Summer Lovin’

Man, I just love summer! So much going on and we have lots of activity!

Last weekend, the whole family went ATV riding on some local trails and camped out. It was a relaxing and exciting day through the mountains. I had never been with my boys and didn’t think I would enjoy much but I did! My little guy just had a blast!

He just loved it.
This week my family has come in to visit. We have a fun trip to NYC planned and today we are shopping at a flea market type place called the Windmill in Oleans, NY. It is a quaint place! And then later we are going out to my grandparents’ lake cottage and have some water fun with the jet skis and swimming. My little guy loves to swim. Yesterday we were at Knoebel’s, a fab fun amusement park in Elysburg, Pa. We go usually once a year and they look forward to it. Derek loves the Sploosh, a waterslide ride on a big boat thing. He gets soaking wet!

he is too cute!
How are your summer plans going?

Piece of Pie! 

Not cake.

We missed strawberry picking this year 😦 I even bought a huller for the occasion and now it shall wait til next year. It is not like we are suffereing a strawberry loss. There are 8 half pints of jam yet on the deep freezer.

However, my eagle-eye husband saw that there was blueberry picking up the road. Apparently, there has always been blueberry picking and I have not noticed. Um, we’ve lived on this road for 8.5 years, I don’t know how I missed such a thing! He says it is because I am on my phone yabbing and not paying attention. Maybe there is a kernal of truth there…

In any case, we set off for berry picking!

My boys diligently picking away.

Someone went for the green ones…thankfully only a bit, so not too much paid for unripe berries. Total, there was about 18.5 pounds.

My plans were jam and pie filling. I made a dozen half pints of jam and one pie. The rest I froze. My dear husband reminded me that I needed to bring something to the family picnic. So, I set off for pie making.

I had never made a pie before. Other than taking one out of the box and defrosting. I don’t own a rolling pin because I am realy not much of a baker. I even had to buy pie pans. I used a water bottle tumbler for rolling.

I messed up once with rolling each crust. I just couldn’t figure out how to really get it off the cutting board. Then I saw a photo of the crust on the rolling pin and rolling the crust off! I need one I see now if I keep up on this pie making.

mmm…pie filling! I sorely underestimated the amount of sugar that blueberry proccessing took. That is why I ended up freezing so many. I also was nervous with how sweet the pie was going to be. I used two different recipes and kinda morphed them together. I googled blueberry pie recipes and chose the Betty Crocker version and Perfect Blueberry Pie filling on I didnt have lemon rind and so just used lemon juice and I only used cinnamon, no nutmeg. And I did an egg wash on the crust. I had a small split in my tpo crust but that was okay since I had to cut slits. I also fluted the crust. I had to look that up as well. Not sure if my “flute” really was formed right lol I tried!

I bought those pie crust protectors because I hate burnt crust and my pie was not going to have such things happen to it. Isn’t she a beaut!!

My family said it was the best blueberry pie. My job is done. I just love how tangy sweet it is and oh so fresh! I feel Betty Crocker in my spirit!

I did also make some muffins…I wasn’t really impressed by the flavor. I wish they had been a little sweeter and I attempted brown sugar in the second batch, they were a bit better. My husband had wished I had those big sugar crystals and so do I. Three dozen muffins. I baked for 8 hours. My feet and back were so sore.

I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend for those in the States. Independence day is one of my favorite holidays. I truly remember how free I feel. We had a rainy night but it didn’t deter us. My little guy just loves the fireworks!

We did have one other damper on our day. Someone called the police on my teen for driving in the creek. The boys have blazed some trails along the creek enbankment and often drive in the water. We were told there had been several calls. The police didn’t have any care about how they were driving in the neighborhood just as long as they don’t get hit by a car; the problem was with the Department of Conservation. FYI, in Pa it is illegalto drive around in the creeks. You must forge the most direct path across because there is damage to the substrate environment. That was a $200 lesson. Now we know they can drive on the roads; just not in the water!