this view, and a recipe for blueberry butter

Turns out we picked the most beautiful place in the world to call home.  Early in the morning it is these sites that get me.

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Mid day, I can hardly bare to look, because what I see feels like make-believe.  

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And by the afternoon, those beautiful fields are giving us the most amazing foods to dine on.  (The ice cream in the making, is honey thyme and I have to thank my dad for that one!  He sent a weary pregnant woman an ice cream maker…  Isn’t he a stellar man??)

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Yesterday I processed about 10 cups of blueberries into blueberry butter.  It was simple and lovely and it tastes like blueberry pie in a jar.  You take the 10 cups of berries, mash them thoroughly, either with a ladle as I did, or in the food processor, probably more efficient….  Cook them on low for 3 hours or so, as low as your stove can go, stirring occasionally.  Add in two cups of sugar, a big dash of cinnamon, a fine grating of nutmeg, and the zest and juice of a lemon.  Continue to cook for one more hour, stirring every ten minutes or so.  Jar em up as you would jar anything.  Share with your neighbors, the gifts will come back ten fold, spread on some home-made toast with mascarpone, or my personal favorite, wait until a snowy day in february and take a big spoonful of summer.

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knitting at 39 weeks

Almost 39 weeks pregnant now, and I am more pregnant than I have ever been.  It doesn’t seem surprising to me though really, as I have felt a bit content lately, and always thought I would go the “distance” so to speak, this time around. With the weather turned down, just a bit, and the nights cool enough for covers, my spirits and energy have returned. In fact, I am taking advantage of the extra time I have to myself, and I have been waking up very early, much before everyone else for weeks now. A walk in the mist, a few rows of knitting, just me and my coffee and some wool, or a quick batch of bread have been my pleasure.  I know these days will soon meld into sleepy mornings, and not much “extra” will be accomplished, but for now I am taking advantage. Full advantage.

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These are both baby surprise sweaters, neither too girly nor masculine (in my opinion), and neither even close to a newborn size (we are having a summer baby after all). This is the perfect mindless sweater pattern if you ask me. I have knitted over a dozen, and I am never, ever disappointed.  I am promising myself to move on though for there are other limbs to cover on my three sweet children when the weather turns gray.

Here is to another morning to myself, one in which I started blueberry butter and walked in the garden with a cup of percolated coffee while plucking bolted lettuce for all our hens (That is right… NO MORE ROOSTERS! Whew… glad that is over with).  Because truth be told when noon time hits this energy of mine sputters out and I am grateful for two boys who like to play together outdoors, giving me much some much-needed rest.

PS- For all my friends and family please, please don’t ask me if I have had the baby yet.  It is driving me insane.  Sorry if this sounds rude of me to say, it very well might be.

 

 

this moment

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{this moment} ~ A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you’re inspired to do the same, leave a link to your ‘moment’ in the comments for all to find and see.

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black raspberry days

The rain has been consistent since last night.  Consistently dripping, at times pouring, but mostly misting, keeping the air very heavy and wet.  I am quite sure this is just the weather vegetable plants adore.  Pregnant women on the other hand?  Well, we have to take solace in the idea that this weather produces delicious meals to satisfy us because surely, surely, wading through our kitchen to pour a cup of coffee is not ideal.

We pulled our first zucchini from the garden yesterday.  It was short, sweet, smooth, and crunchy.  I can’t help but be reminded this time of year that all this, (minus our tomatoes and brocolli), started off in egg cartons when the ground was still frozen and the air was crisp and dry.  I don’t miss those days right now, despite my previous thoughts.  The most magical piece of art in our garden, and the most spectacularly grown in size, must be the cabbage.  It looks like a giant purple rose to me, baffling me with the fact that her seeds were no bigger than a poppy seed at the start.  I truly look forward to those thick leaves being tamped down into some jars to be fermented and stored for the winter.  I had to pull up a few dozen watermelon radishes this week, handing them over to a neighbors piglets to enjoy, for they were stunted and nawed on by some sort of maggot or worm.  I started a new, this time with french radishes, the little two toned oval-shaped classics that you can envision with butter, or on a tray of fresh raw vegetables.  I hope this comes to fruition.  I have heard the worm bothering me so is a springtime pest so I shouldn’t have to worry for the rest of the growing season.

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In the land surrounding my beautiful fence built with love everything is coming together as well.  Black raspberries have blackened, the juiciest star cherries off of our newly discovered cherry tree have dripped down our chins, at least the ones the birds havent carried away, and little apples are beginning their life way up our of our reach.  Everything is thick and thorny and damp and mysterious.  We spend a lot of time just wandering.  Slowly mind you, but when you are 3 or 4, slowly is preferable anyways.  So we get along just fine most of the time.  Yesterday, one of these slow stops allowed us to investigate a flitting bird traveling in and out of a brambly berry bush.  It was a lovely find.  Piles of ripened berries are always toted around but mostly enjoyed at the time of picking.  So many interesting insects are plucked up and thoroughly examined.

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This is a lively, lively time of year.  

 

mona lisa

Something changed over the last week.  I went from a patiently waiting, almost happily full of baby pregnant woman, to a ticking time bomb.  My attitude was starting to decline, the heat was really bothering me, I got a nasty case of poison ivy, none of my clothes seemed to cover my entirety, and I had (have) some sporadic sciatica pain that was absolutely crippling causing me to hobble until noon everyday or anytime I had to sit in the car for any length of time.  You see, the problem is that I was two weeks early with both my boys.  And now, with that day approaching, and a super moon in the mother sign behind us, I have started the waiting game.  Oh yes, it has begun.  But, we all know this is silly and illogical and well, detrimental to myself and anyone who crosses my path.  When asked when I am due, I simply mutter soon.  It feels a bit rude and rash, but I can’t help myself.

Then my parents came to visit.  We gardened and cleaned and the boys were so happily entertained, digging holes and adventuring deep in the woods.  Meals were cooked for me and cleaned up afterwards too.  There was a lot of laughing, and a lot of commiserating, and I felt oh so much better.  Then they left, and I tried to hold my chin up.  But luckily it started to droop only in time for more family, sweet dear missed family that lives much too far away, to remind me of what it is I am waiting for.

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These sweet children played around all day yesterday with an ease I didn’t know existed in cousins.  The grown folks cared for me so gently, I swear I felt like a child myself.  A much-needed reaffirmation that this baby will enter the world so loved already, and that of course, of course I can hold out for that.  It is some what of a gift to allow this babe to choose his or her birthday and I am rejuvenated enough now to do this, with at minimal a mona lisa smile on my face.  I can manage that I think…