Sunday, August 21, 2016

rush river produce

I'm taking a very brief break from my recounting of our Maine trip to share our day today. It was one of those perfect summery days where it wasn't too hot, the windows are thrown open, and the bugs are mellow.

Our dear family friend Cecilia has returned to teach at the school again, this time as lead guide in the Children's House. We brought her along to Rush River Produce, our annual blueberry picking spot.

Each year, the children have made these enormous leaps in development, and it's impressive to watch as their personalities have begun to blossom in the process. This year, Finn took charge of the main basket and would tromp up and down the nearby rows, telling us he was picking blueberries and he was just fine on his own, thankyouverymuch.

Maya, as in last year, picked a great number of blueberries to eat and her favorites remain the small, taut, tart ones. She kept getting excited at the "good" spots, whereas Finn kept declaring that he'd collected hundreds already.

I love the people who run this place. It's gentle and laid back. There are weather-worn Tibetan prayer flags and some of the most luscious flower gardens. There are picnic tables and a tire swing and a little toddler play cube--a sign at the entrance warms of children at play, and I mention how thrilling it is to see a place that welcomes the bustle of the little people.

This isn't to say I don't understand and respect the need for adult spaces (just as I understand and respect adult-free places for the children in turn). But the lovely folks who run Rush River are peaceful and willing to open up the field behind their house to families with littles and dogs and welcome us back again and again.

We brought home two pounds of blueberries, two onions, two pumpkin-squash, and this local honey. Which Finn has taken over as his own, and, as my sister has reminded me, will help him with allegories.

(Side note: the kids were playing in the backseat on the drive home, and Maya declared that hippos eat allergies [algae] and she called something a trance-elizer [tranquilizer]. There was lots of bird-play with Dad, which is a beloved activity of M's.)

There's a house in Maiden Rock that my husband really likes, and I admit, I love as well. But it's across the river, in a whole other state, and I've kind of fancied myself as finally feeling at home as a Minnesotan. So there's all kinds of internal sense-of-place stuff going on inside of me. One thing I know for certain: I would really love trees big and sturdy enough for tire swings.

And peaceful places, places of quiet. It wouldn't be so bad having this blueberry spot down the road, would it? Our future home is wide-open right now, and we're still at work getting this home ready for the market--I would say hard at work, but this summer's training program has swallowed my focus and energy. It seems strange to think that the start of the school year will be more relaxed for me, but it's true.

Until then, I have two pounds of blueberries to find a recipe for.

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