Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Got Pie?

This was the best! I have plans to make another this weekend. So, my son, who doesn't really care about desserts suddenly came to love this apple pie. He had two pieces and asked if I would make it for Thanksgiving (my answer of course, yes!) Here's my favorite crust recipe too. No shortening! I use a Betty Crocker filling recipe with lots of extra cinnamon, freshly ground nutmeg & local honeycrisp apples.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Back for More

Always a treat to visit Minnetonka Orchards. The corn maze is great fun. The honeycrisps await. Tonight we'll just eat pie for dinner.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Creature Feature

My favorite insect has always been a wooly bear caterpillar. Other than that, I've spent most of my life shunning and shooing BUGS.  Thanks to my favorite little red-headed critter, I'm changing my ways. My son spends much of his time catching critters and storing them kindly in jars with holes poked in the top, grass, twigs and other bits of nature. This is an intriguing catch, from along the Mississippi river in Minneapolis. I have to admit that an incredible series from the BBC, Life in the Undergrowth has enormously helped me to appreciate insects, even the -pedes. Of course, I did already like them to a certain extent, and that means an 'outdoor' extent, for one cannot have good soil for growing anything, without the help of microorganisms. So, if something is bugging you, think again. It's time to turn over a new leaf, even if there is a big grasshopper sitting on it.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Summer Reunion

This summer's best reunion was definitely with ice cream from my past. Sebastian Joe's on Franklin Avenue, Minneapolis, churns the best chocolate amaretto ice cream ever, and I'm pretty sure they must have invented it. Tongue met velvety richness some 15 years when I was but a very cool college grad living in the area. Today, at $5 plus change for a double waffle cone and traffic jam's drive away, the visit to Sebastion Joe's is still worth it. There simply is no match for this ice cream experience -- and need I say, I'm sort of a self-appointed-expert on the matter? Eight years in-between scoops? Not again. Flavors change daily, so call ahead.

photo by SAS, Park Rapids, MN

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Oktober Calling

This weekend is Oktoberfest at Mill City Museum. My posting from last year was a favorite! I just cannot wait to see, taste and hear what's going on this year. Polka anyone?
(photo taken in Park Rapids, MN - 
where my husband devoured authentic German smoked pork chops and kraut for lunch!)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Hopping too Fast?

Bath time before bed,
the tub that always could be cleaner,
picking up the wet toys.
Hanging a soggy towel, rinsing a sandy tub,
finding pjs and brushing teeth.
Story time? A snuggle.
What we do to get ready for the next day,
the next moment, the next time.
Those rituals that connect the spaces of our day
 are precious and ever changing.

Heavy Stuff

Late summer's rainy weather brought branch-bending juicy raspberries. I'm hoping for a batch of jam.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Lodge Sweet Lodge

The historic Douglas Lodge at Itasca State Park served us many fine meals and offered many wonderful views last week. I'm missing the park today. It's feeling like the official end of summer with school starting tomorrow. We didn't stay here, but were nearby in a cozy private cabin. There is so much to do at Itasca State Park and end of the season was the perfect time to visit.

Sweet Onions Sweet Husband

This post is for my husband who planted a large portion of the garden with onions. I was outraged. This conflicted with my gardening plan. "Hello! How could you have done this?" I could never rip a growing plant out of the ground just to prove my point either. Stuck with onions all over! Along the way, I realized there was plenty of room and I slowly grew happy to have these sweet little onions. So honey, I'm sorry! Feel free to plant your onions again next year without talking to me about it. Easy to weed, fun to dig, these onions are quite the gig.

Sassy Hot Radishes

Misato Solo was a kind and peaceful look at radishes that didn't happen. Now, I'm simply showing off these big hot beauties! AND, I think these are what Misato Rose radishes are really supposed to look like (by the way, I'm admitting that I might be wrong here). This bumper crop took off last week. What a surprise to see these hiding in he tomatoes and onions. Move over chili peppers ... I've got THE new hot!

Gaining Twenty Five Pounds

I haven't talked too much about my garden this summer, although last year, it was a hot topic! I'm still insanely interested in growing and preserving our own food. We've expanded the garden into a sunnier area for next year. Yes, that's for next year. Now to order some good black dirt to fill up our extension. Sun has been an issue in our garden. It seems there's just not enough of it when all of the tall trees are in the way -- so the new addition will solve this. Today, I'll be canning tomatoes. This mighty bowl weighed in at, you guessed it, 25 pounds.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Backyard Artist

Wearable Weisman

I've been pretty open about my love affair with the Weisman Art Museum, University of MN. My dreams are not only about curating the exhibits and living in the building, but also about what I should buy at the gift shop! It's like trying to pick the best chocolate from a box of many. A couple of weeks ago, I spotted this in the case. What?!?! Apparently this mini-Weisman brooch and earrings had been made for the Weisman's grand opening some 15 years ago. How is it that no one scooped this up along the way? I suppose, being in art storage will do that. Upon visiting the artist's website, I was immediately drawn to Chrysanthemum and some of her other work. Ms. Kinghorn looks to be as incredible as the Weisman's beautiful views of Minneapolis. 

Frog, Forest, Flippers, Fish & Feet

Fantastically fun end of summer vacation.

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