Dear Sisters

Dear Sisters
Highland 12th Ward Sisters

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Halloween Familly Traditions...Fun Memories from the 60's!

Halloween Family Traditions 

Where did your Halloween family traditions start?  When I was a little girl we lived in Alpine, Utah.  The old school...which was pretty creepy and had only four classrooms and a rickety fire escape...also had a gymnasium next door.  My fondest Halloween memories from that time are of the school's carnival and spook alley in that old gym.  The whole town turned out for the pond, pop bottle ring toss, bean bag games.  Afterward we did a little trick or treating, which I did with my eyes shut...because people in costumes are scary!  I wish I had a picture or two from back then.
The Old Alpine School
Did you ever see the movie "Lady in White?"

This is one of my favorite Halloween movies.  The little boy on the cover has been locked in the school and is hiding in the cloak room...what happens next is spooky fun! The old Alpine School had cloak rooms like this.  The time period of the movie is my's like watching your Halloween memories come to life...if you were locked in the school after the class party!
Halloween Class Party...not mine, though!

When we moved to American Fork, I was in third grade.  My mom was in PTA, so she helped out with the Harrington School carnival.  Spook alley mostly...grape eyeballs and spaghetti gutts.  The classics!   My favorite part of the carnival was the sloppy joes and doughnuts.  Today, they are still the perfect Halloween foods.

We were too broke to buy costumes, so we had to use our imaginations and whatever we could dig up out of an old box in the basement, but I think we came up with some pretty good ideas.  Still, it was annoying to be dressed as the world's scariest witch and then have to wear a coat!
Lovely store-bought!

Devey Family Trick or Treats
Like I was saying, we didn't have a lot of money, so we couldn't afford to give away full-size candy bars like many of our neighbors.  So we improvised.  With a little creativity, we made some of the most popular treats on the block.  Our two favorites were treat bags filled with candied popcorn and Tootsie Pop Ghosties.

One Saturday I made a huge batch of candied popcorn...for demonstration purposes.
My recipe card is below...still written in my high school handwriting.
(I made recipe cards for my "hope chest")

"Karen Lundell's Candied Popcorn"
Also known as "Granny Goose Popcorn."
  It was colored bright red and was sold in bags in the Potato Chip aisle. 
I can still taste that red dye they later banned.

3/4 Cup Milk
2 Tablespoons Butter
2 Cups Sugar
1 Tsp. Vanilla
Food Coloring

Cook to a softball stage.  Pour over a dishpan (?) full of popcorn and stir until all the popcorn is coated and becomes sugary. Note:  I use 4 to 5 bags of microwave popcorn.  The buttered variety makes it even yummier.

My collection of little treat bags.

My favorite bag from childhood immortalized on a tee-shirt.
My "Halloween Costume."

Some bags I stuff with batting and use for ornaments.

Best filled with popcorn as Nature intended.

The Tootsie Pop Ghosties I was telling you about.

Suckers, cocktail napkins, ribbon and a marker.  Easy Peasy! I decided to give these as treats a few years ago.  But I made them a couple of weeks in advance. Do you ever have that nightmare that it's 5 p.m. on Halloween and you haven't bought the candy yet? Nowadays, they put the candy out so early, I buy it three or four times!
Target Dollar Spot Craft

Cute Little Chalkboard Signs for $1...

...become reversible with scrapbook paper and a vintage postcard graphic.
The backside was unpainted.

One of the cards I used.

Hope you enjoyed this blast from my Halloween past!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fun Dollar Store Halloween Crafts...Target Too!

I Love a Vintage Halloween!
For me, Halloween is not about the's about the season.  I have always been an Autumn person.  I look forward to the brisk mornings, the falling leaves and the flavor of Pumpkin Spice Everything!  I have such fond memories of Halloween from when I was a child...and I have spent my adult life trying to recreate it somehow.  That's why I love the look of vintage Halloween decorations and have a bit of a collection of blow mold lanterns and die cuts of cats and haunted houses.  My neighbors know I love to decorate my front porch as well as the inside of my house...I can't help myself.  I have a need to create.  If you, too, are feeling a need to create...but money doesn't grow on Halloween trees...I have assembled a few fun holiday projects that I found on Pinterest and a few blogs.  Nothing scary...I don't like gory "chainsaw massacres" on my front yard.  I prefer black cats and Jack o' Lanterns. 
Dollar Store Crafts
My Favorite...Haunted Village.
Dollar store houses are sprayed with matte black.
I made a Christmas village by painting the houses cream and adding glitter.
Pumpkin Topiary
Dollar store burner covers, a pail and a yard stick or dowel.
"BOO" Front Door D├ęcor
The one shown is embroidery hoops, but burner covers would work instead.
Think "JOY" for Christmas!
Wrap a Dollar Store Pumpkin in Burlap...Classy!

More Dollar Store Pumpkins.
Paint or decoupage for a designer look.

I especially love this! Trick or Treat Flower Pots!
Wouldn't a Black Cat head be cute as well?
Dollar Store Frames or DI.
So much fun printable art can be found on Pinterest

 Blog Friend Kim transformed a Target owl from the $3 bins.
The hat is in the Halloween section...also $3.
Kim turned a Target light-up house into a Trick or Treat house!
$3 in Halloween section.
 Pot Lid Pumpkins.
I spray painted lids from the DI and added buttons and such for details.
DI had a lot of pot lids yesterday.  I get the ones with the black knobs for noses.
 My blog Zettas Aprons
Burlap Halloween Art.
Walmart sells burlap wrapped frames.
Decorate with scrapbook paper and trims for super quick fun!
That's all for now...
Happy Halloween Crafting!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Apple Days...and School Days!

Beautiful Apples!

September is here at last!  Gardens are brimming with tomatoes and peppers and corn.  Time to count the canning jars and get the canner down from the top shelf of the pantry.  I am really missing having a garden this year.  George is the family gardener...and canner...and was too busy with an out of town job to take care of a garden.  So no tomato and bacon sandwiches for us.  Luckily our neighbors, the Andersons, took pity on us and brought us a big bag of the most beautiful, perfect tomatoes.

Apples are my favorite fall fruit.  I have so many happy memories of stories from my Devey grandparents, of their fruit farm in Fort Canyon.  During WWII, they were at their most busy, growing strawberries, raspberries and apples.  My dad has written many stories about working on the farm in his personal history.

Utah Mountain Apples fruit label...Alpine, Utah

Most fruit growers had their own crate labels.  Unfortunately, Dad's family didn't have one.  This label is from the neighboring farm.  Grandpa Mel and Grandma Zetta worked for the Andrews family when they were first I have adopted their crate label.  I found two online and framed for my kitchen and one for my dad as a Christmas gift.  

Canning Apple Pie Filling

Looks Delicious!
This recipe was found on  Skip To My Lou Blog
One of my Pins on Pinterest.

Apple Crisp
Also from Skip To My Lou

Apple Crisp

Mix together:

3/4 cups old fashioned oats
1/2 cup flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 cup butter (use a 1/2 cup to make it over the top)

Pour pie filling into a 9 X 13 pan (or smaller for thicker crisp). Spread topping on top of apples. Bake at 375 degrees for about 35 minutes until bubbly.

Serve warm with ice cream. Yum!

If you crave apple pie, but not the work...try the recipe below.

~ Apple Dumplings ~ The Pioneer Woman


2 sticks butter 
1 tsp. vanilla 
1 1/2 cups sugar 
2 tubes crescent rolls 
2 granny smith apples 
12 ounces of Mountain Dew 
Vanilla ice cream


Peel and slice your apples.   
Wrap each slice in a crescent dough triangle and place in sprayed (greased) pan.   
In a bowl, melt your butter and stir in sugar and vanilla.   
Pour over top of the wrapped apples....or spread on top with a spoon.   
Pour the Mt. Dew all around and sprinkle with Cinnamon.   
Place in 350 degree oven for 30 to 40 minutes.  Serve hot with ice cream! 
Update 3/12 - I've had several readers tell me they like cutting the sugar down to 1 cup.  I just tried it and liked it just as much!  So, might as well use less sugar, right? :)  Believe me, it's still plenty sweet...especially with ice cream. 

I have made this before and it's almost too yummy...if that's possible!

Aren't you glad they're back in school!
Happy September!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Top 10 Utah Foods...For Pioneer Day!

This is the Place!
Pioneer Day is almost here!  
Celebrating the arrival of Brigham Young and Company....July 24, 1847.

The Mormon Pioneers came to the Mountain West from many countries.  These diverse cultures brought with them their many traditions and foods.  Festivals celebrating these traditions can be found through out the state of Utah...Swiss Days in Midway and Scandinavian Days in Epraim are just two examples.  Spanish Fork celebrates their Icelandic ancestry. With our state being such a melting pot of do we explain Utah's signature foods?  It's a mystery only partly explained by the need to feed large families on a budget.  Here are some of Utah's Top 10 Foods as found in a May 17, 2011 article written by Kathy Stephenson for The Salt Lake Tribune. 

Top 10 Utah Foods!

Fry Sauce...
Created by the founder of Arctic Circle.
If you've ever had trouble re-creating the probably forgot to add onion powder and pickle juice to the ketchup and mayonnaise.

Utah Scones...
aka Navajo Fry Bread with honey butter.

My favorite is  any Green or Red Flavor with Coolwhip, Cottage Cheese and Pineapple.

Bear Lake Raspberries...
Who wouldn't love a celebration around raspberry ice cream shakes?

Pastrami Burgers...
Originated at Crown a Greek-American fast-food staple.

Funeral Potatoes...
Large pans of deliciousness!
Made to feed large families at reunions and funerals...which are also reunions.

Dutch Oven Cooking.
Utah is home to the International Dutch Oven Society.
The cast-iron pot is our official state cooking pot.

Green River Watermelons....

Utah Honey...
It wouldn't make sense to have a beehive for the state symbol and not make the best honey!

Collegiate Ice Cream.
BYU and USU are among 15 colleges in the US that make their own ice cream.
Rise and Shout for LaVell Vanilla, Cougar Fans!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Blast from the Past...Relief Society Magazine!

 Relief Society Magazine...Part of our Heritage.
Back to School Issue 1939
Did you know that the Relief Society had it's own magazine?  When I was a young girl I remember seeing copies at home and at my grandmothers' houses.  I didn't find them very interesting...since there weren't any comics...but I would look through them now and then

This is how I remember the magazine...this is 1963
The Relief Society Magazine, including the Relief Society Bulletin of 1914 was the official publication of the Relief Society organization from 1915 to 1970.  It replaced the privately owned Woman's Exponent which began publication in 1872.  The magazine was important to Utah women as a publishing fact it was run by women editors.  The magazine featured stories, articles, poetry and tips and outlines for upcoming lessons.  One lesson topic I got a kick out of was about teaching youth the evils of Hallowe'en pranks...with an emphasis on respect for property and seeking out "seasonable and wholesome pleasures."

August of two issues I own.
Susa Young Gates...editor from 1915 to 1922
The two issues I found on eBay a few years ago were August 1922 and August 1929.  I bought them because one of the magazines featured a story about hiking up to Timpanogos Cave...which would have been a lot more tricky back in the 20's. The 1922 issue was full of farewells to Susa Young Gates who retired that year.  I don't know if you are familiar with the writings of women in the early 20th century, but it is full of flowery prose and fairly awful poetry.  Sister Gates was lauded as "Thou gifted daughter of a mighty seer" and "From early youth thy pen so free and bold, hath fed the hearts of numbers manifold."  It's a fascinating glimpse into a time gone by.
Pages of Advertisements...

Photo of Alpine Loop in 1926.
The article about Timpanogos Cave was titled "The Ante-Room of Heaven."  The author's prose is extra flowery and she gives her companions cutesy names like "The Charming One," "The Little Maiden," and "The Guest-From-Berkley."  She writes, " a high-powered Fierce Sparrow, we glided away over the great, broad highway bordered on either side with sunflowers, goldenrod, poplar trees, green fields, ripening grain and clover blossoms, through the thriving town of American Fork, past Utah Lake, shimmering like a sheet of gunmetal in the sunlight, then a little south and east to American Fork Canyon, a savage gorge cut deep in the mountains by a wild stream; scenic grandeur that offers the tourist thrills worth traveling across the continent to enjoy, and where Mount Timpanogos, scarred by age-old torrents, yet majestic in his rugged grandeur, rears his regal head twelve thousand feet above the sea and looks down upon us smilingly, serene, a symbol of the mighty power of the Eternal; reverential joy and an ever increasing love for Utah filled my heart. "  That was one!  There were photos of a few cave features and somebody's baby.  I absolutely loved it!

Good old Deseret Book.

Several ads for garments...made by different companies.

For some reason we had a similar one of sisters stored their dolls in the cabinet once we ran out of needles and the records were lost or broken.
The December 1970 issue of The Relief Society Magazine" was the last.  The Church discontinued the magazine as part of the implementation of the "Priesthood Correlation Program."  This magazine and several others were combined and replaced the Ensign.
Sisters, I hope you enjoyed this little piece of Relief Society History.