I assume they are planning heists, but I haven't asked

Guder mariye! Sitz dich anne un bleib e weil! Just a little Pennsylvania Dutch in honor of today's topic (Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult), hope you Englischers weren't too ferhoodled by it. Here is a nice, simple 1-2-3-4 Cake to ease you into the wholesome world of an Amish dairy farm.

Butter and refined sugar, God's own ingredients.

Except ooooops our particular Amish dairy farm has a MURDERED INFANT ON IT! Don't worry, there's a Big City Lady Lawyer on the case and she has short hair like a boy so you know she's all business. I realize this is a bit upsetting. Here, this bowl of Chicken and Dumplings will calm your nerves.

So, look. Obviously this novel was not my particular cup of unpasteurized milk, and I definitely spent some of the more boring stretches of courtroom plot-rehashing debating which aspect of my person was most insulted by it (woman/lawyer/adult human/fan of character development), but I do have a couple of things to say in its defense. First of all, Jodi Picoult personally contributed the cake and dumpling recipes to The Book Lover's Cookbook with notes about living with the Amish and I genuinely appreciate that. These are, without a doubt, the most appropriate recipe-to-character matches to date. I can clearly picture an Amish family of possible baby-murderers sitting down to a slice of that cake.

Second, there's a chance that, as a brown-eyed individual, I am just feeling left out of Picoult's fetishization of blue and green eyes. Every object of affection has eyes that are blue (like the water) or blue (like the sky) or green (like the water, as seen from the sky) (really). Brown eyes can be seductive too, Jodi! Check it!

"The circles under her eyes were a deep, endless purple, a color he had only seen once before in his life, inside a bowl of his mother's eggplant parm."

Third, about three quarters of the way into the book a character who is splattered with chicken blood is described by another character as looking "like you've stepped out of a Kevin Williamson film," and the 90s specificity of that reference delighted me so much that I pretty much forgave it everything. Plus, there are many, many instances of the world ferhoodled. Priceless.

Next up: a re-read of James Herriot's All Things Bright and Beautiful, mostly because I am pretty confident it does not contain any homicide.

A few days before Christmas, Anna informed "Santa" that she wanted a new stuffed cat. This was news to me, but also an easy request to fulfill last minute, so come Christmas morning, a new stuffed cat there was. "Good," said Anna solemnly. "A new member of the Cat Team." The Cat Team was also news to me. Hilarious news.

Yesterday, the Cat Team gained yet another freshman, and Anna spent much of the afternoon giving her a tour of the house and introducing her to the rest of the team.

My point here is that four is a good age.

Two is also very special, of course.