I consider myself an eternal optimist. I don’t think I am (always) naive but I do prefer to think that there are reasons, real ones, to be hopeful about the future. However, this week, with the RNC, Covid-19, terrible economy, travel restrictions, unemployment, etc. I have to admit, I felt like throwing in the towel. Throwing in the towel for me means simply getting into a despondent mood, not wanting to read, write or participate in anything social. It never means suicide, or taking drugs or going completely off line which I know happens to a lot of people. I never take this gift for granted, I know that addiction is a terrible thing.
We continue to see unacceptable violence in the world. The weather, with floods, fires and gas explosions, is not on our side these days. In this moment, I can hear the thunder rolling outside my window and I see the relentless rain flooding my small, unkempt garden. It just feels like too much to bear. I want to throw myself into bed, with the covers over my head and sleep until tomorrow. If I lived alone, frankly I don’t know what I would be doing. As it is, I do have a husband and dog that keep me on my toes. Thank heavens for them.
I have been doing well in keeping up with my blogs. I am proud of that. It is not small accomplishment. I am a perfectionist. When I set my mind to something or make a commitment, I like to honor it. My five blogs have been getting the attention they require and I have been getting feedback from readers and even the occasional “follow” which is always such a boost. I have a friend whose total followers are 60 and he is over the moon about that. I have close to 300 followers and I complain (not often, but sometimes) that “no one” is reading my blogs. It’s a question of perspective, isn’t it?
On Tuesday, I ventured to a Costco-like store. On impulse, I purchased a bag of Granny Smith apples. When I got them home, my husband was curious about why I bought them since I have often remarked that they are not my favorite apple. I, unthinkingly, replied that I felt like making an apple pie. He was delighted. Apple pies (with or without the “a la mode”) are his favorite, and homemade apple pies are truly special. I had no time to do anything on Wednesday since I spent the day housekeeping (Covid-19 has eliminated my weekly cleaning lady!) and cleaning windows. Yesterday, I spent the day writing and completely forgot about pie making until bedtime. This morning I knew I had to tackle the project.
It has been a long time since I made an apple pie. For the last decade or so, all my Thanksgiving pies have been pumpkin (with canned stuff) and pecan. Aside from making the crust (which I am pretty good at) those pies only call for mixing ingredients together and baking. That’s not exactly the same thing with apple pies, though. I am a clock watcher. Before I start doing a sink full of dishes, I assess the situation, glance at the clock and calculate how long it will take me to complete the task. It is a personal challenge. Most of the time I am correct within a minute or two. This morning when I began the pie making, I did a similar challenge. I calculated one hour for the process. I was off quite a bit.
First of all, the fact that I have not made an apple pie meant that I had no way of knowing how long it would take to peel, core and slice 3 lbs. of apples. Then I had to search for a good recipe and make sure all ingredients were in hand. I wanted the pie to be worth the effort which meant making the crust according to instructions (not overhanding the dough, chilling, rolling, etc.). And then of course, there is the baking itself which involved high temperature for 20 minutes, lower temperature for 30 minutes, and a final 10 minutes after glazing…then the resting. By the time I took the pie out of the oven, 4 hours had elapsed since I began. The kitchen smells like Christmas and I am dying to try the pie, but I still need to wait a few hours for it to cool down completely for best results.
Now I remember why I have not made an apple pie in a decade and probably won’t do it again too soon!
images my own