There has been a lot of fruit on the trees in the backyard! I headed out of the city to help pick fruit for the weekend (oh, and to go to the beach and eat lobster!). Pre-hurricane winds and rain caused some of the top branches on the larger peach tree to snap so my dad propped up the tree with various landscape implements (a la shovels and rake handles) so I hurried to pick the fruit. I picked 2/3 of the trees by twisting the peaches at the top of the stem and if they ‘released’ easily, I knew they were ripe.

I left about ten pounds of fruit behind for my mom to get started on (I plan to help this weekend!) and then headed off to the beach. Stay tuned for samplings of the fruits of our labor later! And – I completely my Lobster 5 Ways Mission! Whew! I was worried that I wouldn’t complete it before the end of August but I did it two ways last weekend: 1. boiled lobster dinner & 2. lobster bisque. I was SO excited to eat my boiled lobster that I didn’t

take a picture (whoops!). I also picked up a delicious batch of lobster bisque from Mullaney’s Seafood in Cohasset, MA and I managed to stretch it across a few days (barely), paired with grilled whole wheat toast brushed with EVOO and sea salt. Mmmm.

Hunks of lobster love!

In other news, these were the beautious skies awaiting me on my day off Friday as I prepared for my big camping trip to VT! Looks perfect right?

Well, unless you have been living in a cave for the past week, you know that a MASSIVE storm was headed up the East Coast…but mysteriously, not pointed to VT (at least not initially). So I happily packed the day away, stocking

up on yummy camping food (smores! trail mix! veggie burgers!), buying new fun gear (camping chairs = $6! new cooler!), and I took off without (much) of a care in the world Saturday morning…only to reach VT, twenty minutes from the campground, and have them inform me that they had decided to shut down the entire park system!!! Boohoohoo :(. I wasn’t totally surprised because the State of NH had determined the same course of action, evacuating all parks, canceling reservations for huts in the White Mtn. National Forest, the works. However, they had made this determination days earlier…so major disappointment ensued. Before I turned around in Quechee, VT however, I stopped to gaze into the Gorge and discover the meaning of life, and then I did a wine tasting flight (don’t worry, I had help ;)) at a favorite VT winery that recently set up a remote tasting room in Southern

VT. Snow Farm Winery is on South Hero, a small island in a larger island chain located on the northern end of Lake Champlain, and is VT’s oldest winery. I went there for a school field trip to learn about VT-made sustainable businesses years ago and have since taken friends and family up there when I was working on a land conservation project in the area. They hold summer concerts, sit upon acres of conserved land, and gaze right out over the vines into the lake. I bought a bottle of the 2010 Vidal Blanc and they gave me this cute tasting glass too! So I got a souvenier at least on my trip to VT!





On the way back to the city, I stopped at my aunt’s lake house and tried out her new boat…

and I did some backflips off the dock.

The photographer couldn’t catch my remarkable speed so the shot is only half my body but I included the picture just to prove I was swimming. The water was perfect – so still and cool enough to lower your body temperature on a super humid day, which it was. Once I returned to the city, the storm hit pretty hard so I made the most of it watching the surf from Castle Island in Southie, playing Scrabble(!), and eating ‘smores…sorta: 

With that, I’m glad my friends are all safe and accounted for in VT. Even though I was super bummed about the trip being cancelled, it is better to be safe than sorry. And I’ve already picked a reschedule weekend. 🙂
How did you ride out Hurricane Irene? Did it wash away your weekend plans (or was I the only one naive enough to think I could get away with camping?!!!)?