Last week was the first bonfire without Donna, the cousins’ mom (my sister). Last year was skipped but then the decision was made to keep the tradition going. It brought the whole family, here and not here, together with memories, laughs and tears.

Halloween week was not conducive to a bonfire or any activity outside, especially at the lake. Traditions go on.

By the time everyone arrived, the drops drizzling from the huge oak tree leaves threatened rain but kept things a little drier. The bonfire was started early.

Dinner was served: Gram’s orange spaghetti, Deb’s coleslaw from Gram’s recipe, French bread with garlic butter, chips. crackers, cheese and sausage, veggies and chips with dips. Drinks were of choice. Tracy is the baker. She did not disappoint with a decadent two-layer Bailey’s chocolate cake.

We ate dinner around the bonfire and in a tent hurriedly set up over the picnic table.

Dessert was served inside with three candles and “Happy Birthdays” for the three birthday “kids.”

The rain did not stop the bonfire or the celebration. But it did shorten the wonderful evening.

We see each other during the year and get together. But not like October when it is just about us.

I don’t have the cake recipe. When I get it, I will share.


You can make coleslaw that will pass: a package of bagged coleslaw mix, a small can (8-ounce) pineapple tidbits, drained, a jar of Marzetti’s pineapple slaw dressing. Mix and serve. Or:

Ingredients: 1 medium head cabbage (grated fine, not mushy) using a box grater, 1 large onion, grated fine, salt and pepper to taste.for dressing: 1 cup mayo, 1 cup sour cream, 2-3-4 T vinegar, 2 T sugar (or to taste), 1-2 T Dijon mustard. 2-3 T milk (as needed for consistency)

Directions: mix cabbage, onion, salt and pepper in large salad bowl. Mix well dressing ingredients and pour over cabbage. Chill and serve with a favorite entrée. Enjoy

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