If you didn’t go to the Indiana High School/CINCH Rodeo held at the C-Bar-C Arena this past weekend, you missed out on a ridin’, ropin’, good time in the spirit of the Old West! And, I’m just talking about the kids; there was also an open rodeo for the adults who wanted to show the younger generation what they could do.
This is grandson Cooper’s first year in the CINCH program and he has battled his nerves at the last two rodeos; he didn’t have that problem at the first rodeo of the season. Fortunately, he was able to get his Chute Dogging steer down both days of the Cloverdale rodeo. And, he caught his calf in Break-away Roping on Saturday. We’re hoping those successes help him settle down a bit. However, Coop puts a lot of pressure on himself; he’s a perfectionist and has set the high goal of qualifying for the National Finals as a sixth grader.
I left the C-Bar-C grounds around 5:00 on Sunday evening and, because of the high winds, I decided to forgo the interstates in favor of back roads and ordinary highways as my route home. The fall foliage was spectacular, allaying my earlier fears that the drought would leave us with a brown autumn! Since I was heading past the road where I used to live, I couldn’t resist the urge to see if the maple grove behind the house had turned to gold yet. That was one temptation I wish I’d resisted.
Of course, I knew the place had been sold; I just wasn’t prepared to see another family living in MY house! It hurt a lot more than I’d anticipated. I turned around and high-tailed it out of there as fast as I could. I don’t even remember whether the woods had changed color or not. The tears started flowing before I reached 231 and they didn’t stop until I reached Paragon. Finally, I realized that the house had looked well cared for, a couple of horses grazed in the pasture, and the lawn had been mowed. That made me feel better; if I couldn’t live there anymore, I wanted someone to love the place as much as I had. Didn’t I?
I had to admit that I’d been harboring a small hope that, somehow, someday, I would move back there. It wasn’t a rational hope; but, it was a dream I hadn’t wanted to let go. That’s when the phrase, “You can’t go home again” popped into my head. I started to choke up again until I realized that we can’t live life in reverse. I’m sure many of us would turn back the clock, if we could.
Life has only one gear – forward. Like it or not, we have to keep putting one foot in front of the other. The only alternative is to stand still. We can learn from the past, but we have to look and move toward the future. When I thought about Cooper and his friends in the rodeo – how they never give up, even when things aren’t going their way - I decided to let go and let God. After all, He’s holds my future and it’s going to be great!
G.R. came home from school last week raving about apple brownies. I’d never heard of them before and I decided to go in search of a recipe; I found several. We plan to try them all while the children are out of school this week. This one is from an Apple Harvest Festival Cookbook published in the 1970s.
Homemade Apple Brownies
Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup finely chopped apples (about 2 medium)
1 cup chopped nuts
Position one of the oven racks in the center and preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray an 8-inch baking pan with nonstick spray. For easy cleanup, line the pan with foil and spray the foil.
In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon until blended and set aside. In a large bowl beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until creamy and well blended. Add the flour mixture and beat with the mixer on low speed just until combined. Stir in the apples and nuts with a wooden spoon until distributed throughout the batter.
Spread batter evenly in sprayed pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs, about 40 to 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and set the pan on a wire rack. Allow the apple brownies to cool in the pan before cutting and removing from pan.
I have many more recipes for apple brownies which I will share next week.
“And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.” – Matt. 21:22
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