These are wild strawberries that bloom everywhere in June through the start of July - in the meadow out back - in my gardens - they're wild weeds!
in our home is so seriously not perfect! It's a bit battered and worn
and frayed around the edges and, yet... still beautiful and sweetly fruitful! Just like these strawberries, in fact. And that I'm sharing these in September simply proves my point.
Dear March — Come in —
How glad I am —
I hoped for you before —
Put down your Hat —
You must have walked —
How out of Breath you are —
Dear March, Come right up the stairs with me —
I have so much to tell —
I got your Letter, and the Birds —
The Maples never knew that you were coming — till I called
I declare — how Red their Faces grew —
But March, forgive me — and
All those Hills you left for me to Hue —
There was no Purple suitable —
You took it all with you —
Who knocks? That April.
Lock the Door —
I will not be pursued —
He stayed away a Year to call
When I am occupied —
But trifles look so trivial
As soon as you have come
That Blame is just as dear as Praise
And Praise as mere as Blame —
~ Emily Dickinson
(I always mean to stop and think about what that last bit means but, on a lazy Sunday afternoon? Perhaps another day - heigh ho. ;) )
I love March winds!! How about you?
Anyway! It wasn't but two days after my last post where I said that I was settled in for the long haul of winter that spring came. It came and settled in! The snow melted - the rivers were rushing - the sun was so warm, we barely needed sweaters - for two weeks it gently stayed with us and, then.... oh, hahahahaaa! Funny, Winter! Very funny! Just as I was thinking, "if spring wants to come a month and a half early, who am I to quibble?" Winter came back with a vengeance!! But I see mother nature's secret - there was a flock of robins on my lawn when I got home from church today...
You know how we sing about being "in the bleak midwinter" at Christmas but winter has only just begun? Indeed, here in Vermont, it's oftentimes that the snow doesn't really begin to fall and stick in earnest until the end of December. It depends but, generally, for us, middle of February is the middle of snow season - the true Midwinter.
I heard, once, that Midwinter is around the time of the winter solstice because, in the ancient Celtic calendar, winter began on November first unlike our modern calendar when that is 'Midautumn'.
Anyhoo! We've had snow for most of December, this year, and winter is growing long. I, however, choose to not long for what I cannot have but to keep my heart in a place of gratitude for where I am, today! i.e. it's still winter and will be for some time; so, don't even talk to me about spring!!! (Though, I may buy tulips at the grocery store - it's part of the gratitude, you see. ;))
Winter is still so very beautiful! It's still wonderfully cozy and warm inside! Winter, to me, is a long meditation - an antidote to the busyness of the rest of the year - and I wouldn't want to rush it!
It's a phrase that only 'out of staters' (a.k.a. 'Flatlanders') would use. (That would be my side of the family, we're talking about - every year - repeated several times - each...)
There is a Vermont accent, though, but before I go on, you first need to understand that to be considered a 'true' Vermonter, one's family line needs to go back, at least, three generations. For example, the king gave my husband's family their land; so, he's pretty safely considered a true Vermonter.
~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~
One time, Tom was taking me for a ride on a back road up into the hills of our little town. Our passage was considered a class four road; so, you can understand that we were really 'off roading' or 'four wheeling' on a wide path that was wending it's way through the hilly, woodsy landscape. The lane would jiggity-jog over and through the ruts and along the edge of rocky ravines and the reward was to be a beautiful waterfall hidden away for those few who knew about it.
We weren't three minutes off the highway, when we encountered a cow in the lane. Tom (having spent many summer's living in a cabin on the family farm) knew what to do. He climbed out of the truck and went out to chase the cow back through the gap in the fence that surrounded a tiny pasture scooped out of the trees and brush. It stays cold in the shady pockets of the hills that don't see much sun and there was a little farmhouse - smoke curling from the chimney - and an old timey farmer came out the front door to see what the ruckus was about. Well, they took care of the cow and, then, Tom and he proceeded to have a conversation that I couldn't understand at all - not one word! I recognized the accent and was surprised to hear how 'Canadian' the vowels sounded. I knew they were speaking English - but I had no translation for what the farmer said and could only catch bits of what my husband spoke.
I realized the treasure I was witnessing. An old farmer - Vermonter - lost in a hidden pocket of history.
Quite honestly, it was a very 'Brigadoon' experience!!
Well, they chatted on.... a while... a long, looooooong while....
(If you're from here, you understand and you're chuckling, too.)
That was twenty years ago and that unique population is disappearing fast - if it hasn't dispersed, already, into thin air - like the wisp of smoke that was curling from the old farmer's chimney...
~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~
sigh. Ache! Anyhoo!
I've been working on a gluten free recipe for pumpkin pie doughnuts. I thought that these were an epic fail but, then, the next morning, discovered that they simply needed to sit over night. Light and fluffy and moist - these are a little bit of golden amber heaven!!
Happy International Doughnut Day!!
(I know... right?)
These take time but if you'd like the recipe, I'd be happy to share! Just let me know...
(Alright, I've had a request... I'll be back later to type it all up... =) )