We have snow - LOTS of snow! Maybe southwest Ohio didn't receive as much as some areas, but I love the snow we have, more than we've had all winter. This white wonderland would have been fantastic at Christmas time, but oh well. I'll take it now.
I'm tucked inside my cabin today feeling snug and warm and pretending I'm on the Kansas prairie. That's where one of my grandmother's was born and lived until about the age of 10 or 12. I wonder what it was really like back then. I've seen the "Little House on the Prairie" TV series and wonder if it was anything similar to how my grandma lived. I know she told stories of traveling to Ohio in a covered wagon when she was a young girl. When newly married, she and my grandfather settled down in Groveport, Ohio where they farmed and raised a family - my dad and his two brothers. Much has changed since they lived there, but I think the old farmhouse is still standing. If Grandma was still with us, I'd ask her how it was during prairie winters and what her family did when the snow came. Here's a link to the Little House on the Prairie site. The photos I posted were taken from there: http://www.littlehouseontheprairie.com/
Maybe my grandmother and her mama did some of the same things we do today. I love to make homemade soup on days like this. In fact, I think we'll have potato soup for lunch today. Last night, as the snow was falling, I baked chocolate chip cookies, the first I've made since Christmas. I think we were all "cookied" out by the end of the holiday season. The house smells so good when cookies are baking or soup is simmering on the stove. Spouse is outside right now, helping a neighbor clear his driveway. How nice is that? He has the pioneer spirit! I love how the pine trees look all covered with snow and my cats are watching the birds pick seeds from a pan of food I left outside for them.
I might do a little sewing today. I'll get out Grandma's old sewing box and find some buttons to replace the ones lost from a couple shirts, then I'd like to make a doll. She'll be very simple and I'll call her Lulu (Grandma pronounced it Lu-la), after my Kansas grandmother. How I wish I'd been mature enough to ask my grandmother about her life on the Kansas prairie when she was here. Grandma died when I was 15 and I never asked her about her childhood. I so wish I had. Since she's not here to tell me about her life, I'll continue to pretend and simply enjoy this day and be thankful for home and family.
Kady's Cheddar Potato Soup
8 -10 small to medium potatoes - cooked, peeled, and chopped
3 cups milk (I use skimmed milk and if I have it, Carnation fat-free evap. milk)
1/4 cup finely chopped onion (if desired)
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup shredded hot pepper cheese (if you want a little "bite" to the soup)
1/2 tsp. parsley flakes
pinch of each - ground black pepper, chili powder, and paprika
1 cup diced ham (optional)
Cook potatoes, cool them, then peel and chop all but one. Mash the one and add it to the pot with the chopped pieces for thickening. Add onion and cheese. Stir often until cheese is melted. This is where I sometimes add the 1/4 cup of hot pepper cheese for flavor. Add spices and continue stirring over medium heat. Once cheese is melted, turn heat to simmer and add ham if desired. You can simmer the soup in a crockpot (low setting) or on the stove for about 30 minutes until serving time.