'tis the season for acorn caps

wishing you a beautiful & bountiful autumn



this book trailer has left me feeling breathless...


fig jam with cognac

My parents have a fig tree in the garden of their house in Los Angeles.  They arrived for a weekend visit and brought me 5 or 6 pounds of figs.

What's a girl to do but make fig jam?

This year I had help.

Just in case 5 or 6 pounds of figs are also dropped in your lap, here's a recipe.  I've used this recipe for the past 5 years -- easy as pie and the taste is rather amazing.


just for fun :: a list

A list, via Che and Fidel, Blue Bird Baby and Spun Monkey  

I am…
making : peg dolls.
cookingbutternut squash soup.
drinking : coffee (as usual.) 
reading : wonder by r.j. palacio, the night circus by erin morgenstern & the impossible lives of greta wells by andrew sean greer.
wanting : time to slow. there never seems to be enough and it flies by so quickly.
looking : for acorn caps.  my pockets are full, and still i look for more.
playing : picco duetto. over. and over. and over. and over.
wasting : as little as possible.
sowing : tete-a-tete jonquils for springtime blossoms (does one sow bulbs or plant bulbs? plant, I think, but suspect I am answering literally when this was intended metaphorically?) 
wishing : upon a star.
enjoying : my toddler spreading his small wings at a little preschool program 2 mornings each week. he is loving it.
waiting : to see my parents (they arrive this afternoon for a quick weekend visit.)
liking : early dusk. we have resumed lighting candles at supper.
wondering : if I will make the deadline for this new book.
loving : my family. 
hoping : the chemotherapy treatment my mother has been receiving is effective.
marveling at the acrobatic squirrels who eat acorns whilst hanging upside-down by their toes from the top branches of our oak trees.
needing : to limit the amount time I spend reading the newspaper and thinking about current events.  this world is so very complicated. nothing is black and white.
smelling : beeswax wood polish. 
wearing : a new pair of black clogs.
following : my instincts.
noticing : that my mopsy-topped boys could probably use haircuts.
bookmarking : wonder, the night circus & the impossible lives of greta wells by andrew sean greer (see 'reading' above)
giggling : because my children are playing off-tune ukeleles & singing puff the magic dragon. at the top of their lungs.
feeling : grateful.


Toll Bridge, Troll Bridge

Back in January, I wrote a post about verified gnome-sightings in a city local to me.  Now there have been verified troll-sightings (spotted beneath a local bridge -- where else would a troll be seen?)

The troll first appeared following the Loma-Prieta earthquake in 1989, after repairs were made to a section of the bridge which had collapsed. It is thought that the troll took up residence to bring good luck and protect the bridge from further disaster.  There is also theory that, when the new bridge was being built, the project was plagued with problems due to the impending demolition of the old bridge span (which is home to the troll.)

If you like, you can read more about it here, here and here.


Vegetable Garden

Oats, peas, beans, and barley grow,
Oats, peas, beans, and barley grow,
Do you, I, or anyone know how
Oats, peas, beans, and barley grow?

In early May we set our vegetable garden in the ground -- though really, it's not much of a vegetable garden. All we seem to successfully grow over at the side of our house are blue-lake green beans, strawberries and tomatoes.

And now we head into Indian Summer for a final month of growing and ripening... 

About four weeks ago I caught a low-grade flu.  It was odd to run a fever and sniff and cough my way though most of August.

My green bean gathering duties were sorely neglected; those beans grew and grew until, one afternoon, my husband walked in the door and handed me a rather spectacular pile of green beans.  I sauteed them in a bit of olive oil with garlic, salt, pepper, a few bits of herbs and a finishing dash of lemon juice.  They were delicious.

I hope your harvest this summer has also been good!