Sweet Celebration

Every time I think of Paska, I think of the first time I saw it, and I remember the tiny older neighbour lady who brought it to our house. It was many years later I was able to enjoy it regularly. I can’t recall my mother ever baking Paska, but after I married, that changed. My husband’s mother started her own tradition. She used a mixed peel-studded sweet dough and shaped buns into figure 8s. White icing captured coloured sprinkles atop these buns Mom called Paska. As the family circle grew to include more in-laws, different varieties of Paska appeared at our Easter celebrations. Eventually, I ventured to bake Paska, too. It tasted fine when it was fresh, but after just a few days, my Easter bread was dry. I became discouraged. It was better to enjoy others’ baking than to perpetuate discouragement.

Enter social media. I read a friend’s comments about her daughter’s Paska. She stated this one stayed moist and tasty for several days! That prompted me to contact the younger baker, and I learned she used Lovella’s Paska recipe. An Internet search provided me with Lovella’s Paska recipe, and I’ve been using it ever since. There’s something about the fresh citrus flavour that seems to speak of the new life represented by the risen bread. Lovella Schellenberg is one of the authors of “Mennonite Girls Can Cook.”

I didn’t think more about the source of the recipe until I submitted my story to the editorial committee working on Easter Stories and More.

“Please provide the recipe and a photo to accompany your story.”

I was skeptical. Concerned about copyright laws, I doubted I’d be able to obtain permission to have the recipe reprinted. However, one of the other authors, Betty Reimer lives here in Manitoba, and I discovered we have a mutual friend. One contact led to another and I was able to write to Lovella. She graciously consented to my submitting the recipe, asking only that I rewrite the method in my own words. I also learned she shares this recipe with others, too, seeing it as a gift. In doing so, she honours her husband’s grandmother, Agatha, who passed the recipe on to her family.

Thank you, Lovella, for your kindness. I understand the joy of sharing recipes. Even more significant is that we can share the joy of celebrating Christ’s resurrection. Is there anything sweeter than the relief we know when we experience forgiveness? Is there anything more glorious than celebrating Christ’s resurrection?

This good news is shareable! 

I am honoured to have my story included with the offerings of many fine writers, and I trust all who read Easter Stories and More will see God’s grace in a new way. May our words be pleasing to Him!

I’m thankful many of my writer friends and I could participate in this book project. Please visit these websites to read more from the contributors to Easter Stories and More.

March 24 – Ruth L. Snyder https://ruthlsnyder.com/blog/

March 25 – Sally Meadows https://sallymeadows.com/blog

March 26 – Eunice Matchett https://albertastoryteller.com/

March 27 – Lynn Dove https://lynndove.com/

March 28 – Pat Gerbrandt https://patgwriter.wordpress.com/

March 29 – Denise Ford https://walkingwithdustyanddee.com/

March 30 – Marcia Laycock https://marcialeelaycock.com/thespur/

March 31 – Bob Jones revwords.com https://revwords.com/

April 1 – Valerie Ronald https://scriptordeus.wordpress.com

April 2 – Kimberley Payne https://www.kimberleypayne.com/blog/

April 3 – Marnie Pohlmann https://marniewriter.com/blog/

April 4 – Lynn Simpson https://lynnjsimpson.com/

I will soon have a limited number of books available for pickup. Please contact me (204) 371-5183 or via email, patg.writer@gmail.com to order your copy. I also have copies of the prequel, Christmas Stories and More.

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