Monday, October 13, 2014



This trunk is old ... well over five decades worth of bark and gnarl.

It began as a small shoot sent out from the mother tree ..
 I was barely into my teens when I dug it and planted it here.

I transplanted five saplings .. they grew lofty and wide.
The birds found shelter in their leafy sanctuary.
I loved their strength and shade.

Winds have claimed some lessor branches but not these rooted pillars.
Buffeted by wind and hail, sleet and snow .. weathered but not destroyed.
Reaching ever higher and embracing the goodness of rain and heat and sunshine.

It's time to rest ... to change from intensity and vigor to quietness and repose.

In another form stripped of all decor, yet stately still.
On hold .. and waiting for what lies ahead .. patiently and unafraid.

O God, You have been there for me ..
in the playful times of childhood ..
during the confusion of youth ...
through the hard choices of adulthood ...

 You are my guide as I transition the passing seasons.
You are my strength and pillar.
You never change.
I cling to your promises  when the weight seems too heavy ..
You never leave me alone and afraid.
You help me grow in spite of myself because You are God.
You bless me with so many good things 
that I can hardly comprehend it.
I reach for You and embrace Your Majesty.
You are Holy and Righteous, God of heaven and earth.
Blessed Trinity, one in essence, three in Person..
 Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Thank you for calling me to be Your child.

..that my heart may sing to you and not be silent.
O Lord my God,
I will give you thanks forever.Psalm 30: 12 NIV

Friday, October 3, 2014


October ushers in Apple time and what a delight this recipe turned
out to be.  My daughter made them first and after her expression of
enthusiasm, I had to try them as well.
The pastry puffed and flaked providing the perfect case for tangy apple filling.

Roll the dough as you would for a pie; cut into circles and place
filling in the center, leaving a small border.
Brush edges with egg wash.

Drape the top circle over your fingers and gently shape into a dome.
That makes it easier to conform to the mound of apple filling.

Once the circles are in place, seal edges with the tines of a fork and cut
slits for the air to escape.  Brush tops with egg wash.

Don't they look inviting!

If hand pies seem too tedious and time consuming. this recipe
can be formed into a loaf as well.
On a piece of parchment paper, roll dough into a 11 x 13-inch rectangle.
Place apple filling down the center lengthwise; make 1-inch cuts along side,
making sure cuts are 3/4- inch from filling.

Fold each side alternately over the top to produce a braided effect.
Seal ends well.  Brush top with egg wash and sprinkle with sanding sugar.

Bake until golden brown.

These pies were drizzled with glaze while still warm.


2 cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp. baking powder
                                                                         ½ tsp. salt
1 cup butter, cold and cut into cubes
½ cup sour cream

Blend flour, baking powder and salt and tip into a food processor. 
Add cubes of butter and process until crumbly.
Or alternately, use fingers to work in butter until crumbly.
Stir in sour cream and form into dough.
If dough is sticky, add more flour, one teaspoon at a time.
Or if mixture is too dry to form dough, add ice water, one teaspoon at a time
until a soft dough forms.
Roll dough into a 9 - inch square; fold into thirds.
Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

3 tart pie apples, like Granny Smith
2 tsp. lemon juice
½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ cup sugar
2 tsp. all-purpose flour

Peel, core and dice apples into small pieces to make 2½ cups
Stir together with lemon juice, cinnamon, sugar and flour; set aside.

1 egg
1 tablespoon water
Whisk egg and water together; set aside.
sanding sugar

On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to about 1/8 inch thick.
Using a four-inch cookie cutter, cut as many circles as possible.
Place a small amount of apple filling in center of half of the circles,
leaving a small border. Brush edge with egg wash.
Place second circle of dough over filled circle, press gently to close
and seal edge with tines of a fork.  
Cut vents in dough for air to escape. Brush tops with egg wash.
Sprinkle with sanding sugar, if desired.
Place on parchment-lined baking sheet.
Continue re-rolling scraps and cutting circles until all dough is used.
Bake in preheated 425 degree oven for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.
Yield: 10 hand pies or 1 loaf