More To-Do Lists Than I know What To-Do With…

Yes, three big to-do lists, and I finally checked one completely off…getting my toddler summer Sunday school class decorated before summer quarter starts!

I’ve been making butterflies, etc. (for decorating the classroom), mega-cooking (for our upcoming camping vacation), and calling/coordinating a zillion things for this weekend’s big 50th wedding anniversary party. It’s time to leave the camping list half-accomplished and zero in on the day-full of family reunionizing that this shin-dig has turned into! All good…I can’t wait to see my extended family from Oregon, Tennessee and elsewhere. And oh, to finally get to decorate that HUGE Fair building that we’ve rented, my hands are rubbing together with glee! I will have to snap pics of it to share with you all…

Please forgive me if I’m sporadic here in blog-land…and cover me with your prayers! I’ve been taking my girls into town each morning so that they can participate in my big sister’s church VBS program…and tonight we have one of my nieces spending the night. We’ll have company in and out from Friday night-Monday morning.

Btw, that muffin recipe I posted this past weekend? You’ve got to try the orange variation with the sugar-coating! Mmm!

OH! We had a baby colt born today! A beautiful bay…course his mama was a bay when we bought her, and she turned into a gray roan. Her babies seem to follow this trend, which we love…if you keep up with bloodlines, this is the Smart Little Lena line…

Love to you all, and you know I’ll try to catch up on all I’m missing when I can…



Cooking and Food

Homemade Muffins: Blueberry or Apple Cinnamon, Struesal-Topped or Sugar-Coated

This recipe is quick, versatile and tasty. I love how high the muffins puff up…and they hold their shape, believe me! I was so glad I had grated orange peel on hand, leftover from my homemade orange cappuccino days…yes, I’m still coffee-free!

MuffinsApples and Muffins

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup milk (I use the equivalent of powdered milk and water)
  • 1/3 cup oil (I substitute applesauce)
  • 1 egg, beaten

Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease bottoms only of 12 muffin cups or line with paper baking cups. In medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt; mix well. In small bowl, combine milk, oil and egg; blend well. Add to dry ingredients all at once; stir just until dry ingredients are moistened (batter will be lumpy). Fill greased muffin cups 2/3 full.

Bake at 400 degrees F. for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 1 minute before removing from pan. Serve warm.

Yield: 12 muffins.


Apple Muffins

Decrease sugar to 1/4 cup. Add 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 cup finely chopped, peeled apple to dry ingredients. Substitute apple juice for milk. Bake at 400 degrees F. for 18-22 minutes.

Blueberry Muffins

Stir 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (do not thaw) and 1 teaspoon grated lemon or orange peel into dry ingredients.

Chocolate Chip Muffins

Add 3/4 cup miniature chocolate chips to dry ingredients. Sprinkle tops of muffins before baking with a combination of 3 tablespoons sugar and 2 tablespoons brown sugar.

Jam Muffins

Place 1/2 teaspoon any flavor jam on each muffin before baking; press into batter. If desired, sprinkle with finely chopped nuts.

Lemon Muffins

Add 1 tablespoon grated lemon peel to dry ingredients.

Orange Muffins

Add 1 tablespoon grated orange peel to dry ingredients and substitute orange juice for milk.

Streusel-Topped Muffins

In small bowl, blend 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar, 1 tablespoon margarine or butter, softened, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 cup chopped nuts or flaked coconut with fork until crumbly. Sprinkle over muffins before baking.

Sugar-Coated Muffins

Brush tops of hot muffins with 2 tablespoons melted butter; dip in mixture of 1/4 cup sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.

Whole Wheat Muffins

Use 1 cup all-purpose flour and 1 cup whole-wheat flour.

Cooking and Food Family Ties

Muffins and Bugs

Table with Muffins and JuiceWell, our Friday morning Bible study luncheon with my parents just ended, they’re on their way home after sharing the morning with us. How special it is to have a Bible teacher in the family, and a mom who can take any food at all and turn it into a gourmet festivity! And Dad is taking my 9 year old on a Walk-Thru-the-Bible, quizzing her each week chapter by chapter through the OT. She’s doing great!

Yesterday my oldest daughter went to work with her daddy. As you all know, he is a cowboy, and since school is out for the summer, she’s been yearning to get in on some horseback riding. So up she got at 6 A.M., donned her jeans, boots and spurs, grabbed her slicker and got in on a full day with dad, which included rounding up calves, working them through the chute (branding, vaccinating) , lunch out with the crew, and then back to the ranch for over three hours of pasture riding. She came home to me sore and sunburned but absolutely glowing. Not a grumpy bone in her body, just deliciously worn out.

Meanwhile, 6 year old and I had been busy. We spent the morning making huge butterflies out of construction paper. I’m decorating my toddler Sunday school classroom with a garden/flower/bug theme…we’ll hang the butterflies from the ceiling. While 6 yo and I crafted, toddler sat happily in her high chair with an almost empty glue stick, paper and a pair of scissors, having a blast.

Then we made muffins for our camping trip–blueberry and apple cinnamon. Kept several out for taste-testing and double-bagged the rest in the freezer…I’ll post the recipe tomorrow. It’s one of those base muffin recipes that you can customize depending on what additions you want to include.

We ended the day in pajamas, tip-toeing into the side yard to follow the progress of five fuzzy-headed baby barn owls swooping from branch to branch and making funny little hissing noises in the process. So cute!

And tonight we have five reserve seats at the local rodeo, courtesy of my husband’s boss…it doesn’t start till 8 P.M. so I’m hoping toddler’s nap gets her good and rested!

Happy June 1st!