More Springtime Photographs from Rancho San Rafael Park ~ 31 March 2015

From today’s quick walk at lunch time with my sister.

Lilacs are blooming a month early.

Lilacs are blooming a month early.


MINE! ALL MINE!

MINE! ALL MINE!


Because everyone needs to be mooned by a honeybee.

Because everyone needs to be mooned by a honeybee.


Scrub Jay.

Scrub Jay.


Mallards.

Mallards.


P1130268
P1130262

Wordless Wednesday ~ Rancho San Rafael Park ~ Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Rancho San Rafael Park, Reno, Nevada

Our 90F degree April Day opened up the Lilacs

About the only good thing about Sunday’s miserably hot Spring day was that the lilacs opened up!

Variegated Lilac.

Damn Wind…big sigh

After being in the 70’s for a few days we are heading back into the typical Northern Nevada Spring…

Wind.

Rain.

Wind.

Snow.

And MORE WIND!

I hate the wind. And I’m not too keen on that 28F morning temp coming up as the Pear tree is starting to blossom out! Wind and Cold Temps…not good for pear blossoms!

I think the lilacs have a better chance of surviving.

Columbine can weather most anything…

So do the Tulips ~

I have to get going…the bird feeder outside my work window is empty and the finches are staring me down.

Tuesday’s Rambles ~ 13 April 2010

My brain is a bit mushy the last few days…finished the budget for the new fiscal year that is coming up, and the weather has given me a pounding headache. So…it’s a ramble day.

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Thought I’d share a Gingerbread recipe that I’m going to try tonight…I’ve been craving gingerbread for some reason. The recipe is from a 1946 copy of Woman’s Home Companion Cook Book, page 718.

Cake Flour, 2 cups
Baking powder, 2 teaspoons
Baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon
Salt, 1/2 teaspoon
Ginger, 1-1/2 teaspoons
Cinnamon, 1 teaspoon
Shortening, 1/3 cup
Sugar, 1/2 cup
Egg, 1
Molasses, light, 2/3 cup
Sour milk or buttermilk, 3/4 cup

Sift flour; measure; add baking powder, soda, salt and spices; sift again.

Cream shortening; add sugar gradually; cream together until light and fluffy.

Add well-beaten egg (unbeaten if electric mixer is used); beat thoroughly; add molasse.

Add dry ingredients alternately with sour milk or buttermilk, stirring only enough after each addition to blend thoroughly.

Pour into a greased square pan 8x8x2 inches.Bake in a moderate oven (350F) about 50 minutes.

Serve with whipped cream

If you want you can use this batter for an Apple Gingerbread Upside-down Cake: Follow instructions for apple upside-down cake (p. 717), substituting gingerbread batter for dessert cake batter:

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a cake pan; add 1/4 cup brown sugar firmly packed and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon; cover with about 2-1/2 cups apple wedges cut from firm cooking apples; sprinkle with raisins and pecan halves. Pour batter over fruit and proceed as directed above. (bake in a moderate oven (350F) 45-50 minutes. Invert pan on a cooling rack; let cake remain in inverted pan 1 minute to allow sirup to drain onto cake. Serve with whipped cream.

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The peach tree is starting to bloom!

Lilacs are leafing out and growing blooms.

Lucy starting a great adventure...didn't get very far. World's too big for the wee lass.

4 star blocks finished for Hannah's lap quilt.

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I’ve been reading Miss Read’s Chronicles of Fairacre (set in the 1950’s English countryside) ~ the first three books comprising of Village School, Village Diary and Storm in the Village. Thanks April for the recommendation! Last night while reading I found this very funny to me so I thought I’d share (told you my brain has turned to mush).

Pages 167-168, Chronicles of Fairacre, 1977 copy (the school was holding “sports”):

Perhaps the high-light of the afternoon was an unrehearsed incident. Mrs. Pratt’s white goat, attracted by the noise, had broken her collar and pushed through the hedge to see what was going on. Fastidiously, walking with neat, dainty steps, she approached the backs of the spectators and before anyone had noticed her, she picked up the hem of Mrs. Partridge’s flowered silk frock. Gradually, the goat worked it into her mouth, a sardonic smile curling her lips, tossing her head gently up and down, until at last a sudden tug caused the vicar’s wife to look round and the hue and cry began.

Startled, the goat skipped away under the rope and charged down to see its friends, who were waiting, in pairs with their legs tied together, to run in the three-legged race. Squealing with excitement, and weak with laughter, they lumbered off in all directions, the goat prancing among them, bleating. Confusion reigned, some children sprawled on the grass, others attempted to capture the goat, and others rushed yelling to their parents. At last Mr. Willet grabbed the animal’s horns and slipped a rope noose over her head. Resigning herself to capture, the goat trotted meekly after him to the gate, accompanied by many young admirers.

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Garden update: Boxes still not made, but I did get them sawed into 4 foot lengths. I’ve repotted the tomatoes, corn, and cucumbers. Took them outside last Saturday, placed them on the plant rack with a screen over them so they didn’t get direct sunlight. Perked them up! They’re back inside.

Friday Ramblings in Nevada

Well…I made it to the end of the work week. Another day of being wide awake at 4:30am with my mind racing about all the things I need to do here at work. 😦

So to give my wee brain time to recoop I thought I’d post some banana recipes (I have a few ripe ones at home and needed something to make) and a few pictures.

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The Sensation Lilac (Syringa vulgaris ‘Sensation’) that I planted in April of 2008 is about to bloom! I’m so excited…it will have single reddish buds that will open to deep purple edged in white.

lilacapril091

A few of the Lemon Queen sunflowers that I planted for the bee project are starting to come up.

img_7301

Digging up sod from the front yard (we have way too much lawn) so I can put in another garden area. Will put up a decorative fence of some sort to divide the lawn from the garden. All the grass from the shovel back is coming out.

sodremoval

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Below are two recipes that I’ve tried…and both are real tasty! Enjoy.

French Toast Stuffed with Bananas and Pecans
recipe from Williams-Sonoma Breakfasts & Brunches, page 66

bananafrenchtoast

6 eggs
1/4 cup milk
4 very ripe bananas
1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans (original is walnuts, but I like pecans)
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
8 slices egg bread
4 Tbsp butter
powdered sugar
jam or pure maple syrup

In a large, shallow bowl, beat eggs until lightly frothy. Stir in milk. Set aside.

Peel nanners into a small bowl and mash. Stir in nuts and nutmeg. Spread the banana-nut mixture evenly over half the bread slices, leaving space around the edges. Top with the remaining bread slices and press down lightly to seal.

Place sandwiches into the egg mixture. Turn gently until evenly saturated on both sides. In a frying pan or griddle, big enough to make all sandwiches, melt 2 Tbsp of butter over medium heat. Add sandwiches and fry until the undersides are golden brown, about 2-3 minutes. Melt other 2 Tbsp and then flip sandwiches.

Place on plates, sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with jam or syrup.

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Sweet Omelet Souffle with Caramelized Bananas
recipe from Williams-Sonoma Breakfasts & Brunches, page 24

bananaomelet

6 Tbsp butter
2 firm but ripe bananas, peeled and cut into 1/4″ slices
1/4 cup sugar
6 eggs, separated
2 Tbsp powdered sugar
pinch of salt

In a small frying pan over medium heat, melt 3 Tbsp of the butter. Add the banana slices and, using a fork, turn to coat them well with butter. Saute until very lightly browned, about 2-3 minutes. Sprinkle the sugar over the bananas. Reduce the heat slightly and continue to saute until the sugar melts. Remove from heat, cover to keep warm, and set aside.

Put egg whites in a bowl. Add the powdered sugar and salt and beat until very frothy but still fairly liquid. In another bowl, beat the yolks until blended. Gradually stir the whites into the yolks until fully incorporated.

In a 8″ nonstick pan, over medium heat, melt the remaining 3 Tbsp of butter. Add the eggs and as they began to set, carefully lift the edges and gently push them to the center, tilting the pan slightly to allow the liquid egg on top to flow undernegth. Continue to cook the eggs until they are almost completely set but still moist on top.

Arrange the bananas evenly over half of the omelet. Beginning with the banana-covered side of the omelet, slide the omelet from the pan to a warmed serving plate and, when halfway out, flip the pan over to fold the olemet in half over the bananas. Cut in half and serve at once.