Blog & Bake- This afternoon has been a
juggling act between these two agenda items, since tomorrow a family of 5 is
coming for afternoon tea thus entailing a fair amount of preparation today, as there is very little extra prep time on a Sunday.

     But,
as often seems to happen I am getting ahead of myself and so will return to the
beginning of the week: –

Monday, as previously noted, was our
monthly Day Camp Committee meeting. Nearly everyone was able to attend, which
was just great. After a dinner of Borscht, Homemade Bagels, Cream cheese and
Apple Strudel, we were treated to a “sneak peak” video of the puppets that
Anna is assembling for the “Follow the Leader” Slideshow. We were all really
excited to see them coming together. Anna will be our December “Wednesday Words” guest blogger and I know she will be sharing more about the puppets
then, so watch for her Post!

At the actual meeting we also discussed the
recording of the soundtrack, which Josiah will be organizing, hopefully by
March. We were able to sort out the “problem’ which had arisen in that Josiah
and Alicia’s wedding is now scheduled for the same date as our Spring Coffee
House. Josiah himself suggested we hold the Coffee House on the Friday evening
and make sure that Youth Groups who meet on Fridays will make it a special “Group
“ activity. After much emailing and phoning back and forth, it has all worked
out so that is our new plan. LOTS more reminders of this event in months to
come!-FRIDAY, May 9th.

  On
Tuesday I began follow-up work from the meeting (including the above) as well
as pulling together content for CTM’s Christmas Networks newsletter. That same
morning brought a very sad email from Avery to tell us that Steve had died,
earlier that day, this news has thrown a pall of grief over our church community.
  Wednesday was supposed to be a “Wednesday Words” day,but a number of circumstances conspired to delay the Post until yesterday. Do read it.

 
Thursday morning I met with Jill (and Emma and Owen!) to discuss
committee business. Jill is now working part-time at her church as a Youth Ministry
Coordinator and has decided she needs to take a short sabbatical from our
meetings while she juggles work and family. On the bright side she is still
eager to continue preparing Program Chapters and helping out at events etc. So
we are planning to meet regularly over morning coffee (and babies, animals and
knitting!!) so that she can be kept in the loop.

     There have been a couple of hopeful responses to my reminder sent out to
prospective host churches but I suspect it will require a bit more badgering
before any applications begin to arrive.

  It
looks as if the time has come to exchange my rake for a snow shovel, which
means that the gardening season is really over. Early in the week there was a
fare bit of extra clean up to do following the departure of the brick masons
And their scaffolding, which was not picked up until Thursday, but the driveway
looks pretty clean now, all ready for the arrival of the first snow (forecast
for tomorrow!!)

   With
less outdoor work, sewing is back on my schedule and this week saw the completion
of various Christmas gifts, including some really cute overalls for one of my Godsons,
a velvet scarf for a friend and new seat cushions for the recently refurbished
wicker armchairs. Malachi’s birthday hat also got wrapped  in a special origami Viking longboat, ready to transport to church tomorrow.

  
 A
fresh batch of fabric brooches is under construction; however,since the coming
week includes the “Changing of the Decorations” for Advent and Christmas all
other projects will be taking a back seat until that major overhaul is
completed.

  Of course Monday evening there will be
“Christmas Crafts” with Matthew and Tuesday evening is the CTM Board meeting so
I cannot exactly turn the house upside-down until Wednesday but all sorts of
work can begin to happen behind the scenes.

  Coming full circle back to today…… as
mentioned I am also baking for tomorrow’s tea!

   So will just close off with the Apple Strudel recipe and start mixing up a chocolate cake.

                                             
Apple Strudel

½ pkg. filo pastry                                


4 cups peel and thinly sliced apples

2tbsp finely chopped candied ginger

½ cup brown sugar

½ cup raisins

½ cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped

½  tsp.
cinnamon

½ tsp. mace

1Tbsp cornstarch

½ cup melted butter or margarine

¼ cup fresh breadcrumbs

In a large bowl combine the apples, ginger,
raisins, nuts, sugar, cornstarch and spices.

On a clean flat surface lay out one sheet
of filo, brush with butter and sprinkle with a few crumbs. Keep other sheets
covered with a damp tea towel so they do not dry out).

Continue layering sheets; until all are
used then pile the filling in a long mound 3” from one short end of the pastry.
Fold the sides over the filling and roll the strudel firmly, lengthwise.
Carefully transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet and brush with remaining
butter.

Bake in a preheated 375F. oven for 45-55mins.
Cool at least 30 mins. before serving.

Serve in thick slices, accompanied by
whipped cream. If desired. Serves 6-8.