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Showing posts from August, 2015

Making Muscadine Jelly

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During the last week in August -- the week when the garden is plowed for the fall garden - not much is  growing but the weeds. Heat and humidity reign. We move at a snails pace because that's about as fast as the wet air will let us travel.
 This is the week the muscadines are fully ripe and hanging heavy on the vine. They are perfectly plump and juicy. The size of golf balls. Rose pink globes bulge. One bite yields and entire gulp of sweet juice. We've been eating them for a month. William loves to walk out and make a pocket with his shirt full of them and eat and share them. He loves to show people the muscadines and pass them out when people visit. Now, we've got to do something besides snack on them. It's jelly time. We've learned to turn canning day into a party-- or at least ask for help.

 This year, sweet friends Bev, Mikean, and Liz joined me on a sunny Sunday afternoon to pick and wash and juice and squeeze and boil and pour. We finished with nine quarts…

Happy Hannah

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She is happy. Always a smile. She loves rhythm and song. She thinks laughing and smiling is the best. She crawls as fast as she can to the back door when the others run out. She wants to be with them doing what they are doing. She eats anything I put in front of her. She east zucchini like Amelia --An entire squash in one sitting. She loves the animals, especially Lucy. She says "down" and "daddy" and "doggy" although they all sound about the same. She loves to swim and take a bath and Lucy's bowl of water. She finds balls and opens the recycle bin and throws the ball in and smiles big. She crawls in the dishwasher. I guess that is what you do when you are eight months old. She looks for William and William looks for her. They are little friends already. She doesn't fuss unless she is tired or hungry. Last year the time stood still. Today, it whizzes by and slips through my fingers!







For The Love Of Coffee

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Coffee. Every single morning, I wake up and, if I’ve slept for three hours or seven, I'm ready for coffee. But, not just any coffee. It looks something like this:

Fill the kettle with water to boil. Take the French press with yesterday’s grounds, fill it with water, walk out the back door and water the flowers and herbs with it. Back to the kitchen. I measure in four heaping scoops of coffee ground fine. They settle in the bottom of the clean glass.  In goes the boiling water rushing to meet the grounds. After three minutes, someone plunges. I’ve a blue mug a friend made me. George, a white one.I pour -- three quarter inch from the top and finish it with cream. Dark brown turns mocha. Good morning world.
Coffee gives us ritual – well, yes it gives us caffeine, but there is a rhythm. I’m sure you know it. You’ve got your own. Fancy machines, a good ol paper filter coffee maker. A percolator. Yes, that is something. George’s parents make it this way and it is makes a mighty fine cu…

But August Ends Tomorrow

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The air is still heavy and hot and humid. Don't want to lift my leg to high or move too fast. Might start sweating. Once the sweat starts, there is no turning back. It just keeps coming until every piece of clothing is soaked through. But it doesn't suffocate like it did a week ago. There is a slight breeze or something that says, "It will be over soon."


August in Tallahassee. It is our "winter". We hunker down and stay inside. Air condition instead of heat. Bathing suits in stead of boots. Sweat and cold icy drinks instead of numb fingers and hot chocolate. 



And, so little grows -- except weeds. Lots and lots of weeds. They sneak up and wrap their tiny viney fingers around anything that stands still and loop around and grow massive and tall. The canna lilies give us a punch of color and the zinnias hang on for the hot ride. 

We start back to our studies and paint and draw and learn. Imagination takes over and feathers and lamps and leather turn into artwor…