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April 14, 2013
Reinbeck Courier

I know I have told you readers before that spring is my favorite season, it is special. Spring can also mean unpredictable weather, like we have been having. I even heard there could be snow at the end of the week. The real beginning of spring for me is when the fields are being planted and it's time to dig in the dirt. For other people it might be different things. One friend I have, says spring means the start of garage sales. Whatever it is that triggers it, the warmer weather, the green grass or the new flowers, spring is all worthwhile.

When you live on a farm it seems the farmers are always worrying about the weather, sometimes it's too much rain and the last 2 years not enough rain. I don't dwell on it, because it really is beyond our control. However, this week looks to be a wet one and the rain, or snow will be welcomed. A farmer, like no other segment of our population faces more uncertainties and frustrations that are just beyond our control. Weather and weeds, insects and diseases, government rules and regulations, soaring expenses and the list could go on and on. They worry about when to plant and then worry if it will come up. We spray the crops and buy hail insurance and get all steamed up really about things that never happen. To a farmer the woes are endless..

I have been out of the loop of what's new in the grocery stores, because getting around is still hard, I send Virgil for the groceries by making a list and telling him where he can find it in the store. Very seldom does he bring home something that's not on the list. So I doubt if he would notice any new items.

Last week Michelle brought us a cake that was delicious and it was from a new mix by Duncan Hines. They have many mixes like the old classics, their signature mixes, supreme mixes and the new one just put out this year called decadent mix. They are really special and using their new frosting just makes them more special. The decadent cake mixes are apple, carmel cake, German chocolate (the one Michelle baked for us), triple chocolate cake and carrot cake. What makes these mixes different is they contain a packet that you usually mix with water and swirl the cake, which really adds something to the cake.

These cakes have some extra steps, but nothing that adds too much time in making the cake. Something I like about these mixes is that they can be made into other treats. These can be found on Please read the directions in making the bars.


1 box Duncan Hines

apple carmel decadent

cake mix

1 egg

1/2 cup packed brown


1/3 cup light corn syrup

2/3 cup butter

2 cups quick cooking


1 cup chopped peanuts

1/2 cup reserved for the

top other 1/2 cup mixed

with the carmel pouch.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small sauce pan, melt brown sugar corn syrup and butter on medium heat. Bring to a boil and cook for 3 minutes, remove from the heat. In a mixing bowl add the cake mix, nuts, oatmeal and egg. Mix by hand until blended. Mix carmel pouch as directed and stir in 1/2 cup peanuts. Pour in the melted brown sugar, corn syrup and butter mixture. Stir until well mixed. Stir in carmel pouch with peanuts. Spread evenly into a 9 X 13 inch pan. Press remaining peanuts onto surface of bars. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately press down on surface of hot cooked bars with spatula. Cool and refrigerate before cutting. Can put a slice of apple on before serving.

"Tomorrow is not promised us, so take today and make the most of it."



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