Mennonite Girls Can Cook

M is for the Mennonite Girls Can Cook! I am one of the ten girls who have a blog we collaborate on to post a recipe a day and a devotional on Sundays. That blog is called Mennonite Girls Can Cook. We also have two published cook books, Mennonite Girls Can Cook and Mennonite Girls Can Cook Celebrations. Both of these books are available on Amazon.

Canada-Tea 21

Anneliese, Judy, Lovella, Kathy, Bev, Betty, Ellen, Julie, Charlotte, and Marg.

Sometimes my meme buddies think that MGCC is my blog and all the recipes are mine because of my blogger comment link that will take you straight to MGCC.  If your blog has the (name/url) option to click on when I comment everything works great for memes because I can put in the url that will take you straight to my ABC Wednesday post, etc.  My personal blog is The Happy Wonderer, ellen b. but blogger/google has hijacked me and will send you straight to the MGCC blog if you click on my comment name when I don’t have another option in commenting. Does that make sense? Enough of that…back to the Mennonite Girls.

In 2010 all ten of us got together for the very first time to sign the contract for our first cookbook. Nine Canadians and one American, me. The nine Canadians hail from Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Winnipeg and Steinbach.

Here we are with our first cookbook in hand. It’s easy for me to get together with the girls from British Columbia and we cherish the few times all 10 of us can be together since Betty and Charlotte are over 2200 miles away from us. Along our cookbook journey we’ve had some fun book signings at farm markets, 10,000 Villages, bookstores and more…

Barnes and Noble in Bellingham and Ten Thousand Villages in Vancouver.

We’ve also done cooking demonstrations at the West Coast Women’s Show, Lepp Farm Market, Mennonite Relief Sales and on Global T.V.

In July of 2012 we signed a contract for our second book “Celebrations” which would be released in Spring of 2013.

Since this book was first published the cover has changed.

IMGP0322The West Coast girls traveled to Manitoba for book signings at several locations around Winnipeg and Steinbach so Charlotte and Betty were our hostesses for this great trip. I drove up to Abbotsford, B.C. to hop on a plane with the west coast girls for this trip to Winnipeg.

2014-03-26 paska class10I never dreamed blogging would bring this whole new world of Mennonites and Cookbooks into my life. This journey started with me contributing some recipes to the newly formed Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog that was inspired by a Paska Post on Lovella’s blog. Because the girls and I have family recipes that are very similar I was invited to be one of the contributors on the newly formed Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog even though I am not Mennonite. The ten of us remained faithful to the blog and soon a publisher came knocking at our door. Beyond publishing and blogging we have formed lifetime friendships with each other. The girls call me their adopted American cousin.

It’s not just the girls who enjoy our times together. Our husbands get to come along for the ride, too. We get together for events that have nothing to do with our cooking blog, too, but there is always good food to be eaten whenever we gather together!!

All this fun has not stopped yet because in August we will be published again with a smaller Devotional book with some recipes included.

I’m linking up to ABC Wednesday started by Mrs. Nesbitt and carried on by the masterful Roger and the ABC team. Thank you!

Almost Fully Bloomed…

Our hydrangea is finally showing us it’s color. Soon it will be fully bloomed.

I made 2 trips to Canada this past week. My first trip was full with a reunion of the girls from Mennonite Girls Can Cook. It is rare that the 10 of us can all be together but we were able to pull it off on Wednesday of last week. We enjoyed a full day together with great food and fellowship. Tuesday and Thursday sandwiched all 10 of us together on Wednesday with smaller gatherings. Hearty slices of time with a wonderful filling in between!

Fun little gifts kept coming out at our different gatherings. Here are the gifts I brought home across the line…

Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul. Proverbs 16:24

Friends are the flowers in the garden of life…

This description for this gift made me smile!

A fun basket of treats on my bed from my hostess Marg. Marg brought all of us a special treat from St. Petersburg, beautifully woven napkins. My gift to the girls was not confiscated at the Border…

Bags filled with lavender. I’ll be staying in the U.S.A. this week but am looking forward to a soccer game with the English Premier team Chelsea vs. the Seattle Sounders on Wednesday.

I’m linking up with Mary for Mosaic Monday.

Minter Gardens ~

…my finale post from the beautiful Fraser Valley and Mennonite Girls Can Cook Summit!


Bev and I arrived to Minter Gardens in style in her cute little Bug!


We started with brunch at the Trillium Restaurant.

















So what makes it easy for 10 women all together for the first time ever to be relaxed and enjoy each other? I think it begins with our  faith in God, our savior Jesus Christ, our common comfort food experience, our heritage, and our openness to new adventures. I am aware of what a gift it is to have made this wonderful connection with these beautiful girls.

So this post wraps up my posts of my Mennonite Girls Summit. Till the next time…

Photobucket replaced all my photos with ugly black and grey boxes and they are holding my photos hostage until I pay them lots of money. I’m slowly going through all my posts and trying to clean them up and replacing some photos. Such a bother.

Short Week Favorites…

When the ole girl parties downtown on Thursday night her Friday post comes late to the table! Never-the-less the party must go on…

Thank you to Susanne for reminding us to take a look back and see the favorites that came our way since last Friday.

1. My number one favorite was spending Dear’s birthday with our son Josh in downtown Seattle. We met Josh at a Park n Ride and then drove together to Seattle. We had dinner at the Wild Ginger Restaurant and then headed to Qwest field for the Seattle Sounders F.C. game against Real Salt Lake. It was fun spending the evening with our first-born. On Saturday we are going to have a family birthday celebration with Josh, Laura, and Katie.


It’s truly a blessing from God for me to be married to this man!

2. I got 2 new books in the mail this week. So for my #2 favorite I wanted to share my friend Sandy Coughlin’s new book with you. Sandy is a blogger at the Reluctant Entertainer and she’s had a book published about simple and gracious hospitality. It is well written with great ideas on entertaining that won’t break your budget. There are lots of recipes in the book, too. This would make a creative Bridal Shower gift! I ordered my copy from Amazon but you can click over to her blog and order it there, too. She’ll also sign a copy if you order it from her. You won’t be disappointed with the reluctant entertainerevery woman’s guide to simple and gracious hospitality

3. Speaking of books, I also ordered the new book in the Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter series by Susan Wittig Albert, The Tale of Oat Cake Crag. I really enjoy these mysteries surrounding Hill Top Farm. I’m looking forward to reading this new book.

4. I bought some granola that was good for you but didn’t taste good to me so I came up with a cookie recipe using it. It’s fabulous in the cookies. I’ll share the recipe later this month on the Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog. I’m calling them Granola Chews.

5. And last but not least I’m still savoring and remembering with contentment and joy my 3 days in Canada with these Mennonite Girls that cook!


So what have you been up to and what are some of your favorites?

Have a great weekend and NEVER FORGET!

Photobucket replaced all my photos with ugly black and grey boxes and they are holding my photos hostage until I pay them lots of money. I’m slowly going through all my posts and trying to clean them up and replacing some photos. Such a bother.

Great Is Thy Faithfulness ~ Hymn


Great Is Thy Faithfulness

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not;
As Thou hast been, Thou forever will be.


Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.


Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!


Words: Thomas O. Chisholm, 1923

During our Mennonite Girls Can Cook Summit we enjoyed some hymn singing together. We sang this great hymn and Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow before each of our meals. We found out that 9 out of 10 of us were altos!

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

Words: Thomas Ken, 1674

Oh Canada!

Growing up I was immersed in a Russian Community that used cousin, aunt and uncle loosely. We always had more “relatives” then a proper genealogy record would prove. I just inherited 9 girl cousins from Canada. Our cousin connection comes from our love for each other, similar upbringing, blogging, and recipes that our ancestors brought out of Russia and Germany. I will be sharing the wonderful bonding experiences we had during our 3 days together soon.


Here are the Mennonite Girls (MGCC) minus me and I now know first hand they really can cook! Starting in the back, Judy from My Front Porch, Marg from Home Again, Lovella from What Matters Most, Julie from Pearls in A Nutshell, Betty,  Anneliese from For Everything a Season, Bev from Kaleidoscopes, Kathy, and Charlotte.

Here’s the same photo with me in it. I borrowed it from one of my cousins who happened to post this same photo spot on her blog. Thanks Judy!

Thank you girls for all the good food, laughter, prayers, and fun we had! Till we meet again…

Photobucket replaced all my photos with ugly black and grey boxes and they are holding my photos hostage until I pay them lots of money. I’m slowly going through all my posts and trying to clean them up and replacing some photos. Such a bother.