The other day at Riverwoods Farmer’s Market we found a few hints of the last bits of summer still around…
like warm fountains to toss pennies to…
and bright, happy flowers to breathe in…
and water sprays to soak your toes and fill your bag with…
and spooky old Zoltar to get your fortune from…
and even more waffles to nibble on.
I don’t mind one bit that the evenings are getting cooler and the sun is sinking faster in the sky. Summer is lovely, of course… but I’m a much bigger fan of Autumn…
and to look at those mountains–we won’t be waiting long.
In my never ending quest to find all the incredible pumpkin recipes on the face of the earth, that are NOT called pie–we’ve talked about this before– I came upon this recipe innocently enough on a blog called Family Bites. This amazing fudge is smooth, creamy and —I shutter to say—has all the positive traits of pumpkin pie without…you know…being…pumpkin pie. All the right spices and flavors in a little, bitty scrumptious pumpkiny morsel—that I dare you to leave alone for 10 minutes at a time. I know I couldn’t–and I’m incredibly brave.
It’s magic I tell you.
3 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
2 T. corn syrup
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
12 oz. white chocolate chips
7 oz. jar marshmallow cream
1 tsp. vanilla
Melt butter in a 3-1/2 quart saucepan. Add milk, pumpkin, and sugar. Stir over medium heat till sugar begins to dissolve, then add corn syrup and spice. Cook, stirring constantly until mixture comes to a full boil. Allow the candy to boil for 10 minutes–stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, in the bowl of your mixer, blend marshmallow cream and vanilla for about a minute. Let sit.
Remove candy from heat and slowly add the white chocolate chips, a handful at a time. Stir until melted, then add the rest a bit at a time. Pour candy into marshmallow mixture and blend on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Immediately pour into a lightly buttered 9 x 13 Pyrex baking dish. Allow to set for about 30 minutes. Cut in squares and cover with foil.
Move over pie–you’ve met your match!!
“If you concentrate on finding what is good in every situation, you will discover that your life will suddenly be filled with gratitude, a feeling that nurtures the soul.”
— Rabbi Harold Kushner
Ok, well, perhaps it was a couple of hours…but still. In one afternoon the leaves on our old,
ridiculous lovely willow tree–which are still green by-the-way– just came launching down, half burying the driveway in the process. Now, if we could just get them all scooped up and plopped down into the garden for next year. That would be wonderful.
I love leaves.
But wait. By the next morning we had this…
which turned into this.
I love snow.
But here’s the dilemma–the ground may look like this–right now, but the tree still looks…
like…this. I know, a busload of leaves still up there–right?
Our tree needs to get with it. It’s November already, for Pete’s sake.
So, in the next few days, if the snow melts and we get back to seeing green–so to speak–perhaps between all the turkey and stuffing and pie and potatoes, we’ll find a way to toss all those silly leaves out back and maybe…just maybe, there’ll be hope for next year’s garden. Either way.
I love Autumn.
“You simply will not be the same person two months from now after consciously giving thanks each day for the abundance that exists in your life. And you will have set in motion an ancient spiritual law: the more you have and are grateful for, the more will be given you.”
— Sarah Ban Breathnach
We thought about making the trip to a real, live pumpkin patch this year…
but Lily and Beckham went with their Pre-school class last week.
So I had to wonder if they’d think our funny, little- bitty patch was…you know…lame.
After all, what could possibly be exciting about 4 or 5 pumpkins growing in the backyard after seeing one of the real true Linus type pumpkin patches?
As it turns out, there just seems to be something magical and lovely about stomping around in a nearly forgotten, spent garden…
to find just the right pumpkin. The one that feels like it has always been yours.
The one that feels like it already has your name carved on it…somehow.
Kinda made our patch feel very, very real…after all.