Everyone gives up something for Lent and I would venture a good many of the sacrifices include chocolate. Chocolate and Peanut Butter is a favorite combination of mine so I’m thinking ahead to Easter Day and having a pan of these brownies on hand. You can keep the marshmallow bunnies and the jelly beans. My chocolate level is low so the only cure, still a few weeks away, is something gooey, sweet, and chocolate!
Marbled Chocolate-Peanut Butter Brownies
½ cup crunchy peanut butter
1/3 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup dark, brown sugar
3/4 granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon orange extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, mix peanut butter, butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until light and creamy. Beat in eggs and extracts. Blend in dry ingredients. Spread batter in greased 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Scatter the chocolate chips over the top and bake for three minutes. Remove from oven and run a knife through the chocolate and peanut butter batter in swirls. Return to oven and bake approximately 25 to 30 minutes. Cut in squares when cool.
Makes approximately 2 dozen bars.
It isn’t often that one has a family picture for their cat! These three were brought to our house by their very smart mother when they barely could walk yet. I went out to the yard in the morning and was very surprised to find a black and white kitten on the front step. She hissed when I picked her up and took her into the house. I gave the kitten to the keeping of my very surprised son while I checked to see if there were any more ‘gifts’ awaiting me. Sure enough, in almost the same place was a soft grey baby who was surprised to see me but was happy to cuddle in some warm hands. My son had found a box so we added number two find to it. I went out a third time and a husky orange-striped kitten was looking for his sisters.
The kittens were well-cared for and we thought we knew who the mother cat was so when the mature, motherly Mrs. Black Cat showed up, we happily showed her the box of kittens. She growled and hissed. We tried, again, and she just got angrier and we wondered if she resented them having been touched by us. While we pondered the standoff between the mother cat and the kittens, another cat happened upon the scene. Miss Stubby wasn’t the smartest cat and a bit of a nervous animal. She looked at us, looked at the angry Mrs. Black Cat, and hopped into the box of kittens who welcomed her greatly. We never would have credited her with actually moving three kittens through the streets at night and having the sense to bring them to us.
This was two years ago and where are they all today? Miss Stubby was adopted by a family in 29 Palms and lives with seven other cats and quite happily from last report. The sedate grey one went to live in a convent which seemed to suit her. The orange one grew to be a huge tom cat but a big, spoiled baby who is much loved. He lives in Colorado.
The first kitten to darken our doorstep two years ago? We kept her and she is our little waif around the house.
“One half the troubles of this life can be traced to saying yes too quick, and not saying no soon enough.” Josh Billings
Every year of life adds memories for us. This poem beautifully points out how poignant these personal histories and how deep they twine into our very being.
by D. H. Lawrence
Softly, in the dusk, a woman is singing to me;
Taking me back down the vista of years, till I see
A child sitting under the piano, in the boom of the tingling strings
And pressing the small, poised feet of a mother who smiles as she sings.
In spite of myself, the insidious mastery of song
Betrays me back, till the heart of me weeps to belong
To the old Sunday evenings at home, with winter outside
And hymns in the cozy parlor, the tinkling piano our guide.
So now it is vain for the singer to burst into clamor
With the great black piano appassionato. The glamour
Of childish days is upon me, my manhood is cast
Down in the flood of remembrance, I weep like a child for the past.
“…A “Liberal Paradise” would be a place where everybody
has guaranteed employment,
free comprehensive healthcare,
and only Law Enforcement has guns.
And believe it or not, such a place does indeed exist …
It’s called prison.”
Morris Schwartz is on his deathbed, knows the end is near, is with nurse, his wife, his daughter and two sons.
“So,” he says to them, “Bernie, I want you to take the Beverly Hills houses.”
“Sybil, take the apartments over in Los Angeles Plaza.”
“Hymie, I want you to take the offices over in City Center.”
“Sarah, my dear wife, please take all the residential buildings downtown.”
The nurse is just blown away by all this and as Morris slips away, she says
“Mrs. Schwartz, your husband must have been such a hardworking man to have accumulated all this property.”
Sarah replies, “Property??? The little jerk has a paper route!”