Summer Days, Trips and Food

I haven’t been blog­ging much late­ly, par­tial­ly because I am still some­what busy with work, and also because those times when I’m not busy, I’m usu­al­ly tak­ing it easy. The weath­er has been so warm and sun­ny, and this time of year the sun sets so late (usu­al­ly around 9:20 PM) that we are tak­ing some walks after din­ner, part­ly for weight con­trol, part­ly because it’s just too good to miss the sun­sets and light on the water.

With the good weath­er have come some trips that were a photographer’s hol­i­day, notably one where we met my broth­er and his fam­i­ly at the tail end of Skag­it Tulip Fes­ti­val:

Skagit Tulips - 30

Skagit Tulips - 50

Skagit Tulips - 58

We also had a nice walk through the Rieger Bird Sanc­tu­ary on West­ham Island (where we intend to go to pick berries in a cou­ple of weeks):

Feeding a Chickadee

Duck Swimming in Dappled Sunshine

Final­ly, we took a cou­ple of walks through Stan­ley Park and Pacif­ic Spir­it Park:

Near the Pavilion

Beaver Pond - 5

Beaver Pond Lilies - 6

Pam on Spirit Park Trail

Mushrooms in Spirit Park

As you might expect, with the laid-back weath­er and walks have come the sum­mer fruits and veg­eta­bles. It’s been a great year for aspara­gus, and we heard that the straw­ber­ry har­vest, due to the dry, warm spell, is excel­lent. The apri­cots (both orange and pur­ple), sweet Donut Peach­es (sor­ry, Mom and Dad, this time they were per­fect — not like the ones you had), and Dinosaur egg plums are all appear­ing in the mar­ket, and today we saw the first of what we hope will be bushels of blue­ber­ries. Tonight, we decid­ed to fol­low the cue of Edi­ble Van­cou­ver mag­a­zine and make this superb appe­tiz­er, Stuffed Apri­cots:

Stuffed Apricots

10 small, per­fect­ly ripe apri­cots
2 oz.(55g) blue brie or oth­er mild blue cheese
4 oz. (115g) cream cheese
10 small leaves fresh basil
20–40 pine nuts, toast­ed

Halve apri­cots and remove pits. Mix cheeses togeth­er until well blend­ed. Fill each apri­cot half with cheese and gar­nish with one basil leaf and one or two pine nuts.

Here’s what it ends up look­ing like:

Stuffed Apricots

Thanks again, Dad, for the cam­era.