Saturday, October 20, 2012

Aransas National Wildlife Refuge

We set out today on a much anticipated road trip with our two scooters.  We loaded up and headed for Aransas National Wildlife Refuge.  We hoped to see the whooping cranes, but they had not arrived yet.  The  whooping cranes migrate from Wood Buffalo National Park in the Northwest Territories of Canada.   They migrate either in pairs or small flocks the 2500 miles to the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge arriving in October and staying until March.

Although the whooping cranes had not arrived we enjoyed a day of nature.  The refuge contains 115,00 acres of native Texas animals and wildflowers.   Today we saw a raccoon, deer, and fox.  Although we have seen alligators,  javelina, hawks, armadillo and many more animals.

We drove our scooters around the 16 mile loop.  A peaceful and scenic drive out by the bay, through the oak groves and grassy marshes.

If you are ever in the South Texas Coastal area, it is well worth a visit. 

Sunday, September 2, 2012

My Buddy

It has been awhile since I have posted.  Mainly due to my work schedule, but I also purchased a scooter.  Not any scooter but a Buddy 150 CC scooter.   He has been taking up all my free time.  I had named him Jacques, but my husband started calling him Sancho and that has stuck.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

What Childhood Memories Do You Miss?

zombies are coming

When I was going up, I use to spend the summers at my grandparents house in Alabama.  By the end of summer their garden was overflowing with ripe vegetables and my grandparents and I would start canning.  I never questioned why we did it.  I only knew that it was my job to snap off the ends from the green beans and put the endless beans in a bowl.  We also prepared the fresh vegetables for freezing.

Later in life, after I was married, my husband and I brought a house that had many fruit trees.  When my grandmother came to visit us one fall the fruit trees and grape vines were all ripe.  My grandmother must have thought I was crazy because I had not started picking the fruit and making ready to start canning the fruit.  She hastily started the process.  We ended up with applesauce, apple butter, preserved apples, peaches, grapes and plums.  I think my husband and I had jars of fruit for two years.  I must say that it was wonderful smelling the fresh aromas of the fruit and later tasting the rewards of our efforts. 

I have not canned any fruit or vegetables for quite some time.  After I got out  of the Navy I went to work in food processing.  Of course I enjoy the electrical and mechanical aspect of food processing.  I also love automation and much to others dismay, I am always looking for new ways to make tasks easier, safer and faster with out losing quality. 

This past weekend I was looking for recipes to make for our anniversary dinner.  I ran across one of the recipes that my grandmother had hand written for me for canning the apples.  A flood of memories overwhelmed me and the simplicity and joys of the days I used to spend with my grandparents canning and freezing our summer’s bounty. 

It made me wonder how much quality time is lost with family with all the conveniences of today.  It is cheaper to go a pick up a can of green beans or a jar of preserves than it is to make it yourself.  The days we spent preparing the food to freeze and can were some of my best memories.  Laughing and joking as we prepared the food. 

What traditions or time that you spent with family has changed since you were going up due to modern conveniences?