What To Do When it’s a Hard Day…

‘D
ear Levi,

I am so glad you asked your Great-Granny to come and help you learn to make biscuits. Your mom posted the recipe on a day when I was struggling with schooling my own two boys, 10, and nearly 7. I put the schoolbooks away and I got out the flour and a bowl and we made biscuits. And we ate them with honey.

And they were delicious. And they smoothed things over. I think we have a new family tradition.

Blessings to you and your family,
Jennifer
Ohio

~~~

and after very wise Jennifer, a note from Lorna who made me laugh

We made Granny’s Tea Biscuits for lunch today, and enjoyed them with a glass of milk each.

That’s a very short sentence. It actually took over two hours!

I printed out the recipe, and compared it to our current one to see how many servings it might make, and which mixing bowl to use. I put the bowl on the countertop.

I read a chapter of The Phantom Tollbooth, and asked questions about it.

Found the biggest cookie sheet and put some butter on it, turned the oven on at 350 degrees. Went back and checked that there was nothing unusual in the oven.

Three cups of flour and half a cup of sugar.

Pause to explain the difference between abstract and concrete, and the degrees between them.

About 2-1/2 Tbsp baking powder. It’s exuberant and defies exact measurement.

Hear the baby waking up. Look at the clock and determine that she cannot wait until I’m done. Change her, and all her clothes – she’s grown, and she’s looking squished with a soggy diaper. Laugh with her as she admires the flowers on her arms when I put on a brand new long sleeve flowery onesie. Fold back the arms of her sleeper so she can still enjoy her flowery wrists underneath.

Sit her in her high chair.

Half a tsp of salt.

Feed the baby the rest of her peaches from earlier, let her burp, and lay her down.

A generous cup of raisins.

Pause to discuss why no rational number will work in a particular equation. Wonder once again what irrational numbers were invented for, and quietly sigh with relief when I’m not asked. Boy rescues baby, who is stuck on her stomach again, and they sit together on the couch.

Frown. Can’t cut the butter in with all those raisins in the way. Check recipe. Didn’t say to add raisins yet. Sift the raisins out. Cut in butter, add the raisins back in.

Explain to startled boy why babies sometimes spit up orange, and help him clean up.

Use our last real egg (from the farmer down the road) and a cup of milk to make the dough. Roll it out, measure to check it’s not too thin. It’s exactly half an inch. Cut out biscuits, watched intently by baby and boy. Re-roll scraps, cut more, and again. Eighteen and a half biscuits.

Into the oven. 18 minutes on the timer.

Warm water, make bottle for baby. (No milk from me for this one, very sad.) Feed baby, allow her to burp, lay her down.

Clean the flour and goop off the countertop. Timer chirps. Biscuits look pale. One more minute. Refill honey squirty bottle, soften butter in microwave, stack plates ready. Biscuits look perfect.

Thundering footsteps. What’s for lunch?

“Ooh Mum, these are good! You should make these again. For dinner.”

They were very good. Exquisite. A real treat.

Rachel sings an I-love-biscuits-with-raisins song, Hannah digs in.

~~

And I smile with Jennifer and Lorna….

Some days just need a real treat. 

In the throes of a fever yesterday… I dreamt of my Granny’s tea biscuits — my life-long comfort food.


Things seem quiet and slow here today, and all tummies seem happily calm… Mama brought over a pot of soup. We’ll just be curling in and recuperating today… 

But I think I know what we’ll be rustling up in the kitchen for us to nibble on while we read, read, read.


Photos: tea Biscuit making
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