A Little Wednesday Sunshine

This week mild weather with bright sunshine arrived in my town, and the people of my state (Colorado, USA) began to howl into the night every evening at 8pm in a show of support and unity. Flowers are starting to appear in my beds, and I am opening windows to air out the house. In the midst of bad news and scary times there is still sunshine, unity, and moments of beauty.

I hope that everyone continues to stay safe and that you are enduring the days of isolation in good humor. Here’s a few glimpses of some of my happy moments this week.

I made some pumpkin bread! 

I ran out of milk and bread last week. I didn’t want to eat my cereal dry so I went hunting in the pantry and found… a can of pumpkin in the back. I picked a recipe online that would use the entire can of pumpkin, and used oil instead of butter since I’m hoarding those last two sticks to make shortbread cookies later on in the week. One recipe was discarded because it used too many eggs… hey, those guys are precious right now. Ta-daa! This recipe did the job. You know, pumpkin bread with a slice of white cheddar is a pretty tasty lunch, too! A couple of days later I had gotten my delivery of groceries and I now have milk again for my morning latte. The pumpkin bread is really nice with that, too.

Can you see the great horned owl?

I went grocery shopping a couple of weeks ago and saw a large bird arriving at a nest in the top of a tree a couple of blocks from my house. I walked down there this week in the nice weather to take a picture. I was expecting to see a golden eagle, but I kind of think that this is a great horned owl because it’s standing straight up and then there are those ears…. What so you think?

I saw the pattern for Sweet & Tartan socks last week and you know that I had to cast them on right away. A quick trip to the stash located the yarns I needed and I’m knitting a little section each evening. How can these socks not make you feel happy? Wait until I get to the hot pink heel!!

I’m still ignoring the finishing work that needs to be done on the Pebble Tunic; looking for easy knitting for stressful times I wound yarn and cast on another V-Neck Boxy sweater. This sweater is lightweight, extremely comfortable, and the perfect project to generate the peaceful Zen of knitting that I need right now.

Do you like this color? It was a February special made for my local yarn shop (Colorful Yarns) by Chasing Rabbits called “Valentine”. As soon as I saw it I had to have it!

I bought a beautiful variegated yarn that compliments this color with an idea to put some Fair Isle work on the sleeves. Now I’m considering making a cowl or small shawl to go with the sweater. Not to worry… I have days and days before I need to make a decision on that. For now I can just knit away and binge watch Netflix shows. Perfect plan for now.

We have a few more days of sunshine here before the rain/snow makes a comeback over the weekend; while I can I’m reading and taking naps in the front room with the plants. Good days in a sad time.

Have a good week everyone.

Berry Time: July Socks and Mom’s Cobbler Recipe

I’ve been knitting like crazy on my July socks since the end of the month is almost upon us. Last night I finished up the first sock. Cute. Way cute!

Sock
The first sock is done. Look at the cute garter stitch heel and toe!
Close-up of sock.
The lace opens up when the sock is on my foot. I really like this one! The pattern is called Lacy Cable Socks by Veronik Avery. Here are my project notes on Ravelry.

The colorway of this yarn is called “Fire Dragon”, but they sure do look berry colored, don’t they. I had berries on my mind when I went to the grocery store and ended up with some yummy blackberries and raspberries in my basket. Time to make my favorite berry cobbler!!

My mom always grew berries. When I was a child there was a row of Boysenberries in the yard. All summer long mom sent us out with buckets to pick the berries which she turned into pies, cobblers and cases of jam that became Christmas presents for all her friends and co-workers later on. We loved those berries; we ate a lot of them while we were picking and they have become one of the flavors of summer for me.  Here is the recipe that mom adapted for her berries.

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup soft butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt (optional – I never include it!)
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 cups freshly washed berries
  • ¼ cup sugar
Cobbler
Mom’s Berry Cobbler: I mixed two small packages of berries to make this cobbler. The total weight was 12 ounces; about 2 cups.

Heat oven to 375 oF (350 oF in altitude above 5,000 feet)

  • Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
  • Add the flour, baking powder (and salt) to the bowl on top of the creamed butter and sugar mixture. Make a well in the flour mixture and add the milk.
  • Mix everything together well. There will be some tiny lumps but don’t worry about them.
Batter in the pan.
The batter will need to be spread in the bottom of the pan. I use a spatula to get the job done. Don’t forget to grease the pan ahead of time!
  • Spread the mixture in the bottom of a greased loaf pan.
  • Rinse and clean the berries. (If the berries are large like strawberries cut them into smaller pieces.) While still wet put them into the pan on top of the batter.
Berries on top of the batter.
The berries need to be wet when placed on top of the batter. They shouldn’t be dripping wet, but if a little water comes with them when you pour them onto the batter it will be OK.
  • Sprinkle the sugar on top of the berries in the pan.
Sugar on the berries.
I used a 1/4 up of sugar to make this cobbler as the berries are pretty sweet. If you are using tart fruit/berries add a little more.
  • Bake for about 45 minutes. (batter should brown across the cobbler)
Baking cobbler.
Here’s the fun part of this recipe. While baking in the oven the batter bubbles up past the berries and forms a crust on top.
Browned cobbler.
Here is the cobbler almost done. I let it go a little longer in the over to make sure that it was completely cooked in the middle. This cobbler baked almost 50 minutes in my mile high oven (at 350 degrees)
  • Enjoy!
Finished cobbler
I ate my cobbler with a side of vanilla Greek-style yogurt. Yumm!!

Time to get another serving of cobbler (for a late breakfast!) to munch on while casting on the second sock. Gosh, I just love July. 🙂