Today began rather early – 3:30am to be exact; one of those nights where sleep is restless as I process the tasks completed yesterday as well as those left undone. I dozed from 6-7:30 and then it was time to be an adult. ‘Please don’t make me adult today’, I said to The Professor. His baby-blues simply twinkle back at me and he doesn’t say a word . . . because he knows that even if I wanted to, I cannot stay in bed.
We’re in the throws of winter here in the Midwest – although we managed to dodge big blizzard, ‘Jonas’, of 2016 and for that I am grateful (I mean seriously, 40-inches of snow in 24 hours?!!). However, there is something to be said about being snowbound while the white stuff tumbles furiously from the sky – it can be magical. But when you live in the country like we do, there is always the fear and trepidation of loss of power that usually accompanies said blizzard.
One last post for 2015; every year I get to the end of December and marvel at how fast the year sped by and then I scroll through my Instagram feed smiling at all the wonderful moments The Professor and I have experienced. Each year has brought us new adventures, new travel, new friends, new experiences – and 2016 promises to be another remarkable year.
Twas the week of Christmas and all through the house . . . we’re racing around like a goose and a grouse . . . I asked The Professor what rhymes with ‘house’ and this is what he came up with – feel free to eyeroll in his direction. Regardless, I know we’re all in the same boat because I see you in my social media feeds. You can run but you can’t hide.
Until a year ago, I had only used persimmons as table decorations but had never actually tasted a persimmon – even though I’ve lived here in Indiana for almost 20 years and persimmons are well-known in these parts. We’d tucked some pulp away in the freezer and The Professor found a recipe he wanted to try – I was more than a little suspicious but he forged ahead and I am now happily eating my words . . . uhm . . . pudding.
It’s been a great summer here at the Smith Bites Homestead; it is the first summer where The Professor didn’t teach during the break and we’ve had more than eight weeks to dig in our garden, work on our home and just simple be – sleep late, stay up late, read books, have friends over, bake, grill, eat and repeat. It has been glorious and was exactly what I needed to fill my soul.
It is not lost on me that while I’m still enjoying the last dog days of summer – hello high humidity and 90-degree temperatures – I’m here with a recipe for pumpkin dip. And it’s the last day of August. And we haven’t even seen September, apples or pears. And I rather enjoy taking one season at a time, thank-you-very-much. And over the next couple of weeks, there will be a glut of alllllllll things pumpkin which will hit the blogosphere, so brace yourself. No, sharing a recipe for pumpkin dip in August is not lost on me.
The days get shorter, the sun sets a little earlier, the temps are slowly creeping into sweater or jacket weather, our garden is nearly spent and over the past couple of weeks, I’ve seen some pretty cute back-to-school photos in my social media feeds. But there’s one more final end-of-summer get-together before the onslaught of football and all things pumpkin; actually, we plan to gather family and friends around our table even after summer ends – and most likely our meals will include something grilled. Sometimes it’s brisket, chicken or smoked turkey breast, but quite often it’s something as simple as a great burger.
It was nearly 20 years ago when I packed up my house in the Pacific Northwest and moved to the Midwest; I didn’t know anyone here other than a few young adults from my church who were attending the same college I was going to attend. August was also the first time I’d ever heard a cicada – and while I was driving through Iowa I thought to myself, ‘Those are some crazy loud power lines!’ I was such a rookie.
The cicada’s are back, the weather is typical for this time of year: hot and humid and The Professor and I have enjoyed quite a bit of time outdoors in our garden. We have already planted second crops of some veggies and we had a successful first harvest of honey from our bee hives – which I will share later this week. And in case you didn’t know, The Professor has a brand spanking new job at a new university: Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis aka IUPUI; it’s been a really good summer.
The Professor and I have been spending our summer working outdoors, digging in our garden beds and fighting off the critters for our share of the vegetables; so far it’s been critters who have reigned supreme but we’re replanting and hope we get to enjoy more than a handful of this year’s veggies. Such is the life of a country gardener where groundhogs and raccoons are abundant . . . much to my dismay.