February 2021

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When I was little, my mom made the best peach cobbler, the perfect balance of sweet, tender batter and canned peachy delight. I tried a lot of different recipes on my own without much satisfaction until I realized I should just ask her for the recipe (duh!). It’s pretty spectacular with peaches, of course, but I had some pie cherries in need of eating and tried it with them. So very good! How silly, too, that the simplest solution is often the most overlooked. I need more reminders of that. Just ask!

I made sesame crackers with the leftover almond milk meal. They are fantastic!!

The eggs are a Yvette Van Boven recipe that I riffed on, but are basically baked in cream, with the addition of curry (which looked so cool) and ham. They reminded me of the breakfast bowls Greg and I so love, minus the English muffins. To continue on the breakfast theme, have you ever baked oatmeal, then sprinkled the sugar over the top before broiling it? It’s a bit like creme brulee and a winner, especially the crispy bits topped with butter.

The cake is Delta Caramel, and it looks lousy, truth be told, but WOW, does it taste great. If you are a newby, like me, to the recipe, it calls for the icing to be drizzled over while warm, but there’s no way you’re going to fill that gap with something warm and oozy. Next time I’m waiting for it to cool a bit. Yessir. And in the Huh? category, Delta Caramel Cakes are in the top ten for a funeral. How about that?

More snow! We are finally getting our winter on here. Boy howdy, yes!!

Poetry

There is no poetry where there are no mistakes.

Joy Harjo

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Gyorgy “George” Taposik

S.S. Pisa

Hello Saturday!

It’s a gorgeous and not freezing day here. To steal a line from religious folk I’ve seen on the T.V. – Can I get an Amen?! I feel 100% grateful to have not lost power during that wretched stretch of sub-zero temperatures. What a nightmare to hear of friends shivering at 40 degrees indoors. Hoping they are feeling some much needed warmth!

And speaking of cold places, last weekend I made my first ever batch of runzas. They are a solidly Russian / Eastern European delight of ground beef, cabbage (which turned so blue!), onion, and cheese (sharp cheddar in our case). I also added caraway seeds, because when in Rome, right? They’re like the best hot pocket you can imagine, and can be done a million ways, just roll out the dough and fill them with whatever you fancy. Or, for the lazy or otherwise overwhelmed, head over to the Runza restaurant site, and they’ll ship some to you!

As we were enjoying them, I thought on my Grandma Tess’s father Gyorgy. He emigrated from Jenkovce, Slovakia (Austria at the time) in 1900 on the S.S. Pisa, at the ripe age of 18, with a whopping $2.50 in his pocket (about $70 today). He was a coal miner in and around Springfield, Illinois for the rest of his life and, rather sadly, died of black lung. I imagined him feasting on a runza, this simple all-in one in its own container, while down in the mine; the delicious, fortifying comfort of home.

In a further nod to the Taposik side of my family, when I was little, my Grandma Tess had this Bissel sweeper. I have many a memory of its delightful back and forth whir. I hadn’t thought about it in some time when I saw the Fuller model Greg is using pictured in the Vermont Country Store catalog. My mind got to clicking as I thought on Juniper’s wild riot of dog hair all over the hard woods. Would it work? It was surely worth a try. So I bought it. Wowie!! It’s pretty dreamy and way better than dragging out the noisy vacuum. So thanks Grandma, for the memories and the help! I love you.

Hive

Like colors or a spring tree against that kind of blue sky that pulls your heart out through your eyes. Pretty things will swarm you like that, like your heart was a hive of electric bees.

Katherine Dunn

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Hi from me to you! It’s a mighty cold day in our parts. So much so that the heat, at 12:26 p.m. is still droning on in an initial attempt to get the house to 68 degrees. Additionally, we have yet to walk the dog because we’d like it to be over 15 degrees outside when we do. How people in truly cold climes ever leave the house is a wonder. But there is a lovely powdered sugar sprinkle of snow out and the birds are singing, so there’s a bit of joy. Always true. Always.

Above is a sweet box of fun sent to some dear friends in Maine! They’ve already received it, so the surprise is not being spoiled. They got bars of my latest soaps, along with home made lip and hand balms, and, of course, some cute acorns! The oaks are still giving, so I am too. I did not make the sage smudger, however. I may try, but really cannot do it all.

And Beth (one of my Maine friends), I finally watched the GoGo’s documentary you recommended. I hope I didn’t already tell you. It was super and rockin’ and sad and brought me fondly back to Denice Romero’s house in 7th grade. Sweet sigh. We are also about two-thirds finished with Twin Peaks 2.0 from 2017. I wish I could find the circa 2000 (I think?) picture I took of Beth standing in front of the RR Cafe, very sad faced, because it had recently been a victim of arson and we could not partake of neither pie nor coffee.

Anyhoo, we are rather enjoying the series in it’s ultimate David Lynch-ness. The absurdity, wit, and wisdom. I highly recommend it to anyone even further behind the what’s-new-in-the-world curve. Better late than never, eh?

Home made almond milk. A bit of a painstaking process to get the skins off, but worth treating our tender tummies right.

Dutch baby, oh! Made with the remaining almond meal after making milk. Embracing the nose-to-tail ethos of the nut world.

I learned a new game! Star Realms is relatively quick and easy, yet still challenges my brain.

Pizza (and cola!) was the first meal after our January reset. Delicious. Dessert was chocolate chip cookies, which were shared with neighbors and otherwise gobbled down, pronto.

We’ve had freezing fog twice over the past week. How beautiful to wake up to it! How my face hurt from the cold!

These bits of gorgeousness are a spicy coleslaw, corn bread (with more almond meal!), and a jalapeno and hot honey glazed smoked pork chop made in celebration of…..

THIRTY YEARS together! Yup. This past Tuesday marked the big 3-0 since our first date at the Old Chicago in Fort Collins. Which, after consulting the map, is nowhere near where we ate on College Avenue way back when. Times change, peeps.

Even our love has changed. We’ve grown up, moved house three times, traveled thousands upon thousands of miles; shed what was holding us back from even greater love; laughed, hugged, and cuddled. And goll-ee, that’s just a wee scratch on the surface of our everything together. I will absolutely not say it has been easy, though mostly so, only because we laid such strong foundations way back when – forged of honesty, patience, and ever so much kindness. So when the wind and earthquakes and wretchedness have shook us, we’ve come out largely unscathed. Together.

Y A Y U S ! !

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