I have been updating http://www.jewelsoftheblueridge.blogspot.com/ to include some of my latest work--a stunning green turquoise necklace, a pearl necklace enhanced with a fine silver bead made by the extraordinarily talented Anne Choi, a sterling and turquoise pin. This is only a fraction of an inventory that must be photographed and catalogued. My conclusion is that self-employment is not for the faint of heart. The hours are long, OSHA is not on one's side, the boss is grumpy when work does not go well and the wages are terrible. The good thing is when you are doing work you love, it does feel like play most of the time. If you are lucky, what you do pleases others--forget about pleasing yourself--artisans are driven to do better and better. It is the nature of the beast.
I think I have driven myself sufficiently for today. It is time to make myself a nice cup of coffee--let it be freshly ground Mirembe Kawamera from http://www.thanksgivingcoffee.com/
--to go with a slice of pear pie there is no recipe. I just threw things together and hoped for the best. That is, I took a three very ripe pears, peeled, cored and sliced them. Then I cooked them in a syrup made with one and a half cups of Merlot wine, one cup of sugar, a dash of ground Vietnamese cinnamon. I cooked the pears until they were tender, strained them and reduced the syrup to one cup. After the pears and syrup cooled, I beat four eggs, mixed in a tin of sweetened condensed milk, added the wine syrup and mixed well, Next I added the pears and one and a half cups unsalted, raw cashews. In poured the mix into a handmade--please applaud--butter crust and baked it at 350F for 50 minutes. Yes, it is rich, yes, it is sweet, aren't we all? Join me in saying the benediction for delicious things. There is one, I am sure.