Friday, September 29, 2023


By Caroline Clemmons


Moving into fall brings expectations and memories of changing leaves, chrysanthemums, cooler weather, and certain foods. One of those (for me) is crisp red delicious apples. Apples grow in many states—in fact Hero and I used to have a row of 16 delicious apple trees, 1 Granny Smith apple tree, and 1 crabapple tree when we lived in a rural area. When buying the fruit from a grocery store, I usually choose red delicious apples. I suppose it’s a preference ingrained in me by my mom, who always chose Washington red delicious apples when she could.

That reminds me of the only book I’ve written that takes place in Washington, PATIENCE, BRIDE OF WASHINGTON. I’ll bet you saw that subject coming, didn’t you? PATIENCE is on sale for 99¢ for a limited time!

This book came about due to an idea by the brilliant (and fun) Kirsten Osbourne. She wanted a series of a mail order bride in every state.  Books were released in the order in which the states joined the Union. Those of us who knew about the series clamored for the state of our choice—or our second choice if the first was taken. I had wanted Texas, but didn’t choose in time. This turned out to be a good thing, as I learned a lot of interesting things about Washington.

Here's the blurb:

Travel to Victorian America in 1890 for a humorous romance about two people destined for one another, but after a turbulent getting acquainted period. This book is sweet and wholesome.

After a fire destroys the factory where Patience Eaton worked followed by a succession of job failures, she travels from Massachusetts to Washington to marry the man her father chose via a matchmaker. While Andrew Kincaid appears to be a very nice man, he’s older than her father and not someone she wants to marry. Her prospective groom places her in a respectable boarding house and agrees to give her a job in the office of his commercial apple orchard so she can learn about his life and business. But working alongside her handsome future stepson presents unexpected complications.

Two years ago, an unjust accusation ruined Stone Kincaid’s chance at happiness. Now he concentrates all his energy on building the family business. When he meets his prospective stepmother, he’s angry that his father cares so little for his mother’s memory that he sent for a mail order bride younger than Stone. He believes Patience to be interested in his father’s fortune. Stone plans to keep an eye on the attractive woman who’s slated to become his stepmother.

Can two people working at cross purposes arrive at a compromise?


If you’re a fan of easy recipes and of apples, here is a recipe you’ll enjoy—especially the eating!


2 cups sugar

1 1/2 cups cooking oil

2 eggs

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

3 cups peeled and chopped raw apples

1 cup crushed pineapple, drained

1 cup pecans, chopped

Cream sugar and oil. Add eggs and then dry ingredients. Mix and add fruits and nuts. Mix again. Cooked in greased and floured pan.

Makes two large loaves or one Bundt cake. Bake at 350° F for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Cool in pan. Serve warm or cold.

This cake is also very good served warm with hot spiced apple cider for an afternoon tea or winter evening treat. It freezes well if securely wrapped.


Stay safe and keep reading!

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