Everything Changes – Day 27

So yeah, I didn’t actually complete the Write 31 Days in a 31 day period… sue me.  Busy, tired, busy, tired, I could repeat….  And I can’t quite remember what Twin Ponygirl said for title, but I’ll give her the credit for this. So any comment made to this post, she get’s 50 cents royalties…

Lemon Bars Photo by Dana DeVolk on Unsplash

Literally, everything changes, from coworkers to menus, the restaurant business is ever evolving. Months ago I wrote how Miss Holly and I hated change, and for the most part, it’s true, but honestly, I am excited for the new changes to the menu. The other day as a bunch of us were prepping on a closed day, Coffeeman asked how we were all feeling. I wasn’t sure if it was in general because we all put in a long day, or because of the new menu. For me, I am feeling quite excited about the new menu. Yeah, there is a lot of prep. It’s an ambitious menu, to me at least. But it’s a good and exciting change.

I didn’t get what Coffeeman was blathering on about a week and a half ago about being bored with the summer menu… Then I started thinking about it. Like that night I went home and was totally in agreement. I was bored with the menu. I needed a change. I needed something different to challenge my mind. My creativity. My passion.

I’m always passionate about what I’m doing, which is why it takes me a bit longer to make things because I want them to be perfect-ish. But even I was feeling like the menu was mundane at times. It needed something to spice it up. It needed to embrace fall. Lots of fall, even if there are only 54 days till Christmas… (yeah, I killed you there, didn’t I?) I need dark flavors and spices. I want rich and heavy. It’s gorgeous fall weather  as I look out to a blue sky and this rust colored oak tree. I mean, it is absolutely gorgeous! So I want flavors that embrace that.

Oh the cranberries, port, orange, lemon, and cinnamon are a simmering. Gorgeous sight…

I am excited Chef decided to use my cranberry-port sauce for the lemon bars. My sauce!  Okay, well I did find the recipe and tweak it.  And the other day he asked where my recipe was for the lemon bars. “What recipe, you are the chef, aren’t you supposed to have it?” I asked

“You’re the pastry chef! Where’s yours?!” he countered.

Damn straight. I am the pastry chef. Where was mine?  I have to tweak it a bit working with a much larger pan than a 9 by 13!  But it’s good and I have plans.

Fall is bound to be exciting, and changes are forever happening. I’m learning to roll with them. Sometimes.

Kate

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Torta Caprese, Experimenting – Day 25

My special!

So, obviously I didn’t get to writing till it’s already the 26th, but this is an exciting post for me. I got home after an absofreakinglutely great night and was kind of a motor mouth for a good hour, poor parents, and finally am in bed tapping away.

So you know how I had my experimenting the other day about Panna Cotta? If not, read it. But this week, Coffeeman cleared for me to make a flourless chocolate cake.  I’m not sure why this popped into my head to try, but maybe it came from finding a recipe in Cooks Illustrated, or the Martha Stewart Living that showed up in the mail. Either way, Tuesday, I was alone in the kitchen mastering a torta caprese, or Italian Chocolate Almond flourless cake. (It’s technically not flourless when there is almond flour in it….)

Definitely unassuming in its natural state… IE, chilling in the walkin

This cake is rich in chocolate, eggs, butter, and almond flour.  I topped it with a chocolate ganache icing. It’s this single unassuming layer, but it packs a punch.

Oh the cranberries, port, orange, lemon, and cinnamon are a simmering. Gorgeous sight…

And because it’s autumn, and the cranberries came in, I wanted a cranberry sauce, something that screamed fall.  I found a delightful recipe for a port spiked cranberry sauce and was given the go ahead to use some of the port we keep in our restaurant.  So cranberries and port and orange and lemon zest, a bit of cinnamon and some orange juice…. This sauce is so good, just on it’s own. (“With turkey,” mused Coffeeman and  Astro D today…) Boys, keep musing. You have no idea how delighted I was to see the looks on all of your faces.  (I want to just eat the sauce. It’s that good)

Finished sauce. I liked it better as it simmered, but well, done is done. The taste explodes in your mouth.

Then an amaretto and rum spiked whipped cream on the side…. (because I mean, amaretto. And rum) a bit of candied orange.  I plated the dessert today and all I heard was, “You made this?”

“You made this.”

“YOU MADE THIS!”

And a “nice” coupled with a fist bump and I think a “nailed it” or “knocked it out of the park” along with a “that with an espresso is perfect” from Chef.

Damn…….  yeah, damn fine day. I could have danced myself silly around the kitchen, but for the running into people aspect.

Look at that description!

Good day. Like really really good day. This experimenting stuff is going well….

Can you tell I’m happy?

I only wish I could send you all a piece to try it out.

Kate

The Zest of Life – Day 9

I use a lot of citrus zest in my life. From lemon curd to chocolate orange mousse, I’m always zesting things. Even before the menu change back in summer, I was zesting all the time. Every menu has had something with lemon, orange, or lime zest used. Needless to say, I finally asked my father to find me a microplane online so I wouldn’t always have to borrow the previous chef’s and so I could get to work.

Recently, the lemon curd wasn’t quite lemon-y to a few people’s standards and my just lemon juice recipe went to zesting almost 20 lemons for a triple batch of lemon curd. That’s a lot of lemons to zest. Mounds of the yellow flakes. But trust me, it makes for a marvelously lemony lemon curd.

The other day I zested a couple of oranges for the mousse and that’s what I got the picture of the zest below.

About 4 tablespoons of orange zest…

There is nothing better than the smell of citrus zest. I really mean that. I love citrus to no end. I have ideas of a lime mousse. I live for zesting things. I actually really like it. I may bemoan it to coworkers, but in all seriousness, I love to zest. The bright sunshine smell is so so good to me.

Kate

Entering Into the Work

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Life has been incredibly hard these past two weeks. Hard and sad. So sad that at times I wonder what the heck I’m even doing and I don’t even know what to do. Losing my dog has been one of the hardest things I’ve gone through. I didn’t realize how hard it was going to be to not have him around and to want desperately to be holding my puppy. I miss him so much that it really is an ache that hits out of nowhere.

I’ve also lost the camaraderie of someone I would have classified as a close friend. That person is still a part of my life, but I don’t trust the person, per se. I struggle what to tell this person and how to act around them. It’s all gotten very challenging. It’s led to lots of crying and lots of moments where I am really not sure what the heck I’m doing. I can honestly say I don’t know what to do. I really am at a loss.

I stress about work and succeeding, and today was one of my first days back after a tiring schedule last week. This week is bound to be tiring as well, but at least I have a general schedule. Today, for the most part, I killed it. At least I believe I did. Sure, I had a few scattered moments, and times when I thought I wouldn’t make it through the day, but I did.

Mels asked me what I was going to do to deal with the anger I have inside. Because it’s there. A lot of anger, deep anger. Sad anger. My reply was, “write. And cook. Do the best to my ability to make it happen.”  Cooking has kind of flowed into my blood. Duh,  of course, it has.  I wake up thinking about baking and improving recipes, I finish out the day looking at cookbooks, watching Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown, and just today my new book to read is Sous Chef by Michael Gibney. Lucifer has it in his car and told me he would loan me his copy… I didn’t want to wait, so Better World Books delivered.

I don’t know what I want to do with my life, other than being a poet and published writer, but this cooking thing gives me a bit of passion that is so hard to explain, but I like it. I read this Sous Chef and I drool about the luxury of a well-organized kitchen. I think in kitchen terms: deli containers, 9-pans, cambros, half sheets, whole sheet pans, mis en place, roux, the line…..   I want to yell ‘behind’ at home. I slide my hand along the backs of people to let them know I’m there.

Photo by Caroline Attwood on Unsplash

Today there was this flow that was actually the best I’ve seen in a while. To the point where I was doing things, my head down, but I could duck out of the way as things went past my head to land in the garbage. As pans were passed off and handed off, pots caught as they dropped, things shifted back into place with a well-aimed hip, pilots lit, ovens restarted, butter melted, luxurious sugar-free lemon mousse that went out to a diabetic guest. (I did not make said mousse, Lucifer did, but I did zest the lemons) I like being able to get whatever it is someone asks me to get. To be able to put out a lunch dish that is not my responsibility, and know that it went out looking the way it was supposed to. I’m rather proud of that. Not sure Lucifer actually noticed, even those D-man told him I sent out an awesome burger. (Okay, so it’s not super fancy, our lunch menu, but a burger at our place is an art. I felt pretty proud of myself)

My pies have finally leveled out to looking gorgeous and elegant enough for my tastes. I like that I can make pretty food. I’d like to do more in that department. I want to work with Lucifer in updating and revising our desserts menu. I am classified as the pastry chef. I want pastry to look damn good. I want it to be something you come in and drool over. I may not want to nibble on many sweets these days, myself, but I want you, the guest to fall in love with it and when you see me on the street, think back to that luscious dessert you had.

I may not have any classical training, I may not have a culinary degree behind my name, but that doesn’t mean I don’t want to be the best at what I can do… all while being a runner, and a closer and a prep chef. I have too many hats right now. I like closing, and I can do that well, but whew, it can be exhausting.  I’m getting off topic.

I hope to god I am important in my hierarchy within the kitchen. I’d like to be invaluable, though not so invaluable that if I need time off they panic without me… Okay, well if they panic without the chef, why not the pastry chef? I’m being silly, but still, I want to be valuable in my job. I like my job. Despite all the stress, all the inconsistencies, all the crazy, all the moods, the romantic interests, the betrayals, the turn downs, the frustrations; despite all of that, I like my job. So I am trying to deal with life by ‘entering into the work.”

All of this came out of reading Sous Chef today and this lovely prompt above from Dona. I want to think the best ideas are going to come out of the work, the process and work itself. So. Okay then, now that I’ve rambled on long enough, I’m off to read more of Sous Chef, and I think I need to pick some rhubarb for work. If there is one thing I have found, you can get the sexiest moan out of Lucifer when food is involved.

Kate

PAD Day 5 – Experienced/Inexperienced

I know a bit about pies and such, but cooking makes me scared
When rolling out the dough I run, and feeling the dispair.
Cakes are better, but they make me question cooking
Sometimes they come out pretty, others rather unlooking.
Cookies are probably my best results when baking for the fam
They’re crispy, crunchy things that always go wham bam!
So in the baking field, I’m kind of knowing and not
But food comes out good or bad whether you like it or not!

Oh lord, that’s bad. That’s really really bad when it comes to a poem. The rhymes are just nonsense and the scheme is messy. That is what I first thought of when I thought of experienced/inexperienced though. My baking. It can be iffy at times and I have never wanted to really try pie. Especially gluten free pie.

Let’s try this again and see if something better comes out of Robert’s prompts for today…

Men are one of those things I find mysterious
I feel I know my way around them then out of the blue
something catches me off guard and I’m in deep water
swimming out so far that I can’t fathom how to get back
I feel that way when I write about men too. I start to write
a scene or two and suddenly Mr. so and so has taken the reins
and is telling me, “No, missy, you are not going to drag me down.
No way would I respond that way.”
So I’m left with my cursor blinking, mocking me
as men are apt to do at times, good natured, but mocking
still the same, and I feel like I’m floundering
trying to reach the beach with no idea how I got here…
I’m reading Outlander and Jamie is a dream dude
sexy and commmanding and a bit young like a stud
but he’d scare the hell out of me if I had a guy like that
I’d probably be bruised, ego, mind, and body
a puddle of nerves, never knowing what to do, but then
feeling like I knew only to be swept off my feet again
And a part of me would like a brute of a guy like that
until sanity strikes me and I think I’m too much like Claire
and I’d be an utter wreck for days…

There is an inexperienced poem. I rather like how that went off.

A drop of vetiver, then lime and juniper
a potion fit for a body in pain
But then there’s rosemary, marjoram, peppermint, and ginger
Potions of oils so strong a whiff from the bottle
makes your eyes burn and your nose clear
but these are my oils and I know them like my hands
I’ve mixed and dropped and poured and tested
Till I can pick out any or almost any oil
from a potion or two to the surprise of many
I’ve smelled lemongrass on friends and caught them
unawares as I said I smelled it on their skin
Some people reeking of patchouli but I like it
to the point where it’s homey
Essential oils are my alchemy and people ask
how did I know that that potion would work?
and I want to just smile and say it’s a secret
It’s my magic, mixing oils and scents
I’m a witch of sorts, but the good kind

I am experienced in essential oils, without a degree, but I read a lot of books on the subject and I take it very seriously. I find a bit of magic in the mixing of oils to make someone feel better. It’s like the old healing women, the midwives and ‘witches’ of old. I have a knack for it and I take pride in knowing how to heal in a natural way.

Kate

Dutch Pancake – Flash Fiction

Updated 4/26/15, for Sunday breakfast

Updated 4/26/15, for Sunday breakfast

“Can I get you something to drink? Coffee, tea, water, beer….” Phil trailed off as he watched Emma inspect his bookshelf.

“You drink tea?” she asked as she looked back at him over her shoulder.

He shrugged.  “Sometimes.”

“I’d love some coffee,” Emma answered and pulled out a book with a red spine.  “Do you happen to have eggs, milk, flour, and a skillet?” she asked as if inspired by something.

“Uh…. What?” Phil stared at her dumbfounded as he pulled coffee from the freezer.

“Do you have all of those things?” Emma asked again, enunciating each word carefully as if he was a child.

“Yeah. I do. Why?”

“Excellent.  How long does your coffee take to make?”  Then she noticed he had set out a stove-top percolator.  “Oh, at least fifteen minutes, yes?”

“Um. Yes.”  She was worrying him a bit with her cavalier manner and random questions.

“Good. Pull out the skillet and let me work.”  She seemed all business as she pushed up her sleeves, metaphorically since she was wearing a sleeveless top over tan chinos.

He fixed the coffee, putting it on his gas range to perk while he watched her rummage in his fridge pulling out eggs, milk and butter. Then she was pulling out bowls, a whisk and mixing flour and sugar while beating eggs and milk in another bowl. The butter went into the skillet which in turn ended up in the oven turned up high.

She found his small bottle of vanilla hiding amongst the salt and pepper in his ‘spice’ cabinet.  He ignored her muttered comment about ‘men and their lack of proper cooking spices’.  He was rather mystified by her mixing.

When everything was combined, she yanked the skillet out of the oven and poured the batter into the pan, popped it back into the oven and set a timer.

“That’ll be ready in no time. Do you have jam or powdered sugar?” at his negative shake she frowned.  “Maple syrup?”

“Yes.”

“That’ll do.”  She rinsed everything then wandered back to his bookshelves.

She was rather a conundrum in his mind.  She worked outside most of her day in dirt and soil, but she wore diamond drop earrings.

“Just rhinestones,” she corrected.

She wore sturdy pants and a chambray sleeveless top; riding boots.  But he caught a hint of lace hiding beneath the shirt.  Why would someone getting dirty outside wear lacy lingerie underneath?

She was prim and proper with her attitude and spoke without cursing, though she did let a swear word out as she commented about something she hated.  She read naughty books but liked to write clean and elegant poetry.  She admired his Varga paintings, and liked some of his more ‘risque’ books, but she looked like she stepped out of a Norman Rockwell.  Or something that would be considered ladylike.  A study in contradiction.

She was gleeful when the timer rang and she opened the door to the oven, shielding the contents from him.  Then he was utterly surprised at the giant puffed up pastry, or whatever she had made, that was practically escaping from the pan.

“It’s a Dutch pancake,” she answered his minor shock.  She directed him to get plates and forks while she cut the pastry and the whole thing collapsed.  The doused their halves of the pancake with the fake syrup in his cupboard and carried their plates and cups of coffee out to the deck, sitting in the mid-afternoon sun overlooking the mountain lake.

His first mouthful was pure decadence. Not too rich or sweet, but oh so satisfying.  He caught her grin as she bit into a dainty bite of hers.

“I moaned, didn’t I?” he asked.

She giggled.  “You did, but I’m glad you like it.  It’s my specialty.”

“Well you do a damn fine job of it.”

“Thank you.”

“I may have to keep you around,” he said as he devoured his piece.

“I may let you,” she teased.

The thing was, he wasn’t teasing……………

Ah, flash fiction…. sometimes it comes out perfectly.  This was inspired by a recent thought and my new love of Dutch pancakes that I make almost daily for my family. There is something so magical about eggs, milk, flour, sugar and butter that puff up to something so ooey gooey yumminess.  For those interested, I highly recommend King Arthur Flour’s recipe but up the sugar. I don’t use lemon, but it’s a personal thing. I really suggest you try it.

Lemon Puff Pancake with Fresh Berries

Or try this one that I think might be better.

Dutch Baby Recipe

As of 4/26/15, I have modified the recipe using both of the links I shared and so, play around with it. You want it to climb and not sink, like my image above.  So much goodness in such a simple thing.(I should add, I do gluten free, so even better)

Kate

Flash Fiction : A Marry Me Cake

Slice of pound cake

Slice of pound cake (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Tim!  Hello. Come in,” Jessica exclaimed as she opened the screen door wide enough to let the tall man in.  This was a pleasant surprise as Tim never came to visit and Jessica hadn’t seen him in months.  He was always charming and ready with smile for her, but they didn’t run in the same circles.  She kept to her book clubs and very prim and proper world while Tim tended to run in a more boisterous crowd.  The contractors and loggers.  No, they didn’t cross paths much, but she enjoyed every time she did get to see him.

“I just finished making a pot of coffee.  Would you care for a cup?” she asked over her shoulder as she walked towards the kitchen.

“Sure,” Tim answered, following her into the cheery room.

“Have a seat,” Jessica motioned to the kitchen table and chairs.  She took cups and small plates down from the cupboard, then reached into a drawer for spoons and dessert forks.  Tim arched a brow in question as she set a covered cake plate on the table.

Jessica lifted the cover to reveal three quarters of a moist yellow cake lovingly encased in a fluffy chocolate frosting.  “Can I tempt you with a piece?” she queried with a knowing smile.

Tim’s glazed over expression was enough of an answer so she sliced him a generous piece, then cut a much smaller one for herself.  After pouring the coffee and sitting down herself she motioned for time to dig in.

His first bite turned into a long drawn out moan of delight and Jessica smiled in pleasure.

“Good god woman, what did you put in this thing?  Ground up ecstasy?”  Time said this with a groan as he took another bite.

“No.  Just butter, sugar, eggs, flour, vanilla and other cake making ingredients.”

Tim looked up at her, a thoughtful expression on his face.

“Jessica Martin?”

“Hmm?”

“Marry me.”

Jessica laughed.  “Oh Tim, stop it.”  She sipped her coffee, but she was finding it hard not to smile like an idiot.

“I’m not joking.  I would give you anything you could ever want if you make me cake like this.  How are you at pie?”

 

I made a Betty Crocker Starlight cake with fluffy chocolate frosting the other day (I highly recommend this recipe if anyone cares, and yes, I only make homemade cakes)  The cake is long gone; my father adores cake, but this thought came to me and I just had to play around with a guy eating cake and asking a girl to marry him just because she  makes a fine cake.  I love cooking for men, and I kind of like showing off when I can with food. Hey, they always say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. You can’t tell me it isn’t true.

Well, my father is happy now because I just baked another cake yesterday. I don’t do much, if anything, for father’s day, but I know he appreciates that cake. For those interested, a Betty Crocker Daffodil Cake. Pillowy soft angel food like, but with a gorgeous yellow sponge swirled through from the egg yolks you add. (Another cake I highly recommend making, if you aren’t afraid of angel food cakes)

Signing off

~Kate

Flash Fiction : Kitchen Baking

Formabröd

Image via Wikipedia

Late summer and early fall were the times of year she liked being in the kitchen during the mornings.  When the mornings were crisp and clear, the cool scent of dew mixed with decaying matter creating a synergy of perfect smells.  From the aging annuals flowering their last hurrah at the back door; to the pungent and musty smell of oak and cottonwood leaves, damp from fall rains.  The odors combined in a  symphony of flavors that tickled the nose.

She would bake in the morning, filling the kitchen with the warm spiciness of cinnamon and nutmeg, or the sharp  freshness of orange and lemon.  She would bake tender scones or fluffy blue-berry muffins, studded with crystalized ginger.  She would hum as she baked.  Popular songs she heard on the radio, or old classics her parents had taught her to appreciate.  Rock on morning, country the next.  It didn’t make a difference.  She just liked having music  in her head.

When she felt adventurous, she would put on her once concession to opera; Handel’s Trois Cantatas.  Sometimes she contemplated a few rap songs she had, but usually those were designated “AFTERNOON” and not to be played before that time.  There really was a time and a place for certain types of music.  Just like there was a time and a place for certain teas or specific books.  She wouldn’t have been caught dead drinking Earl Grey for breakfast, just like she wouldn’t be caught reading erotic fiction anywhere else other than her room after dark.

Usually while she baked she would have a pot of hot tea at the ready and she would sip cups of lukewarm tea when she finally got around to it.  It wasn’t that the tea grew cold in the pot, but more that she would forget she had poured herself a cup.  Sometimes she wondered if she liked having the tea at the ready more than she liked drinking it.

Just a bit of random flash fiction.  I was smelling the spicy scent of wood burning fires, and puttering in the kitchen today.  This came to mind.

Signing off

~Kate

Choux Pastry

'Choux Pastry Heart'

I’m in a choux pastry mood.  For those of you that don’t bake, or know much French, that means cream puff pastry.  Cream puffs, eclairs, profiterolles….

I woke this morning singing Corrine Bailey Rae’s song ‘Choux Pastry Heart’.  It’s not a happy song, but well, I was thinking of choux pastry. 

I love cream puffs, and they are so feminine and cute.  They reek of anything French.  Eclairs? Well they are decidedly French, of course.  When I go to France (this is a far off dream, so no future plans in the works)  I am going to indulge myself in eclairs.  Drink black, black coffee, nibble on an eclair, watch the Frenchmen go by, and drool.  Okay, drooling isn’t exactly feminine, but you catch my drift.  They are Frenchmen after all.

Eclairs...

I have this incredible desire to make some eclairs.  I told my father that the other day and you should have seen his eyes light up.  My father loves anything that has to do with chocolate, pastry, and pudding.  I can’t really go wrong.  And he loves cream puffs as well.

I also have this insane desire to make puff pastry.  Then to make tarts, apple turnovers, etc.  Can you tell I am in a baking mood?  And of course, I want to attempt something that scares the bejeezus out of me.  The one time I did a butter/layer/puff pastry type crust, it turned out horrible.  But for some reason, I have confidence that I can make it work.

Apple Turnover...(puff pastry)

Maybe it is my delusional mind, or maybe it is the four new French and baking books I receive, or purchased, over the holidays. (that’s Christmas holidays)  I get in a baking mood and I just need to try something new.  A while ago it was just peppernuts for Christmas; a new recipe that didn’t turn out that well.  In the fall it was lemon squares.  And pecan fingers.

Well, for now I shall turn on Corrine Bailey Rae. It’s been ages since I’ve heard her album, and it’s one of my favorites.  I think I’ll wait to make the eclairs and puff pastry for a day when I actually feel good.   Until then, I’ll just drool in my mind.

Signing off

 ~Kate

Hazy Shade of Summer

We sat there in the sun, my sister and I, baking, warming from an altogether freezing dip in the pool.  Though 73 is far from cold, it was a shock to our systems.  Rugburn, my dachshund, crashes in the sun, drying from his unwanted swim in the pool.  He rubs his face dry in the long grass.  Scratching, Rubbing. Rolling.  A lazy, contented daze crosses his face as he stares at a floating hover fly a few from him.
 
The sun has that September feel to it.  Burning, but subtly different from the blazing, burn of July.  More hazy.  I feel the heat from it, warming my back.  A warm breeze blows down from the mountain, bringing the sweet resinous scent of pines that have baked all day in the sun.  Warm sweetness of dried grasses intertwine with dry dusty earth.  A brush of sweet smoke.  A faint flavor of cow manure graces the breeze.  Not unpleasant.

The lawn is weedy again.  With plantain seed heads and wide-bladed meadow grass that grows three times faster than the soft mountain grass.  It needs to be mowed, but then it will lose it’s last summer feel to revert back to the clipped neatness of full on summer.

Sunflowers are heavy with seeds, though the golden disks are still blooming wildly at the top of ten foot spires.  The trees are heavy with winded seeds.  Rustling gently in the wind.  There is a lazy feel to everything as flies buzz restlessly.  The yarrow has gone to seed.  Weedy heads like too tall trees sway slightly.  Stellars jays chatter raucously  as they fly over.   Landing to call from a tree.

Tomatoes are ripening.  Bright red globes of juicy sweetness.  Sweet berries hidden in cane patches demand munching.  Grapes hang from spiraled vines.  Warm and sweet with juice.  Golden hard squashes ripen on vigorous growing vines.  Consuming flat ground, seeking purchase.

I watched a dragonfly zip by a wheelbarrow before landing for a moment.  Rusty brown with etherial wings.  He buzzed off in a hurry, to who knows where.

This weather demands pitchers of iced tea and good books to be read on a porch swing.  Naps to be taken in a hammock.  Endless games of croquet to be played leisurely.

Signing off

~Kate