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Archive for August 22nd, 2013

Turkey Tracks: Camp Lovey

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Turkey Tracks:  August 22, 2013

Camp Lovey

I had my two grandsons, 8 1/2 and almost 10, here in Maine for two weeks on my own.

It was glorious.

They did the Camden Yacht Club sailing camp in the mornings–even swimming in the cold harbor water every day.

And Camp Lovey the rest of the time.

Mike and Tami brought the girls up at the end of the two weeks for a week–which went by really fast.

Mike brought the boys up, and I picked them up in Portland.  We went to Acadia the next day, I think, and all were enchanted with the views from the top of Cadillac Mountain.

Acadia View Cadillac Mountain

The boys loved exploring all the rocks and the nooks and crannies that the ledges offered:

Bo and Kelly, Acadia 2013

Afterwards, we stopped at the Co-op in Belfast for food and at Baywrap for ice cream:

Bo and Kels, ice cream, 2013 2

John and I had planned to get kayaks for the children last summer.  He even ventured out to price them.  So this summer, I undertook that task with the help of the boys.  Together we could load the kayaks on the car.  I got cold feet about sending them out alone on the river, where I knew they would quickly be off and running and a long way away from me, so we got Maine Sports (very kindly) to help install a “J” bar so we could carry my big kayak as well.

Unfortunately, our weather was cool enough that we only got to use the kayaks one time–and even them we got caught in the rain.  It was still a good day.

Kayaks 2013

The boys loved poking around the tidal pools that line our shores.  And, looking for “sea glass”–which is now mostly just plain glass shards–is another favorite pastime.   These pictures were taken at Rockland Harbor.

Rockland Harbor 5

Boys, Rockland 2

Crabs, Rockalnd 3

Crab, Rockland

Crab, Rockalnd 5

Here’s what a shallow tidal pool looks like:

Rockland Beach 3

And much time was spent skipping “good” rocks, such as this one:

Skipping stone 3

We took the girls back, and they, too, enjoyed their time on this beach.  In fact, all four children went swimming in the cold water and in all their clothes!!!   They won’t forget that dip any time soon.

The boys went to the state quilting show–Pine Tree Quilt Guild–with me on a Saturday.  I posted that earlier, but here, again, is their favorite quilt:

Boys favorite quilt, 2013

We all went to Moose Crossing State Park one day–a beautiful place just north of Belfast:

Moosewood park 2013

Moose Crossing beach has some rather big rocks.  Bo spent some time rearranging them.

Bo, Moosewood 2013

And Talula and Kelly spent a lot of time wading through the tidal pools.  I had gotten lazy with the camera at this point, so don’t have this picture of them anywhere but in my mind.  But here’s one of Talula:

Talula, Aug. 2013

I always do a lot of cooking with the children–and this year was no exception.  Here are Maryann and Mina making our dinner salad:

Mary and Mina

Fortunately for me and for the chickens, the children love to collect the Japanese Beetles from the raspberries and beans and feed them to the chickens.  This year they became fascinated with dragonflies.  Here’s a BIG one on Bo’s hand:

Bo and dragonfly, Aug 2013

We went to Monhegan Island for two days and a night–staying at the Monhegan House Inn.  Here are Bo and Mina in Port Clyde waiting to board the boat to go out to the island:

Port Clyde 5

Here is Mina, swinging on a downhill swing on the island:

Mina, Aug. 2013

Here are my four kiddos, waiting to board the boat home from Monhegan:

Lovey and kiddos, Aug. 2013

On the way home, the boat captain took us by an island filled with sunning seals:

seals, Aug. 2013

We were all enchanted.

This trip was the end of Camp Lovey, as everyone departed for the long drive home to South Carolina a day or so later–especially as we got even MORE rain.

Written by louisaenright

August 22, 2013 at 1:10 pm

Turkey Tracks: Dehydrator Days

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Turkey Tracks:  August 22, 2013

Dehydrator Days

 

The hum of the food dehydrator is a constant sound in my kitchen these days.

The earth and the vegetable gardens are pouring forth the most amazing bounty.

I dried the mushrooms shown in an earlier post.  They filled all the trays of the dehydrator.

Dehydrator 1

But I also am drying cherry tomatoes to use in salads all year around.  These little nuggets are as sweet as candy and are so appreciated in the white cold of winter.  They don’t taste like any bought dried tomato you’ve ever eaten.

Dehydrator 2

My garden is producing a healthy crop of Sun Golds.  Hope’s Edge, my CSA, will provide some cherry tomatoes to dry.  And Susan McBride’s Golden Brook Farm, just up the hill from me, has luscious cherry tomatoes.

I also have discovered that drying zucchini–and even excess cucumbers–is a great way to preserve them.  Grating and freezing zucchini does not work so well.  The flesh gets slimy and bitter after a bit of time.  But the dried disks reconstitute beautifully if thrown into a soup or stew about five minutes before it is done.  Cut the BIG zukes into smaller pieces…

Dehydrator 3

I am also blanching and freezing the beans that are coming in like crazy now.  It’s easy enough to snap them, rinse them, drop them into boiling water for a few minutes (don’t let them get too cooked), put them into a baggie, and freeze them.

Beans

I picked up fresh blueberries from Hope’s Edge last week.   So I made jam from the uneaten and frozen berries from last summer.

Bueberries

Blueberry jam is easier than blackberry jam since you don’t have to pick them or deseed them.  Otherwise, the process is much the same.  I do grate the rind of one lemon into the pot–and add the juice.  Lemon perks up the blueberry flavor.  Blueberry jam needs a bit more sugar than the blackberries as the blueberries don’t have as much pectin.  This jam is a bit looser as a result, but that’s ok.  It’s great over ice cream, in smoothies, over pancakes, and so forth–and the flavor is lovely.  It tends to get stiffer in the cold of the refrigerator.

***

One of the deep pleasures of my life is harvesting and preserving the food that the earth offers us.  It is the most satisfying feeling to know that I have these “assets” in my pantry to be enjoyed all winter and into the long Maine spring when we are so hungry for fresh greens.

But, let’s face it.  Feeding people really good food–and eating it myself–is one of the things that I most like to do.