Pioneer Potluck: Growing up on a farm cont'd

Posted: Wednesday, April 06, 2011

About waxed floors

Last week I expounded on the virtues of the old black cook stove, and mentioned that my Mother always scrubbed and waxed the well-worn linoleum floor on her hands and knees. It took a while for the floors to dry afterward, and even longer for the "Johnson's Wax" to dry.

Mom shooed my brother Johnny out the door with instructions to "go play" while she did the floor. For some reason, probably hunger or thirst, we went running up the steps to the kitchen door and tried to open it. It was locked! We pounded and hollered, and sat on the steps to wait for Mom to open the door. While waiting, we came up with an idea: "If she isn't gonna let us in, we will just walk to Grandma's and Grandpa's," knowing that Grandma always had sugar cookies and cold milk.

So we, me at 5 years old and my brother at 4, took off up the gravel road to Grandma's, about 1 1/2 miles away. We walked and walked, sometimes sitting on the side of the road, sometimes kicking rocks.

We finally reached the long lane lined with cherry and apples trees, and ran up the path to Grandma and Grandpa's basement house. We ran down the stairs and into the kitchen to a most surprised Grandma and Grandpa, she quilting and he rocking in his wooden chair, his ever-present pipe in his mouth.

He popped that pipe out of his mouth and demanded, "Where's your Mom?"

"She's at home," we both said.

"Humm," Grandpa said, "Where's your Dad?"

"He's cutting hay," we said a little more quietly.

"Humm," Grandma said as she stood up and smoothed her apron out, "How did you get here?"

We almost whispered, "We walked."

"Humm Did they know you were coming up here?"

"No," we said, "Mom locked the door and we were thirsty and so we walked up here."

Grandma got up to get us each a glass of water! No cookies, no milk! She looked at Grandpa. He lookedback at her, took his pipe out of his mouth again, got up and put his shoes on, saying only "Hummmm."

Grandma bent down, got right in our face and said, "You should have told your Mom where you were going."

Grandpa frowned. "Come with me." We followed him back up the long cement stairs, out the old wooden screen door and started down the little path tagging behind Grandpa.

Just then we heard a roaring engine coming into the lane, and watched a big cloud of dust bellowing up just before we saw Dad in his old International pickup. He jumped out, looking like he was really upset and going to bite someone's head off. We had no idea we'd done anything wrong, but we got our first clue: Dad pointed at the pickup with his big hands and said, "Get in the truck!"

Dad said something to Grandpa and Grandma, who quickly turned away and walked down the little path to the old wooden screen door. I told Johnny "I think he is mad at us!"

We both slid down in the seat as Dad climbed in, slammed the door and took off for home. Dad's big hands strangled the steering wheel. He was staring straight ahead. We stared at him, waiting for him to say something, but didn't say a word until we got home.

"Get in the house," he barked, pointing to the door, "Your Mom wants to talk to you."

Our second clue we were really in trouble: Mom wants to talk to us! We climbed slowly up the stairs. Mom threw open the door and said, "Go get a lilac stick and bring it back here."

Third clue: we were in BIG trouble. We broke off a medium-sized stick, knowing that if we broke off a smaller one, we would "get it even harder." We slowly walked back into the house, half handing her the sticks as we waited for "the blistering."

We got smacked pretty hard, probably because we scared her so bad after we "dista-peared." We never walked to Grandma's for sugar cookies again unless we asked Mom -- and she always said NO.

Unknown to us, Dad had seen us from where he was in the hay field walking up the road. Part of our punishment was to let us walk all that way to Grandpa's and Grandma's sugar cookies, then time it just so that when we started back with Grandpa, he would come and get us. I truly think Dad was staring straight ahead -- his big hands on that steering wheel -- because he didn't want a smile to appear on his face.

We had fun with this story through the years, and Dad enjoyed telling it over and again like it was the first time.

Lemon Sugar Cookies

I am sure everyone has a favorite sugar cookie recipe. I love lemon so this is my favorite. I have my Grandma's recipe but it requires 1 cup of lard, and cream of tartar.

That tells you how old the recipe is. Grandma had a kerosene cooks stove.

Her cookies had the slightest taste of kerosene! I thought there was something missing when I fixed my first batch of Grandma's Sugar Cookies!

3/4 cups butter at room temperature

1-cup sugar

2 eggs

1/2 tsp.lemon extract

2 1/2 cups of flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt.

Mix butter, sugar, eggs and flavoring till light and fluffy.

Stir in flour, baking powder and salt. Blend well and store in the refrigerator until chilled. (This keeps for days and day)

Heat oven to 400 degrees.

Roll out dough about 1/8 thick on a floured board and cut with cookie cutters. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet and sprinkle with sugar. Bake 7 to 9 minutes until the cookies are golden.

For Easter, do not sprinkle with sugar but frost later. Call Bob - he loves sugar cookies.

Lemon Fluff

I love Lemon Pie! I always think of Aunt Ruth and her Lemon Curd Tarts. This is light, fluffy, and rich. It dates back to 1929 and used real cows' cream. I modified this to make it quick and easy. It can also be frozen.

Grate the peel of 2 large lemons, being careful not to grate any of the white. Add 3 tablespoons of fresh squeezed lemon juice. In the top of a double boiler (or carefully stirring in a saucepan on low heat), beat 3 large yolks. Add 1/2 cup of sugar, lemon peel and juice, and 1/2 cup of water with 1 taspoon cornstarch. Whisk and beat until very well mixed.

Heat very slowly, stirring all the time, about 10 minutes, until the sauce is thick. Cool, cover, and refrigerate. I usually do this the day before.

When it is completely chilled, fold in 2 cups of Cool Whip. Pour into a small graham cracker crust. Cut in eighths.

Serve with hot coffee and a cokie, and have a bite for me.

Key Lime Pie

2 pkg. vanilla instant pudding

2 limes

1 (8oz.) Cool Whip

1 graham crust

Pour into a large bowl:

2 c. cold milk

2 pkg. 4 serving each Jell-O vanilla instant pudding

2 tsp. grated lime peel

Beat the pudding until thick, add the juice of two limes plus the zest of the two limes and stir in 1/2 tub of Cool Whip. Spoon into a ready made graham cracker crust.

Refrigerate 4 hours.

Top with "Cool Whip" and lime slices.

Lemon Cheesecake Pie

1-4oz cream cheese-room temperature

2 pkgs lemon instant pudding (4oz each)

Cool whip, large tub

1 graham crust


Beat 4 oz of cream cheese until smooth.Gradually add 1 1/2 cups of milk until well blended.

Add 2 packages of lemon instant pudding.

Beat 2 minutes, until smooth

Fold in half tub (8 oz) of Cool whip.

Spoon into graham crust and top with Cool Whip.Chill 4 hours.

Garnish with strawberries, blueberries or raspberries.

I use this for a 4th of July dessert. Red,white and blue. Strawberries, blueberries and Cool whip'

Subscribe to Peninsula Clarion

Trending this week:


© 2018. All Rights Reserved. | Contact Us