a new england fall day . . .

by mulberryshoots

fall flowers from the garden . . .

fall flowers from the garden . . .

The weather has been temperate lately here in New England. The light is soft in the morning and late afternoons, the sun is out for most of the day and the temperature has been in the 60’s and 70’s. Good weather to pay our respects to Tom Menino, Mayor of Boston for twenty years who died yesterday a.m. around 9 o’clock. Tributes on TV have shown examples of his achievements, especially in the revitalization of Boston, his work with the underprivileged and his connections with a wide spectrum of people from all sorts of venues, businesses and walks of life. We are lucky that he was such a strong champion for the city of Boston, the people who live and visit here and that he served with so much dedication and resolve. So, here’s to Tom Menino for a life, well-lived.

Speaking of well-lived lives, a book arrived a couple of days ago that exemplifies living with passion (and luxury) in the Medoc countryside of France. Mimi Thorisson’s cookery book, illuminated (that’s the only word for it) by the photographs taken by her husband, Oddur Thorisson, is a cooking biography of a family with seven offspring (his two and their five) and terriers (he breeds them) too numerous to keep count. I had pre-ordered the book from Amazon because her blog, “Manger” had been previewing recipes for some months now in anticipation of their book’s publication.

Seeing her home, countryside and dishes serves as an exciting source of inspiration to live as wholly in my own kitchen and home as I can, each day. I have been remembering that I have a pair of large shino dinner plates in the cupboard that haven’t been used in awhile. Ditto for some other earthenware plates glazed with off-white nautilus spirals. If one is domestically inclined, this kind of book is truly one to savor, admire and enjoy. Kudos to the Thorissens and the passion with which they seem to do everything (looking for cepes in the wet woods for hours to no avail; then making ravioli with a handful that belatedly appear.) I’m glad that the two missing puppies were returned by the nefarious/mischevious fellow who brought them back on the day before Christmas for a “price.”

Later today, I’m planning to meet my daughter C. for afternoon coffee at Verrill Farms in Concord near the high school where she teaches. Along the way there, I’ll stop by Idylwylde Farms in Acton to pick up two small Bell & Evans chickens to make Judy Rodger’s recipe, (roast chicken with bread salad) to serve dinner guests tomorrow evening. In the roasting pan will go carrots, onions and some turnips. As a side dish, I’ll use up the portobella mushrooms in the fridge and stuff them with creamed spinach and garlicky crumbs. Verrill Farms makes delicious pumpkin pie which I’m hoping to pick up for dessert.

We are grateful for these beautiful fall days and feel fortunate in the midst of a swirling hostile world of political crises to be able to be with family, friends and each other.