I’m sitting at my long narrow wooden kitchen table marveling out of the back patio window at three years worth thus far of trials and tribulations of gardening. The trumpet vine I planted in the corner of the porch is thriving now; I’ve carefully strung it along the porch roof. The delicate and heavenly scented flowers in hues of soft buttery yellow and smooth sorbet pink dangle from the vines in the rain inviting the red throated hummingbirds to come and drink its alluring nectar.
Polly is attempting to perch herself on my shoulder so she can get a good cheek rub from the plastic hair clip I’m wearing. She also keeps a sharp eye out at the same time for the little warbler that dashes back and forth from the woods to what must be a nest under the eaves of the back porch. There are so many birds nests tucked under the eaves of the farmhouse and all over the barn, I believe we’ve finally all come to live in harmony with one another.
Well, no, I take that back. We’re still working on a relationship with a pair of robins at the front porch. Patrick and I like to have our morning coffee when we return from Boston on our front porch. A pair of robins have their nest of baby birds tucked into a corner eave there. As soon as we get cozy in our rocking chairs, the robins begin their campaign to drive us back inside. One robin swoops as close as it dares to where we are sitting while the other makes alarming calls from the nearest tree branch. We can see the little baby bird heads poking just a fraction above the nest…frozen as if by command from their parents. For 3 weekends now, we move our chairs away from them more and more until we feel like intruders on our own property and eye them with a big of fear and panic. Last week our rocking chairs were pooped all over. Wonder by whom? After hosing down the chairs, we finally scooted over enough to make them happy and so now we can have our coffee in relative peace as they resume their worm delivery to the baby chicks who instantly come to life and squeal loudly stretching their baby beaks impossibly wide. We don’t want to miss the show as we sip on our brew, but good golly, we understand who is boss around here.
I’ve returned in the middle of a downpour from the wet, shiny, noisy streets of Boston to the green country roads that wind up and over the hills of New Hampshire and bring us to our beloved farmhouse. My head swirls at the contrast between these two lifestyles we’ve been living for the last 2 months now as I hang a load of clothes on the outdoor line to dry. Everything here in New Hampshire is beautifully still…wonderfully still. The air is thick with moisture from the woods and scented by little jewels like my trumpet vine flowers, soft dainty glowing astilbe, overflowing herb garden, and clusters of royal purple meadow sage.
We are growing to love Boston and are relishing the opportunity to get to know this grand dame of a historical city. When we return to the woods of New Hampshire we squeeze every second out of country living. Twice now we’ve stayed in the Fenway neighborhood using the wonderfully styled furnished apartments offered by the company, Sonder Boston. Fenway is so lively and fun. We knew nothing about the neighborhood except for the existence of Fenway stadium. Exploring the baseball section of the neighborhood is much less touristy than I thought it would be. The neighborhoods surrounding the stadium are stocked with really good restaurants, fun and trendy shops, and tree lined cinnamon colored brownstones. Students with their backpacks roam the area going to and from their apartments because the Fenway area is ringed by colleges and universities. There is a beautiful winding park called the Emerald Necklace that is filled with community gardens, duck filled ponds, and cherry blossom trees. Tucked in between all of this are two important museums to Boston, the Isabella Gardner Museum as well as The Museum of Fine Arts. Restaurants of all ethnicities can be found here and our favorites were Japanese at Sushi Kappo , Mexican at El Pelon Taqueriea, and fusion pizza at Tapestry. I’ve listed everything at the bottom of the post if anyone wants a few places to try out that we really enjoyed. If you go to Fenway, try out the donuts at Blackbird Donuts. The display of donuts isn’t that impressive. I almost passed on trying them because I wasn’t wow’d by the set up. But, then I sampled one…and then another on the next week …they are worth it. Blackbird keeps their donuts simple…but very delicious.
Oh, and I should mention our continued enjoyment of fresh foods delivered to our farmhouse from the Concord company Local Baskit. The recipe I featured here is a wonderfully healthy dish called Crispy Bacon wrapped Halloumi on a bed of spring greens.
I’ve transplanted dozens of irises that I’ve found all over the property into the garden beds. Very happily I can report that they call seemed to survive and bloomed beautifully.
Transplanted about 20 columbine plants and happy to see that they are also thriving and spreading quickly.
Coming home from Boston on some back roads and came across this big red beauty.
The cherry blossoms that ring The Emerald Necklace Park in the Fenway neighborhood are not to be missed…you can see them blooming in late May/Early June.
The Emerald Necklace walking trail meanders all through the park and is just lovely with its community gardens thriving in pockets all over the park.
Blackbird Donuts in Fenway neighborhood. We’re sold. This one was a pomegranate glaze over a vanilla cake donut.
Looking for macarons in Boston? Café Nero Coffee shop has a nice selection
This Sonder apartment was gorgeous. It was on the 21rst floor and the views of Boston were spectacular.
Favorites List of Boston’s Fenway Neighborhood:
Local Baskit Meal Delivery service
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 TBS red wine vinegar
- frozen or fresh peas
- handful of scallions
- pea shoots or microgreens
- 1 package bacon (keep what not used for breakfast)
- 1 packages of Halloumi cheese
- Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Place the frozen peas in a colander and pour the boiling water over. Let drain. Rinse and trim the spring onions and thinly slice the white and green parts. Rinse the micro greens and pat dry.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the Dijon mustard and red wine vinegar. Add 1½ TBS olive oil and whisk to combine, seasoning with salt and pepper. Add the peas and sliced spring onions and toss to combine.
- Cut the Halloumi into 8 slices. Gently stretch the bacon to make it a bit thinner. Wrap a slice of bacon around each slice of cheese. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Fry the bacon-wrapped Halloumi, turning several times until the cheese is beginning to brown and the bacon is crisp. Remove to a paper towel lined plate.
- Add the micro greens to the pea salad and toss gently. To serve, divide the salad between the serving plates and top with the bacon-wrapped Halloumi cheese.