Of course, the weekend started the requisite Saturday morning visit to our Uptown Farmers Market - there were literally hordes of people enjoying the weather and filling the stalls.
One of the greatest things about the cooler weather is that the freak show of flesh normally on display at the market is becoming increasingly covered and less visible. Mind you - there's still plenty of freakishness on display, but not so many 400 lb people wearing crop tees with hairy bellies hanging out or going bra-less.
Cycling shorts worn without undergarments by non-cycling types are too, thankfully, on the decline.
So, of course, I occupied my usual position at the very social HUB of the market - Lesleigh and Danny's booth.
The Just Like Mother Used to Bake booth is the social, political, psychological and emotional heart of the market. If you want good, old fashioned desserts made with real, quality ingredients - served up with a side of social justice and a pinch of reality-based indignation, this is the place to be.
But it's the desserts that keep 'em coming back. This weekend a new fan was born after discovering that Lesleigh understood the importance of balancing great cake with just the right amount of frosting vs. slapping 50 lbs of frosting on substandard fare. She'll be back!
After the market, we retired to our front porch for cocktails and conversation - where Lesleigh digitally captured this little slice of 'Americana' from her seat near the railing. It evokes a number of elements - the dappled shade of the ancient trees, the Colonial charm of the architecture, and the balmy breeziness of a lazy Saturday afternoon.
And more importantly, it captures the fact that the City Public Works Department, when they replaced the street signs that were stolen by some high-spirited teen-agers last year, mispelled the street name 'Merilina.'
Brian and AerialPJ joined us later in the day after a psychotic day of setting up four weddings across the river. Many things had gone askew - but nerves were quickly balmed with lashings of champagne and vodka-tonics.
I then whipped up a flavorful chicken and potato soup, and accompanied it with a salad of romaine leaves, Parmesan and a balsamic vinaigrette. Served with candle light, sparkling conversation and second helpings all-round, we concluded with coffee and one of Lesleigh's fresh fruit tarts with a cream-cheese base.
Sunday morning was an experiment from my new Nigella Lawson cookbook- a baked Croque Monsieur casserole for breakfast.
The rest of the day was spent enjoying the weather and working in the garden for Brian and cleaning up and cooking even more (!) for moi.
I'm a sucker for cooking when the weather starts to cool down. So I whipped up a killer beef brisket, slow cooked over four hours, alongside some incredible local fingerling potatoes, and accompanied by fresh ears of sweet corn, purchased the day before.
But I did spend some time outside - it would have been criminal not to soak up some of the late summer/early Fal ll weather.
Although overgrown with weeds, the garden is still quite beautiful this time of year (click to enlarge-ez-vous):
The September Flower is in full bloom and covered with busy honey bees...
The Japanese Anenome is a dazzling profusion of lavender pink and yellow...
The cheese pumpkins are ripening in readiness for this winter's pies and possibly a Christmas pudding...
Goose neck gourds will provide decoration throughout the fall season...
...and five of these Butternut beauties will ensure a winter full of hearty soups and stews.
It's a shame that weekends only last two days...this was one that could have lasted forever.
Here's hoping that your weekend was as lovely and as much fun. Cheers!