but not hopeless

This Tennessee life is wearing me down this week. I have been missing Missouri so much, and harboring secret fantasies about moving back, and being with my friends again. The thing about that town, though, is that it is so transitory. Most people come for college, and move afterwards. Many of my best friends had already left before we did, and within a number of years my remaining friends there will probably leave as well.
My mom made her first quilt, and she made it for us. It is so sweet, and so loved
Oftentimes I feel lonely and overwhelmed. But not hopeless. I still find beauty in my days, and am constantly amazed by the growing and learning taking place in my children. I feel pride in my clean house and cooked, wholesome meals. And I'm so glad that Scott is happy here, back with his friends, finding things to be involved in and ways to get to know people. Meanwhile I just keep networking, and cooking, and playing with kids, and eventually things will get easier.
I've found the perfect pizza dough recipe, which has made homemade pizza so easy! We actually had it twice last week because it's a great way to use up random things in the fridge (feta, spinach, sausage). 
 My friend Ivy made her first batch of homemade jam - blueberry rhubarb. She is new to cooking, and as you can tell she is very brave! I have been cooking for at least 4 years and have not yet attempted anything involving jars or pressure cookers. As soon as the jam came in the mail, Finn and I ripped open the package, toasted up some homemade bread, and slathered it up. So delicious!

Our new friend Rachel made this amazing dessert - honey chocolate mousse! With freshly whipped cream and chopped macademia nuts. If you're going to be making new friends, this is the kind you definitely want. 

Somewhere between the food and the babies, I know I'll begin to feel better. This cool fall weather that's blowing in is helping, too. 
What do you do when you feel down?


a spark of something

For me, a trip to the farmers' market quenches my thirst for life. Everything there is in season, it is bountiful and beautiful. Today I stopped in at the little Main Street farmers' market that runs on Wednesday afternoons. I only took $20 to discourage myself from overdoing it, and I ended up spending less than that, but I made away with great stuff! Figs, sunflowers, tomatoes, green peppers, two cinnamon crisp apples, a huge bunch of basil, and a yellow zucchini.
I'm especially happy with the figs and the sunflowers. Sunflowers are Scott's favorite flowers and it made me happy to bring some home for him. Especially after watching The Hours last night and ruminating over that first line of Mrs.Dalloway: "Mrs.Dalloway said she would buy the flowers herself."

And as Virginia Woolf felt a spark of something when she realized she had a first sentence, I too have been feeling a spark of something. I have always wanted to write, always dreamt that someday I would write a novel, or who knows, a book of short stories. The older I get, and more immersed in things-other-than-writing, the more that dream fades away with other girlhood fantasies. However I still harbor a secret yearning to make writing a discipline, if for no other reason than to see if anything comes of it. By now I feel insecure in my creativity, and can't imagine how I could come up with anything to actually write about. But recently I have had some ideas come forth from their shadows, and I am gathering them up, brushing them off, and trying to spend a little time thinking about them, developing them.

But let's get back to figs. I won't take a photo, because quite frankly I don't have any skills in that arena and there are already plenty of wonderful fig photos on the web. But just relive it with me - the green cardboard pint full of figs. The first bite, soft and seedy, savory even. Rather mellow but enchanting. Oh, figs.