Before I moved to the country, no one ever warned me of the "critters." I could just say insects but then I would miss the "varmint". Critters seems to encompass them all. No matter what we do, we find mice in our house from time-to-time, ticks on our legs, mosquito bites on our arms and blasted groundhogs eating our perfectly un-manicured garden. To all of these I shake my fists and then let them go being there crittery little selves. I have never seen so many spiders, ticks and other creepy crawlies until I moved to the Shenandoah Valley. NEVER. No amounts of camping could have prepared me for weekly tick removals and spiders living in cracks in the wall. But I have come to accept these things, and they don't bother me as much now as they did before.
Bugs, crawlies and varmint are one of the unromantic realities that I have come to accept. The romance however lies in the pristine beauty of nature. The rolling mountains, the winding rivers and creeks, the cows in the pastures, the farmers on their tractors, abandoned barns in overgrown fields of wheat. *sigh* I am lost in beauty nearly everyday. And I love it!
Anastasia and I were out tending the garden the other day and found the wild blackberries that surround our yard were in season, so we picked a bunch, made some blackberry corn muffins, and just ate them straight. They were that perfect balance of sweet and tart. Anastasia ate hundreds of them on her own. They were that good. And we went to a local farm and picked some of these:
So I finally baked one of these:
*Edit: I did edit this post after I felt that classifying people as rednecks, etc might not be very kind because I absolutely love some of my country-folk neighbors/friends/family etc. So if you noticed my post completely changed, that is why. Nick also told me varmin should be varmint. oops. This is why I married an editor.... or one of the benefits of marrying the love of my life who also happens to be an editor.*