Aunt Olla update, kuchen in Cavalier

Went in to the Hilton yesterday to find Aunt Olla up and walking around her room. The staff is amazed. They didn't expect her to recover so fully. True to form, Aunt Olla has forgotten she was ever bedridden with a bad back and dizzy on pain medication. She is down to two Tylenol per day. In fact, the staff had just finished the paper work to put her in a higher care classification and now they are going to have to have a care conference and lower it back again. 

Never underestimate the determination of somebody who has already made it to 101-years-of-age!

Last Saturday, I met one of my other favorite very old people: Lucille, from Cavalier, ND. I spent years one through four in Cavalier where my father was pastor of the Cavalier Baptist Church. Lucille was one of the elder members then!

I was in Cavalier to perform at the Icelandic State Park for a nice crowd. Lucille showed up dressed to the nines, at age 95, a little tired from having driven to two funerals earlier in the day. After we left Cavalier in 1968, our family returned a few times to visit. Once we stayed at the home of Lucille and her late husband Dan. I think her pancakes were the best ever. 

After the program, Karen of Karen's Kuchens presented me with one aronia kuchen (aronia is commonly known as "chokeberry," a bush related to chokecherry but bigger and of a different flavor) and one honeyberry kuchen. I brought them to the nursery where they were summarily gobbled. I got one piece of each. Excellent. Kuchen is nostalgia food for me since my grandmother made it, and my mother eventually perfected her own recipe, which is at present better than ever. 

The running joke between my Grandma Geiszler and I when I was a four-year-old was that you could make kuchen out of anything. I would look around the kitchen and say, "can you make apple kuchen?" Yes, grandma would reply, I can make apple kuchen. "Can you make....bean kuchen?" Yes, she said, she could make bean kuchen. "Can you dog kuchen?" Yes, of course, I can make hot dog kuchen, she would say, although she mercifully didn't follow through. 

Well, Karen is sort of like Grandma Geiszler. She offers 65 varieties of kuchen, including one I never even thought of as a four-year-old: Root beer kuchen!