apprehension and routines

I like to think I am a person who isn't routine bound but I guess I depend on them at the same time. Mondays, which I usually have off, are days where I recover, write and recharge.

Today though I needed to spend half the day in the office, it didn't seem like a big deal but now the day is almost over and I have felt off all day. I haven't gotten anything done or at least that is how it seems. But I don't feel badly about it, just vaguely confused. It's like it's a lost day and I am waiting for my normal Monday to come around.

I have also been waiting about news about my friend. I don't know whether I should be concerned that I have not heard an update since last week. I feel fearful and silly at the same time. I dread what I may hear if I call but at the same time it's so silly to dread something that may not have even happened... Hmmmm.

I certainly have that human habit of pain avoidance. Off to be gentle with myself and maybe make a call.

One of my laughs today "Meditation. It's not what you think"

change of season

Yesterday, the first day of autumn, was a day of near constant rain, windy and oddly mild in temperature. Today the wind is roaring, it's cooler and things are drying out a bit even with the heavy clouds. This is a good thing because I was distracted and let the interior of my car get soaked yesterday.

The rain reminded me of how much I enjoy a warm rain in the woods. The pattering of rain on the many leaves of the trees is sublime. Moving through the cottage listening to that sound casts a special magic of it's own. Cozy and refreshing.

I could certainly use some cozy warmth right now. It's been a stressful month in many ways. And there is just a week left, I can't believe it's almost October. My wish for you all; some coziness and comfort. Perhaps a big pot of soup of your choice?

autumn equinox 2010

So far it's been a great holiday. It's been a bit hard balancing all the things I want to do with my day off and how tired and head achy I have felt. Depletion continues I guess.

Still, I had breakfast outside on the terrace next to the waterfall. It was lovely to sit in the sun and not feel too hot. We visited an apple orchard, had a picnic next to a lake, and did a short ritual welcoming autumn. The apple smell of the orchard was amazing. It was like the best apple perfume in the world. Just the memory of it makes me smile.

Now time to prepare for dinner out [Indian food], perhaps get out a few autumn decorations and try to deal gracefully with the ongoing headache. I'm going to wear my new boots in celebration of the official start of autumn. I am so happy about my favorite time of year being here.

I hope everyone finds some joy today, even if it is as simple as walking in a cloud of apple smell.

knitting for me, maybe

While I was worried this past week I spent some time clearing out closets. I put a lot of summer clothes away, got a big bag ready for charity, sorted and just tried to get some energy flowing. It was all uphill. I did find my only skein of Malabrigo yarn tucked away in a drawer. As I was petting it [as you do] suddenly things clicked.

The weather was cooler, I had worn my suede coat [remember] already this month. I don't have a scarf that I like. I have been in denial for a couple of years every since I had felted [accidentally!] the last scarf my mom made for me. She is in her 80's, I don't know if she'll ever knit me something again, sigh. But I am a knitter and I have no scarf.

I realized I could experiment with this skein. I am fairly short and I do not have a swan like neck. But I love wearing scarves doubled over with the ends pulled through the apex. Is it possible to knit myself a scarf that would still be cozy yet thin and drapy enough for me to wear it my preferred way without making me look neckless? Will one skein make it long enough? We'll see. It may be the worsted weight is too heavy for this experiment. I decided to take a chance, and put aside the latest baby sweater I was knitting and attempt to make something for me.

Knitting for me has not worked too well in the past, we'll see how it plays out this time. Wish me luck!


I realized today if I wait for things to return to a more normal state I may not blog again for a month. Hell no. At the same time I don't want this to become a 'should'.

So I think I'll try for the short quick snippets just like it was nanowrimo time. [Only 40 days until nanowrimo, are you ready?]

An old friend had a massive stroke a little over a week ago. It's been a big, painful, tense time period. I am at a loss in many ways. Strokes don't run in my family so I know very little about them. But I am shocked and dismayed at how quickly and completely a health crisis can change a person's life. I knew this intellectually of course, but it's different to be seeing it first hand. Any calm that I retained is solely because of
mettā. I hope everyone has someone to hug and feel grateful for this day.

Howdy Wednesday

I seem to be in a bit of a daze this month. It may be from happiness that the weather seems to have firmly turned toward autumn. It may be that the miasma of depression at work is leaving me less than sharp mentally as well.

Really though things seem fine. It's my favorite time of year. I am enjoying my knitting. I still think writing is fun and the speed of my second draft is picking up. I am even having dreams about this years nanowrimo.

Thanks to the cooler weather I am back to running. The dirt/sand roads up by the cottage are soft so I only went about 1.6 miles, but still I ran for 30 minutes.

As you saw by my last post it's finally cool enough to turn the oven on and I am indulging in all the late summer fruits I can lay my hands on as well as experimenting with pastry recipes. The garden though small this year has been nice, I'll be freezing a big batch of dinosaur kale this weekend.

Soon there will be details about an upcoming dinner party and we'll also be throwing a soiree to celebrate the new waterfall.

The waterfall was my wife's project this summer and it's almost done. It is finished enough that we can run it and sit on the terrace listening to it splash. Heavenly.

So many things to be grateful for as well as anticipate. A concert next Friday, apple picking is planned and David Daniels is coming to the opera.

So theoretically I should have lots to blog about, we'll see how it goes.
Happy almost autumn to all .

kitchen distraction

When you start thinking 'if I chop my leg off maybe it won't itch anymore' then you know it's time for some serious distraction.

As my poison ivy rash runs rampant on my left leg and I grow thick headed from the antihistamine I am so grateful for the cool turn in the weather. Not only does the cool weather lessen the itching a bit but it gave me a bit of space to bake with some fabulous summer fruit.

Nectarine Galette [I'll be playing more with this one]

Gently toss together.
4 ripe nectarines, thickly sliced
1/4 c coconut sugar
1 T WW pastry flour

[ very much a work in progress, you may want to choose your favorite crust recipe instead]
sift together and chill:
3/4 c whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 c all purpose flour
1/4 t salt

8 T cold butter into dry mix above
until it resembles crumbly meal


1/4 c sour cream
1 t lemon juice
4 T ice water

with you hands toss this liquid with the flour/butter mixture, form into a flattened ball, cover with waxed paper and chill at least an hour.

After chilling roll out a crust 15" in diameter. Place crust in tart pan or on pizza stone, fill center with fruit slices, then bring the edges haphazardly up and over the filling to form a rustic tart i.e. a galette.

Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 40-55 minutes until bubbly, brown and nectarines slightly caramelized.

Cool on a rack. If you care for glaze, brush on some peach or apricot jam over the warm tart when it comes out of the oven.

Serve with ice cream, whipped cream, barely sweetened greek yogurt, nothing....

-even though it's cooler today I baked this in my toaster oven instead of turning on the big oven. This worked well.
-the dough as it is written was yummy but very soft, another chilling stage might have been needed [or roll faster]
-This could be tweaked for any stone fruit, I can't wait until plums are ready for it.