Much has transpired since I have last written to you my dear reader. Somethings that are unchangeable, others that are changing still. For now my own words have been stifled so I leave you with… More
(I in no way own the above image I found it on the internet. The originally painting was done by the American Artist Gilbert Stuart in 1797)
Monday may have been Presidents Day here in the United States, but we would not be able to celebrate this day if it wasn’t for America’s very first President, and commander and chief, George Washington. For those of my readers who may not be familiar with America’s birth let me tell you a little story.
A story, that some, may call a fable but one that embodies the ideal of George Washington.
George Washington was born February 22, 1732 to Augustine and Mary Ball Washington at their plantation home in Virginia.
As a teenager, it is said that Washington, showed an aptitude for mathematics, and became a successful surveyor. He led expeditions in the Virginia wilderness. These expeditions earned him enough money to purchase land of his own. Which as you know, being a landowner gave you great importance in society during this time period.
It is common knowledge that George Washington was commander and chief during the Revolutionary War; however, his first experience in the military came about in December of 1752, when he was made a commander of the Virginia militia.
It is safe to say that his impressive leadership skills and known honesty is what convinced the delegates that he was by far the most qualified man to become the nation’s first President. However though George Washington may be best known for the very briefly described events above. To all school age children he is better known for something else. He is known as the boy who could not tell a lie. He was so honest that even when he did something very bad, such as, cutting down his father’s beloved Cherry Tree, he was brave enough to admit it, no matter what the consequences. This story has never been truly validated. In truth it lives as a myth for most Americans. Why is this story so well loved then if it is not true? Well because it teaches us a few lessons, the first being the importance of being honest, “for the truth shall set you free”. The second being the importance of forgiveness, but it also shows us what it means to be brave, bravery for standing by one’s actions that no matter what the consequences are, good or bad you are forthright about your actions. And this idea, this story, is what embodies the essences of our very first President, but also what the United States of America, should, and did stand for; “Truth Liberty and Justice for all”. I have attached the original story below and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
“The Fable of George Washington and the Cherry Tree”
From The Life of Washington, by Mason Locke Weems, 1809
“Never did the wise Ulysses take more pains with his beloved Telemachus, than did Mr. Washington with George, to inspire him with an early love of truth. “Truth, George”‘ (said he) “is the loveliest quality of youth. I would ride fifty miles, my son, to see the little boy whose heart is so honest, and his lips so pure, that we may depend on every word he says. O how lovely does such a child appear in the eyes of every body! His parents doat on him; his relations glory in him; they are constantly praising him to their children, whom they beg to imitate him. They are often sending for him, to visit them; and receive him, when he comes, with as much joy as if he were a little angel, come to set pretty examples to their children.”
“But, Oh! how different, George, is the case with the boy who is so given to lying, that nobody can believe a word he says! He is looked at with aversion wherever he goes, and parents dread to see him come among their children. Oh, George! my son! rather than see you come to this pass, dear as you are to my heart, gladly would I assist to nail you up in your little coffin, and follow you to your grave. Hard, indeed, would it be to me to give up my son, whose little feet are always so ready to run about with me, and whose fondly looking eyes and sweet prattle make so large a part of my happiness: but still I would give him up, rather than see him a common liar.
“Pa, (said George very seriously) do I ever tell lies?”
“No, George, I thank God you do not, my son; and I rejoice in the hope you never will. At least, you shall never, from me, have cause to be guilty of so shameful a thing. Many parents, indeed, even compel their children to this vile practice, by barbarously beating them for every little fault; hence, on the next offence, the little terrified creature slips out a lie! just to escape the rod. But as to yourself, George, you know I have always told you, and now tell you again, that, whenever by accident you do any thing wrong, which must often be the case, as you are but a poor little boy yet, without experience or knowledge, never tell a falsehood to conceal it; but come bravely up, my son, like a little man, and tell me of it: and instead of beating you, George, I will but the more honour and love you for it, my dear.”
This, you’ll say, was sowing good seed!–Yes, it was: and the crop, thank God, was, as I believe it ever will be, where a man acts the true parent, that is, the Guardian Angel, by his child.
The following anecdote is a case in point. It is too valuable to be lost, and too true to be doubted; for it was communicated to me by the same excellent lady to whom I am indebted for the last.
“When George,” said she, “was about six years old, he was made the wealthy master of a hatchet! of which, like most little boys, he was immoderately fond, and was constantly going about chopping every thing that came in his way. One day, in the garden, where he often amused himself hacking his mother’s pea-sticks, he unluckily tried the edge of his hatchet on the body of a beautiful young English cherry-tree, which he barked so terribly, that I don’t believe the tree ever got the better of it. The next morning the old gentleman finding out what had befallen his tree, which, by the by, was a great favourite, came into the house, and with much warmth asked for the mischievous author, declaring at the same time, that he would not have taken five guineas for his tree. Nobody could tell him any thing about it. Presently George and his hatchet made their appearance. George, said his father, do you know who killed that beautiful little cherry-tree yonder in the garden? This was a tough question; and George staggered under it for a moment; but quickly recovered himself: and looking at his father, with the sweet face of youth brightened with the inexpressible charm of all-conquering truth, he bravely cried out, “I can’t tell a lie, Pa; you know I can’t tell a lie. I did cut it with my hatchet.”–Run to my arms, you dearest boy, cried his father in transports, run to my arms; glad am I, George, that you killed my tree; for you have paid me for it a thousand fold. Such an act of heroism in my son, is more worth than a thousand trees, though blossomed with silver, and their fruits of purest gold.”
Weems, Mason Locke. The Life of Washington. A new edition with primary documents and introduction by Peter S. Onuf (Armonk, New York and London: M.E. Sharpe), 8-10.
Image: “A Few Truths,” trade card from the twentieth century, courtesy National Museum of American History, found in Margaret B. Klapthor & Howard Alexander Morrison, George Washington: A Figure Upon the Stage (Washington, D.C.: The Smithsonian Institution Press, 1982), 72.
You can find the above story at http://gwpapers.virginia.edu/history/articles/weems/. You may also find a more in-depth History of the brief facts I gave you about George Washington’s life on the History Channels website at http://www.history.com/topics/us-presidents/george-washington.
Until next time when I return to more storytelling
I remain as always respectfully,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell
P.S. Happy Birthday President Washington!
(I in no way own the above image I found it on the internet)
Slowly, slowly it begins,
Slithering its toxic voice into your mind,
Come back to me my love, I call, but he does not hear.
It first grasps, and ceases your heart, then your mind,
Downward it pulls you,
Tightening it’s ever growing fist around your slowly diseasing mind.
Sadness fills and swells bellowing inside your chest.
No words to describe your pain;
No explanation for this pain.
Oh my fair one, my love can you not hear me?
I call to my fair one, my love, but he does not answer.
I stand close by; as your pain increases, but I cannot reach you.
Come back to me my love, I call, but no answer does he make.
The pain rises and falls with every breath he takes.
Sorrow becomes heavier and heavier leading to agony,
Then agony becomes numbness,
And numbness leads to a self-isolation.
Come back to me my love, I call, but he does not hear.
Feeling trapped, your eyes dart about you, always searching for escape.
Oh my fair one my love, why do you run from me?
With each moment you distance yourself,
Running faster and faster,
The pain increases relentlessly.
You retreat in self-loathing.
Will you always run?
Tears burn down the cheeks of my fair one, my love.
My prayers seem to fall on deaf ears,
Yet something stirs from within,
Still you flee into your wilderness,
Alone are you my love, my fair one
I know not where you have gone.
Drenched in the sent of defeat,
And with a weight so deep you suddenly break,
Upward your fears fly before
Imploding crashing to earth like waves upon a shore,
Oh, my fair one, my love,
For that moment all is still all is quiet,
And a still voice creeps over you.
All is finally at rest and at peace.
Pain, makes way for peace, and peace for joy,
And joy for love.
The sorrow has left, and all that is left is my fair one.
~ Cheyenne E. Mitchell
Until next time when I return to more literary talk.
( I in no way own this image I found it on the internet)
Do you ever notice how on most winter afternoons the natural color seem to hide from your eyes? The greens of the trees and the colors of budding flowers are all but gone, and all that is left is they gray of the clouds, the brown of the earth. If you look very hard and hope very much you will sometimes see a bright red Cardinal flutter past you for an instant. In short winter has a tendency to be quite drab and lifeless. Except for on Windy Hill.
Windy Hill is a beautiful place. In the springtime there are flowers that grow there are so bright that it looks as though brightly colored paint was splattered upon the hill. You can hear the birds singing so cheerily that everyone who hears it never wants to leave this place. In the summer the warmth and the breeze carry the smells of the ocean and it tickles your nose as it floats past. Then comes autumn. Autumn is a season unlike any other, colors burst forth before your eyes before showering down upon you like a gentle rainstorm. Everything is joyous on Windy Hill there isn’t a day that goes by when the shade tree isn’t a home to some weary traveler. The flowers, ah the smell of those buds intoxicates every person and butterfly that flies past. And those flowers wait with open petals for the butterflies to land for a moment, so they can rest their wings. Roses, daisies, peonies, tea roses, poesies, alyssum dance in delight; but out of all these beautiful flower beds there is one flower bed that stands alone. That is bed of the poppy flower.
What makes the poppy flower stand-alone in a field of beautiful flowers and trees? All of the flowers are brilliant to be sure, but none quite so, as the bright red and crimson blooms of the poppies. The poppies are revered by the people of Windy Hill. Strangers that pass by Windy Hill marvel at how particularly good care is taken of these poppies. And how only one man is allowed to prune them. He has been taking care of the poppies for as long as anyone can remember. In fact the oldest person to live in the oldest part of the town of Windy Hill recalls his father and grandfather, and his father before him, telling tales of the jolly old gardener of Windy Hill. Very few ever who live outside the walls of the town of Windy Hill ever stay to talk to the old man, even though all are welcome to. He loves to have a good “jaw” as they say. Loves a good laugh and never misses an opportunity to spread his laughter and cheer. “What a more pleasant a way then to spend the day walking and talking amongst the poppies”, he was often heard saying. Day after day season after season, the old man would prune all the flowers of Windy Hill, paying extra attention to the poppies. He felt that amongst all the flowers and shade trees of Windy Hill, the poppies were often overlooked. He wanted to make sure they knew that they were welcomed amongst the other flowers. The years went on in their natural progression as they usually do, with the gardener doing what he always does. That is until the gardener met a poor woman.
It was a typical winter’s day the gardener was gently pushing the freshly fallen snow off the flowerbeds. The gardener straightened up after working for a particularly long day noticed a small woman under one of the shade trees in the garden. The jolly old man quietly and gently approached her. As he did he noticed her torn dress moth-eaten mittens and a small basket she carrying in one hand and a blood filled tissue in her other. The old gardener stood there silently for a moment watching the woman as she coughed into her tissue. It was very obvious the woman was quite ill, and may not last if she did not have shelter soon. It was now for the first time, in what was a very long time the gardener of Windy Hill felt a deep and silent sadness. It was a sadness so deep that it created a hairline crack in his heart.
“What is your name?” asked the gardener.
“Viollet” answered the woman.
“What is in the basket?” asked the gardener
“A baby” answered Viollet
“Is it yours?” he asked.
“No,” she answered “I found the baby placed outside a dumpster I am trying to find it a home, can you help me?”
“I can help you both,” answered the old man
“Why would you want to help me”? she asked
“Because you want to help it,” said the man pointing to the baby whimpering from the cold in its basket.
“I will need to go prepare a shelter for you both and then I will come back for you” said the jolly gardener who was now filled with great empathy and sadness for the woman.
“How do I know that you will come back for me?” Asked the woman
“Do you see those poppies over there?” he asked
“Sir it is winter there are no poppies growing now.”
“Look harder and you will see the poppies”
“Sir I do not see the poppies”
“Come now try again, look for the poppies”
It was now that a large crack was heard from beneath the snow, and from the earth came up a little red poppy then another, and another, until all of Windy Hill was covered in poppies.
“I will come back for you, these poppies are my treasures they will watch over you until I return, until I can come back to bring you to your permanent home. I will leave you and the child with my friend, She will give you work and a home until it is time. But there is one thing I must ask of you to do.”
“Anything” said Viollte “ I am undone by your kindness”
The jolly old gardener smiled at her words and said “You must take care of my poppies until I return and they will bloom for you through every storm, every season, and when everything else has died away. They will bloom until I can come back and tend to them myself.” He then handed her a poppy that grew from the crack in his heart, and now made a home for its self in the left breast pocket of his shirt. He quickly plucked it from his pocket and pressed it into her hand. Keep this poppy with you as a reminder of my return.”
Viollte agreed and every day she was found with the baby she found happily pruning and caring for the old gardeners poppies. Every day that she tended the poppies her health improved. The years began to pass, the woman waited patiently for the old man to return, never giving up that he would return back to Windy Hill. She married and her own children, and her children married and had their own children and so on. One day as Viollte was now a very old woman she sat by the window watching the snowfall around the poppies on Windy Hill, when she heard a knock at the door. Going to the door and opening she could not believe her eyes, for there stood before her, her old friend the jolly gardener.
“I knew you would come back for me I just knew,” she cried
The gardener just smiled put out his hand and said “ come it is time your place is ready”
“ What about the poppies?”
“ As I promised they will continue to bloom for I will be tending them even from afar”
“Will they continue to bloom in winter? They cheer the people of Windy Hill so, when the red blooms peek through the snow in winter.” She said
“They will always grow and bloom and give joy, for this town and those flowers were created to be filled with love for there is no room for anything less.”
And with that Viollte left with the jolly gardener and the two were not heard from again. However as I look from my window and gaze up toward Windy Hill I see the gardener’s new helper tending to the poppies, and laughter fills my heart to see the crimson blooms in death of winter.
I hope you like today’s tale and this finds you in good health.
Until next time when we continue with more literary talk and story telling I remain as always respectfully,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell
I hope everyone had a healthy and happy Holiday Season, and that this reaches you in good health!
To make up for my long absence please enjoy the forthcoming story.
I hope each of you will have a to a new and happy year .
Until next time I remain respectfully,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell
(I in no way own the above image I found it on the internet)
As I close the pages of one of my favorite novels, after reading it to its completion for the fifth time, I am quite at a loss. A loss as to why, after centuries that men and women still have not changed! You see I have been reading Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility. I love the romanticized natures of her characters. One couple, one dynamic in the novel, no matter how many times I read it, always fascinates me. This book is also a favorite of Jimmy Stewart’s character Elwood P. Dowd in Harvey. As such I think Elwood P. Dowd would agree with me, that one of the most predictable yet, captivating love, or in this case, the lack of love, is between Willoughby and Marianne Dashwood. For those of you who have not read this wonderful novel I shall give you a very brief account of their love affair. It is as follows:
Marianne at times can be very sensible and clever in her own right, however, she has a way of “empathizing” everything too deeply; her sorrows, her joys etc. She shows almost no moderation or control of her actions. Including her passionate love for the very self-serving, and shallow Willoughby; to quote the authoress on Marianne’s love for Willoughby “His person and air were equal to what her fancy had ever drawn for the hero of a favorite story.” ~ Jane Austen Sense and Sensibility What sort of woman wouldn’t love a man who was a conglomeration of storybook hero’s?
Willoughby of course deserts poor Marianne Dashwood. She pursues him thinking that he still loves her and wants to marry her. Once he rejects her again, Marianne eventually looses all self-control and becomes quite ill. This is when in the novel I begin cursing all men as lecherous fools, having recently been entangled with a charming yet non-committal man myself. Yet for Marianne, like most impulsive heroines of the Regency Era, she recovers, and realizes the error of her ways by making a grandiose speech: “Everybody seemed injured by me. The kindness, the unceasing kindness of Mrs. Jennings, I had repaid with ungrateful contempt. To the Middletons, the Palmers, the Steeles, to every common acquaintance even, I had been insolent and unjust.” ~ Jane Austen Sense and Sensibility
Women still chase after men who have no real value for them as living breathing human beings; they are viewed as play things, or cute little accessories. Thus it makes relationships awfully difficult when a woman is looking for a solid and dependable man. And after meeting so many Willoughby’s myself I can understand a woman’s apprehension when it comes to dating.
Now men, please do not think that I am putting down your entire sex. I am sure there are plenty of Colonel Brandon’s in this world (The man Marianne would marry). He was “a noble man” who remains devoted to his “love” though; his love was not always returned or recognized.
In short I charge you both men and women who read this post about Willoughby, not to be a Willoughby or a Marianne. Be honest always when you can with your affections or lack their of and you will find both parties to be more content in the long run.
Until next time when we continue with literary talk,
I remain as always, respectfully,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell
(To the Left the real Santa to the right the fake Santa) and I do not in any way own either image I found it on the internet)
Today Christmas Day we celebrate the Saviors birth, open presents, and watch the 1947 version of the Miracle on 34th Street. As I watch my favorite holiday classic, and see how a very young Natalie Wood interacts with Santa, I reflect experience of meeting a Santa Claus. I say “a Santa” because it was certainly impossible that this charlatan was the real Santa.
The year was 1995 and my mother took a very excited six-year-old me to see our local mall Santa. Santa was never a prominent belief in our household but after watching a Miracle on 34th Street and seeing Mrs. Claus earlier that day I was determined to meet Santa. I waited in line patiently with my big sister and mother for an hour when finally it was my turn.
However when I reached the large red velvet throne and saw a very miserly looking Santa sitting in his chair I burst into tears. My mother was quite baffled by my reaction and quite frankly so was I. All I knew was there was something quite strange about this Santa and I was quite afraid of him. Santa tried to put me on his lap by now I was sobbing. I would agreed to sit on his lap if my sister, who was “too old” to sit on Santa’s lap went with me. Tears were still streaming down my face as I reached out to Mrs. Claus who was now comforting me.
When Mrs. Claus asked why I was crying, all I could utter was that he was “scary and not Edmund Gwenn”. Mrs. Claus asked who Edmund Gwenn was and I explained that he was Santa in Miracle on 34th. We left the mall that day my dreams shattered, that Edmund Gwenn was indeed dead and in my mind that meant Santa was dead too.
A few weeks had passed and I was relatively over the “incident”. It was Christmas Eve when my mother opened the local newspaper and read that the mall Santa was arrested for embezzlement. And he was to be replaced with someone who looked just like Edmund Gwenn. Upon hearing this news I reveled in the fact that I was correct on all accounts. The first being that mall Santa was indeed bad and that Edmund Gwenn was indeed the real Santa.
I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and I hope you too have met the real Santa.
Until next time I remain as always respectfully,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell
(I in no way own the above image I found it on the internet and I believe the artist may be Marie (Mizzi) Wunsch (1862 – 1898, German)
“Happy, happy Christmas, that can win us back to the delusions of our childhood days, recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth, and transport the traveler back to his own fireside and quiet home!” ~ Charles Dickens
Mr. Dickens always had a way with words, and knew how to convey ideas in the most poetic, romantic and at times heart wrenching of ways. It is no different with the above quote. Christmas is a time filled with love, peace and sentiment. So as we are now in the Christmas season let us not ignore the idealistic ways of Christmases past. Especially in a time such as this let us embrace the old cliché, romanticized and idealistic ways of the past. I believe in learning from past literary geniuses such as Charles Dickens, for sometimes the old ways really are the best ways. As we reflect on this season I hope we can all remember the true reason for the season.
Until next time when I continue with literary talk I remain as always respectfully,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell
(I in no way own the above image I found it on the internet)
Do you ever have “one of those days” where everything goes wrong; perhaps it has been “one of those years?” You perhaps are unlucky in love? Nothing went the way it should at the office? Fail a school project? Or have you just had a day where it feels like your entire world is crumbling beneath you. Without exception one or all of the above at some time has touched my life. And in truth I have been having “one of those months”.
As the months of holidays, have been and are rapidly approaching I am constantly reminded of departed, friends, family members, lost loves etc. For if anything tragic happens in the life of my family and myself it seems to be always around the holiday season. With years of tragedy hanging a pall over my Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years, I like any normal person can have a tendency to become a little morose during upcoming months. It is as if I hold my breath and sit and wait till March until I feel as though I can breathe once again.
It was just such a day yesterday when I was fretting over work, life, sweethearts and then it happened all of a sudden. You see it went something like this:
“Once Upon a Time, Adam Levine came to my rescue. Yes you read that correctly Adam Levine that well-known “rock star” and coach on the ever-popular show “The Voice”. It was a magical moment until I realized that it wasn’t really Mr. Mc Dreamy Adam Levine it was instead his Doppelganger (as much as I do not like to use that sensationalized term, it seems to fit in this instance). It was about 7 o’clock and I had just finished a long day at the office unfortunately it was not the end of the day for me. Before I could retire for the evening I had quite a few errands to run. Just as I started pumping gas into the car the heavens opened up and the rain began pouring down simply ruining my curls. The drudgery of the day began with a late start that morning then at the office was complaint after complaint from clients tale of woe of why they couldn’t do one thing or another. Now I was ready to go home and instead I was drenched and miserable, that is until one person went out of his way to help me. After pumping my gas I jumped into my car and waited to pull out onto a busy highway, when I noticed something very odd. It was a large silver car and it kept inching its way up the street until coming to a complete stop in front of my car. I looked over at the driver of the car and my heart skipped a few beats when I saw those big blue Adam Levine-esque eyes. At first I thought Mr. Mc Dreamy was just waiting to pull into the parking lot when I noticed he was waiving me on. Mr. Mc Dreamy was not waiting to pull in to the parking lot he was blocking traffic to let me safely pass.
It was at that moment I realized how foolish I was being. Here I was sitting around thinking about my woes, and as if this look-alike knew of my stress he aided me in getting home. Sometimes people never realize how one simple act can help to alleviate the stress of another. After I pulled off I saw my mysterious stranger pull away…. Maybe something good will come with the close of this year and the beginning of next.
Until next time when I return to Literary talk,
I remain as always Respectfully,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell
(I in no way own this image I found it on the internet)
Do you ever notice how at holiday times there are always a ton of accidents, and quite frankly mean people? It is as if they are in such a hurry to get somewhere to spread ‘good cheer and be merry’ that they do not care who or how they disrupt everyone who come into their paths and imposing their anxiety on others. It was hardly yet Thanksgiving Day and that is exactly what I experienced, until, I saw two cats.
Yes you read that correctly two cats. I will often watch these cats play on the street while I drink my morning cup of tea and ready myself for the day. They are often found playing; chasing each other, but one thing that always strikes me as odd in their behavior is their obsession with this one tree. Everyday it is the same they come to the tree dropping in front of it a dead mouse or some sort of prized possession, which only cats seem to understand. Typically these cats can only be found playing outside their tree in the morning in the evenings you always see them looking out the big bay window of their home while they wait for their owner to feed them. However last night, Thanksgiving eve, I noticed on my drive home from work I saw something very unusual. I saw a middle-aged woman sitting in front of the cats favorite tree weeping with each cat sitting beside her seemingly echoing her sentiments. Seeing the distressed woman I pulled into my driveway and walked back down my drive to see if there was anything I could do for this poor woman. As I spoke with her I learned that this was her husbands tree, he had passed away. The two cats were very fond of her husband; he rescued them from that very tree when they were kittens. He had convinced his wife to let him keep the kittens, and from that day on he had a special bond with these two, now very large cats. The three of them went everywhere together they were inseparable. Her husband after a few years became very sick and after his passing the wife noticed the cats would everyday go to the tree where he rescued them. Bringing the tree special gifts only a cat could give.
You see for a cat to bond with a human is a very special and unusual thing, it is something that lasts and that stands the test of time. So as homage these cats say thank you to their human by bringing gifts to the tree where they were first found. The woman’s husband died two Thanksgiving eve’s past. Each year the woman goes outside to the old tree per the last instructions of her late husband to “remember the Thanksgiving Eve when I brought home our two friends, for they will be a comfort and a reminder of how God gives us joy in the smallest of packages”. So each year on the night before Thanksgiving the woman goes to the old tree to say her thanks to God for bringing her, her husband and her cats. After all as Charles Dickens points out “What greater gift than the love of a cat?”
Though this may seem like a sad story, it is important to see that this is not a story filled with tears but a story filled with love and Thankfulness. Two animals learned to love and have a home with a compassionate couple, and from these animals the couple learned what it means to have unconditional love and to treasure every moment they had together. For as we are taught God’s greatest Commandment is Love. And isn’t thankfulness, in a way an expression of that love?
I pray that for your Holiday that despite this year’s chaos and disappointment that you can find even one thing to be at peace, joyous and thankful for.
Until next time when I return to more Literary talk I remain as always,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell
(I in no way own the above image I found it on the internet. I also have not in anyway created the below recipe, the credit for the recipe can be found the body of the following blog)
It is that time of year when we begin to start having parties and dinners to celebrate the holidays and time with our friends and family! And to “kick” the festivities off is none other then my favorite Holiday Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving in my family is a time to come together and give thanks to our God the Creator, and to focus on his blessings and to separate out all of the year’s failures and shortcomings. It is also a time to gorge yourself with your cousins on as many things as you possibly can. What does all this mean? Well coming from a very large family, it is important to bring either a main dish or at least an appetizer. This can be agonizing task especially when you want to make something that will please everyone. So if you come from a large family or are spending time with friends or if you really just want to eat something yummy please see the following recipe courtesy of the New York Times: http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1017797-pumpkin-bread-with-brown-butter-and-bourbon?smid=fb-nytimes&smtyp=cur:
“Pumpkin Bread With Brown Butter and Bourbon
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
- ¼ cup bourbon (or use water or apple cider)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 1 ¾ cups pumpkin purée, homemade or canned (1 15-ounce can)
- 4 eggs
- ½ cup olive or other oil (such as canola)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 ¾ cups light brown sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
- Nutritional Information
- Nutritional analysis per serving (14 servings) 270 calories; 8 grams fat; 4 grams saturated fat; 0 grams trans fat; 2 grams monounsaturated fat; 0 grams polyunsaturated fat; 40 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams dietary fiber; 18 grams sugars; 5 grams protein; 70 milligrams cholesterol; 360 milligrams sodium
- Note: The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice. Powered by Edamam
- Heat oven to 350 degrees and arrange a rack in the center. Grease the insides of two 8-inch loaf pans with butter or line with parchment paper.
- In a large skillet, melt 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium and cook until the frothy white milk solids sink to the bottom of the pan and turn a fragrant, nutty brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Brown butter can burn quickly, so watch it carefully. (A tip: You will know your brown butter is almost ready when the frantic sound of bubbling begins to die down, so use your ears as well as your eyes and nose.)
- In a glass liquid measuring cup, combine bourbon and vanilla. Add water until you reach the 2/3 cup mark. In a large bowl, whisk together bourbon mixture, pumpkin purée, eggs and oil. With a spatula, scrape all the brown butter from the skillet into the pumpkin mixture and stir to combine.
- In another large bowl, whisk together all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, brown sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cardamom. Pour liquid ingredients into dry ingredients and stir to combine.
- Divide batter between the two greased loaf pans. Place them on a rimmed baking sheet and transfer to oven. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until a tester or toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Allow bread to cool completely before removing from pan.”
***Now a side note to all my Gluten Free Readers out there: I believe this recipe can be easily made Gluten Free by substituting the wheat flour for Gluten free flour and adding about a teaspoon of xanthan gum.
Until next time when we return to more Holiday fun and Literary talk
I remain respectfully,
Cheyenne E. Mitchell