I'm not very good with birthdays. Last year, on Murdo's 30th , I brought him Indian food on my way home from work. And that was it. His birthday was so uneventful that year, in fact, that later he confessed he was almost sure the lack of celebration meant that something big had to happen by the end of the night. Oh, Murdo. I'm sorry. I continue to lay the blame on having just moved into our first house that very weekend, and starting my new job that very day. So at least when people ask what you did for your 30th, you can say, "I bought a house." I still think that's pretty impressive.
I made up for it this year by throwing Murdo a surprise party. He never saw it coming. Even after my insistence that we paint and decorate the guest bathroom the weekend before, and my vacuuming the bedroom in the middle of the week, and the way I avoided direct eye contact every time he asked when we were going to throw a housewarming party. After the party, during which we successfully surprised Murdo and entertained/fed nearly 50 people without getting rained out, I told him that lying to him is exhausting. He told me his head wasn't right for a week after -- I suppose when you find out everyone you know has been in on a big secret about you for a good two months, you start to question everything. Sorry, Murdo. But this time, not really.
All that to say, today is my blog's fifth birthday. In true me fashion, I don't typically make a big deal about my blog's birthday. I almost missed the first one, and then there was a cake one year, and last year I didn't even acknowledge it. But this year. If my blog were a child, she'd be starting kindergarten, a whole new world of learning and discovery just ahead. I like that.
To celebrate that, I bring popsicles. Made with fresh, juicy peaches. I got the recipe book and the popsicle molds from my sister, Jenny, on my own birthday back in March. She asked me yesterday how long I thought I'd keep my blog, and I said probably forever. Bold statement, I know, but as of right now, I can't see this space not in my life. I know I'm not here as regularly as I would like, writing and cooking and taking pictures and sharing. But it's comforting to know that my blog is always here, like a good friend who I may not talk to every day, or even every month, but every time I sit down to chat with her it's like nothing ever changed. Even though we've been through a lot together -- three jobs, one wedding and a husband, two apartments and a house, one niece and two nephews, two new cats, a cabinet full of baking pans, too many cameras and pictures taken to count.
But some things remain the same. The feel of the keyboard beneath my fingers as I type, the blank page filling with thoughts and ramblings, the images of food and life and people, the stories that accompany them. The comments from blog readers who have become familiar over the years, who I wouldn't hesitate to call friends. No matter how much life changes around me, as long as these things remain the same, then I can say with confidence:
Happy birthday, Happy Jack Eats. Here's to many, many more.
Fresh Peach Popsicles (from Ice Pops: Recipes for Fresh and Flavorful Frozen Treats by Shelly Kaldunski)
3 ripe medium peaches, about 1 lb, depitted and chopped
1/4 cup suguar
juice from 1 lemon (about 1 tablespoon)
pinch of salt
1/4 cup water
Throw everything into a blender or food processor and blend until completely smooth. Divide mixture equally among ice pop molds. Be sure to leave about half an inch of space at the top, as the mixture will expand as it freezes. Cover and freeze at least 4 hours. If inserting your own sticks, put them into the molds after about an hour, when the pops are partially frozen. Then freeze for at least 3 more hours.
To remove the popsicle from the mold easily, run the mold under warm water for a few seconds.
And now, David Bowie. Because this song has been stuck in my head all day.