Almond Torte and LilyBug

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“Grace and gratitude are the cornerstones of happiness.” — susan basham

Happy Thanksgiving to my wonderful readers!7758248

As always, I’m grateful for much, including the challenges of this past year that have inspired my personal growth. Although it seems impossible while living it, looking in the rear-view mirror a year later always puts it in proper perspective. And that’s the only reason to look in the rear-view mirror, by the way.

happines-memeThis holiday season, leave the past where it belongs–behind you. Forward is the only right direction for any of us. ~~~~~>>>>>

And so….let’s lighten up and talk about food and adorable babies!

Here’s a recipe that has become a staple in my house — almond torte! Eight ingredients, a springform pan and presto–you have a dessert that travels well and looks beautiful.


Blend: 1-1/2 cups sugar with 1-1/2 sticks CHALLENGE unsalted butter

Add: 1 tsp. almond extract and 1-1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Add: 2 eggs, 1-1/2 cups flour, 1/2 tsp. salt

Butter a 9-inch springform pan, then sprinkle with sugar and sliced almonds. Pour in batter and sprinkle with more almonds. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Dust with powdered sugar when it comes out of oven.



Yummy! And um, I just realized I served it up on a chipped plate…….%*(&^

Below is a video of my little three-year-old cousin Lily (aka LilyBug), who tells us what she’s thankful for this year. We have so many cuties in our family, but Lily reminds me very much of my youngest at that age. Lily’s mom, Meagan, keeps me in stitches with her stories:

Last week Meagan forgot preschool was closed due to an event for the older kids. Lily was quite unhappy and tearfully, said “Now Miss header (Heather) won’t get to see my new boots!” (Yes, she’s one of ours!) Thankful for precious, tiny hearts and how much they mean to all of us!

Enjoy as she tells us she is thankful for her home, and birds and eggs! I couldn’t agree more! (And don’t forget My Little Pony!)  Thank you, Lily, for these reminders.

… thankful for the beauty that surrounds us…….

Beautiful Placerville, CA photo cr: Dana Basham

Beautiful Placerville, CA
photo cr: Dana Basham









Each month or so, a random Subscriber from my list is chosen to win books or related items. The Dievole Olive Oil  from Italy mentioned in my last post goes to new Subscriber Sue Pazur, Michigan! To subscribe, see above and right. 

With a grateful heart,


feature photo cr: Mark Goebel

Let the Christmas decorating begin! Loving owls this year.

Let the Christmas decorating begin! Loving owls this year.

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