It’s a beautiful, cloudy, cool morning outside. There is a heap of laundry to fold and some sloshing around in the washer getting washed, as I type. It’s a soothing sound. Seth and Sarah are playing with the kittens. The dog is at my feet.
Awake at 6, I spent half an hour with my older ones before their bus came. They talked to me about things that were important to them. Jacob had a field trip yesterday to Salem, MA. Grace and I sat together on the couch. Ethan was busy getting ready for school. I have come to enjoy the early morning visits together. Sometimes Grace asks me to braid her hair.
Rich has been gone on a business trip and will be home later tonight. He’s still parenting, though, and I had to laugh when Jacob told me that last night at 10:30 he got a text from him, “Jacob, are you behaving yourself? It’s time for you to get to sleep.” Jacob and Ethan were in the middle of playing a computer game together so it was a good thing they got the instruction from their Dad, I was sound asleep at that time. They felt like he was watching them and I’m thankful for my husband.
I had a frightening experience this morning but now I’m laughing about it. Caleb was ready for school early enough to play with Seth and they were downstairs in his room when I heard screams to stop my heart. Caleb was screaming for help in the most terrifying manner. I ran down expecting glass? blood? broken bones? a wild animal attack? electrocution? These screams said the worst was happening to my precious boy. I got down there and found him: upside down. head first and completely inside not one, but two sleeping bags. on the floor. with his pant leg caught up on the dresser knob, with the dresser about to fall on him, and Seth just standing there. Apparently Caleb was originally on the bed when Seth pushed him off. I was more upset with him for being so dramatic than anything else, so the lesson learned (one hopes) was “Do not Scream and Cry for Help so Terrifyingly Unless Things are Truly That Bad.”
My son David has been reading nonstop, that new Percy Jackson book. I stopped by Barnes and Noble yesterday to get it for him. Ethan wants it next, than Grace.
David’s remarks when reading:
“I love reading a new book. Because there is suspense.”
“I love home.” (getting curled up with book on the couch and smiling)
“Mom? Isn’t it funny when you’re reading a book- you can’t wait to get to the next page but then when it’s at the end you wish there was more?”
The fall colors have peaked at our place. Most of them have dropped off the trees but there are still some steadfastly hanging on.
This is the red tree I was sitting under just last week…..now it’s mostly bare branches.
The pines by the pond have been dropping their old yellow needles.
Carpeting the ground beneath with them. They smell so good I think about making a pillow.
pine needles and leaves on the pond
I find it so fascinating that this bee’s nest was being built and was hanging up in the trees and we never saw it until the leaves started coming down. (down by the other pond)
Old Sunflower; I waited for so long to bloom that I can’t bear to pull it up just yet.
Leaves in the stream
vine in the trees
I took these a few weeks ago when Rich took the boys out into the woods to collect fire wood.
He is blessed with a fine crew of sons.
It’s no wonder I’m always making cookies to fill these hard working stomachs.
Oh that reminds me. On Saturday Rich was gone at Jacob’s football game and I had a hair appointment so Grace and Ethan were watching the little ones for us. When I was in the chair my phone rang and it was David, wanting to know if he could make cookies. He is eleven and has some experience with baking so I said “yes”.
When I arrived back home, I was greeted with the sight of the ugliest cookies I’ve ever seen. They were caramel colored, spread out over the entire cookie sheet, and glued to the pan. There were three pans of them, a big, deserted bowl of dough, and no one around in the kitchen. Poor David! He did perfectly fine except for the fact that he put powdered sugar in the dough instead of flour. These particular chocolate chip cookies were made with three kinds of sugar only, and no flour whatsoever. It took a long time to get them off the pan. They practically WERE caramel.
I made some on Monday with Seth. I love making cookies and have perfected chocolate chip, if I may say so.
I share my tips:
the recipe off the bag of chips
pure butter; no shortening ever
an extra teaspoon of vanilla
plenty of extra flour to make a softly stiff dough (I added two and a half more cups for a double batch on M. but it was a rainy day)
add only half the amount of chips called for in recipe; I always double the recipe and add just one bag of chips
no cookie scoop, chocolate chip cookies that are all the exact same shape and size are boring (just like people)
I always enjoy eating raw dough and give spoonfuls out to the children, too, raw eggs be darned!
bake ONLY until very slightly brown around the edges, take them out when still half done and leave them on the tray for about five minutes, (they will continue baking) then remove to cooling racks.
this is the way to chocolate chip cookie perfection; tender, soft and not too sweet
Ahead of me is an entire day of staying at home. Later on this evening I will go out to gather up the older children from school, but for now I can putter around in my pajamas, care for my little ones and do some home-making. I have a big pork roast in the fridge to figure out for dinner and perhaps I will make more cookies, since the ones I made on Monday are gone.
“Only the heart, with love afire,
can satisfy the soul’s desire.”
~James Terry White