The Brick got home Thursday afternoon from Michigan, lugging a suitcase full of apples from the Mama. We (former for me) Michiganders take our apples seriously...and these were Macintoshes, the queen of tastes, the only apple that snaps crisply as you bite into it, yet melts in your mouth.
Macs don't travel well, so you don't find them much in grocery stores. And these, thanks to Southwest Airlines, were a little bruised, so they won't last long. But that's okay -- we've been giving some away, and eating the rest sliced and spread with peanut butter, or in the form of apple crisp.
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup oatmeal
4-5 tablespoons butter
1/3-1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
5 apples, peeled and sliced
Start your oven at 350 degrees. Dump the apples into a small baking pan or ceramic dish. Mix the rest until crumbly (with a fork, or even your hands), then sprinkle on top. Bake for 30 min., or until topping is browned and crunchy. Serves 4, especially when you give it the ultimate topping -- a scoop of vanilla ice cream or yogurt.
It has been a warm, sunny afternoon, the kind Colorado is famous for. The leaves are starting to fade now, sadly, and drift down, but there is still enough color to make the scenery joyous. I spent a few hours cutting up hardwood trimmings, with a break for the Mama's homemade doughnuts. (She sent those back with the Brick, too.) We're supposed to get snow next week -- have to cut and stack enough for use in the fireplace.
The Brick is down the hill, sawing away at the chicken coop expansion. You could barely get into the old coop -- this new version will be much taller: "only 6' 6"," reassured the Brick. (He's 6-foot, and is sick and tired of bending over.) The chickies have been watching suspiciously, scampering back whenever they hear the saws. (Probably planning mayhem. Hey, as long as they keep producing eggs, I don't care.)
Charley pooches around, looking in the woodpile for his buddy the snake. (He likes to toss it into the air, something Mr. Snake doesn't put up with for very long.) Abby just rests, watching the chickens with one eye, and me with the other.
The Brick likes to get in as much work as he can before the sun goes down, so I'll wait. After it gets dark, we'll head to Little Caesar's for a three-meat pizza and crazy bread. (These pizzas are amazing, if you haven't tried them yet, by the way.)
You couldn't ask for a nicer day.