, The Budget is a handy way to keep abreast of events in surrounding and sometimes far-flung communities where they often have extended family. Even if you're not Amish or Mennonite, The Budget is good reading.

Chupp's Herbs & Fabrics
27539 Londick Road
Burr Oak, MI 49030

Chupp's sells dietary supplements, shoes, fabrics, Mutza suits (Amishmen's suits), hats, gloves, toys and games, wagons, hand-powered small kitchen appliances, and more. You can call or write for a free catalog. More than 100 pages are jam-packed with products and testimonials, many from satisfied Amish customers. Makes for interesting reading.

Gohn Brothers
PO Box 1110
105 S. Main Street
Middlebury, IN 46540

Gohn Brothers has been around for more than 100 years. It sells Amish and Plain clothing and footwear (including old-fashioned, high-topped shoes), books and games, sewing and quilting fabric, sewing accessories, and black Amish bonnets. You can call or write to ask for their free catalog.

One Lehman Circle
PO Box 270
Kidron, OH 44636

Lehman's supplies the Amish and others with a wide variety of items for people who live without electricity or prefer a self-sufficient lifestyle. You can ask for a catalog to be sent to your home for a small fee (it's worth the price) or you can go online to browse and shop. Lehman's has about everything you could wish for--lanterns (including a large selection of Aladdin lamps and replacement parts), nonelectric kitchen appliances and gadgets, canning utensils, barn and farm supplies, wood-burning cookstoves, propane refrigerators, washday supplies, treadle sewing machines, furniture, toys, and garden implements. If you can think of it, they probably have it or have access to a supplier.

Websites for Plain Dress and Coverings (made-to-order dresses) (fabric and modest clothing) (ready-made, modest clothing) (clothing patterns and coverings) (great clothing patterns) (men's and women's plain clothing, coverings, and more) (great website for all things plain)

Even if you don't plan on going Plain anytime soon, there are still lots of items that you'll be interested in. Poke around and enjoy!

Blessings to you and your loved ones,