Mother’s Memorybook aka Recipebook

The past weeks I’ve been working on a project that I stuck on the back burner far too long.

My mom has a fairly extensive recipe book and somehow it was just way easier to text her whenever I needed a recipe rather than copying it down myself 🥴 but I’m attempting to remedy that.

What I wasn’t expecting with this project is the amount of traveling I’m doing here:

Suddenly I’m back at our Christian Day School: middleschool age. My mom and her friend Michelle concocted these treats for a hot lunch they brought to school over Easter. Mother’s hot lunches were always amazing.

Next stop I’m on Chincoteague Island with a group of girls, experiencing this incredibleness for the first time. Thankfully they shared the recipe and it’s been something we’ve pulled out for special occasions. Once being my first family vacation with the Rohrers. I still get nervous remembering 🙈 but it turned out ok- they decided to keep me 🥰

Speaking of the Rohrer’s keeping me- we served Glazed Carrots at our wedding. We got the recipe when Mother traveled along with me to an Amish wedding and somehow she got drafted onto carrot cooking detail for supper. [*note- we knew the brides family, don’t think that random people get pulled to cook at weddings lol] Mother and an Amish lady that she’d never met before were given orders to cook the carrots until done. Mother loves tendercrisp vegetables and apparently Amish Lady did not, because they made a round or two around the Carrot cooker: Mother thinking the carrots were plenty done and turning them off; Amish Lady thinking they weren’t mushy enough and turning the stove back on 😅 In the end, our team won though. Mother brought the recipe home and we’ve feasted on tender crisp carrots ever since. (Drop them in boiling water and cook them 7 minutes max)

March 5, 2022 Horst/Rohrer Wedding

So many memories are hidden in these pages: recipes I drug home from the field because the food the farmers wife sent was exceptional; recipes collected from Home Ec class; from all of my aunts including dear Aunt Thelma who’s now enjoying the bounty of Heaven…. Recipes from my sister’s in-laws; food from friends around the globe- this book contains a vast and varied collection. Just like the collection of experiences of my life.

As I peruse Mother’s recipes- I’m struck by several different emotions:

1. Gratitude: the bounty of the earth is ours to enjoy because of God’s graciousness towards us. I’m so thankful. Christian Aid Ministries newsletter touched on world hunger this week ( here) The delicious food we experience daily is not something to take forgranted.

2. Nostalgia: so so many incredible meals and along with that memories. My mom has spent her life faithfully pouring her love into those around her by serving delicious meal after meal. My grandmothers did the same.

If you’re in the trenches of motherhood- here’s a little encouragement to keep doing what you’re doing. Your faithfulness does not go unnoticed even if your daughter takes years until she fully appreciates it. 🙈

So thankful for my mother’s selfless giving and the influence of so many ladies like her,


Gatlinburg, TN

I googled “quotes about the Smoky Mountains” Our experience could be summed up well by one quote (and we visited during off season 😅):

Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity. – John Muir

An ice and snow storm kept us out of the main pass, but the Smoky Mountains are beautiful!

Gatlinburg always shocks me a little. I’ve visited on several occasions, but this was the first time I’d stayed for more than a partial day and I was anxious to see if my initial perspective was my final call on the area.

Our motel was just a quick walk from the strip and we fought our way thru the crowds to be dazzled by the remaining “winterfest lights”

Howard’s Restaurant had the cozy mountain tavern vibe I was looking for. Delicious food in Gatlinburg’s oldest restaurant.

We found our way back to Pigeon Forge several times.

Paula Dean’s Family Kitchen superseded expectations.

The Dixie Stampede has been on my hit list for awhile. My major faux pas was not realizing that it had changed names. 🥴 A friendly clerk asked in passing what our evening plans were and I off-handedly said “Dixie Stampede!” She corrected me “you mean the Dolly Stampede” “No, the Dixie Stampede” “The Dolly Stampede” and so she and I stood there saying “Dixie” and “Dolly” until I realized that we both had the same place in mind. Oooops. I wasn’t trying to argue or push an agenda. Anyhow all that to say- I’m glad I got to experience the DOLLY stampede. Very memorable evening.

I love my souvenir from Smoky Mountain Knife Works. I have a collection of miniature things in my kitchen and I’m excited to add “the worlds smallest folding knife” to the collection-folded up it’s about the size of my finger nail.

And can you go the the Smokies without dressing up for a picture? Happy early anniversary to us 🥰

Gatlinburg/ Pigeon Forge treated us well. If you’re going-expecting a quiet mountain getaway, where the old men and coon dogs sit on the front porch of the general store and swap stories- you’ll be like me: disappointed lol

If you’re looking for lots of good food, big crowds, and plenty of unique amusement rides, rush on down.

To quote Ben “this feels less like vacation and more like…!”

Parts of Isaiah 55: 1. Come, all you who are thirsty,come to the waters, and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! 6 Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near. 8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,”declares the Lord. 9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.10 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish,so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, 11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.12 You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you…



Tracing my Family’s Roots

“It’s cold in here” I took a break from my phone and announced

Ben looked at me with amusement “It’s because you’re wandering around in the ice age”

And it’s true- Deborah messaged us crowing about her newly achieved favorite daughter status “Did you know that in the 1731 Father’s great-great-great-great-great-great grandad was buried at sea on the way to America leaving a wife and 3 sons? Someone shared this app the family tree and I’ve been knee deep in genealogy ever since.” (Android users, this is not your link-but don’t despair, just search “the family tree” or FamilySearch Tree in your App Store. I had a little trouble getting my family to pop up, but Deborah says it searches obituaries, so once I added info from my grandparents who have passed, it dug up all my info)

I couldn’t let Deb be the only one who was up on family history, so I set myself up a free account and followed Fathers line back as far as it went. I sorted thru all the different stories- lots of Dukes and the random couple (that lived 0586-0650 that decided to become a monk and nun after they had their second son. Grandmonk couldn’t be excused from his service for king at the time, but Grandnun became a nun at Treves. Towards the end of their life, they had to meet to settle some affairs and she was so concerned that he would fall back in love with her, that she shaved off her hair as a deterrent. It worked- he was horrified. Hmmmm

I kept going to until I came to Quintus Sulpicius de Rome 0060 BC, Roman Empire… unreal! “Romans” Nate spit in disgust when I called Deb to compare notes. My mind is just blown to imagine my grandfather a few times removed could’ve been the soldiers marching thru Jerusalem attempting to keep peace.

So that’s what I found about my dad’s family. He’s a skeptic as to the accuracy of this.

But on my mothers side of the family… I haven’t found that her pedigree (that’s what the app calls it and it makes me feel like I’m researching dairy cows or Labrador retrievers) goes back to the Roman Empire- but it’s equally as colorful. Grandpa Sir Hugh Montgomery was over in Ireland storming around in the late 1500s and got involved in the feud between Clan Montgomery and Clan Cunningham. He chased a Cunningham that had offended him clear to Holland where he combated him with a sword. A supposedly deadly blow was deflected by Cunningham’s belt buckle, and Grandpa ended up in jail until he broke out with the help of a Scottish soldier. Grandpa Montgomery “received a reprimand from King James but was soon back in favour.” Fact or fiction 🤷🏻‍♀️

And then I put a puzzle piece together that perfectly explains my nephews: Ragnar ‘Loðbrók’ Sigurdsson Danish King of Lethra, Russia Supposedly my moms family is from this well know Viking king. When I googled him I hope that the nephews don’t try out his warfare strategies, but sometimes when I’m trying to talk to my sisters on the phone I can understand what a Viking attack sounded lol Just kidding.

So is there merit perusing these stories of ancient days? I went to Scripture to be reminded again that God encouraged telling stories from generations to generations.

Joshua 22:28 Therefore we said that it will be, when they say this to us or to our generations in time to come, that we may say, ‘Here is the replica of the altar of the Lord which our fathers made, though not for burnt offerings nor for sacrifices; but it is a witness between you and us.’

Psalms 78:4 We will not hide them from their children, telling to the generation to come the praises of the Lord, And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done.

Psalms 22: 30 Posterity will serve him; future generations will be told about the Lord. 31 They will proclaim his righteousness, declaring to a people yet unborn: He has done it!

Conclusion: 2 things: 1. These verses are instructions for families to tell stories from generation to generation about how God had moved. I’m not sure that Viking or Clan Montgomery were the type of stories that fall into that category. Or even the nun/monk ancestors. Who raised their sons after she joined the convent? 🤔

2. Today matters! If the world stands and in 200 years someone is reading a paragraph on my life, my legacy is important and it’s up to me-today- to chose what it says.

My cousin Marj came to visit and summed my life up in a coffee cup and I love it. But I hope my life is more than my garden or our farm, or a blog that keeps my family on pins and needles about what I’m going to post next.

I pray that my life paragraph states a strong faith in the goodness of God.

Ephesians 3:20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his powerthat is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!


Kendra Horst Rohrer, distant daughter of so many people; current daughter of the Everlasting King