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Lake Lure Morning & Pumpkin Oatmeal

September 27, 2011

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(Photo taken on our last day when the sun finally broke through)

Staying at the Lake Lure Inn, established in 1927, whose most recent fame is that it was the location for filming Dirty Dancing, which, Shea, our server in the dining room told us may be remade by a group from Nashville who just left after researching the possibilities. Gee, I hope not.

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First day, very early morning:
Quiet…except for the geese we are disturbing. It’s still…no breeze, no wind.
I smell fox, a slightly lighter acrid smell than a skunk.

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Walking around the lake – no lake stench. Aha, “Do not feed the ducks or geese by city ordinance…”

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Enter the small park on the far side of the lake, well landscaped, well watered by the abundant rain in this area year round. I smell sandalwood.

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A willow that DH says would be a great place to drop a fly or a lure if he were fishing.

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The gazebo, which is visible from the other side of the lake, didn’t appear to be as large as it is.

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Great ceiling. I especially like the Barn Swallow nest.
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Continue the walk around this finger of the lake. Fog has obscured the other end. Then I notice the sound, like a small child stepping in water.

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Mallard ducks are “mudding” with their beaks in the standing water from last night’s rain searching for a breakfast morsel.

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Still listening to the ducks I stop – Muscadines! I smell them but don’t see them! We search but don’t want to disturb the ducks, so continue on.

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From the path I see what appears to be berries, orange & yellow. Native Butterfly Bushes, Goldenrod & I hear hummingbirds. Off the path I go to find Bittersweet still blooming, just a few berries set. The hummingbirds are weaving in & out of the whole conglomeration of plants, squeaking, bumping into each other & feeding.

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I love how the plants, trees, hills & mountains are reflected in the water. I love how the clouds hang on the hills, not quite up in the sky.

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Circling back to leave the small park I smell dill, but not regular, herby, cooking dill, more of a woody, wet dill-ish scent from I don’t know where.

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When the small, diving ducks fly by it’s almost like giant hummingbirds – a light whirring sound. But the geese – no, it’s like an invasion from the air. Like many helicopters are coming in force.
Geese have moved around the lake, some in the water, some on the bank, some too close to the road. Not liking our approach they spread their massive wings & lift off the ground before & behind us, barely clearing the boardwalk which we tread, to land in the water. The sound of the wings – loud movement of a lot of air. The power to be able to lift this bottom-heavy bird off the ground from a standing start – wow!

Pie pumpkin

Pumpkin Oatmeal

Giant pumpkins are in every roadside vegetable stand now. Stop & pick out a nice pie pumpkin to make your own fresh pumpkin puree for pies, cakes, smoothies & this oatmeal! Save the seeds, roast them & use them, too!

Makes 2 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Steel-cut Oats (or 1 cup Old Fashioned Oats)
  • 2 cups Water
  • 1/4 cup Pumpkin (use canned or fresh)
  • 2 Tablespoons Golden Flax Seeds
  • 1/4 cup Raisins
  • 1/4 cup Dried Cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped Pecans
  • 1/2 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice (or to taste)
  • Dash of Sea Salt
  • Pumpkin Seeds for topping

Instructions:

  1. Place all ingredients, except pumpkin seeds, in a medium sauce pot over medium high heat & bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce heat & simmer, stirring occasionally, until oats are done: about 20 minutes for steel-cut oats and around 5 for old fashioned.
  3. Top with pumpkin seeds & serve with milk, if desired.

The combination of the pumpkin & dried fruits makes it sweet enough that you don’t really need to add a sweetener, but if you’d like, try adding some maple syrup as an all-natural sweetener.

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One Comment
  1. Betty permalink
    September 27, 2011 7:25 am

    Beautiful! And the oatmeal sounds wonderful!

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