I live in New England and here it is, July 11th, and we've had maybe 5 or 6 days since the beginning of June that have felt summer-like. I think only twice have we had two days in a row of bright sunshine and warm air together. With so many days of gray, it kind of feels like a sunless, damp February, and people are matching the gloomy weather with their gloomy moods. And in a twisted sort of way, when the weather finally broke yesterday with a glorious summer day, our community (along the ocean - huge attraction for out-of-towners) was flooded with tourists. Now, we don't mind that they come and visit. It's just that we do mind when they don't bother to purchase a map or Google directions and stop us wherever we are demanding directions to Newport, Mystic, or the liquor store (no please, no thank you); are impatient while driving in our small community and start honking at us as soon as the traffic light changes, or expect us to mow down the pedestrian that is crossing in the crosswalk in front of us (I was nearly hit by a car from Massachusetts last night at Walmart). And they don't grocery shop in proper clothes. By 'proper' I mean clothes that cover or conceal the areas of one's body that the rest of us really don't want to see. Really.
If you're a summer-time book reader, I'd like to recommend a series that I just finished. The author is Cindy Woodsmall and the series (called Sisters of the Quilt) contains three books: When the Heart Cries; When the Morning Comes; and When the Soul Mends. The first book is about a young Amish girl, Hannah, who is obedient to her family and community and is in love with a young man. Then Hannah suffers a life-altering event, and we see how it impacts her life and those that are close to her. I loved this series. It's a Christian book and I felt immersed in the Amish life-style. It actually inspired me to become bolder in putting the goals that I have in mind in for my life into action.
And finally, this being the weekend where families have a little bit more time to spend together, I'd like to share a new recipe that I found at the website, allrecipes.com. My kids love French Toast for breakfast and this recipes provides the yumminess in a less time consuming manner.
5 cups bread cubes (get a loaf of day-old to save $$)
1-1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup white sugar, divided
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 T butter, softened
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter an 8 x 8 in. baking pan.
2. Line bottom of pan with bread cubes. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, milk, 2 tablespoons sugar, salt and vanilla. Pour egg mixture over bread. Let sit at least 10 minutes. Dot with butter.
3. Combine remaining sugar with cinnamon and sprinkle over the top. Bake in preheated oven about 50 - 60 minutes, until top is golden.
*Note - the inside of the casserole, while being completely cooked, with be soft - almost custard-like.
Serve warm with maple syrup. Enjoy!
I hope you all have a blessed weekend!