Sunday, April 15, 2012

Just Dandy

The boys bent, smiling. They picked the golden flowers, the flowers that flooded the world, dripped off lawns onto brick streets, tapped softly at crystal cellar windows and agitated themselves so that on all sides lay the dazzle and the glitter of molten sun.

"Every year," said grandfather, "they run amuck; I let them. Pride of lions in the yard. Stare, and they burn a hole in your retina. A common flower, a weed that no one sees, yes. But for us, a noble thing, the dandelion."

Ray Bradbury, Dandelion Wine



Dandelion Wine - one of my favorite books, . We tried to make dandelion wine once. A homeschool science project. Epic fail. Which I guess worked out in our favor, as I don't see how well winemaking would have looked in a homeschooling portfolio--heh, heh. But never mind that. Today I'm working on some dandelion syrup.


And speaking of books and dandelions, I just finished reading The Hunger Games trilogy at my daughter's request. Three books in three and a half days. I couldn't put them down. Had a headache when I was done. Plus, I felt a strong urge to arm myself, and to learn to make food out of weeds.


I first read about dandelion syrup on my friend Julie's blog at One Penny Jumble Packet.


Julie used to live in my district, uh, I mean, my neighborhood. She was fun to hang out with, and she has some mad skills. You would definitely want Julie as an ally in the arena.


She moved (drat it), and I miss her.


So anyways, after spending my weekend reading an inner-turmoil-inducing but still good trilogy, I decided to calm myself with the making of said syrup.


"To this day, I can never shake the connection between this boy, Peeta, Mellark, and the bread that gave me hope, and the dandelion that reminded me that I was not doomed." Katniss, in The Hunger Games


That sounds good - bread that gives you hope. May dandelions be ever on your lawn.

26 comments:

Val + the Girls- BK +CK said...

My daughter's been talking about that book...better give it a read (I'm guessing that at 9 it's far too old content wise..but I haven't read it so better find out)
Love the dandelion syrup ..I almost made the wine once but made rhubarb instead ...very yummy if a bit like vodka!

vicki said...

it certainly looks yummy, sweetheart! so, i just read the hunger games also, finished yesterday. but, we saw the movie friday night before i was finished with the book, and i must say, i was a nervous wreck during the movie because i didn't know what happened. i'm looking forward to the next two books!

Kit said...

Love this, Jodi! You are funny. I loved The Hunger Games, and just saw the movie last week. My 7th and 8th graders mostly loved the books, but a few have no interest in reading them.
What will you do with the syrup? My mom used to make prickly pear syrup...you know, in the desert.

amy said...

oh i love it jodi! all of this. i read the entire series in a few days too... when you finish it's kind of like coming out of a daze, wondering, what do i do now?

now you've made me want to pull out my copy of dandelion wine again though. i just might.

love you.

Ostriches Look Funny said...

I love love love ray but I haven't read hunger games yet. I have the first one waiting on my kindle but i"m not ready for it. I think I'll read cutting for stone first.

So how does the syrup taste?

Emily said...

My new favorite post!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1. Now that you've finished the trilogy, we have to discuss in detail. Who were your favorites? Still Haymitch? What did you think about what happened to *ahem* that one character towards the end of book 3?

2. I just love all your dandelion allusions.

3. It's good to have friends you know you could make alliances with in the arena :)

Jodi said...

Val, do give it a read, especially if your daughter is considering it. Leads to some great discussions, I think. Rhubarb wine? That sounds intriguing. Speaking of vodka, I heard you need that to make a good lemoncello, which I'd like to try to do someday.

Jodi said...

Vicki, ha ha, sweetheart, nice touch. If you think you're a nervous wreck now, just wait until you read books 2 and 3. Good heavens.

Jodi said...

Kit, ha ha, thanks. When I was young, I saw someone make prickly pear syrup on a show called Zoom. Or maybe it was Sesame Street, I'm not sure. Anyway, it looked interesting. You can mix dandelion syrup with mineral water and drink it, or put it on pancakes. I might try both.

Jodi said...

Amy, I agree 100%. I felt like I was in a daze. I took refuge in reading my Bible and cookbooks :)
Love you, too.

Jodi said...

JoAnn, Cutting for Stone--I'll have to look that one up. I borrowed my daughter's kindle to read the Hunger Games. I'd never thought I'd admit this. But kindles are awesome! The syrup tastes good, which surprised me.

Jodi said...

Emily, #1a--still Haymitch. I get him. The whole blocking the pain thing. The book hurt so much I had to keep telling myself "This is fiction - stop caring about the characters. You'll be okay, sweetheart". #1b--I was very disappointed about the character at the end of book 3. Not fair! #3--I definitely would make alliances with you and your mom. ;)

Quotidian Life said...

I'm one and a half books into the trilogy, Jodi, and I enjoyed all the connections you made. I read the first book nearly straight through but I'm getting bogged down in #2. Just not the same intrigue and I'm dragging my feet getting back into the arena. I'd love to try the Dandelion syrup.

Julie @ OnePennyJumblePacket said...

Thanks for the compliment and the link. If you ever have to enter an arena and fight to the death, I've got your back!

BTW, I love Ray Bradbury, but I've never read Dandelion Wine -- Thanks for giving me something to read!

And I miss you lots and lots, too. xoxo

Leslie said...

i love this post! SOOOOOO much! it makes me happy :)

Nancy said...

I'm a huge fan of prickly pear syrup--it makes some seriously happening pink margaritas (which, no, my kids and I did not make as home school projects)

This post was entirely too much fun. I haven't read books 2 and 3 yet, so I've got some catching up to do.

Love the hat tip to grace in your final sentence. Pure beauty.

Connie Smiley said...

Love the way you write, Jodi! A fine tribute to that humble beauty.

Janie Fox said...

I haven't read the books either and my daughter has been raving how good they were. I can't care. Cutting for Stone to JoAnn...yuk I didn't like it. I have dandelions and ants. What is your suggestion for them??

Linda said...

What a wonderful combination--my daughter has also told me to read Hunger Games, but it takes you, Jodi, to make dandelion syrup inspired by it! I once tried to harvest the dandelions but they were so dirty I gave up trying to get the grit out. How do you manage that or is there a good way to harvest that leaves a lot of the dirt behind?

Jodi said...

Leslie, Nancy, and Connie - thank you, thank you, thank you xxx

Jodi said...

Janie, I still love you even though you insulted mine and JoAnn's reading choices (jokes). I despise ants, although I'm sure they have some purpose. Keep the dandelions. Rinse and repeat.

Jodi said...

Linda, I have seen dirty dandelions :) Fortunately, we seem to be growing a crop of big, fluffy ones in our backyard this year. You just pick the flower heads and tear the petals from the little green cup thingy that holds them (technical I know--some botanist somewhere is outraged, I'm sure). They didn't appear to have any grit. I wonder if there are different types of dandelions?

Leslie said...

in answer to your question about the bird in my last post - yes. it was a white dove. they always make me think of the Spirit of God.

Jennifer said...

My girl has been wanting to read Hunger Games, too. Guess I better get to it and get them read myself. I know they will be good; we read another series by Suzanne Collins and loved it. Happy dandelions; I love them, too (I have a yard full of them :) And your Zoom reference made me smile! I tried to tell my kids about Zoom because I loved it when I was their age but I could tell by their expressions they thought it sounded lame!

Laura said...

Jodi, that syrup picture is making my mouth water. I just finished reading the Hunger Games books with my youngest son and we devoured them like you. Only its slower in the read aloud. And he wouldn't let me read without him (though I did cheat a couple times, but don't tell him). Sigh. Feeling that let down after a good engaging read. Maybe I'll have to pick some dandelions and try your recipe.

Cheryl said...

We have lots of dandelions. The bumble bees are all over them. I'm very tempted to elbow them out of the way and grab some to make the syrup. Its OK. There are plenty of flowers to go around.

I nearly picked up a copy of the Hunger Games. Still umming and ahhing. I do rather stock pile and raise the draw bridge after reading books like that. Can my family cope!

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