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Maxwell 46: Relegating the Kids' Table to the Vestibule


Coconut Flan

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On 2/17/2021 at 5:15 PM, Bethy said:

And we know the Maxwells milled their own flour when the kids were growing up, because not only was it mentioned on the blog years ago, but it's described in great detail (including the mom giving Molly earplugs to wear while the mill is running) in a Moody book.

I have to say it's one of the few things I agree with Gothard on, though I doubt for the same reasons. Freshly ground wheat flour doesn't have the bitter, fermented taste it gets when you buy whole wheat flour in the store. But I'm sure Gothard's reasons have more to do with oppressing women and keeping them too busy in the kitchen to question their husbands' decisions or want more out of life.

Interestingly enough, it was Steve who was the bread maker in the Maxwell house. He says he decided the family would benefit from homemade bread but didn't want to add to Teri's workload. So he made it until Sarah took over when she was older. 

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@sparkles, thanks for posting the link to that recipe from King Arthur!   The texture of the loaf looks spectacular! I'm going to order some of the King Arthur special dry milk right now.  In the recipe I have from the LLLI cookbook published in the early Whole Foods for the Whole Family, a suggestion for their basic whole wheat bread recipe was to add non-instant dry milk powder. Whole Foods for the Whole Family was abbreviated WFWF and affectionately called Woof Woof.  I've got two copies:  the only I bought in 1981 and one I bought maybe 20 years ago.  

ETA:  Just ordered the special dry milk and the Whole Grain Baking Book as well.

Edited by PennySycamore
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I’ve had the KAF whole grain baking book for years and generally have good results, although some or the recipes call for flours that I just can’t get locally and don’t want to spend the money on ordering online, like spelt and barley. When Whole Foods had the bulk bins I could sometimes find the flours there and buy 1-2 cups at a time which was very convenient when I wanted to try something without buying 5 lbs of it, but those I think are a permanent casualty of the pandemic. My new apartment is so hot all the time that yeasted things rise very fast, unfortunately the oven is wonky and much hotter on one side so I can’t bake anything unless I turn it every 10 minutes* so bread baking is out. But honestly what would I do with a whole loaf of bread anyway? The few times I buy bread without preservatives it goes bad much faster than I eat it.

I was a KAF devotee for years until I discovered Smitten Kitchen. Now I use both. SK recipes are just more forgiving in general, I’ve found, and never expect you to have unusual anything.

*I’m easily able to bake within this limitation so am waiting until it’s safer to have it fixed so I don’t have to have another person here's

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“I am really glad because this is really something that does not demand anything from a busy mom of littles. Just decide on the Scripture and press play. 

“I am using our breakfast time also for continual Scripture listening. Since June we`ve listened to Psalms, the Gospels and now Acts. Because of the baby, I wasn’t sure about uninterrupted time that I could read to them in the morning, so I used the audio Bible to help me in this way also. 

“I am hoping to help my children have a quiet time after the new year. I am planning to give my 5 year old daughter a Bible reading plan and a worksheet to complete alone. 

Because god forbid you actually spend time interacting with your spawn! Like reading to them, or using mealtimes to talk with them and learn what they are thinking/wondering about.

For all her issues, one thing I can say about my mother is that she read the bible with me sitting on her lap when I was still small and later sitting together on the sofa with an arm around me. And not a morning passed all the while I was in school that she didn't pray over me while we were waiting for the school bus.

Obligatory thread drift: I have a grain mill that I used to use until at the start of the pandemic when I discovered there's a stone-grinding flour mill about an hour north of where I live that mills only locally grown wheat of varieties I'd never heard of before. The flavor of those flours is so different from commercial strains I won't go back to buying or milling my own flour ever. Even better, I found a place nearer to me that repackages the flours into 5# bags and saves me the extra driving

Edited by Black Aliss
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I was saddened by the comments of the Mom who said she was giving work sheets for her 5 year old, and since her 3year old could read, having her read the bible along with Mom.   

These are all kids who should be playing, coloring and cutting and pasting, not being bombarded with the Bible 24/7.   

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I wasn't sure what I was reading. Do they just play a bible audio and eat or prep meals pretty much in silence, or are the words supposed to lodge in their minds as they chat as normal?  If someone learned a whole book of the bible, I'm guessing it might be the former.  But at age 6. Oh god what a poor childhood.

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10 hours ago, anachronistic said:

I’ve had the KAF whole grain baking book for years and generally have good results, although some or the recipes call for flours that I just can’t get locally and don’t want to spend the money on ordering online, like spelt and barley. When Whole Foods had the bulk bins I could sometimes find the flours there and buy 1-2 cups at a time which was very convenient when I wanted to try something without buying 5 lbs of it, but those I think are a permanent casualty of the pandemic. My new apartment is so hot all the time that yeasted things rise very fast, unfortunately the oven is wonky and much hotter on one side so I can’t bake anything unless I turn it every 10 minutes* so bread baking is out. But honestly what would I do with a whole loaf of bread anyway? The few times I buy bread without preservatives it goes bad much faster than I eat it.

I was a KAF devotee for years until I discovered Smitten Kitchen. Now I use both. SK recipes are just more forgiving in general, I’ve found, and never expect you to have unusual anything.

*I’m easily able to bake within this limitation so am waiting until it’s safer to have it fixed so I don’t have to have another person here's

I'll have to check into Smitten Kitchen.  I don't think you can have too many bread books.  The least favorite of mine is Bread Illustrated from America's Test Kitchen.  It's fine if you want to make varieties of white bread, but there are other books that are so much better with whole grains.  The recipes for pumpernickel in Beard on Bread, for example, are worthy of a good bakery.  It's a lot of work, but worth it.  The ATK folks need to learn from others.  

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As a Christian, I would rather my child know a portion of the Bible and have warm memories of learning it WITH me - memories of my voice as we talked about it together and maybe sing songs - than know the whole thing, having learned it by rote from a taped voice. 
 

Also, I hope I expressed that well enough because HOLY RUN-ON SENTENCE, BATMAN! 

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9 hours ago, Lady Grass Lake said:

I was saddened by the comments of the Mom who said she was giving work sheets for her 5 year old, and since her 3year old could read, having her read the bible along with Mom.   

These are all kids who should be playing, coloring and cutting and pasting, not being bombarded with the Bible 24/7.   

How is plugging your kids into an audio Bible any different than plopping them in front of the "beast" and having them watch some kind of religious children's program over and over again until they memorize it. Also, this mom sounds overwhelmed by the number of children she already has, so it's time to STOP.

Is it just me, or does it seem that the other sets of Maxgrands don't receive as much praise for their Bible memorization prowess as Christopher and Anna Marie's kids?

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13 hours ago, PennySycamore said:

I'll have to check into Smitten Kitchen.  I don't think you can have too many bread books.  The least favorite of mine is Bread Illustrated from America's Test Kitchen.  It's fine if you want to make varieties of white bread, but there are other books that are so much better with whole grains.  The recipes for pumpernickel in Beard on Bread, for example, are worthy of a good bakery.  It's a lot of work, but worth it.  The ATK folks need to learn from others.  

I got rid of all my cookbooks—over 500–a couple of years ago (donated them to 3 different libraries. I kept most of my bread books but still purged that collection by about half (the majority of those were really niche books that I bought when I was still blogging and baking all kinds of one-off, unusual breads). I still buy bread books but I do a better job of vetting what I’m buying now. If anyone wants recs for some that focus on whole grains (or anything else), let me know.

I like Smitten Kitchen but I wouldn’t call her an authority on bread so she’s not a go-to for me. I know she took a multi-day course at ICE (Institute for Culinary Education) a while ago, where I’ve taken some excellent bread classes as well. (I also took a weeklong bread course at French Culinary Institute.) There are a number of bloggers I follow who do focus on bread and I can recommend some of them too, especially for sourdough. 

One note if you’ve had a problem with ambient temps affecting your rise times. If your kitchen is really hot like mine is in warm weather (no AC in my house so the indoor temps are just as hot at the outdoor temps), use cold water to make your dough, not the lukewarm that usually recommended. It really helps to slow down the rise. In winter, I can’t recommend this proofer highly enough. I have two and they’re contstantly in use.

<——————— Bread geek here. ?

6 hours ago, FloraDoraDolly said:

How is plugging your kids into an audio Bible any different than plopping them in front of the "beast" and having them watch some kind of religious children's program over and over again until they memorize it. Also, this mom sounds overwhelmed by the number of children she already has, so it's time to STOP.

Is it just me, or does it seem that the other sets of Maxgrands don't receive as much praise for their Bible memorization prowess as Christopher and Anna Marie's kids?

Steve and Teri are the most hands-off parents in my memory. They educate with textbooks, they indoctrinate their children with daddy tapes (straight out the best dystopian sci-fi), they have the listen to the Bible on audio… The more they can hand off to technology, the happier they are and yet they can’t see the hypocrisy of it all.

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@sparkles , the Laurel's Kitchen Bread Book said that they wished that someone someday would invent a proofing box like that folding proofer.  I haven't checked the revised edition to see if they mention the proofing boxes and mine was copyrighted in the '80s.  

I don't know if it really matters if the final rise temp is a bit cooler than the first and second risings,  but if it does then the proof settings on my wall ovens might be pretty useless. If I I want to use it I'd need to take some racks out of the oven I'm going to actually bake in and I don't really have a place where they aren't going to get covered in dog hair except in the back of the MINI in trash bags.  

Edited by PennySycamore
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@sparkles, you are definitely my people! I absolutely love my Brod & Taylor bread proofer!

When I once raved about it in a baking site, a bunch of male bakers went on and on about about how I was wasting money and what *they* did to proof bread. Pfhbbbbht to them. In the Pleistocene (mid-‘70s), I had a gas stove with a pilot light so I could proof bread in the oven in cold weather. My crappy uninsulated 1910s apartment kitchen turned into an oven in the summer, and bread dough would rise in half an hour!

Edited by Hane
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15 hours ago, usmcmom said:

As a Christian, I would rather my child know a portion of the Bible and have warm memories of learning it WITH me - memories of my voice as we talked about it together and maybe sing songs - than know the whole thing, having learned it by rote from a taped voice. 
 

Also, I hope I expressed that well enough because HOLY RUN-ON SENTENCE, BATMAN! 

Actually, I’d rather my child UNDERSTOOD what they read.

The emphasis fundies put on memorization of the bible feels so odd to me. How does that have anything to do with godliness? It’s just an indication  of how easily a child can memorize things - not of how much (if anything) they understand or whether they believe in the words they parrot.

Depending on my child’s age, I’d be proud of my child asking questions, trying to reason and argue, being able to summarize what they read in their own words etc. (not necessarily the bible, because me and my husband both feel religion should be a child’s choice to make once they are old enough to understand what it is about).


Fundies just don’t seem to care about their children gaining any actual understanding of the bible, which is crazy considering the time they spend on bible time. But outward appearances and ticking all the right boxes without asking any of the difficult questions seem to be all that matters.

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To me, one of the best examples of memorization over meaning being paramount to fundies was the Waller pecan story.

The irony of their stealing pecans, and calling it "gleaning," shortly after the Bible Bee, and using the Bible Bee bag to carry them, led to my making a meme of them saying  something like "We've memorized Leviticus 19:10 - we just don't understand it."

There are several scriptures with the same sentiment, so I don't remember if that's the one I used, but here it is:

Quote

And thou shalt not glean thy vineyard, neither shalt thou gather every grape of thy vineyard; thou shalt leave them for the poor and stranger: I am the Lord your God.

It doesn't mean that well-off travelers get to steal from your crop, it means that the local poor, and travelers back in those days of walking or riding donkeys, and not being able to carry a lot of food with you, were supposed to be welcome to the gleanings.

 

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On 2/19/2021 at 11:43 AM, Black Aliss said:

Because god forbid you actually spend time interacting with your spawn! Like reading to them, or using mealtimes to talk with them and learn what they are thinking/wondering about.

 

There was a homeschool blog awhile back where the mom talked about reading aloud to her kids during lunch. Now, I love reading to my kids, but I also love talking to them. I feel like meal times are such a great time for conversation; I can't imagine just reading to them during this time. 

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17 minutes ago, ElizaB said:

There was a homeschool blog awhile back where the mom talked about reading aloud to her kids during lunch. Now, I love reading to my kids, but I also love talking to them. I feel like meal times are such a great time for conversation; I can't imagine just reading to them during this time. 

If the kids don't go to school and are home with mom all day, there's probably not a lot to talk about. They're together all the time, so there's nothing new to share. 

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Totally off topic: I have two of Peter Reinhart bread books, The Bread Baker's Apprentice and Whole Grain Breads. I got them years ago because I wanted to up my bread game and I couln't afford to attend San Francisco Baking Institute's 5 day bread baking workshop. (Still a dream of mine) But right around that time my doc thought I might have celiac disease and she had me cut out all gluten containing products. It later turned out to be IBS, caused by various indigestible polysaccharides, including those found in wheat and rye, but with the main culprits being xylitol and sorbitol. But I never really got back into the bread baking and when I did I got intimidated by the additional steps of making a biga or a poolish and even during the early days of the pandemic I stuck to variations on Mark Bittman's no-knead bread, but with high-qualitiy local flours. I really need to push myself to learn something new though, so they stay on my cookbook shelves, waiting patiently for me to gather up my courage.

9 minutes ago, Bluebirdbluebell said:

If the kids don't go to school and are home with mom all day, there's probably not a lot to talk about. They're together all the time, so there's nothing new to share. 

There's always the news of the day. My kids said we were the only family they knew that discussed current events and the history leading up to those events at the dinner table. I'm still not sure what their friends' families talked about.

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13 minutes ago, Black Aliss said:

There's always the news of the day. My kids said we were the only family they knew that discussed current events and the history leading up to those events at the dinner table. I'm still not sure what their friends' families talked about.

Who's to say they haven't talked about the news of the day yet? A lot of these households probably keep Fox News or something all day. Not the Maxwells, who are too good for television, but other homeschooling families might have a television. If not Fox, QAnon. 

I don't watch the news too depressing. Too unpleasant for the dinner table, imo. 

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14 minutes ago, Black Aliss said:

<snip>

There's always the news of the day. My kids said we were the only family they knew that discussed current events and the history leading up to those events at the dinner table. I'm still not sure what their friends' families talked about.

Ah, but the Maxwells don’t read or watch the news, remember? They hear about current events by overhearing people discussing them in the grocery store or at church, I guess.
 

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When Steve was working it would have given them more things to talk about. When Steve quit his job there would be much less to talk about. I feel so sorry that the kids, adult maxwells and their kids, never got to experience school and friends. Even if it was just a co op. 
*I don’t include the few years the boys went out for school. 

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I actually bought the stuff to make whole wheat bread, but this thread makes it seem a little intimidating. I found a recipe on-line I want try, but I have no idea whether it will turn out good. 

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I just read the first part of Laura's mixer story and don't know that I have enough bandwidth to read any more.. the line about being treated like a teen age daughter and not a wife was enough to make me angry..

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17 hours ago, GreenBeans said:

Actually, I’d rather my child UNDERSTOOD what they read.

The emphasis fundies put on memorization of the bible feels so odd to me.

Similar to this, their love of phonics-based reading.  Yes, it’s important to be able to sound out words, but what good is it if they don’t know what they mean?(In a homeschooling magazine I found at a local newsstand, someone bragged that “We’ve had no reading issues because WE TEACH PHONICS.”)

Edited by smittykins
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@Bluebirdbluebell,  you might find it easier to start with a less than 100% whole  wheat loaf and gradually increase the amount of whole wheat.  Using bread flour instead of all-purpose helps, too.  Bolted flour is easily found (I found some on Breadtopia), but you can sieve at least some of the flour to remove the bran as the bran cuts the gluten strands.  If you are doing any kneading by hand, you can opt to use bread flour on the counter and your hands as some find that whole wheat dough is stickier.  You can add too much flour as you try to get it un-sticky which will make the finished loaf heavier. Lastly,  you can try a soaker method to soften some of the bran before you mix up the dough.  Bread Illustrated has sections on soakers, both where they talk about sponges and sourdoughs at the beginning of the book and again in the recipe for "whole" wheat sandwich bread.  

Or you can try the recipe for real 100% whole wheat bread that @sparkles posted the other day.  

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36 minutes ago, smittykins said:

Similar to this, their love of phonics-based reading.  Yes, it’s important to be able to sound out words, but what good is it if they don’t know what they mean?(In a homeschooling magazine I found at a local newsstand, someone bragged that “We’ve had no reading issues because WE TEACH PHONICS.”)

My GD is 6 and in 1st grade. She attends an American International school in Latin America. She is bilingual and has been learning to read and write in both Spanish and English. It took a really long time (my opinion) for her to become a fluid English reader with the different sounds the letters make as compared to those in Spanish, but last year they placed her in a K/1 reading class because of her large vocabulary and comprehension skills. She could always tell you exact what was going on in a story and why, or what might happen next. The school was far less concerned about the mechanics of reading. And of course once it clicked, she soared. 

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