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Our Independence Day weekend was just plain awesome. We spent the 4th with some great people and tons of great food (we contributed Hawaiian Pulled Pork with fresh Mango Salsa–recipe to come–and Honey Roasted Butternut Squash. Odd choice I know, but it’s my friend’s favorite!). The weather was perfect, not too hot, but warm enough to feel like summer, and the post put on a great fireworks display. Our group found a great spot on a hill far away from the crazies where the kids could play/enjoy/sleep/keep their hearing. Chicken Little even enjoyed his very first fireworks show (until he decided he was over it and wanted to eat and sleep.right.then. Totally normal).

The smile he gives when I make him take 80bajillion pictures...

The smile he gives when I make him take 80bajillion pictures…

What was probably a really good picture, but I forgot to put my camera back on auto-focus. Doh.

What was probably a really good picture, but I forgot to put my camera back on auto-focus. Doh.

Love love love this kid.

Love love love this kid.

So sweet.

So sweet.

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Friday (which was also one year after we found out our sweet baby was/is a boy), we got up early, packed up the Jeep, and hit the road. Destination: the University of Missouri. The boys spent many many many hours putzing around campus while I took the GRE. It was a last minute decision to take the exam, but I got the score I needed to apply for graduate school!!

We spent Saturday and Sunday morning at the DZ, and that place really is a second home to us already. I started the process to get current again, and I should be back at it within a month. Woohoo!!

Anyways, tonight P and I made more jam/fruit butter. I’d originally planned to make another batch of Berry Rhubarb, but I got a sudden inspiration to do something a little different. I mixed honey, fresh lavender, and strawberries, and the result is truly amazing. It’s the perfect combination of fruity and floral, and it’s not too sweet at all. It’s even paleo friendly 😉

Strawberry Lavender Butter
makes 1/2 pint

3C strawberries, sliced (1lb)
1C raw honey
6 sprigs of lavender, stripped off the stem

Combine in a bowl.
Cover.
Let sit for at least an hour while the juice flow and mix.
Simmer in a 12″ pan over medium to low heat for 15-30 minutes.

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Stir frequently (you don’t want it to burn!!).
Once the butter is the right consistency (check with the freezer jam test. The surface should wrinkled when touched after cooling), I used my immersion blender to get it nice and smooth and really blend the flavors together.
Pour into jar.
It will keep about a month in the fridge, or a year if properly sealed and stored in a cool dark place.

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P was in dire need of sleep, so we didn’t get to cook this one, but this bad boy is sitting on our counter getting juicy for us to make tomorrow: Blueberry Peach Rhubarb Jam!!

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I can’t wait to try it!

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