It’s officially summer here at the homestead, and not just because it’s been hot as all get out or because the calendar says so or because I’ve picked the first tomatoes and cucumbers in the garden. Edie’s bff Soph is home from Guatemala for the summer and we had our first (of many) river days with the Smiley clan, which is our official measure of the summer season.
Last week was Edie girl’s first week of summer break, upon which I realized I had failed to put together any semblance of a summer plan, which coincided with the realization that my better half was off to a conference for the week, leaving me to wing it alone, with no plan. So I did what I always do in that situation – I packed up the car and hit the road to Aunt Jenny’s in Baltimore. While most of our time up there was spent visiting with family, we did take advantage of being in the city for some fun adventures. Continue reading
The first week of January always feels like such a let down after the crazy rush towards and then relative quiet of the holidays that make up the end of December. We had a mostly lazy last couple of weeks that involved watching many hours of Gilmore Girls – how had I never watched that until recently? – interspersed with catching up on movies while eating hands down the best chocolate cake I make all year. Edie challenged me to an entire day of doing nothing, with an exemption for knitting, which made it doable. Because as anyone who knows me knows, it is pretty near impossible for me to sit still. And to spend an entire day doing nothing? Whoa. Thank goodness for netflix. Continue reading
The last few days have been a whirlwind of holiday activity. In the last 72 hours, we’ve gone from no Christmas decorations to fully decked halls. I’m sitting here enjoying some egg nog in my coffee before I start the Christmas baking. I’m still not entirely sure what our menu for the next two days entails, but I do know there will be cinnamon buns and sausage for tomorrow’s breakfast and oyster dressing for tomorrow’s dinner. Also, brussels sprouts because I appear to have the only child to walk the face of the earth that adores and requests them. Of course, nothing is wrapped, but the day is young. And there’s plenty of nog.
A very merry Christmas to all.
One of our holiday traditions is Uncle Kevin’s Oyster Stew. Years past, he’s always had a nice big pot of it simmering on the stove welcoming us when we arrive for Thanksgiving eve. This year found me in charge of the oyster stew, stemming out of our offer to bring some of Smiley’s oysters for the purpose of making said stew. Uncle Kevin is not the sort who cooks from recipes nor is he the sort of make the same thing exactly the same way twice, so there was some wiggle room in how I made it. He sent me a link to a recipe that he thinks his was based on once upon a time. I took a brief glance at it and then went about making oyster stew the way I’ve been making it for a few years now, based on his as I know it.
It has come to my attention that the practice of wandering around with camera in hand, trying to capture at least part of the magic that is Oysterfest has led some to believe that I know exactly what I’m going to write about here when we get home from Urbanna. Continue reading
I had every intention of showing you photos of the cakes I baked for a party this past weekend, but in the latest episode of my camera drama, it seems the photos I took disappeared into the netherworld. Not one of the shots I took of the baking process Saturday night, the frosting process Sunday morning or the actual finished cakes Sunday afternoon is anywhere to be found on my camera or memory card. None. Clearly, my trusty old point & shoot is not as trusty as I though.