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Episodes of an Iowa Summer Day

My family knows me well and understands that summertime’s heat and humidity can be downright fatal to my cheery personality! Basically, with the advent of 90-degree temperatures, my exuberant personality becomes tarred and feathered! For instance, it was a number of years ago when on our farm, Dearly Beloved, Second Born Dear Daughter, and I […]

An Adventuresome Idea

It wasn’t that long ago when Little Missy (9) and Little Sir (7) sat on our kitchen counter and began baking with me, their grandma. Even as young as age three, each had been taught to measure dry and liquid ingredients and had learned the mechanics of stirring batter by hand. Before lilting chants of […]

Evolution of the Okey-Pokey

Hmmm. Did you catch it? One might think that there is a typo in my title. However, there is not, Dear Readers. Of course, it’s familiarly easy to let the Hokey Pokey slide right into the caption’s mix. After all, the well-known British folk dance named as such has been part of mini-movement dance history […]

It’s Just Around the Corner

Only a few days left! That’s right, Dear Readers! July 1 is inching its way into reality when the deadline for entering open class food contests at the illustrious 2018 Iowa State Fair will be upon us. The nominal entry fees have been the same for decades. With a single five-dollar greenback, one to ten […]

Revisiting the Royals

Dear Readers: Years ago, when I first began my weekly chats with you, I had the honor of recording heartfelt memories of women and men whose baking talents enriched the lives of their family. Each honoree was awarded a “Crown of Golden Stars” when inducted into Miss NiNi’s Royal Baking Court. It is with great […]

A Celebration of Cookies

You might have missed it, Dear Readers. It was observed this week—or so the National Day Calendar stated. Yes, National Peanut Butter Cookie Day rolled around again this past Tuesday. The cookie with the familiar crosshatch design again was placed high on the pedestal of cookiedom by peanut-butter-sweet-treat enthusiasts from border to border and coast to […]

A Famous Recipe Was Created

Most of us have heard it—the snap, crackle, and pop conversation around the breakfast table. But, Dear Readers, have you ever heard the story of Mildred (Millie) Day and her association with that same popular Kellogg’s crispy cereal? No? Then, please read further. It was 1928, the year in which the chatty little cereal characters […]

A Treasured Recipe

Oh, Grandma! You made the best banana bread! Dear Readers, how many of you can testify to a similar statement? Not only did my grandma’s banana bread have the perfect blend of flavor and texture, but she baked her loaves in repurposed vegetable tin cans—outside paper labels removed, of course. For her, those cans were […]

An Ice Cream Soda Day

Oh, how well I remember them, Dear Readers—those special Friday afternoon treats at my family’s favorite soda fountain in Capital City, ND. Shiny metal single-pedestal-supported, twirling-soda-fountain stools whose circular seats were covered in sparkly red vinyl lined up in a precise straighter-than-straight row on the front side of the bar. Do you remember them? Walls shielded in […]

The Dutch Girl Cookie Jar

A cookie jar. It was customary kitchen décor in the days of my youth. The ceramic blue-skirted Dutch girl cookie jar that sat on our kitchen counter never turned away a family member’s outstretched hand. The hand may have been large or small, clean as new-fallen snow or dirt-kissed from a hard afternoon at play. […]