As a kid, I won only two trophies and both were for speech contests. Then, as a full-fledged adult, I doubled my lifetime trophy count with a couple of winning apple pies at the Enid’s apple pie contest. (You can read about Brian’s experience judging the following year’s contest here.) So, yes, I am exactly as nerdy and uncoordinated as you’ve always suspected. But I make up for it by having some real pie cred. read more »
October blackberries are totally a thing. Consider them a gift from a mild fall. We’ve been delighting in the occasional, kind of pricy, half pint of berries for a few weeks now. But since these late season berries are delicate and maybe even mushy, they are ideally suited to fall baking.
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Today, it’s undeniable. The maple trees, still green last week, are quickly turning orange. In fact, all of the trees have begun to take on a hint of ochre. Sunlight has starting shining in from the southern-facing windows. Our back yard, having enjoyed full-on sun all summer, is now darkened by shadows most of the day. Autumn is unquestionably my favorite season, but I’m not quite ready to jump in this year. Living in a new place, a not NYC kind of place, has me worried about what the winter’s going to look like. I imagine it will be quiet, probably too quiet, with plans cancelled due to bad weather, and parks and trails abandoned for long stretches. read more »
Even though it’s likely to survive, this dented tin cup is one of the things I would grab in a fire. It belonged to my mom when she was a girl, and that, coupled with it’s supreme utility, makes it one of my favorite household objects. Whenever I use it, I like to think of all the hands and mouths in my family that have used it too. The cool gray patina, the dinged up bottom, and its one cup capacity, all make it special. An unlikely heirloom, but treasured nonetheless. read more »
A couple of weeks ago I celebrated my birthday. Because we now live in a house with a yard, I was thrilled to plan the epic dinner party of my dreams. As it turned out, it was more like the simple dinner party of my dreams, which is actually just thing for an August evening. That night, rain fell for a while early, but the skies cleared and our friends sprung into action setting up tables, chairs, and citronella candles. We started with these peach shrubs; then by tiki and candlelight, had a lowcountry boil for dinner (look for a recipe next week) and for dessert, lattice-top peach slab pie. There’s almost nothing better than a cookie sheet full of pie, especially one made with fragrant yellow peaches in all their summery perfection. We served the peach pie with lemon verbena ice cream, and ate as storm clouds blew through and stars appeared. read more »
The best bit of parenting advice I ever received is this: don’t listen to anyone. My friend Patrick told my friend Lucas that when he had his daughter, and then Lucas told me. Shouldn’t all advice be so simple? You already know what’s up, just do it.
This is my way of telling you that both my daughters had birthdays this week and I’ve spent too much time scrolling through old pictures and crying. Not necessarily ugly crying, but still. This parenting stuff is real.
And where there are birthdays, there is cake. read more »