Well, hello Spring! What took you so long?!
Mother Nature has finally caught up with us around here. It's almost the end of April and I can confidently say we are out of the woods (the winter woods!). The air is changing and flowers are popping up all over the place. We had a few days last week where we were actually able to open the windows for a bit and let in the fresh air. It's been niiiiice!
And whenever that first burst of Spring hits me I always tend to want to bake something with fruit. So I did. Strawberry pineapple cobbler. Totally yummy and a lovely welcome to Spring!
Last Monday was when Spring fever hit me hard. I had the day off from work so I decided to take full advantage of the great weather. The winter really did a number on me this year. I felt "down" more than usual and very unmotivated. All the snow and darkness was very depressing. It seemed to go on forever. I teetered between not being able to sleep at all to being tied all the time. I've never experienced that before. Once the days started getting longer I started to feel better. The faster the snow melted, the more my motivation came back. Now that it's Spring, I'm not as tired, and suddenly have a surge of energy. New ideas, recipes, projects. I feel so much better ♥
I was determined to spend some time outdoors and I found just the place. This bench had my name written all over it. Monday is the only day of the week that is solely mine. I work the rest of the week but Mondays are for me. Yes, I do errands and chores around the house, but I try to take a tiny bit of time and do something special for myself. Sometimes I meet a friend for breakfast, or go for a bike ride. This day all I wanted to do was sit outside.
One BLT and iced latte to go...
The bench faced the ocean and was under a tree. It doesn't get any better than this.
All I needed was a half hour. I ate my lunch, watched the waves, and then took a walk on the beach. It was a bit windy, but I didn't care. There were dog walkers, skateboarders, and some people just sitting in their car drinking coffee. I'm sure we were all thinking the same thing...."Spring Glorious Spring!". Within a few weeks all these trees will have flowers on them (I saw the buds). I will be back to my bench very soon to enjoy them!
It's really amazing what a little sunshine and fresh air can do for your mood. I felt so good after that. Back home to do housework and then 3:00 pick up at school. Back to work on Tuesday. My half hour time out set the tone for the rest of my week. I was productive and happy. I also slept like a baby that night which is priceless : )
I thought you all might like this recipe for strawberry pineapple cobbler. I made if for the first time on Sunday and brought it to my parent's house for dessert. It was a hit all around. The light flavors of the new season are spot on!
recipe adapted from Sumptuous Spoonfuls
3 cups fresh strawberries, diced
1 can pineapple chunks (20 oz.), drained
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 stick butter, melted
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 9 inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
Toss the diced strawberries with 1/4 cup sugar, vanilla, and lemon juice. Set aside.
In a small mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and 1/4 cup sugar. Stir in the milk, vanilla, and melted butter until just mixed. Your batter will have lumps and that's OK.
Pour into the prepared baking dish. Gently spoon the strawberries on top of the batter (with all the juice). Then drop in the pineapples.
Bake at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until the cobbler is golden brown on the edges. A knife in the center should come out completely clean.
The best part about this dessert is that it can be eaten warm, room temperature, or cold.
We had ours warm, topped with whipped topping.
Ice cream would have been delicious too!
I had leftovers the next day....cold...right out of the fridge! So good!
If you like this recipe, here are a few other strawberry favorites I have made:
I have left over strawberries and I am making the strawberry French toast this weekend : )
I hung my Spring garden flag which is another sign that we are in the clear. A month ago this entire flag pole was buried in a snow bank. I'm so glad it survived! The next step will be planting flowers, but I don't think we are quite ready yet. I won't push my luck : )
I hope the sun is shining on you today and you take some time to treat yourself to something special