If I were inclined to make a pie, it would probably not be a rhubarb pie. And if I were inclined to sew a quilt ... actually I pretty much know that I shall never be inclined to sew a quilt. This doesn't mean, however, that I am ill-equipped to become a Prairie Girl.
In the introduction to The Prairie Girl's Guide to Life: How To Sew a Sampler Quilt & 49 Other Pioneer Projects For the Modern Girl (Taunton, 196 pages, $14.95), author Jennifer Worick makes mention of making a rhubarb pie about three times. And she reassures us by addressing the reader (you, me): "You are a prairie gal."
Well, thank goodness for that, because, if she's right, by the time I finish the book I'll be able to predict the weather, embroider a pillow, cure meat, braid hair (Ha — learned that one in the third grade!), darn a sock, concoct a night cream, learn to waltz, practice the art of courtship, pan for gold and whittle, among other things. (Whittling will come in extremely handy for all us working women who have loads of spare time on our hands.)
Lucky for us, Worick — who learned all this stuff so she could get back to her own farm-family roots — includes how-to's, sensible tips and party ideas at the end of each chapter, because why not show off your new skills and recruit some more prairie gals!
Seriously though, it's a well-crafted book with some tasty recipes (not counting the recipes for making soap and face cream) and enough projects to keep our hands from getting too idle.
Or, if nothing else, bring it to Book Club and have start a lively debate over whether "Take a Sponge Bath" is something for which we really need instructions.