Christmas in Dairyland – Book Review

Book Review: Christmas in Dairyland, Author: LeAnn R. Ralph, Genre: Novel, About Christmas in Dairyland Book. Christmas in Dairyland tells

Author: LeAnn R. Ralph

Genre: Novel

Publisher: Booklocker

Pages: 153

Price: $13.95

Christmas in Dairyland: True Stories From a Wisconsin Farm - Book Review

Book Review

Christmas in Dairyland: True Stories From a Wisconsin Farm – tells the story of a young girl who grew up on a Wisconsin dairy farm in the 1960s. The novel tells the story of a young girl’s life, including her father, who was the farmer, her mother, who cared for the home and cooked, and her older siblings, who both worked and contributed to the family’s income.

These stories tell of LeAnn’s preparations for Christmas at school, home, and church. They also reveal how LeAnn came to know more about her Norwegian heritage and the love that pervaded this tight-knit American family in the mid-20th century. Christmas in Dairyland also includes tried-and-true recipes for many Norwegian heritage foods, such as Julekake (a dense Christmas bread), lefse, fattigman (a deep-fried sweet cookie), and a range of traditional Christmas cookies. The book also includes a recipe to make lutefisk, which is cod that has been preserved in lime. The book also contains instructions on how to make colorful candles with old crayons, paraffin, and milk cartons.

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About Christmas in Dairyland Book

This book is heartwarming and tells the story of a dying way of life. When the author was a child, small dairy farms with 30 milking cows were typical. They provided a warm and loving home for many thousands of families. Today, there are very few small farms left. Many have been sold to developers, abandoned, or taken over by large-scale farming operations. Small dairy farms can’t meet a family’s financial needs. It wasn’t easy even then. These stories illustrate that even though these families were often below the poverty line in financial terms, their love and family relationships were typically prosperous.

The family usually had one or more family members, such as the wife, the son, or daughter, who worked an outside job to supplement the family’s income. The farm provided food for the family, including milk, beef, pork, chicken, and other produce such as potatoes, tomatoes, meat, eggs, and vegetables. Mothers and daughters also sewed and knitted clothing. Farm life created close-knit, loving families who were strong in self-reliance, responsibleness, and respect for hard work. My wife, who grew up on a farm like this, has often told me stories about the difficulties and joys of growing up there.

LeAnn R. Ralph tells of the joy of decorating Christmas trees and making ornaments in her schoolroom every year. Her father’s annual trip to pick the right tree from their stand of red pine was just one of many memorable experiences that formed a strong bond with her daughter. She and her older sister climbed a large pine to remove the top of their tree from the stand of red pines that had grown so tall.

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LeAnn learned how to make lefse from her mother. She tells about the delicious aroma of freshly baked Norwegian bread when she returned from school. Lefse by itself didn’t taste very good, but when it was spread with butter, topped with sugar, and rolled into logs, it made me swoon. I was delighted to find LeAnn’s recipe for lefse at the end of my book, along with other treats.

This book is suitable for all ages, from pre-teens to octogenarians. The writing style is simple and clear. It can be read easily by children of all ages, but it doesn’t overwhelm adults. The writing is easy to understand by children.

LeAnn describes a young girl’s childhood on the farm. She helps Dad with chores and wraps Christmas presents. LeAnn was also surprised when her brother bought Dusty a saddle. They will understand LeAnn’s attempts to avoid wearing heavy coats and boots on warm winter days “just because it might be cold.” Some will also relate to her fear of standing in front of everyone at church to sing an old-country Christmas solo song, which she has memorized in Norwegian. Older people will enjoy the nostalgia and might even cry as they hear how the Norwegian carol affected one older woman. All generations will love the portrayal of a loving, close-knit family as it prepares and enjoys Christmas in Dairyland.

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