The Third Sunday Before Advent

Hello Blog Friends!

This week’s title comes with feelings of both joy and concern. Advent is, hands down, my favourite season of the Liturgical year and so I await it’s coming with joyful anticipation. The “concern” part is due to the dauntingly long list of   gifts still to be made along with my worries that no one will sign up for the Advent Study Program or log-on for Carols and Cocoa 😊. Although trying hard to focus more on the “joyful anticipation” it is hard to ignore the reality of the calendar as we now near the mid-point of November.

Did you read this week’s special Wednesday Words post? The families have sent in some darling photos. I am particularly fond of the smallest chef in his apron and hat 😊. As mentioned in the post, a couple of the Mums have already asked when we will be launching Season 7, I guess that question needs to be addressed at the next Day Camp committee meeting .

Meanwhile, work is focusing around both the Advent Study Program and Carols & Cocoa. For the latter event we seem to be doing quite well in gathering a group of artists who are willing to record short video presentations. It is harder to know if people will actually log on for the event, although we are attempting to advertise it as widely as possible.

As for the study program, participants do need to register for that and a couple have people have signed up, for which I am grateful. ”Constant badgering does wonders” so I need to be diligent in reminding alumni to begin signing up.

This week I also sent out an agenda to the CTM Board as our next meeting will be taking place on Sunday, the 19th. It is good to circulate the agenda at least a week ahead, as it also serves as a reminder to anyone who may have forgotten that there is a meeting coming up soon.  Next Wednesday is the deadline for content submissions for CTM’s Advent/ Christmas “Networks” newsletter. Needless to say, no one has yet submitted anything so I guess badgering will also be required in that area.

In order to prepare for the Alumni Advent program I took some time this week to start work on the PowerPoint template we will be using for each session. I have keyed in the basic info for Lectio Divina, which we will be using for Advent 1 and have shared access to the draft with Jessica, who will be leading that practice. So far we are still missing a leader for the third session, on December 17th and have been scrolling through lists of alumni names to see if anyone pops out as a likely prospect 😊.

Outside of dealing with these varied Day Camps/Office issues, the weather this week has been FOUL. Monday and Tuesday we had pouring rain that brought down lots of leaves, which I dashed out and raked up in the freezing cold on Wednesday only to be followed by 5cms of SNOW on Thursday morning, causing another avalanche of leaves that could not be raked up as they were all mixed into the snow. Sigh. This morning it is only +2ºC outside but I have just completed 2 hours of clean up work, as the temperature has risen enough to thaw the snow, although the leaves are still wet. The push is on to get the last of them cleaned up so I can spread my compost, marking the very last act of my gardening season and the transition to winter with it’s attendant shovelling. At present, my hope is to have the last of the leaves cleared out of the flowerbeds by the middle of next week and then to spread the compost and admit defeat, for this year, in terms of any more gardening 😊.

Now that I am thoroughly frozen I can finally turn my attention to the Saturday Bake. The first item on the list is the GF bread for my friend Sue, followed by a batch of granola, 3 baguettes and Cranberry Scones, the last 2 items destined for the freezer. All of which to say it is time to close off with the “November Scones” recipe: –

Cranberry Orange Scones

  • 2 cups flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 4 Tbsps. chilled butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup cranberries, coarsely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. grated orange zest
  • 1 large egg
  • ¾ cup whipping cream

Preheat oven to 400º and line a large baking sheet with parchment. Place the flour, 1/3cup sugar, baking powder, salt and butter in a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles large crumbs. Transfer to a mixing bowl and stir in the cranberries and orange zest. In a small bowl, whisk together the whole egg and cream. Add to the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Turn out onto a floured surface and gently knead a few times to draw the dough together, Pat out 1” thick and cut into desired shapes. Transfer to baking sheet and brush with a little extra cream. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar. Bake for 15-20 minutes and cool on rack before serving. Makes 8-10 scones.

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