I have fond memories of 1963 and Germany, when my dad was stationed in Stuttgart. Mom and I lived on base in some apartments.
Wisconsin winters remind me of Christmas in Germany. Lot's of snow, and pines that tower above the buildings where we lived for 18 months. On winter days, we kids would build snowmen on the hoods of the tenants' cars parked in the parking lot out front.
In summer Dad would take me walking through the Black Forest which butted up to the apartments, and we'd go on "squirrel hunts". I remember he and I would hunker down (I was tiny at 4) behind a fallen log, and he'd tell me to be very quiet and a squirrel would come out. It wasn't long before we spotted one, most likely checking out the two silly Humans wandering in his neck'o the woods.
Dad would take me to a Beer Garten somewhere at the end of our walk-we'd cross over a foot bridge that spanned a little pond and creek. I'd watch the swans and geese that inhabited the pond.
On Halloween, us kids would dress up warm and make ready to go Trick-or-Treating in the complex. Mom made me eat a bowl of chili for dinner first, which I wasn't too fond of. She wanted me full so I would be too full to eat candy when I got back.
That Christmas, Santa came through our apartment complex, sitting on the back of a Cadillac convertible. He waved at the kids in the parking lot, and I think he saw me from our upstairs window as I waved at him passing by. I was with a babysitter that day-I don't know where Mom was, but I was in the middle of nap-time when the Babysitter got me up to come to the window to see Santa as he passed by.
On Christmas Eve, it was customary for the children to put a shoe outside their bedroom door. It was our hope that if we were good little boys and girls, Santa would leave us candy in our shoe (ewwwwwwe) and if we were bad, he would leave sticks. I was so happy to find candy in the morning, I was a Good Girl!
I was visiting a blog this evening, and in my search for a reference to Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes, I ran across a recipe for Brotchen (little breads). They are little crusty rolls, which we ate for breakfast, with real churned butter and jelly.
I ended up bouncing from post to post, reeling from my new discovery-recipes for Artisan Crusty bread abound! You absolutely MUST check the brotchen blog at at Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes. If you are into real crusty bread like I am, you'll be hooked too!
Note to self: Must find Danish Dough Whisk.
Thanks, Virginia for starting me on a new pathway of Bread Baking fun and for helping me to revisit some of my fondest childhood memories once again!! :D