Friday, July 23, 2010

That Was Quick - Sweet and Savory Bows.


For all my boo-hooing yesterday, Flock went and got the huge job done in only a couple of days. Maybe they were giving all of us addicts a worst-case scenario so we'd be even more grateful for this browser when it was fixed.

Anyhow, I'll play a little catch-up.

The day after the flood we were having a movie night here so Michael and I worked to confine the chaos to the sun room.

All the Betty Lukens flannel boards had gotten wet, so we set them out to dry during the day.

I love these things. A leftover joy of childhood that I love sharing with children.

Of course, we played with them as we worked.

So the front room was cleared.

And the family room was filled with any sort of seating we could drag in.

And we watched... what did we watch, anyway? The perks about forgetfulness with movies is that you can watch the again and again!

It's coming back to me now. Alice in Wonderland. Everybody get enough popcorn? There seems to be a little competition going in in this photo.

We were also very happy to share our first harvest of blackberries. We had a band of pickers come on over and it was done in short order. 3 days later, it took Michael and me three hours to pick 5 gallons. We froze most of them.

With the drought, the grasshoppers went through my garden. They are all over the place, a few got in the house, they are on the screens. Just look at what they did to our Swiss chard. Happily, the rains have brought green back to the landscape and they should be kept busier and away from the garden.

A little archery to top off blackberry picking. Of course more time is spent searching for arrows than actually sending them through the air.

Michael and I made this recipe up. The goal? Eliminating leftovers. We judged it to be very tasty.


Standard bowtie pasta, cooked al dente
Fresh blackberries
Milk syrup
Parmesan cheese

Here is the recipe for the syrup.

Get a very large pot, as this bubbles up a lot. Turn heat to medium. Place inside of pot in this order:

1 cube butter
3/4 cup milk or buttermilk
2 TBL corn syrup
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp baking soda

Stir and bring to a boil. Simmer for 7 minutes and remove from heat. Stir in:

2 tsp vanilla

That's the syrup recipe. Mix the berries in some syrup and cook down, spoon over pasta, and top with the Parmesan cheese. Surprisingly yummy!

We went off on another blueberry jaunt.

This time the berries were more numerous

and sweet.

And we could not resist the grand opening of the new Dunkin Donuts. Small town adventuring at its best.

I'd only been to one once as a child. I sampled a plain bagel, and Michael had a Bavarian cream doughnut - one of our very most favoritestest treats.

Good rest, chatting, and the young people never seem to be without a deck of cards. Challenging the notion that poker is, in and of itself, evil.

A visit with my folks.

Led me off to a simple macro wonderland.

They want to know if this is a poisonous tree. They were told it was some sort of wild cherry. Anyone know?

I got to steal one of my 'daughters' to go shopping.

We got Seth a dog tag.

Then we took off for a Pampered Chef bridal shower.

I was the only one who does not own a single piece of Pampered Chef ware. That stuff is quality; another word for expensive. Call me the WalMart Budget Girl, but what a lovely way to outfit your kitchen!

Gorgeous and delicious cake, made by my too-long-between-visits friend, Pam. She needs to open a bakery. Really. Seriously.

Pam, and the bride to be, wearing an apron made by another of my 'daughters'. She needs to sell these beauties.

Where do guys go when girls are at showers?

Swimming, and....

More archery.

I think we'll be shopping for more arrows soon.



Thursday, July 22, 2010



I can't hide the truth any longer.

I have an addiction.

I am addicted to the Flickr and Flock combo platter.

Without it, my blog goes empty.

I went to the forum this morning and found that they are having a similar issue that we went through last year. Flickr changed their code. Now Flock has to rework their whole interface to get the two programs to mesh again. That will likely take several weeks again.

My blog feel drab without photos. A picture is worth a thousand words and BOY! Do I love putting those in instead of coming up with a thousand words each. I accept the challenge, however.

We've done school for the day. Now we are mowing and working outside to try to get things in order before the next line of rain comes through in a few minutes. We've had regular afternoon storms all week. So grateful for moisture! But our canopy finally had to come down, and I miss that. Wish I had some photos of the canopy actually COMING down. You'd have LOVED it! It was really more like 'up' than 'down'. Para-sailing comes to mind. I've always wanted to fly, and we almost got our wish.

I've been canning, gardening, restoring the flooded end of the house back to normal. I got to sleep in my bed last night for the first time in nearly a week and a half. Ah. Bed is good.

Algebra. Have I mentioned I've not been a fan of algebra? But Michael and I are whooping it together. It's fun to do it with someone, hashing out differing solutions. Home schooling is so much easier to learn a difficult subject like that than in public school. Nearly unlimited resources are available here, while school is so structured and limiting. I may end up liking algebra after all.

We've picked about 10 gallons of blackberries from the canes so far this year.

(The wind has just arrived, announcing the soon onset of water.)

As a mother, this is an interesting time in my life. Michael is diving into manhood by leaps and bounds. He is taking over, making decisions, grabbing problems by the shirt and belt and tossing them out on their ears. What a blessing to have a son who chooses to grow up, yet still retains such an incredible sense of fun and adventure.

He may have his first bonafide job with his friends in a week or so. Cool. He has terrific friends so he'll also have a good time of fellowship while earning, and being a blessing to others.

(AGH! Rain is here!) running out to shut van doors...

We've been blueberry picking a few times. I think we are heading out again this weekend. You cannot help but think of Heaven when you are standing there, hearing birds singing, feeling the warm sun on your arms, watching the clouds drift by, popping big, fat, juicy berries in your mouth.

Most of you reading this know what I mean when I say we are all so blessed. There are incredible gifts all around us, raining down from the Father of Lights. All we have to do is look up, open our eyes, and say "Thank you!"

Thanks to the dear friend who sent me beautiful packages of vanilla beans! They arrived today and I'm so excited! I can't wait to try them out, they smell.... sniff, sniff, sniff....
...Amazing! I'll have to hit someone up for a base tonight.

Now I'm back to preparing some snacks for our get together this evening. I am determined to use leftovers so even I have no idea what it will be. I'm thinking something to do with Swiss Rolls (which I must get out of this house) and white chocolate or banana cream pudding.

My apron is a lab coat today.



Wednesday, July 21, 2010



I was going to post an update, but my Flock Browser is being temperamental.

All is going great, just been busy. I hope the browser will be up and running soon. I

I'm canning blackberries today and having a great chat with my sister.