Saturday 20 February 2010

Saturday morning thoughts . . .

I was thinking yesterday. Oak Cottage is the one place in my life that I have lived the longest. As a child of a military man, I moved several times when I was growing up, and as the wife of a military man, it was pretty much the same story. I may have spent long periods of time in one province, but always in several different locations. I suppose that makes me somewhat of a gypsy at heart . . .

Back in the early days of my marriage to my ex, we had occasion to visit a place that I had lived in for quite a long time as a child (5 years) called Gimli, a few hours north of Winnipeg in Manitoba. It had been about ten years since I had lived there and I can remember being very excited when I knew that I was going to be able to go back and see it.

I ended up being quite disappointed though . . . Everything that had seemed so large when I was a child, seemed to be so small when revisited . . . Gone were the familiar haunts and buildings of my childhood memories . . . everything had changed so very much. It was no longer the place that I had visited ofttimes in my mind . . . the place of all those golden reminiscence's . . . it was almost depressing . . .

I suppose that's a bit like life. Life is filled with constant changes . . . changes that we sometimes feel ill at ease with, things that may depress us from time to time, things that challenge our inner selves and our families . . .

But isn't it nice to know that each one of have a constant in our lives, something very special that never changes. God and His son Jesus Christ do not change. They are the same today as yesterday and will be the same tomorrow. They encourage us to face up to the changes we all have to experience . . . They give us the strength to cope with all the slings and arrows life throws at us from time to time . . . and They help to carry us when we can no longer carry ourselves. Their love is the same as it has always been . . . and will remain constant . . . forever.

What a wonderful comfort in an ever changing world.

I baked Todd a tasty crumb cake the other day. I can't tell you how many times I have baked this cake in my lifetime. It is a recipe that I got from a wonderful old friend many years ago, when I was a young bride and mum, and she a great mentor and help, and support to me as a young woman far away from family and my own mum. She was quite a bit older than myself and I always looked up to her in a great many ways. She was a great cook and shared a lot of her delicious recipes with me and her hints and tips as well. I hope to have a chance to visit with her, if only for a short, next summer when I go home to Canada on my holidays.

This is a really tasty cake. Simple and easy, and quite delicious! You can have it as a dessert, with some ice cream or whipped cream . . . or you can have it as a brunch or coffee cake along with your favourite hot beverage. It's also the perfect thing to share with a friend.

*Leona's Crumb Cake*
Makes one 9 inch square cake
Printable Recipe

Delicious cake that is fabulous as a dessert, served warm with some ice cream on the side, or as a great brunchtime coffee cake!

2 cups light brown sugar (packed)
2 cups sifted all purpose flour
1/2 cup butter
1 egg
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup of sour milk or buttermilk
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F. Butter and flour a 9 inch square baking pan. Set aside.

Combine the brown sugar, flour and butter in a large bowl, rubbing in the butter until the mixture is crumbly. Remove 1 cup of the crumbs and set aside for later.

Beat the eg lightly and add to the remaining crumbs. Dissolve the soda in the milk and then add along with the salt, and vanilla. Beat the mixture only until smooth. Spread into the prepared baking pan. Sprinkle the reserved crumbs evenly over top. Sprinkle lightly with cinnamon.

Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Cool in pan on a rack. Cut into squares to serve.

Chicken Cacciatore is on the menu over on The English Kitchen today.


  1. I adore crumbcakes, Marie--this recipe looks terrific!

    Love your thoughts today--you always share the most beautiful, meaningful things. Thank-you.

    I sure hope you're having a wonderful Saturday morning so's still Friday here...barely! My youngest daughter Annie has a friend over for the night, so who knows when Mommy gets to go to bed?! Oh, well! They're having fun!

    Much love to you, as always, my friend! Talk to you again tomorrow!

  2. Thank you for sharing your beautiful thoughts, Marie. I need to hear this for some encouragement. In 17 years of marriage, we've live in almost 30 houses already. It looks like we need to move again as husband and I finally made a decision to start looking for a smaller house to rent within the neighborhood. Our recent house is too big for us now that our son is soon leaving for college and we also got another building (our community library/learning center) to manage.
    Your post made my heart be still before our God. Thank you.

  3. What a lovely looking recipe.........and we can't have any! I / we are getting a bit naughty and Keith is screeching about having (visibly) gained so much weight since he retired. I am enjoying - rather too much - feeding him the wonderful stuff there wasn't time to mess about with before. So we're back to plain and simple just for a few day until he gets the hang of it!

    You're right about the disappointmernt of going back. You can't go back, only forward, but it's OK because with Jesus there to catch you, even a stumble along life's way won't hurt too much.

    Thinking of you with love, x

  4. Such a shame that your old town didn't look the same, perhaps it's right when they say you should never go back.

    This cake looks right up my street Marie, I can see me making this when I next have company, it would be too much of a temptation if it was just for Peter and myself!
    Hope you, Todd and Jess are well. xxx

  5. the pictures here are amazing! And your thoughts inspiring and heart warming as always.

  6. Life is full of changes and knowing that we have One constant in our lives is a very good thing. No matter what may come we can go on with the knowledge that we are never alone or without help too. The crumb cake looks so yummy. I love them. I do hope your Saturday is a wonderful one.

  7. I, too, have lived longer in my current home than any where else. I actually had a bit of "wander lust" last year until I realized that it was just my being so used to moving I have settled in for what I hope is the "long haul".
    Beautiful post!

  8. I'm very opposite you in that I've lived in the same small community for my entire life thus far! I don't have somewhere to go back to... but I do have things that I've gone back to- and friendships that I've gone back to only to remember my reasons for leaving them behind.

    I'm enjoying a piece of your crumb cake right now! Hubby said it was good enough to lick the plate! Thanks for helping me earn some brownie points today!

  9. I think it is really hard to revisit a place and see it with a new or changed perspective. The sequel is never quite as good as the original. I think it also applies to areas you visit on vacation. Sometimes if we find a place that is just fantastic and our experience is magical, J & I are reluctant to return as we just want to preserve those fabulous memories as they were. It is even more so with homes.

    It is wonderful to know that amidst all the changing things about this life that we do have an anchor that never moves in Heavenly Father and Jesus.

    I hope you will be at Oak Cottage for a long time, Marie. You seem to love it there.

    XOXO Bon

  10. it is so wonderful to know that Christ will ALWAYS be there for us, no matter what. He is truly constant and ever there for us. thank you for reminding me of that today:)

  11. What you say is so true. Nothing is quite the same as we remember from our childhood. I have had that same experience.

    I was hoping that I would find you on line tonight and we could have a little chat. It seems like weeks have passed since I was making a comment on your blog yesterday morning and Dathan called to tell me Lynell was so sick. I want to jump in the car and go to her bedside but John thinks I am over reacting. Fathers don't always understand a mother's heart.
    She is better today so I got to talk to her. That was a relief. Even though her voice sounds sick at least she was well enough to talk today. Of course she doesn't want me to worry so she paints the picture as rosy as possible...however since I have been there and done that I can see through her rosy efforts. However, she was able to eat soup today and keep it down...and she was able to be out of bed for a little while so she is definately better than yesterday. I know that you will keep her in your prayers. Please put her name in your temple too.

    I think I will make your crumb cake for dessert tomorrow. I feel so wiped out that I need something easy and that looks good to me.

    I send love, Lura

  12. I love your blog - first time here. Your post was exactly what I needed today - Thank you :)


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