Almond origins

I admit that I have several knowledge gaps.  Time zones come to mind most immediately as a good example, however, I don’t believe I’ve been off-base about the origins of almonds my whole life:

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It sure looks and feels like an almond…but came out of the middle of a delicious freestone white peach!  Mysteries.  I’ve been swimming in peaches for the last several weeks since I discovered Loschiavo’s has a gold mine of ripe-enough-to-eat-in-the-store peaches.  These are not the baseballs you buy at Kroger and have to wait for while you hope they ripen into something edible, maybe.   The produce at Loschiavo’s isn’t fancy organic, as far as I’m aware, but they source locally when they can and their produce is infinitely longer lasting and better tasting than stuff from the mega stores.  In addition to their life-changing yellow peaches, they also carry white peaches (simply because a few of their customers prefer them – how nice is that?).  The white peaches are pretty hefty and almost too sweet for my tastes – but happily went into my cheery fruit salad, after the almond-peach pit drama was resolved.

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Eating peaches naturally led me to think about my favorite drink, Diet Peach Tea Snapple.  Yum.  Sadly, I tried to avoid the diet version’s sweeteners this week and bought the regular sugared version instead.  I don’t know what I was expecting, but halfway through the bottle I realized it had 39 grams of sugar in it.  Holy smokes.  It also made me feel like death afterwards, so I chalked it up to another casualty of a more reasonable, more adult, less sweet diet, and was very sad.  Fast forward to my pitcher of sun tea sitting outside this weekend and my white peaches.   I find the yellow peaches to be more flavorful than the white, so I came to have an overripe white peach languishing on my counter, having been skipped over many times this week.  I peeled that thing, threw it in the food processor, made baby food, basically, and stirred a spoonful of the delicious resulting peach puree into my tea.  Problem solved.

If you’d be weirded out by cloudy tea, this isn’t a good solution for you (puree won’t dissolve into cold iced tea), but it was super subtly delicious.

Sunday Sky

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Such indecision. Rain, sun, rain, sun.

Naked Neck

Hey, hazy July.  Welcome back.

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That Polar Vortex stuff was nonsense last week.  I’m not ready for cooler weather until I’ve gotten at least a little more mileage out of my new naked neck – see, I lost a few things last week at Parlour:

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grays peek

grays peek

grays peek

I squeezed in a freshly-cut selfie, but I’d prefer you see my cooler, cuter, substantially lighter and less-sweaty-necked-self in person soon.  Bah, such relief.  I’m unfortunately still going through that awkward phase of pouring waaaay too much shampoo out, though…I’ll figure it out soon enough.

Haircuts are funny things – people  get weirdly attached to their hair.  In my mind I got rid of my rat nest years ago – now my actual appearance finally matches what was in my head.  Aren’t you all relieved to not have to hear me talk about getting a haircut anymore?  I’m glad.  And I’m glad I can finally feel hot water in the shower directly on my head and my cool pillow against my cheek, with no hair sandwich.

Redbird Hollow

I am up for a hike anywhere, anytime.  The challenge is to find an interesting spot with enough incline to make it less of a stroll and more of a workout, but not so hilly as to present an opportunity for me to hurt myself.  I’d heard of an ideal trail but it remained an enigma – it was located within one of those east side communities that is notoriously tight with details.  There is historical information available on Redbird Hollow, which is exceptionally interesting because the trail follows an old inter-urban rail line (really, you should read the article), but little in the way of location information.  I now know why it’s hard to find: it is awesome and the folks in the know want to keep it a secret.  I totally understand this sentiment, especially with the limited parking available, so if you want to know where it is (and you’re too lazy for some moderate googling), you’ll have to join me on a hike sometime.

This trail has an immense amount of signage (none can be seen from the road, naturally), so there is plenty to read while you hike.

grays peek

grays peek

grays peek

This one merits a zooming in…yikes.

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grays peek

Anyway, the preservation has paid off and the place is teeming with wildlife – butterflies, bright dragonflies, chipmunks (brave chipmunks), deer, and TINY TOADS.

Quick – spot the toad!

grays peek

grays peek

He posed so nicely, didn’t he?   Such a tiny guy.

 

Fly and Spinning

Farm weather calls for a farm day.   Safety comes first on the ATV’s , but barbed wire, poison ivy, and bees be darned.  A sweat bee even flew out of my pants at one point.

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All manner of creek critters were under attack during our visit, including snakes, crayfish, bull frogs, and fish.  I spent some time fishing (for the first time in about 20 years, I’d say) and was particularly startled to have landed two of the day’s three fish.  They were ugly catfish, sure, but they still count.  They especially count because I caught one on a fly rod.  A little while ago I declared I would learn to fly fish this summer, and my beginner’s luck this past weekend was a good start.

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grays peek

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July 2014
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