Thursday, July 7, 2011

Around here.

Days have been flying by, and times have been good. The 4th (well the 3rd actually) brought friends, food, and fireworks, but you know what, I did not take a single photo of the day. I know, I am terrible. But here is a couple photos of what has been going on around here the last two weeks.
Up first is the holiday sewing.
 Unfortunately I dropped the ball on photos of all the projects. Seriously, I didnt mean to but things got away from me this year. I blame general distractions of life. Below are the place mats I made, I heart them. I also whipped up a patchwork table runner, 50 or so feet of flag bunting and three table cloths, all of which you will have to take my word for because...I suck. Look for them in next years pictures. Ha!

And Now onto the food, or rather two of the 17 things I prepared. Yeah, I know, incomplete, oh well.

My Grandmothers rhubarb custard pie. OMG, this is absolutely to DIE for. Fresh out of the oven under some vanilla ice cream it is just as good, maybe better, than the best apple pie ala mode I have ever tasted. Really delicious. Not to mention, fresh homemade pie crust, freshly laid eggs from my ducks, and fresh cut rhubarb from my garden make it that much better. I intended the pie crust to be woven lattice, but got sidetracked during that step. I am sure my children had something to do with it, possibly Mr. T too, it is still pretty and delicious anyway. Recipe to come later.
 I made an easy lemon cream pie too. Sadly no photos, it consisted of a vanilla wafer crust, as not to use up any needed s'more graham crackers, one can of lemonade, one can sweetened condensed milk, and 8 oz. whipped cream. It was spectacular! and VERY easy. But looked a bit bland. So to punch up the presentation I made some candied lemon slices.

I am gonna be honest, I was worried when I first had the idea. I thought it was going to be very labor intensive and difficult. It couldnt have been further from the truth. The seed removal was the toughest part, and totally worth it. Two lemons thinly sliced and seeds removed. Blanched for 5 minutes. Then into a boiling mixture of 1c. water and 2c. sugar. add lemons and simmer for at least 1 hour, though 2 is better.

Remove from syrup.
and let dry 24 hours, they will still always be sticky.
Then I placed them on top of my pie. You will have to take my word on how pretty it was as I am sans pictures.

And now a gratuitous kiddo picture, just because. MAT came to me and said " Hey mom, lets all put on hats and you can take our picture!" so, they did, and I obliged.

How about some garden pics!
I noticed that my dill was looking quite sad and upon closer inspection I found these.

I thought for a split second about giving the ducks a caterpillar treat, then I decided to sacrifice the dill for some potential black swallowtail butterfly beauty later. Fair trade by my accounts.

Things are growing and blooming.
The corn is FINALLY cooperating with me, see "knee high by the 4th of July". It ACTUALLY happened this season! Now if I can just keep the critters out to actually get a harvest. More on that later I am sure.

The kale and chard are coming in beautifully and are delicious! The onion are also looking quite plump...and the weeds are thriving too, I am going to work on those tomorrow...probably.

The beans are happy too.

And I pulled my first zucchini, of hundreds this season I'm sure, this morning. I cannot wait to eat it for lunch.

Much of our days, of late, have been spent in our pool. Thank you to friends who get a REAL pool and have the courtesy to offer up their perfect pool from last summer to poor, pool less, cheapskates. Ha! It is nothing fancy and its only 18 inches deep and 8 feet around, but we love it just the same. As it turns out, 18 inches deep is the perfect height for RAT to play safely in the pool but for the rest of us to be able to float. It holds the 5 of us and that is all we need. Sorry there are no pictures of the children in the pool, they were in for 6 hours yesterday, but I am having too much fun with them to stop and take photos. The story of my life.
MAT is finding his way to putting his whole face in without encouragement and thinks we picked the depth just for him. RAT is a little fish and frighteningly fearless. And DOT, well DOT nearly fell asleep in his ring yesterday. He is just perfectly content in the water, as long as the water is 80 or above, he's a happy camper. Have I told you all what a delightful even tempered baby he is? Cause he is just a happy dude pretty much all the time.

We all just think this summer is the bee's knees.

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