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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Bob vs. Stubby

There is no love lost between these two competitors. When they enter the cage (aka barnyard) IT - IS - ON! Stubby gets her coyote face on, snaps her jaws, yips and darts at Bob. Bob doesn't even flinch. He lets Stubby take a couple of stabs and then he charges her. She takes off running, only to come back for Round 2, and Round 3 and Round 4. If we let them, it would go on from sun up to sun down.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Happy Birthday Grandma!

We gathered recently to celebrate Grandma Mary's 90th birthday!
As most of you know, I have a BIG family that can sometimes overwhelm. We are missing a few, but I'm going to attempt to name everyone. Front row (l-r): Tatum Holestine, Keeli Holestine, Manda Moore, Rikard Holestine, Charlie Lyons. Middle row (l-r): Bailey Gilchrist, Kelly Lyons, Tabitha Lopez, Shaney Lyons, BIRTHDAY GIRL MARY LYONS, Jim Lyons, Madison Lyons, Michael Lyons. Back row (l-r): Kate' Lyons-Holestine (that's me), Rick Holestine, Jennifer, Brian Lux, Joyce Lyons, Brett Lyons, Tami Lyons.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Fruity Cordials

I will pick the last of the raspberries from the patch tonight and head out to a local orchard (Cherry Hill) tomorrow for my last batch of fresh picked cherries. I need a few more pie cherries to dry and maybe make a cherry crisp.

After every batch of jam I've made the past few weeks, there has been enough berries to do something with, but not enough for another batch of jam. What to do?! Then, I remembered a good friend saying something about cordial so I searched the internet for recipes. Be careful what you seek, there are nearly as many cordial recipes as there are people who drink cordial.

The raspberry cordial (on the right) is made with 2 lbs. of whole berries, 2 cups of vodka and 1 cup of sugar. It took about 5 days for the sugar to dissolve and the fruit to start breaking down. You can see a layer of seeds at the bottom of the jar.

The cherry cordial is made with a mix of bing and rainier cherries. I had two large bowls full of cherries and am home alone for a few days. It contains 2 lbs. cherries, 2 cups sugar, 3 whole allspice, 1 cup of brandy and 1 cup of rum. Hopefully the bing cherries will add some of their deep red color to the mix. I don't like the dirty look of the rum/brandy mix. The sugar dissolved better in this mixture, but you can still see a thin film of sugar at the bottom of the jar. I'm sure this is going to be one "sweet" drink when it is ready.

I used these wonderful 2 quart Kerr canning jars that I rescued from my aunt's garage. As a kid I remember her making grape juice in them - it was wonderful stuff. I'm hoping these cordial recipes turn out as well.