She laid the loaves with their straight sides together in the bake-oven, and she pressed her hand flat on top of each loaf. Pa always said he did not ask any other sweetening, when Ma put the prints of her hands on the loaves. (from Little House On The Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder)
Another thing I never noticed when I read these books as a child is how very romantic Ma and Pa Ingalls were. It is so easy as children to just see your parents as mommies and daddies and forget that they are also husbands and wives. Pa and Ma were Charles and Caroline before they were Ma and Pa. And, sure, they’re no Gilbert and Anne, but they were a pretty romantic pair. I see evidence of their romance sprinkled like teaspoons of sugar over the pages of Laura’s experiences: a reference to their courting days here, a blush from Ma there, little acts of kindness and love at regular intervals. And it occurs to me that they never had “date night” or ProFlowers or even their own room (which raises all kinds of questions in this modern mama’s mind)! So how did they do it? How did they keep from getting stuck in a rut romantically? I think they just lived life together, listened and worked together, depended on each other for everything. They were best friends as well as lovers. They didn’t have three nights a week of their own separate activities to take time away from just living with one another. I think modern marriages are missing some of that good old fashioned living. We have too many things to do and not enough time to just be together. Maybe we should all take a page out of Pa and Ma Ingalls’ book!