My Amish Home | Already looking forward to spring

My Amish Home | Already looking forward to spring

"The Lord bless thee, and keep thee: The Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace." Numbers 6:24-26

On this Tuesday as I write, the sun is playing hide and seek. But at least we have sunshine! Oh so welcome, even if the wind is chilling. It seems as if the weather is warm temperature-wise, but it is dreary and damp, so therefore, it feels colder.

Oh well, in a little over four weeks, we'll have the shortest day; then Lord willing, gradually, the daylight hours will be longer. Yes! And before we know it, it will be spring! Yes, yes and yes!

This is the week of Thanksgiving — overcrowded schedules and all that. I so don't do well with that! I guess I'm lazy!

I have to get my writing all done today, Tuesday, so my papers are ready to leave at the library Wednesday morning, as it will be closed the rest of the week.

On Wednesday, I'll be free to clean and fix food, then I have to go do my one cleaning job in the evening, so yes, Wednesday's schedule is tight.

Daughter Jane and Milton plan to go to Allen County, Ind., on Thanksgiving, leaving the "Littles" at home. So the "biggers'' will bring them over and I will fix lunch for them. I believe Lloyd and Rachel and Galen and Lynetta will be over also, and maybe Jeffrey and Brenda. Deniece is going with Jesse and the Waglers to Ohio for their family Thanksgiving dinner.

I had considered making a breakfast casserole but then decided on mashed potatoes, gravy, noodles and meatloaf — a starchy meal, but who cares?! Once a year surely won't hurt!

Only this time of year, we have several meals like that. Ah, yes! Holidays are so hard on a waistline. And I already have that sneaky old lady taking up residence, tightening the waist of my dresses, hiding things ...

Sitting in here by my desk and seeing the sun shine so nice, it sure beats the dreariness of the last several days.

Our solar-energy system couldn't keep up, what with all the cloudy days. I overtaxed our battery. I had so many batteries to recharge. We use a lot of LED lights.

This morning, everything was dead. I know when the battery on the solar panel gets low enough, it "goes to sleep." How well I can relate!

Anyway, I sort of knew what to do about it but wasn't quite brave enough to try, in case I ruined something. So I left a message with Cadwell Melvin Otto, who put in our latest system.

He didn't respond, so I undertook to do what I thought. I hooked our charger up to the generator and hooked that up to the battery on the solar panel. It seemed to work and nothing exploded. Melvin later left a message, and I had done the right thing. So I guess I'm still learning even though I am a great-grandmother!

The sun not only charged our battery, it energized me, too. I need to clean up the house, but it's not worth it if it stays warm outside. So do I want warm weather and dirty floors, or do I want freezing cold and clean floors? How about warm weather and clean floors? There you go; now you're thinking.

So I guess I'll cut this short and go get the house cleaned up and get things in order so on Wednesday, I can fix food and get ready for Thursday.

I need to clean out the fridge and re-un-organize the pantry to make room to stuff things away in order to make room to set up tables so we have a place to eat.

Oh yes, I must tell you about our granddaughter Kaitlyn, who is 3 going on 14!

She was telling mom Jane a story, going on and on, and Jane needed to go to the bathroom, so she told Kaitlyn to talk through the door, which Kaitlyn did.

Then she said, "Hurry, Mom — I need to use the bathroom really bad! Are you about done, Mom? I'm in really bad shape out here!"

In closing, what would a chair look like if your knees bent the other way?

This week, I have two options for holiday drinks.

GINGERBREAD EGGNOG

1 cup heavy cream

1 (1-inch) piece ginger, sliced

2 teaspoons vanilla

8 whole cloves, crushed

6 allspice berries, crushed

2 cinnamon sticks, broken

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg,plus more for serving

4 cups whole milk, divided

8 large eggs, separated

3/4 cup sugar

pinch salt

rum flavoring, to your taste

Combine cream, ginger, vanilla, cloves, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg and 2 cups milk in a medium saucepan.

Cook over medium heat until tiny bubbles begin to appear around the edge of the pot. Do not let boil. Remove from heat and let steep 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, beat egg yolks with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined. Gradually beat in sugar and salt. Increase mixer speed to high and beat until thick and very pale in color, two to three minutes.

Strain spiced cream mixture and discard spices; return to pot. Slowly whisk 1 cup warm cream mixture into yolk-sugar mixture on low speed; return to pot with cream mixture.

Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a rubber spatula; until mixture reaches 170 degrees and coats the spatula, 12 to 15 minutes.

Place the pot over a large bowl filled with ice water and let cool, stirring occasionally, until chilled, 20 to 30 minutes. Stir in rum flavoring and remaining 2 cups milk.

Just before serving, beat egg whites with an electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form, one to two minutes; fold into eggnog. Serve topped with nutmeg.

HOT WHITE CHOCOLATE

4 cups whole milk

12 ounces white chocolate, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/8 teaspoon salt

pink gel food coloring

whipped topping, if desired

Combine milk, chocolate, vanilla and salt in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture is hot and chocolate is melted, but do not let boil; six to eight minutes.

Add a few drops of food coloring to topping and swirl gently. Top hot chocolate with topping, if desired.

Sections (1):Living
Topics (2):Food, People
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