Solar Tracking

Solar Tracking
How low can you go? Snow and ice and cancelled school.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Balance

It is the weekend of the Fall Equinox, a time to gather in the harvest, count up the blessings, ask forgiveness for the sins of the year, and prepare for the winter. Get your life into balance before the long slide into the Dark Times of Winter. It’s been a lovely fall here in the Northwest this year—warm and sunny, dry and clear for days on end. I believe we should shift our school calendar to reflect this season—stay in school during the rainy month of June and be free in September. But school has begun, both high school and college, and the struggle for balance continues.



Last Thursday night, I witnessed a rather frighteningly out of control party. At ten past ten, I heard some voices and decided to walk around the block and find out where the sound was coming from. I waked past the house o the corner and there were about 20 people there, loud, but approachable. “Okay,” I thought, “I’ll come back to them when I finish my lap.” By the time I walked around the three blocks that consist of our party watch lap, at 10:30, there were cars parked in the streets, people screaming at each other, hordes of large aggressive males walking towards the house, taking up the entire sidewalk, and about 150 people in the yard, with more coming. They were all consulting their cell phones. I called the cops. They arrived quickly.

We spent the rest of the weekend in Eastern Oregon, camping on the Metolious, a beautiful cool clear fly fishing river lined with campgrounds and summer houses. Our favorite campground is near Camp Sherman. It is not trampled by too much love AND there is a great little store within easy walking distance. Mark visits it at least twice; he loves the sandwiches and iced tea and they have ice cream sandwiches as well. It is dark and quiet; for some reason, few people camp after Labor Day. We napped and read, went hiking into Marion Lake on Saturday, and had a fire in the evening. A raccoon stole our apples off of the table, but that was all the night life we had to deal with. We came home on Sunday afternoon, still spacey from the hours of peace and quiet. I started a batch of Challah in honor of Rosh Hashanah and Mark did the laundry. On Sunday night, we will watch the Harvest Moon rise from Chip Ross Park. Peaceful rituals carry us a long way in autumn.





Round Challah for a sweet year

I use the “Fresh Bread in Five Minutes a Day” system from Mother Earth News

1.5 T of yeast, dissolved in 3 cups of warm water
1.5 T salt
.25 cups of honey
1 or 2 fresh eggs from the back yard
3 T of melted butter
6.5 cups of white flour

Stir it all together, cover with a plastic bag, and let rise on the counter for two hours. It will be a wet dough.
Toss in the fridge overnight.
The next day, take out half of the dough and form it into a ball. You will need flour on your hands. Let it relax on a bed of cornmeal for about 20 minutes while you preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Slide into the oven, onto a baking stone and bake for about 40 minutes, until it thumps hollow, not damp. It will brown because of the honey.

Eat.



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