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Monday, December 18, 2017

Christ Church Limestone

When we travel, if at all possible, we like to attend a local church on Sunday.  It worked out on our MN trip that we were in Hanna City, IL on Sunday morning.

I looked at what churches were there, and came across the information for the Christ Church Limestone.  It is an Anglican church, which evolved out of the Church of England.

The church web site and Facebook page seemed very welcoming, so it was there we decided to attend service.

It was an excellent decision.

Father Harold Camocho and the entire congregation welcomed us warmly.  In fact, it was the most welcomed we have ever been at any church...EVER.

It is a small and lovely sanctuary.

Aren't the doors on the pews interesting?

Beautiful windows.

They have a nice little fellowship building next to the church.

We were invited to join them in a potluck lunch of chili and sides.

A table in the fellowship hall.

LOVE this photo!!!  (No, it's not mine.)

Before we left, we walked around the grounds.

The gardens are simple and peaceful.

The adjoining cemetery is well taken care of.  

We are fully planning on coming back thru this route on our next Pilgrimage trip.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Shoe Boxes Are On Their Way!

This is when and where our Christmas season every year...

With our Operation Christmas Child shoe boxes.

This year Himself got in on some of the unloading action, helping several people bring in carloads of boxes from their autos.

The truck was looking good!  It makes me happy to think of all those kids who will receive these boxes packed with love.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Friday, December 15, 2017

A Red, White, and Blue Christmas Around the World

We decided to simplify our Christmas season this year.  One of the decisions in that was we would only attend one club/organization Christmas party.  This year we chose the party of Team RWB.

Part of that decision was the fact this year they decided to have a "Christmas Around The World" theme for the potluck meal.  Those setting up the event picked 12 different countries... and the US... and asked those coming to pick a country to make a dish or a few to represent that country.

I waited until the week of the party to see what hadn't been selected.  There were several and we picked food from Israel.

I made Honey Chicken (which was a major hit with the recipe asked for), Kugel, and Butternut Couscous.  Hanukkah started on Wednesday the 13th so I decorated my section with a menorah and silver beads.

This were incredible.  They are huge grapes with a doughy kind of wrapper.  SO good!  I am seeking the recipe!

This salad from South Africa was just beautiful (tasty too).

Who can pass up a cheese turnover?

This must have been delicious... by the time I got there, they were GONE.

Love Mexican bread!  Unfortunately, our local Mexican bakery shut down a while back.  I think these were brought up from Nashville.

Every single thing was wonderful.  I really hope they do this again next year!

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Garage Included

During our "pilgrimage" to MN to see the older relatives, we stay in motels in most places.  Having Miss Persia traveling with us has complicated things.  At one location we had to change from our usual stop over because they jacked up the pet rate to $35 per pet!  

In my search, I found this motel.  Didn't quite understand the "garage included" but the pet rate was great so I booked it.

Once we got there we found that "garage included" was just that.  Each unit had its own room (LONG) garage that you entered your room thru.  

At check in you were given your room key AND a garage door opener.

Pretty cool!

Actually... pretty WARM!  It was so nice to be able to load and unload out of the windy 30-odd degree weather.

The room itself was nice too.  Lots of space plus a fridge and microwave.

We will definitely be back next year!!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Christkindl Market

We went back to the Christkindl Market at one of our local Lutheran churches.

In English that means The Christ Child Market... or Christmas Market.  Until I finally get to see one in Germany, this is our go-to stop.

Speaking of 'stop'... I made a stop to get a tasty German 'donut' (they called it a Kuchle but that doesn't come up in a Google search. ??)

Not our American traditional but it was very good.

Himself bought each of us a hot mulled apple cider.  There were all sorts of tasty looking baked goods here.

The church building area was set up for vendors.  

He's always there.  I love his nice wooden items... top quality stuff.

Loved these boot bracelets.

How about this?  Walking sticks made from tobacco sticks.  Hmmmm...

There was a tent for vendors too.  There were considerable less than other years... maybe it was because we were came on the 1st day Friday opening or maybe because it is just too darn cold in there.  

And a few hardy souls had their own tents.

Second week of December... I just don't get the tent thing...

THIS is what put me in Happy Land...

Wisconsin maple syrup.  A soldier from WI has moved here and his family does maple products.  So he brings them down to sell.  Real deal maple syrup... cheaper and better than Sam's!

OK, if you've never had maple cream you have missed a wonder of life.  It is maple syrup cooked down then beaten for upwards of an hour.  It is smooth creamy goodness for your toast or bagel.

What a fun day!

(Yes, a jar of maple cream did come home with me.  Merry Christmas Teri!!)

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Keep Calm and Bake Scones

I love a warm orange scone from Panera.  What I don't love is the $2.69 price tag.  So when the Extension Homemakers offered a class on baking scones, Himself and I jumped on it.

First we were shown how to make them... seemed easy enough.

The dough of one batch.

Then it was the participants turn to get their hands in the flour!

Himself grating COLD butter for the recipe.

(Have I mentioned that I don't like to bake but Himself loves to?)

He made pumpkin scones.

Separating the dough into workable sections.

Twenty four pumpkin spice scones ready for the oven.  And it cost less than 2 purchased scones!

Himself and two of my club members working on their scones.

Chocolate Chip Scones

Cranberry Orange Scones

Cinnamon Spice Scones

And here are the recipes: