Old-fashioned Maraschino Cherry Ice Cream Recipe

Any ice cream fans here?

Mmmmm! We are definitely ice cream lovers! There is always a half gallon in our freezer and cones in the pantry. With summer only a few weeks away, I’ve been thinking about when I was a kid and having homemade ice cream.

I saw this post by Sheryl at A Hundred Years Ago, and my mind automatically went straight to childhood. I love how she describes how families celebrated holidays in the past. How fun!

Her recipes always remind me of my grandparents because they are from 1916. My grandpa Abbe was born in 1916, which means his siblings were little kiddos when someone put their Maraschino Cherry Ice Cream recipe into the world.  How cool is that?

Cherries in every form remind me of all the stories Dad has told me about the cherry trees of his childhood. Grandma Wilma had lots of cherries!

Here’s to summer, family celebrations, potlucks, and of course, ice cream! Thank you for letting me share, Sheryl! Can’t wait to make this!

A Hundred Years Ago

Marachino cherry ice cream picture 2

Happy Memorial Day!

Memorial Day in years gone by was often celebrated by parades and local festivals – and incredible homemade ice cream. An old-time favorite was Maraschino Cherry Ice Cream.

I tend to think of Maraschino cherries as a cocktail garnish (or an ingredient in canned fruit cocktail), but Maraschino cherries were a popular recipe ingredient in the early 1900’s. Back then the cherries were a pricey delicacy, and a popular ingredient that hinted of sophistication and class.

The recipe I adapted was in a hundred-year-old Pennsylvania church cookbook, and it was incredibly easy.  This ice cream recipe didn’t require any cooking; I only needed to combine cream, sugar, and lemon juice, and then chill for a few minutes before putting the mixture into the ice cream maker  (the cherries are added after the ice cream is frozen). I actually worried that the recipe was too easy, but my fears…

View original post 161 more words

The Blacksmiths Tree Project

Don’t you just love the capacity of the human heart and how when others are hurting, people seem to drop what they’re doing and help out?

Last night a blogging friend, Genevieve, wrote about the fires in Alberta and reading it got me to thinking about the beauty of the human spirit.

I love how when disaster strikes, differences seem to melt away, leaving an almost united force of good.

When I read Miriam’s story, I knew I wanted to share it. This tree! This glorious tree. The memories, the history, the details on the leaves… Oh my.

It reminds me of Glory, the tree in our back yard. I just wrote a story about it a few days ago. Writing and even reading it, put tears in my eyes. I think it was simply the symbolism that trees have that parallel our lives.

This monument that Miriam writes about is beyond amazing. Thank you for letting me share it, Miriam.

Out an' About

In Strathewen beautiful mosasic letterboxes signify the rebirth of a country community that was devastated by bushfire back in 2009. I wrote about it last week.  Just a couple of kilometres out of the tiny settlement is an amazing tree that I nearly missed when I was there recently.  And which I revisited today.


It’s located at the Peter Avoca Memorial Pavillion, a place you could easily drive through without blinking an eye lid if you didn’t know the history.

After bush fire ravaged this area it was a long time before rebuilding was complete and residents moved back in to start a new life.  Today it’s a lovely country drive but not really on the way to anywhere significant.  An ordinary Australian community.


Then in the middle of nowhere, you see it. Beyond the pavilion.  A tree reaching to the sky, seemingly blending into nature but quite a separate…

View original post 252 more words

Fun Garden Ideas for Kids

Do you put in a garden?

Last year we didn’t get ours done, but this year we did! Yesterday we got it all finished and it looks so nice. Hopefully in a few months we’ll have enough to can and freeze for the winter.

Lately, I’ve also been trying to think of some fun things to do in our yard with Little Bit. Today I saw a blog post and absolutely love the ideas! Actually, I already have some ideas picked out!

For instance, look at the pallet garden. We have a pallet that’s just taking up space. Not anymore! This week I’m getting some dirt and seeds!

She has some really great ideas on her site, if you’d like to have a look.

Swamp Yankee Style

Gardening can be a great family fun activity. My kids love to plant the seeds and watch them grow. They even like to help me water and weed the garden, which is great for me! They are learning a useful life skill, as well a learning about science and connecting with nature. When they get to eat the veggies that they grow, they are learning the value of all the work they put into it.

Here are some great fun ways to help make gardening fun for the whole family:

1.Make them their own garden area to play in when they are little. Give them shovels, rakes, pots, watering can and let them explore gardening on their own.

play garden

2. When they get a little bigger help them plant their own garden to water and watch grow.

1 st garden

3. Pick your favorite children’s story and plant a garden theme around the book.

View original post 42 more words


Don’t you just love when surprises seem to fall out of nowhere? 

I opened up my Facebook feed a while ago, and there was a “share your memories ” post from 2014. 

As fate would have it, it was a something I’d written to my grandma Wilma 2 years ago today. Along with my message, was a recipe of hers that I stumbled across in a cookbook and at the time I was showing it to her. 

If you’ve been around here awhile, you’ll know how much I love and admire my grandma Wilma. She was an amazing woman and was 96 years old when she left this earth for Heavenly adventures. 

Before she passed, I wrote some nice stories about her. One is called, “Windows” and is one of my favorite stories ever. Here is the link, if you’re interested in reading it. 

Another one I really like is called “Written Words” which tells about these folders full of writing that she and grandpa gave for Christmas presents for 11 years. You can read it here, if you want. 

The  day she passed away, my feelings poured out on the page and “She Wore Iowa Well” was born. 

She was definitely smiling down on me that day, because that story still has the most views of any I’ve ever written before or since, and it was even read at her funeral. You could find it here, if you’d like. 

After she passed, I wrote another story about her called, “Her Voice”. It’s about an afternoon surprise that Little Bit and I got out of the blue on Valentine’s Day . The link to it is here, if you’d like to take a peek. 

I guess now is the perfect day for sharing memories of her and that recipe as well. It’s seems funny to me how they so eloquently popped back into my life via Facebook today. 

You see, I was never  even going to get on Facebook. Like ever. But, I eventually took the plunge and I did so only for one reason: 

Grandma was on there. 

Love how things like that happen sometimes. 

Oh, one last thing, at her services, the minister said something that was one of those stop-you-in-your-tracks-true statements:

“Wilma put the Amazing in Grace.”

Yes, she most certainly did! 

Here’s to you, grandma. 

I’m Speechless

Have you ever had something happen to you that was so great you just couldn’t believe it?

That happened to me today. On WordPress, there is a “like” button at the end of the posts that other bloggers can push, similar to the one on Facebook. 

Today when I opened my notifications, I about fell over! My blog hit a monumental milestone today: 


Just want to give a huge shout of thanks out to all of you kind bloggers who read my posts and support my writing. The only thing I can think of to say is,  I’m speechless. 

Welcome Back, Glory

Do you feel connected with nature? 

A couple months ago, I wrote a story about a tree in our backyard. (You can read it here, if you like.)

A few of you kind souls asked me to give an update on how Glory is doing. Because you asked, I thought about you guys a lot as winter grabbed her coat and packed up her bags. 

Spring never really jumped right into the scene this year. She took her sweet time, as if meandering down an old crooked road. 

I watched for signs well into April. The trees all around started getting their leaves, yet Glory seemed stuck in another season’s grasp. 

I worried. Maybe the damage was too much this time. The last lightning strike was fierce. Perhaps giving up was the only option left.

Before we left for vacation, I went to have a look. Standing under those towering branches, tears started pouring down my cheeks. 


Green was emerging, ever so slowly as if spring had been practiced a thousand times and didn’t need to be rushed. 

When we returned from vacation, Glory was already barreling into the work of holding up nests and making shade. 

A hour ago I walked out there. The scars are barely visible now. If I hadn’t lived here for seven years, I doubt I would even see them. 

I stood there and reread “Weathered in Glory”. Upon finishing, I glanced up and said, 

“Welcome Back, Glory.” 

To the woman and child who sat at table 9

Have you ever read something and just wanted to share it with everybody?

Several weeks ago I stumbled across a story that I knew I wanted to share when the time was right. Today feels like the day.

I can’t even begin to wrap words around all the reasons why I absolutely love it, but the one that struck me the most, will probably be the one that would be the least noticed.

Being a miracle momma myself, I tend to be drawn to stories similar to this one, where some kind individual sort of straps on the sun’s rays and blares sunlight into what could otherwise be some moments where heartache gets tucked into pockets and tears get stained on cheeks in those moments when no one is looking.

Autism or not, me and my Lunch Counter mommas (you can read about them here) can relate to her experience that night in the restaurant. Even if ours occurred under different circumstances, say the grocery store or perhaps the mall, we get it. We may not wear the same shoe size, but we can still fit right into those shoes.

What truly struck me about this story is something that until five years ago I wouldn’t have paid much attention to.

But, here it is: He’s a manager.

Why would I notice? Well, my husband has been a manager for the past five years. When he accepted the position, I had no idea what the job would entail.

While there are a lot of positives, I certainly didn’t understand the commitment, the long hours, the time he’d have to be away from us, the pressure of trying to be everything under one simple title, all the days when the complaints seemed to outnumber the compliments.

When I got down to the where the author mentioned being a father and a husband and wanting to spend more time with his children, my heart ached ever so slightly because I knew that my husband could relate.

And, that even though he’d never even read this story, he would be able to slip right into those shoes.

I hope you like it too.

Kindness Blog

I did not introduce myself to you. My name is Tony Posnanski. I have been a restaurant manager for fifteen years now.

My day consists of making sure my restaurant runs well. That could mean washing dishes, cooking and sometimes even serving tables. I have also dealt with every guest complaint you can imagine.

A few weeks back you came into my restaurant. I was very busy that night. I was running around helping the kitchen cook food. I was asked to talk to a table close to yours. I did and they said your child was being very loud. I heard some yelling while I was talking to that table. I heard a very loud beep from a young girl.

I started to walk to your table. You knew what I was going to ask. You saw the table I just spoke to pointing at you. I got to…

View original post 610 more words

We Took the Walk

Do you ever decide to go for an unplanned stroll? Like you’re going through your day and suddenly decide to just step into the scenery for a few minutes? 

A few weeks ago I wrote a story called “Take the Walk”. (If you’d like to read it, here’s the link.) It was my realization that busy is simply a matter of perspective. 

The day before we left for vacation, Little Bit and I were in town and it was the most beautiful sunny day. He suggested going for a walk and we didn’t because we had all this stuff to do. In my story, I share my lessons learned by not going for a walk that day. 

Yesterday, we were back in town. Guess who suggested a walk again? This time, I threw busy to the wind. 

Our little town did not disappoint. It’s full of history and beautiful things to see. You wouldn’t believe the fun we had, when this time we took the walk. 

A Surprise Party, Well Sorta

Don’t you just love surprises? 

This morning I had a super early appointment and while I was getting ready, my house was extremely quiet because everyone else was in bed. 

When I walked outside to leave, I felt like I entered into something amazing! 

The birds were talking up a storm and having themselves a little surprise party, well sorta. 

When We Deliver the Rolls

Do you enjoy cooking for others?

I’ve noticed that the act of cooking and/or the sharing of the food seems to draw people together.

Something I learned from my mom, my grandmas, and a lot of friends over the years, is that putting love and compassion into cooking can really make a difference in someone’s life. What I love about sharing gifts from the kitchen is, it makes it easy to “show up” in people’s lives at times that might otherwise be awkward.

For instance, it’s hard to know what to do for a friend who suddenly lost her dog, but dropping off a pie or cookies expresses care and concern in a not so intrusive way.

I also love how cooking is personal. It’s a great opportunity to make someone’s favorite dish or if someone is allergic to say, wheat, different recipes can accommodate that. It’s almost like cooking has the ability to sometimes bridge that gap between wanting to do something for someone, yet not really knowing what to do. When I don’t know what to do, I bake.

I thought it’d be fun to share ideas and maybe have a recipe swap, if you’d like. Right now my go-to recipe is cinnamon rolls. I like that they are easy to transport if I need to drop them off to someone miles from my home, and they mail quite well. A few weeks ago I mailed some to Iowa, and I heard they arrived intact.

So, my first recipe I want to share is:

Baby Super Man’s Cinnamon Rolls (named for my friends’ miracle baby that I wrote about in my story called Extraordinary Events)

Mix 1/4 oz pkg quick rise yeast with 1/4 cup warm water (110 -115 degrees). Set aside until it bubbles and activates the yeast.

Meanwhile, mix 2/3 cup milk, 1 egg, 1/4 cup melted butter, and 1/4 cup sugar together. Add in yeast mixture.

Mix in 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt, and 2 and 3/4 cups of flour one cup at a time.

I mix with a spoon and knead by hand. After kneading about 5 minutes or so on a floured board or counter, shape into a 12 x 8 rectangle. Brush the dough with a 1/2 cup of melted butter.

Sprinkle 1/2 to 3/4 cup brown sugar over the melted butter on the dough and pat down slightly. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of cinnamon over the brown sugar.

Starting on the 12 inch side, roll the dough up so that it is 12 inches long when rolled. Cut into 1 inch slices. Put into a greased pan. I use a glass 9 x 12 pan. Let rise. Depending on the weather and the coolness in the house, sometimes I let mine rise in a slow oven at 170 degrees with the oven light on.

When they are raised, bake at 375 degrees for about 15-25 minutes, depending on whether they rose in the oven or on the counter.

Top with your favorite frosting or glaze.

So far, Little Bit and I have made many pans of these cinnamon-y delights. Now, we even have requests for them. I love the idea that he is learning compassion through cooking, just like I did, and that he sees the happiness that a simple offering of food can bring each time, when we deliver the rolls.