Friday, September 26, 2008

It's a Johnny Appleseed Friday Five

Raise your hand if you know that today is Johnny Appleseed Day!

September 26, 1774 was his birthday. "Johnny Appleseed" (John Chapman) is one of America's great legends. He was a nurseryman who started out planting trees in western New York and Pennsylvania, but he was among those who were captivated by the movement west across the continent.

As Johnny traveled west (at that time, the "West" was places like Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois) he planted apple trees and sold trees to settlers. With every apple tree that was planted, the legend grew. A devout Christian, he was known to preach during his travels. According to legend, Johny Appleseed led a simple life and wanted little. He rarely accepted money and often donated any money he received to churches or charities. He planted hundreds of orchards, considering it his service to humankind. There is some link between Johny Appleseed and very early Arbor Day celebrations.

So, in honor of this interesting fellow, let's get on with the questions!
(I'm sorry the font is so wierd! Today's score is Blogger 1, Zorra 0.)

1. What is your favorite apple dish? (BIG BONUS points if you share the recipe.)
I LOVE apple dumplings. Last October I posted my favorite recipe here.

2. Have you ever planted a tree? If so was there a special reason or occasion you can tell us about?
(Warning: this is sad.) We moved into our new house in December 1991, and the following spring we planted a pecan tree in the backyard, in memory of the baby we had lost in September 1991. That tree now towers over the house, is the centerpiece of the back yard and patio, and has given us wonderful pecans for many years. Ike took a lot of them this year, but he didn't get them all!

3. Does the idea of roaming around the countryside (preaching or otherwise) appeal to you? Why or why not?
I love roaming around the countryside with the Scientist, but I would not enjoy a nomadic lifestyle. I'm too much of a homebody for that.

4. Who is a favorite "historical legend" of yours?
How about a family historical legend? Supposedly I had an ancestor who was attempting to manage the farm by herself while her husband was off fighting in The War (if you're asking "which war?" I know you're not from the South). Legend has it that a lone Yankee soldier walked up to the house, and the dog began to bark. He raised his pistol to shoot the dog. My ancestor appeared on the porch, aimed her shotgun at him, and said, "You shoot that dog, and I'll shoot you." Legend has it that he turned and walked away. Every Southern family has at least one story like that--I hope mine is true!

5. Johnny Appleseed was said to sing to keep up his spirits as he traveled the roads of the west. Do you have a song that comes when you are trying to be cheerful, or is there something else that you often do?
Sometimes I sing a psalm, like the praise song set to Psalm 18:
I will call upon the Lord
Who is worthy to be praised.
So shall I be saved from mine enemies.
The Lord liveth, and blessed be my Rock
And let the God of my salvation be exalted
The Lord liveth, and blessed be my Rock
And let the God of my salvation be exalted

It helps!


Singing Owl said...

I just realized that I asked a recipe question last year about this time. Oh gee...what does that say about me? I never did try the apple dumplings and I intended to...hopefully I will this time. I just ate some cheesy apple stuff and man was it yummy!

I wish I could share some of your Texas pecans.

They say pee cans here. Makes me grin inside every time.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I love your family story.

I wonder if I could make your apple dumplings with wheat flour instead of white.

DogBlogger said...

Great play (including the sad part).

I am so glad your ancestor knew how to properly defend her dog!

EmJayDee said...

I loved your story about the pecan tree. Thanks

zorra said...

SO--when I was growing up we always giggled at "pee cans' when we heard it on TV (the only place we ever heard it).

Ruth--I bet you could make them with whole wheat pastry flour. Regular whole wheat flour might be too heavy.

DB--now you know I really do come from a LONG line of dog people!

emjaydee-thanks for stopping by, all the way from Australia!

mompriest said...

Family Legends are great....I love some of the stories about my pioneer great greats...

Princess of Everything (and then some) said...

I love the story about your pecan tree. Thank you so much for sharing that part of you with us.

Rev Kim said...

I tagged you for a meme, if you feel like playing!