Veterans' Day is such a special day, one of America's most special of days really. Today we honor our veterans that made one inspiring decision that changed their lives and all Americans' lives forever. They committed their lives to serve our country. This is an extraordinary measure of commitment, for as we know, many, many, many of those committed heroes lost God's greatest gift for our country.
Our military friends from today or yesteryear make and made our great country be. They make us be proud, be American, and most importantly, be here!
It is plain and simple, without these heroes, our American dream would not be. Let us remember our Revolutionary War heroes that truly made our country the independent, democratic country that it remains today. Or one could consider the great Civil War heroes that fought for domestic peace and equality for ALL men and women. Then one could consider the war of all wars, World War II, where our military heroes fought to retain our world's humanity and peace against great evil forces. And the more contemporary war heroes, less spoken of perhaps, but just as impressive - The Korean, Vietnam, Gulf, and Middle East veterans of today.
All of them, whether they are with us in body or spirit alone, deserve all the bucket loads of respect and recognition we, as Americans, can muster. But most importantly, they deserve our gratitude. Because without these heroes of America, we would not exist in the world that we know and more than likely, take for granted every day.
So let us love, hug, give thanks and pray for all living and passed veterans that carried on their heroic duties to make our lives peaceful, independent, equal and safe, for the good of America and all humanity. Or better yet, seek out a veteran and bake them or buy them a delicious All-American pie to show your love and appreciation, as wives, sisters, and mothers have done for decades showing theirs!
Eat Pie, be thankful for our Veterans!
P.S. The handsome Korean War veteran is my daddy, Ben McComb, taken in 1951.
Every year, my family celebrates the fall with Harvest Home, a lovely tradition we started since we moved to our beloved, century old farmhouse over fifteen years ago. Harvest Home is an old English tradition celebrating the annual harvest. After all the fields were gathered the community would come together for a community feast to rejoice in their bounty of blessings. We do this by having family and friends join us for homemade apple cider, lots of apple and pumpkin pies and our delicious stone soup.
Stone soup starts by adding a small stone to a large cooking pot filled with broth and vegetables over an open fire. Each hungry guest and/or family contributes a vegetable of their choosing to the bubbling brew until a rich and hearty soup created for all to share. Some guests are creative and bring bottles of wine, fresh herbs and homemade noodles or pasta. This is always fun, because each year the soup is different, but always, always yummy. Guests take turns stirring the massive copper pot, which is especially fun for the young and the old.
The pot is very similar to the one my Grandma Ferrell used for canning enormous batches of apple butter in the fall. My mother remembers the family stirring the great pot of her homemade applesauce and seasonings all day until it became thick with a lovely deep ruby hue. I threw an apple butter party one year too, which is loads of work and fun too!
When the soup is ready, our family and friends gather around the copper pot and fire. My sweet mother, adorned with her West Virginia hillbilly hat, tells the story of Stone Soup aloud to the crowd, and then my daddy says the blessing. Then joyful ladles of soup are dispersed to the hungry, patient crowd. It is so sweet to hear the sounds of happy folks eating bowls of hot and hearty goodness on a crisp fall day. And for favors, we intentionally make more soup than we can eat, so each family leaves with a container for their next day’s Sunday dinner!
Later, we watch old Disney movies on our vast barn doors, as folks are wrapped in quilts and comforters to stay warm. Some stay by the cozy bonfire to sing songs, tell stories and enjoy the bountiful day filled with good family, friends, food and fun!
I wholeheartedly suggest you put a party like this on, if space and time and hard work are plentiful in your circle of family and friends. As it really is another delicious memory for you to share with those that you love and a special event to remember all of God's sweet blessings!
Eat pie, and celebrate God's bounty -- xoxoxo Linda
October is here. I absolutely love the fall. In fact, so much so, that I get a bit offended if people aren’t in complete agreement with me of its magnificence. I love the coolness in the air and the aged, earthy smell of the blustery breezes. I love the grey, bullying clouds playing hide and seek with the warm, happy sun in the October sky. In our own front yard, our beloved Mother Maple tree creates the most vivid yellow leaves imaginable this season. And when the sunshine dances on her fading, falling leaves, well, it is breathtaking.
I truly love all things fall – bonfires, football games, homecoming parades, chili, soups, pot pies, hot cider, tea and chocolate, sweaters, fall coats, down comforters, gingerbread, custard, warm ovens, crock pots, caramel apples, hot bubble baths and lots of lots of pie…
Eat Pie, Love Life and Fall…Linda xo
I was completely humbled and elated when my former high school A.P. English teacher, Mr. Spagnuolo, walked into my cute, little pie shop. He truly looked the same to me with the exception of his unfortunate Parkinson’s disease affecting his gait and balance. His smile was sweet and tender and his voice was calming and sure, just as it was almost thirty years ago. But, his big gift, his words and his wisdom were as profound, sound and as addictive to me as they were so many years ago.
Mr. Spag, as he was fondly referred to, introduced me to the written word, our vernacular, non-fiction, fiction and classic characters, writers, poets, and other worlds; a whole beautiful utopia of how words can change people and ultimately, the way we choose to live. He taught me to examine, imagine, create, articulate, work hard, be passionate, believe and dream.
He inspired me.
He believed in me.
Truly, many people affect how we create our own life, and make no mistake we do create our own life. However, sometimes certain people carve their initials into our souls and enable us to see our potential, our gifts and our own utopia. Mr. Spag did this for me. He told me I was smart and that if I worked hard that I could accomplish much. He told me I had gifts. He told me to dream. He believed in me. I was astounded that a man of his merit thought all of this of me, little Linda McComb (Hundt.)
His years of teaching me and his few sentences literally changed my way of thinking, instead of reading and dreaming of all the other worlds, I knew that I had what it takes to create my own. And, I did, in retrospect, exactly what he taught me to. I dreamed, I created, I used my passion and gifts and I worked hard, very hard, to create the life I want and the world I want to live in, to share with my family and friends and now my customers.
I have a guest book at my shop that customers write in, expressing their feelings for the shop, email addresses etc. People are so gracious, and have written such lovely things about their experience at my bakery-café, Sweetie-licious, and I appreciate each and every comment. However, never was I more pleased when Mr. Spag wrote a few sentences down in my little red book despite his ailing hands. When I read what he wrote, it brought tears to my eyes.
Some people dream. Some make theirs come true. Hugh Spagnuolo I promise you, if I had not been blessed to have you as my English teacher all those years ago, I would not be everything I am today nor, everything I will be tomorrow.
Eat pie, inspire others… xo Linda