Saturday, May 31, 2008

Pride of Iowa Cookies

Ever since receiving my Mother's Day gift, it's been sitting on the dishwasher, taunting me to take it for a spin. Want to see?


Ain't it purty?

But life has just not allowed me to even play with it - until yesterday. Seeing as how the cookie jar has been empty for a WEEK, I decided it was time to put this baby into action. And what better recipe to test drive it with than my Pride of Iowa Cookies.

Normally the only way to mix this stiff dough is to use your hands. I've never had a mixer that could even begin to handle the dough once you began adding the flour and oats. But with this puppy, that just wasn't a problem.


These cookies are chock full of everything a growing girl needs. It came out of the recipe box from the nursing home, and it looks like Nyda Gleason's handwriting. (Hi Nyda!) She was the cook who taught me how to cook for 40 people and get it ready to serve at 11:30 sharp.

Anyway... in case you're is the recipe for my


1 cup brown sugar

1 cup white sugar

1 cup shortening

2 eggs, beaten

2 cup flour

3 cups quick oatmeal

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. vanilla

1 cup coconut

1/2 cup chopped nuts

1/2 cup raisins (optional)

1 cup chocolate chips (optional) (I didn't have any to put into these :( )

1. Blend shortening and sugars

2. Add beaten eggs.

3. Sift dry ingredients and add to first mixture.

4. Stir in vanilla, coconut, oatmeal, nuts and chips (if using).

5. Mix well. Flatten with wet fork or bottom of glass.

6. Bake at 375 F for 8-12 minutes, or until brown.

Makes 5 or 6 dozen, depending on size of cookie.


Look good - don't they? And they are! Oh, and they're in the box because these are coming to YOU Stacey!! Let's see the postal service crush these babies!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Mother's Day Love

I hope everyone had a really great Mother's Day this past weekend. I know I did! Della offered to come up and paint the woodwork in the living room for me and, believe me, I jumped all over that.

The woodwork throughout the house is Italiante (read: ornate) and painted (read: beautiful). And, yes, it was designed to be painted. Having painted it throughout the rest of the house, I knew how long it takes to get two coats on all the curves and doodads and miles of mopboards with it's curves and quarter-rounds. I painted the dining room, woodwork and all, a few years before and I chose not to paint the living room's trim. My back and knees just couldn't take another room!

So Saturday, bright and early, we start cleaning and caulking the living room woodwork. She wanted to go on into the north room, but luckily we ran out of hours and two tubes of caulk later(!) We barely had enough to finish the living room. Hey - it's an old house.

After a nice supper (uptown) we called it a night, deciding to start painting in the morning. EIGHT AND A HALF HOURS later, we finished the living room! As we lay on the floor, admiring our work, Della turned to me and said "I can't believe I thought we could get TWO rooms done this weekend!" (I knew we couldn't but I wasn't about to discourage her from wanting to help me!)

We were exhausted, sore and numb from being on our knees and up and down ladders for over 8 straight hours. But we were proud. It really does make a difference. Wanna see?


Entrance to the north room


Entrance to the dining room


Detail of a door

Isn't it pretty? I'm glad it's done because it really makes the room look good.

But the BESTEST part of Mother's Day? That my daughter spent it with me. We laughed and talked and shared things that have never been spoken of before. I got to know her just a little bit better and I hope she feels that she knows me a little more now as well. She's turned in to a lovely, wonderful woman and I'm so very proud of her. And she's a damn good mommy too. Quinten's a lucky boy.

Oh....and she brought me this -