A Story and a Recipe

By Dorothy Johnson


For a brief follow up on last week’s story, I did receive a check for $10 to buy more canned corn beef. That was a definite plus, but honestly if the United States can put a man on the moon, why can’t we have a can of corned beef that any of us can open. Mrs. Bires and I believe that the product is good in special recipes, but it may not be worth the frustration.  My blood pressure is still up.

As far as my bed goes, I can make it to the top of the mattress, but it is still a close call.  I did also buy two full sets last Friday.  One is on a frame from Woodland and is inaccessible to me; the other is still without a frame so I have no trouble trying that one.

The last problem has been getting a phone on the Ridge, Because of an over sight, my dial tone is on the pole halfway down the driveway, not at the jack in the big bedroom. The Fairpoint workers are now on strike and in fairness to them, they did their work when they said they would. I now have to find a way to connect my jack to the pole in the yard. Now I do have electricity and running water, two amenities I did not have the first time I moved there, but I have no phone, no television, no computer.  I feel as though I am really living in the country.

I have a new washing machine and dryer that are digital and I think they even think for themselves.  The dryer figures out the weight on the water in the clothes to be dried and sets its own timer…and the clothes are always dry when the signal goes off.  It’s magic.  I have not yet found my ease in cooking with my new oven. The stovetop is gas with two burners and a grill in place of the other two burners.  The oven is digital electric and I have not quite figured it out. I will have to do my due diligence before Thanksgiving rolls around.

The worst part of my move to Robbinston is that much of my “stuff” is still in Woodland.  I checked in the new room Friday and found four book cases full of books.  I knew I had a few books in that room, but I did not realize how many. I already have moved my aunt’s and my mother’s belongings to the farm.  I have even given some items to family members, but where will I put my books, collections or jigsaw puzzles.  I have to rethink this and I have to do it soon.  The snow will be flying and I will be sliding my belongings across the field.

Lulu continues to enjoy the farm although she has been grounded for a week.  Last week she followed her nose and the scent it had picked up down the driveway onto the Ridge Road.  Now she has to stay on her leash or stay in her pen.  I am not sure she will figure this out, but she is not happy when she begins to run and can only run twenty feet before the leash stops her.  She really loves to run and now with the weather getting a bit cooler that she is used to, she needs to run to stay warm.  She will really not like the snow.

With all of the weather getting a bit cooler, I have begun looking for a few simple, but nourishing, slow cooker meals. These meals will be good when the family gets home after a hard day of work, practices or games. This first recipe is for ”Vegetable and Pasta Soup” and can be found in the cookbook entitled Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes.


Vegetable and Pasta Soup



Two cans (14 and one half ounces) beef broth

One cans (14 ounces) whole tomatoes, un-drained

Two zucchini, thinly sliced

One and a half cups water • One onion, chopped

Two carrots, peeled and thinly sliced

Two tablespoons plus on teaspoon dried parsley flakes

One tablespoon dried oregano leaves

One and a half uncooked small shell-shaped pasta • Grated Parmesan cheese

Method: In slow cooker, combine beef broth, tomatoes, zucchini, water, 

onion, carrots, parsley and oregano.  Cover and cook on Low 8 to 10 hours or on High 4 to 5 hours. Stir in uncooked pasta and cook additional thirty minutes (High) or until pasta is tender. Garnish with grated Parmesan cheese.  Serve. This recipe makes 6 to 8 servings.