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Summer’s Last Rose

007photo by Eva

Autumn for me is a bitter-sweet time of year.

On the one hand it can be a lovely time of year…the leaves changing to vibrant shades of red, yellow and orange(and the not so vibrant browns).  Various berries and nuts which have the squirrels and chipmunks gathering at a feverish pace.

Farmers harvesting their final crops of corn, pumpkins, potatoes and apples.

People decorating their homes with corn stalks, pumpkins, colorful mums, bales of hay/straw and Indian corn.

The weather becoming cooler meaning we need warmer clothes and blankets at night.

The nights become darker earlier and the urge comes back  to light candles again for the ambiance it offers.

Baking the treats of the season…using apples and pumpkin.

On the other hand…many of my bird friends will soon be leaving.  The butterflies will be gone for the winter.  My garden will become bare and brown once again.

 

These past few days I had been feeling out of sorts for some unexplainable reason and searching for reasons why…

Read about the full moon and how this particular one was significant for making goals and spirituality.  Sounded good and definitely going to look more into it.  but don’t think that was why I was out of sorts.

Thinking about the change of seasons and life in general…upcoming election in the US, general dis-ease of those around me, various drama from family members and friends…not that I have to absorb any of that drama and dis-ease…and I try not to for the most part…meditation and reiki help a lot in that respect.

I decided to take a pre-dusk walk down in my small garden…the butterfly bushes still have their fragrant purple blooms and in the early evening they are especially fragrant.  Spending some time watching the various moths and bugs on the bushes and breathing in the scent always calms me down.  Walking further and in the one part of my garden, actually this is my pet cemetery, there was blooming my last rose of summer.  A perfect deep red bloom and totally unexpected.  The fragrance was strong and musky and I kept breathing it in.  Deep breaths…as if my life depended on it.  And in a way, it did.  This single gift of a rose saved my life today…it gave me back my peace of mind and soul.  It is presently in a vase next to me and continues to give me pleasure.

May you find your last rose of summer…whatever that may be.

til next time…Eva

 

 

 

 

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Baked Butternut Squash Topped with Onions, Peppers and Spinach

028aPhoto by Eva, 2015

Squash and Autumn always go together.  Tonight for dinner I made Baked Butternut Squash topped with a mixture made from onions, peppers and spinach.  When I asked hubby to rate it between 1-10, he gave it an 8.  When I asked what would make it a 10…his response was “bacon”.   Mine is the vegetarian version…feel free to add bacon to yours!

Baked Butternut Squash Topped with Onions, Pepper and Spinach

Serves 2

Ingredients:

1 Butternut Squash

Spinach(one large handful for each half of squash)

1 Onion chopped

1/2 large pepper, chopped

garlic clove minced or garlic powder

herbs of choice

grated cheese

oil, butter or margarine

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Cut squash lengthwise in half.  Scoop out the center and save the seeds to made roasted squash seeds(I certainly hope you don’t throw the seeds out with the pulp…they taste amazing roasted!)

Place the squash face down in a baking pan half filled with water.  Prick the outside of the squash with a knife

Bake for 30 minutes until you can feel it is soft.

In the meantime, place the oil/butter/margarine in a large skilled and sauté the onions, peppers and garlic.  Add the herbs of choice and salt and pepper.  Just before the squash is ready to come out of the oven, add the spinach to the onion mixture and cover until well wilted.

Take the squash out of the oven and place each half on a plate.  Spoon the spinach mixture over the squash, add grated cheese on top and if you roasted the seeds, sprinkle some of them on top as well.  (if you are doing the bacon, add the bacon now as well).

Enjoy!

til next time…Eva

Summer’s End

001aphotograph by Eva, 2105

My neighbor and I look forward to church rummage sales and yard sales all summer long.  We make a morning of it on most Saturdays…leaving early(some of the sales start at 7), sometimes stopping for coffee or breakfast(some of the breakfast spots we go to have $2 breakfast specials…eggs, toast and coffee!).  The last group of the church rummage sales are usually end of October/early November.

I’ve noticed we’ve become more selective as time goes by…both of us used to buy a lot more items for our Etsy shops, but now we buy items that we or loved ones would use.

Today I came home with a small food processor/food chopper…never used…for $2(already used it to make my bean burgers…chopped onions without tears!)  and a set of hand weights(5 lbs) for $2 (have needed these for my arms and shoulders for ages).  I also found a 1 yard piece of muslin that I plan to experiment with(last week I had gotten a set of 10 iron on sheets to print photos on.)  I would like to do a picture of Beastie to put on a pillow for my daughter. …maybe this will make her feel better…or maybe not.  I could also make her a pillow with a picture of her father and me…just in case she forgets what we look like, ha ha!

I know that the yard sales are ending very soon and I know that my favorite farm stand closed this afternoon.  I went yesterday to stock up…but there is a limit to how much fresh fruit and veggies I can fit in the fridge.  One item I had to buy was watermelon…and I fully realize this is probably the last watermelon I’ll have this season(unless I am super lucky).

I have had a love affair with watermelon for as long as I can remember… I had my first taste of it when we were on our way down to Florida and I was six.  Back then, when you  stopped at a roadside stand and  wanted a watermelon, they would cut a plug out of it so that you could see it was ripe.

My husband chuckles when I bring watermelon home…and often asks, “was that the biggest one?” (and yes, it was!).

Yes…summer’s end…Summer  seems to be shorter every year as I get older. And much as I like the cooler(NOT cold) weather and the fabulous leaf colors, I wish it lasted longer.

til next time…Eva