Welcome to Marmee's Pantry

Welcome to Marmee's Pantry

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Depression Era Potato Soup

Like many my age, my parents' childhood was spent in the era of The Great Depression. In your case, it could even have been your grand-parents. Because of those childhood memories of going without, they spent the rest of their lives growing, harvesting & canning; fixing instead of just buying a new . . . anything, taking great care of what they have, being able to work w/their hands & simply not being afraid of HARD work. They are/were great examples of that old pioneer saying:

"Use it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,

Or go without!"

Both sets of my grand-parents were farm families in very rural east-central Kentucky ~ one of the most beautiful places in the USA, but so hard hit by the Depression. But, in my humble opinion, there was something wonderful that came out of my Bigmom's kitchen that was passed down to my mom, to me &, hopefully, our girls will follow ~ & that was her potato soup.

Now, this is not your typical restaurant-style, fluffy, creamy "potato soup" ~ this IS real potato soup & it is the ultimate in comfort food at our house. I understand that some of you who may not be used to such simple fare may not think much of it, but to me it is one of the best, most "homey," comforting foods to come from my kitchen, especially on a crisp fall or winter day, & it is what I crave when I'm sick.

You will need:

~16-20 c. water in a large cook-pot
~8-12 medium-size white taters (Idaho potatoes for non-Kentuckians), depending upon the size of your family
~1/4 c. bacon grease (grease from pepper bacon is the best), or butter
~salt & pepper to taste


~While water is heating on stove, dice the potatoes into 1" cubes
~Once water has come to a boil, CAREFULLY & slowly add potatoes to the water so that the hot water doesn't splash
~Add bacon grease, salt & pepper; stir to blend
~Bring back to boil then reduce heat & simmer for 30 minutes, covered or not, until potatoes are tender
~Ladle into a soup bowl; you may need to salt & pepper just a little more depending upon your taste.
~Enjoy one of life's simple pleasures.

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Word-Filled Wednesday ~#39~ Does God "Show" on You?

PASSAGE: "When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the Testimony in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the LORD." ~Ex. 34:29

LESSON LEARNED: How blessed we are to live in a country where we have freedom of worship! To be able to hold the Word of God in our hands, to turn those precious pages & take in that true spiritual food that nourishes our mind & soul. Yes, we are blessed.

But sometimes the familiar is so easily taken for granted, isn't it? And if you think about it, I'll bet you can tell, in your heart, when you have not spent time in prayer & reading the Word. A quick dig to a loved one - here, a nasty thought about someone at work - there, the "bending" of the truth at a moment that makes you wonder "why did I say that?"

When Moses was with the Lord on Mt. Sinai, he came home with his face radiant with the Presence of the Lord. So much so that people were afraid of him. Now, we don't want people to be afraid of us after we have spent time with the Lord, but
. . . can people tell? Are you different because you spend time with the Lord? Do you reflect the attitude of the Lord in a way that makes people wonder "What do they have that I don't have? What makes them different?"

And when you spend time with the Lord you will reflect His glory & they will ask. Be prepared to tell them. (II Timothy 4:2)

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Simple Woman's Daybook ~#135 ~ 9/27/11

For Today . . .

Outside my window . . .
rain clouds moving in. Trees starting to change colors, my favorite time of year.

I am thinking . . .
that it's amazing how well-intentioned people can be so tactless in what they say. Is there a "Tact 101" class somewhere that I can refer these people to? I'd like to send a couple of our DD's friends to it.

I am thankful for . . .
the out-pouring of the Holy Spirit in the form of comfort & answered prayer w/all we've been through in the last 3 weeks. And for the prayers & well wishes of family, church family, friends & blog friends. You all made this so much easier to bare.

From the kitchen . . .
coffee's on!

I am wearing . . .
brown thermal casual dress ~ my fall/winter "comfort" dress. :-)

I am creating . . .
a peaceful, Christ-centered home.

I am going . . .
to work later tonight.

I am wondering . . .

I am reading . . . "The Story."

I am hoping . . .
that extended family issues get worked out.

I am looking forward to . . .
2 days off.

I am hearing . . .
the radio, kitchen gadgets doing their jobs.

Around the house . . . general pick-up, making a few phone calls; I need to make an appointment for Maggie's surgery ~ poor little doggy.

One of my favorite things . . .
having God's Word in my hands. How blessed we are to be able to read His Word & to worship freely.

A few plans for the rest of the week . . .
family time, work, worship practice, tying up some loose ends, worship w/the saints.

Pondering these words . . . "Part of faith is taking action . . . If you feel God calling you . . . Surrender to the leading of the Lord, but also take action. God will do His part, but we need to do our part." ~from The Story adult study guide, page 36.

Scripture thought . . .
"The LORD will fight for you; you need only be still." ~Exodus 14:14

Here's a picture thought I am sharing with you . . .

Our back yard a couple of years ago, I'm looking forward to it looking like this again soon. I LOVE FALL!!!

Read 100's of other Daybooks at Peggy's Simple Woman's Daybook!

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Monday, September 26, 2011

Marmee-isms #8 ~ The Tide Went Out Easily

So the spring days came & went, the sky grew clearer, the earth greener, the flowers were up fair & early, & the birds came back in time to say good-by to Beth, who, like a tired but trustful child, clung to the hands that had led her all her life, as Father & Mother guided her tenderly through the Valley of the Shadow, & gave her up to God.

Seldom, except in books, do the dying utter memorable words, see visions or depart w/beatified countenances; & those who have sped many parting souls know that to most the end comes as naturally & simply as sleep. As Beth had hoped, the "tide went out easily;" & in the dark hour before the dawn, on the bosom where she had drawn her first breath, she quietly drew her last, w/no farewell but one loving look, one little sigh.

With tears & prayers & tender hands, Mother & sisters made her ready for the long sleep that pain would never mar again, seeing w/grateful eyes the beautiful serenity that soon replaced the pathetic patience that had wrung their hearts so long, & feeling, w/reverent joy, that to their darling death was a benignant angel, not a phantom full of dread.

When morning came, for the first time in many months the fire was out, Jo's place was empty [beside Beth], & the room was very still. But a bird sang blithely on a budding bough, close by, the snow-drops blossomed freshly at the window, & the spring sunshine streamed in like a benediction over the placid face upon the pillow, ~ a face so full of painless peace that those who loved it best smiled through their tears, & thanked God that Beth was well at last.

Little Women ~ Chapter 40

{Dedicated to my mother ~ Lorene Chandler, Feb. 1930 - Sept. 2011 ~ Who's "tide went out easily" as we had prayed it would. PTL.}

Blessings from Ohio .
. . Kim<><

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Word-Filled Wednesday ~#38~ Do You Know Who You Are?

PASSAGE: "God said to Moses, 'I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: "I AM has sent me to you."'" ~Exodus 3:14

"But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace to me was not without effect." ~I Cor. 15:10

LESSON LEARNED: We all have our own stories to tell. Moses killed a man and stuttered, yet he became a spokesman for God; David committed adultery and had a man killed, yet God called him a man after His own heart; Rahab was a prostitute, yet she is in the lineage of Jesus. Amazing, isn't it, that God can take our retched, dirty, weak B.C. lives and wash us clean and shiny like a brand new penny? And in our life stories, no matter where we came from, He ~ and only He ~ turns those stories up-side-down, plays the ultimate trick on the devil, and redeems us from the slavery of sin to live life eternal with Him in heaven.

Amazing. Simply amazing.

So, are you really aware of who you are as an adopted child of THE One and Only God? Here's just a glimpse:

~YOU, yes, YOU are a child of the One and Only God (John 1:12)
~YOU have been bought with a price and YOU belong to God (I Cor. 6:19-20)
~YOU are redeemed and YOUR sins are forgiven (Col. 1:13-14)
~Because of Jesus, YOU have direct access to the very Throne of God (Heb. 4:14-16)
~YOU are free of the devil's condemnation against you and YOU cannot be separated from the love of God (Romans 8:31-39)
~YOU are God's temple, the Holy Spirit lives in YOU (I Cor. 3:16)

As I said, this is just a glimpse. In those days when the devil tries to get you down, get out this little list and remind yourself: Because of Jesus, THIS is who I am!

"Since you are precious and honored in My sight, and because I love you." ~Is. 43:4

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Simple Woman's Daybook ~#134~ 9/20/11

For Today . . .

Outside my window . . .
grey, post-rain skies. Sun trying to peek out.

I am thinking . . .
that I hope this Daybook entry doesn't depress readers; but I'm sure you understand. The Daybook is a peek at what's going on in our lives & this is where I am today. . .

I am thankful for . . . 1) answered prayer that my mother's passing was so sweetly peaceful; 2) that I was blessed to be holding her had & stroking her head & face as she slipped into Glory; 3) that my brother was calm & quiet while she passed.

From the kitchen . . .
take-out, not cooking today; maybe Chinese.

I am wearing . . .
jeans, black tank top w/gray "Lakeside" t-shirt hoodie.

I am creating . . . a peaceful, Christ-centered home.

I am going . . .
to pick DD#2 up from work & run some errands.

I am wondering . . .
what my parents' reunion was like. I hope the Lord let my Daddy escort my mom to His Throne.

I am reading . . . "The Story" ~ our church is going through the Bible w/this book as our guide. In 31 weeks we will have gone through the Bible in chronological order, read in book form; all levels of Sunday Schools & Wednesday night Bible studies will all be doing studies that correspond w/the series. So far, it's been really good, deep study. I believe "The Story" was partially put together by Max Lucado.

I am hoping . . .
that Mother's viewing & funeral will go well, that my brother will remain calm.

I am looking forward . . .
to Heaven.

I am hearing . . .
the radio, typing fingers, birds singing outside.

Around the house . . .
a royal mess! lol It's been a loooong 2 weeks between my mom being in the hospital & then Hospice. No one has been home except to shower & change clothes.

One of my favorite things . . . knowing that my parents always went to bed telling each other they love the other & holding hands until they fell asleep.

A few plans for the rest of the week . . .
saying "good-bye for now" to my mother.

Pondering these words . . .
"God has spoken, EVERYTHING else is commentary."

Scripture thought . . . "Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds & glorify God on the day He visits us." ~I Peter 2:12

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you . . .

Together again.

Read 100's of other Daybooks at Peggy's Simple Woman's Daybook!

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Heaven's New Occupant

My mother graciously & peacefully entered Glory last night at 11:40p.m. while I was holding her hand, stroking her head & telling her how much I love her. I am honored that the Lord allowed me the privilege.

"Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of His saints. O LORD, truly I am Your servant, the [daughter] of Your maidservant; You have freed me from my chains." ~Psalm 116:15-16

Thank you for all of your prayers.

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Thursday, September 15, 2011

It Won't Be Long Now...

I cannot help but think how happy my daddy is that my mom will soon be reunited w/him at the foot of The Throne. He must be SO excited.

It won't be long now.

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Friday, September 9, 2011

Childhood Lessons Shape Our Lives

"The domestic fireside is a seminary of infinite importance. It is important because it is universal, and because the education it bestows, woven with the wool of childhood, gives color to the whole texture of life. There are but few who can receive the honors of a college education but all are graduates of the heart. The learning of the university may fade from recollection, its classic lore may be lost from the halls of memory; but the simple lessons of home, enameled upon the heart of childhood, defy the rust of years, and outlive the more mature but less vivid pictures of after days. So deep, so lasting are the impressions of early life that you often see a man in the events of childhood, while all the wide space between that and the present hour is a forgotten waste. It must be remembered that the largest and most important part of the education of children, whether for good or evil, is carried on at home, often unconsciously in their amusements, and under the daily influence of what they see and hear about them. One cannot tell what duties their children may be called to perform in life. They must be taught to cultivate their faculties, and to exercise all their senses to choose the good and refuse the evil."

~~The Golden Gems of Life ~ Gathered Jewels from the Home Circle; by S. C. Ferguson & E. A. Allen ~ 1882
[emphasis mine ~KW<><]

"He decreed statutes for Jacob and established the law in Israel, which He commanded our forefathers to teach their children, so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children. Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget His deeds but would keep His commands."

~~Psalm 78:5-6

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Seasons in Our Lives . . .

Just in case my regular blog friends have noticed that I haven't been commenting on your blogs lately, I wanted you to know why, although I'm still trying to be faithful posting on this blog. It keeps me sane & gives me something else to think about.

My 81 yr old mom has been in the hospital since Sunday afternoon. Her dementia has greatly progressed in the last 6 months along w/some incredibly painful circulation issues in her feet & lower legs. It seems that each "feeds" upon the other & they both get worse & worse.

As of yesterday, my brother & I finally got her to drink about 1/4 of a small bottle of Ensure & take a very few bites of mashed potatoes & gravy, the 1st she'd eaten since Sunday. But we celebrated the success w/much encouragement & even got a smile out of her.

Improvement or not, I think it looks like she may not be long for this world. We are HOPING to be able to bring her home soon . . . we're not sure at this point. But I know my Daddy is waiting patiently for her to join him at the feet of Jesus.

All that to say, that your prayers for my mom, my brother, myself & our families are greatly appreciated. Thank you all, ahead of time.

With a grateful heart to my blogging family . . . Kim<><

Shepherd's Pie

This is a recipe I've used since high school. It's yummy, filling & a family favorite. I'll bet your family will enjoy it, too. :-P

You will need:

~1 lb. ground beef (I used ground chuck)
~1 large onion, chopped
~salt & pepper to taste
~1 can cream-style corn
~1 can whole-kernel corn
~1 can peas & carrots
~2 c. mashed potatoes

~3 qt. casserole

1) Brown ground beef/chuck, onion, salt & pepper; drain off fat & place in casserole
2) Add creamed corn, corn, peas & carrots in LAYERS
3) Cover the layers with 2 cups mashed potatoes, spread to cover entire top
4) Bake at 350* for 25 minutes OR until potatoes are browned.


 With my Scottish ancestry, I like to experiment with authentic recipes. So, I experimented with a few tweaks to my tried and true recipe and I discovered a way to make this already yummy recipe taste even MORE authentic. I was in Shepherd's Pie heaven when I tasted this because it taste exactly like the Shepherd's Pie at my favorite restaurant, The Pub at The Greene. If you want a very authentic taste, please try this (P.S. I also increased the serving size) . . . 

You will need:

~2 lb ground chuck 
~1 med-large sweet yellow onion, diced
~1 TB dried rosemary; crunched & crumbled
~1 heaping ts thyme
~salt and pepper to taste
~2 cans whole-kernel sweet corn
~2 8-1/2 oz cans peas and carrots
~3-4 c mashed potatoes
~1 TB garlic granules
~1 c of shredded Parmesan cheese (Mozzarella works, too)
~3 qt casserole


1) brown ground chuck, onion, crunch rosemary in your hand and sprinkle it and the thyme over the meat; stir to blend while browning mea
2) when meat is browned and onions are cooked through, spread meat mix into bottom of casserole 
3) spread the corn and then the peas and carrots in LAYERS
4) mix the garlic granules into the mashed potatoes
5) cover entire top with the potatoes, all the way to the edge 
6) sprinkle shredded cheese over the entire top of the potatoes
7) bake at 350* for 25 minutes OR until cheese is melted and potato edges are lightly browned        

Enjoy one of my new favorite dishes!!!

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Word-Filled Wednesday ~#37~ Only One Way?

PASSAGE: "And the LORD God commanded the man, 'You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.' . . . When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it." ~Gen. 2:16, 17; 3:6.

"Jesus answered, 'I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.'" ~John 14:6.

LESSON LEARNED: Many non-Christians often say "There can't be Only One Way to be saved and spend eternity with God in heaven."

My response is often: "Why not?" God gave Adam and Eve EVERYTHING a human being could ever desire, INCLUDING a deep, intimate relationship with their Creator God. And yet . . . they did the One Thing He commanded them NOT to do. If they had all that and did the One Thing they were told not to do, my response is why should He have even given the human race a second opportunity for salvation AT ALL? But He did. He chose to send His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, to die as a once-for-all payment for our sins. All we have to do is accept it.

And He's a big God, He doesn't need us like we need Him; but He DESIRES relationship with little ol' us. Amazing, all in itself. And He goes to such amazing measures to draw us to Himself: everything from sunrises and sunsets, to the availability of His written Word in almost every language, to music to worship Him by in almost every genre and taste, to donkeys that talk, to walking this very earth in human form. What an amazing God!

He did all this for all of us ~ for you. Reach out to His One Source of salvation, grab-hold, believe and say, "Dear God, I know I have sinned against You, I repent of my sins and I want to spend the rest of my life loving and serving You. In Jesus' Name, AMEN."

And heaven rejoices! (Luke 15:10)

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Marmee-isms #7 ~ Growing (Up) Pains

"I don't want to look strange or fixed up today," she [Meg] said. "I don't want a fashionable wedding, but only those about me whom I love, and to them I wish to look and be my familiar self." . . .

So she made her wedding gown herself . . . Her sisters braided up her pretty hair, and the only ornaments she wore were the lilies of the valley, which "her John" liked best of all the flowers that grew.

. . . Meg ran down to perform these little ceremonies, and then to follow her mother wherever she went, conscious that, in spite of the smiles on the motherly face, there was a secret sorrow hid in the motherly heart at the flight of the first bird from the nest . . .


"Don't feel that I am separated from you, Marmee dear, or that I love you any the less for loving John so much," she said, clinging to her mother, with full eyes, for a moment. "I shall come every day, father, and expect to keep my old place in all your hearts, though I am married . . . Thank you all for my happy wedding-day. Good-by, good-by!"

They stood watching her, with faces full of love and hope and tender pride, as she walked away, leaning on her husband's arm, with her hands full of flowers, and the June sunshine brightening her happy face, ~ and so Meg's married life began.

Little Women ~ Chapter 25

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Thursday, September 1, 2011

More Lakeside Memories

Earlier this week I told you that we went on a mini-vacation to Lakeside, Ohio ~ one of our favorite places on earth. I thought I'd share a few more photos & memories made in this unique & wonderful place.

Once again, this is our dear friends' family cottage. Many enjoyable memories over the years in this sweet place.

Time goes slowly at Lakeside, don't you just love this old dial phone?

I enjoy cooking in this kitchen. Since most of the cooking utensils, pots & pans, plates, etc seem to have been there since our friends' grandparents bought the cottage, decades ago, it's like cooking in my Grandma's kitchen.

This is the most coveted chair in the cottage!

Maggie enjoys Lakeside, too. Everything from watching squirrels run past the cottage door to walks on the foot-paths along the lake.

Twice a week, a farmer's market comes into Lakeside . . .

. . . & it attracts all the best people.

One day, DD#2 & C & I went antiquing in Marblehead & found this great little cafe'.

And, of course, you can't go to Marblehead w/o seeing the Marblehead Lighthouse (seen on many Ohio license plates).

Back at Lakeside, you HAVE to visit the historic Hotel Lakeside, built in the late 1800's. It is lovingly restored.

Pull up a porch rocker & listen to the water, read a good book or enjoy good conversation.

Then go inside & walk through the living area . . .

. . . on your way to a great supper.

After supper you HAVE to have a yummy frozen drink from Coffee & Cream . . .

And end the day w/a casual walk around the cottage neighborhoods & take a few minutes to relax on the pier.

Ahhhhh . . .

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><
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