Knitting

A MAN OF SORROW AND ACQUAINTED WITH GRIEF

I kept thinking of that line from Isaiah this morning as I watched coverage of Ted Kennedy's death. The Kennedys have been a integral part of my political development. I became a democrat when I was 14 when JFK ran for President. And I had hoped to cast my first vote for RFK who was assassinated the day I graduated from college.

I went outside and saw this lily had just opened and was filling the air with its sweet scent. The timing seemed so right.


I promise...

Lobster prices are still down -- remember last fall when they were low enough that I even made lobster pizza? Well, we are getting 1 1/4 pounders for $5.00 a piece from a local lobster guy. Which means that for now, lobster is taking the place of pizza on the weekend. This was dinner Saturday

I promise I won't post pictures of this every week!

You can keep the heat!

We don't do heat very well here in Maine. But most years we get a few days when the temperature goes to 90 or a little higher and the great wilt begins. And it doesn't end until our usual summer weather returns. That happened yesterday morning. I was sitting here talking with a patient when I felt the change. The wind direction changed from the south to the west and the humidity dropped rapidly from around 90% to 40%. It was still hot yesterday but that oppressive combo of heat and humidity was gone. And today, we have a delightful breeze and it is in the 70's. Can you hear the sighs of relief?

During the hot spell, the cats moved about the house flopping in one place and then another seeking cool. Roscoe chose windowsills:

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Can you believe how much bigger he has gotten?

Our tomatoes aren't doing much but today tomatoes were in at Chase's. Chase's is a vegetarian restaurant and a greengrocer -- they own their own big organic farm. I called my husband as soon as I heard and he went right over to get some. Because I NEED tomatoes!

Odds and ends around here

Lots of pictures and not too many words today.

Here's how Hydrangea looks today --

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I am in love with this!

Outside, I have had one tomato ripen -- and I have my fingers crossed that it won't be the only one. We haven't seen any signs of the late blight that is afflicting so many gardens this year, but all the rain certainly has not helped anything. The tomato was delicious, by the way.

And the lilies I planted have started to bloom --

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as have the scarlet runner beans --

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For the past 4 days the barquentine Peacemaker  has been in Belfast. This morning it sailed, well motored actually, out to go on its way.

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And finally, here are Moe and Spike quietly vying for space in the sun yesterday afternoon --

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Mmmm, Blueberries!


August means blueberries and we live where Maine blueberries grow in abundance. 

This is a blueberry barren in the fall, what they will look like in a few short weeks.

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But now, we have these --


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Now we are also in an egg CSA this year and we started getting eggs last week --


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Blueberries and beautiful fresh eggs -- the perfect excuse for making a blueberry cake. This recipe is one my mother made -- I found it written inside  the back cover of one of her cookbooks. I have no idea where she got it. It makes a delicious dense cake chock full of blueberries.

1 pint fresh or frozen blueberries
(we freeze a lot of blueberries every summer because it is wonderful to have them in the depths of winter)

3 cups flour 


1 teaspoon baking powder


1 cup (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature


2 cups sugar


4 eggs


1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 325 F degrees. Grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan.

2. Rinse, drain, and dry the fresh blueberries. If you are using the frozen berries , no need to thaw.

3. Sift together the flour and baking powder.

4. In your mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and beat until smooth. Add the eggs, one by one, then  the vanilla.

5. Add 2 cups of the flour mixture to the batter.

6. Dredge the blueberries with the remaining flour. I use a large re-sealable plastic bag for this, tossing the berries in the flour.

7. Stir in the coated blueberries and remaining flour into the batter. Transfer the batter to the pan.

8. Bake the cake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the cake comes out clean.

Enjoy!



An Orange Hydrangea?

To my great delight, my daughter loves the pale olive Aeolian. And that inspired me to look for a pattern to knit for my future daughter-in-law -- he and my son just got engaged a week ago. Normally I don't like the color orange. I never wear it. But something about this color from Colourmart --a 55/45 cashmere and silk  called Jam -- attracted me. It speaks of India to me. So I thought I might see how it looks in Susan Pandorf's Hydrangea. Now this is a fine lace weight, so I am knitting on a size 3, which is probably bigger than the ideal because it is a little airier than I like. And I am using a mix of gold beads and sun charms in place of the dagger beads on the garlands. I like it. A lot.


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Home

I like to think about spaces and home and I think about them a lot. I've written about therapeutic space here and I even have made a start at a little research project on therapists' offices. I read about spaces and home -- books in this area that I really like are: 

Yi-Fu Tuan's interesting little book, Space and Place: The Perspective of Experience 

Clare Cooper Marucus' House as Mirror of Self: Exploring the Deeper Meaning of Home

Gaston Bachelard's Poetics of Space

and I read a book years ago about changes in home design reflecting the place given to women in the house -- I think it had Doll's House in the title but I have been unable to find it. If anyone of you know it, please please tell me.

Anyway, a post on La Belette Rouge set me to thinking more about home and I decided to answer the questions she sent to a number of writers. 

1. Where is home for you?

For an Army kid, this is an interesting question. When people ask me where I am from I always feel awkward because in a way, I am from nowhere though I am deeply rooted in New England where my people have lived since the Pilgrims came here.

It's never boring in Belfast

So the sun is out after a couple of days of clouds and rain. It's warm without being hot, there is a lovely breeze. The rain washed the air so everything is clear and sharp. When I hear voices just outside.

So I go to the window to look and I see a large white plastic thing on the hill. Then I go outside and what do I see? A bunch of guys, probably mid-to late-20's making a huge slip 'n' slide on the hill outside my house.

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a crowd gathers

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© Cheryl Fuller, 2007. All  rights reserved.