Archive for Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Aunt Norie’s sewing room

September 30, 2009

Back to my mother-in-law and her amazing world. I’ve always enjoyed history and here I was right in the middle of how our ancestors lived totally “off he land,” so to speak.

As they opened up these prairies, I remember the day she and her daughter Cora made lye soap, in the big, old iron kettle out in the back yard. They had saved old bacon grease — they saved all of the waste, lard, etc., just for soap making. They cooked it, with or in the lye somehow. They strained and drained, then poured the finished product in large, flat pans to dry and harden.

The finished product was cut into squares of soft, golden bars. It was a real surprise — made a soft, rich lather nice on our hands and great in the laundry. Got rid of any poison Ivy and such.

Correction from last week: That bad or spoiled egg will float in cold water.

I remember we kids used to find nests in the haymow, or corners of the barn. Some of those eggs were totally spoiled. If they sloshed or rattled around in the shell, we took it far from the house, out in the field and threw it and broke it. They tell me it’s the rotten egg scent they add to raw natural gas, so you can easily and quickly know you have a leak.

When you break an egg, ever notice how sticky the white feels if you get some on your fingers? That film of egg white is a good substitute for glue. Just rub your finger around that freshly-broken, empty egg shell, rub it off on an envelope flap or whatever.

At 350 degrees, egg white becomes so tenacious it was used as cement for marble. Who knows, maybe it still is. If so, I bet the label has no mention of egg whites listed in its ingredients.

God bless, hugs now.

Aunt Norie, P.O. Box 265, Tonganoxie 66086; auntnorie@att.net.

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