Sunday, 22 March 2009
Marie's Sunday Six Smile Makers
Happy Sabbath day to you all. It's Sunday and time for my Sunday Six Smile Maker post again. Sundays seem to come around so very quickly, it's hard to believe that here it is again, but there's no denying it, along with Spring . . . Sunday has arrived! I am really looking forward to going to church today. I have not been for the last two weeks. Two weeks ago I had to dog watch at work, and last week we had company that didn't want to go. We just could not leave them on their own for that space of time, as they were only with us for a few days, and so we stayed home. My spiritual battery is really in need of some charging! Today is "Mothering Sunday" over here in the UK as well, so it will be a really special service this morning. Happy Mother's Day to all you UK'ers out there! Hope it's the best one ever for each of you and chock full of new blessings and happy memories!
Sunny Days. We had a lovely week full of sunny days and mildish weather! It has really caused everything in the garden to burst forth and all the trees and bushes are now covered in the green haze of budding leaves. The rhododendrons along the drive are all in bud and my tulips are getting ready to bloom! It's just been a lovely week. I have always said you just cannot beat England on a sunny day! There truly is no lovelier place on earth . . .
Having a day all to myself to do whatever I wanted and only that. Yesterday was the first day in a couple of weeks that I didn't really have anything pressing that needed my attention! Imagine a whole day with no chores to take care of, or jobs that needed doing! Oh my, but I really enjoyed it from start to finish! I did a bit of baking, a bit of telly watching and a bit of painting and planning. I did have my lesson for the Young Women to plan, but that is always fun, so it's not like a real chore to me. I even watched American Idol last evening. They had some country music singers on it which I really enjoyed, but I thought Randy Travis was looking rather thin and haggard. I hope he's well????
When I was cooking our supper last night (nothing special, just some sauerkraut, bockwurst and mashed potatoes) it made me think of my sister and so I picked up the telephone and called her, right then and there. My sister and I have always been the best of friends, and I really miss her alot. When we were really young, we were inseparable. When we became teens, we fought like dogs and cats. When we became adults, we found our closeness again. It wasn't all that long ago that we used to begin each day chatting with each other on the telephone. (after the children had gone to school that is.) Now we live too far away from each other, and we both work full time. Getting to talk to her yesterday was a real "ME" treat, and it was so very good to hear her voice. I love her to bits!
Mending fences. As some of you know my youngest daughter has been somewhat estranged from me for several years now. The few times I have been face to face with her, she has spoken to me, but she has not gone out of her way to communicate with me at all at any other time. No letters, no e-mails, no telephone calls. No Mother's Day, Christmas, Birthday or other cards. Zip, nada, zilch . . . Two days ago, right out of the blue, I got a nice chatty message from her on my facebook. It really made my day, and I cried big soppy tears of joy. I have been waiting a long time for her to do this and it really touched my heart in a really big way. In truth, it meant the world to me.
A letter from my mom. My mother, for years and years now, and religiously, has hand written each one of us children a letter every two weeks. I really look forward to that precious letter falling through my letter box. It is like getting a little *hug* and "I love you" from her that I can touch. I save each one of them, and put them into a box. I know that one day the letters will stop, and so, when that time comes, I will still have her letters, and every second week, I will be able to pull one out and her "I love yous" and *hugs* will go on. I actually found a couple that she had written a long time ago to two of my sons the other night when I was rifling through one of my recipe boxes. How precious they are . . . and so I am keeping them safe. I am sure one day my boys will really appreciate having them.
All of your lovely comments from yesterday. They really made a great day even better! It is nice to know that you all enjoy seeing my artwork. I know that I really enjoy doing it. I did another little fairy yesterday. I am liking these ballerina fairies. I called this one, "Always Kiss Me Goodnight." You can see all of her HERE if you so wish. I got quite a few sketches done this week and no less than three paintings. Todd says I will never get all my sketches painted, but , like I told him, I just have to put the ideas down on paper when I get them, or I will lose them forever!
I picked up some frozen mixed summer fruits the other day at the grocery store and made Todd a delicious Summer Fruit Crumble the other night. Oh, I know . . . I do spoil him relentlessly . . . but I can't help it, I just love it!
*Summer Fruit Crumble*
This lovely crumble has a nubbly golden topping made with oats. You can serve it with lashings of fresh cream or custard, or with a little ice cream, or just plain. It's delicious every which way!
4 cups fresh or frozen summer fruits
(A combination of raspberries, blackberries, and black and red currants)
3/4 cup sugar
grated zest and juice of one orange
1 sweet eating apple, peeled, quartered, cored and thickly sliced
1 ripe Bosc pear, peeled, quartered, cored and thickly sliced
Oat Crunch Topping:
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup plain flour
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
Pre-heat the oven to 190*C/375*F. Line an oven rack with foil and place in the centre of the oven. Lightly butter a shallow baking dish and set aside.
Mix the frozen fruit, sugar, orange zest, and orange juice together in a bowl. Stir in the apple and pear slices. Pour this mixture into the prepared baking dish, spreading it out.
Combine all the topping ingredients together in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the mixture is crumbled to the size of peas. Do not over process. Alternately you may rub the mixture together with your fingertips to make a crumbly mixture, or cut it together with two round bladed knives. Scatter the topping mixture evenly over the fruit.
Bake in the heated oven until the fruit it bubbly and the topping is nicely browned, some 35 to 40 minutes. Serve warm and spooned into bowls. You can top each serving with the desired accompaniment, or not at all. It's up to you!