The countdown begins

We are well into the month of November, and it seems that the countdown to the holiday season is here. I’ve been to Victoria lately and a couple of small, nearby towns and already the Christmas décor is either already on display or it’s being put on display. This is way too early for me, as my shopping involved the need of items to finish out Halloween! Luckily, I was able to find what I wanted/needed and there wasn’t a problem.
Now, for our next holiday…Friday, November 11, is Veteran’s Day. This is the day we honor the veterans of all the wars. It is a day not only honoring those who lost their lives, but also honoring the living veterans. When I went online to find out information about Veteran’s Day, there were over 52,000,000 sites to choose from and I just chose a couple of them.
Veteran’s Day had its beginnings at the end of World War I, which was known as the war to end all wars. It officially ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 when the German officials signed the Armistice, which was a temporary suspension of hostilities by the agreement of Germany and the Allies.
In actual fact, the war officially ended on June 28, 1919, with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles. It has been known as Armistice Day or Remembrance Day in other parts of the world.
According to Wikipedia the commemoration of Armistice Day was recognized in the United States by a proclamation from President Woodrow Wilson in 1919, with the words: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…”
An Act approved May 13, 1938, made November 11th of each year a legal holiday. This was a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be celebrated and known as “Armistice Day”. It was primarily set aside to honor veterans of World War I, however, in 1954, after World War II, and after American forces had fought aggression in Korea, the 83rd Congress, amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting in its place the word “Veterans”, in its place.
Veteran’s Day almost fell prey to a change of date, being moved to the fourth Monday of October by the Uniform Monday Holiday Act in 1968. This is the law that moved Washington’s Birthday, Memorial Day and Columbus Day. Due to protests by veteran’s groups, it was moved back to November 11th in 1978. It is a federal and state holiday in most states.
Don’t forget to fly your flag proudly on November 11th!
It’s time to start thinking about Thanksgiving! As you know, we only have two more weeks before it is upon us, and I know you don’t really want to hear this, but it’s barely six weeks until Christmas.
Since dessert is always an important part of any Thanksgiving celebration, we are going to start early with recipes for desserts! These recipes all use pumpkin and may give you a little different take on what to have instead of (or as well as) pumpkin pie.
Pumpkin Bars
4 eggs
1 cup oil
2 cups sugar
2 cups pumpkin (1 can, 10-oz size)
Mix above together and set aside.
In separate bowl, combine the following:
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cinnamon
½ teaspoon EACH cloves, nutmeg and ginger
Sift together and add to first mixture, mixing well. Pour into 9×12 pan and bake at 350ºF until done. These bars are delicious just as they are, but for a real treat, frost them with a cream cheese frosting when cool.
Praline Pumpkin Cake
1 package yellow cake mix (without added pudding)
½ cup oil
¾ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon allspice
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup canned pumpkin
¼ cup water
3 eggs
Praline Mixture (recipe follows)
Chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Combine cake mix, oil, sugar, spices, pumpkin and water. Beat well to blend. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Pour half of mixture into greased and floured Bundt pan. Top with following Praline Mixture, then fill pan with remaining batter. Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until cake tests done with toothpick. Cool cake in pan for 15 minutes; remove to plate to finish cooling. When cool, frost and sprinkle with chopped pecans.
Praline Mixture
½ cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup brown sugar
½ cup softened butter or margarine
1/3 cup flour
Blend ingredients together until crumbly and use as directed.