Lots of Nature related things are going on around here, as usual. That, and some running and some good food, pretty much sums up the theme of this post (and many other posts). I like to post these rather mundane things sometimes to keep a journal of our lives and to keep my in-laws (who are in Kyiv, Ukraine for another year) and friends & family posted on our exciting lives (who doesn't think grasshoppers and huckleberries are exciting?). So I apologize for boring anybody, but c'est la vie.
The Love Bug
Eleanor's pet grasshopper lived with us for about 4 days before making his way to the Great Beyond. Grassy had some health problems when Eleanor rescued him from the sidewalk - he couldn't walk, hop, flit, or flutter about. Eleanor was a doting nurse to the poor guy (or girl?). She fed and watered him regularly, and discovered that Grassy really liked the rose petals from our flower bed. It was an incredible experience to see her usually holding him in one hand and feeding him with the other. Grassy ate voraciously, regardless of his position, whether lying on his back, lying in Ellie's hand, or stretched out on the walkway. When Eleanor placed drops of water in the flower petals, Grassy slurped up the water like a puppy. I never thought I'd get attached to a grasshopper, but Grassy won us all over. Cute little thing. He's on to greener pastures now, hopefully with his hoppers back in order.
The Great Outdoors
We took the kids on a hike around Horseshoe Lake last week, then made the extra little jaunt over to Cave Falls (Yellowstone). Last time we came to Cave Falls (4 years ago), there was a cave. It has now collapsed and the large cavern is just a pile of rocks. The Falls are still as lovely as ever.
Huckleberry ice cream
Oh, as an unexpected surprise while hiking around Horseshoe Lake, we came upon tons (I exaggerate) of wild huckleberries (are there such thing as cultivated huckleberries?). It's somewhat bewildering that it takes 2 hours to pick 2 cups of the little gems (okay, I'm exaggerating again - but it did take a long time). Turns out that two cups of the berries is just what you need to make about 1 1/2 quarts of delicious, fresh homemade huckleberry ice cream.
Melt 2 Tbs. butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add 2-3 tsp. minced garlic and saute 3 minutes.Roll dough into an 8 x 12 inch rectangle. Spread garlic mixture over top of dough. Cut into 4 strips vertically, then horizontally to get 16 (3x2 inch) pieces. Place pieces in a greased 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 inch loaf pan. (The arrangement will look like an accordion pleat.) I tip the loaf pan up a little to help stack the rectangles, turning each one with a corner up opposite to the rectangle before and after so it alternates. When I'm done, I set the pan down and move everything to fill the pan evenly. Cover with a cloth and let rise in a warm place until slices fill pan, about 1 hour.Preheat oven to 375 F.Bake about 30 minutes, until golden brown, placing foil on top after 10 minutes. Immediately invert bread onto a wire rack; cool slightly. Serve warm. Makes 1 loaf. Serves 8.