Magnum Opus

"Templeton vanished into the shadows while Charlotte went back to work. As it grew dark, fireworks appeared in the night sky, as Charlotte worked and worked creating her new HUMBLE web for Wilbur. the next morning, Wilbur saw the new web and a curious object next to Charlotte. It was a sort of sac or cocoon. It was peach-coloured and looked as though it were made of cotton candy.
Wilbur: Are you awake, Charlotte?
Charlotte: Yes.
Wilbur: What's that?.
Charlotte: This is my egg sac, my magnum opus, my great work..."

Although it's certainly not as personal to me as the egg sac was to Charlotte, I have a magnum opus growing in the garden this summer!  Everytime I go out to check on it, the size seems to have increased by a third!  It's magnificient! 

It's a Boston Marrow squash!  I was prompted to grow them, after hearing in a gardening seminar, that most of the canned pumpkin you buy at the grocery stores is actually Boston Marrow squash.  This one is about 15" long and as big around as a large dinner plate!  Here it is in relation to my 2" wide camera lens cap.

it's a beauty!

Luscious Summer Fruit Salad

Some evenings, when I’m running late getting dinner on the table, I grab one apple, one banana, and one orange…chop them all up, mix them in a bowl, and serve it as a simple fruit salad. But sometimes I pull out all the stops when making fruit salad.

To make a really luscious fruit salad, using those fabulous fruits of summer, here are some tips:

–nothing that turns color…no apples, no pears, no bananas, no peaches

–fresh pineapple (Absolutely essential! I used one whole pineapple in this salad. It’s just down at the bottom of the bowl.)

–something green (ideally kiwi, but green seedless grapes will do)

–make sure everything is cut in bite-size pieces

–pit cherries and slice in half

–no melon (Melon makes everything else taste like melon.)

lots of berries

–blot dry the fruits that will bleed color all over the other fruits (cherries and red plums will do this)

–color, color, color! (Use as many different color fruits as you can.)

This is a great pack-and-go fruit salad. Just chop all the fruit and put each type of fruit in its own Ziploc bag. When it’s picnic time, just open and dump the bags into your serving bowl and serve. It will taste wonderfully fresh, because all the fruits have not had a chance ot start to taste like one another.

I love summer’s luscious fruits!

Fourth of July Celebration

John Adams, writing of the remembrance of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, said, "It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more."

Small town parades!  Nothing like them!  Some of my favorite moments from our town's.

Then it was on to Walter's parents' home for a barbecue, some grandbaby cuddling, and luscious summertime desserts (none of which I can take credit for).

A torential rain on the drive home added a little extra fun to the day!

I think John Adams would approve of the "illuminations" at the end of the day.  Most festive!

Delightful Visit - Part II

More scenes from our recent touring with our visiting friends...

We toured America's oldest family farm.

Sadly, although it has been in the same family since 1632, the farm is for sale.  It was decidedly lacking in crops.

We visited a winery and had a wine tasting.  Their port was amazing...especially with dark chocolate.

The next day our friends wanted to visit some orchards that produce hard cider.  The views stretched for miles and the cider was quite tasty.

We passed some time at the Vermont Country Store, exploring the old, the tasty, and the wacky, as well as quiet time on their front porch.

The next day was the birthday of one of our guests.  We fulfilled her wish to " something adventurous.." by going hiking.

Then it was down the hill for a birthday dinner of pasta with garlic-cream sauce and grilled chicken, birthday cake, and late night fun with sparklers.  (In case you're wondering how I shot these pictures, I just set my camera on night mode and held very still.  People ran around and waved their sparklers, and this is what I captured.)  Very fun!

It was a great visit...all too short...but fabulous!  Gosh, I love these people!
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