Ten Glorious Years

The Mennonite Girls Can Cook have some announcements. We started our journey together when I was still covering my grey roots and now I’m letting my grey shine. On 6/8/2018, Lovella posted one of the first recipes that appeared on our blog in June of 2008. Here’s that post with our first announcement, Zwieback. Judy posted our last Bread for the Journey on Sunday. On Monday June 11, 2018, Lovella posted Ten Years of Mennonite Girls Can Cook.

I’m putting this post together to help me remember much of what went on with the “girls” the last 10 years with links to some memorable posts from the other “girls”. This will be an ongoing post as I search and find posts to add links to.

When I first met the girls in person in April of 2010. (Lovella)

The Book Arrives (Judy)

Our First Cookbook. (Lovella)

Book Launch (Judy)

A Tribute (Anneliese)

Cooking Classes(Judy)

 

West Coast Women’s show kitchen stage.

Marg and Judy’s epic birthday celebration at Harrison Hot Springs.

Mennonite West Coast event in Fresno, California, where plans begin for our next cookbook.

To Fresno and Back (Judy)

Mini book tour in Bellingham and Vancouver.

Celebrations Book Launch in Chilliwack and Abbotsford.

Winnipeg book signings.

West Coast Women’s Show

Some of the girls traveled by train to spend the day in the Seattle area ending at my home.

Visiting Ellen (Anneliese)

Lepp Farm Market Paska Cooking Class

Lepp Farm Market Christmas Cookie Class

Bread for the Journey Book launch

Indiana and Ohio for the openings of the play using our name.

Post by Anneliese

 

Christmas gatherings over the years.

At Our House seen through Anneliese’s Eyes.

 

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Some of us were able to gather on Monday June 11th in British Columbia to celebrate the end of this chapter in the Mennonite Girls Can Cook’s lives. Thank you to Lovella and her beloved for a wonderful evening reminiscing and doing what we do best, sharing the food we have cooked.

It’s been a great 10 years and I thank my God always when I think of these girls and all I’ve been privileged to experience because of our growing friendship filled with encouragement, laughter, conversation and prayer. This Tenship will continue with my everyday friends.

Anneliese’s Thoughts

 

Announcements, Announcements, Announcements!

The Mennonite Girls Can Cook have some announcements. We started our journey together when I was still covering my grey roots and had a “Bob”. Now I’m letting my grey shine with a shorter more layered cut. I also started this journey 30 pounds lighter. Last Friday, Lovella posted one of the first recipes that appeared on our blog in June of 2008. Here’s that post with our first announcement, Zwieback. Judy posted our last Bread for the Journey on Sunday. On Monday June 11, 2018, Lovella posted Ten Years of Mennonite Girls Can Cook.

I’m working on my own 10 year post which will be full of photos of our memorable events. This is mostly for my benefit so I have everything in chronological order. Last night we had a casual impromptu dinner at Lovella’s home in British Columbia. Seven of the 10 could be there with our husbands. So much to be thankful for. Dear and I stayed the night at an Oxford Suites hotel in Bellingham just across the border from Lovella’s home. We are really pleased with this chain. We’ll head home today with a couple stops along the way.

2016 in Review July-December

2016-07-07 4th and beyond1Fourth of July with family, friends and neighbors.

2016-07-19 Canada new book launch3Book launch for Bread for the Journey at Marg’s home in Chilliwack, B.C.

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2016-08-02 kids weekend1July 30th we received an announcement from Dan and Jamie that they were expecting our first grandchild!

museum book launch6August Book launch celebration at the Heritage Museum in Abbotsford, B.C.

2016-08-25 pump house and homeTravels to Dan and Jamie’s to help with projects in August.

Pictures62Memorial service for our dear friend Dave Dickinson late in August with all of our family.

mohai66August/September visits to Eastern Washington and visits here from cousins.

danjam-home-020October Western Conference clinched and another trip to Eastern Washington where I was able to hear Baby Bayles’ heartbeat, attend a sign making class and see that beautiful rainbow above.

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15036604_1356018304417236_4867337359558403527_nWe found out we are having a little granddaughter!

 

2016-11-27-2nd-t-day2November day trips and wonderful Thanksgiving gatherings with friends and family.

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mgcc-162Early December trip to Canada for our annual MGCC Christmas dinner.

pictures66Our 42nd wedding anniversary meal in La Conner at the Oyster and Thistle a day late but just as good .

recently-updated-001December 11th our Sounders beat Toronto to win their first ever MLS Cup!

15390853_10211460213602920_8728460629010838251_nDowntown Seattle for the MLS Championship parade and celebration with Josh and Laura.  (December 14th)

pictures65Dan and Jamie moved into their new home in weather that ranged from 8 degrees to 22 degrees. Josh flew over to help them move the weekend before Christmas!

mohai67Christmas day with all of our kids and then a trip to La Conner with Katie and Andrew to celebrate Katie’s birthday.

We ended the year with a nice chilly walk and then a Raclette dinner at this old house with dear old friends. Sad to say I forgot to take a photo! Here’s the table set in Husky gold and purple even though our dear Huskies lost to the Crimson Tide after a great run in 2016!

pictures67Today on New Year’s day we managed to put away Christmas decorations and drag the tree out to the yard waste bin. Woohoo! Tomorrow I will enjoy sitting and watching the Rose Bowl Parade and maybe the Rose Bowl game.

Hope that 2017 is having a good start at your house!

Numbers 6: 24-26

The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

Summer Olympics Hodgepodge

HodgepodgebuttonI’m joining Joyce who blogs at From This Side of the Pond for Hodgepodge Wednesday. Joyce comes up with the questions and we come up with some answers. Thanks Joyce! I’m early this week…

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1. Are you watching the Olympics? Your favorite summer Olympic event? I read recently a list of the most iconic Olympic moments in history…what stands out in your mind as a great moment from some past summer Olympic games?

We are catching some of the Olympics. Swimming, Gymnastics and Soccer are my favorite events.

The moment that will always stand out in my mind is watching Dear as a Torch Bearer in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. Because he won the honor to run with the torch it brought the Olympics into our home in a special way.

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2. Have you ever been to Rio? How about the place that started it all-Greece? Have you ever been to any of the Olympic Games in person? Is that something you’d like to do? Have you ever met an Olympian in person?

Never been to Rio or to Greece but I have been to an Olympic event at the 1984 Summer games in California. Our family and some of our extended family were able to attend a rowing event at Lake Casitas in Ventura County.

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3. The ball’s in their court (tennis), cross the finish line (track and field), on target (archery), make a splash (diving), on a roll (gymnastics), out of one’s depth (swimming)…which Olympic-related idiom best applies to your life right now? Explain.

I’m going to go with out of one’s depth as Dear and I are thinking about the fact that he might be retiring earlier than we expected. He’s been unemployed for a couple of months and if nothing happens employment wise by his birthday we’re considering retirement and who knows what all that means! Yikes. We know who holds our future so we aren’t going down the anxious road but we are going down the unknown road.

4. What have you earned a ‘gold medal’ in recently?

My Gold Medal comes to me through blogging and the fact that God plopped me into the Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog through my personal blog and my Russian heritage and family recipes.  I’m one of 10 gals who post on that blog and we have authored two cookbooks, a just released devotional book and unbelievably a play about us will be released the end of September. What? Our author royalties have all gone to help feed widows and orphans and to help provide clean water to families in Kenya.

2015-06-18 Tea in Canada55. What is it (or who is it) that motivates you to eat right, exercise, and do what you can to be healthy?

The mirror motivates me when I don’t let the mirror completely discourage me. It does help to have a partner in the endeavor to eat right and exercise.

van 2 0356. Are you young at heart or an old soul? Explain.

I think I’m young at heart because I still want to try new things and learn new things.

7. It’s National S’mores Day (August 10th)…are you a fan? Will you celebrate with a s’more today?

Not a fan but I can provide the ingredients for anyone who wants them!

8. Insert your own random thought here.

This post made me start singing that song from Sunday School that comes from Acts 3:6, a verse in the Bible.

Silver and Gold have I none/ but such as I have give I thee, /in the name of Jesus Christ/ of Nazereth rise up and walk./ Walking and leaping and praising God./ Walking and leaping and praising God./ In the name of Jesus Christ/ of Nazereth rise up and walk!

The Journey…

Dear and I packed up early on Wednesday morning and headed across the line to Canada.

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We found our way to Central Heights Mennonite Church to attend the Celebration of Life for Kathy’s (one of the Mennonite Girls Can Cook) dear father. After the service Dear and I headed to Bakerview MB church and found the other Mennonite Girls and their spouses for the reception. One of the things we learned about Kathy’s father Helmut during the many tributes expressed about him was that he had the “gift of encouragement” along with other “gifts”. We think our Kathy has received this “gift” and learned a lot about how to share this gift because of her dad. Here’s an email from Kathy’s dad to his kids after he learned to use email in 2015.

“Let’s remember that , ‘Godliness with contentment is great gain.’ We are totally dependent on the Lord for life and breath and the service we are to render to our family members and other folk. One of my challenging verses that JESUS gave us is recorded in Mark 10:45. ‘For the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve and give HIS life as a ransom for many.’ Let us be faithful servants, managing our time, talents and resources well. God help us to be good witnesses for HIS glory. Love you all lots and pray for you daily. Dad/Helmut”

What a treasure to have a legacy of a faithful father to pass on. We know you will miss your dear dad, Kathy, but that you also rejoice because he is home with his savior.

After the reception Dear and I found our way to Anneliese’s home where she and her dear H treated us to a nice dinner before we headed to our next big event.

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We followed H and Anneliese to the Mennonite Heritage Museum in Abbotsford, B.C. where our newly released book, Bread for the Journey, was to be dedicated and launched.

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We were met by two bouquets of flowers lovingly and thoughtfully sent by friends of the MGCC girls. Thank you so much Richard, Dorothy, and Rosella.

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Under watchful eyes Anneliese prepared for the Zwieback demonstration.

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Judy and Lovella’s hubbies maned the parking lot helping our guests find a place to park.

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A wonderful crowd appeared and watched carefully as Anneliese showed her method of making Zwieback. Lovella helped with the narration.

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Each of the seven of us who could be at the museum had our part to play. Some of us read from our family stories and some of us read one of our devotionals.

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I made my confessions and read a brief story about my family’s “Movement” from Russia, to Iran and finally to the U.S.A. I’m not going to lie, I was happy when my “spotlight” moment was done.

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After we were done with our stories and devotionals we had a special treat of music. We were blessed with Father’s Daughter singing “Little is much when God is in it”.  Wonderfully musically talented family.

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Here’s what Lovella had to say about these moments caught in the collage above. “I wanted to read the dedication at the end before Gerry prayed but just couldn’t even get it out.  My heart was so full.  Gerry couldn’t read it because he didn’t have his glasses so he borrowed mine to read.” Lovella was hoping someone captured these moments and Bev’s husband Harv did so I borrowed his photos.

The dedication reads: “We dedicate this book and our royalties to orphans and widows who face each day in need. Our prayer is that they would see the love of Jesus extended through caring hands, one home and one heart at a time.

After reading the dedication with Lovella’s glasses, Gerry prayed a prayer for God’s blessings on our book.

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We signed books for anyone who wanted us to while the great crowd that attended enjoyed coffee and Zwieback.

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We were surprised at the number of people who showed up and also surprised that the museum store was soon sold out of our book.

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At the end of the evening we took some group photos. We always wish the 10 of us could all be together for these special events but miles and life events have a way of keeping some of us away.

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All of our hearts were full from the beautiful blessings we enjoyed on this day in Abbotsford.

Some of the photos in this post were taken by Bev’s husband. Thanks for sharing Bev. Some were taken by my Dear and myself.

Dear and I crossed the border into the USA at 9 pm and were home in bed before midnight. We are generally early to bed people. Today is a day of recuperating for me and I have another confession to make and that is that I am still in my robe and it is the afternoon already! Oops! I running upstairs now to get ready for the rest of the day!

A New Journey…

On Monday the 18th of July nine of the Mennonite Girls and their husbands gathered at Marg and John’s home for dinner because Charlotte and her husband Tony were in British Columbia for a family reunion. It was providential that the author copies of our soon to be released book arrived on Lovella’s doorstep a few days before our scheduled dinner. The only couple missing from our dinner party was Betty and John from Steinbach.

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Marg and Judy got together ahead of our dinner and planned what we would be eating. They decided to ask us to bring dishes that are featured in our new book. The table setting was focused on the theme of our new book with small loaves of bread and jam that Judy made for each of us, stalks of wheat and kernels of wheat on the table.

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Marg and Judy got together ahead of our dinner and planned what we would be eating. They decided to ask us to bring dishes that are featured in our new book. Marg’s John barbecued a beautiful cut of beef for all of us.

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When we were done with dinner we opened the box of books together so we could all see it for the first time.

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Bread for the Journey is a book of devotionals and stories of how our families journeyed (escaped) out of Russia. There are several recipes included, too. The above photo is not my photo and I’m not sure which of the girls took it. Thanks to whoever did (Anneliese?)

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It was fun to get our hands on it and peek inside.

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We strolled out to the wheat field to take some more photos. We thought the wheat was a good photo op for our book called Bread for the Journey.

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We gathered around the fire to enjoy our desserts.

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Our new book is set to be released August 2nd. On August 3rd we are having a book signing at the new Mennonite Heritage Museum in Abbotsford.

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You feed your loved ones. But how do you nourish your soul?

Strengthen your relationship with God. Savor everyday moments. Deepen your faith. In this heartfelt book of meditations for women, the bestselling authors of the Mennonite Girls Can Cook series serve as friends and companions on your spiritual journey. The 90 daily devotionals provide morsels for inspiration and reflection, all drawn from God’s unending promises in Scripture. Interspersed throughout the devotional are favorite recipes, inviting us to extend our tables and share God’s blessing with others.

My Five thankfuls for Five on Friday with Amy and Friday’s Fave Five with Susanne are…

A wonderful gathering of friend’s brought together because of similar life journeys, a delicious meal to share together, a new book to be released with our author royalties again going to help widows and orphans, that Charlotte and Tony could be at our celebration all the way from Manitoba, that our book arrived just in time for the dinner that was planned in honor of Charlotte and Tony being in British Columbia so that we could all see it for the first time together. Lovella sent a book to Betty in Steinbach to open the same time we opened up the box. God is good.

Click over to Mennonite Girls Can Cook to see some more details on our book launch in Abbotsford.