Which is your favorite, summer or winter? That question came to me this morning in an email. I immediately answered "winter". I just don't like the heat of summer. As I tell folks so often, you can always add another layer of clothing or a quilt or afghan or something to warm you up in the winter, but you can't take enough off to cool you down in the summer.
Today at lunch, I remembered what I really like about summer--seasonal fruit. I had the wonderful blessing of growing up in a home where fresh fruit was available in the summer--not just the bananas, apples, and oranges that grace my kitchen table on a good day, but peaches, blackberries, raspberries, nectarines, and strawberries, my all-time favorite! When we first moved into the house my children remember as Granny's house, there was a strawberry patch next door--the whole lot next door, to be more exact! And, as I remember now, those were, without a doubt, the BEST strawberries ever. Not only did we have those strawberries available to us (for a price of course, but much less than what they are now), but about two blocks away lived a woman who made her summer money selling blackberries and raspberries!
I loved the month of June because of those berries. I can remember on several occasions being sent to Mrs. Shockey's house to buy blackberries or raspberries, then bringing them home for Mom to "fix". Fixing was no big deal--wash them, add sugar, put them in the ice box--the same way she "fixed" strawberries, except the strawberries were also sliced. Then after supper, while we were sitting around watching television, Mom would go out in the kitchen and come back with a bowl of berries for everyone, sometimes with ice cream but often, just the berries. Without a doubt, that was my FAVORITE summer food.
Yesterday, I went to Kroger's to buy bagels, bread, and bananas, the three B's--and you thought it was Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms, right? Anyway, I also bought a pound of strawberries. Today at lunch, I washed some of them, cut them up, and put some Splenda on them. Then I ate them, right away--no waiting for that syrupy liquid to gather in the bottom of the bowl, just down the hatch.
And what does this have to do with growing up, you may ask? Weeeelll, until today, I waited for Mom to fix them for me! (Or I got them out at a restaurant or at someone's pot luck or something.) Finally, today, I realized that Mom wasn't going to be fixing my berries any more, and if I wanted to eat them, I needed to fix them myself. So, see? I'm getting to, finally, after 61 years, be a big girl!
Love to all, and God bless