Saturday, July 30, 2011

The jam-making machine is back online!

...with some assistance from the IBH, of course.

Picked up 8 packs of beautiful blackberries, and a lapful of black velvet apricots on the last trip to the farmer's market. Decided they might blend together nicely, and be complemented with a touch of warm spice... time to experiment!

The blackberries...

Popped one in my mouth and decided I did NOT like blackberry seeds, so just about killed myself separating the juice and pulp from the skins and seeds. I'm sure there is an easy way to do this, but could not think of one for the life of me, so basically forced them through a sieve with a spoon. Pretty darn primitive.

Some lovely puree of black velvet apricots...

Swirl them together in my treasured Le Creuset pot...

Add lemon juice for acidity and the calcium water that is Part I of the Pomona's Pectin process. Bring to a boil, stir in sugar with Part II of Pomona's Pectin, taste, add more sugar as needed, add cinnamon and nutmeg to taste, test for gelling, pour into hot sanitized jars, process in boiling water, seal... then leave the jars on your counter so you can caress them lovingly each time you pass by (and make all the people who visit your home jealous).

Cannot wait to start cracking into these.

Monday, July 18, 2011


I'm not a huge fan of heat, but there is something deliciously languid about long summer days. You can almost pretend you're a kid looking at three months of uninhibited freedom when you still have several hours of daylight left after a full workday. We try to make it down to the community pool a few times each week. Rachel's been practicing her crab crawl.

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Growing up in the Deep South, I had zero exposure to sushi and zero desire to ever try it. The idea of raw fish was just too "icky" for me. After moving to California, I gave it a try and decided it was fabulous, fabulous stuff. It's amazing how much your environment can shape your attitudes about things. Makes you wonder how we might be different under different circumstances. Anyway, we went out to sushi last night, chasing after a sense of normalcy that has been a little too rare of late.

Mmm. Good.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Carrots on sticks

Sometimes you just need things to look forward to in order to keep yourself moving forward. We had to push out our honeymoon to Costa Rica, but haven't given up on it yet; can't wait to take in sights like this.

And as consolation for having to push it out in the first place, a couple nights here:

It all makes it so much more bearable.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


We recently got IBH a Neti pot:

which, to be fair, does look suspiciously like a teapot, so IBH graciously allows Monkey to play with the "teapot" in her bath.

The other morning, IBH is using the Neti pot for its originally intended purpose, and in that moment of vulnerability (I don't know what else to call it when you've got a spout shoved into a nostril and water streaming out the other side) Monkey walks into the room, sees him doing his thing, and demands to know...

"Hey, what are you doing with my teapot?!?!?!?"

Monday, July 11, 2011

I could smell lawsuits a-brewing

Yesterday, my Irish Boxer Husband and I were talking about how people I meet seem to feel compelled to share their deepest, darkest secrets within the first ten minutes of shaking my hand. My first visit to a new primary care doctor resulted in finding out about the saga of their pregnancy successes and tragedies (and I was not there for anything fertility-related). A makeup artist I hired for our wedding gave me a dollar-by-dollar rundown on how much she gets (or doesn't get, depending on the month) in child support from her ex-husband, who is now looking to get re-married to his new (insert choice words) girlfriend but is getting laid off and while she secretly loves that the new (insert new choice words) girlfriend is going to have to be the breadwinner, she also knows this means she's not going any more child support for awhile. See what I mean? And I never pry, most likely because I'm not sure I really want to know; all this information is just volunteered...

Anyway, the IBH suggested I may need to pursue a degree in psychology so I can let people tell me things for a living. My first reaction was "hmmm." My second reaction was "wouldn't work." "Why not?" he asks. Well, because this would be me, of course:

Ribbon cutting

Giving this whole blog thing another go. Had started one back in the early 2000s when it was the "in" thing to do, then abandoned it once life got a little too hectic and I didn't have so much to say, but have decided to take another run at it. I'm going to tap into my Pisces intuition and guess that my updates may be sporadic and rather random in nature. Should be interesting. :-)