Being sick any time is horrible, but the stomach flu in the middle of summer is especially gruesome. When absolutely nothing feels as good as lying in bed moaning, and yet. Wedding cakes don’t just make themselves. (Sadly.) I think I’m creeping back into healthy territory, just in time for an insanely busy couple of weeks.
We did get a quick respite in Idaho last weekend, hanging out at the family cabin on the lake.
It was fairly peaceful, although there were a few varied firework displays. I did a lot of reading:
The Zookeeper’s Wife (Read for my book club. More work than fun. I just don’t like the writing style.)
Lady Almina and The Real Downton Abbey (Not really about Downton Abbey at all, more about Lady Almina and her marriage and husband and kids. But it was delightful to learn that the Lord Carnarvon who is in all those thrilling photographs with Howard Carter at the tomb of King Tut I’ve seen since childhood (both of them in wonderfully formal suits and hats and you KNOW it was a million degrees) was the Lord of Downton Abbey! Or, you know, Highclere Castle, but same-same. Very cool.)
The Book Thief (loved, loved, loved. Loved. Loooooovvvvveeeed. It was a library book on my phone but I think now I have to buy a copy. Or ten. This is one of those you want to give to everyone you know. I didn’t mean to read two books simultaneously about the persecution of Jews in WWII, but it was an interesting coincidence. And then today I heard this Moth podcast featuring Roald Hoffmann. Oof. But seriously. The Book Thief. Beautiful writing, drawings, characters – this will stick with you long after you put it down.)
Swamplandia! (Hm. Saw this reviewed lots of places and thought I’d give it a try since there wasn’t a wait list… Not quite finished yet but not sure I’d recommend it. A lot of wading through swamps of detail to get to discontinuous sections of plot…)
Coming home was much easier than going, for lots of reasons. Here’s a shot of some fields in Idaho:
The wing’s not the best seat in the house but it does make for better photos.
Below is a cake I did recently – the bride is an artist and works in clay; she made a lovely piece of clay “lace” with roses that was displayed at the reception, and all of the guests had written small greetings or wishes that were hung from it. And she and her groom are chocolate fanatics.
So this was a flourless chocolate cake, frosted with dark chocolate ganache, wrapped in dark chocolate, with a cascade of white chocolate roses and leaves. If you’re thinking it sounds awfully heavy, each slice was lightened with a dollop of fresh organic whipped cream and raspberry purée. Decadence on a plate.