Tuesday, April 27, 2010

lemon pie

Sometimes a piece of pie is all.  Just the smell of it makes me feel more productive, more nurturing, more appealing.  Butter and lemon and sugar and vanilla wafting through the house turns this place into some kind of home sweet home.
 If you want your home to be as sweet as this, you must write a book or two, be the guest of honor at a certain book club in the highly controversial state of Arizona and ask the lady with the cats who bring roaches and lizards and mice into the house (but not into the pie!) to see if she'll give you the recipe.  Or, you can just scroll down here for the recipe.  Thanks, Maggi!
Arizona Sunshine Lemon Pie

1 large lemon
4 eggs
1 stick (8 tbs.) melted butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 C sugar
1 unbaked pie crust
Whipped Cream

Preheat oven to 350.  Leaving rind on, cut lemon into small chunks.  Remove seeds.  In a blender or food processor, blend together lemon chunks, eggs, butter, vanilla & sugar until mixture is smooth and creamy.  Pour into unbaked pie crust.  Bake for about 40 minutes.  If crust becomes too brown, cover gently with foil and finish baking.  Serve with whipped cream (and strawberries!).

Sunday, April 25, 2010

her love of chuck taylor in brown & white

Her little white feet are like the pale roots.  These priceless days end too quickly, without all the time we want to read and play and sew and walk and talk and bake and dig and decipher.  She found two little dead birds in the yard today.  Scrawny little pieces of beginnings.  We admired their closed eyes and curled up legs.  We were not characters in a book.  Just two bigger creatures ashamed of the littler ones' early demise. 

Thursday, April 22, 2010

where i've been

To the desert south (Las Cruces) and the desert west (Phoenix) talking to STRANGERS about how DEAR we all are.  Outside my motel in Las Cruces was this sweet ride:
And inside the motel was this:
We don't get out much--can you tell?
Then, to Arizona by myself and a host of varied and interesting book clubs.  When I returned to my own desert home, I was greeted with love that looked like this:

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

plant them and they'll grow

All of those things that clutter up our lives, sometimes have the capacity to break my heart.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

anybody miss me?

Yes, I've still been walking the dog, still dutifully working, but also doing some spring sewing (which I'll share sometime soon) and hosting both in-laws and forks in the road.

Also, I had an incredible time reading Olive Kittredge, and I'm so happy that I did.  Is this the time for a post about happpy vs. sad books?  Sure, why not?  Do you have this conversation with your mother:  Why do you always read such sad books?  Why can't anyone write a really happy book?  Let me start with my sweet eight year old's serious eyes tonight when he told me that he felt sad when he thought about how there would never be another today.  I cried.  Not because I was sad (tho I was) but because I was so grateful that he noticed this.  How in the world can you try to squeeze the best out of every day if you don't realize its ephemeral nature?  I saw him understand what it is that makes life so devastating and so beautiful:  We don't get another chance.  And often, as flawed human beings, we forget that.  Or we get distracted.  We think that being right is more important than being happy.  The books that I love (including Olive Kittredge) are the books that shine a light on our mistakes and forgive us for making them.  I want to read books that make me shudder deep in my lungs when I feel like somehow the page is connected to my diaphragm and I must turn the page in order to keep breathing.  This only happens when  a book is honest and let's face it--you cannot be honest without pain.  Honesty can be funny, sweet, beautiful and sad, but by definition it reveals something.  It peels back a layer of artifice and looks at what's underneath.  And what lives underneath isn't required to be SAD, but it's usually not simple.  The misunderstanding lies there.  I don't seek out sad books, Mom.  I don't try to write sad books, strangers.  But I do seek out complicated, messy, unsimple books; books that reassure me (and my eight year old) that just because the day is short and finite, with moments of disappointment and regret, excitement and hope, doesn't make it any less lovely.