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Making batters

What is a crêpe (pronounced with a hard “ep”, not “ape”) and where did it come from?

A crêpe is a feather-light, thin pancake that originated in France. A staple in France, crêpes are sold in restaurants, creperies and from street vendors all over the country.  Paris, especially, has crêpe carts in neighborhoods serving up a quick lunch or snack on the go.  Think of hot dogs served from street carts in our country or street tacos in Mexico.

The humble crêpe can be filled with savory fillings like creamed chicken, spinach or ham and cheese; sweet fillings like Nutella, lemon and sugar or berries and cream.  It can be dressed “to the nines” infused with orange liqueur and brandy, then flamed creating the famous dessert, Crêpes Suzette.  Monday is National Crêpes Suzette Day.

The French staple is not just a diverse and inexpensive meal, but also has cultural significance.  In France, February 2, is know as “les jour des crêpes,” a day when families enjoy crêpes together.

How did crêpes and crêpe making come about at Central Christian Church?  The March meeting of Disciples Women found itself without a luncheon hostess.  Fearing disappointment from the women of the church, Ken took the duty of a pastor a step farther and offered to literally feed the flock.

Ken prepared and served lunch to the ladies. Most were familiar with Ken’s culinary skills (he is twice winner of the annual Central Chili Cook-Off) but the March diners were really wowed when he finished the luncheon with strawberry filled crêpes, topped with crème and shaved chocolate.

The March lunch was the inspiration for Saturday morning’s “hands-on” cooking class. 

Several batters were used in preparing the crêpes and a variety of toppings and fillings, both sweet and savory were served to accompany the finished product. Strawberries and whipped cream, Nutella, blueberries and crème fraiche along with Russel Church’s savory filling of mushrooms, spinach, leeks and thyme.

Following the class everyone sat down to a brunch of coffee, juice, eggs, bacon and the star of the morning’s menu— crêpes.

Alton Brown’s Foolproof Recipe.

2 large eggs

3/4 cup milk

1/2 cup water

1 cup flour

3 tablespoons melted butter

Butter, for coating the pan

In a blender, combine all of the ingredients and pulse for 10 seconds. Place the crepe batter in the refrigerator for 1 hour. This allows the bubbles to subside so the crepes will be less likely to tear during cooking. The batter will keep for up to 48 hours.

Heat a small non-stick pan. Add butter to coat. Pour 1 ounce of batter into the center of the pan and swirl to spread evenly. Cook for 30 seconds and flip. Cook for another 10 seconds and remove to the cutting board. Lay them out flat so they can cool. Continue until all batter is gone. After they have cooled you can stack them and store in sealable plastic bags in the refrigerator for several days or in the freezer for up to two months. When using frozen crepes, thaw on a rack before gently peeling apart.

Martha Stewart’s Simple Crêpes

1 Cup unbleached all-purpose flour

1 T granulated sugar

¼ tsp kosher salt

1 1/2 cups whole milk, room temperature

4 large eggs, room temperature

3 T unsalted butter, melted

In a blender, puree flour, sugar, salt, milk, eggs, and butter until smooth, about 30 seconds. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 1 day; stir for a few seconds before using.

Heat an 8-inch nonstick skillet over medium. Lightly coat with butter. Quickly pour 1/4 cup batter into center of skillet, tilting and swirling pan until batter evenly coats bottom. Cook until crepe is golden in places on bottom and edges begin to lift from pan, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Lift one edge of crepe with an offset spatula, then use your fingers to gently flip crepe. Cook on second side until just set and golden in places on bottom, about 45 seconds. Slide crepe onto a paper towel-lined plate.

Repeat with remaining batter, coating pan with more butter as needed, and stacking crepes directly on top of one another. Let cool to room temperature before using, wrapping in plastic wrap and refrigerating up to 5 days, or freezing up to 1 month.

What better way to say “Happy Mother’s Day” than to gather in the church kitchen sharing cooking skills and enjoying brunch together.

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Michelle Kinder

The annual Juliette Fowler Communities Visionary Women lunch was held Friday at the Omni Hotel in downtown Dallas. The luncheon, benefiting the children, youth and older adults at Juliette Fowler Communities was attended by several members of Central Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) to help support Fowler’s contributions to the community. Central’s pastor, Reverend. Dr. Ken Crawford, gave the invocation. 

This year’s Visionary Woman, Michelle Kinder, is the youngest recipient of the philanthropical award.

Michelle is former director of Momentous Institute, a service organization of more than 600 business and community leaders committed to transforming kids’ lives. In 2018, Michelle was named one of the Faces of Hope by the Grant Halliburton Foundation. She has been featured in “Time Magazine,” “Huffington Post,” “Dallas Morning News,” PBS and more. 

“The perfect combination of passion, knowledge, poise, authenticity, warmth, and humor, Michelle holds her audiences in the palm of her hand.  Each time I hear her speak, I feel moved, challenged, and spellbound.  She’s masterful, relatable, and relevant.  Tina Payne Bryson, PhD, co-author of “The Whole Brain Child,” “No Drama Discipline,” and “The Yes Brain” said in an endorsement of Michelle’s personality and presentation.

At Friday’s luncheon, Michelle shared how she learned the importance of diversity and community service while growing up in Guatemala, the child of missionary parents.

During her magical presentation, Michelle brought the teary-eyed audience to a standing ovation with her heartfelt talk about her dedication to community service, learned from her mother and father. And, of the grief that lives within when people have experienced the loss or losses of loved ones, especially before their time, as she, just like Juliette Peak Fowler, has experienced in her personal life.

During the afternoon, Fowler’s Master Gardeners were recognized, and Abbey Widick received the Faith and Service Award. Attendees watched a video presentation, “Love Grows at Fowler” and each guest went home with a memento of wildflower seeds.

The luncheon, currently in its seventh year, is an anticipated Dallas event held annually at the Omni Dallas. Beautiful table decorations and a menu featuring Riesling Pear Salad, Honey Glazed Chicken Breast and Almond Cremeux were enjoyed during the program. 

The Reverend Virzola Law of Northway Christian Church gave the benediction.

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“Living in a scientific age, part of our responsibility as thinking people of Faith is to proclaim that Faith is not the enemy of reason, logic or the scientific method - these things are given to us by God for our blessing. As people of Faith we do well to trust reason and logic, while also remaining open to mystery and miracles,” was the message delivered by Rev. Dr. Ken Crawford Sunday morning at Central Christian Church, (Disciples of Christ) in Dallas.

Worship ended with the choir and congregation singing “What a fellowship, what a joy divine, leaning on the everlasting arms.” Members were invited to take flowers, as a remembrance, from the Easter trees before gathering in Fellowship Hall for another celebration of the joy shared by those attending Central.

Although the congregation had to say “good-bye” to long time member Frances Mosier and wish her well on her new adventure, moving to Oklahoma to be closer to family, members had the opportunity to visit with dear friend, Bob Boyles, as he celebrates his 89th birthday.  Bob recently joined his daughter in McKinney, Texas so Central doesn’t see him as often as they once did. Yesterday was truly a celebration of Central’s family.

If you are looking for a church family, look no farther.  Visit Central! Everyone is welcome! There is a new children’s choir and a summer drama camp where your children are welcome, a colorful, professionally tended nursery where your babies and toddlers are welcome, a dog park and Sunday dog park worship service where your dog is welcome and co-working space where your lap-tap is welcome. There are Sunday School classes, twelve step programs, senior field trips, a wellness center and more.

Sign up for Kirsten’s graceful aging class Thursday or Pastor Ken’s crepe making class next Saturday.  There is something for everyone at Central!  For more information contact Shelia at   

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Ken Crawford

Howdy folks! Bonjour à tous!

Two-time winner of Central Christian Church Chili Cook-off, Pastor Ken Crawford will take you from Texas to France in his crêpes cooking class Saturday morning, May 4 at 10 a.m.

Held in the church kitchen, this class is just in time for National Crêpe Suzette Day, observed on Monday, May 6th and for you guys, just in time for Mother’s Day, observed on Sunday, May 12.

Imagine the kudos you will get when you serve a “breakfast in bed” of delicate, golden crêpes topped with fresh fruit and crème!  

You loved Mary’s Instant Pot Class and you will love Ken’s Crêpes Class! Enjoy learning to prepare both savory and sweet variations of this classic staple of the French menu. Then sit down to a French Cafe’ brunch.  

Plan to join the fun! Although there is no set fee for the class, a donation at the door will go toward the outreach programs that Central supports within the community. Please reserve your space by Wednesday, May 1.

For more information contact

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Chair Yoga

“It begins with the breath,” Kirsten Joy Burch said, as she led the “aging gracefully” class through a series of breathing exercises Thursday afternoon at Westside Wellness

Slow and deep breathing from chest to stomach, counting inhales and exhales to breathing in one nostril and out the other began the one-hour session of gentle moves and stretches that Kirsten, a holistic wellness lifestyle consultant, assures will improve balance, expand mobility and relax facial muscles that will soften lines and wrinkles.   

Although there was nothing strenuous or difficult in the session, some of us, like me, who as a writer spends far too many hours sitting at a computer, felt the results the following day which proves there is benefit to the chair yoga practice.   

The session, ending as began, with breathing and meditation, was just enough that everyone was anxious to sip the refreshing water infused with citrus, mint and cucumber that vibroacoustic therapist, Denae Richards, had prepared for the class.

You need no special equipment or clothing.  As you can see by the photos the exercises can be done anywhere—living room, dining room, at your desk, on your porch, wearing everyday clothing like loose-fitting capris or stretchy pants.

If it sounds simple, it’s because it is! Simple seated movements combined with mindful breathing help improve your immune system through your lymphatic system.  Joints are lubricated and circulation improved through gentle stretches. Strength and balance are improved with standing poses, even holding onto a chair. 

If you missed Thursday’s class, Kirsten will be teaching again this coming Thursday at 2 p.m.  $10.00 at the door! 

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Kids, come be a part of the summer fun!  Westside Players Academy will offer a drama/musical summer camp as “Summer Showtunes” will give you a chance to work with acting, singing, and dancing professionals who will nurture your hidden or not-so-hidden talents through scenes, song and dances from a variety of Broadway musicals.

Westside Players Academy is located at 4711 Westside Dr. in Dallas. Camp Directors for the exciting two-week session are Lois Leftwich and Tim Caffee.

Lois has a long and varied career in performing and teaching. Originally from Dallas, Lois took a 30-year detour through New York and Connecticut where she did numerous commercials, worked in daytime drama and off-off Broadway. She also developed her love of teaching in Connecticut and has led a variety of musical theater and acting camps for young children and teens. She taught acting, improvisation, musical theater and film making at the Regional Center for the Arts, a performing arts high school in Connecticut.  Since returning to Dallas, Lois has taught for The Junior Players, Dallas Children's Theatre and Park Cities Dance. She has also been busy on stage in "A Civil War Christmas," at Theatre Three, “Catch Me If You Can,"at Uptown Players and "The Wedding Singer" at Theatre Three. She is delighted to bring her experience and technique to young Dallas performers this summer at Westside Players Academy's, “Summer Showtunes” camp.

Tim is an accomplished pianist and music director. Originally from Norfolk, Virginia, he worked with Hurrah Players on numerous productions including “Godspell,” “Hello Dolly” and “Sound of Music.”  In Dallas, he was Associate Music Director for Greenhill School spring production of “Cry Baby.  While a long-term substitute teacher for Highland Park Middle School, he worked with students on the production of “James and the Giant Peach.”  Currently a teacher with Highland Park ISD, Tim loves working with young actors on nurturing and bringing out their best talents and that is apparent by their reaction to Tim’s mentoring.

Parents, this camp is directed at Middle School Students, those who have completed 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th grades. It will begin on July 8 and will be held daily Monday - Friday from 9 a.m. till 3 p.m. through July 19.  The big finale will be Saturday, July 20, when family and friends can come and watch a professional on-stage performance to see what your child achieved at summer camp.

The cost for this two-week program is $250.00 per child with discounts given for two or more children in the family to make this affordable to a variety of family budgets. Scholarships are also available so that no one is left out of this fantastic experience.  Visit Westside Players Academy or call 214-526-7291 for more information.

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Some members at Disciples Crossing Camp in Athens, Texas

Disciples Women of Central Christian Church will wrap up the year and adjourn for the summer with the annual  salad luncheon on Tuesday, May 7.

Anne Pogson will read an excerpt from the newly released, best seller “The Matriarch: Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty” by Susan Page.

The book examines not only Barbara Bush’s public persona but also less well-known aspects of her remarkable life. As a girl in Rye, New York, Barbara Bush weathered criticism of her weight from her mother that left lifelong scars. As a young wife, she coped with the death of her three-year-old daughter from leukemia, a loss that changed her forever. In middle age, she grappled with depression so serious that she contemplated suicide. And as first the wife and then the mother of American presidents, she made history as the only woman to see -- and advise -- both her husband and son in the Oval Office.

As Texas women, we will surely enjoy knowing more about this remarkable person— her accomplishments, struggles, and contributions that will cement her as one of the most unique and influential women in American history.

You don’t have to be a member of Central Christian Church, or any church for that matter, to join this group of welcoming women who serve the community by providing outreach and support to local charities.  Juliette Fowler Communities, Genesis Women’s Shelter, Maple Lawn Elementary School, Austin Street Center and North Dallas Shared Ministries are a few of the non-profits where the women generously donate funds and time. 

Additionally, through education, the organization provides opportunities for spiritual growth and enrichment, enabling women to develop a sense of personal responsibility for the whole mission of the Church of Jesus Christ.

Although Disciples Women’s Ministry does not hold monthly meetings during the summer, come meet the group as you may want to be a part of the organization in the fall when meetings convene. The program will begin at 10:30 in the church parlor and lunch will follow in adjacent fellowship hall. There is a $5.00 per person charge for lunch. For more information, contact Shelia Huffman, Program Chair at 

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Enjoying Palm Sunday Lunch at Central

Holy Week Celebrations began Palm Sunday at Central Christian Church with the procession of Palms at the 11 a.m. service. Rev. Cara Gilger delivered the message "We Make the Path by Walking." 

Morning worship was followed by the traditional Palm Sunday luncheon in the church fellowship hall. A classic spring-type menu featuring ham and customary sides was served along with a beautiful array of desserts.

The Maundy Thursday service, “Last Supper, Last Words” will be at 6:30 p.m. on April 18 in the sanctuary.

Sunday morning, Central will participate in the Easter Sunrise Service at 6:30 a.m. at White Rock Lake T.P. Hill. Central Pastor, Rev. Dr. Ken Crawford, will serve at the communion table following the service.

At 9 a.m. in Central Community Dog Park, located behind the church, Tyson Woods will lead Easter Service in the dog park. This is a special service for people and their dogs to spend time together in nature as people sing and give thanks while their dogs run about doing what dogs do. The rustic park is shaded by mature Live Oaks and there is plenty of parking and seating.  Dress is casual and coffee and do nuts will be served.

A light brunch will be served in Central’s fellowship hall at 10 a.m. for those attending Sunday morning’s 11 a.m. Easter service in the sanctuary. During this time, children will have the opportunity to hunt Easter Eggs and play on the sprawling Bois d'Arc tree (something kid's love to do) on the church’s front lawn.

Rev. Ken Crawford will deliver the Easter sermon "Clueless: The Apostles All Failed to Recognize the Truth of the Resurrection."

Everyone is invited to join Central at any or all the Holy Week Services. Beautiful weather is predicted for Sunday, adding to the enjoyment of the outdoor activities.  There is plenty of parking and plenty of seating. All are welcome!

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According to Kirsten Joy Burch, owner of Living Yoga Dallas, aging gracefully may be easier than you think.

Kirsten, founder of PraniLife Consulting, a holistic wellness lifestyle program, promotes yoga and well being education across the Dallas Ft. Worth area.  She is director of the new Wellness Center located at 4711 Westside Drive and will begin a weekly class in graceful aging on Thursday, at 2 p.m. beginning April 25.

There are gentle exercises to improve balance, easy stretches to expand mobility and isometrics to relax the facial muscles that soften lines and wrinkles. And, part of the time you don’t even have to get up from your chair.

Simple seated movements combined with mindful breathing help improve your immune system by increasing ?ow to your lymphatic system.  You can lubricate joints and improve circulation with simple standing poses while improving strength and balance.  You can learn to use props to help you move more ?uidly. 

“You don’t have to get on the ?oor to enjoy the bene?ts of practices for graceful aging.” Kirsten assures.  “Although, after practicing the movements taught in the graceful aging class, getting up and down will become easier,” she added.

You are never too old or too young to take care of your body, soothe your mind, and vitalize your energy. Everyone can participate and everyone can benefit!

Join Kirsten on Thursday, April 25 at 2 p.m. Wear comfortable clothing.  Water will be available to keep you hydrated.  $10.00 at the door.

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Come on out to the Spring Festival

Come to Central Dog Park for a morning of fun and festivity. It’s an Easter brunch gone to the dogs. Enjoy fruit and croissants while your dog runs and plays with other dogs in the rustic, fenced-in park.

The dog park is located at 4711 Westside Drive. Established by the church as part of community outreach over a decade ago, it has continued to grow in popularity with the neighborhood and City of Dallas.

There is plenty of seating under the shade of mature Live Oaks in the one-acre, off-leash dog park so you can relax, listen to music and visit with other people who share your love of animals.

As with all of Central’s church activities, there is something for everyone! Toe-nail trims will be offered. You can purchase a “Spring Fever” T-Shirt if you like. That silly rabbit, Peter Cottontail, will be hopping around the park for photo opportunities of you and your dog with the bunny. 

Marleigh's Friends will be on hand with some examples of the love you might bring into your life if you are ready to add a new member to your household. Named after the president’s baby daughter, Marleigh’s Friends is a nonprofit, volunteer and foster run rescue based in the Dallas area that just started up last December.

You can meet Jenn and Sherrie and guys and girls like Roko, Dickens, Francis and Frodo so that you have a contact when you are ready to adopt.

Penelope, adopted last October from Cody’s Friends Rescue, will be around to say "hello." A few months ago, Penelope didn’t look like she looks today.  She was frightened, malnourished and had lost most of her hair due to flea infestation when she was rescued from a kill shelter. With love and care, she quickly blossomed into the adorable dog pictured.   

A similar experience can be yours.  You may find an unloved dog, one whose life has known no joy or hope, and give him or her a place in your heart.  So be sure and stop by the rescue tent.

All dogs will leave the festival with a treat and you with memories of a special time spent with your best friend— your dog.  All are welcome and it’s all free. But if you wish to make a monetary donation, it will be appreciated and will go to the upkeep of the community dog park.