Hi Everyone! It's June! ♥ The heat is OFF and will stay off until October!
It's been so warm that we are sleeping with the windows open, which means that summer is on her way. She's not here yet, but everyone has "that feeling" going on. School is out in less than two weeks, which makes for a super excited first grader/soon to be second grader in the house! I can remember "that feeling" from when I was a kid. Aside from Christmas, nothing beats summer vacation! Am I right?!
I just made a batch of these yummy strawberry rhubarb bars that I can't wait to share with you. But first I thought I would take you on a little tour of my yard and show you where I've been hiding this Spring....
This past weekend I planted impatiens in my flower boxes. Over the years I've tried several types of flowers in these boxes and I always have the best luck with inpatients. As long as I keep them watered they grown tall and full!
It's been so nice to finally be outside! The grass has somehow come back to life after the harsh winter. I knew it was there somewhere!
♥ I love this pretty pink azalea bush ♥
This picture reminded me how back in February the snow was so high it covered the top of my mailbox! Craaaaazy!
All of the plants and bushes are happy to be here! They seem to be smiling up to the sun, don't they?! I see little buds on the hydrangea's and that makes me soooo happy!!!!
We spend most of our time in the backyard. Come take a peek...
Through the rusty gate....
Along the fence we have rose bushes. The white one is my favorite. It's a bit too soon for them to bloom, but I'll be checking daily. That long rectangle you see is a boccie court. We have lots of fun playing this game in the summer! Do you play? We've had some battles, let me tell you! ♥
Of course there's the swing set. John is very proud of himself because he FINALLY learned how to pump on his own! We don't have to push him anymore! Yay! He loves it out here : ) After dinner we sit on the swings and eat popsicles. He takes all the orange ones!
Up the steps to the deck you will find....
...my favorite seat! My chair is the one on the left. This is where I drink my coffee, read, relax, and bird watch. I can see the whole yard from up here. I just love it.
Believe it or not, sometimes the three of us crowd around this little table and eat dinner! I suppose we really should get a bigger one but I don't want to. I love this one! We have a lot of laughs at dinner about how smushed we are. Good memories! ♥
I keep the deck pretty with flowers. Nothing fancy, just little touches that bring color.
We put two of these gorgeous hanging geraniums up too. I enjoy watering them everyday.
I also have two big green planters that I have herbs growing in - basil, chives, parsley, and mint. This year we planted strawberry plants and look what I found the other day! I have berries! So excited! They are tiny now, but as soon as they are red and fat they are mine!!! ♥
So that's where I've been hiding out lately and enjoying every minute of Spring! The best part about living in New England is that the weather is always changing so there is always something to look forward to. Before we know it, it will be very hot & humid and my floors will be gritty with sand from the beach.
For now I am basking in these gentle, warm, lovely, days of Spring. ♥
Now, on to the good stuff..... Strawberry Rhubarb Bars! I saw this recipe in Better Homes and Gardens Magazine. I've never made anything other than a pie with rhubarb and I thought bars would be a nice alternative. Turns out these bars taste exactly like strawberry-rhubarb pie! I even think you could fill a pie shell with the filling and bake it as a pie! They are very tasty and go perfectly with Spring! My lesson learned here is - not to quit a good thing! Noted.
Here's what you need:
1 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
1 cup flour
3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter (12 tablespoons)
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup chopped, fresh rhubarb
2 cups chopped, fresh strawberries
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line an 8x8 baking dish with foil, allowing the foil to extend over the edges of the pan. Coat foil with nonstick cooking spray.
In a bowl, stir oats, flour, and 3/4 cup sugar.
Using a pastry blender ( I used a fork : ) cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Use fingers if necessary to break up the butter. Remove 1 - 1/2 cups of oat mixture and set aside.
Press remaining oat mixture evenly into the bottom of the pan. Bake 20 minutes.
Rhubarb time! To make the filling wash and chop up your rhubarb. Your fingers will turn pink, but don't worry it washes off ♥
In a medium saucepan combine rhubarb, 1/3 cup sugar, water, and 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger. Cook and stir over medium heat for 8 - 10 minutes until filling is thick and bubbly.
Stir in 2 cups of chopped strawberries.
Cook and stir for 3 - 5 more minutes until all the fruit is combined.
Spoon over hot crust....
...and spread evenly.
Top with reserved oat mixture.
Bake 30 -35 minutes until top is golden and the filling is bubbly. Set pan on a wire rack and cool completely.
Once cooled, lift from pan using foil. Carefully pull foil away from sides. This make cutting so much easier!
Using a serrated knife, cute into bars.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 - 4 days.
Top with whip cream or served with ice cream on the side would be delightful.
Me, I just ate them up one by one. No fork needed!
Happy June!!! xo