Last Saturday I had a chance to visit Jamesport, Mo. I love Jamesport and am totally fascinated by the Amish people and the way they live. I admire them a great deal and just am amazed at their manners, kind acts and dedication to their beliefs. Even if you don’t understand them you have to admire them.

Carol and Larry Fitch attend our church and are good friends. They called to see if I wanted to go with them to Jamesport and I said a big yes. We had a ball and started off the day eating a buffet at the Dutch Pantry. Great food and then we visited the local natural vitamins, herbs and other items store. On to the candle store across the street and I bought a Pumpkin Pie and an Apple Cider candle. Then to the grocery store and fresh eggs, wonderful apples, and lots of bulk packaged foods. I love to go there just before winter and buy a big bag of oats. Not only is it cheaper, it is good quality. So with a big box of groceries we headed to the bakery and I bought three loaves of their wonderful cheese bread.

Next stop, the Fitch family bought a glider rocker and a new recliner chair. They will be delivered on Tuesday.

As we left the store I noticed a new 10-by-14-inch cutting board that was beautiful. It is made of maple and walnut and has been totally pieced together with the two colors. That was something I needed for my new kitchen and I was thrilled.

Tomorrow I have to work at the church packing up 30 backpacks filled with goodies for the orphans at the Father’s House Orphanage in the Philippines. It is a special gift for the children and this will be the fifth year we have done this. Then the rest of this week I will redecorate one of the back bedrooms and do some cooking for winter.

I have had a recipe for Cowboy Cookies for many years. It was a good solution to making enough cookies for my five kids to last for more than one evening.

Cowboy Cookies

2 cups sifted flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1 cup shortening 1 cup sugar 1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed 2 eggs 2 cups rolled oats 1 cup nuts, optional 1 (6-ounce) package, semi-sweet chocolate bits

Sift together first 4 ingredients and set aside. Blend together shortening and both sugars. Add eggs; beat until light and fluffy. Add flour mixture; blend well. Add oats, vanilla, nuts and chocolate bits. Drop by teaspoonsful onto greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Yields 8 to 10 dozen.

Camptown Brownies

2 eggs 1 cup sugar 1/2 cup butter 2 squares unsweetened chocolate 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate pieces 1 teaspoon vanilla 1/2 cup flour 1 cup miniature marshmallows

Melt butter and chocolate together, beat eggs and sugar. Add to chocolate mixture. Fold in marshmallows. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Have a great week, stay warm and smile! It helps your face and makes others happy too.

See you next week.

Dixie Ryan lives in Odessa and has enjoyed sharing her cooking talents and secrets with readers for many years.