Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Sunnier














I'm feeling a lot better these past few days. I was in a funk for a little while, feeling bored, anxious, restless, kind of weepy. Then I spent time with some new babies and that really put me over the edge. My life actually depends on never doing that again, but my heart doesn't care. I felt weird physically too; I had the most aggravated, itchy kind of feeling, like my skin was too tight. Nothing was going particularly well. Even blogging felt wrong. Blogging is strange when I don't feel like myself; I like to be authentic, but not a downer. I'm sorry if I was. Thanks for bearing with me.

The stars aligned and life perked up. I spent time with a friend. I painted my nails. I heard news of a remarkable second-chance romantic relationship. I spent a restorative Sunday afternoon puttering alone in the kitchen, roasting a chicken and winging a peach cobbler. It worked. I wrote it down to try again another time. I'm feeling better about summer vacation. Kids get bored too. They don't mean to distract me, they just love my undivided attention. I'm lucky to be able to give it to them freely. I have been crocheting every day, while we listen to our audiobooks, and guess what! My flowery circles are done. Yep, I've made all 192 of them. I finished them yesterday. In early June, once I'd made half the circles, I decided to make four of them each day. That made it all seem very manageable...and now for the joining.

I've also been enjoying evenings in the backyard with the Bear after the children have gone to bed. We do it often, weather-permitting. The sun is setting, there is often a nice breeze and it's not too hot. We sit on the patio and talk, usually letting the hens free-range around the yard. We pick them up for a cuddle, but mostly they just waddle around, eating apples and leaves, chatting and squawking. I think they get a little overwhelmed by the small Bears when we let them out during the day, so it's nice to see them exploring in a more relaxed way in the evenings. It cracks me up to see them standing on the lowered end of the see-saw, or standing atop a riding toy. I also like to do a little pruning and plant-inspection in the evenings; it's cooler and I can concentrate on the task a little better.

The Bear made me a little shepherd's crook for the back planter bed. I had a garden decoration with copper bells and glass beads that I wanted to display but couldn't find the right kind of stake to put in the ground. We were at Lowe's recently and he suggested buying a thin metal rod that he could bend for me. He painted it with black spray paint left over from the gate we painted this spring. It cost about $2 to make and it's exactly what I wanted. I'm so proud of him. He can do basically anything. I admire my new crook ten times a day. I often discuss my own crafting and how it makes our house a home, but he makes things too, and his making is just as important to our home life as mine is.

Now, about that peach cobbler, which made me quite happy this week...

Peach Cobbler, my way

3 large very ripe peaches, sliced thinly
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1/2 teaspoon baking powder

Place peach slices in greased 8-inch baking dish. In a bowl, combine remaining ingredients to make a thick batter. Pour or spoon over peach slices, spread with a spoon or offset spatula to cover fruit. Sprinkle batter with about two tablespoons sugar. Bake at 400 degrees F for about 40 minutes until topping is brown. Serve warm.

45 comments:

  1. The peach cobbler sounds delicious so I might give it a go, though I'll have to do some convesion of measurements first. It's great when husbands make things too. Mine likes to make things, especially with wood. He's finishing off some new accommodation for ducks and hens. We finally got a few more hens last weekend - the same as in your photo!

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  2. Peach Cobbler sounds fab, I hope the peaches on my little tree ripen enough for me to make it. My husband is handy too, I think they are the best ones to have! Glad you are feeling perkier.

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  3. That peach cobbler sounds delicious, just the kind of thing I like to bake. Glad to hear your mood has picked up. That itchy kind of feeling is usually nerves/ tension. When signs like that start showing themselves, it's time for some active relaxation (yoga often works well). xxx

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  4. The peach cobbler sounds delightful, my husband and daughters would love that. Glad to know you are feeling a bit better. Great that you have done so well on your crochet project, looking forward top seeing it.

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  5. Hey Jennifer,
    I know that itchy feeling well. I'm sorry you've been in the doldrums, but happy that you feeling perkier. It's funny the things that can topple us, sometimes from the most unexpected places too. And it's so important to have time for yourself too. It's not selfish. It makes us better. Better in every way. I love the pics of your chickens. And I have the exact same coop!! I think chickens are relaxing time wasters. They are so eccentric, and I love the contented little clucks they make. Olly and I have just put ours back into their compound after an afternoon pottering around the garden. Marc it very handy, which is just as well. I can't wire a plug. I still think of your toolbox post with complete admiration. Enjoy your mountain this evening, my friend.
    Leanne xx

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  6. Hi Jennifer, so glad your get up and go has come back, its not nice feeling all out of sorts is it. Chin up buttercup as we say.
    Have a good week,
    Kate x

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  7. hmmm that itch, it's a difficult one. Sounds like you found your way through it. enjoy the cobbler! X

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  8. I'm glad that you are feeling a bit perkier now, we all have our up and down times, so don't ever worry about saying that you are not feeling as cheery as you might like, or even really not cheery at all. Your hubby sounds like a great guy, it is lovely having a man who can do all sorts isn't it, and I am sure that you are very proud of your husband as I am of mine! xx

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  9. Lovely post Jennifer, glad you're feeling so much better. Great photos and thanks for sharing your recipe!
    V x

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  10. Blogging is funny like that...when I was going through my bit I cut way back on blogging because like you if it's not authentic I can't do it. I'm happy for you pal!! Sunnier days are a good thing! And ha! I love those pictures of your chickens wandering about!! And how fantastic is the hubs for making you your own shepards crook!! High fives on that one!! Wishing you a lovely Wednesday Jennifer! You are inspiring girl! Nicole xo oh and thanks for the recipe!!!!

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  11. Hi Jen, I know where your coming from sometimes everyday things can leave you feeling overwhelmed. Its good to recognise this feelings and take a step back. Happy to know your feeling your self again.I can not wait to see your circles blanket its going to be stunning. Hugs to you x

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  12. People are complex organisms! Part of that is slipping into somber moods that come on for no reason and disappear after they're done making a visit!
    I love your chicken photos and the way they just bop around "like they own the place!"

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  13. I am glad to hear that your mood has lightened again. I know all too well what you are talking about, and we all get into that funk from time to time. I love the photos of your chickens, they are real characters :) That peach cobbler sounds yummy, I have never tried it before, so I may just have to make it!

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  14. I always enjoy your posts, Jennifer, and I'm glad you are feeling better. Love the garden hanger your hb made for you, how perfect! Well done on finishing that impressive number of crochet circles! The peach cobbler sounds delicious....another treat for my list :)
    Take care.
    Helen xox

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  15. So glad you are feeling better, Jennifer, and I can identify with some of those out of sort feelings that are uncomfortable and strange...but are normal for us, I guess. I think you are helping me get over my fear of chickens. Having been reared on poultry farms you would think I would not be afraid of them, but I never had baby chicks that I could cuddle as they grow into hens...they were never working pets because it was a research farm. Anyhow, I am admiring your hens...from a distance... and imagining what it might be like to pet them :) The Bear created a perfect hanger for your chimes! Very clever. We have been having quite a few days of hot weather, and the weatherman told me that some of your southwestern monsoon rain traveled north to give us a bit of a thunderstorm which was welcome. I want to try making your peach cobbler gluten and dairy free which might not be as tasty...but I am hoping it will be good. Thanks for sharing the recipe. xx

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  16. Hi Jennifer.. I'm glad your mood is happier.. we all go through those funks. I had a low level depression feeling last week but I think it's over. A trip to the ocean did me wonders yesterday! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)
    PS - I'd love to see the crook your hubby made!

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  17. I'm glad you are feeling better, Jennifer! I certainly get like that often, I sometimes can never put my finger on it. It can last a day, or weeks. Occasionally, somebody might say a passing comment that niggles me, then my mind can't shake it even though I have forgotten it was said - do you know what i mean? It's like I know something has annoyed me but I can't remember what, then I try my hardest to remember, then remember, then feel annoyed again. It's so hard to explain! Your evenings sound lovely, it's something we would do more if the weather was warmer here. Congrats on finishing your flower circles!

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  18. Your crook is perfect...as are you now♥️
    It always feels better to say it..and you have done that beautifully!
    Enjoy the rest of your week, my friend
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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  19. Ok, I am giggling to myself now at the thought of your chickens on the seesaw, going up and down...that's funny. I'm so glad you're feeling happier. I want to try your peach cobbler, it sounds so good. Do you eat it with anything, like ice cream or cream? I will happily put both on all deserts! xx

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  20. This might sound stupid but my daughter was going through a low patch last week and I'm definitely of the opinion that the full moon had something to do with it. I've been aware for a few years now that both my girls' moods go down when the moon is full. Of course, it might be all in my imagination so feel free to completely ignore that! I'm glad you're feeling better. Thanks for the recipe. It sounds delicious! :o)

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  21. I'm just catching up on posts, pleased to hear you are feeling happier. I read somewhere that it's ok for kids to be bored as it fuels their imagination to do things rather than have everything sorted for them. Looking forward to seeing your crochet progress. Take care lovely and enjoy the rest of your week xo

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  22. What a lovely relaxed summer post. How wonderful to have someone who can make things for you. Your garden is quite the oasis of calm I think. Sitting outside on a warm evening is one of the great pleasures of summer isn't it.

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  23. Just catching up a bit and sorry to read you've been feeling out of sorts, but happy to see you've perked up a bit. Sometimes we have to just bear with the down days to appreciate more the up days, don't you think?
    Your chooks look so happy to be ranging freely and I'm sure they enjoy getting a cuddle too. And well done to your hubby for being so creative too. Hugs xx

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  24. Hi Jennifer, so pleased you are funk free now. I love your chickens, we used to have some rescued battery chickens, they have such characters! Beautiful photos xx

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  25. You and Bear are a good pair! It's so nice to make things yourself. Glad the funk has passed. Your pictures are wonderful, as always!

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  26. And to that lovely recipe I would only add "...with ice cream." :)

    How nice that you can take so many beautiful photos all in your back yard! I am glad you're feeling better. And it IS wonderful to have a crafty husband - our home is full of Mr. M's handiwork and it's such a joy to look around at all the things he's made for us.

    Love the way the chickens strut and pose.

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  27. There's nothing like sitting outside on warm evenings to wash away the stresses of the day. Your peach cobbler sounds delicious, thank you for sharing the recipe. Glad you're feeling better. Have a lovely weekend xx

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  28. Hi Jennifer,
    I'm so glad you're feeling better. I've been keeping you in my prayers. I think we women have those sorts of things hit us and we can't really tell what has exactly set off the feelings. I'm really happy things are looking up for you. I always enjoy seeing your girls strutting around the yard and your evenings in the yard with the Bear sound very lovely. The crook he made for you is just perfect.
    Blessings,
    Betsy

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  29. Talented family, eh?
    I'm glad you feel lighter. I know what it feels like to want babies and yet know it's not the best idea, so I can sympathise.
    Thank God for the garden and sun and little bells ringing, go enjoĆ½ and post about it for me. We have heavy rain forecast this weekend.

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  30. Peach Cobbler looks good and I do so love seeing your chickens, they brightened my day ☺

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  31. I always love to see your chickens, Jennifer, and I'm particularly fond of your speckled hen (I have a secret collection of chicken ornaments: wood, pottery, etc.) How pretty is the crook, and beautifully made too. You guys are very talented crafters. Peach cobbler sounds divine, and reminds me of my mother who used to make cobblers in the wintertime. And I am glad you are feeling brighter - it happens to us girls, but that doesn't make it any easier, does it !? xxx

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  32. pottering in the garden in the evening is good for your soul. of that I am firmly convinced.

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  33. I'm glad that you are feeling more balanced Jennifer. I love your lovely pictures it makes me wish I could have chickens too. Thank you for your peach cobbler recipe it looks nice and easy I must give it a try. :) x

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  35. Jennifer, I'm so happy to hear that you are feeling much better now. I really dislike the feeling of being in a funk and just not feeling like myself.- It happens though.

    So happy that you were able to spend some time with babies. -Ah, that baby smell. :)

    And husband's are pretty darn amazing. I'm so impressed with what my husband can build/recreate! That's great that your husband was able to make you that shepherd's crook. :) Wishing you more sunnier days~

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  36. Glad you are feeling better. Life can sometimes just knock us down a bit, and sometimes it isn't even obvious why. But you get back up, brush yourself off and soon things return to normal. Life and hormones knock us down!
    Hugs to you,
    Meredith

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  37. I'm so pleased you're feeling better now...it's horrid when you feel trapped in your own bad mood.The peach cobbler sounds absolutely delicious!

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  38. I glad to hear your feeling better now. You back garden look like a great place to spend time. Have a wonderful weekend.

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  39. so sorry to hear you've been a bit down - pleased to hear you're better though x Have a lovely weekend
    BH x

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  40. Hey Jennifer,

    Glad you're feeling 'sunnier'. Your flowers are so pretty, just looking at them would make me smile in silence, simply enjoying their time to shine.

    Poppy

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  41. I truly don't mind when I read a post when someone is down. It shows they are human.

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  42. Sorry...my iPad doesn't like blogger. Anyway, this is why I love your blog so much. You are real and lovely and have so much to offer. Your pictures are amazing. Your craft is amazing. Your words are amazing. Your food is amazing! Glad to hear you are better though! xoxoxo Jen

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  43. So happy to hear you are feeling brighter these days! I am known to get into a funk myself from time to time... we are human and it happens. Lovely photos as always! And your peach cobbler sounds easy ad delicious.

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  44. Another lovely post, Jennifer, and I'm glad you've come through your bad patch and are feeling better. We all get them at times, but they do make life hard for a while. Your chickens are lovely and if you're anything like me you find them so funny and relaxing to watch.

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  45. Hi Jennifer! I am so glad you found my blog... a fellow 505-er :) Your photos are so beautiful! I look forward to keeping up with your blog!
    xo Lindsay
    middleofosomewhereblog.blogspot.com

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