Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Portrait, Red Rubies, Coffee Break, Date ?

1. I love this photo that Tess made of our daughter, Claire with her niece. The lighting reminds me of a Rembrandt portrait.
2. The last handful of raspberries are a treasure found amidst the dying canes.
3. I enjoyed coffee with our pastor and some of the older women. Much wisdom and insight there. * I use the term, "older" loosely to include myself.
4. Time to kill, so Steve and I wander around the big box store. No cart, just wandering. We end up with a random assortment of oddities in hand at the express lane. The cashier studies our faces to see if we are old enough to buy the knife.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tess, Chicken Soup, To the Trunk

1. Tess comes out with the funniest remarks, which crack me up because she is the youngest in the family and rather on the quiet side. Today she quotes "Monk", entirely out of the blue, and has us all laughing.
2. Another blustery day. A good day for the first of this season's chicken soup.
3. We head to the trunk where our winter clothes have been stored. I forgot that I had two pair of corduroys and now I feel like I have something new.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Forsythia, Falling Leaves, Whatever (well, sort of)

1. Poor little Forsythia is confused. It has set out its yellow flowers in September. Pretty, sweet thing.
2. Although it's blustery and very windy, the leaves still appear to float down in slow motion.
3. I'm glad to know I am mellowing with age. The kids want to tie-dye in the kitchen, sure! You want to keep a puppy in your bed at night, no problem! The kitchen floor is overdue for a wash, it will get done sometime! I used to be more uptight about these kinds of things. Either I'm getting tired or wiser, or a little of both.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Enjoy, Droplets, Garden, Fight!

1. Trying to decide if "enjoy" is the right word to use in describing how I enjoy our Sunday sermons. But enjoy it I do, so enjoy I will use!
2. Morning sun breaks through the mist and the world is a watery jeweled spectacle. Sun-filled droplets dazzle my eyes as we drive down the road.
3. The rain-softened earth yields easily to our shovels. Chelsea, Tess and I clean up the vegetable garden and we plant a crop of winter rye. This once ugly bed is now pleasing to the eye.
4. I head the mower straight through their tomato fight and feel lucky not to get hit.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Saturday, Duo Parnas, Potato Soup

1. The rain continues on this excellent, rainy Saturday. So we head downtown to the used bookstore and browse to our hearts content.
2. Our friends have sent us a copy of their newest CD, Gare Du Nord. I have a second listen while baking today and it is so exciting to hear what they have done. Beautiful, gifted musicians.
3. First we are 3, then 4, then 6, then 7 for dinner. Our quiet, cozy, potato soup meal takes on a gathering which is unexpectedly perfect.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Rain, Rain, Both right and wrong

1. The rain comes in the night and sounds so beautiful.
2. The day is gray and rainy, casting a subdued atmosphere over all. Sometimes I just really like these kinds of days.
3. Little ones recite their multiplication tables for 2's with pride. When asked to write the numbers, most of them reverse all the double digit numbers so that 12 becomes 21. It looks like this: 2, 4, 6, 8, 01 ,21, 41, 61, 81.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Hushed, Energized, Play With Me

1. Walking in the dusk of first light, the air is still, the leaves are quiet and mist has settled in all of the valleys and hollows.
2. 98% humidity (ugh) and by late afternoon I am limp. A refreshing shower changes everything and I am energized.
3. Puppy behaves like a plaything and everyone is willing to stop whatever they're doing and play. Such power a cute puppy has over people.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Puppy, Intriguing, Summer/Autumn

1. A dear, sweet, innocent little puppy is spending the night. Sweet brown eyes; floppy, silky ears; fat round belly.
2. Studying Acts 1:6-11. The ascension. Thoughts fill my head, leading to questions, leading to truths, leading to more questions...this is one thing that I love about studying the Bible.
3. Summer-like evening, to bed with the windows open once again, crickets lull us to sleep.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

September Bloom, Alive!, Baby Wins

1. The sweet, little miniature geranium I bought last spring has finally decided to bloom.
2. The trumpet vine lives!! After receiving the "trim of good intentions" by an unnamed family member, and me mourning over the loss of my beautiful vine, it sprouts anew. I am overjoyed.
3. Steve comes in from work, glances at me and says, "So'd that little baby whoop your butt today?".
Funny concept, that.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Gingerbread, Calico, Pink Sky

1. Allspice, cloves, ginger, cinnamon, molasses and brown sugar...spicy sweet gingerbread weather. I inhale deeply as I mix ingredients.
2. Bolts and bolts of cotton calicoes line the walls from floor to head. The fabrics are inspirational, and I feel the overwhelming need to create something!
3. Pretty pink sky in the morning and evening is the consolation prize for shorter daylight.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Picnic, Family, Hit it Really Hard

1. Sunday picnic in the park. Young mothers group to one table and share their experience while their little ones do the same.
2. Our children are all here.
3. The guys bring a male element to badminton which destroys shuttlecocks.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Eleanor's Mirror, Yard Sales, McCoy, Frankoma, Dinner

1. When I wake up and walk into the kitchen this morning, I see Eleanor's beautiful mirror leaning against the coffee table. Claire and Daniel have brought me my husband's grandmother's mirror (that I love) from New York via North Carolina.
2. 7:30 am, Claire says to get dressed quickly, we going to yard sales. Fun! Daniel is a great driver, we don't get rear-ended at all.
3.I find three goodies. One is this McCoy teapot in perfect condition. The girls don't care for it, but I like its natural element and earthy colors. I like the Frankoma pitcher even more because of its pretty form and even earthier color.
4. I spend the afternoon cooking and baking for a last minute dinner party, happy to have the kitchen alone to do my "thing".

Friday, September 18, 2009

Guide, Hungry, John Adams

1. I happen to bring along "The Master List" which, by default, puts me in the know and I am able to help people find their way.
2. Watching a room full of little kids eat lunch, quite amusing. In my college days of student teaching, this used to gross me out. Thirty-two years later, it's plain funny.
3. I wondered how a movie series on John Adams could be described as riveting, but it is! After reading American Creation by Joseph Ellis, this movie is a great follow.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Misty, Girls' Play, Mensa Invitational, Tired

1. The rain finally comes, in teasingly small amounts. I walk to the mailbox in the rain just to feel it on my skin.
2. Chelsea spends the day and Baby L. entertains us with her adorable expressions.
3. B. sends me a list of clever word plays where people have changed only one letter in a word, thereby creating a new word with a new definition. These give me a good laugh.
4. The kind of tired when I fall into bed and instantly am asleep. A well-earned, good kind of tired.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Bluebird, Old Friends, Autumn Cheesecake, Heavenly Scent

1. Flashes of blue out the window mean the bluebirds are in the garden. My favorite bird, I always stop to admire them.
2. A visit with longtime friends, stories told, laughter around the table.
3. She is baking bread for lunch and it smells wonderful as we walk in the door.
4. Delicious pumpkin cheesecake with a perfect, spicy crust.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Unconditional Love, Sealed, In Demand

1. I smile at baby, baby smiles back. It would be wonderful if all relationships were this simple.
2. Click, Click, Click...the jars of applesauce reward me with this sound when I'm done canning.
3. The phone rings a lot today and our already full schedule becomes fuller. This is a good thing, right?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Caramels, Little Bug, Chilly Start

1. Kraft caramels, wrapped in cellophane. Nobody can eat just one...
2. I cannot help myself but to save the delicate little bug that sits all day on my kitchen faucet. I wonder, can compassion be learned?
3. Energizing, chilly mornings followed by headache inducing, hot days. I'll forget the day and remember the morning.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Tractor, Leisure, Moon

1. The little tractor off in the distance crisscrosses the field. It is shaped like a child's drawing, boxy, smoke stack in front, high roof covering, putt-putting rather fast, as a child would move it.
2. I migrate towards the sun warmed porch, sit and rock and do nothing.
3. Suspended reality for 97 minutes watching the movie, Moon. Excellent sci-fi, haunting music score and superb acting by Sam Rockwell.

Ah! Sunflower by William Blake

Ah Sunflower, weary of time,
Who countest the steps of the sun;
Seeking after that sweet golden clime
Where the traveller's journey is done;

Where the Youth pined away with desire,
And the pale virgin shrouded in snow,
Arise from their graves, and aspire
Where my Sunflower wishes to go!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Weeding, Apple-scent, Monet

1. Kneeling in the wet morning grass, I finally weed the raspberry patch and bring it back to beauty. I continue with the asparagus and rhubarb patches. Now when I look out the kitchen window, I won't cringe.
2. The house is filled with the aroma of simmering applesauce and an apple pie in the oven.
3. Without my glasses on, the garden appears more like an impressionist painting, full, lush and colorful. Glasses on, I see the weedy, sordid details. Today I'll enjoy it with my glasses off...

Friday, September 11, 2009

Grasshoppers, Caramel Apples, Fresh and New, Zippers

1. Mowing the very tall grass, I notice grasshoppers fleeing like crazy ahead of me. Eventually they begin hopping onto the front of my mower where they ride along with a look of relief.
2. Apples on a stick, dipped in warm caramel and set on butter-coated wax paper to cool.
3. Cleaning out the fridge, tossing out tired jars of "stuff" then restocking it with new food from the market.
4. I am not very trendy when it comes to handbags and today I saw something that I've never seen before at the department store. The Dooney and Burke zip clutches have rainbow colored zippers! I've never seen anything like this and thought it was the most clever thing. The colors of the zippers are so vibrant and every little zipper tooth is a different color, they tickle the eyes.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Angora, Fists, September

1. Leelee-the-bunny's coat has grown and thickened into the beautiful, long, white softness of angora. I bury my fingers in the softness and feel her warm little body underneath.
2. The baby clenches her tiny fists up under her chin when she drinks her bottle.
3. The first leaves are beginning to fall, giving me mixed emotions.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

World's Edge, Patchwork, Red Peppers

1. Morning fog hangs heavy behind the tree line, giving all appearances that nothing exists beyond the trees and the world ends right there.
2. The fields have been hayed once again. From the hill, I see a pretty patchwork impression of cut fields separated by hedgerows.
3. Stuffed peppers with dinner tonight. Mom made these for me while I was in NY and I love, love, love them so I made more. White bread cubes, Parmesan, basil, garlic, eggs, olive oil, raisins and anchovies (optional), stuffed into red bell peppers, drizzled over with olive oil, baked for an hour. These are as my mother and grandmother made them.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Dinner is served, Slower pace, Energy

1. After being away, the pantry is getting low. Dinner materializes with fresh corn, garden tomatoes and leftovers from the fridge. These type of meals taste so good.
2. There is a lot of catching up to do around the house, but baby L. is here, so we spend the day rocking and cuddling. Lovely pace!
3. A room full of happy, high energy, little girls reminds us that giggling is contagious.

New York State of Mind

1. Grandmas, Nanas, Grandpas, uncles, aunts and cousins welcome us and make the weekend festive.
2. Apples, cider, cider doughnuts and smokey cheese. One of the best smells in the world lingers at the apple farm stands. Mom laughs at me while I pull the farm wagon loaded with bushels of apples. "Where will you put them all?", she asks.
3. I stand under the New York sky and think how it has a "feel" of its own. The sky of my childhood has not changed. How does it feel different from other skies? Vaguely, it just does.
4. Gene's fish fries!! Opened in 1960, this little open air stand is the destination for me. Picnic tables are lined up under an overhang with little birds hopping about for crumbs. As kids, we rode our bikes the half mile here for a milkshake. Now I will drive 10 hours for one of these fish fries. Gene's descendants now run the place which is only open from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
5. Made a quick detour to Samascott's Farm in Kinderhook to get their corn. The ears are average in size, but the kernels are large, extra tender and bursting with sweetness. We make a meal of corn, slathered with butter, salt and pepper. This is another place that the girls and I would bike to from our house in order to pick strawberries. In season, they have pick-your-own blueberries, cherries and apples and tomatoes.
6. Claire and Daniel drive up from North Carolina. As adults, it's harder for everyone to get away from jobs, school and obligations to make these trips. So, it's a special opportunity that we don't take for granted.
7. I cook for my mom. At 87, she doesn't fuss in the kitchen any more so I like to entice her with tasty things. She especially enjoys the tomatoes from our Virginia garden and the corn from Samascott's.
8. Mom and I bake an apple pie together.
9. She gives me my grandmother's old, white platter. Faded flowers are barely visible and the 22K gold trim has been worn away long ago, but I treasure it.
10. Steve's brother loves to do clams. Saturday is set aside for the food fest. Steve phones me, anxiously telling me they're setting up the raw bar, hurry! Pot after pot, raw clams on ice, steamed clams with melted butter, clam broth for chowder. The kids are teased into trying a raw clam and none take the dare. A wood fire is started and all the cooking is done outdoors. Grandpa hands me a gin and tonic in one hand and cigar in the other. I enjoy both!
11. We return home a bit travel weary, but glad to arrive. Chelsea, Chad and Audrey have kept the house for us and welcome us home. It is so clean and dinner is cooked if we're hungry!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Vines, Moonlight, Cozy Nights

1. Steve is up on a ladder engulfed in trumpet vine. It is amusing to see him in the foliage, wrestling the vines into submission.
2. The moon casts a silver light onto the landscape. I like the shadows of trees at night.
3. Wonderful, cool sleeping weather!