Our house came with a number of mature fruit trees. Several varieties of apples, pears, and cherries. The cherry trees continue to produce although they look quite geriatric. The apple tree that had brown leaves at the end of the season shows a lot of potential this spring.
RAMPS! DH and I are Iron Chef fans, thus the "secret" ingredient. It is now the season for ramps, one of the truly seasonal vegetables as it is generally only available in April and May. I shopped at Willy Street Coop on Friday and brought home four bunches of ramps. They are also usually available at the Dane County Farmers Market on the Square on Saturdays during the season.
We enjoyed ramps at three meals this weekend. I know, that does seem a bit repetitive....but they are good and they probably wouldn't survive in the refrigerator's rotter drawer for a week. They are easy to prepare and there are a number of yummyrecipes out there. Friday night, DH prepared them in a very simple manner. The entire ramp is edible. After rinsing them, he separated the bulbs and leaves. At the same time, he melted some butter and sauted some minced garlic. He added the ramp bulbs and cooked them until they were soft and then added the leaves until they wilted....they wilt very quickly. Then we enjoyed them.
I've never tried one raw but they are rather mild when cooked...like a leek but not. We made them the same way for my mother Sunday noon accompanied by scallop mousse toast and cherry crisp. Tonight we had ramps with pasta to finish them off.
This week, I'm going to experiment with TypePad's feature of preparing a post but scheduling posting at a later time since I haven't solved the Windows posting problem and I'll be back in Independence, MO, this week with a Windows machine.
I made some progress on the Sunrise sock. I completed the heel flap, turned the heel, and now I'm working on the gusset. I'm counting on less work after work so I can finish this sock this week and start on the second to complete the pair.
Yesterday was damp, weather-wise, at both Kansas City and Milwaukee/Madison. Fortunately, we experienced no travel problems and made it home last night for a very late pizza dinner. Here is the photo I promised: The horse and wagon help the human conduct tours of historic downtown Independence, MO. The yarn shop is just down the block from the Harry S. Truman Visitors Center where you can arrange to vist the Library or tour the Trumans' home.
I took a little stroll outside this morning to see what was new since Sunday. The trees are leafing out more *smile* and the invasive weeds have really shot up. *grimace* We have radishes! Well, perhaps that is an overstatement. The radishes were the first I expected to see of the seeds I planted last week. I'm betting on lettuce next. I'm sure Black Dot and White Dot will keep an eye out on my "raised" garden.
I've got a lot of other plants coming up but some I'm just not sure what they are since the previous owners planted them and I've yet to look the plants up in a reference book. I know the red shoots are peonies in this photo but I'm not sure what the leaves are that surround the peonies. Peonies are one of my very favorite flowers. I like to cut them and bring them in for arrangements. I usually have a game of hide and seek with the ants before the flowers enter the house but it is worth it.
It has been a busy week as predicted. DH did a good job of scouting. There is indeed a yarn store available for retail therapy whenever I can find the time. *pretend you are looking at a photo of the Knitcraft Yarn Shop* The link to the shop does not show the nice photo that I took -- they must have an old photo of the shop front on their web page. I had about 8 minutes to look around inside. I have to go back! They have oodles and oodles of yarn and some brands that I've never seen before. I'll ditch my co-workers some lunchtime, kidnap the rental car and proceed with some serious yarn shopping.
I'm using a Windows computer to post this week. TypePad definitely has different characteristics in Windows versus using a Mac. I'm also having a challenge uploading photos. At the moment it appears I don't have permission to upload photos. Hrumph! I'll see what I can do about that....later.
It is raining buckets right now. I hope the storm system passes by tonight. DH and I are flying home tomorrow afternoon. Maybe then you'll get some photos to enjoy.
The alarm went off at 3 AM this morning so I could shower and be awake for the day's travels. I'm traveling with DH this week so that part is good. We arrived at the airport to find our flight to Milwaukee was cancelled due to lack of a flight crew. Oh no! No worries, though...there was a Greyhound-type bus all ready at the terminal ready to take us to Milwaukee. And there was time to buy a cup of coffee for the trip. Cool! I was even able to snooze a bit on the bus. We arrived in time to catch our plane to KC and here we are.
*Imagine a photo of a nice sunny day in Independence, MO.*
Today was busy and the rest of the week is going to follow in the same vein. I'll see if anything interesting presents itself for your blog-reading pleasure. Right now, I'm off to research the comfort of the hotel bed pillows. *Yawn*
BTW, DH did some advance scouting and had news of a yarn shop near a good place for lunch. We'll see....
It was a really beautiful weekend here. Blue sky, temperatures in the 70's, and just a bit breezy. On Saturday, besides doing laundry, I planted a few seeds. I planted peas, like Vicki, but later. *g* I also planted purple haze carrots, radishes, meslun mix, red leaf lettuce, and spinach. It will be interesting to see what comes up since I'm a bit of an absentee gardener and I have the challenge of local wildlife, and I don't mean the bar scene.
Our state fair is a great state fair! Knitting content has been a bit low lately on this blog. But we'll see if this post will turn the corner for that topic. There was a knitting sighting this evening while we were watching the movie State Fair. The knitter was a "thrower" but I think she held her right needle over her hand and not in her palm. Interesting to watch...both the movie and the knitting.
I've finished packing and all I need to do is relax and catch some quality sleep (sleep fast) before I head to the airport on my way to the Kansas City area. I'll be working near Independence, MO. Anyway, Sonnet will be set aside for a while (do I hear sarcastic laughter?) and I'm picking up the Sunrise Socks again. Since I have been doing more knit blog reading than knitting, I hope osmosis has occurred and I've picked up speed from reading Cookie and Norma and many others I'm just too tired to link to.
Today is my brother's birthday. He is younger than me and when we were children we had a very typical friendly sibling relationship. He sat on me when he was about two or three years old and knocked the wind out of me and that was just the beginning! I would find GI Joe, err, *visiting* my Barbie doll after coming back from some little excursion. He and my boy cousins, Andy and Tracy, fixed lunch for me and Kim (Andy's and Tracy's sister) one Saturday noon. They made us hot dogs and had even put the ketsup on the dogs.....of course, there was hot sauce disguised inside the ketsup! (Actually, we all laughed about that one.)
But now, we have a very nice adult brother-sister relationship. We aren't alike in many ways...he's always active, very active, and is more impulsive than I am. But he's loyal and loving and supportive when times are not so great, which are qualities I hope I share with him. He's a great dad evidenced by two outstanding sons. And he's secure enough that he can be goofy. I hope you have a happy birthday, brother, and many, many more!
BTW, he's single...so if you're single and female, like knitting and other crafty stuff *grin*, think Wisconsin and California are nice places to live, and think you're interested, let me know. *VBG*
I was out of town (I forgot, I live in the country!)away from home for a night and decided to leave my laptop at home. I certainly have a habit of spending a lot of time reading blogs and surfing in general. My self-imposed time-out was good. I didn't get the shakes though I did miss the weblogs. I did start reading Kim Harrison's A Fistful of Charms which is the fourth in the Rachel Morgan series. Interesting and definitely the distraction I needed from everyday cares. I can sink into a book of fiction and enter a time-warp where I will look up and find I've been reading two hours without noticing anything but the story. It is a great way to escape but also a "good" way of not getting enough sleep, not doing housework, chores, and so on. Yes, i was awake past midnight last night. Wayyyy past my regular turn-off-the-light time.
So, I'm going to catch up with my list of weblogs and maybe submerge myself into the last portion of my paperback. Sweet dreams and I hope the Pixies are on your side.
Friday was a catch-up and run errands day for me but it started out nicely with this early morning scene.
So I got the oil changed and the tires rotated on the Jeep and knit on Sonnet while waiting. I stopped at Target and made household purchases but I was too late to find discounted Reeses Peanut Butter Eggs, Cookie. (Which is probably good for me anyway.) I made an impluse stop at Lakeside Fibers where there is soooo much yarn to see. I found the discount yarn and made a, err, several, um, well, about two bags worth of purchases. Photos for a later blog post if I'm not too embarrassed to show you. It was all on sale, honest. No, I don't have a pattern in mind for any of it. Yet. I made several more stops then went back home where I enjoyed this sunset.
On the home improvement front, DH and I had a major accomplishment---a fire in the fireplace!
This is the same fireplace that I was scraping and chiseling paint from eariler this year. We recently had doors (two sets) installed on each side of the fireplace (the fireplace can be enjoyed from both our front room and living room) and found a log holder (yes, that's the technical term for it. *g*). We are looking forward to many cozy nights in front of the fireplace now that this project is complete.
Today was spent on the regular weekend chores of laundry and cleaning. I also made time to be outdoors and didn't do anything more constructive than sit on my favorite rock in the woods to soak up a little sun and decompress with Mother Nature.
Today was the end of my work week and *gosh* I was really glad. DH had good flights and made it home on time from Kansas City and I met him at home with the groceries. I was responsible for making dinner tonight and I think I did all right. *grin*
For an appetizer, I made half a tube of breadsticks from the Pillsbury doughboy dipped in olive oil with oregano, parsley and onion powder. The sticks were twisted and baked according to directions. Then I sprinkled them with sea salt. They went so quickly, a photo was impossible.
For our main meal, I made Chicken Lettuce Wraps. I made the recipe almost exactly but substituted shallots for the scallions and I used tamari sauce for the oyster sauce according to a substitution I found on the Internet. I had a small head of Boston lettuce that I carefully de-leafed and washed. I don't have a wok so I just used a large frying pan and it went together very quickly. DH threatened to eat it all tonight but even he was filled up so we have leftovers. This was a easy yummy meal. I think if I remember to buy scallions next time, it may be even better. The scallions shallots were the last of our 2006 shallot harvest.