It has been quite a while since I last wrote, but things are just now getting back to normal since the earthquake. It’s almost Easter, and I’ve been hard at work trying to cut every corner possible to save money so that we can enjoy a nice Easter dinner. I’ve been feeding Al and the kids with an assortment of casseroles, mostly consisting of rice, hot dogs and canned vegetables. I’m getting by eating creamed peas on toast mostly, saving the “good” food for the rest of the family. I can tell that they are getting pretty tired of the same food day after day, but it will make the feast we can have on Easter even more special! I even have plans to make a chocolate cake using a recipe my mother developed during the Great War to deal with food shortages. It is so moist and delicious that I just have to share it with you:
• 3 cups all-purpose flour
• 2 cups white sugar
• 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
• 2 teaspoons baking soda
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
• 2/3 cup vegetable oil
• 2 cups water
• 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
• 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients together, then combine all the wet ingredients together in another bowl. Pour all the mixed wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and beat until smooth. Pour the batter into a greased 9 x 11 pan. Bake in a hot oven (I’d say 350 degrees F) for 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool in the pan. Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar.
I’ve also been quite occupied making or altering everyone’s Sunday clothing. I found a few of my old flapper-style dresses at my parent’s house a few months ago that I’ve made into new dresses for my daughters and I dyed an old silk slip of mine to line my husbands suit jacket. These will be welcome changes from the increasingly thread-bear dresses the girls are wearing and patched up jacket of Al’s. Still I’m desperately trying to figure out how to get new shoes for my son, Paul. He has gone almost two full years without a new pair and they are so worn out and tight on him that now the entire sole is cardboard.