Watermelon Skies

I've lost 7 pounds in the last 2 weeks without even trying. Go ahead, ask me. What's my secret?

Moving and building a new plot.

Carrying box after box, piece of furniture after other piece of furniture, and rearranging everything at least 5 times in the new place is a great workout. But even more work is tearing a plot out of the dead grass and hardpan. After cutting up the soil in a 15 foot square, I'm getting pretty good at wielding a pickax. Too bad my more tender sentiments won't let me apply those pickax skills to the gophers that are the cause of so much work. This area, on the edge of wildlands, is riddled with gophers, and this little ranchito of ours is no exception. So, I'm cutting out the dead sod, shoveling up tons of soil, laying down mesh wire to keep the buggers from the roots of my babies, and shoveling the soil with added compost back over the wire. All this for just a little plot in which to start my garden: I've got almost a quarter acre left to figure out how to protect!

I'm sore and exhausted, but you won't catch me complaining, for most of the time nowadays, I'm just grinning. I have space that is mine to plant. I have skies to grow under. I have room in which to dream.

Every day at work, I look forward to being able to come home—not because I don't like my job for (as you know) I do really, really love my job—but because I am so excited about this new home and all my free mental space goes towards putting it together. Today seemed particularly long, partly because I don't feel very well and partly because the weekend is so close; so, when I did get to come home, imagine my delight when I saw my husband out in the yard, sweating away in the 98 degree heat, pulling out an evil, poisonous oleander unfortunately growing smack-dab-in-the-middle of prime garden space.

As much as ECG likes the fact that I garden and am working more and more towards self-sufficiency, in general, the garden is not a place that draws him the way it does me. For him to choose to sweat the oleander out of her hole in this heat is further proof of his overall amazing awesomeness, as if I did not have enough evidence. This man deserved something refreshing, cold, and worthy of the occasion, so fresh squozen Watermelon Limeade it was.

I have no real recipe for this, but quickly I'll tell you how to make an overheated homo sapien happy after unpleasant manual labor. Chop up half a small watermelon into large chunks, and using your hands, squeeze the fruit over a strainer over a bowl. You will get juice on the kitchen counter, but deal with it, because the overheated homo sapien is much more important than a few spatters. With either your hands or a juicer, squeeze the juice of 4 limes and pour the lime juice in the bowl with the watermelon juice. Add simple syrup (if you haven't begun before this, now is a good time to begin keeping a jar of simple syrup—one part water to one part sugar, heated until dissolved and then cooled—in the refrigerator at all times) to taste, stir, and pour into a big glass you've kept in the freezer until just this occasion.

Pour yourself a glass too, and look up: isn't it just beautiful?


Anonymous said…
I made something similar this summer, with mint and vodka. So refreshing, wonderful after a hard day at work!
Cafe Observer said…
Njoy your blog & recipes. Wish I had time to cook.

Enjoy this time of refreshment & renewal for you.
Anonymous said…
Yum. YUM. That looks delicious, and yes -- keeping some simple syrup in the fridge at all times, I'm finding, is definitely a good thing to do.
Anonymous said…
Watermelon juice sounds wonderful! :)
Anonymous said…
Congratulations on your new home. You're right, it's easy to lose weight when you work so hard and are so busy. Nice blog.~~Dee
Christina said…
Gudrun: That sounds wonderful! What a great variation on a theme.

From da cafe: Thank you for the well-wishes and compliments. I hope you get the cooking-time you wish for.

Genie: Thanks! Now that I've gotten in the habit of having simple syrup on hand, I don't think I can turn back.

Maryann: It is wonderful. Give it a try!

Dee: Thanks for the compliments. Welcome to A Thinking Stomach!
Anonymous said…
I am so jealous! Even though I've been sweating it out in the yard trying to get my garden up and running, too, I've managed to put on a few pounds rather than shedding them. Maybe that's because I'm basically depressed when I'm not in the country, so I eat. Yay eating! Just kidding, I'm not that much of a crazy lady, but I do love being all sore from our work on Mondays. Yesterday we raked and moved tons and tons of leaves to pile on top of damp newspaper in an attempt to kill some of the grass so I can start a new garden that's all my own next spring. I can't wait!
Wendy said…
Oh, I remember that feeling of "I can't wait to get back to my house!" so well! It was wonderful but it consumed me.

Gorgeous recipe. Sounds a perfect antidote to the aches and pains of toiling in the soil.
Pastry Angie said…
I just found your blog for the first time. Congratulations on your new home. What a joy to have a yard to create a garden. Dream Big! Lots of luck and lady bugs!
I have to admit, Christina, I've read alcoholic reasons for making and keeping simple syrup around that are perhaps a tad more compelling to me. But that could just be my liver talking. I love how wonderfully happy this post sounds, my friend. And ECG's willingness to tackle the oleander speaks not only to his overall amazing awesomeness, but to yours as well. He wouldn't do that for just anyone, you know.
Anonymous said…
The last little watermelon from our garden is cooling in the fridge. Now I know just what to do with it. I may even follow Gudrun's advice and throw in a little mint and vodka.

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