Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Spring Ephemerals

Spring is here, and I feel like I've fallen into a time warp.  With the warm weather everything seems to be moving faster.  Actually, spring is almost over and SUMMER is nearly here.  Wait, what... how did that happen so fast?!

The awesome thing about this time of year is that with each new week I find myself thinking "This is my favorite time of the year!"  It's a moving target ;-)

Since the first week of May I've been going on weekly strawberry picking expeditions and then gorging on fresh strawberries.  I know - it's a hard life, but I'm up for the challenge.  

I've made a strawberry pie, strawberry shortcake (duh), strawberries and whipped cream, put strawberries in salad, and regularly have strawberries with Greek yogurt for breakfast.

Despite all of this strawberry mania, I feel like I've just scratched the surface of how many strawberries I'd like to eat.  I LOVE strawberries, and nothing tastes like fresh in-season strawberries.  Those sad berries that come in the plastic clam-shell container from the grocery store barely taste of ANYTHING, so I basically stick to frozen strawberries in smoothies every other month of the year.  

That's why I felt a tiny bit panicked when I realized that strawberries will only be available for about another week.  I will of course go strawberry picking ONE MORE TIME and relish that last round.  If I had a bigger freezer I'd freeze bags and bags of strawberries to use throughout the year, but sadly that's not the case.

I DID recently find a recipe for Strawberry Caramel Sauce, so that might have to happen.  I know several people who would be thrilled to get a jar of that for drizzling on cakes or ice cream or (cough, cough) eating from a spoon.

Right after the grand farewell tour of strawberries, luckily blueberries will just start coming in.  WHEW!  By the time this summer is over, I suspect I'll be made of 65% water and 35% FRUIT.  I'm totally ok with that.

To me, strawberries signal the height of spring.  Honeysuckle means spring has turned into summer, and this week honeysuckle just started to bloom.  I can't walk outside without smelling it's heavenly fragrance.  I've been hanging out in the backyard more often recently just to get high on the smell of honeysuckle.

The other thing I absolutely love about this time of year is how flowers pop up EVERYWHERE.  

Tufted Vetch (Vicia cracca) is a weed, but a beautiful one.
Daisy (Bellis perennis)  pops up everywhere.  I hate mowing it down in the lawn.
Most of the time I HATE the stupid stuff that grows up in our gravel drive,
but when it's flowering it's a lot easier to come to terms with it.  :-)

I have a soft spot in my heart for beautiful pastures.  

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