June 28, 2019


tongue impressor

By Martha L Shaw – © 2019

No one can get Joy by merely asking for it. It is one of the ripest fruits of the Christian life, and, like all fruits, must be grown” Henry Drummond




October 22, 2018

No matter how hard a lemon

may try to disguise itself as an apple,

The Gardener will know the truth.

Sprinkling sugar on the surface

will not make sweet that which is not.

By Martha L Shaw – ©2018


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July 6, 2016

OKAY!  Forbidden fruit!  Why do we still fall for the foolish lies? The apple holds no wisdom nor any less worms!   The high we get is an EGO TRIP!  I prefer the journey with Jesus over THAT trip!  JOIN US?



Blueberry Jam Recipe – In Time For Breakfast!

August 2, 2013

Blueberry jam – just enough and no scientific gadgets needed!

Get out a skillet, pour in 3 heaping cups of blueberries and 3/4 cup of sugar.

Have clear jar(s) ready. This will make about a cup or slightly more depending on how thick you want it. Have a wooden spoon and potato masher ready.

Begin on low to medium heat and stir continually until blended and sugar melts. Mash the berries to release juices, then increase the heat to maintain a low boil. Stir constantly to reduce splashing and keep jam from burning. In less than 30 minutes you’re done! You will notice as you stir that it is becoming thicker and that as you drag the spoon across “the red sea parts” so to speak. I like it really thick and so ended up with a full cup. You might get more if you want a thinner jam. If you’re an early riser you can have this done in the morning and cooled in time for sleepy heads to enjoy on biscuits or toast! It’ll easily keep in the refrigerator for 4 weeks or so, but I doubt it’ll last near that long! You may easily double the recipe.If you’re a newby to jam, you’ll think your skillet is way too big, but you want a lot of bottom surface since it’ll reduce better that way! If some sticks on, next time stir more and perhaps a slightly slower boil – BUT DO NOT SCRAPE OFF THE STUCK ON PART.


January 13, 2013

This sounds sooooo good!

Fresh Eating

Katie:  After realizing how many artificial ingredients and how much sugar (8 grams per serving!) were in the low-fat salad dressing I’d been using, I decided to make my own dressing.  I used this recipe from Cooking Light, which was super quick to make.  I ended up with a delicious and healthier dressing that tastes great, especially with spinach.  Since it was so easy to make, I think I’ll definitely experiment with other homemade dressing in the future!

Strawberry Salad Dressing  (from Cooking Light)

  • 2 cups whole strawberries
  • 1/3 cup champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Blend everything in a blender or food processor.  It’s that simple!

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Berries and Cream Tea Cake

November 26, 2012

Many of you expressed a liking for my blueberry tea cake recipe and this one is just as “last minute” and offers lots of variety in presentation.

The recipe is the same as the Last Minute Blueberry Tea Cake  but rather than two packages of Martha White blueberry muffin mix, I used two of the strawberry muffin variety.  Everything else was exactly the same even the handfuls of blueberries.

In serving it, I spooned some strawberry jam (preserves would also work) in a microwave safe dish and melted it, then spooned it over top of a piece of cake, then I used low-fat whipped cream, yes the kind in the can, and added plenty of that.  This can  be enjoyed just straight from the oven warm or cool, but treating yourself to a fruit drizzle either as much as I did or a smaller amount, and a bit of whipped topping . . . yum.  Low sugar varieties of the jam and topping work just fine and since everything used is likely to be on a pantry shelf . . . great for last-minute needs or cravings. It took no time at all to mix  – less than 30 minutes from idea to eating – as the mix is just the package and milk and yes if I was not clear enough, I added a couple handfuls of blueberries right from the freezer.  Yum.


November 21, 2012

The rest of the story:  When we were kids, my sister worked in a bakery with a counter and stools where folks could have coffee and eat their freshly baked muffins.  It was a family owned place and their blueberry muffins were awesome.  My sister came home one day all smiles because she knew their secret.  They bought packaged muffin mix and simply added fresh blueberries then after putting the batter into the muffin pan; they topped each with sugar and baked them.  That was a long time ago and it came to me as I considered what to make for a light dessert or breakfast for tomorrow.  Blueberry tea cake was born.

You will need:

2 packages Martha White or Jiffy blueberry muffin mix

1 generous cup of blueberries

2 tablespoons of brown sugar

1 tablespoon of Bisquick baking mix

In mixing bowl prepare muffin mix as package directs, adding the fresh or frozen blueberries.  One cup would have been enough but I didn’t measure and just put in one handful after another until I was happy with it.  Lol  Fold the berries gently, and when blended pour batter into a greased 6 by 9 pan.

In a small dish combine the brown sugar and Bisquick until blended and sprinkle on top of the tea cake.  Bake at 425 for approx 22 minutes until lightly browned and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

This can easily be made from scratch but then it wouldn’t be “last minute” as the name suggests.  I pick up corn muffin mix and blueberry muffin mix when they’re on sale for pennies and they are handy when I need to have a treat in and out of the oven in about 20 minutes or less for those occasions when you have an unexpected guest in for tea, etc.  I also always have berries in the freezer.  Frozen blueberries are a wonderful candy alternative too.  Lol

Martha’s Quick Applesauce Cake

October 29, 2012

My favorite “other” mother, the late Barbara Brosnan from ME made yummy homemade apple sauce and lots of other treats from an abundance of “drops” from the nearby farm.  Drops?  The apples the pickers dropped on the ground or the wind blew from the trees.  They couldn’t be sold at premium prices so a bushel went cheap and Mom B had a whole bushel of kids, not even counting me.  Lol  I’m not she, so I used store bought chunky applesauce for my cake but if you make chunky homemade sauce, oh do use it!  Great for breakfast, with ice cream, or anytime.

Here’s what you need:

2 tablespoons (packed) brown sugar, 1 tablespoon Bisquick – mix together and set aside (topping)

1/3 cup milk

1 egg

½ cup chunky applesauce

2 cups Bisquick

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Beat milk, egg, and applesauce slightly in mixing bowl, blend in 2 cups Bisquick and 2 tablespoons gran sugar, mixing until moist.


Pour into greased  8 x 12 baking pan and sprinkle with reserved topping.


Bake at 400 degrees for approx 22 minutes, until top is golden and tooth pick inserted in center comes out clean.  Yummy served warm with ice cream!


Note:  This is a light and not overly sweet cake which is just my “thing” but you can drizzle a simple confectioners sugar glaze over the top if you like super sweet treats or served after dinner with ice cream, warmed apple sauce, and a dollop of whipped cream . . .

The Apple of His Eye

July 13, 2012

Funny, when I think of the Bible and of apples, I think of the Garden of Eden and a snake and a tree and bad choice . . . but when I did a quick search for the word apple in the Bible I found only positive references. 

Song of Solomon . . .

  • Beloved Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest
  • Strengthen me with raisins, refresh me with apples, for I am faint with love.
  • the fragrance of your breath like apples

That’s just the start.  In many books we read of  “the apple of your eye” and surely one of my favorites among those is “Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings” Psalm 17:7-9  We are the apple of God’s eye.  Think about it.  We know that phrase and it makes us feel good to be the apple of Daddy’s eye . . . that’s the way our Father God wants us to feel in our relationship with Him.  Bring all our troubles to Him.  The sweetness of His love is all we need. 

That being said, when you eat an apple, stop and think of His great love for you and let your heart and soul curl up in Father God’s loving arms knowing you truly are the apple of His eye. 

Got a lot of apples?  How fitting, as He has a lot of love for you.  Here’s an idea you might want to try:

Choose your favorite apple muffin recipe, or if you must you can cheat and buy some from the bakery . . . but it’s not hard to find a simple recipe online and make your own . . . I’m remembering a little nearby restaurant when I was a kid and I loved to order an “Apple Muffin Sundae . . .

First get a muffin.  Here you go:

I made mine by swapping out apples for cranberries in a recipe I had in my file and know what?  Chunky applesauce from the grocery is yummy and if you have it on hand, you will have that sundae I remember from childhood in front of you in a heartbeat.  See, take one of these muffins, split it in half in a dish.  Warm up some chunky applesauce.  Scoop up some nice vanilla ice cream and place it atop the muffin pieces, top it with a few spoonfuls of the warm and chunky sauce, then add a nice dollop of whipped cream.  If you want to be showey, you can sprinkle a bit of cinnamon on top of the whipped cream . . .

What are you waiting for?  Go get a spoon!  Oops.  It tasted so good, I ate it before snapping a photograph!  lol  Try it and with each bite remember you are the apple of God’s eye!

Life’s Too Short NOT To Bake Muffins

July 10, 2012

Life is crazy sometimes.  We rush here and rush there.  Our “list” seems to get longer and longer.  The demands on us keep coming and if we stop a quick second and think about it, we might admit we do it to ourselves.  Ever found yourself saying “how long has that been there?” only to find that what you just noticed has been there a long time but you were too busy rushing to even notice? 

There is more to life than increasing its speed.

– Mohandas K. Gandhi –

Then there’s the subject of diet.  Whether you live alone, are a caregiver of an elderly parent, or have spouse and kids to feed, to please . . . quick meals on the run, unhealthy and packaged food, unhealthy and packaged life . . . keep ’em happy and life goes better.  How’s that working for you?  It wasn’t working for me. 

So, I have slowed down a bit.  I discovered that when I take better care of me, I still get things done.  I get them done BETTER and I feel better.  “They” complain sometimes since “they” have grown accustomed to their unrealistic demands on us being met.  When that doesn’t work so well, they take a different approach, too.  It doesn’t happen over night, but it happens.  Those whom we “give in” to will eventually learn to either live without or take initiative. 

So, in the past month, I’ve taken moments to cook meals I like even though the other member of my household prefers junk food. I’ve added more healthy fruits and veggies, baked more, taken time to read inspirational writing in between my tasks, “stolen” moments for quiet time where I had thought there were none to find . . .  and I’ve gotten everything done anyway.  I’ve also slept well, felt better, and lost weight . . . to name a few.  There are lots of complaints.  Just as I write this I’m getting darting looks from someone who resents my “playing with that thing” instead of their own agenda for my minute or two with you. 

I’m doing what I need to do.  Those who need my care are more than adequately cared for, but I have also realized I need to take care of myself.  So, I will take an extra few minutes in the shower, I’ll play my Christian music, I’ll bake the brownies, I baked home-made muffins for my breakfast.  I will make a spinach pie because I love it!  If others would rather eat a fast food burger, go ahead.  I release you to your choice.  I’m learning to take better care of  me and it’s the right choice to make.  Try it.  It’s hard, but it gets easier.  I think it’s another way to lead by example. 

Meanwhile, have a muffin! 

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