I anticipated running around like a beheaded barnyard fowl on Sabbath morning, the 26th. And I did.
I was up early and traipsing between house and car, trailer and car, shed and car, armed with a flashlight and laden with Stuff. But after
a nice game of Tetris Packing the Car, all got loaded and I managed to still cut a fine dash for church in some new-to-me thrift store treasures (red silky shirt and silver/black striped tie) AND get on the road to church by 8.
Sabbath school went well. We left church about 12.30. I read a 96 page book (Taught by a Tiger) and then we stopped around 1.30 at a rest area along I-5 to eat lunch, because I was starving.
We had bulgur burgers (or, as a friend once humourously referred to them, Bildeberger bulgur burgers) and hummus on rye chapatis, kale chips, carrot sticks, and cowgirl cookies (well, my version was cocoanut, walnuts and cranberries). I told Mr Pine Nut that I’m pretty sure these are the cookies I’ve been waiting for all my life. “Well, I’m glad you finally met,” he said dryly, “so you can get married.”
We were vastly entertained peoplewatching at the rest stop. There was a young boy striking dramatic poses by trees for his mom to take pictures, and the couple in the SUV nearest us spent close to 20 minutes messing around adjusting their back seat and then shutting themselves into the back of the car from the inside. Um.
We dropped off the Pumpkitten at our friend K’s, who graciously opened her home to him despite his inability to get along with her cats on previous visits. We visited a while with her, met her husband and baby and stepdaughter, and were off on our way again at 4.20. Mr Pine Nut got mixed up and thought we needed to get back on I-5 and 45 minutes later I realised what had happened after we’d inched along for like ever in traffic. We were supposed to get on 84, actually.
So he crossed back into Oregon on 205, got on 84, and all was well again. We stopped at rest stop to eat parfaits and pee. I drove the rest of the way to Yakistan and we arrived at my dad’s at 9.
The girls were very energetic after having been asleep in the car. GooGoo helped grandpa make cookies. He asked, “Whole wheat flour or regular flour?”
“Regular flour,” said GooGoo.
“Regular flour, regular flour,” singsonged my dad as he got out the regular flour. When he opened a new bag of brown sugar he sniffed it “to make sure it wasn’t tainted with hashish.”
That’s my dad’s sense of humour for you.
It was 11.30 before we were finally in bed.
I also got the news that I had a new nephew, and K messaged us that Spot was being a ferocious furball, hissing and having to be lured into their room with treats because he would Not Allow Them to Pick Him Up. Oh joy. Poor K.
One thing I took to my dad on this trip was the plum conserve I made for him back in September. It’s from the mother of my best friend Edda and goes way back. What is a conserve, you ask? It’s a combination of fruit, dried fruit, and nuts, and you spread it on bread. My batch came out super thick and didn’t spread very well, but Edda’s mom says that’s not too abnormal. So.
4 lbs. plums (about 8 cups cut up)
4 T lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp lemon zest
1 c raisins
4 1/2 – 6 c sugar
1 c walnuts
Wash and pit your plums. Chop nuts. Combine all ingredients in a pot except nuts and cook until thick. This may take a while and you will want to be stirring very often. When the mixture is thick enough, remove from heat and stir in nuts.
To process, pour into sterilised jars to within 1/2″ of top. Put on a lid and a ring firmly and process 10 minutes in a boiling water bath. This recipe yields 3 pints.